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Training at West Palm Beach: Ocean Helicopters /Cloud 9

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Training at West Palm Beach: Ocean Helicopters /Cloud 9

Old 19th Aug 2008, 02:20
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: the one less travelled
Posts: 69
lets add to the mix...for the sake of advice to the original poster.

I instruct at *one* of the schools mentioned.

I know instructors at both schools, (trained with most of them), and like most things in aviation it comes down to personalities a lot of time, and sometimes as a low time/new pilot, that's all you have to go on...so come visit both, then make an informed decision...you'll be making them for the rest of your career - so why not start now..

And to publicise F45, it's an easy going, uncontrolled airport with loads of interesting places to build cross-country to, and whatever is said here, rest assured when it comes to operating at the airport, safety and courtesy is the number one priority, and I have found both operators to be both.

And the free pizza at Sunquest on a sat is a bonus...it's a break from the ramen noodles for us instructors - thanks Tamara...
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Old 19th Aug 2008, 07:58
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Downwind of a smelly passenger
Age: 51
Posts: 177

Hungry Feckers, go buy yer own pizza!!!

Last edited by funfinn2000; 19th Aug 2008 at 07:59. Reason: spelling
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Old 19th Aug 2008, 19:56
  #23 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 135
I am another vote for Ocean. I was one of the FIRST students through their doors and would have stayed there if it hadn't been for a long-gone partner they originally had. But that is ancient history and today they are top notch.

Never had any contact with C9, but apparently many happy customers.

And, glad to hear Tamara is still at Sunquest. What a sweetheart.

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Old 20th Aug 2008, 04:05
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: South Florida
Posts: 126
So at 7.30 am you saw what you describe as an aggressive manoever at a deserted airfield,was it a solo pilot (CFI) repositioning a machine, was it in front of students, was a student on board and was it dangerous?

As I said in my PM I wanted more information - I wasnt condoning or supporting it, I am the Chief Pilot and I would indeed want to know if one of my pilots was 'hot dogging' ,as you say, when they thought no one else was around.

We all employ young CFI's who like to push the envelope, especially when the cat isnt watching.

We have a 100% accident and violation free record, which I am proud of (we fly over 7,000 hrs a year) and I am keen to maintain it.

Re European manoevers, there are a few exercises taught differently in Europe including the aforementioned quickstop (which does require skill and co-ordination for it to be flown well) - who are you to say that we only train to the FAA PTS. We have a very large European customer base and have 2 JAA instructors on staff and are currenly actively pursuing JAA FTO approval.

Please call me as requested in my PM to discuss (when it finally stops raining down here!!).

Last edited by anti-talk; 20th Aug 2008 at 04:16.
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Old 20th Apr 2010, 21:53
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Palm Beach Gardens
Posts: 1
Well I dont know if you have made your mind up by this time, but I assume you have. Do you have any thoughts towards the school you went with? I am currently in your shoes. I have had the opportunity to sit down and speak with Pam Landis at Ocean Helicopters and found the company to be very welcoming and professional.
Last year I also had the opportunity to experience a trial flight with Cloud 9 (CFI Mike=Great guy). Unfortunately Geoff is usually with someone when I pop in, so I have not been able to sit down and speak with him making it difficult for me to dramatically compare.
However, the biggest difference I have seen in visiting both schools is that Ocean is very laid back and relaxed, where as Cloud 9 seems to be more business focused. (Less of a "Hi how are you" atmosphere).

