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Flying an Airbus with 140hrs

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Flying an Airbus with 140hrs

Old 20th Jan 2022, 07:47
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Originally Posted by pineteam View Post
Yeah flying is safer today thanks to the advanced and robust aircraft we fly nowadays. Definitely not thanks to the pilots. In the last 20/30 years, how many of these accidents or serious incidents could have been avoided if real aviators were in the front?
Disagree. Improvements have been made everywhere. Itís not just the aircraft. Tenerife disaster?
CRM has improved massively. Airlines that have poor CRM are usually the ones having the close shaves. A few incidents that happened in my previous airline came down to poor CRM. I flew with said pilots and flying was good and as a single pilot they would be fine. Operating an airliner sometimes poor decisions were made I challenged a few times. They refused to apologise but hey it avoided an ASR going in on more than 1 occasion.

Someone earlier said most pilots would say they learnt more once line flying and for me personally thatís the case. PPL and CPL seems almost pointless looking back on it. I canít even remember my PPL test. CPL barely. IR training was the only area I feel transferred to operating an airliner. The hour building etc pretty pointless. Yes route planning was fun and I enjoyed it but feels pointless now unless you want to fly for fun.
I have no desire to go back to SEP flying now.
Unless someone is willing to let me have a go in a Spitfire of course.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 07:48
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C/A it boils down to one's personality. How much you knowledge you can suck out of thin air. There's no war stories in MEP GA or Easy A319 anymore. There's nowhere to learn those raw instincts from.

Practical issues aside, such as the non-existent GA / part 135 in EU which to-date remains the World's second most busy airspace.

My first international + jet flights were FRA, FRA, BRU, MAN, IST, MXP, CDG, MAD, FCO, no different to many others with 254 hrs at that time (+including 35į An-28 SIM for the IR). Even without an MPL or airline cadetships scheme, those destinations were specifically scheduled. LHR came on week 6, although that required 10 hrs groundschool with an LFI for the UK procedures.

Speaking of LHR and cadetships, I will not be too far off the mark assuming 50% of CMD of the BA's transatlantic fleet have joined the airline via the ab-initio route. Over all I think hans' #40 hits the key points equally and objectively, no surprise from him.

- - - - - - - - -

Yes the BA's cadets did not become captains after 4 years which also brings up the issue of demographics/age/maturity (as a group!). In which case I tend to smirk at the MPL captains (strangely enough, the FOs taste just fine). At the same time self-awareness observes that my own definition of 'reasonably acceptable' line of PIC experience lies exactly where I stood myself, seeing that as adequate, while rejecting any lesser experience of the younger others. Okay, know exactly where that came from.

The elephant in the room seems to be:
'The true core PIC competencies are forged by flying shoddy aeroplanes in crappy weather on a poorly paid mission with sub-standard infrastructural support under a relative absence of professional guidance and regulatory oversight.'

With a wide smile, I agree with that (pls fix the grammar before quoting me) but it's not a workable solution for the oncoming generation. And it was not for mine.

Pass your message?
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 08:04
  #43 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by FlyingStone View Post
How does one get knowledge of LHR, FRA, CDG etc. and its sorrounding airspace? By flying there with a C172?
Like you FS I’m more than a bit perplexed by that particular aspect of this whole argument.

It was not uncommon in the Long haul world, probably also short haul one , for the company to introduce some exciting destination and shortly there after for it to appear on rosters…some destinations were busy or busier than LHR, some of which had interesting terrain issues, some even had a combination of both…..

It was never considered essential to send crews off to fly into or around said airport in a Cessna, you were never hired out to a turbo prop operator to gain experience in the field….the reality was you were expected to act as a professional - you did your home work, read the briefings, looked long and hard at the plates and got on with it.

Worse worse case, and one which was increasingly rare, was familiarization by way of the simulator.


Last edited by wiggy; 20th Jan 2022 at 09:05.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 08:08
  #44 (permalink)  
 
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Light aircraft flying will build stick and rudder skills, pilots will learn decision making, and the inevitable errors won't involve involve an airliner with 180 pax at a major airport.

A new CPL holder has had to cram in and regurgitate all the knowledge for his license exams, type rating and company SOPs, of which only a certain percentage has been fully retained. The necessary things are found out in the real world. In the 30+ years of flying since I did my CPL I can honestly say that I never used my knowledge of hard and soft iron magnetism or Mercator's projection.

Give me an F/O with even 500 hours total and a couple of hundred of those in the right seat of a turbo prop, over a new MPL graduate anyday. 200hour pilots are fine as second officers where errors aren't critical and they can watch and learn.

