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Newbie & Flying Training Advice (Merged)

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Newbie & Flying Training Advice (Merged)

Old 3rd Apr 2020, 23:00
  #781 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: All at sea
Posts: 1,766
Airline flying as a career now has a limited shelf life.
Autonomous flight is coming to an airport near you. Not next year or even next decade, but certainly within the working life of today’s 20 year olds.
In my 50 plus year career, radio operators were already gone from western cockpits (though the Russians held on to them in the name of employment for all), then we saw the demise of the flight navigator, the flight engineer, and now development of some very clever drones.
If I was starting out now as a late teenager I doubt I would find IT attractive. Not smart enough! I would qualify in a ‘dirty’ trade or unattractive profession, because that guarantees employment in hard times. People will always need to shit, so will always need a plumber; always have toothaches, so will always need dentists. Or combine dirty with attractive and qualify in divorce or criminal defence law - both always in demand. Pilots could be your main customers for the former, operators for the latter.
Then, if still suffering the aviation bug, become expert on drone operations and finally learn to fly conventional aircraft. I would regard flying as an expensive hobby with some limited career potential.
Niche operations such as RFDS flying will persist for a long time to come. But competition for these jobs will be fierce now that there are so many experienced pilots on the market.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 3rd Apr 2020 at 23:21.
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Old 4th Apr 2020, 02:10
  #782 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: The Hot Box
Posts: 452
Autonomous flight is coming to an airport near you.
thanks for the laugh.

Not anytime even remotely close. Not within this kid's professional lifetime. We are a long way off from even having a fully autonomous car. Maybe 30 years at least. When you see what happens when Boeing can't get a relatively simple system like MCAS right. - you are drawing a very long bow thinking we are nearing a point trusting operation of transport category aircraft
on complete autonomy.

People will always need to shit, so will always need a plumber; always have toothaches, so will always need dentists.
There's a greater chance you'll see automation giving you a filling before you see it being used to fly aircraft without a human ultimately at the helm.
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Old 4th Apr 2020, 02:59
  #783 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: All at sea
Posts: 1,766
There is plenty of debate elsewhere on PPRuNe about the future of autonomous flight. Perhaps I should modify 'autonomous' to 'remotely controlled from the ground' to acknowledge that somewhere in the chain a human will be involved - just not in the front of the machine itself. The failure of MCAS to breathe life into an outdated design, several mass murder-suicides committed by pilots and fairly regular crashes caused by pilot incompetence warrants rapid progress to remove the weakest link from the cockpit. Yeh, yeh, I know all about Sully and Al Haynes and many others who saved many lives by being there and acting with great skill. But it was to some extent yesterday's technology that put them in those situations..

https://www.redbull.com/au-en/thered...assenger-drone
These guys are today's Wright Brothers. Within 15 years of the first flight at Kittyhawk, Sperry had developed an autopilot; within 30, all-metal aircraft were in mass production, jets followed, then autoland, supersonic flight, space travel - all within 60 years. Who woulda thunk it back in 1903?

The OP would do well to research more technical papers, progress in the military etc to form a conclusion about long term pilot career potential than to rely on emotive opinions (including mine). As to be expected in PPRuNe, Luddites outnumber visionaries and tend to be more strident in their denial.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 4th Apr 2020 at 04:10.
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Old 4th Apr 2020, 10:58
  #784 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: FL
Posts: 11
It will be better if you ask a pilot.

Thanks
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Old 4th Apr 2020, 14:06
  #785 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: somers
Posts: 12
Originally Posted by megab22 View Post
Hello, i am currently in year 9 and i hope to become like a lot of pilots here and my friends would like to be pilots too. I am currently working on my RPL but i am confused about what to do in the future. I have seen bad reviews on cadet ships but i can see that it could be a quick way to get in the airline if well done. and i have been seeing university courses that is AB initio. i am just looking for advice on how to approach working for an airline and if i should work on any other licenses after my RPL. I am very confused and i can see too many ways to approach this but not know which ones are the good ways. I have a passion for aviation and i hope to be living my childhood dream one day as so a lot of other teenagers like me. We are asking for any type of advice for us and if we could get help. I am sorry to the current pilots that are affected by COVID-19, i guess we cant do a lot about it other than staying strong and being together. thanks and have a good day.
My advise is to give it your best shot and persevere. Who knows, maybe very few will pursue an aviation career in future and you'll be in demand.
After dropping out of high school in year 10 in mid 1960s I went on to have a 42 year aviation career, the last 15 in command of wide body jets, no one, including me, thought that would have been possible. Good luck
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Old 5th Apr 2020, 06:03
  #786 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Going home
Posts: 289
If you're in year 9 now, I reckon you're at the right time to make a career of it in aviation. Remember these down turns in the industry happens in cycles of 5 to 7 years. I dare say in 7 years time, when you're in your early 20's things will be a lot different with the industry back to as normal as it can be after the dust settles.
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Old 5th Apr 2020, 15:22
  #787 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,973
Who pays for your flying training because you had better start saving now. It will cost you many thousands of $$$ unless you join the RAAF. Before you even consider being a pilot make sure you have another skill behind you - administrative or trade. Because for sure you may have to fall back on it to make a living if you lose your flying job in circumstances beyond your control. Chances are likely that will happen
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 00:06
  #788 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: All at sea
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Originally Posted by alleyquit View Post
It will be better if you ask a pilot.

