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6 Answers

Muilti-engine time as a PP student

Asked by: 3400 views General Aviation, Private Pilot, Student Pilot


I am a student pilot working on my ASEL certificate.  I need a clarification on 61.109.  I have a friend/CFI with a twin.  If I used that plane for a portion of my training (like a dual XC), can that time count toward my initial training?


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6 Answers

  1. Micah on Aug 29, 2011

    No. While there is no prohibition against receiving dual instruction in a multi-engine airplane during your ASEL training, and although it may or may not be worthwhile experience, it does not count as any of the aeronautical experience required for the ASEL. Read 61.109 again and see that parts (a) (1), (2), (3), (3), and (5) all specify single-engine. 

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  2. Brad on Aug 29, 2011

    So, theoretically, I could have done 100% of my training in a twin, received my AMEL, and would not be type rated to fly a single engine plane?  Seems like meeting the criteria in 61.109 (b)(1) xc training in a multi would also satisfy 61.109 (a)(1) xc training in a single.  Does cross country flight instruction somehow change when you add that second engine?
    Just another one of those weird regulations that doesn’t make much common sense.

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  3. John D. Collins on Aug 29, 2011

    My reading of 91.109 is that the dual in the twin can technically count towards the 40 hour total, but not towards the training requirements listed in 91.109 (a)(1) thru (5) which must be accomplished in a single engine airplane.  These items define 30 of the 40 hours as a minimum (20 hours of dual and 10 hours of solo) that must be accomplished in a single engine airplane. As a practical matter, the multi-engine training you receive is not very likely to be needed to meet the requirements for a private pilot single engine rating nor is it likely to contribute to the skills you will need to master to obtain your pilot certificate, as in all reality you will be a passenger.
    Once you obtain your ASEL rating, the process of adding a multi-engine add on rating will not require you to take a new Knowledge exam and you won’t need to meet the time requirements specified in 91.109 (b), see 91.63 for details.

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  4. Micah on Aug 29, 2011

    Yep, although more than just theoretically; the private pilot certificate is class specific. You need an ASEL to fly single-engine land, ASES to fly single-engine sea, AMEL to fly multi-engine land, etc. The question is not necessarily “What type of experience do I have?” but instead “What type of experience do I need for the certificate for which I have applied?” The ASEL certificate has certain requirements and ME experience does not meet those.
    Also, type-rated means something other than what you’re using it to describe.

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  5. Brian on Sep 01, 2011

    Adding up the hour requirements of 61.109 (a) (1-5) we get only 22 hours required in a single engine aircraft. Paying particular attention to (a) (1) you’re only required 3 hours of your cross country instruction to be in a single engine aircraft. In other words, you can do 18 hours, theoretically, of cross country time in a twin and count it towards your rating. 
    That said, I strongly recommend against this. As was mentioned by John, you’re going to, more or less, be a passenger. Task saturation will set in almost upon sitting in the cockpit. Further, the focal point of your learning will not be on basic skills needed to make you a pilot safe. At this stage your focus should be on attaining solid basic skills without unecessary distraction. And this, statistically, takes far longer than 40 hours; much less 22. 

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  6. Bob Watson on Sep 02, 2011

    I think it’d be cool to log some ME dual, but I wouldn’t expect it to shorten your training. If anything, as I think the other CFIs have already inferred, it would lengthen it. My other concern would be that you might get some ME questions, or at least complex airplane questions on your oral exam. I don’t think that’s in the PTS, but if the examiner sees some ME time in your log book (and it’ll stand out like a beacon), I’d bet dollars to doughnuts he or she will ask you to talk about it.
    Bottom line: it could be a great experience, but it won’t make the trip to your PPL check ride any quicker or cheaper.

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