View Full Version : R/T Oral
29th Jul 2003, 06:11
I have booked my R/T Oral exam recently. The examiner kindly gave me a rundown of the areas that are likely to arise, all of which I am happy with in terms of the required phraseology.
However, I am just wondering if anyone who has done the practical can give a brief description of how the test actually runs i.e. do you just sit there and blurt out all the calls (unlikely I expect!) or do you have to sit with a log and timer?
I just need a little bit of guidance...
Thanks in advance.
29th Jul 2003, 08:22
Mine basically ran like this.
Got there, done the writen test first, then used the Seneca simulator for the oral (just sat in it with instructor behind me and changed frequences etc).
To start with she gave me the details of the flight, the route etc etc and you have I think 30 minutes to study it and write down notes about the flight (u can write down anything you like about it, or I was allowed anyway) the hardest thing I found was the callsign hehe, my plane I trained in was G-DIAT and on the test i was flying (albeit simulated) G-GCFM so I got in a bit of a mucking fuddle with that lol, all I did was leave controlled airspace, then was unsure of position and had to ask, (I dialed up 121.5 for this) then asked for QDM and true bearing, then had a pan pan call, (which I think was a throttle stuck open) then I had a mayday call, then joined controlled airspace for left hand downwind etc etc but a plane splat on the runway so she asked if i wanted to divert or hold, I said divert to diversion aerodrome (which is on the plan) she then said rwy clear would I like to continue to unplanned diversion or return to aerodrome, I returned to aerodrome and that was it, I passed it.
I was stressed out before my exam but I must say I found it quite easy,
Hope this helps
29th Jul 2003, 09:17
Thanks for that...
All being well I'll be able to take all my forms to Aviation House and start the wait for the 'real' bit of paper...
29th Jul 2003, 16:44
Do you just sit there and blurt out all the calls (unlikely I expect!) or do you have to sit with a log and timer?No - you just sit there and blurt out the calls. Really! Unless it's changed in the last couple of years...
One thing which I was told catches a lot of people is that you have to make the first call. Just like real life - you start up, and then you request taxi - you don't wait for the controller to speak to you. After that, the controller will reply, and eventually you get cleared to take off and turn en-route. Then you pause before doing whatever it is that you have to do next. The pause is really just to get your head around it - it doesn't have to timed or anything like that. So the whole thing runs at exactly the speed you want it to run at - which makes it very easy.
The only things you'll come across which aren't familiar are emergencies and Special VFR, and the unrealisticness of the whole thing! For the emergencies, I was given a rough-running engine - the examiner played a "buzz" sound, which he explained before we started mean that my engine was running rough. He then explained that shortly afterwards he'd play the "buzz" sound again, and the second buzz meant that my engine had miraculously cured itself. Like I said, this is not realistic! I also had to relay a Mayday. Again, the examiner told me beforehand what would happen. He played a recording of a Mayday. After hearing the Mayday, I was supposed to wait an appropriate amount of time before "realising" that ATC hadn't heard it and weren't going to reply, before relaying them the details of the emergency.
The whole thing would have been very funny if it wasn't actually an exam! Nothing to worry about....
29th Jul 2003, 16:50
Make sure you have the Mayday and Pan calls off pat. You don't get a second chance if you screw them up.
Other than that it isn't too difficult. Just remember that very useful phrase, "Say again?"
29th Jul 2003, 20:00
Yeah, make sure you're good on emergency calls. Also helps if you try and visualise what's going on a bit, even if the timings are a bit arbitrary. I had a disagreement with my examiner, who wanted to know why I wasn't turning back with my rough running. It was because I thought I was 60nm ahead of where he thought I was!
29th Jul 2003, 20:03
I did mine in a small room with a radio and a red light which was switched on when an emergency had happened. In my case an engine failure on final.
I found it slightly off putting to be in a room with no noise, instruments etc, and not 'flying' to any leg times. Basically I could make calls as soon as I was ready, but once I got into it I relaxed and found it reasonably easy.
I agree, make sure you have your PAN and MAYDAY calls of pat.
Best of luck.
29th Jul 2003, 20:03
For mine, I was given an RT lesson beforehand by the examiner. We ran through and practised all the calls. For the exam, I sat in one room with a a mock up radio and head seat and the examiner sat in the other. I knew what the route would be and what call I would have to make.