Unfortunately it is difficult for airlines without a long haul fleet, that are in countries without a large military or general aviation pool, to find suitable applicants.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 08:48
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I believe there is a huge cultural difference especially between the USA and most of Europe. European airlines were basically forced to run their own flight schools for a long time, as there is not a big GA sector and after WW2 there was a lost generation. And yes, that is ancient history but of course led to the european norm of having pilots trained directly into airline flight decks.

And of course there is much to be said about structured and focused training, the military has done that pretty much forever. Of course there are differences between civil and military training, as the „mission profile“ is very much different.

Having flown with MPL cadets as well as former MPL now captains i did not see a marked difference between them, the „normal“ abinitio CPL/ATPL holders or those having worked their way up outside that structured training route, except that the latter sometimes had more of a problem with SOP centered operation.

I have to say that training changed for the better in recent years with first ATQP and then the change over to EBT, much more relevant training can be done in the valuable time in the box that way.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 08:51
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by AIMINGHIGH123 View Post
Disagree. Improvements have been made everywhere. Itís not just the aircraft. Tenerife disaster?
CRM has improved massively. Airlines that have poor CRM are usually the ones having the close shaves. A few incidents that happened in my previous airline came down to poor CRM.
You have a good point. I totally agree. CRM today versus the past has been improved a lot. It was a serious issue and it has been addressed and corrected accordingly. CRM is as important as flying skills. But Iím talking about pure handling skills. Itís a no brainer itís a real problem and responsible for many accidents and incidents nowadays but nothing is done on that matter. But why??? And in my outfit, most serious incidents was linked to poor flying skills and slavery to automation.
And this is easily avoidable if company and pilots take their own responsibility and fly raw data during line. Even if a jet is your first aircraft itís not that complicated, just disconnect everything when you have a chance. The more you do the easier it gets; simple as that.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 10:42
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Originally Posted by pineteam View Post
Yeah flying is safer today thanks to the advanced and robust aircraft we fly nowadays. Definitely not thanks to the pilots. In the last 20/30 years, how many of these accidents or serious incidents could have been avoided if real aviators were in the front?
Right, and what do you think these MPL cadets are flying? DC-8s? 707s?


Originally Posted by krismiler View Post
Give me an F/O with even 500 hours total and a couple of hundred of those in the right seat of a turbo prop, over a new MPL graduate anyday. 200hour pilots are fine as second officers where errors aren't critical and they can watch and learn.
.
Give me a captain that doesnít base their first impressions of the FOís ability on what they did or didnít do 10+ years ago any day.

There are also plenty of trainers that will tell you that those who have the most issues on OCC courses for jet jobs are those that come from Turboprops. A Boeing or an Airbus is not a Turboprop or a C-172. Itís a bit like saying to drive a car, you have to be able to ride a bicycle.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 11:12
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Originally Posted by Vokes55 View Post
Right, and what do you think these MPL cadets are flying? DC-8s? 707s?




Give me a captain that doesn’t base their first impressions of the FO’s ability on what they did or didn’t do 10+ years ago any day.

There are also plenty of trainers that will tell you that those who have the most issues on OCC courses for jet jobs are those that come from Turboprops. A Boeing or an Airbus is not a Turboprop or a C-172. It’s a bit like saying to drive a car, you have to be able to ride a bicycle.
Your point about the MPL?

No they are not flying 707 but they should be able to. They are flying airliners that even my grandma could fly when everything goes normal which is 99.99% of the time. But when things go south you want someone who’s able to handle the plane not just playing with knobs.

I agree with your second paragraph. I know some pilots who come from turboprops who are actually terrible and some who only flew the Bus and they fly 10 times better. Why? Cause they hand fly the planes like a conventional plane in line operations. Simple as that.

Last edited by pineteam; 21st Jan 2022 at 04:36. Reason: Typo
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 11:15
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There is a lot of idyllic talk about some ideal world where initial training would be more extensive, cadet FOs would first start on conventional, less automated aircraft and all the likes. And only one question is habitually left unanswered: who will pay for all that? You can't make training indefinitely expensive. Neither will airlines throw away their Airbus-only fleets and replace them with turboprops so that newbie pilots can learn more about manual flying. That's the reality of the market and we have to work around it.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 14:04
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Originally Posted by pineteam View Post
No they are not flying 707 but they should be able to. They are flying airliners than even my grandma could fly when everything goes normal which is 99.99% of the time. But when things go south you want someone whoís able to handle the plane not just playings with knobs.
And who says they canít? If somebody has 4000 hours on the Airbus, has passed all of their sim checks, passed a command selection and then passed their command course, Iím sure theyíd manage to pass a type rating for an aircraft that your grandma couldnít fly.