Thanks
He did and got answers from pilots.
If the OP researches through PPRuNe and other sites he will find hundreds of similar answers and opinions from pilots all over the world.

In common:
  • Today's pilots need an alternative non-aviation dependent skill to see them through likely periods of unemployment as a pilot
  • If still at school, it is best to obtain that skill prior to commencing flying
  • Best path financially (and for quality training) to become a pilot is the military - if you can make the cut and live with the return of service
  • If you can't, next best is a cadetship underwritten by an airline which offers employment at the end of training
  • Pay-to-fly is a mug's game, but if you have a tidy inheritance or indulgent parents, go for it and hope that the returns from a flying career justify the investment
  • At selection time chances of flying job are directly influenced by supply and demand
  • Supply and demand (disadvantaging pilots) changes literally overnight - recovery to favor pilots can take years
  • Even in good times pilots are not united enough to obtain better terms and conditions - in bad times it is dog eat dog
  • So-called 'legacy' airlines no longer guarantee a job for life
  • The golden days when we got to actually make our own calculations, work the throttles and physically fly the aeroplane are all but gone - automation rules and Big Brother (flight data monitoring) has killed any pleasure we once took from 'spirited flying' (as was encouraged by an old instructor handbook I still treasure, irrelevant as it now is)
  • If you really must get married, find yourself a 'keeper' (and you are not getting mine!) who will stick with you wherever in the world your career takes you, and through periods of low or no income

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 6th Apr 2020 at 00:17.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 01:47
  #789 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Outback Australia
Posts: 340
Mach E Avelli:
Respectfully, I disagree with your last two points.
One piece of advice that I was given and have taken to heart is: As often as possible, handfly from start up to TOC, and from TOD to shutdown. It will keep your skills sharp, your scan active, and will help you on the day that the autopilot gives up the ghost. The requirement for autopilot for these bits is an early indicator that scan and skills might be declining.
In my opinion, a relationship (doesn't have to be marriage) can be the best thing to keep you sane, solvent and sober. It can also be the most soul destroying thing ever. I do agree its probably cheaper to choose once and wisely, rather than one for every stage of your career.
Although, somebody once joked (?) to me that you are not a real pilot until you've had your first divorce. :-) :-)
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 02:49
  #790 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
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There's no disputing that we should hand fly as much as possible to maintain skills. The problem is that some operators actively discourage it, and operations may even prohibit it - e.g. SIDs, STARS, LNAV/VNAV approaches, Low Visibility approaches.
Chuck in a minimum number of autolands on long haul operations to keep certification going, and each pilot could be lucky to get two or three manual landings a month. And woe betide you if you ARE hand flying and exceed 0.25nm off track or 30 degrees bank angle or two knots on a speed limit - you will be in for tea and bickies with the boss, or in the case of some overseas carriers, dismissed without notice.
To their credit the FAA and manufacturers have re-thought the importance of hand flying, but mostly it is still left to simulator training to put the philosophy into practice.
The monitoring 'system' parameters are unforgiving of even quite minor transgressions on line operations, so pilots are reluctant to disconnect the automatics and play at being real (even if twice divorced) pilots.
Plenty of debate elsewhere on all this too. The points raised, as I said, are a common theme.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 7th Apr 2020 at 23:31. Reason: typo
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 14:26
  #791 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,973
Mach E,
I'm with you one hundred percent on all the points you have made. I speak from experience of 70 years in the game..
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 19:24
  #792 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: sierra village
Posts: 224
Handflying is not in the long term plan of manufacturers and airlines to deskill the pilot job and fully automate the flight deck. They have a point, undeniably, safety has improved with automation.

Is slavishly following a flight director with A/T on really hand flying? Or merely being a meat powered autopilot?

