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Thread: Instructor wanted

  1. #1
    Moderator Adison's Avatar
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    Default Instructor wanted

    I am looking for an instructor to help me finish my ppl. I started flying back in the airforce at the aero club in 1990 and have accumulated alot of hours over the years but never finished. I have almost 100 hours and various aircraft including multi-engine time and float time in my logbook. I soloed back in 2004 and got some cross country flights. I am an A&P mechanic by trade so I know my way around an airplane pretty well. Money and family got in the way so I dropped out but the dream has never died. Now I am single and the kids are grown so I want to finish what I started. My work schedule is very unconventional so I am looking for someone who can be flexible and work around it. If any of you are instructors and can help me out, send me a PM or reply to the thread and I will contact you. Thanks in advance!
    Adison
    I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy!
    Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice, remember life is expensive and ammo is cheep!

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    I wish you the best of luck! I have been trying to no avail to find an instructor to help me finish too. I originally started flying back in 98 and had to quit due to family. I started again in April of this year and by June was ready for my checkride minus the night requirement. I scheduled it and the weather closed in so it did not happen. I work on the slope and seemed to catch the crappy weather everytime I came in. I have tried for the last 2 of my R&R's to find an instructor to help me finish. Specialized training is everywhere, Floats, Tailwheel, Etc. looks like the private ticket is the hardest to get now. I am looking into going outside to a "pilot mill" to get finished. I know getting a license up here holds more prestige than one from outside, but begging for a service your paying for is rediculous. Unless you own your own plane I suspect you are going to find it all but impossible to finish here. Just letting you know your not alone!

  3. #3

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    I'm actually not in Alaska, but I believe your laws are the same as ours - It might not be as simple as hiring an instructor. Here you can't just freelance to do commercial work of any kind including instructing, an instructor would need their own air operator certificate to work under, or it would have to be done through an approved training organisation who would already have an AOC. I may be wrong, but check it out anyway.

    Good luck to both of you.

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    I am a Flight Instructor, with lots of Alaska time, the problem is I am in CT right now, I don't have an airplane to teach in at this time. It would not be worth while for me to travel to Alaska to finish up two students. There is a Flight school over at Merrill. They should be able to get you done. The other thing is that you could go to one of the Florida Flight Schools and finish up. I did some training at Sowell's in Panama City, Take Feb and go finish it up. Get out of the Cold and Dark for a couple of weeks. A pilot certificate dose not say done in Alaska or Florida. Alaska is a tough place for a pilot to make a living, let along as a flight instructor.

  5. #5
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    ..an instructor would need their own air operator certificate to work under, or it would have to be done through an approved training organization who would already have an AOC. I may be wrong,
    You are. Free lance CFIs work just fine here in the Republic.

    Addison:

    I do that sort of thing, but I am down in Homer. You also might want to check with Mustang Air out in Palmer.
    It is sometimes easier to get your own plane and have a free-lance CFI sign you off or give instruction as it fits into your schedule.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
    Experimental Hand-Loader, NRA Life Member
    http://site.dragonflyaero.com

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    Mustang Air doesn't exist anymore. Artic's Air Academy http://www.articsairacademy.com/ took over (bought) that operation in Palmer more than a year ago. www.takeflightalaska.com is another at Merrill Field in Anchorage. Aero Tech http://www.aerotechalaska.com/index_no_flash.html, also at Merrill Field is another. Heidei Ruess at http://www.arcticflyers.biz/ and her son, Rick, have been providing flight instruction on floats and in tail draggers for decades out of Lake Hood and the Lake Hood Air strip in Anchorage. There are a couple of "bush flying" flight schools out of Talkeetna, and another at the Wolf Lake airport. These are several options.

    In my opinion, you would be best off taking your last few hours toward your private pilots license from an FAA approved flight school rather than from a free-lance flight instructor who may not be totally up-to-date on current stuff. An FAA approved flight school will be able to prepare you with up-to-date instruction for the oral exam and check ride .

  7. #7
    Member algonquin's Avatar
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    not to start a battle, but I disagree with the about post. Most schools are filled with low time and inexperienced pilots building time. This isn't to say that the instructors aren't good and completely compentent instructors, because they are. On the other hand to say an instructor isn't current or up to date because he doesn't work for a school is baseless. I teach because I love flying and teaching and have been doing so for over 30 years as many "free-lance" guys do. They offer a wide span of experience to give the student a better understanding of why they are doing the training that they are doing. When I teach, the oral exsam and check ride are the last thing I worry about. we should all be training to the same standards, its writen in the book. In conclusion, training for a check ride or oral is the poorest way to teach. just M2C

  8. #8
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    Most schools are filled with low time and inexperienced pilots building time.
    Roger that...
    Back when I went out of State to do my CFI rating, it was as if I had been dropped off at a high school. I had more hours than all of their instructors. Most had just come out of the UND program or something similar. All were hoping to be airline pilots when they grew up. The school was getting 35 bucks and hour, but these quasi alcoholic juveniles were only getting $12 or $15 an hour. The only flying interest they expressed was for me to teach them how to fly tail-wheel.