When things ďgo southĒ, Iíd probably want somebody who can speak English too.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 14:17
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When things 'go south' you want the guy next to you to be on the same page you are and not just along for the ride at that point. Understanding what it's doing and why needs time on type, and we all start with zero whatever our background.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 14:30
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Vokes55 View Post
And who says they can’t? If somebody has 4000 hours on the Airbus, has passed all of their sim checks, passed a command selection and then passed their command course, I’m sure they’d manage to pass a type rating for an aircraft that your grandma couldn’t fly.

When things “go south”, I’d probably want somebody who can speak English too.
Who said they can’t? Well explain to me Air France 447, Turkish 1951 and many others! To be clear, I’m not targeting MPL specifically;I’m just tired of people denying the facts that many pilots can’t fly anymore. How many more accidents do you need?? By the way even Airbus urges their pilots to hand fly during line operations.
And for my english, yes sorry I do make mistakes, my mother language is french. Pardonnez-moi monsieur. xD
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 14:46
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As a USAF pilot,Instructor, and Commercial pilot now I can vouch what others have said here. I was trained by the military and was flying T-38’s at 80 hours total time, fingertip formation too (3ft wingtip to wingtip spacing ). So the MPL scheme, of which I’m not too familiar with, can produce a good product with minimum flight time. However, over the years instructing these new pilots, especially in the C-17 I started to notice a trend. The new automated FMC jets have a lot of capability. As someone mentioned, I could teach my grandmother to fly an A-320 or B-787. The disturbing trend I noticed is their reactions when the automation hiccuped, and the automation level was degraded to basic heading hold or flight level change, or even worse, no autopilot, these younger pilots were lost. Think of what happens to these folks when they lose their cell phones and suddenly have to figure things out on their own. Panic ensues.
The advantage of flying a C-152 around the patch for a few hundred hours is you develop hand flying skills, and BASIC instrument skills. I saw this behavior numerous times in the C-17 when we lost our automation and Nav capabilities (called degrade mode) and the younger pilots were totally lost. One instance, We were enroute to an Air Refueling and we lost our Timing control. I explained to the new pilot to compute our ground speed, divide by 6 to figure our miles per minute, then figure out what time we need to meet the tanker and accelerate or slow down to make our timing. She never had to do this, and had no clue. Us older guys aren’t superior to the younger ones, but most of us flew dumbed down planes for years so we have a “Tool Kit” of skills that mitigate issues when we lose automation, they don’t. Our mission as experienced pilots Is to pass on and teach the younger generation some of these “tricks” we used back in the day . I just took my annual checkride and the scenario I was tasked with had no auto-throttles and VNAV inop..Not a big deal because I flew for 20 years without either one.