Being old school, I used to like to hand fly, but I now concede it’s no longer an essential skill. You’d be surprised at how many people these days that can’t fly a decent, accurate visual circuit without the A/T. It used to worry me, but I now get the point of the “brave new world” of autonomous flight.

The (solo) airline pilot of the future, will start, taxi and chat to the tower. Line up, press a button and at TOC will go back to the crew rest area until TOD. The aircraft will land and he will taxi up to the gate and shut down. Every day, there are dozens of military UAVs plying the skies of the Middle East doing exactly this. Technology like this soon to be coming to an airliner near you.

The joy of actually poling around the skies will only be found in gliding, aerobatics and RA. i.e. stuff you have to pay to do.


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Old 6th Apr 2020, 23:26
  #793 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 675
Originally Posted by lucille View Post
Handflying is not in the long term plan of manufacturers and airlines to deskill the pilot job and fully automate the flight deck. They have a point, undeniably, safety has improved with automation.

Is slavishly following a flight director with A/T on really hand flying? Or merely being a meat powered autopilot?

Being old school, I used to like to hand fly, but I now concede it’s no longer an essential skill. You’d be surprised at how many people these days that can’t fly a decent, accurate visual circuit without the A/T. It used to worry me, but I now get the point of the “brave new world” of autonomous flight.

The (solo) airline pilot of the future, will start, taxi and chat to the tower. Line up, press a button and at TOC will go back to the crew rest area until TOD. The aircraft will land and he will taxi up to the gate and shut down. Every day, there are dozens of military UAVs plying the skies of the Middle East doing exactly this. Technology like this soon to be coming to an airliner near you.

The joy of actually poling around the skies will only be found in gliding, aerobatics and RA. i.e. stuff you have to pay to do.
Too true on all accounts.
its a skill that's becoming redundant and with the way technology is progressing it probably won't be even needed at any stage.

some years ago when I was a coe'y on the 'bus' I wanted to do a full manually controlled landing, A/P off A/T off. Was a clear day low work load via an ILS, turned the 'help off half way down the slope and the Capt imeadiately sat bolt upright looking very tense and pale! Was the funniest thing to see!

Flyng is slowly becoming a ' skill-less trade'
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Old 7th Apr 2020, 00:16
  #794 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: FNQ ... It's Permanent!
Posts: 3,498
Originally Posted by machtuk View Post

some years ago when I was a coe'y on the 'bus' I wanted to do a full manually controlled landing, A/P off A/T off. Was a clear day low work load via an ILS, turned the 'help off half way down the slope and the Capt imeadiately sat bolt upright looking very tense and pale! Was the funniest thing to see!
He'd probably seen you fly before!
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Old 7th Apr 2020, 01:19
  #795 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Going home
Posts: 289
I guess outnabout doesn't fly in RVSM airspace! ;-)
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Old 14th Apr 2020, 10:47
  #796 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Sydney
Posts: 221
Quote Lucille
". Every day, there are dozens of military UAVs plying the skies of the Middle East doing exactly this. Technology like this soon to be coming to an airliner near you."

And according to an article published in the Washington post a few years ago. The accident rate is very high due to lots of reasons, the main one being lack of SA.

Automation has too many gotchas to get easily accepted by pax (and by the informed public).
Cheers
Seabreeze
( See you the other side of the Covid curtain)

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Old 29th May 2020, 04:37
  #797 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 13
My flying experience sofar

Good afternoon all,

I have recently taken up the dream if learning to fly at the age of 35. Yesterday was my third flight lesson learning all about climbing and descending. The first two lessons were relatively good, I was able to control the aircraft well. Yesterday however I was not even remotely close to competent. Without delving into the specifics of actually how poorly I performed I am interested in knowing if this sort of thing is common when you start out? Can you have lessons you completely stuff up? Did you ever fell like you just didn't have what it took?
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Old 29th May 2020, 07:13
  #798 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Inglin
Posts: 3
Originally Posted by Chopz View Post
Good afternoon all,

I have recently taken up the dream if learning to fly at the age of 35. Yesterday was my third flight lesson learning all about climbing and descending. The first two lessons were relatively good, I was able to control the aircraft well. Yesterday however I was not even remotely close to competent. Without delving into the specifics of actually how poorly I performed I am interested in knowing if this sort of thing is common when you start out? Can you have lessons you completely stuff up? Did you ever fell like you just didn't have what it took?
Oh yes! Many times! But if you're persistent enough, you'll figure out how to overcome these hurdles. I'm only a handful of flights away from sitting my CPL Flight Test, and all I can say is I'm glad I never gave up and kept pushing through despite my moments of learning frustrations.
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