Have Not Heard This One Before......

Andrew B
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 9:22 pm
Location: KLAF - Purdue University
Contact:

Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Andrew B » Sat Mar 06, 2010 4:59 pm

So today I had scheduled a flight lesson. Im training in a PA-28-161 Piper Warrior. So we depart for my lesson. Today he flew to a towered airport for some controller practice. We chose an airport about 30 miles out. On our way back we got to talking about the LSA market and the new Piper Sport. I asked him whether or not we would be seeing any sent to our airport. Im based out of an airport that carries the Piper line and is a rather large dealer. He told me that he had no clue. He said a few years prior to me starting my training my flight school had experiemented with the new LSA option and began LSA training. I forget what brand they carried. They began to give sport pilot certificates. They said that due to the "everyone can fly LSA" mentality that they began to see students intellectcually that they were surprized were allowed to operate a car without an instructor. He then told me that due to the liability of the new student population's seriousness towards flying and what they exhibited during the training that they had to flush the program. He basically stated that these students are literally flying along fat, dumb and happy.

This I thought was very interesting in the sense everyone is really supporting the LSA development and expansion. Its troubling to me also because just like me i bet there are many pilots in my area who would like the opportunity to get a type rating in a Piper Sport. Has anyone else heard/experienced anything similar? I know you recently talked about how supposedly the Skycatcher is hurting the GA industry. Dave, Jack, Jeb, any opinion on this situation?

Andrew
Andrew Blanchard
Purdue University '16
Aviation Technology

User avatar
mjd
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:01 pm
Location: Brooklyn NY
Contact:

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby mjd » Sat Mar 06, 2010 8:24 pm

Andrew,

I'm not completely sure I understand your point so I hope this post isn't way out in left field.

I know a sport pilot CFI, meaning he can only teach students to get a LSA ticket. He has a nice bunch of serious students.The plane is a tail-wheel tandem and and is less forgiving then a 152 for example.. He says the beginning students are the best. According to my friend the most difficult students are the retired airline captains and other high time accomplished pilots who get bushwhacked by the wind and ground-loop or just are not used to a plane that needs so much handling. Fortunately nothing really serious ever happened.

It seems to me that if you are just starting out you have to learn the same stick and rudder skills no matter what kind of plane you are going to fly. Look at all the guys who started in Piper Cubs. LSA's can even be more challenging in some ways as they are more affected by wind and turbulence. I do not mean to imply that LSA's are hard to fly and have low stall and approach speeds but I don't really understand why one could get away with fat, dumb and happy".

Avemco recently raised the amount of time they require for a checkout in an LSA from 2 hours to 5 because of too many runway loss of control accidents.
Michael D

Andrew B
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 9:22 pm
Location: KLAF - Purdue University
Contact:

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Andrew B » Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:09 pm

Sorry Mike if I was a little unclear,

He said that they were beginning to introduce the LSA into the flight school. Now I believe the aircraft they had was tricycle gear. He began to explain to me that when they began training students, they recieved alot of them. I guess supposedly they had some students who were willing to pay for training, but weren't taking any instruction and or rules seriously or maturely. He stated that this began to become an issue. For this reason they stopped LSA training apparently. I meant in my last post that maturity wise these students shouldn't fly. The program was just a experimental trial to see whether LSA would be interesting to perspective students and to see whether or not the profits from it would outweigh the cost. My instructor was very general in his explination and hesitant about details and I felt almost like maybe this wasn't my business to jump right in and ask questions. I just wanted to see what others thought of the idea that LSA was pulled from a flight school due to the type of students it was attracting. Is that something that flight schools typically are worried about when bringing a new aircraft or type into the training fleet( what types of students it will attract)? By no means am I agreeing with the actions in this case.

Sorry about no being too clear on my first story. Hope this cleared it up. Thanks for asking and it wasn't out of left field. I wanted to get more details but he seemed hesitant and I was on a 45 to land so I guess the story had to wait. ;)
Andrew Blanchard
Purdue University '16
Aviation Technology

Dave Higdon
Posts: 808
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:02 pm

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Dave Higdon » Sun Mar 07, 2010 4:17 pm

While the liability issue doesn't surprise me, the blaming it on halfhearted, cavalier students is a new one...I mean, in every other situation in my memory where the CFI (regardless of type) had problems or concerns with the student's abilities or seriousness, they told them -- and told them that they wouldn't get to solo for as long as that attitude or sloppiness remained an issue...most of the time, the students vanished...some of them turned into airline pilots :o ...;)

Sorry -- but something sounds off in this story...

