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How much time on the ground do you taxi wheather as owner or student

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I was speaking to a guy learning to fly (no names or place where he trains) and he said it costs him around 15 to 20 mins out of his one hour lesson just to get into the air and back to shutdown.

So really he is getting a "flying value" of 40 mins ish on average of flying, whilst paying dual rates for an hour. Also the same problem for people that would fly solo as well.

So

What's your average taxi time on the ground for a flight and back to the hangar?

 

Also what's the worst airport that you guys know of that takes 15 mins or more on average to get to fly

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About four minutes to take off and less after landing. In that time my engine is hot enough to use full power except maybe on a very cold winter day. If you are talking about Rotax engines they seem to take forever to get warm.

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Posted (edited)

I advise people to train in a regional ctaf at least initally, due to less time wasted.

 

The Rotax does take a while normally. I've cut it down substantially to the point of just run-up, taxi and go. (At least while at my hangar)

With electric heater pads plugged into a mains transformer (heats oil and crankcase) and oil thermostat.

Edited by Guest

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At YMMB my standard is 0.2 before takeoff and 0.1 after landing. In winter it can take that 0.2 for the oil temp to get to the required figure. I've operated at a CTAF with about 2/3 that ground time (except in winter) on average.

From YMMB it can take a little time to get to and from the training area so some more lost time perhaps, depending on the exercises.

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This VDO-FS difference is the bread and butter of flight schools and that's why they love having their students do circuits.

 

Between 0.2/0.3 is my average VDO-FS difference flying in and out of Moorabbin. I regularly peeked at the trip sheets of C172 at one of my flight schools. Over a month, I'd often find that FS = 75% VDO. Common pitfalls include: run-up bays full, long queue of aircraft at the holding point awaiting clearance on busy circuit days. I've long been advocating for rates to be based on flight switch instead of VDO. Obviously if you're going to hire an aircraft for a longer period of time, make it a nonnegotiable point that you pay flight switch and not VDO, and preferably dry rate because fuel is (almost) always reimbursed at local rates.

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Posted (edited)

When I was based at Cairns airport it was horrendous. Sometimes half an hour from start up to lift off.

I’d get taxi clearance and head off to the holding point and then sit there waiting waiting waiting. Heavy metal coming in, stacked up two or three off into the glide slope and others leaving.

 

I had several times I had to shut down because of overheating while waiting and a few others where I had to turn the aircraft across the taxiway to get prevailing wind into the engine.

 

Apart from that convenience of close to home I was very happy to move out to Atherton airport when the owners of the airport started screwing everyone on cost.

Edited by Guest

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Learning out of lillydale is pretty great,

literally the time it takes to do the checklists and run-up checks, then taxi straight to the runway.

occasionally do an enter and rolling. think Ive had to wait for another plane to clear once in my 8 hours of lessons so far.

 

Admittedly I only fly on thursday mornings, so unlikely to be the busiest time

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I'd say about 5 minutes from start up to takeoff. I have never actually measured it so I will tomorrow. I just make sure that CHT & Oil temp are in the green before takeoff. Probably about 2 minutes from touchdown to shutdown outside the hangar.

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Posted (edited)

oh should probably mention that the instructors run the engines up before the lesson,

I can feel the heat when checking oil (very nice in the cooler mornings), and the T's and P's are usually in at the start of the green or just touching the yellow sections when I start it.

Edited by Guest

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Getting current on the Rotax-powered Tecnam & Foxbat was an expensive PITA waiting for it to warm up. Flying my own -9A, I go full power as soon as the oil temperature is over 100*F, usually that's the time it takes me to program the GPS and get to the end of the runway at Somersby, unless it's an early winters morning.

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Posted (edited)

One would think that if a flying school had any bookings at all for that day, the CFI would, as the first job of the day, carry out the daily inspections of each aircraft (or delegate the task to an instructor or other competent person) to make sure each aircraft was fit to fly. That would include an engine start and systems check. That would put some warmth into the engine.

 

It seems to me that many flying schools take a too laid back approach to operations. How often do you see instructors hanging around the school, like whores at the Chicken Ranch?

 

HOBBS -v- TACHO TIME

The Hobbs meter tells the pilots and engineers for how many hours the master switch has been ON, or the engine oil pressure has been "in the green". Tacho time is similar to Hobbs time but instead of measuring actual hours that the engine is running by using oil pressure or alternator activation, Tacho time measures engine RPMs.

 

Most flight schools use Hobbs time for charging customers an hourly aircraft rental rate. Tacho time is the preferred method for logging engine time for maintenance purposes. Since Tacho time cycles through the numbers slower at idle and low throttle settings, and faster at higher power settings, and Hobbs meters are a clock that measures the time between Master "On" and Master "Off", the difference between Hobbs and Tacho time can be up to 20 percent. The Hobbs meter reading will be higher, meaning less actual air time per flight.

