Tell me about your first solo flight

oilcanbland

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Just wouldn't mind hearing what everyone has to say about their first solo flight. My CFI just gave me the pre-solo written exam to take home and study today, so I will take mine within my next 2-3 lessons. The butterflies are showing up a little, but I know I'll be all right. How did you all handle that?

Any other advice would be appreciated.

Thanks.
 

gsrcrsx68

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My instructor jumped out of the plain after a full stop landing, told me to do what I had just done 3 more times and come to the hanger.

He didn't give me any notice ahead of time. Kinda glad he did it that way.

You'll do just fine. And don't forget to wear some shirts you don't mind being without to the next few lessons.
 

navigator72

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my 1st solo on video

I pretty much knew when I was going solo.
I got my father to videotape the whole thing <3 of the best landing I have ever made>. I have since watched the video frame by frame analyzing the whole thing., all I came up with.........I finally soloed!!!!!
I haven't watched it for for quite awhile but it is good to know that I have it on film for my later years.....
Goodluck, you will love it!
It is normal to be nervous with the first solo.....Think of how it must feel for your CFI, he/she is putting their licenses on the line hoping you don't screw up

.
Have fun,let us know how you do
 

1900cpt

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From the instructor perspective, it is normal for the student to be nervous. If the student is REALLY nervous, then what i would do is give them the pre-solo written, then in the next lesson or so, just have them pull inot the ramp and jump out!!

If they know its coming that lesson, they are more apt to be nervous and probably fly worse because the nerves. Once they realize what just happened, and are going to go solo, you are out of the plane waving bye to them!!

All the students that i diid this too did fine, they realized that it was not as bad as they thought.

1900cpt
 

Dep676

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My instructor did the same. We were doing some pattern work and taxied back to the FBO. He got out and said go do 3 tol's. I was nervous and excited at the same time. It was almost 7 years ago and I can remember it like it was last week.

You will do fine and congrats.
 

Timebuilder

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My solo was on a windy day, with a nasty gust every so often. I was in a Cherokee 140.

My Dad had told me that when I look over after takeoff and see that other seat, it will look incredibly empty. Actually, it made me smile.

I went missed on the first approach as a gust made me pop up on short final. Better safe than sorry. Three more and the deal was done. What a buzz!
 

redshirt

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1st solo

I just accidentally posted the response below as a new thread instead of a reply. It goes to show, if I can solo, you can solo, no problem...


I agree with all of the above. If you think about it from the instructors point of view, they will not let you solo until they are absolutely rock solid sure you are ready. Generally they try and down play the event. You will be nervous, but remember to savor the experience. It will be one of the great moments in your flying life. You'll do fine.
 

bobbysamd

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First solo

Twenty years and two months ago and I remember it as clear as yesterday.

I had my day job and it was a very hectic Monday. I was working something like a 5 am to 2 pm shift, but got out late and was stressed and in a big rush. So, I didn't have time to get work out of my mind and to relax. Normally, I met my instructor at the airplane at 5. Somehow, I just knew I would solo that day. We flew to the field and practiced touch and goes. He told me to taxi to the ramp. I think he asked how I'd like to try it myself. He told me to do three touch and goes. I remember being nervous as he11 and did another runup, although he got out with the engine running (not a good safety idea). Then, I took the runway, advanced the throttle, and took off. I remember whooping for joy as the airplane climbed. I continued around the pattern and on final I was a little aprehensive because my landings had been inconsistent, but safe. Not to worry. I landed just fine and did it twice more.

I had wondered if I'd ever solo. I tell ya, it's the best feeling . . . . . and part of the pleasure is telling your friends, your parents, those who support the idea of you learning to fly, that you soloed.

Now, let's fast-forward this discussion. Wait until you become a flight instructor and solo out your first student. It's nerve-wracking. You wonder if your student is really ready. But, he does just fine, and it's not simply the best feeling, just the greatest feeling . . . almost as good as when you soloed, but it's different, somehow. More of a feeling of gratification and satisfaction, and the process coming full circle. That something you were given you are giving. And, this same feeling returns every time you solo a student.

Enjoy your solo. You will. I guarantee it.
 
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surfnole

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I was amazed at the climb rate in the 152.

Much more interesting than the solo was the first cross country and long cross country.

I did my long cross country in North Georgia. Because I lived in Florida, I was completely unfamiliar with the cities and landmarks. It was quite an adventure because I visited places on my own where I had never been before.
 

1900cpt

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I agree with bobbysamd on the instructor nerves. When you sign your first solo off, you rare probably more nervous than the actual student. Even though you know they are ready, it is still pretty scary for you.

For instance, I had a student of mine actually leave the pattern for a while...that scared the cr@p out of me. What i told her when i juped out was...."go fly around the pattern a few times, then come back after a few landings."