I am inferring this as somebody who has just walked in without an appointment, and randomly asked questions, which I'm sure isnt a frequent occurance for them. (If you have ever been to f45, it's slightly off the beaten path and not a place where you would typically be driving by to just stop in).
There are 2 other Heli Flight schools at Lantana (KLNA), but I prefer not to have to drive that far everyday unless necessary. I plan on attending Ocean Helicopters "Learn To Fly Day" on May 15th and will be somewhat closer to deciding on a school then. Neither school has been able to give a concrete answer reguarding hiring post completion of CFI, which can be discouraging, but this is just simply a risk you may have to take to accomplish your dream. There's a risk for every career and they never promised it would come easy. Overall I think Pam was able to sum it up for me best she said, "All three schools (Palm Beach Helicopters, Ocean, and Cloud 9) are all 141. We all fly the R22. it just comes down to wherever you feel the most comfortable personality wise" For me, I think its going to come down to the most likely prospect of a job after completion.
Those are my thoughts and if anybody can help it would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 20th Apr 2010, 22:52
  #26 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Belgium
Age: 59
Posts: 494
No school can give you a guarantee for a job, if they do it's a scam. They cannot judge beforehand how good you are, if you fit in the team and the timeframe you finish your training. If the current instructors don't move on (which is very hard in the current climate) you are stuck, and won't get hired. Bottomline you won't get any guarantees when you decide to become a helicopter pilot.
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Old 21st Apr 2010, 07:21
  #27 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2003
Location: OS SX2063
Age: 52
Posts: 1,025
HillerBee sums it up nicely.

If someone is willing to give you a concrete job offer on the basis of you spending cash with them and they have never seen you fly or worse still you have never even flown as a pilot, avoid them at all costs.

Would you want to be trained by someone who was guaranteed a job at the end of their training but was not very good at it when they got there !

Even places like Bristow academy cannot take all of their trainees on, and I guess they pick the best ones who want to stay, they have a large pool to choose from.

I say good on both schools for being honest with you.


Last edited by VeeAny; 21st Apr 2010 at 07:34.
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Old 7th Nov 2011, 17:24
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Italy
Posts: 593
Ocean Helicopter or Cloud 9??

Hy guys,

Thinking in adding a FAA CPL add-on on my licence, selected this 2.

Opinion on them please? Professionality of instructors?

Thank you all

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Old 7th Nov 2011, 17:43
  #29 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Where I'm pointing...
Posts: 583
Met the guys from Cloud 9 at Heli Expo earlier this year through Paco.

Seem like good guys, and I plan on flying with them when I head down to Florida next.
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Old 7th Nov 2011, 22:42
  #30 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Down by the river
Posts: 7

I would choose Cloud 9 over Ocean. Cloud 9 has better aircraft, facility, and all around good people to fly with. Not to mention Ocean had another helicopter crash 2 days go which is the second in 5 months. So they are down to one maybe two aircraft now, which is an Alpha model R22. I would contact Geoff with Cloud 9 they will get you done quick but with great training and no BS. If you want anymore info about the 2 schools just PM.

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Old 8th Nov 2011, 15:25
  #31 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: florida
Posts: 2
Ocean Helicopters.

CHN12, I am one of the owners of Ocean Helicopters. Yes we did have a accident with one of our aircraft on a rental. We operate R22 Beta II's and yes we have a Alpha model too....but please if you are going to speak for my company get your numbers correct or please don't comment on a company you have no connection with.
If any one needs information, call me at 561-625-1900
My name is Pam Landis.
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Old 8th Nov 2011, 16:48
  #32 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: lake district
Age: 47
Posts: 169
hi pam,

i did some training with you back in 2007 i think, back in the days when mr quigley was floating about. really enjoyed it but it was a bit unstructured as i could only hour build in the 22 and 44, as i couldnt do my full jaa type rating. anyway i did them in march and now have 300 hours of really enjoyable flying.

