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Is buying (non-PFT) bad?

Vik

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I am finishing up my commercial rating and was planning on getting my CFI. I have also been looking at non-aviation job offers on the side since I am a computer geek. I have the possibility of getting a full time, 40hr/week job that pays pretty well.

Would it look bad during an interview with the regionals if they found out that I had bought a cheap Cessna 152 and just flown it instead of becoming a CFI?

I think I could fly it 50hrs+/month which is about what the average CFI logs in dual flight instruction per month.

I don't know if this is a wise decision. I don't want the airlines to think I'm some "rich kid" whose daddy bought him a plane to build time. I've read a lot of messages on here and other msg boards of people wanting to buy large blocks of multi time. If there is nothing wrong with that, would it be wrong for me to do this?

I wouldn't mind CFIing. In fact, I think I would love the job. I might still get my CFI and do it part time on the weekends.
 

bobbysamd

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Buying time

The commuters like to see that you built up time by working. Nothing wrong with renting a plane for some pleasure flying from time to time, but more pleasure flying than revenue time is a negative, and for the "rich kid" connotation you mentioned. Probably the H.R. coneheads wouldn't care that much, but pilots review logbooks at interviews and they'll notice.

I don't see a real negative if one buys a block of multi to fly off to make the underwriter happy, but only enough to make him happy. Multi PIC earned through employment is worth its weight in gold.

Get your CFI and go to work. If you already feel that you love it, you probably will. Good luck with your plans.
 

Caveman

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Get your CFI and buy the 152. That way you can build quality time instructing, make enough money as a part time independent CFI to pay for the plane, keep your day job to pay the bills, build more TT by flying yourself, and lease back the 152 to the FBO when you are ready to move up.
 

Timebuilder

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I'd buy a plane in decent shape, with a mid-time engine and lease it back to the flight school. Don't buy a piece of junk. Instruct, and fly it yourself for business or pleasure. Unless you go to a big school to teach, you will have 4 to 8 hours every day to HTML to your heart's content for a long time when you start instructing. A thinkpad with a wireless modem and you're off and running.

Example: Bob, the hiring guy at Airnet Express, says to have lots of time as an INSTRUCTOR for top consideration, and RECENT time, at that.

Good luck.
 

English

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Buy the airplane AND flight instruct. I did it that way and it actually helped me. There was no rich kid syndrome. I bought an airplane (with two other partners) and flew Angel Flight missions and did a ton of Young Eagles flights to give myself something worthwhile to do over the usual $100 hamburger. I did cross country trips to all the places I read about in the various aviation magazines as well. So, during interviews, I was able to discuss not only my flight instructing background but also aspects of my volunteer work. My enthusiasm for flying came across as I described all the cool places I had flown to. lus, by the time of my first regional interview I already had international flying experience (ok well, it was only Mexico and Canada, but it was a start!).

Besides, didn't you get into flying because you love to fly? You will learn more about flying from instructing, but you also need to get your hands on the airplane and actually do it. If you only instruct and don't fly, you'll get rusty.

If you can afford it, buy an airplane. I wouldn't recommend instructing in it, though, unless you want the added expense of the 100 hour inspections and insurance.

Buying an airplane is not pay-for-training. Let that one go.
 

Vik

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A lot of people have told me that flight instructing makes you a better pilot. They of course didn't know I wanted to buy an airplane or buy time but I think they were making an argument for becoming a CFI.

I was just thinking, how could teaching people to fly make you a better pilot than actually being at the controls yourself?
 

sstearns2

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.......

>I was just thinking, how could teaching people to fly make you a >better pilot than actually being at the controls yourself?

Instructing doesn't really improve your motor skills per se. It puts you in a lot of situations you wouldn't get yourself into, but you'll now have to get yourself out of. Instrument instructing is where you'll learn the most. Probably the most significant 'skill' you'll gain is how to maintain situational awareness as the pilot not flying. Also you'll learn how to 'negotiate' with ATC to get what you want.

Anyhow, you'll be surprised by how much you learn by watching and teaching.

Scott
 

FLYnMONKEYS

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Vik said:
.

I was just thinking, how could teaching people to fly make you a better pilot than actually being at the controls yourself?

