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6 Answers

Changing Planes mid training?

Asked by: 3574 views
Private Pilot, Student Pilot

I have appx 10 hours (+/-) left of flying until I can take my check ride.  I have been flying a Cessna Skyhawk 172SP.  My flight school just got a Skycatcher and its appx $50 an hour cheaper to fly.  Is it ok to switch planes or do I need to stick with the 172?

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6 Answers

  1. Bill Trussell on Jan 18, 2012

    Mmy guess is that you would find the skycatcher to be a lesser aircraft from a performance perspective, which typically takes some getting used to.  At this stage of your training one concern could be the difference in avionics systems and transitioning to a new system.  If both aircraft are similarly equipped then it is just a matter of less climb performance specifically.  Of course it will be smaller inside too.
    In gereral the best results for training to your first rating would be to stick with “the one that brung ya” this far, then transition to the other one post your checkride.  You might wind up using up the savings on transition training issues.

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  2. Nathan Parker on Jan 18, 2012

    The shorter the time to your checkride, the less this makes financial sense.  If you’re truly 10 hours away from your checkride (ask your CFI), then you nominally will save $500, but if transitioning to the new airplane takes an extra 5 hours to get proficient, you’re destroyed your cost savings.

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  3. John Parsons on Jan 18, 2012

    Should the change be forced on you anyway, be philosophical about it.  I had to switch from an old Cherokee to a 172 with a constand-speed prop after about 14 hours, then to another 172 with a straight prop.  I was annoyed at having my routine messed with, and I stioll miss the Cherokee, but in the end I think it was better to be exposed to more aircraft.  The differences in handling can help you better understand what affects handling, and the different systems teach you to think about what you’re pulling the knobs for, rather than just which knobs to pull.
    For sure the dollars matter, but if you look at it from any pespective besides finance, you can’t lose either way it turns out.

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  4. John D. Collins on Jan 18, 2012

    If you are that close to getting your private pilot certificate, I would recommend you stay with the airplane you have your previous experience in.  There will be time for checkouts in other types after you have your private certificate.

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  5. DC on Jan 21, 2012

    Only while you’re on the ground. 😉

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  6. Freddie D Bowers on Feb 25, 2014

    I started liking the 172 after 10 hrs in the CTLS…thinking of changing…What did you do?
    I started 3 lessons in a low wing GOBOSH then to the CTLS …Last 2 weekends I did a demo in an older 172 and a lesson in the DA 40 ….well it looks like I’m a Highwinger for sure…I do like having the chute but like the bigger SUV feel and landing is easier …I also like a lower tacking engine because it reminds me of driving tractors on a golf course when I was a teen…I even like the struts …I like the visibility in the CTLS more Hands Down cruise speed is better in the 172 only because my CFI don’t do the neg 6 degrees flaps …Not sure what im going to do???
    in martial arts I did all and ended with JKD Aikido/BJJ 3 instructors learned a lot no black belt but I still would not change what I learned for 1 art.I My now dilemma is drive 30m or stay local I like both so maybe what the H, Ill take JP’s philosophical approach ….64hr per week on the job is worth having choices like these 🙂

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