CPL Flight test tips

A place to have your say and ask your questions on anything in the Helicopter learning environment.
skyjynx80
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CPL Flight test tips

Postby skyjynx80 » Sun Feb 3 2019, 08:37

Hi Everyone,

I have my flight test coming up mid march and looking for some good advice from you experienced pilots for the ground and flight component of the test.
I would love to hear any tips that might help me out or to get me more prepared.

Things like if should be requesting anything from the examiner, should I say all my procedures/ flow checks etc out loud or just treat him like a passenger, best prep for the navex, any specific theory I need to know off by heart or If I can reference publications and so on.

Any advice would be a great help to settle my nerves and make sure I am doing the right things leading up to my big day.

Thankyou in advance

Z
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Hello Pilots
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby Hello Pilots » Sun Feb 3 2019, 09:05

Umm just putting it out there, if you need to ask an online forum for advice on you CPL Flight Test Preperaton, may I offer my advice.
Change flight schools.
skyjynx80
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby skyjynx80 » Sun Feb 3 2019, 09:52

I get the point that you make, but as lovely as that would be to do so, that is not an option due to the aircraft I have done all my training in. I know!, error on my behalf. Should of used an R22.
Probbo
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby Probbo » Sun Feb 3 2019, 10:03

The training school that you have paid 10,s of thousands of dollars should have you flying to a basic commercial standard and prepare you for the flight test.
Follow documented procedures and treat the testing officer as a fare paying pax. Take your time! The testing officer will be looking for a basic skill set,which you should already have and more importantly good decision making/judgement.
The flight test could be nerve racking but should also be exciting. A good testing officer IMO will not only test you but will also impart knowledge.
Good luck!
Slapstick
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby Slapstick » Sun Feb 3 2019, 10:11

Hi skyjynx,

As was mentioned earlier, your flight school should really be the ones to prep you for your flight test. They would almost always usually use the same testing officer so they should know what he looks for.

Given you didn’t do your time in a 22 I’m guessing a 300 then?

Know the manual for the aircraft and the specific aircrafts empty weight. Know your flight schools ops manual (fuel burns, TAS etc). Get on CASA’s website and download form 61-1491 which is the CPL flight test report. The testing officer will test you on those items.

Most flight schools have their own oral examination “cheat sheet”. I suggest you ask your school if such a thing exists.
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Evil Twin
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby Evil Twin » Sun Feb 3 2019, 10:51

Hmmmm...... Relax, fly to the standard that you have been trained for and make sure you have a good level of understanding of the required legislation and anything you may be required to know in flight that you are unable to refer to any documentation for. FFS stay away from any cheat sheets and just have a sound basic knowledge of aviation theory. Have a good understanding of aviation law relating to a commercial licence and know where to look for things in the AIP. If you don't know something, say so and don't bullsh1t. You have to be recommended for a test so your flight school should be confident putting you up for one, ask your instructors if there are any weak points or areas in which you could do better, if they answer in the affirmative, work on those areas and don't take it personally. The examiner doesn't want you to suck their d1ck they just want to know that you're safe and you're unlikely to bring trouble to anyones door. If they're happy to send you up with their kids you're good to go.
skyjynx80
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby skyjynx80 » Sun Feb 3 2019, 12:07

Thankyou to everyone for the advice.

School has said I am ready for the examiner, but some great points mentioned that I wasnt aware of.

Still have a bit of time to get ready, still early days just getting a headstart on the preperation, want to do well.
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hand in pants
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby hand in pants » Sun Feb 3 2019, 21:38

Mate, biggest thing is to try to relax. I s#!t myself EVERY flight test/check. Even when it's with an examiner that knows less than me.
But that aside, the examiner should let you know how he wants to be treated, generally not like a passenger as he has to assess what your doing and your thought process as you do it.
Do as you did on the last flight with your CFI (who recommended you for the test) and you'll do well. The examiner will take into account test nerves, but they aren't a "get out of jail free" card.
think before you talk, think before you do, don't s#!t and you'll do well.

Good luck, this is just the first of your career flight tests/checks.

Let us know how you go.
Hand in Pants, I'm thinking, my god, that IS huge!!!!!!!!
skyjynx80
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby skyjynx80 » Wed Feb 6 2019, 05:14

Thats all a boost in confidence.
I’m booked in for 11th of March, providing there are no more floods.
Hopefully I can report good news.
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby actionman » Thu Feb 7 2019, 03:19

Hi Skyjynx,
Not a lot of actual help there, I know what it is like leading up to the flight test, if you’re are lucky you will know the testing officer, might even be from your training organisation, this can be good and bad. It doesn’t help saying relax, that is not going to happen until you are about half way through the test and you haven’t yet heard those 3 devastating words “TAKE ME HOME”.
I was a theory instructor for a few years and as such was involved in many pre and post briefings and got to learn all the simple mistakes that a tough testing officers will trip you up on..