    Finally I found an old Air Racer lady who, as it trun3d out,,,, had flown for Howard Hughes.
    Occasionally she would point out some land mark or business and say something about a somebody named Howard... It did not register with me until a few weeks later when I went out to lunch with a younger female CFI. ( I reminded her of her dad)
    We went up the stairs to the restarunt in the old North Las Vegas tower and there were photos of my CFI instructor back when she was very young, standing there with Howard Hughes when he opened up the airport in 1941. It was Thunderbird Air port back then...
    The young gal looked at me and said, "There's Kathleen , didn't you know she was an Air Racer working for Howard Hughes?"

    That old gal could fly the box that shipped the wing assembly.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
    Experimental Hand-Loader, NRA Life Member
    http://site.dragonflyaero.com

  9. #9

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    I agree with Monguse. There are a number of flight schools in Anchorage and Palmer. I think that would be your best bet - they are always open, have several aircraft ready to fly, and instructors on standby. Rick and Heidei Ruess instruct out or Lake Hood, and there are at least three flight schools out of Merrill - Take Flight Alaska, Aero Tech Flight Services, and Land and Sea Aviation. I trained in all of them and recommend Ruess's, or Aero Tech, or Land and Sea. Another alternative is to join Elmendorf Flying Club (http://www.elmendorfaeroclub.com/). The cost is $25/month + hourly rate for aicraft use and you have access to a lot of good planes including C172, C172RG, C172 on floats, C182 and a multiengine (PA34-200T). They also have a bunch of instructors available.

    Good luck with your rating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Monguse View Post
    Mustang Air doesn't exist anymore. Artic's Air Academy http://www.articsairacademy.com/ took over (bought) that operation in Palmer more than a year ago. www.takeflightalaska.com is another at Merrill Field in Anchorage. Aero Tech http://www.aerotechalaska.com/index_no_flash.html, also at Merrill Field is another. Heidei Ruess at http://www.arcticflyers.biz/ and her son, Rick, have been providing flight instruction on floats and in tail draggers for decades out of Lake Hood and the Lake Hood Air strip in Anchorage. There are a couple of "bush flying" flight schools out of Talkeetna, and another at the Wolf Lake airport. These are several options.

    In my opinion, you would be best off taking your last few hours toward your private pilots license from an FAA approved flight school rather than from a free-lance flight instructor who may not be totally up-to-date on current stuff. An FAA approved flight school will be able to prepare you with up-to-date instruction for the oral exam and check ride .

  10. #10
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    It's really nice to find an old experienced instructor with his own airplane with the necessary insurance policy and decades of experience, but, unless that instructor is current with FAA regs, the best he/she can do is show you techniques that don't necessarily conform to the requirements necessary for your FAA oral and practical flight tests.

    Once you have acquired your private license, then a free-lance instructor can add immense and quickly-gained skills to your burgeoning capabilities...stuff not required on an FAA oral or check ride.

    My 33 years of all-season Alaska flying (wheels, skis and floats), included gaining really useful techniques from pilots much younger than me, who taught me techniques for dealing with scenarios not addressed in an FAA check ride.

    Your best bet for getting your license is an FAA authorized flight school. My best recommendation for you is Arctic flyers http://home.gci.net/~rruess/ at Lake Hood. Hermann Ruess (deceased) his wife, Heidi and son Rick have been giving flight instruction for float ratings and tail dragger endorsements for decades. So, with them, you have the best of both worlds, both long-time instructors with their own airplanes, up-to-date with FAA parameters, but also able to teach you some skills necessary to accomplish demanding landings and takeoffs under unusual circumstances.

    A few of the long-time pilots who used to fly for Ketchum (Ketchum is no longer in business) have an arsenal of float flying tricks that have never been addressed by anything to do with FAA check rides...landings and take offs on the 4 to 12 inch deep duck-cabin mud ponds across Cook Inlet from Anchorage without getting stuck (requires large gonads) ...casting off by yourself in a heavy beaver, hard aground, with no outside help from the sandy shallows of a fast running river. Landing and then before coming to a stop, positioning yourself for take off from a steep glacier, landing and taking off in ocean swell...etc. There is a whole lot more.

    So get your license, then start learning and avoid feelings of arrogance.

    Pass the tests and then find an old instructor to show you some tricks.

  11. #11
    Moderator Adison's Avatar
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    As I stated in my original post, I work really unconventional hours with my job. Basically, I work whenever there is a plane on the ground here in ANC or EAFB. If there are no planes, then I am free to do whatever I want. That is why I am looking for an instructor who is flexable with their time and willing to help me finish up. I know about the local flight schools up here. In fact, I was the director of the maintenance department at Take Flight Alaska for several years. I'm not looking to learn some new tricks on floats or short field procedures, just someone to help me finish up my requirements. I know there must be someone out there that can spend a day with me cramming my brain with all the stuff I've forgotten over the years and willing to fly a couple of days to knock the rust off me.
    Adison
    I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy!
    Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice, remember life is expensive and ammo is cheep!

