A Record of important things…

Finally the Ticket!!!

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Finally and at long last!  As of this afternoon the key words “ROTORCRAFT HELICOPTER” are now added to my ticket.  I ended up spending far more time in training to get my helicopter license than my fixed wing.  I logged about 65 hours in training to get here.

The exam and checkride process was very detailed.  About 2 hours talking helicopters for the oral portion, and 1.4 in the air.  Very thorough.  We must have gone through every maneuver in the book.  The most challenging was the surprise power cut on downwind.  Had to do an auto “for real”. Decide where to go and execute.  I elected to do a 180 auto back to the runway based on where I was - and it all worked out OK, though the added second of recognition when it is a “surprise” allows the rotor RPMs to drop a lot lower than when you’re doing them for practice.  That was an eye opener.  I caught it in time, and the 180 degree turn helped bring the RPMs back up quickly.  It even surprised me just how automatic lowering the collective was. Once I got over the “Hey, you can’t do that...” reaction.

Much like the fixed wing license, I am quite conscious that simply holding the license does not make me an expert, but merely minimally competent and equipped with the tools to help prevent me from doing myself in while piloting one of these unlikely machines.

I will try to stay current, but will definitely be back for a bunch more training prior to attempting to pilot the Helicycle.