Remember don’t think of the testing officer as a testing officer. This is your very first client that has booked you for a job. You are given all the details for the job the day before, make sure you are familiar with every aspect of the job. If you are flying to places you have not been before, put the whole mission into google earth and fly it in google earth, compare the your nav points on the map to what is actually on the ground, something that may look substantial on the map maybe very little on the ground. Be aware of the refuel points along your route so that when the plan changes and it will change, know what you can and can’t do and if at any point your client makes a request that is unreasonable or in your opinion may put the aircraft or mission into an undesirable state then remember who is in charge, he or she is just the client, they can request what they like, “Sorry we can’t do that because” give a reason, which can be expanded on during the debrief.
The client is likely wanting to land in a very tight spot as part of his or her job, it will be up to you so say no but I can put you in some 500mt away, much more suitable. Remember if you land somewhere where you can’t get out with 2 POB up, then I can tell you 2 things that will happen at that point, you will fail and you will be walking..
As much as you will probably be flying around familiar country and as much as you will know all the little lakes rivers and small towns, you make sure you are 100 percent sure that when asked “what is that town down there” you give the correct answer, that is a trap and will end in tears if you are wrong.
Always know when the aircraft needs to be on the ground because of fuel constraints, your client is going to push this to the limits. Examples: you have just enough fuel to do the various photo shoots from the air the client has requested, you are on the final shoot doing orbits when the client see something and want to land to get better shots or just even chew up an extra 5 min to push you into your reserve, DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN. If you land and the examiner heads for the dip stick it is likely you are going to fail as he or she already knows that you have gone into your reserve. Always be ready to cut the mission short because headwinds have chewed up time.. Clients are always want to get more than they paid for and put you under pressure.
Some way through your test which is not really a test it is a job, you will be asked if you can pop 20nm or more out of the way to pick up another point of interest, at which point is very helpful to know all the little refuel points around the area, if you know you can go and it is not jeopardising the safety of the mission then go, be prepared for the complete plan to change but be flexible enough to change with it and be comfortable about the change. As part of the previous day planning try to pre-empt a couple of diversions, "now if I was the client where would I want to go"
Be mindful of the weather and last light, another couple of traps you might be led into, remember they are just the client.
You will no doubt be asked to justify some of your decisions of the flight during your debrief, and it may very well be these answers that give you a pass or a fail so be very careful about your answers. Statement like “it was my opinion that I had 1000ft clearance below the cloud while on decent to 3000ft” they are looking that you know the facts..
Depending on how the flight went the debrief can be quite arduous, remembering it is also going to cover your KDRs.

So just to add a little more
Radio calls , know the correct format for the calls to and from controlled airspace and who to call, be across all the procedures inbound and outbound to/from non-towered aerodromes as well as transit area frequencies. Be ready to have to make changes in the air to your SAR time, know who to call..

Controlled airspace
Be wary of clearances by air traffic controller that may put you in conflict with the with cloud and even the over built up areas. When given a clearance to enter controlled airspace at 1000 ft, this is more than likely not going to give a 1000 feet clearance to the built up area below. It has happened in the past, you will have to request a higher altitude to remain clear of the built up area. You are the pilot in command it is your responsibility to maintain the correct clearances.
You will already be across the maintaining of your clearance track and altitude while in controlled airspace.

There is probably a lot more to add, but you will just have to wait for the book to come out lol..
One thing I might add, is inbound and outbound from non-controlled/towered or remote aerodromes, especially if there are no other aircraft around, This will be open to debate but it is my view that you don’t have to nominate a runway you can make your approach directly to your landing sight. If there is traffic and an active runway then make your approach parallel to the active run way on the side and approach directly to your landing area, try to eliminate any taxi maneuver as much as possible. Same with departing, if the aerodrome is not in use you can depart on track and your radio call can reflect that fact. That is just a side note but you will already have a process for that, for me its about the most cost effective method from ground back to ground in the safest possible manner fitting within the rules..
All the best and I hope I wasn't a bore..
AM
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VBlade
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby VBlade » Thu Feb 7 2019, 20:05

Top post Actionman.

Some really good notes for someone preparing for a flight test.

Whens the book coming out? :lol:
Icefather
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby Icefather » Fri Feb 8 2019, 00:50

I was always told to just do what you’ve been trained to do and don’t invent any new manoeuvres just keep it simple and think before you do anything.

And when a manoeuvre goes wrong or you stuff something up just move on and don’t focus on what happened else it will distract you from what’s next :)
skyjynx80
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Re: CPL Flight test tips

Postby skyjynx80 » Sun Feb 10 2019, 04:32

Thankyou again everyone.
So many of my questions answered.

Appreciated.

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