 

The use of Tacho time encourages students and aircraft renters to utilize lower power settings instead of higher power, which is easier on the engines and more fuel-efficient. When was the last time that you flew at a 65% power setting, or used any tailwind component to allow you to use less power, but maintain the usual cruise speed of your aircraft? It will also increase your range as the quoted range in an aircraft's specs is usually the range at 75% power. Have you ever experimented to find out what the lowest engine revs your plane requires to maintain straight and level flight at constant altitude?

 

Using the Hobbs meter for determining flight time is a winner for the flying school, especially if you are suffering long waiting times to get to start you take-off roll. Using the Tacho reading for determining your total engine hours will save you money in maintenance costs that are length of usage costs.

 

So, if you want to get more air time for your dollar, negotiate with the flying school to be charged by tacho time. If they baulk at that, there's always the school next door. If you want to log your PIC or Dual time, wear a watch and record your start and stop times.

 

Also, if it's your own plane, look at flight planning using a combination of tailwind and power setting to get a suitable ground speed. (If you are a recreational pilot, simply out to "commit aviation with forethought" why do you have to run your engine with the throttle to the wall?)

Edited by old man emu
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I fly from a country airfield (Warwick) and my own aeroplane. Start up from cold until oil temps in the green takes a wee bit more time in cold weather than hot (Obviously!) but around ten minutes average (That’s a guess!). Taxi to 27 takes about 2minutes, 09 probably 5minutes. Don’t often have to worry about traffic.

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I fly from a country airfield (Warwick) and my own aeroplane. Start up from cold until oil temps in the green takes a wee bit more time in cold weather than hot (Obviously!) but around ten minutes average (That’s a guess!). Taxi to 27 takes about 2minutes, 09 probably 5minutes. Don’t often have to worry about traffic.

 

Cold to Green = 10 minutes

Taxi time out = 2 to 5 minutes

Taxi time in = 2 to 5 minutes

Minimum Hobbs time = ( 10 + 2 + 2) is 14 minutes

Maximum Hobbs time = ( 10 + 5 + 5) is 20 minutes.

Minimum tacho time = (14 x 0.8) is 11 minutes

Maximum tacho time = (20 x 0.8) is 18 minutes

 

Let's say that the aircraft hire rate is $150/ hour.

Cost of minimum Hobbs time = 150 x (14/60) = $35

Cost of minimum tacho time = 150 x (11/60) = $ 27.50

 

Difference: Minimum Hobbs time > minimum tacho time by $7.50

 

Cost of maximum Hobbs time = 150 x (20/60) = $50

Cost of maximum tacho time = 150 x (18/60) = $45

 

Difference: Maximum Hobbs time > maximum tacho time by $5.00

 

Say that you do 50 hours in training, the saving by using tacho time:

20 minute taxying = 50 x $5 = $250

14 minute taxying = 50 x $7.50 = $375

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Posted (edited)

I sometimes think of charging my aeroplane out on flight switch rather than VDO (engine running time). I'd still want the same income as my costs remain the same and I want the same margin so for an hour flight (logged by the pilot) and 0.7 (average) on the flight switch (for aircraft maintenance) I would increase the rate by 43%.

 

There will be no savings to hirers, just no pressure to hurry on the ground.

 

Most flight schools charge out SE aeroplanes based on VDO as that is what pilots log and instructor award wages are based on.

 

One of my friends had his aeroplane online at a flight school which he charged out on tacho time instead of VDO as the aeroplane didn't have a VDO. His rate was a bit higher than his competitor but cheaper effectively but all pilots saw on the rate sheet was a higher price so few chose to fly it.

 

I did some dual in it and charged my time per my watch from engine start to engine stop - he complained as the tacho time was less! I don't accept getting my own pay on tacho time!

Edited by Guest
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Perhaps flying school should look at the way they determine rates of pay.

 

If an instructor is being paid according to the times recorded by some device that only records the time the plane has a pilot in the driver's seat, then how do you reward them for time spent showing a student the correct way to pre-flight, or even the time spent in pre-lesson briefing and post-lesson debriefing? Surely flying schools should be like maintenance facilities where employees are paid a set wage each week. That way, it would not matter to instructors if their time was being spent in ground school or in the air. It might give us pilots of a higher competence.

 

There is the problem, of course, of the young commercially licensed pilot who is just at the flying school to build up hours. For one, they don't have the experience that the old, "always been an instructor" blokes have, nor do they have the skills to effectively instruct. For another, in any other learning situation, an instructor is required to have undertaken training in how to teach. Not so for the holder of a flight instructor's licence.