i now have a bell 206 rating but need more hours to work my way towards insured status as p1 solo. im looking at coming out this winter, 3 weeks over xmas perhaps. right, can you a revalidate my h300 jaa which ran out two years ago, b what is your b206 dual hourly rate, and, c, do you, or any other ppruners know of say a news gathering organisation where i can build big cheap hours being the tea maker and pilots dog body??? people say they know of such people but no one has given me any contacts. it would be great to do some serious training with you then go onto do say 30 hours b206 newsgathering?????
if this message constitutes thread creep then apologies.
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Old 8th Nov 2011, 22:32
  #33 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Down by the river
Posts: 7
Well Ms. Landis, Im sorry if I don't have my "numbers correct" but I will be more than happy to, so lets see yall have had BH206 tail strike, then in 35Z student pulled mixture, Hard landing hovering white R22, MD500 tail chop which was a police county heli, Schweizer into a house in Naples, R22 fuel cap through tail rotor and then this one just recently hitting the houses/car. So that looks like 7 accidents/incidents but if my "numbers" aren't correct I will recheck the NTSB website. And you are right I have no connection with you company but as an outsider looking in its like yall rather have the insurance company take care of the damage than doing proper maintenance.
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 11:49
  #34 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: lake district
Age: 47
Posts: 169
you know what in my time flying helicopters i have met some truly inspiring people, including the guys at ocean. bear in mind i had just come from an academy that while proffessional felt like being in a pressure cooker that has genuinely left my brain fried. the guys at ocean were a breath of fresh air.....

but one common denominator is the willingness of helicopter proffessionals to tear strips off each other at a moments notice. the other day i mentioned an operator to a competitor and heard the words.. let me tell you about that outfit..... so i put my phone on speaker, and got on with my lunch. after 30 mins ranting i put the phone down a broken man. i can only put this phenomenon down to having an abundance of spare time to kill. day after day i see it happening.

you will find that by getting on with each other you will attract a wider audience, and boy do you need it. just chill out and bear in mind life is very short.
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 13:44
  #35 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 73
Seriously spiteful and uncalled for words, usually coming from an immature/inexperienced person.


Do not rise to it. Usually these types have some sort of connection to your company, perhaps a disgruntled customer. Who knows? Needless to say that as 'outsiders looking in' they do not know the inside facts and to publish such poison on a public forum (let alone say the words in the first place) is careless and shameless. Their words are to be taken with a pinch of salt to say the least!

It's unfortunate when you have a spot of bad luck, you expect bad press from the sensationalist know-nothing media, but you can only hope that you don't get it from fellow industry people - my guess is this guy is not industry, I certainly hope not - this person doesn't display the composure one would expect in a pilot or hope for when flying with em'!

Best wishes
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 18:42
  #36 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: An Irish dude in Houston, TX. I miss home!!!
Age: 41
Posts: 231
I noticed that this CNH12 guy has only 3 posts on PPRuNe so far. Also, could CNH12 stand for "Cloud Nine Helicopters"? If so this guy somehow regards himself as connected to Cloud Nine, maybe a student or employee. Either way, just turning up on this site and bashing one company over another should not be tolerated.

CNH12, how about you head on over to JH forums if you want to do that. You'll be taken in with open arms ove there with that kind of drivel.

I'm not in anyway affiliated with either of these 2 companies and have never even flown in the area. But like OAP, it bothers me greatly that we can't show more professionalism toward each other.
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 20:11
  #37 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Athens, Ohio
Age: 37
Posts: 22
Pm me I have two good friends that are CFIs at West Palm
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 21:01
  #38 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Down by the river
Posts: 7
darrenphughes- CNH12 is my initials not cloud nine helicopters. My posting was to just help liftman on a school that he asked about. I just happen to know a few people who went there. If I was considering a place to spend my money I would want the same information.
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 21:01
  #39 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: New Zealand
Age: 64
Posts: 40
Stringfellow "but one common denominator is the willingness of helicopter proffessionals to tear strips off each other at a moments notice."

darrenphughes "it bothers me greatly that we can't show more professionalism toward each other"

Old Age Pilot "careless and shameless"

Last edited by Scrawny; 9th Nov 2011 at 21:12.
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Old 9th Nov 2011, 21:15
  #40 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: New Zealand
Age: 64
Posts: 40
So CNH12, just to clarify for us all, who are you working for at the moment and who did you do your PPl, CPL, CFI courses with?
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