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tomcostanza
02-13-2008, 06:25 PM
A local community college has an aviation program at a nearby community airport. I asked one of their twenty-something instructors for a guesstimate on how much training I would require to get a commercial license with about 250 hours TT, complex endorsement, but no instrument rating. He said about 40-50 hours. Then he introduced me to their Top Gun, examiner (sixty-something), of whom I asked the same question. He said 10 hours. I'm thinking, split the difference, but I thought some of you might give me a realistic guesstimate. The plan would be to pass the knowledge test first.

Many thanks in advance.

frankh
02-13-2008, 06:39 PM
Do you want instrument privilages?.....Normally you get your IFR ticket before your commercial but your not required to do that.

It took me 55 hours to get my instrument with 500 hours TT.

I have not done my commercial but I can't see anything there that is difficult...Except trying not to roll completley inverted on those silly chandelle manouver thingy's...:)

Frank

John Clark
02-13-2008, 06:58 PM
The usual route is to get your instrument ticket then the commercial. Bluntly, there is very little use for a commercial without an instrument ticket. As a practical matter, you could save some time by doing the instrument first because of the "hood" time requirement in the commercial.

John S. Clark ATP, CFI
FAAST Team Representative
RV8 N18U "Sunshine"
KSBA

Yukon
02-13-2008, 10:46 PM
With a VFR commercial you can tow gliders, spray crops, do aerial photography, fly tour flights, tow banners AND..... do not have to demonstrate instrument proficiency during commercial checkride. All in all, a win-win proposition.

pierre smith
02-14-2008, 07:05 AM
...Except trying not to roll completley inverted on those silly chandelle manouver thingy's...:)

Frank

FWIW,
I've had a bunch of guys through here for transition training and not one of them could do a good chandelle. Lazy 8's are another matter....to be able to climb the exact amount of altitude in each turn and descend to the same start altitude, while executing a 180 degree turn...and keeping the ball centered takes quite a bit of practice....which few guys can do.

Go test yourself.

Regards,

jbDC9
02-14-2008, 10:10 AM
...guesstimate on how much training I would require to get a commercial license with about 250 hours TT, complex endorsement, but no instrument rating. He said about 40-50 hours.

Wow; I'm thinking this young feller was looking to pad his logbook and/or wallet. There's just no way a VFR commercial ticket should take more than 10 hours.

John Clark
02-14-2008, 10:31 AM
Wow; I'm thinking this young feller was looking to pad his logbook and/or wallet. There's just no way a VFR commercial ticket should take more than 10 hours.

Depends on what is in the applicant's log book. If all the time is in a "non complex" airplane it could be time (and money) intensive.

Sec. 61.129 - Aeronautical experience.

(a) For an airplane single-engine rating. Except as provided in paragraph (i) of this section, a person who applies for a commercial pilot certificate with an airplane category and single-engine class rating must log at least 250 hours of flight time as a pilot that consists of at least:

(1) 100 hours in powered aircraft, of which 50 hours must be in airplanes.

(2) 100 hours of pilot-in-command flight time, which includes at least --

(i) 50 hours in airplanes; and

(ii) 50 hours in cross-country flight of which at least 10 hours must be in airplanes.

(3) 20 hours of training on the areas of operation listed in ?61.127(b)(1) of this part that includes at least --

(i) 10 hours of instrument training of which at least 5 hours must be in a single-engine airplane;

(ii) 10 hours of training in an airplane that has a retractable landing gear, flaps, and a controllable pitch propeller, or is turbine-powered, or for an applicant seeking a single-engine seaplane rating, 10 hours of training in a seaplane that has flaps and a controllable pitch propeller;

(iii) One cross-country flight of at least 2 hours in a single-engine airplane in day VFR conditions, consisting of a total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure;

(iv) One cross-country flight of at least 2 hours in a single-engine airplane in night VFR conditions, consisting of a total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure; and

(v) 3 hours in a single-engine airplane in preparation for the practical test within the 60-day period preceding the date of the test.

(4) 10 hours of solo flight in a single-engine airplane on the areas of operation listed in ?61.127(b)(1) of this part, which includes at least --

(i) One cross-country flight of not less than 300 nautical miles total distance, with landings at a minimum of three points, one of which is a straight-line distance of at least 250 nautical miles from the original departure point. However, if this requirement is being met in Hawaii, the longest segment need only have a straight-line distance of at least 150 nautical miles; and

(ii) 5 hours in night VFR conditions with 10 takeoffs and 10 landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport with an operating control tower. <snip>

John Clark
RV8 N18U "Sunshine"
KSBA

steveKs.
02-14-2008, 10:40 AM
The commercial ticket involves more than just a couple wingovers and a spot landing. The manuvers are to be performed precisely with bank angle, altitude and airspeed all nailed. I was asked to do a three turn steep spiral to a dead stick spot landing with a direct 22 knot xwind in a A36 while calling out a prelanding checklist, I consented and it all worked out.
The oral is extensive compared to a private. Know the FAR's and your airplane inside and out.

I already had the IR but the commercial rating is worthwhile even without the instrument ticket just for the experience and training.
I am not instrument current but will use the Com by driving a Air Tractor this spring.

jbDC9
02-14-2008, 11:28 AM
Depends on what is in the applicant's log book. If all the time is in a "non complex" airplane it could be time (and money) intensive.


