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4 Answers

CFI experience

Asked by: 3354 views ,
Private Pilot, Student Pilot

Hello, I'm a student with almost 50 hrs of flight. I had a really good instructor who can no longer teach me due the duties of another job. Then I ended up with another instructor that does not have a lot of instruction experience and he claims himself he has about 800 hours of flight experience. I'm really concerned, actually scared, about the new instructor for some reasons: 1 - In our last flight he looked at the fuel tank and said we had about 10 Gallons of fuel. Then I checked with the dip stick and we had 14. When I told him about, he said, okay. We could fly for 3 hours. I told him no way. That plane (Cessna 172N 160hp) burns at least 8 GPH and I told him that I wanted to fuel the plane (I was paying for the fuel anyways). 2 - We were practicing short field takeoffs and landings. When he demonstrated the landing on the short final, right before we start flare we were at 50KIAS, I was scared to death. and he told me for that airplane we should be as close to the stall speed as possible (44 KIAS). But that is the stall speed when the CG is at the most forward possible, full flaps (Vso) and smooth air. 3 - Other day we flew in a windy day (170 @ 17knots, 20 Gust) Runaway 16 (so, very little Xwind component) which for a student like me a landing is a bit challenging, and it should not be a big of a deal for a instructor. Let me tell you this. I landed the airplane beautifully. Then I tried another landing. On the second one since the airplane bounced twice i did a go around, then (in the middle of the go around) the instructor asked for the controls. We changed the controls and he forgot to finish the go around checklist by not retracting the last notch of flaps. When he tried to land, he bounced even harder than me and I made the call to go around again. When he did it he failed to climb at Vy (73 KIAS for that airplane) he was climbing at 90. and I told him to do so. Given those issues, I don't want to fly with him anymore. I can forgive the lack of experience of instruction, but I don't think he is a safe pilot. What are your opinions about this? Thanks

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4 Answers

  1. Tyler Hoppenfeld on Mar 12, 2011

    I’m not a pilot, but I can do math (item 1)… I see no earthly reason to continue to pay somebody money to risk your life.

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  2. Best Answer

    Heather McNevin on Mar 12, 2011

    First, you shouldn’t necessarily judge a pilot or CFI straight from their hours.  A pilot or instructor with 1000 hours may have 1000 of the same flight hour or may have 1000 hours with a variety of experience and training.  Also, new instructors sometimes are very good, they are eager to help their students and often are very interested in their success.  I realize from your post, you are not just judging that CFI by their hours, but by several instances of confusion that demonstrate a clear lack of understanding and proficiency.  Please remember, YOU are the customer.  You are the one that chooses the best person to make sure you become a safe and competent pilot.  If I were you, I would find another CFI.  Even if these three scenarios could be adequately explained, you clearly do not trust this CFI.  Trust is important in teaching, you must feel at ease in order to fully absorb the learning at hand.  You sound as though you are very knowledgable, your previous instructor and your self study abilities have served you well so far and I beleive you will be an excellent pilot.  Do whats best for you, and find an instructor you trust, one that you feel comfortable in their abilities, and one that will help you finish your training to your maximum benefit.  Good luck!

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  3. B E on Mar 12, 2011

    Thank you for your opinions. and I did not mean to be disrespectful with may last instructor. so I appologize if it sounded that way. I do agree with the coments. I just don’t trust him as instructor (not as person, he seems to be a great guy!) and trust is a very important part of training. Thank you all for the comments.

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  4. Matthew Waugh on Mar 13, 2011

    It’s a bit hard to say, from your description, if your instructor is an accident waiting to happen or perfectly safe and just operating in a way you aren’t used to.
    Regardless – you don’t like flying with this instructor – get another one. You’re the customer, you should employ an instructor you get along with.
    My only caveat to that, make sure you’re open to new ways of doing things. I’m not arguing if your “current” instructor is right or wrong, but clearly your previous instructor had a way of doing things (as do we all) and there are different ways to accomplish the same means. You won’t find an instructor just like your first instructor, but equally, you don’t need to fly with an instructor you don’t trust.

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