But that's just me...heck, remember an airport operator who tried to bar ultralights years ago "because they didn't have to train" at his school...the day he told a visiting pilot about how his airport couldn't have unlicensed pilots, the ultralight pilot he was throwing off showed the fine gentleman a valid pilot certificate, and a medical..."well, I was told they we might lose our FAA money..." at which point the visiting ultralight pilot also produced his FAA ID...

From that point, it was "well, I don't like 'em..."...he learned to like 'em enough... :roll:

Dave

Andrew B
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 9:22 pm
Location: KLAF - Purdue University
Contact:

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Andrew B » Sun Mar 07, 2010 4:25 pm

"Turned into airline pilots :o " <---- :D

Yeah I felt it was confusing and took what I knew and posted it up to see whether or not someone could offer me a explaination. Dave, I think you did a good job. It does sound a bit fishy in the sense they decided to flush the program rather than tell the students that they were no-goes. He made it sould like maybe there were a multitude of "unqualified" students. I most certianly am not saying that this route was the right road to travel with this issue. I think for the sake of the students who weren't involved that they could have kept the training. I just havn't heard of this happening to any other flight school.

I am only 15 so when this occured I was barely allowed to ride in a car without a car seat ;) It happened quite a few years ago, and I didn't start my training till long after this event occured. I don't know this story from personally being present but just the 10 minute conversation when approaching my airport to land.
Andrew Blanchard
Purdue University '16
Aviation Technology

Dave Higdon
Posts: 808
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:02 pm

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Dave Higdon » Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:33 pm

Understand, Andrew...and am on your wavelength...

Funny thing popped into my head after logging off (there's so much space available... :roll: ), aren't all flight students, by definition, unqualified?

Why would you need a CFI to teach you to fly if you were otherwise qualified?

Another thing that slipped my mind yesterday: in many businesses, the marketing and sales people like to refer to prospects as "qualified" or "unqualified" based on an assessment of the prospects finances, primarily, with other "qualifiers" often thrown in -- such as a demonstrated need or ability to use a product or service...

Now I'm probably totally wrong here, but it seems slightly possible that those "unqualified" candidates were people who didn't really possess the financial "qualifications" to learn from this outfit so they retired the program...slightly possible, but much more implausible...

Gonna stick with my gut belief that they didn't like the financial returns of the shorter program and wanted to steer students through a program that effectively takes twice as long, with double the aircraft rental potential and twice the CFI time -- and usually more...

Somebody light some incense in that place, eh? :x

Dave

User avatar
mjd
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:01 pm
Location: Brooklyn NY
Contact:

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby mjd » Mon Mar 08, 2010 2:28 pm

Andrew,

I think that Dave's post is much more to the point than mine and I agree with it. It was probably just some kind of excuse for not wanting to run an LSA program for economic reasons. It does seem like an unfortunate excuse. Even if you take their arguments on the merits, it doesn't make sense that an LSA student would be any worse or have less potential than any other beginning student paying more for a Private.
It might make more sense if they promoted the advantages of having a Private Ticket over an LSA.
Michael D

Andrew B
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 9:22 pm
Location: KLAF - Purdue University
Contact:

Re: Have Not Heard This One Before......

Postby Andrew B » Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:45 pm

I think that you are right about them loosing potential private students (and profits) to the newly created LSA avenue of training. Maybe thats why, sounds reasonable to me. They operate a fleet of 3 Warrior II and a DA42. They probally weren't turning enough profit from those as they would have liked to with the addition of a cheaper to rent aircraft.

I appreciate you guys offering some reasoning because when I heard that I had the whole "You did WHAT?" mentality.

Happy flying!

Andrew
Andrew Blanchard
Purdue University '16
Aviation Technology


Return to “Light Sport Aviation/Sport Pilot”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests