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Helicopters to Aeroplanes

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Helicopters to Aeroplanes

Old 8th Oct 2016, 03:20
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Helicopters to Aeroplanes

Hi Guys,

Newbie here looking for some advice and considering a few different options at the moment.

I just wanted to find out about converting a CPL H ME IR a CPL A ME IR. I understand there are 5 exams, a PPL A and 100 or so flying hours and various checks rides involved but have any low hours (less than 300) rotary aviators actually done this????

If so how was your experience viewed when applying for jobs? Did the rotary experience make any difference at all?? Did you get work with an airline? How did you find the employment market as a new CPL H/CPL A??

I love flying helicopters (and flying in general) but it seems to me spending another 15k on an FI H rating doesn't look like a brilliant idea when for approx the same price you could convert to fixed wing - which currently appears to have much better prospects for employment for low hours pilots and better long term career options.

Any information would be much appreciated.

Best
HU300CBI is offline  
Old 8th Oct 2016, 09:55
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Join Date: Oct 2016
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I did this years ago with 4500hrs rotary. It was a doddle.

Firstly airline reaction. Some understood that helo time was valuable but there are some real ignorant people out there who think rotary time is worthless. Sad because it is very far from that tho with only 300hrs its hardly relevant. Don't expect any more than a polite passing interest from a future employer.

On the UK system the conversion required the requisite number of P1 aeroplane hours to be achieved so just burning avgas pointlessly for 80 or so hours and in your case, yes, a PPL (A) to achieve that.

You'll also need the tech exams which you didn't cover in rotary. It's certain these will include P of F (aeroplanes), VP propellors and pressurisation. It may require piston engines and supercharging depending on the initial type you convert to. You're likely to have the rest. (Hydraulics, AC electrics) so the burden of study is not great. These are all pretty simple subjects.

You'll need to pass the skills test so a period with a flying school to get you up to speed on that will be needed. Presumably you did some f/w in the initial helo course so its boning up to exam standard that's required. How long that particular piece of string becomes is up to your skill in learning to fly a plank accurately which is harder than you might imagine. You should be exempt the nav section of the test and possibly some of the night flying requirements but your CAA will tell you that when you ask for an assessment.

Then there's the IR which being fresh from a helo IR won't be a major deal but by the same token don't underestimate it. Even a kludge like a Seneca is a remarkably sensitive instrument platform and will be a new type to you at the same time which adds interest.

Best of luck.

For a career aeroplanes are the way to go, helos are just for fun these days unless you strike extremely lucky. Sadly the world is awash with (mainly ex military) helo pilots and there are nowhere near enough jobs to go around.
noflynomore is offline  
Old 8th Oct 2016, 11:06
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This may help:-

1. * ATPL(A) ground school conversion course, thereby negating the need for PPL(A) ground exams, including:
Principles of Flight
Aircraft Performance
Instrumentation
Aircraft General Knowledge
Operational Procedures

*Bristol Ground School do this course for approx 1400 and their online question bank is very good.

2. PPL (A) course including:
25 hours dual instruction
10 hours solo (SPIC)
1.5 hour test (SPIC)

3. Night Rating including:
3 hours dual instruction
2 hours solo (SPIC)

4. Hour building sufficient prior to commencing CPL course:

100hrs for cpl(a) skills test

5. MEP (no one is going to do a single engine CPL) including:

6 hours

6. MEIR (no one is going to do a SEIR) including:

5 hours in aircraft
5 hours in simulator
1.5 hour test (SPIC)

7. CPL (A) including:

15 hours dual instruction
1.5 hour test (SPIC)


You get a reduction in hours requirement for the PIC helo hours you may have but you do need a minimum number of P1 (a) hours before the CPL(a) skills test.

Last edited by helimutt; 9th Oct 2016 at 16:41. Reason: incorrect wording
helimutt is offline  
Old 8th Oct 2016, 13:39
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CAPT do the TK conversion as well, and probably CATS. Standards Doc 31 from the CAA will list all the schools. Be sure that the school concerned actually has an approved conversion course, and is not just offering the 5 exams.

G
Gordon Bennet is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 01:47
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Thanks very much for the replies. Much appricated and safe flying guys.
HU300CBI is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 09:16
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Not a daft idea, been thinking of converting myself...
Evil Twin is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 13:20
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There is some 'out of date' advice offered above - YOU DO NOT need to hour build up to 100 PIC for the CPL - the only requirement is that you have 100 hours fixed-wing. Obviously you'll need some solo for the PPL, and 10 hours XC for the IR, but for the CPL the only PIC time you need is the 300 miler.
rudestuff is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 16:35
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Just to clarify, directly from the CAA

For the overall 200 hours of flight time that is required before undertaking the CPL(A) skill test you are able to use 100 hours of PIC time that you have accrued in helicopters. There is additionally a requirement to have 100 hours of PIC time in aeroplanes as part of this 200 hours before undertaking a skill test. This 100 hours must be in aeroplanes. You can therefore use 100 hours of helicopter time and the other 100 hours would need to be PIC in aeroplanes.
helimutt is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 16:36
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Originally Posted by rudestuff View Post
There is some 'out of date' advice offered above - YOU DO NOT need to hour build up to 100 PIC for the CPL - the only requirement is that you have 100 hours fixed-wing. Obviously you'll need some solo for the PPL, and 10 hours XC for the IR, but for the CPL the only PIC time you need is the 300 miler.
Clarification from U.K. CAA

Thank you for your email. I confirm the 100 hours PIC must be in aeroplanes. You can use some of your helicopter PIC hours towards the 200 hours total requirement before undertaking the CPL skills test. The credits towards the 200 hour requirement are detailed below:

(e) Hours as PIC of other categories of aircraft may count towards the 200 hours flight
time, in the following cases:
(i) 30 hours in helicopter, if the applicant holds a PPL(H); or
(ii) 100 hours in helicopters, if the applicant holds a CPL(H); or
(iii) 30 hours in TMGs or sailplanes; or
(iv) 30 hours in airships, if the applicant holds a PPL(As); or
(v) 60 hours in airships, if the applicant holds a CPL(As).

Please refer to CAP 804, section 4, section L page 10 and 11 for further information.

http://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/CAP804%20April%202015%20searchable.pdf

100hrs PIC is required on aeroplanes prior to CPL test.
MINself is offline  
Old 9th Oct 2016, 18:45
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Hey Basil,
Earlier tonight, I quoted your earlier comment about the "angry palm tree".
Amongst the gathering were also some present and former fixed and rotary-wing pilots.
Caused a bit of merriment and discussion, it did. Thank you.
Stanwell is offline  
Old 10th Oct 2016, 20:54
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Think about this: You need 25 hours dual to get a PPL. You need 25 hours Dual to get a CPL. If you also need 100 hours PIC - there's only 50 hours left to credit. So why allow you to credit 100? The only logical answer is that the helicopter hours can count towards, the PIC hours.

The problem is that it's a very poorly written regulation, the interpretation of which differs depending on who at the CAA you ask, and generally the person you do ask doesn't understand the question.

I'm amazed that they're still sending that email, because the CAA have already ruled on this one. I've seen an email from the CAA to the head of training at an ATO confirming it. In fact I sent a copy along with my CPL(A) application, which was issued without question with 67 hours fixed wing PIC.
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Old 10th Oct 2016, 21:15
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rudestuff: I've recently had the same experience as others wrt to the 100 hrs P1. I agree it's ridiculous but the CAA kept sending me the more stringent answer and stopped replying to my protestations in the end. I'd be very interested in knowing who and when you spoke to to get yours sorted please?
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Old 11th Oct 2016, 03:51
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Rudestuff - would you mind sending me a PM with the contact details of the person you spoke to at the CAA? I'm also assuming you had more than 300 hours rotary in order to convert with 67 hours fixed wing??
Best
HU300CBI is offline  
Old 11th Oct 2016, 09:03
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dont suppose you can PM me a copy of the email you sent when applying for cpl(a)?
helimutt is offline  
Old 11th Oct 2016, 13:47
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I can't pass on an email to which I'm a third party, but try emailing FCLWEB (for the attention of Jurga)
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