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Had my first full size flying lesson!

okay - it was a 90 minute trial....

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FilmBuff13/09/2017 14:03:58
257 forum posts
28 photos

Just back from an amazing experience with 2Excel Training at Sywell, flying an AT-3, which seemed smaller than some of the models on the show circuit...

At the briefing, the instructor declared that as I can fly models he'll give me control "just after take off". He was true to his word. Bob retracted the flaps and told me the plane needs a bit of right rudder in the climb out and that I had control! A few words about speed, climb rate and using the trim wheel until the stick went light and that was it - a practically hands free climb to 3,000 feet. Once achieved I trimmed for level flight and trouble free progress to Rutland Water. This became interesting quite quickly as we entered in RAF Wittering air space!

Bob dealt with the chatter from ATC and I was soon flying 360 circuits both ways around the reservoir. We turned for home and tracked 210 to Pitsford and ultimately back to Sywell. Bob took the stick for the final circuit and landing - which he did using a cut and glide technique - with the engine just idling. A great experience, and I was glad I had left my credit card at home!

Some observations from me:

  • Flying around really is very easy - it's just the take off and landing that's the problem!
  • The FPV view is very different - I became lost very quickly!
  • Having a knowledge of model flying really helps. Back stick in the turns, understanding role of elevator and throttle etc
  • Without the headset on - it's very noisy!

A great experience and I will seriously consider going all in and learning to fly once I can get out of my crazy hours rat race job and go into semi retirement!

Ian Jones13/09/2017 20:19:45
3219 forum posts
1397 photos

You've got choice of a couple of Spitfire T9s you can have a go at there too!

FilmBuff14/09/2017 09:33:58
257 forum posts
28 photos
Posted by Ian Jones on 13/09/2017 20:19:45:

You've got choice of a couple of Spitfire T9s you can have a go at there too!

Saw that - but eye-watering expense!

Denis Watkins14/09/2017 10:41:49
4198 forum posts
85 photos

Don't wait to make time for this, if you want to fly, then make time now

If PPL is your bag, and you wait for retirement, you can finish up with less funds than you planned

Even less time than you planned, and in my case, health issues

I waited for retirement and finished up unfit to fly.

FilmBuff14/09/2017 10:56:25
257 forum posts
28 photos

Thanks @Denis. It won't be lack of funds that will hold me back.

It's freeing up the time at the moment. I plan to throw in the full-time towel in 2-3 years time when I'm 58!

Josip Vrandecic -Mes14/09/2017 11:02:39
2993 forum posts
260 photos

Do not wait to take a flight hours ... this is an unforgettable experience after which nothing is the same  thumbs up

Happy flying

Edited By Josip Vrandecic -Mes on 14/09/2017 11:04:54

Jonathan M14/09/2017 11:40:11
671 forum posts
275 photos

For my fiftieth the Woman bought me a half hour in a Tiger Moth, I chipped in some extra and made it a full hour.

It had been a very long time since I was in the front seat of a Chippie as an air cadet, but - exactly as you describe - even basic RC flying skills certainly transfer. For ordinary flying (no aerobatics on the old bird), it was just very gentle 'forefinger-and-thumb' style tweaks on the control column.

Great fun. Not sure I'll ever go down the PPL route though... not enough time for my modest free flight scale ambitions, let alone all the RC!

Tim Flyer14/09/2017 12:48:18
1220 forum posts
231 photos

I must admit I am in "two minds" about full size flying . Whilst loving planes and also been taken on flying experience in a Chipmunk as a youth I think I would say I prefer flying the models at the moment. My last full size experience was a month ago in a 4 seat Cessna. We went flying down Lochness and among the Highlands out of Inverness so yes the views were magnificent and experience great. However being bumped around by the wind in a small plane does worry me a bit and I must admit it does make me think that I am happy to be an occasional flyer with instructor rather than PPL. Models are easy to put away and the controls on the Cessna I must say felt rather stiff and "wooden" compared to a model.

Ian Jones14/09/2017 12:53:29
3219 forum posts
1397 photos
Posted by FilmBuff on 14/09/2017 09:33:58:
Posted by Ian Jones on 13/09/2017 20:19:45:

You've got choice of a couple of Spitfire T9s you can have a go at there too!

Saw that - but eye-watering expense!

Yes, for the price you'd be well into your PPL training.

Stuart Z14/09/2017 16:19:33
390 forum posts

You can always try full size gliders.

Possibly a less onerous medical and every bit as enjoyable flying with the challenge of trying to stay aloft. Very challenging and good at a lower cost. I logged around a dozen different types and solo'ed many of them with a mix of winch and aerotow, at 4 or 5 different club fields.

Well worth a go!


FilmBuff14/09/2017 16:22:55
257 forum posts
28 photos

@StuartZ I agree - Husband's Bosworth is just up the road from me too! Much cheaper and I guess gliding is my RC modelling spiritual home. 5 day course for £695 with 20 winch launches and 5 aero tows looks like a very good deal. And a guarantee to solo price of £1,250.

Stuart Z14/09/2017 17:10:35
390 forum posts

Film buff,

I have spent 3 or 4 weeks at HusBos some years back. 1st solo there ( in a Puchasz) and 1st aerotow there (in their graceful old Bocian) and first hour long solo flight there as well. Have also solo'ed out of the Long Mynd and Wormingford. It's a great pastime and very rewarding.


Former Member14/09/2017 18:36:28
3578 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

Ian Jones15/09/2017 16:33:38
3219 forum posts
1397 photos

3 Extra 300Ls from there just flew past my house in Middlewich, as I type just reaching Warrington.

Wes16/09/2017 22:02:32
14 forum posts

I'm learning to fly a 3-axis microlight

Looks like a plane and the performance is amazing

I fly from Sussex and a few ago flew across to Le Touqet then on to Abbeville for a weekend, nice way to learn to fly.

Currently working on landing...not as easy as you may think. The approach if fine is the final approach Speed, round out and flare that I'm finding tricky.

Martin Whybrow17/09/2017 01:19:46
884 forum posts
33 photos

Had my first hands-on in a Cessna 182 about 25 years ago, then a Piper PA28 about 4 years ago; also had an hour in a 737-800 simulator a couple of years ago, a very worthwhile experience if you get the chance (if you're anywhere near Cambridge and fancy a try, I can put you in contact with the operator of the sim). On Monday, I have an entire day of glider training at Cambridge Gliding Centre, courtesy of my brother (my 50th birthday gift from him, he knows me well!)

Mike Stevens17/09/2017 08:21:27
464 forum posts
57 photos

Just had my 60th B'day and first ever commercial flight to Dublin and back! Had a couple of present given to me by family - one hour flying taster flight and an hour's glider flight - I think they might have been checking my life policy - I don't have a head for heights so might well be

Martin Harris17/09/2017 11:11:39
9171 forum posts
242 photos

People with vertigo don't seem to be affected in aircraft - I think it's to do with sitting inside rather than looking over an edge but as I'm lucky enough to enjoy heights that's by observation and comments from passengers/pupils - many of whom have expressed being pleasantly surprised.

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