Good point; there are a few requirements in there that I'd forgotten, the 10 hrs instrument instruction being one. My brain was referring back to 21 years ago when I did my commercial; I had most of the other requirements covered including an instrument rating, so my commercial training was 11 hrs dual. But, if he already has a complex endorsement with a few hours dual complex, then add in 10 hrs inst dual... it's still quite a stretch to say it'd take 40-50 hours.

frankh
02-14-2008, 02:01 PM
FWIW,
I've had a bunch of guys through here for transition training and not one of them could do a good chandelle. Lazy 8's are another matter....to be able to climb the exact amount of altitude in each turn and descend to the same start altitude, while executing a 180 degree turn...and keeping the ball centered takes quite a bit of practice....which few guys can do.

Go test yourself.

Regards,

Oh indeed i wasn't trying ti minimise how tricky they are, In fact my aerobatic instruction started with these with exactly the mission to fly the aircraft accurately....I know it might take a little practice but I can do 'em...and roll inverted

gmcjetpilot
03-04-2008, 08:31 PM
A local community college has an aviation program at a nearby community airport. I asked one of their twenty-something instructors for a guesstimate on how much training I would require to get a commercial license with about 250 hours TT, complex endorsement, but no instrument rating. He said about 40-50 hours. Then he introduced me to their Top Gun, examiner (sixty-something), of whom I asked the same question. He said 10 hours. I'm thinking, split the difference, but I thought some of you might give me a realistic guesstimate. The plan would be to pass the knowledge test first.

Many thanks in advance.I learned long ago early in my CFI career not to give hard estimates, predictions or guarantees on how long it would take to solo or complete a rating. The FAR's say you must log 10 hours min with a CFI towards the COM rating. There is a national average or typical I am sure.

Students do want to know and need to know "how's it going". They do need and deserve to know where the end of the tunnel is and how to get there. An organized course and lesson plans: OBJECTIVE, SCHEDULE, INSTRUCTORS ACTIONS, STUDENTS ACTIONS and COMPLETEION STANDARDS are key. The don't have to fancy outlines on paper but the instructor should be able to lay the plan out. Basically the FAR and PTS will tell you all you need. Of course there is the written which is a glorafied private pilot test, but does get into weather and decision making more.

Too many CFI's 'wing-it' and really don't have an aim or drive towards the end game, the check ride. You and your CFI should be working towards the goal, proficiency in each element and moving on to the next. Any thing else is a waste of time. Usually you need about 1.5 to 2 hours flight test prep. Now I don't give an estimate but as my students progressed I would set a Check ride date in advance, say some where in the half way point. It was a good target, set the pace and was good motivation having a date. Of course I was confident at that point it was a reasonable goal.

When you can fly all the maneuvers required in the PTS (get one if you don't have one) with in commercial pilot limits, you are ready. There is of course knowing your plane fwd and backwards. There's more emphasis on "decision making" than a private pilot. You will be given problems during the oral and during the flight with "judgment" in mind.

The Commercial single rating is the most FUN rating by far. You get not only get the prop and gear to play with, but you fly the plane by the seat of your pants, near its limits, further out in the envelope than pvt. It's totally VFR and lots of banking and yanking.

8's on pylons
8's around pylons
Lazy 8
Chandelle
Steep Spiral
All the private manuvers (steep turns, stall series) to a higher standard

One question do you have your Inst rating? I recommend people get their instrument first. You only need 125 hours TT for the Inst rating. The instrument is more way more technical and it will take 40-50 hours. It is also more practical in expanding your personal flight capabilities. There is nothing wrong with COM first than INST, but just my suggestion.

The CFI that told you 40-50 hours, may be covering his bases (not to disappoint) or may have been a slow learner himself. May be he thinks you are not a very fast learner? :rolleyes: :D He probably just does not know. There is no way to predict without flying with someone. Flying regularly, a few times a week, is important to minimizing training time.

If your instructor has you fly straight and level too much or takes you for 2 hour lessons and joy rides, he or she is wasting your TIME. If you're not tired after an hour, he or she is not working you hard enough. Lessons should be short, an hour or less. Instructors wasting time might stretch training out to 50 hours. Get another instructor. You don't need to pay for boring holes in the sky. The commercial rating is FEEL rating, there is NO instrument work, it's all VFR. You also better know your planes system fwd/backwards. Also you will know the AIM/FAR better than you ever have. You will be asked questions while flying to distract you. So there is still lots of book work.

There are good books with great graphics and text to explain the hows and whys of each COM maneuver.

BOTTOM LINE: How long? When you can fly all the PTS maneuvers to proficiency in limits, with ease while being distracted with knowledge questions. 10 hr's is the min you must log towards the Com rating. It's a fun rating. Because its a VFR rating winter might cause training delays if you are in the North.

brianwallis
03-05-2008, 09:50 PM
Ah yes.. I'm an odd duck in this same situation so I feel compelled to answer. I am a fixed wing comercial and fling wing comercial pilot. Without the instrument, the Airplane ticket is limited to no night carrying of passengers and not more than 50 nm. along with landing and take off limited to the airport of origin. Soooo I can tow banners etc. along with all the other stuff listed in one of the posts above. I bought a yankee and built up my time for the requirements in that. I did not need much except for the instrument training. So we did some Looooooong cross countries and had a good time(under goggles of course). The checkride was done in a 172rg because the aircraft has to be complex. Slowflight was pretty uneventful and we combined the spot landing with a shortfield landing... etc... the rest of the manuevers were not really too bad. Lots of practice helps. The oral was extensive and my examiner really hit me on wx, so know your weather!!! and your limitations as a comercial pilot. The pre-exam shakes were worse than the checkride. Plus if the examiner knows you fly an RV, (s)he may lean favorably towards you and your soon to be ticket. Not just anybody can fly an RV. I'm always here for questions. I'm working on my Fling CFI ride now and cramming like you would not believe! Go up with a local CFI and have them appraise your currency and pick their brain. They will know the best answer to your question.
Best
Brian Wallis
404-405-1315