In order to teach something you must know it. Evaluating another pilot's performance is a necessary skill for instructing and a requirement in a two person cockpit. You learn something during every lesson. Being a CFI also teaches you the patience required as to not be "that Captain" everybody hates to fly with.

I would also say if I had a decision to hire an exCFI or someone who just tooled around to building time (everything else the same), I would go with the exCFI.

I've flown with pilots at the regional level that built time in their own aircraft, I could tell. But then again both of them made it to UAL in record time......oh, maybe it was their perfume:)
 

Timebuilder

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Vik

Use the search function, and read some of the posts that Bobysamd and I have written about the value of instructing in making one a better pilot. Just type in our usernames on the right side of the page and you'll see a list of what we have posted. The gist is this: I learned more about flying in the first 100 hours of instructing than I had learned in all of the time previous to that.

If you still have questions, PM me.
 

kilomike

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Buy that 152!

Hello Vik,

I think it's a great idea to buy a 152. I also encourage you to get your CFI. Flight instruction will improve your communication skills as you will need to explain the same thing in different ways to your students. Instructing and also going on cross country trips, or as posted above, Young Eagles and/or Angel Flight trips is a winning combination. It will show employment in aviation, but also your enthusiasm for flying as an aircraft owner. Also if an airline career does not work out, you would still have an aircraft to enjoy flying and of course flight instruction can be a great weekend job.

Fly safe, and enjoy that 152!:)

kilomike
 

mar

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It's the repetition

Hey Vik--First of all, congratulations on moving onto the commercial. I've been following your progress for the last couple of years I guess and you're moving right along.

:D

The thing about being a professional pilot is that even though it seems like you're just flying from Point A to Point B you're really always training. You're always trying to be the most current and proficient you can be.

In my humble opinion, simply drilling holes in the sky and burning up avgas is a waste of time.

You're smart, you're driven, you'd probably make a great CFI.

Do it!

Do it because you never really know anything until you've had to teach it. Do it because the repetition will instill in you a confidence that will come across during an interview or sim evaluation.

You will be the master of the steep turn; the master of slow flight.

Do it because it puts you in a leadership position. It teaches you organization and priorities.

It's a myth that the CFI never touches the controls. You demonstrate a manuever and then let the student try it. Not only that but giving unusual attitudes are a blast!

I know you've been pluggin away really hard to finish your degree and get your ratings and get your career started. It's gonna happen one way or another. Take my word on it. But in the meantime, why don't you get paid for building hours instead of paying for them? Approach it philosophically.

Let me tell you this and then I'll stop harping on you: When I fly with another pilot I can always tell who was a flight instructor and who simply drilled holes in the sky.

Best wishes
 

172driver

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CFI's have the luxury of being able to watch rather than fly. Yes, we would all rather be controlling the plane but you would be amazed at how much you learn when you're not saturated with tasks. You see all those small mistakes you used to make when you were fixated on other tasks in the cockpit. Watching students, whether they're performing beautifully or screwing things up, makes you learn more than you ever could by flying the plane yourself. Especially the small things. Of course, you then have to practice what you've learned. Buy the plane and instruct if you can afford it.

I second timebuilder. I learned more in my hrs as a CFI than I ever did as a student. Hard to believe but definitely true.
 

surplus1

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Vik said:

I was just thinking, how could teaching people to fly make you a better pilot than actually being at the controls yourself?

You're getting a lot of good advice but here's another 2 cents in direct response to your question.

Manipulating the controls is a basic motor skill and the simplest part of being a "better pilot". Any idiot can learn that when you push, the buildings get bigger and when you pull they get smaller.

Being a competent professional pilot is not about being a good "stick man" (though that doesn't hurt), it's about responsibility, judgement, analysis, situational awareness, patience, knowledge of and adherence to rules, procedures, etc., all things that being an instructor will help you to learn.

Whether you teach in an airplane you own (and maybe lease back as others suggested) or one that belongs to the flight school doesn't really matter.

If you decide to teach, keep this in mind. Our system is upside down, in that the least experienced among us are the one's teaching others most of what we ourselves have yet to really learn. Unfortunately, it's the only system we have. As others have suggested, I guarantee that when you begin as an instructor, you will learn far more than you teach. So remember, never get cocky.

Have at it and best wishes for achieving you goals.
 
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