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

Moderator: AndyR

By T6Harvard
I thought I'd post about positive things while awaiting my second lesson...

Have had my nose stuck in Pooley's etc - read, made notes, tried to explain things to MrT6* (on the basis that you only know if you have understood something if you can explain to someone else)!

*He has no interest in flying and is scared of maths and physics so he doesn't actually listen to me. Nothing new there :lol:

Took progress tests in the books and moved on to mock exams via Air quiz.

I started by concentrating on Human Performance, then Air Law, Op Procedures and Comms.

Human Performance -
As with most folk, I think, I found HP straight forward. Just need to be able to recall the TUC table and a few other memory feats of specific numbers ☺. My general knowledge and stuff from school came back easily and covers most of the syllabus. Consistent good passes followed.

Air Law - another memory feat but I have enjoyed finding out what the relevant law is, and what best practice is (weird, who said I was weird?).
Consistent good passes. Occasional lapses re the finer points of less-likely-to-encounter air space rules (am working on it!).

OP - Lots of 'common sense' safety etc. I still have to imagine actually flying to give the right answer on windshear questions! The hardest things for me to remember have been some of the marshalling and light signals. Am achieving consistent passes, mostly good.

Comms - hmmm. Lucky I was familiar with radio alphabet, came back to me quickly, so one less thing to embed. Obviously have not been able to practise for real yet. Have listened into to ATC round the world to help with the pattern but they are usually too quick. Found listening to YouTubes, esp The Flying Reporter a big help (thanks!). 'Attended' Irv's Zoom classes and that was great (thanks very much, Irv!). Will still be very nervous going live!! Am achieving consistent good passes, except for light signals.... still working in those.

Now I am starting on Principles of Flight - I had read up before my first lesson, which was definitely worth it but the detail is not embedded yet!
I find it fascinating, am happy to deal with the physics, but it will take more brain power to be able to explain it to MrT6 (ie, myself).

Took mock exams via Air Quiz. (*** Any other recommendations for mock exams?).
All wrong answers are pondered over, books referred to , internet searches done, until I understand the correct answer. Still a ways to go but I am trying hard.

Oh, and I also took advice from another forumite and bought a chart to study. It is surprising what you do learn from mini visits to things like charts and METAR. Am saving Nav and Met for later!!

So this is my non-flying journey so far. Very satisfying, a great stimulus, and I hope it will stand me in good stead when I finally get to the aerodrome.

Not the way I envisaged starting my student experience but hopefully something positive will come from lockdown.

BTW, I expect to struggle with Nav and Met! Am looking forward to Aircraft Techinical, because I will channel my dear grandad, a private pilot and war-time aircraft engineer. He'd love to be offering sage advice to one of his grandkids on his favourite topics.
johnm, JAFO, Rob P and 1 others liked this
User avatar
By Wicksay
Hey T6Harvard, so with school and college and uni were you naturally studious? It shows if you were and well, it seems that you've found your passion if studying is not so natural.

I definitely have to be submerged in the environment of the topic I am studying for it to have any chance of sinking in an being absorbed.

You'll need to pass airlaw first and only when you're ready to go solo - you can't solo without that. The others are good grounding but are easier to comprehend when you've got some hrs in the air.

I've jsu returned from Spain :-( so I have two weeks at home to tick off the list of jobs Mrs W has been dreaming up and rerunning my last flight into Southend Overhead a few times on my flight sim until I'm slicker at staying ahead of the aircraft. More on that in my de-briefing notes I'll publish soonest.

Good Luck with your next lessons. and I'm sure Mr T6 has one or two subjects he likes to talk about that roll your eyes :-)
T6Harvard liked this
By T6Harvard
Wicksay, you are doing brilliantly. I thought you were going to say you had been to Spain and flown loads!!
I suspect the sim helps a lot. Being a female of a certain age simming passed me by. Was I a girlie swot? Hmmm, more of a slogger. I had to work hard to get things fixed in my brain. I think, like most folk, if I find something that really interests me then I delve into it and absorb it much more easily. It's more fun and there is a readily understood point to it.

You are right, of course, MrT6 talks about several things I have no interest in. Several. Things. He doesn't really roll his eyes. He just sighs. He did take some good pics when I asked him to sit in the back of the C172 but he is not kean on doing it again. No idea why...

Nero, thanks for the tip about PPL Tutor. I did consider them, but plumped for Airquiz. Will sign up now. I know that it is easy to practice for the online exams without really getting the knowledge embedded but I'll use it to highlight gaps in learning. Got to be worth it for a few quid.
Flyin'Dutch' liked this
User avatar
By FlightDek
Wicksay wrote:You'll need to pass airlaw first and only when you're ready to go solo - you can't solo without that.

There's no law requiring Airlaw before going solo. Your school might insist on it, though, as their own rule
T6Harvard, JAFO liked this
By T6Harvard
Ooh, I like PPLTutor. Good instant explainers.

Bashed through some tests to see what their question bank was like. Got decent passes on familiar topics. Failed principles of flight but was pleased to even understand some of the words in some questions :D . Worst score was 50% (a big fail, of course! Got close to passing a few times ), but it gave me hope because I haven't opened the book since Feb when some, but not all of it got one read through.

I have a free day tomorrow so I'll start concentrating on LEARNING PoF.

I am also reading one of Mike Brookes' autobiographies so there is much talk of flight controls and a/c behaviour :mrgreen: I am enjoying it immensely.
User avatar
By lobstaboy
Rob P wrote:I'm thirty three years into my flying life and I've never seen a light signal

Rob P

I did once, at North Weald.
Tower: G- YZ can you see our light signal?
Me (heart in mouth wondering what I'd done wrong and no idea what it meant): Er, yes I can
Tower: Oh good, thanks, we just wanted to check if it's working ok.
Rob P, T6Harvard, Hazel C liked this
User avatar
By Flyin'Dutch'
Rob P wrote:I'm thirty three years into my flying life and I've never seen a light signal

Rob P

x1 at OW shone by no-one less than our own VAtco whilst flying in with Cub, from this parish.

Tiger tried taking off whilst I was landing the Citabria.

As an aside, as I had coped admirably (apparently) with the stonking crosswind on landing, I was granted permission by the powers that were to take off from the short but into wind runway, not available to guests normally.

T6Harvard liked this
By T6Harvard
t1m80 wrote:As per Andy R. I asked tower to show me lights during circuit practice which they very obligingly did. Still couldn't see them :-).

Are you sure they turned them on? Maybe they just SAID they had :lol:
t1m80 liked this