Last edited by Chiefttp; 20th Jan 2022 at 22:02.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 19:06
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Chieftp, you really nailed it for me. Basic skills learnt on basic aircraft types are priceless. I agree that the modern generation are either as good or have the potential to be just as good. I learnt on the B737-200 the rudiments of swept wing flying with a reasonable amount of general aviation background including making decisions and getting frightened; I am certainly no better than anyone else but I am glad that my experience led up to the jet in a more organic way rather than being moulded by an L3 or equivalent.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 19:19
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It would be cheap, team building and highly motivating to invite every single pro pilot cadet to two to three weeks of glider flying first. Say up to the first three (short pattern) solos. This way they would learn a lot about flying no computer based software can teach them and the totally unable could be sorted out before it's too late.
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 20:53
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Originally Posted by Chiefttp View Post
As a USAF pilot,Instructor, and Commercial pilot now I can vouch what others have said here. I was trained by the military trained and was flying T-38ís at 80 hours total time, fingertip formation too (3ft wingtip to wingtip spacing ). So the MPL scheme, of which Iím not too familiar with, can produce a good product with minimum flight time. However, over the years instructing these new pilots, especially in the C-17 I started to notice a trend. The new automated FMC jets have a lot of capability. As someone mentioned, I could teach my grandmother to fly an A-320 or B-787. The disturbing trend I noticed is their reactions when the automation hiccuped, and the automation level was degraded to basic heading hold or flight level change, or even worse, no autopilot, these younger pilots were lost. Think of what happens to these folks who lose their cell phones and suddenly have to figure things out on their own. Panic ensues.
The advantage of flying a C-152 around the patch for a few hundred hours is you develop hand flying skills, and BASIC instrument skills. I saw this behavior numerous times in the C-17 when we lost our automation and Nav capabilities (called degrade mode) and the younger pilots were totally lost. One instance, We were enroute to an Air Refueling and we lost our Timing control. I explained to the new pilot to compute our ground speed, divide by 6 to figure our miles per minute, then figure out what time we need to meet the tanker and accelerate or slow down to make our timing. She never had to do this, and had no clue. Us older guys arenít superior to the younger ones, but most of us flew dumbed down planes for years so we have a ďTool KitĒ of skills that mitigate issues when we lose automation, they donít. Our mission as experienced pilots Is to pass on and teach the younger generation some of these ďtricksĒ we used back in the day . I just took my annual checkride and the scenario I was tasked with had no auto-throttles and VNAV inop..Not a big deal because I flew for 20 years without either one.
an excellent post sir
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 21:09
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I explained to the new pilot to compute our ground speed, divide by 6 to figure our miles per minute......
SLF here; I'm a bit confused. Wouldn't you divide by 60 to get miles/minute?
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Old 20th Jan 2022, 22:07
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Winemaker,
your correct…we tend to simplify formulas in flight due to lack of time,.if my ground speed was 360 knots, I just divided by 6, as I know we weren’t doing 60 miles per minute…just Pilot shorthand.
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Old 21st Jan 2022, 01:40
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Originally Posted by Chiefttp View Post
As a USAF pilot,Instructor, and Commercial pilot now I can vouch what others have said here. I was trained by the military and was flying T-38ís at 80 hours total time, fingertip formation too (3ft wingtip to wingtip spacing ). So the MPL scheme, of which Iím not too familiar with, can produce a good product with minimum flight time. However, over the years instructing these new pilots, especially in the C-17 I started to notice a trend. The new automated FMC jets have a lot of capability. As someone mentioned, I could teach my grandmother to fly an A-320 or B-787. The disturbing trend I noticed is their reactions when the automation hiccuped, and the automation level was degraded to basic heading hold or flight level change, or even worse, no autopilot, these younger pilots were lost. Think of what happens to these folks when they lose their cell phones and suddenly have to figure things out on their own. Panic ensues.
The advantage of flying a C-152 around the patch for a few hundred hours is you develop hand flying skills, and BASIC instrument skills. I saw this behavior numerous times in the C-17 when we lost our automation and Nav capabilities (called degrade mode) and the younger pilots were totally lost. One instance, We were enroute to an Air Refueling and we lost our Timing control. I explained to the new pilot to compute our ground speed, divide by 6 to figure our miles per minute, then figure out what time we need to meet the tanker and accelerate or slow down to make our timing. She never had to do this, and had no clue. Us older guys arenít superior to the younger ones, but most of us flew dumbed down planes for years so we have a ďTool KitĒ of skills that mitigate issues when we lose automation, they donít. Our mission as experienced pilots Is to pass on and teach the younger generation some of these ďtricksĒ we used back in the day . I just took my annual checkride and the scenario I was tasked with had no auto-throttles and VNAV inop..Not a big deal because I flew for 20 years without either one.
Marvellous...tanx for this lil written gem...cheers from Portugal, the land of the sun
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Old 21st Jan 2022, 03:26
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Beautifully said Chiefttp. Thanks for sharing your experience. I also used this trick every time I’m flying: Gs/6 and then times X to know my vertical speed required for a X degrees flight path. It’s sad to see many pilots just relying on the MCDU predictions. They don’t do their own calculations in their head. Why would you?! The FMS will tell you! That’s in the head of lots of pilots sadly. For sure guys like us who has the chance to fly very conventional aircraft, we have an advantage. But I believe we can teach the new guys from our experience and they can be as good if not better if they are willing to fly modern airliners in safely and efficient way. It’s important to maintain some of these old habits otherwise you become automation addicted and rusty. Airbus made a nice video ( available for free on Win videos) about it and they explain that basic flying skills is like a sport. If you run like once every 6 months, well you won’t do great and no improvement. But if you run 2 / 3 times a week, not only you will improve fast but you will be at an excellent level. I can not agree more on this. Pilots underestimate how fast their skills will erode if no effort is made to maintain them. I offered to my colleagues to fly raw data and I heard before: ę Nah I’m confident with my flying skills Ľ and then you hear their names coming up how poorly their perform in the sim. xD

Last edited by pineteam; 21st Jan 2022 at 04:01. Reason: Typo
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