Transition Training Syllabus
I'm re-posting the link to the draft transition training syllabus for anyone that is interested:
Here is the link to the grade sheets that accompany the syllabus:
Additionally, if there is anyone in the Florida Panhandle or Memphis TN areas that would like to get together to have an informal discussion about syllabus development or simply talk RV training, testing or safety, I'd be happy to make arrangements to get together as the schedule allows. I would still like to tweak the syllabus to ensure that it not only meets baseline requirements but also includes sufficient "differences" training that it mirrors a typical, FAA recognized program--as currently written, it's largely generic (or RV-4 specific). Ideally, it would include input from instructors versed in each type (i.e., -6, -7, -8, -9). Additionally, consideration needs to be given to the LSA folks (-12) and the "big iron" (-10 and now -14). In a perfect world, we would establish a working group with the appropriate folks to develop training materials.
Big Picture Points to Ponder:
Type Club. One of the challenges that the RV community currently faces is its own diversity. Unscientific analysis shows there are more RV's flying than all other homebuilt types combined, with more showing up on the registry at a good rate. Other types have already established clubs and even formal, insurance industry recognized training programs. Owing to the large size and diversity of the RV community, there is no one, central "belly button" (if you will) that an organization like the FAA, EAA, etc. can address when attempting to coordinate effort or establish standards, etc. A type club could take on development of training materials and aids, instructor validation (perhaps allowing a non-traditional approach to instructor qualification that would open the door to experienced folks that may not hold a current CFI), test materials to assist with phase I and oversee community-based safety improvement efforts (e.g., active Safety blog and perhaps, a "Hi, I'm Mike and here's what I screwed up..." self-squawk program, etc.). This may also serve as a venue for formal insurance industry recognition.
Training Device. One possible solution to training would be development of a representative simulator. Even a very basic training device would go a long way to allowing folks to a relatively inexpensive means to improve the quality of training. Red Bird simulators have capitalized on the profusion of technology and begun building affordable simulators for different classes of aircraft--imagine an "RV" sim where an instructor could flip between -4 and -8; or -6, -7, -9 or -14? Add some of the nifty capability of their "cross wind" trainer and you'd have a very useful tool for training, regardless of FAA designation. Due to the fact that a "standard" configuration RV of any type simply does not exist, this generic approach could prove to be as effective as using a surrogate trainer.
To summarize, it may be time to consider formation of a "type" club to coordinate safety, training and test assistance efforts for the RV community. Additionally, development of appropriate training and test materials will take some work and active participation of the instructors and experienced pilots within the community. Lastly, the next step may be development of a suitable training device.
There is quite a bit of talent resident within the RV community, and I'm confident, this is all in the art of the doable.
vacntess99 AT yahoo DOT com
P.S. Doug, any chance we might keep this discussion in the "yellow sticky" section?
If your mission is to reduce accidents on first flights, qualification requirements to take the course negate the mission.
Tailwheel recency, and minimum previous aircraft horsepower experience, guarantee the people most in need of this training won't qualify for it.
I gave the draft proposal A straight thru read when it was posted several months ago. I have a few hundred hours of tail wheel time and fly an O-290 powered Thorp T-18. Yet, I don't think I qualify to take the course?
Jerry VanGrunsven encouraged me and my CFII wife to take Seger's course, and I came away feeling this currently is a Big Tent 'everyone is welcome' experience. The draft proposal is very officious and comes across in a negative way, not in alignment with many home builders character and experience.
I am I favor of training. The long time builder with little recent flight time needs an inexpensive and welcoming training experience, not an overpriced simulator and military regimen.
I like the idea and most of the content of this lesson plan. Its completion is almost certain to make any pilot a better rvator. I have a few more thoughts on military style training, which naturally has positives and negatives associated with it, that I will post later.
I agree with ship that your reqs should be changed to "recommend prior to" instead of "will have prior to."
My only concern with generating this syllabus for insurance is that in stead of being a "nice to have" prior to rv flying, it becomes a "must have." given the current state of general aviation (read that as dying state), adding another cost barrier to flying will only serve to further cripple our hobby.
Nice job putting it together though.
I apologize up front--I only reposted the draft so that folks would have access to the links. The real purpose of the post was to discuss the merits of a type club and the use of a simulator as an inexpensive means to improve the quality of training (or help folks maintain some semblance of currency that are currently on a "flying pause" to build, etc.)!
To elaborate a bit on the syllabus:
None of this is designed to be exclusionary--the objective is to get more pilots better training, increase the RV pilot population and help improve safety. It may seem intimidating at first glance, but it's actually straight forward. No one that wants to succeed and can pass a biennial flight review will ever "wash out" of this (or any other effective GA) program. It is a military style syllabus only because that is what I am most familiar with, and is also very similar to an airline syllabus. It would be what's required for a 141 civilian program as well. I originally put this together as an academic exercise to assist with my own RV transition and realized that it might help instructors that are seeking a LODA by eliminating some typing. The only other published syllabus I'm familiar with is the one posted on Van's site. The syllabus is only a draft and not intended, in any way, to be a "regulation" or "instruction" or form the basis of such.
The "requirements" are only designed to ensure a reasonable chance that the syllabus can be executed in the 5 hours allotted (4 1.25 hour flights)--for example, if a pilot requires a tail wheel check-out or hasn't flown in a long period of time, more than five hours will, likely, be required to accomplish a check-out. The "requirements" are not hard and fast, simply a starting point and can be adjusted to suit all circumstances. The five hours was chosen as a target, since that is a typical insurance-driven requirement, however each carrier will vary. Anything specified by the carrier is a real, minimum requirement and acceptable performance is at the discretion of the instructor.
