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Who thinks logbook padding O.K.?

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Member since 1967
Mar 2, 2002
Just wanting to vent,

An instructor I know prides himself with padding his logbook. At first, he was adding small amounts here and there. Now he is creating fictitious flights. We have instructed approximately the same number of months, but he has many more hours than I do. He also had a reputation at his last job as a "padder" I know it MIGHT come back and haunt him, but it probably won't.

I am proud of the small amount of time I have EARNED and this really bugs me.

I/we will be competing with this person for a job soon and he thinks it's funny!! I have heard pilots say "log what you must, fly what you can" Is this rampant in the industry? am I being naive?

Do we, as pilots have any recourse to squash this type of behavior? Should I just mind my own business?

Sorry for the rant, just frustrated I quess

What goes around comes around. Padding a logbook is like building hours rather than building experience. Hours are meaningless. When that person gets into the interview and the questions fly, and he gets in the sim, can he do the job?

The fact that this person flaunts his crime will catch up with him. The industry really is a small community.

Interviewers, good ones, can easily spot a falsified logbook. Those who do it are sometimes amazed and shocked, but a good interviewer won't disclose that the discrepancies have been found. He or she will quietly hand back the book, and complete the interview. And then it's done. Even a logbook which appears improper, can cause this to occur.

Everyone probably knows stories of folks who showed up at an interview with a padded book. Upon entering the interview, they're engaged in conversation with someone who asks about this airplane and that. After a time, the interviewee asks how the interviewer knows so much about that particular airplane. Easy, says the interviewer. I've owned it for fifteen years. How did you log time in my airplane?

What goes around, comes around. Bank on it.
Anybody that pads their logbook does it because they can't handle getting the time by experience...These are the types that always "wash-out" eventually...
Aviation is always said to be a very small place....you really have no idea how understated that is. You can count on either knowing somebody or being only one person removed from people you meet at interviews or ground schools. I was flying out of the same FBO as one of the other guys at my Lakes interview. I was flying at the same airline as 8 out of 12 at my Air Wisconsin interview. I lived a mile from the pilot interviewer at Air Wisconsin and we had flown out of the same gravel strip (ie he knew all the airplanes that I did). Just walking through the airport I see guys I went to flight school with who are now at different airlines. Don't burn bridges and don't be a jerk. It "always" comes back to haunt you in this extremely intimate profession.
Your flying skills should reflect the hours in your log book or your logbook may come under severe scrutiny. A pilot that worked at my former employer was fired by EJA when after failing a Captain upgrade at Flight Safety they discovered fake flights, extra hours, etc. EJA found out when they contacted the pilots former chief pilot and compared hours flown with the company records.
I barely know what to say to people who pad their logbooks, except to just sit there with a blank look and quietly stew. I am afraid that I know more than a handful of pilots who have done it, and it erases most of the respect I have for each of the individuals in question. The truth is I know three jet captains at a large regional (not to mention at least three others) who lied their way into their jobs (doubling and even tripling their actual ME time to meet then-current minimums), and I am much happier to have REAL time in my book and a job in a prop.

I am sure they are happier with their bigger paychecks, but I am happier with MYSELF knowing that the time in my book reflects actual flight time. It cost me probably an extra year instructing than if I'd had no scruples, but so be it.

I know a captain at Delta that had one of his fellow Delta pilots get fired when they found out he'd lied in his logbook... Apparently they investigated him after an "incident" and discovered he'd logged a couple of hundred hours in a King Air that had crashed and burned four years before his first alleged flight in said airplane... And in the same breath, the same captain encouraged me to pencil-whip my logbook to get a regional job. Let's just say I listened to the first part of what he said and discarded the second.
I know a guy who is about to upgrade who doesn't have the time he claims to. He said he flew a certain type before, and someone who also flew this model said that he never flew one. Now, after being here the same time as I have, he suddenly built about 1000 more hours than I did in the same amount of time. He is also a very strange bird. I hope he gets caught, but fear there is nothing I could ever do about it.

I guess I'm glad I never did this. I'm sure he will be looking over his shoulder for the rest of his life. I wouldn't like that, myself.
My best interview story is from logbook padding.

The candidate had about 200 some hours of B1900 time in his logbook. We flew B1900's and I thought that was great - a guy that will have little trouble with training! But, I am a bit of a skeptic so asked a few questions.

Me: "What model 1900 did you fly?"

Him: "Beechcraft"

Me: "right, I mean like C model, D model...?"

Him: "Uhhh, the C model."

Me:"Was that the one with the Sperry autopilot and the all glass cockpit?"

Him:" Yeah."

Me: "Side stick fly by wire, right?"

Him: "I don't remember."

Me:"What model APU did it have?"

Him: "I forget, but I remember how to start it."

Me:"Which engines did yours have, the garretts?"

Him: "Yes. Turboprop."

Me:"And what was your top cruise speed, about 400 knots?"

Him: "Yeah, I think that's right. It's really fast."

Me:" You never have flown the 1900, have you?"

Him:" Uhhh, well I have some right seat time in one."

Me: "Thank you for coming in."

Man, now THAT is a great story. :)

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