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Private Pilot Logging Time On Commercial Flight

Asked by: 2671 views
FAA Regulations, Private Pilot

The regulations say that you, as a private pilot, can log PIC time simply by being the sole manipulator of the controls of an aircraft in which you are rated (class, category, and type if required).

Is there anything that precludes you from doing this on a flight that is a commerical operation?

For instance, can a private pilot log PIC time when sole manipulator of:

  • A plane dropping skydivers
  • A plane flying an aerial photography mission

Assuming, of course, that the legal and acting PIC is an appropriately rated commercial pilot.

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1 Answers

  1. Matthew Waugh on May 10, 2012

    I think nobody has addressed this because you’ve got to dig through a bunch of regulations to figure it out. I have not done that work, but I might and I will return when I have.
    My gut says no – because generally speaking, if the FAA grants an exemption for a pilot to do something they’re not too keen on having other pilots sticking their noses in on the deal. But I think the two things you list are Part 119 exemptions not requiring an LOA (as apparently sightseeing does these days) so perhaps the FAA has no opinion – the commercial pilot gets paid, you fly.
    I guess the only other fly in the ointment is the “flying is compensation” theory – which if applied to this situations says – nope – you can’t do it.

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