All of the objective standards are right from the private pilot practical test standards with the exception of a chandelle, lazy eight and steep spiral, those are from the commercial test standards. These maneuvers, along with any aerobatics, are simply optional. The baseline syllabus includes ground operations, takeoff/landing (airport operations, the "4 basics" (straight and level, turns, climbs and descents), slow flight, and stalls in addition to RV-specific academics and emergency procedures, that's it. It's just when you lay that out in detailed form, it starts to look like a lot of stuff. As a matter of fact, it doesn't even include specific "differences" training (i.e., in the eyes of the FAA an RV-6 is not an RV-7, therefore if a pilot were trained in a -6, "differences" training would address the transition to the -7)--such is an "offical" read; which is important since we pilots really need to understand the FAA/NTSB perspective if we are going to effectively engage to maintain our experimenting privileges.
All advanced maneuvers in the syllabus are simply optional, and need only be performed for familiarization purposes when and if an upgrading pilot wants exposure. Aerobatic instruction in an RV is problematic, largely based on payload restrictions. I'm not very big (5'7" and 145), so with the right student, in most RV's with proper fuel load, aerobatic instruction and upset recovery are practical; but for many (if not most) folks it's not practical or may be restricted by insurance coverage or other circumstances.
I'm very concerned about the shrinking pilot population, and having an affordable means to fly; so my contribution is flight instruction (I keep a current CFII/ME), helping folks with flight test and efforts like this to assist with improving safety in the RV community. I'd be happy to help any RV'er that calls or writes, any time!
Again, I'm sorry if I obfiscated any of this in the original post--wasn't my intent!
I did another read through, and with both a civilian and military background, I really like the draft product with a few minor exceptions.
My thoughts on military style training in a civilian environment...it has a few negatives which of course are dependent on the instructor, but are also dependent upon the syllabus. For people who have an option in the type of training they receive, mil style training can be intimidating and make them shy away from an otherwise very good training program. That same intimidation can also add unnecessary stress to an already stressful event such as learning to fly a new experimental aircraft. Then there are colloquial military terms which can add confusion in the civilian environment. I think all of these can be mitigated through how the syllabus is worded and presented.
Positives to military style training are that it lets you know exactly how you are performing with a well-defined grading scale. If you have a weak area, you?ll find out what it is. It also provides a clear path for progression/completion. Most importantly, and as your draft indicates, it is very thorough. (The positive list looks shorter, but positives generally dont require and discussion since no one complains about the good things. The reality is that there are many benefits to structured training)
A couple of changes I would make to get this to be more inviting are how you present the pre-reqs and how the training is broken up. It might be helpful to ID minimum recommended flight maneuvers, optional confidence maneuvers, optional aerobatics (which you have done to a certain extent, but I dont think its really clear what the minimum transition training is for a new pilot).
I think the most significant pushback you will recieve on this program is how it defines what a pilot should be able to do. Many experienced civilian pilots are going to think, "I already know how to fly, and I have a bunch of tailwheel time, why do I need to do this extra junk?" I think defining those minumum familiarization items would go a long ways toward selling the program to those guys.
Really nice product though. I would recommend it as reading for new and old RVers alike. If you are a new RVer, the training and maneuvers cover most everything you would want to do in an RV.
How to Copy and Print
Or that is not being done yet?
How about us getting ready to make the transition from
C150/152/172's to RV9A's or tri gear?
Something extra to do during transition training with transition instructor?
Transition Training East of the Mississippi
Local pilot friend here in Western Pennsylvania has recently purchased a flying RV-9A and most of his recent experience has been in an Aircoupe. Is there anyone we can recommend for transition training located near the Ohio Valley or at leasr East of the Mississippi River?
RV-8 flying for over 7 years
A different view
I have been watching this thread, and thought I'd post my two cents, as an RV-10 builder and CFI who jumped thru the FAA hoops to get a waiver (LODA) to do transition training.
"a welcoming experience". Of course this is true. I think pilot-trainees sometimes forget that they are the employer. If you do not like the training you are getting, fire the CFI and find someone else.
"it will become a 'must have'". I think we are already there. Insurance companies are now pretty much insisting on some type of training for all pilots with no prior time in type.
"inexpensive". This reminds me of Walt Disney's first law, "Wishing will make it so.". I suspect most people do not realize that much of the cost is now being driven by insurance. I gave 5 hours of dual to a local pilot. He calculated that the convenience of local training (no airfare, motel, rental car) was worth enough to him that he paid the cost of putting him on my insurance - $500. That is not a typo, he paid $100 per hour just for insurance.
"something extra to do" FSDOs vary a lot, but mine has held me to a strict interpretation of my waiver (LODA). I cannot offer anything but transition trainning in my -10. Anything that could be done in a certified aircraft is not allowed. No high performance endorsements, no flight reviews, no IPCs. I understand the FAAs logic, but this does limit instruction opportunities and therefore increases the average cost per hour.
"prerequisites". Everyone hates hard numbers. 200 HP needs nothing, but 201 HP needs a high performance endorsement. So who wants them? 1. My insurance company. The more relaxed the numbers, the more it costs. 2. FSDO asked me to specify prerequisites on my LODA application. 3. Me. This is my airplane, that I spent 4 years building. Before I let a complete stranger handle the controls I want some assurance that he/she will not abuse the prop control. I have to trust that they will not abuse the brakes (I can try to overpower them on the stick, but cannot 'unbrake' if they lock up a wheel.).
I am happy to see the OP make this effort, because I see this idea as something insurance companies like. And I think getting reasonable insurance coverage is the key to lowering the costs, which in turn is the key to getting more pilots to participate.
Sorry this is so long.
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