Third Class Medical or Not?

Third Class Medical or Not?

This may be a good boost for GA as many pilots have stopped flying due to a loss of their medical. If the General Aviation Community can experience a burst of interest and participation from former pilots, we may just stop feeling like a dying breed. Here’s the full article put out by AOPA on the FAA’s announcement:

Pilot Training with Piper

Pilot Training with Piper

I recently read a refreshing article regarding Piper getting more involved in the training and flight school market. I know that’s hard to believe they could get more involved as most of us have all flown a Piper aircraft of some sort in our current or past training career. However if you look at how dominant Cessna has been with their 172 series and 152’s of the past, it makes sense for Piper to want to step up. I love flying so whether I’m in a 172, Archer, Warrior etc, it really doesn’t matter to me. For training purposes, as a CFI, I will say the 172’s are very forgiving, but there is something to say about a training in a low wing Piper. I found with past students it simply came down to what was available, cheap and preference, in that order.

Piper does seem to have a few training markets cornered such as with their twin Seminole and it would be interesting to know if we will see  “Piper Training Centers” competing with Cessna Training Centers. Anything to keep future pilots interested, engaged and excited will only benefit the aviation community. Here’s the link to the full article put out by AOPA:

Aviation Apps

Ok, so this is not new news. Aviation apps have been around a while and more and more keep exploding on the market. I re-visited an article I read this past summer about some of the best apps available on the aviation market and wanted to share those with you.

Aside from the awesome world of digital chart applications that allow us to leave the 3-ring binders and hoards of paper at home, there are some fantastic applications available for your Apple and Android device. Keep in mind as the article states, not every pilot needs every app. Some of the apps are free, some a small fee. Also, some are only available for iPhone or iPad devices, sorry Android users.

One of my favorites is the E6B from Sport’s that is compatible with both Apple and Android platforms. I couldn’t imagine even going back to the old manual E6B after taking this for a spin. Best of all it’s cheap and with the holiday’s upon us, this would be a great gift for your pilot or in my case, myself. Of course some of the apps are so awesome that it may be encouragement enough to go buy yourself an iPad if you don’t have one yet, just to be able to access some of these wonderful apps.

Here is the link to the full article:,0

Density Altitude

It’s hot and DA is up! Plan to lighten the loads on those hot summer months. We are hitting density altitudes of 8,000ft from a 4,200 field elevation here in the Salt Lake City area. Ouch! Ask your self a few questions; “Do I need to take that? Do I need full tanks? Should I schedule morning flights vs mid day flights?” As the density altitude climbs, our air craft’s performance declines so consider all of the factors of performance and weight before you make a “go” decision.

Just for Flight Instructors

I said this is just for Flight Instructors so stop reading now Private Pilot person! Just kidding, please do read especially if one day you hope to be teaching in the cockpit.

I recently had the experience here in Utah of dealing with the Department of Consumer Affairs. Now this was not a negative experience by all means but a learning experience for me. I hope to pass on this information to help other instructors/future instructors be prepared.

I am a contracted, independent instructor. That means that flight schools, flying clubs, aircraft owners, etc, hire me to teach in their planes. As an instructor, I take my job seriously and therefore professionally as well. Thus I have a LLC entity as my business structure. I also have things that every instructor should have: a specific business email (not a personal one that all my friends have), a website, blog (optional), a dedicated phone number and a business banking account (it’s much harder to write off pilot supplies when you purchase them via your personal account).

Recently the Utah Department of Consumer Affairs sent me a letter thinking I was a flight school that charge tuition and took up front fees. Keep in mind that as I write this, every state may be different on their regulations. They were pleasant to work with and I simply had to fill out an exempt application stating I was not a Part 141 school that accepted payments in advance for training. Here in Utah we have had some shoddy flight schools file bankruptcy and get sued after accepting tens of thousands of students’ loan money and not providing the training they promised.

So in a nut shell, if you are a current CFI or planning on becoming one, check with your local government to see where you would fall under and if you may  need to establish your position in the aviation training community.