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CFI or C-550?

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New member
Jan 3, 2002
I am a brand new CFI. I have an opportunity to sit in the right seat of a corporation's Cessna Citation II (C-550). This opportunity may also include the ability to operate a Cessna 210 PIC and even a light twin. Some flight instruction on the side may also be possible. However, taking this job might mean giving up my spot in line as a flight instructor at a reputable 141 school.

My questions are as follows. First of all, is it even legal to log SIC time in a C-550 with a captain that has his single pilot waiver but not his ATP or MEI. There seems to be a little controversy surronding this issue. I have spoken with individuals at Flight Safety, Simuflight, and the local FSDO, and have met with mixed replies. Second, how would a regional look at the bulk of my time being SIC in a C-550?
Can you please clarify...how can a citation pilot typed with single pilot authorization NOT have an ATP? Are you sure about this?
To answer English's question, you don't need to be an ATP to be typed in a Citation II/SP.

For Rfgrabb. To begin with, how do you figure you can log the time as SIC? I'll bet this C-550 is being operated under either Part 91 or Part 135. If it's operated under Part 91, you can log the time only when you're solo manipulator of the controls. When the other pilot is flying you'll just be a passenger, since the aircraft is being operated single pilot. Now, if the aircraft is operated 135 the situation is worse. You can only log SIC time if your an approved SIC required by the company. So you'll need a 135 SIC checkout, plus, the operator has to require that two pilots be onboard the aircraft, even though it is being operated single pilot. So basically take a real good look at how you plan to log the time. Most interviewers are going to take a real close look at Citation time when the pilot has only 250 hours.

If the 141 school you're talking about teaching at is Flight Safety, I would say go that route. You'll get plenty of multi, and time logged as a MEI is very valuable.
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I just posted a response similar to this under another thread, but here goes...

I agree with you 100%, that one cannot log SIC time in the situation given unless the SIC is required in the regulations under which the flight is being operated (part 135 in this case), and the SIC is fully qualified under part 135. The regionals will frown on anyone with 300 hours logging Citation time as SIC time. Rfgrabb, you cannot qualify to act as an "SIC" (a term really used for 135 and 121 operations) with your flight time. You might consider logging it under total time to use it as a basis for discussion about how you are gaining experience in new aircraft and flight environments, but I wouldn't use it for proof of experience. If you try that, you are opening up all kinds of questions about the systems that you just won't be able to answer if you haven't gone throught he proper training for the aircraft.

As far as anyone logging PIC while being the sole manipulator of the controls, I wouldn't do it unless I was typed in the aircraft and was designated by my company as the PIC for that particular flight, whether part 91, 135 or 121.

My background, up until recently, was regional airline-oriented. It's very clear that the major airlines are only interested in PIC time that is accumulated by a "designated" PIC. But I'm finding that in the corporate world, PIC time logged by a typed flying pilot is acceptable. Since most of what is done in corporate flying is dictated by the insurance company, they accept the definition of "sole manipulator" time when determining PIC time.
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EVERYONE that matters where you're heading, e.g. commuters, wants PIC time and PIC multi time. If you are raising questions in your mind if you can log the Citation SIC time legally, chances are others will, too. The 141 school sounds like a sure thing. I'd stay put.

I wouldn't place much stock in promises the place might make if it should say it will send you to FlightSafety or someplace for SIC training or to by typed eventually. There are more broken promises in aviation than you can shake a stick at.

Good luck with your decision.
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English said:
As far as anyone logging PIC while being the sole manipulator of the controls, I wouldn't do it unless I was typed in the aircraft and was designated by my company as the PIC for that particular flight, whether part 91, 135 or 121.

My mistake. If it's an aircraft that requires a type rating then the original poster can't log the time even on 91 legs unless he gets typed. See 61.31a.

EDIT: I meant cannot log it as PIC, SIC is ok under 61.55.
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This operation has to be 91 as you cannot operate a turbo-jet under 135 without an ATP. There are certain restrictions to a single-pilot waiver in a citation and he may not always choose to "operate" single pilot. As long as you satisfy the req.'s of a Part 91 SIC (61.55) which include some ground school and 3 TOL's, you can act as AND LOG SIC time IAW with the FAR's. Clarify with the captain as to whether or not he will agree to give you the proper training and then operate the aircraft as a 2 pilot operation, if not forget it. I'd ride along sometimes for the experience (and jets are fun) but wouldn't pass up the 141 school for it.

Another thing to consider is whether or not there is a possibility for an upgrade someday. Usually AIG (which is basically the judge, jury, and jailer of corporate aviation insurance) will not allow a jet captain with less than 3000TT and 500 in type (among other req.'s) without out a large increase in the premium. As an earlier post stated, insurance is to 91 what OP Spec.'s are to 121/135.

Whatever your decision, I'd have all my ducks lined up before I commited to anything. It's easy to be tempted as a lot-timer into something like this even though it may not be the best idea. I knew a guy that gave up a good CFI job to fly right-seat in a King Air 200 a company was buying. He burned the bridge with the flight school, pissed a bunch of people off, and didn't care because he was on his way to ME Turbine time. Then, they backed out of the King Air and bought a Pilatus. No twin time, no future, no past.....oops. Good luck.
You CAN log SIC

I've had experience with this exact situation. I worked with the operator of a Cessna CitationJet (CE525) while I was in college. As posted above, as long as you meet the requirements of 61.55, you can log SIC. The reg spells it out fairly clear. I also logged the time I flew before the checkout was complete. However, I did not log either PIC or SIC and the Captain was Single pilot certified and was not an MEI. I just logged it as part of my total time.

How did this hold up in an airline interview? Given the explanation above, not one interviewer has ever pressed the issue beyond the questions of how did you acquire this time? and what was the criteria you used for logging this time? Basically, if you leave the PIC and SIC column blank, I don't think it would matter that much as most pilots and recruiters know of the ways that we as pilots strive to get to our dream jobs. I also think they can tell if someone is being used to warm a seat (no flame intended).

So, If you want the jet, go for it. If you want to instruct, go for it. If you want to try and do both, really go for it. Whichever one you choose not to do, drop me a PM and let me know because I am out of my airline job right now.

Best of Luck,

Ok, so if you're not the PIC, you're not the SIC, and you aren't recieving instruction... How are you logging it as total time? It seems to me that by this criterion, a totally unrated non-pilot can log total time while illegally flying an airplane. This time that you'd be logging is essentially the same as letting your buddy take the controls for awhile on a "lunch flight." Basically, assuming you can find a justification for legally logging the time, you are at the very least admitting to illegally flying a turbojet aircraft without a type rating.
Also, I just read 61.55, which would allow you to log SIC if you met the requirements, but you would need significant training that I'm not sure your company would go through the expense of providing if they can fly it with just one pilot.

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