Learning to fly, or thinking of learning? Post your questions, comments and experiences here

Moderator: AndyR

By Guernsey Ben
Just introducing myself on here as I’m hoping to start some training in Guernsey in the spring.
I’m 42, I live on the island and always been really keen on aviation. I’m at the stage where I’m thinking it’s now or never, so last summer I booked a trial lesson and loved it. I’ve since been saving a bit of money over the winter and my plan is to take lessons up to solo level. If I’m still just as hooked after that I’ll carry on to full PPL.
One of things that has put me off doing it sooner is what I would do post PPL if I achieve it. I can’t afford CPL training so not doing this as a career, but purely for the enjoyment of flying. Whether I can afford to keep it up remains to be seen but I hope the experience of learning this skill will be most rewarding.
I’m hoping there may be some similar people to me in Guernsey who may also be interested in training this year that I could share experiences with. It would also be fun to find flying ‘buddies’ in Guernsey to share trips with after PPL. I’m sure this way you’re more likely to stay current and be a bit more adventurous as well as enjoying it more.
I guess that’s what the local clubs are for which I would need to join anyway. Just reaching out to see if there is anyone here from Guernsey in a similar position.....?
Also has anyone trained in Guernsey? If so, how did you find it?
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By Rob P

You are correct, best to start as soon as you can. Some people do indeed go to solo level and then give up, but the cross country navigation that follows is so much fun I'm sure you'll be tempted to keep going. I think the cross country from the CI tends to be flown over France for obvious reasons.

There are a couple of CI Flyers that pop up here from time to time, Jersey based. I haven't talked at length with them about flying from there, but I do know there are several syndicated cars kept at Cherbourg for the use of CI pilots.

Good luck with your training, do remember it's meant to be fun and work hard at enjoying it, rather than just 'getting through' to the licence.

Rob P
By Guernsey Ben
Thankyou Rob,
I agree, having read some of the sections on navigation it looks like fun, although flying in French airspace sounds quite daunting.
Thanks for the info/advice!
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By Rob P
Trust me, flying in French airspace is far from daunting. It's a total doddle compared to mainland UK.

Rob P
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By GolfHotel
Ben I would repeat what Rob says. Flying in France is a doddle compared to UK. The airspace looks dreadful but it all works well when you are there. Mainly due to a can do attitude. over there.
By Guernsey Ben
Thanks, It's reassuring to know that being as we are so close to France.
I guess the prospect of learning ATC communication is one of my bigger concerns and the thought of adding French accents into the mix just adds to that.
Sounds like fun once mastered though.
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By Miscellaneous
Guernsey Ben wrote:...ATC communication is one of my bigger concerns and the thought of adding French accents into the mix just adds to that.
Sounds like fun once mastered though.

I'd hazard a guess that since it's all new you'll just accept the French accents as the norm and when subsequently flying in mainland UK you'll find the controllers accents odd. :wink: :D
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By Guernsey Ben
Well, I had planned to start lessons at the beginning of May but, due to various reasons this was delayed until July.
Anyway, on Saturday I had my second lesson which was an introduction to circuits. the experience was very intense with so much to take in but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I managed to land a few times unassisted but it was not pretty. There was a light breeze directly accross the runway which didn't help things. I appreciate the patience of my instructor as I tried to process everything in my head.
One thing I need to do is memorize the downwind checks but I see there are many different mnemonic versions. Can anyone suggest which ones they use?
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By cjrpaterson
I was taught BUMPFITCH and haven't seen any reason to change. Some of these might be specific to type.

Brake (pedal has pressure, parking brake is off)
Undercarriage (down/fixed on everything I've flown)
Mixture (rich)
Propeller (pitch to fine)
Fuel (pump on, shut-off open, sufficient quantity remaining for an approach/go-around)
Instruments (QNH/QFE set, DI alligned, no warning lights)
Temperatures (all in the green)
Carb heat (on )
Hatches and harnesses (closed/tightened)
By Guernsey Ben
Feeling a bit frustrated at the moment. Had the last 3 out of 4 lessons cancelled due to weather so I've only managed 5 lessons in 2 months.....not great!
My instructor can only do Tuesdays and Saturdays so it limits it a bit. If it's like this in the middle of summer I don't fancy my chances as we head into autumn/winter!