The was a mayday and pan and I agree, you have to know these.
Overall the experience was a lot less stressful than I thought. I'm not exactly suire what they are looking for but there does seem to be a fair bit leeway.
Good luck with yours!
30th Jul 2003, 00:57
Parris50 - sounds like we had the same examiner!
I found the whole thing ridiculously unrealistic and the procedures seemed a hundred years out of date (but then my examiner was very, very old). His radio procedure sounded like something out of WWII - made me wonder why the old method of constant assessment was stopped (I'm sure there was a good reason...)
30th Jul 2003, 19:37
DBChopper - you didn't do it at Biggin Hill by any chance?
30th Jul 2003, 20:03
The electronic gadgetry they use to simulate the radio was out of action when I did mine, so we did it sat at opposite ends of a long room (back to back at my insistance, as I couldn't visualise the flight while looking the examiner in the eye). I suspect this made it even more surreal than the examples mentioned above.
Just what is it they use to simulate the radio? I'd be keen to know as I never even saw it. Do you wear a headset and sit alone in a room? Do you have 'real' radio's to dial in frequencies on? Does the examiner put on different voices for different frequencies :p ? Sounds fun.
30th Jul 2003, 20:19
Just what is it they use to simulate the radio? I'd be keen to know as I never even saw it. Do you wear a headset and sit alone in a room? Do you have 'real' radio's to dial in frequencies on? Does the examiner put on different voices for different frequencies ? Sounds fun.
Mine was just like that! :ok: I had a simple little buzzer radio thing that linked between two different rooms and a bogus VHF-COM freq selector. I had a headset just so I dnt get distracted cos it was in one of Cambs maintennance hangers. And yes!! funnily enough mine RT examiner put on very different accents :D he was different for home aerodrome, then enroute, then VDF then mayday and finally destination aerodrome. Some accents were a bit off tho :ugh: but he was a crazy little man..
31st Jul 2003, 00:16
Parris50 - yes, so we definitely DID have the same examiner :)
As I recall, he sat in the next room and played the various controlling roles (same voice for each this time) as I gave estimates and then spotted a sailing dinghy in distress (as you do). He was very fair and gave me a very thorough briefing, so I came away with the result I wanted, but I did expect an 'Ello 'Ello voice to emerge from the radio kit, " 'Ello night'awk - thees ees London..." ;)
31st Jul 2003, 01:26
Done it today, passed.
I had the same as you, Parris and DBChopper.
Made thing extremly easy I thought, even though I spotted the dingy before I should have done!! (Good eyesight I reckon!!)
Cheers to all for the helpful advice..
31st Jul 2003, 04:33
DBChopper - ah yes the sailing dinghy in distress. I remember it well! The examiner had a reputation for completely ripping the RT apart but passing him/her anyway. I remember the guy before me. I heard the exam and thought he did alright. The examiner's words were something like "That was pretty poor but I'll pass you anyway" Didn't do too much for my nerves. It was alright for him, he'd probably been doing it since WW1. I'd only been doing it for about 30 minutes!
31st Jul 2003, 05:49
Just out of curiosity, has anyone failed the R/T Oral?
or are most examiners good hearted enough to think that the poor guy must be having a bad day... :confused:
31st Jul 2003, 06:56
I believe the examiner in question was an airline pilot many, many years ago (I seem to remember on Constellations, or something equally propellory and old and impressive). He was working at Biggin way back when I was a spotty 16 year old taking my first fixed wing lessons in exchange for aircraft refuelling and window wiping. The R/T was probably the same, too (about time they rescued the poor sods in the dinghy!). I wonder how many thousands of people have got through the R/T test with him...?
1st Aug 2003, 01:18
when copying down info from the controllers (you'll do a lot of it)
write in very shorthand.
e.g1. when he says the QNH is 1010
write down Q1010
then when you come back to read it back youll remember to say QNH 1010 and not just 1010.
write as little as possible and make sure you understand it when you come back to reading it back.
also, dont use uneccesary words e.g and
for example, dont say G-BXWZ is at stand no 9 with information Zulu with QNH1010 and i would like taki instructions.
shorten it to- G-BXWZ stand 9 information zulu QNH1010 request taxi.
finally, if you get stuck with what to say just say standby, take your finger off the button and start again when ready.
Good luck, Oli
i dont think anyone would like taki instructions!