Well she interpreted that as "go fly around for a while then come back for some landings.":( Talk about being scared. When i looked up in the pattern and didnt see her>>>>OH SH!T. Where did she go?!?

Well, she decided to go to the practice area for a few minutes to calm her nerves..then came back for the touch and goes.

1900cpt
 

FearlessFreep

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When getting my solo flight for my Private License I was just very happy that the instructor got out of the plane!

It was a piece of cake and will be for you as well. Instructors are not going to let you go unless they are very sure that you can do it! I read an incident in which a soloing student had an engine failure during his 3 landings. He responded to the situation as trained and had no problems, landed without incident.

Just as everyone says the improvement in performance without the other person is very noticeable.

My actual first solo flight was not during my Private training. The first one was in a single seat ultralight, so from the first takeoff to the first landing I had never flown it before. They just had a radio that they would give you instruction as you would fly. It was great fun! They gave us a little instruction in a C-150 before they threw you into the ultralight.

When I soloed for the Private I already had at least 100 hours flying ultralights and probably close to 50 hours flying Hang Gliders. So I was pretty happy when the instructor got out so I could have some fun on my own!

Kick it! You'll have lots of fun! It's a gas!

Good Luck!
 

Caveman

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The day of my solo my CFI said today is the day. After a couple of landings he got out and said, "Have fun". 1st time around some drunk guy (literally, more on that later) pulls out on to the runway when I was on short final. I sidestepped right and went around. The guy takes off and starts doing lazy 8's inside the pattern! There are two other airplanes in the pattern besides the nutcase and me. I continue on around the pattern but I'm kinda freaked out by whats going on. The problem was that I didn't know how to get out of the flow of traffic. I know, I know, just turn away from the airport. Seems so obvious now, but at 15 hours I was clueless. Anyways I just keep motoring on to base and final. I make a crappy landing on the nosewheel and blow out the nosegear strut seal and the drunk guy eventually gets arrested. If nothing else it was different. Have fun! ;-)
 

HMR

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Man, those 152’s climb like a rocket when you’re by yourself!
I agree, it’s much more nerve-wracking for the CFI watching his first student solo. I remember mine well. It was last June. I had my student drop me off at the tower. By the time I climbed the stairs into the control room, my student was ready for takeoff. The controllers handed me a headset with a mic. I watched with pride and anxiety as Frank lifted off for the first time all by himself. I turned my head just in time to see the airplane on short final about to land gear up. The controllers were on the other side of the control room looking at something else. I tried to yell something into my mic but couldn’t find the push-to-talk switch. I tried to alert the controllers but all that came out was “heh er ooog uhhh”. They finally noticed me jumping and pointing but… too late. The plane did a belly slide down the runway and the airport was closed. My student just shrugged and went sightseeing for an hour. I wore a hole in the carpet pacing around. When the airport reopened, Frank came back and did three perfect T&G’s.
 

TurboS7

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My first solo flight was Feb.8 1972, I was a junior in high school. It was in a Luscombe 8-A on a dirt field called Townsend field at Waxhaw, N.C. We did about 5 stop and goes then my instructor got out.( a mission pilot that flew the DC-3 Chief Tarriri around-Airliner World June 2002)The first landing was a three point with a little skip. The next two were perfect. My Dad got the complete thing on 'Super 8" and we now have it in video. When I soloed my wife her time came and I jumped out. She said," not today" and nothing I did or said could get her to solo. The next night we went out and she did a perfect job-women......
 

Ravengirl

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Ahhh, January 20th, 2000. It was a windy, mostly overcast day at SNA. I knew I was supposed to solo, it was just a matter of how well I did on the first few landings, and if the wind would be OK. I remember everything about it, from what the tower controllers said to the tail number of the airplane.

We flew the pattern and I landed rather well three times. Greg told me to stop and let him off onto the grass between the terminal and runway 19L. He told me to call the tower and tell them that I was going to do my first solo. He wandered over and stood staring, and the tower told me good luck. And I flew.

The first takeoff, I was in shock, and on climbout, I was in awe. Yes, an 18 year old student was shocked by the new and improved climb rate for the mighty C152! About then I set my mind to keeping Greg out of the plane as much as possible.

Third time around it got windier, and I noticed someone standing on the roof of the terminal parking garage. It turned out to be my father, who had decided to show up with a video camera and a borrowed transceiver and film the entire thing.

When I landed, Greg was overjoyed, and hopped back in. Dad showed up and I kind of yelled at him, but secretly, I still like to watch that tape every once in a while. Nothing of my shirt was cut off, because I was wearing a sweater. And the Sunrise tradition of a bad polaroid was foiled because the camera was out of film.

Stephanie
 

ACE

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It is normal to be nervous. Just do what you were taught you will be fine. I myself had two good landings and bounced the third. Good luck to you!!!!!!
 
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