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7 Answers

Non IFR current plane with a safety pilot?

Asked by: 3343 views Instrument Rating

I am working on my instrument rating while my friend is working on her commercial rating. I need to build time under the hood while she needs to build 250 hours. Could I be under the hood with a saftey pilot with a non IFR current plane as long as we stay VFR?

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7 Answers

  1. Eric Gideon on Oct 09, 2011

    Short answer: yes.

    Long answer: an airplane only needs to be IFR certified if it will be operated under instrument flight rules. If you are remaining VFR at all times, and the aircraft is IFR equipped, you can practice any and all instrument procedures you desire while under the hood.

    Do note that your friend can only log PIC time if she could legally operate the airplane you are flying, and that if she is not required crew (ie, you are not under the hood) she cannot log any time at all.

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  3. JamesCFI on Oct 10, 2011

     Yes you can!
    The plane doesnt even have to be an IFR bird, think about it, if you were in IMC would a saftey pilot do any good??
     Many a CPL student has shotgunned hpurs with a buddy via the saftey pilot route, as long as the plane at least has enough instruments to be flown under the hood and someone is under the hood and the other a lookout, you are good to go.
     If you guys have a VOR/ADF/GPS,etc you can shoot as many “practice” appoaches as you like too, even though neither you two nor your plane is IFR.

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  4. John D. Collins on Oct 10, 2011

    One comment on Eric’s post, the airplane can be operated under IFR as long as the conditions are VMC according to the Chief Counsel’s opinion that I referenced.

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  5. John D. Collins on Oct 10, 2011

    In order to operate under an IFR flightplan, one of the pilots must have an instrument rating and be current to act as PIC under IFR, reference 61.3 (e) and 61.57 (c).  A practice approach is operated under VFR and is not an IFR flight. However, as previously discussed, the pilot, assuming one of them is properly rated and current may operate a non IFR aircraft under IFR as long as VMC conditions prevail.  Two non IFR rated commercial pilot students, one as the pilot and the other as a safety pilot may not operate under IFR, VMC or not.


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  6. CFI Academy on Oct 11, 2011

    Excellent information above. I think the question was more about “subsidizing” the cost of training here. So, the answer is yes you both can log PIC time; however, the only time that BOTH you can log PIC is the time while YOU are “under the hood” and nothing else. No taxiing, takeoff, landing time etc can be logged by both (would be questionable if you do).
    And “under the hood” is in parenthesis for a reason. 😉

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  7. CFI Academy on Oct 11, 2011

    “Under the hood” – there is no FAR that refers to “under the hood” time. Go figure.

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