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    I would really recommend Elmendorf's Aeroclub. If you still have access to the base, and according to your post you do, then you can join. That is where I'm training. You schedule yourself through Flight Schedule Pro and several of the CFIs are flexible...weekends, evenings. There are a few students who use two of the CFIs in order to fit a schedule. The instructors work well together and are all supportive of the student. Several of them have already flown heavy metal and are not looking to build hours. Those who are building hours have been at it for five and six years so they are not "high schoolers just out of training". The airline industry is slow to hire right now so they are doing what they love to do...fly. IT really is a great place. Plus, the planes are hangared so preflight is done inside! Safety is stressed and the maintenance on the planes is by the book. Look into it. Tell them Pam sent you!

  13. #13
    Moderator Adison's Avatar
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    Passed my medical exam yesterday with flying colors. Waiting for my Gleim kit to come in so I can start studying again. Next stop, some refresher time to knock the rust off and get the feel again. Look out everyone, I'm gonna be on my own soon!
    I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy!
    Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice, remember life is expensive and ammo is cheep!

  14. #14

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    http://www.alaskafloats.com/index.php

    one of the best in this area--Don is his name and he is good!
    I give thanks to the vetrans, as they have aided in my priviledge to hunt and fish the great State of AK. and alow me to sleep safely at night.

  15. #15
    Member RocketRick's Avatar
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    Adison,

    PM me and I'll give ya the name of the two. One is who I'm gonna use later this year for some more training. He's a heck of a lot cheaper then all the others and flies commercially here in Ak. & outside sometimes.

    Rick

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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    Roger that...
    Back when I went out of State to do my CFI rating, it was as if I had been dropped off at a high school. I had more hours than all of their instructors. Most had just come out of the UND program or something similar. All were hoping to be airline pilots when they grew up. The school was getting 35 bucks and hour, but these quasi alcoholic juveniles were only getting $12 or $15 an hour. The only flying interest they expressed was for me to teach them how to fly tail-wheel.

    Finally I found an old Air Racer lady who, as it trun3d out,,,, had flown for Howard Hughes.
    Occasionally she would point out some land mark or business and say something about a somebody named Howard... It did not register with me until a few weeks later when I went out to lunch with a younger female CFI. ( I reminded her of her dad)
    We went up the stairs to the restarunt in the old North Las Vegas tower and there were photos of my CFI instructor back when she was very young, standing there with Howard Hughes when he opened up the airport in 1941. It was Thunderbird Air port back then...
    The young gal looked at me and said, "There's Kathleen , didn't you know she was an Air Racer working for Howard Hughes?"

    That old gal could fly the box that shipped the wing assembly.
    That's why I've always favored the older, moss-back instructors. Most of them were flying back when flying was still the aviation.

  17. #17
    Moderator Adison's Avatar
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    Update! I passed my written exam today with a 93% score! I have flown a couple of hours of dual to get back into the feel of things again and got my solo endorsement again. Now to complete my remaining 2.7 hours of solo cross country time and prep for the check ride! Yeeee Hawww! Feeling like a pilot already!.......Well, almost! :-)
    I carry a gun because a cop is too heavy!
    Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice, remember life is expensive and ammo is cheep!

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    Quote Originally Posted by onebadjudge70 View Post
    I wish you the best of luck! I have been trying to no avail to find an instructor to help me finish too. I originally started flying back in 98 and had to quit due to family. I started again in April of this year and by June was ready for my checkride minus the night requirement. I scheduled it and the weather closed in so it did not happen. I work on the slope and seemed to catch the crappy weather everytime I came in. I have tried for the last 2 of my R&R's to find an instructor to help me finish. Specialized training is everywhere, Floats, Tailwheel, Etc. looks like the private ticket is the hardest to get now. I am looking into going outside to a "pilot mill" to get finished. I know getting a license up here holds more prestige than one from outside, but begging for a service your paying for is rediculous. Unless you own your own plane I suspect you are going to find it all but impossible to finish here. Just letting you know your not alone!
    Addison,

    Call Jamie. He's a nice guy and commercial pilot. I've flown with him twice. Good on emergencies too.

    He flies mostly out of B'wwod I think.

    C - 306-7024.

    Good Luck,

    Rick

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adison View Post
    Update! I passed my written exam today with a 93% score! I have flown a couple of hours of dual to get back into the feel of things again and got my solo endorsement again. Now to complete my remaining 2.7 hours of solo cross country time and prep for the check ride! Yeeee Hawww! Feeling like a pilot already!.......Well, almost! :-)
    Congrats and nice work.

  20. #20
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    Woohoo! I know how you feel. Where did you end up going for training?

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