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If an instructor is being paid according to the times recorded by some device that only records the time the plane has a pilot in the driver's seat, then how do you reward them for time spent showing a student the correct way to pre-flight, or even the time spent in pre-lesson briefing and post-lesson debriefing?
That's per the pilot's award, used to be lucky to even get as much as the award. Supposed to cover time spent on things mentioned there.

 

Surely flying schools should be like maintenance facilities where employees are paid a set wage each week. That way, it would not matter to instructors if their time was being spent in ground school or in the air. It might give us pilots of a higher competence.
Seems to me that the often despised "sausage factories" operate that way but not all the smaller schools and aero clubs where instructors often only get paid for flying . Regardless, air time matters as that is the usual KPI for progression through any flight training syllabus.

 

For another, in any other learning situation, an instructor is required to have undertaken training in how to teach. Not so for the holder of a flight instructor's licence.

Part 61 introduced the mandatory requirement for instructors to be trained and tested in principles and methods of instruction ....
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Thanks, djpacro. Thanks for the corrections.

 

"air time matters as that is the usual KPI for progression through any flight training syllabus. "

 

But it should be competency, not time with the engine running, that determines progression. Also, the times set out in the syllabus are MINIMA.

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it depends on load. It can be really busy time in Bankstown, with planes landing in constant flow (to be 4 in landing queue when reporting Warwick for 29R - this is not unusual!) and queue on holding point to take off. Regular time is 10 mins from battery on to take off with all taxiing, checks, waiting etc, but it can be more than 20 mins.

 

Landing is usually fast, to be ordered GA due to busy runway is rather rare situation, ATC prefer to line up everybody in air and sometimes to divert someone to central rwy.

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Posted (edited)

Depends on how one structures their business.

E.g. in the club I was a member of for many years we charged VDO for training and tacho for private hire on the singles.

CHTR profit was also used to subsidise training as it was a club.

As djpacro stated you have to cover the costs of running the business (both staff & aircraft etc) or you won’t last long in the business.

Edited by Guest
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For me it is the exact opposite situation: I pay flight time, but log block-off-time. I like that because I don't have to hurry on ground, and if I hit a wave of heavy traffic I just loose time, not money. For short flights I log substantially more time than I pay for. The minimum flight time is 30 minutes, preventing overuse of this.

Typical time is 10 minutes till lift off, which is about the minimum time in winter to warm up the Rotax. Maximum time was 20 minutes.

On the way back the situation is vice versa: If I hit heavy traffic I am circling on my budget, not on the owner's. But I can't complain: Air traffic control is mostly very good in squeeze us small ones in between the heavier planes.

Taxiing back then normally takes 2 minutes.

I like that distribution, knowing the hourly rate is higher if it is flight time and not block-off-time.

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Posted (edited)

In beautiful downtown AlburyYMAY it's about 3 to 4 mins to run up area and depending on how slow I am we obtain a clearance almost immediately. And on landing straight back to the hangar. Great controllers here in Albury

Edited by Country Flyer

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Flying my own -9A, I go full power as soon as the oil temperature is over 100*F, usually that's the time it takes me to program the GPS and get to the end of the runway at Somersby, unless it's an early winters morning.
Same here, that's the figure in my Super Decathlon's AFM. Interestingly, my Lycoming manual simply states: "Engine is warm enough for take-off when the throttle can be opened without the engine faltering."

 

I've flown other Decathlons where someone has changed the oil pressure gauges over the years. One has no marking so those pilots who call out "temps and pressures in the green" and then carry on without thinking have me thinking. Another has 160 deg F as the bottom of the green - one winter morning an instructor sat on the ground for almost all of his student's one hour lesson waiting for it to warm up!

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Perhaps flying school should look at the way they determine rates of pay.

 

If an instructor is being paid according to the times recorded by some device that only records the time the plane has a pilot in the driver's seat, then how do you reward them for time spent showing a student the correct way to pre-flight, or even the time spent in pre-lesson briefing and post-lesson debriefing? Surely flying schools should be like maintenance facilities where employees are paid a set wage each week. That way, it would not matter to instructors if their time was being spent in ground school or in the air. It might give us pilots of a higher competence.

 

There is the problem, of course, of the young commercially licensed pilot who is just at the flying school to build up hours. For one, they don't have the experience that the old, "always been an instructor" blokes have, nor do they have the skills to effectively instruct. For another, in any other learning situation, an instructor is required to have undertaken training in how to teach. Not so for the holder of a flight instructor's licence.

Hi,

Can’t agree with the statement, “Instructors don’t undertake training in how to teach.” RAAus require a flying instructor to undertake a, PMI (principles and methods of instructing) course, 8 hrs minimum I think.

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I dont know if it is still the case, but the maintenance manual I had for my Rotax said that hours are counted according to when the engine was running. Not air switch. So, if they have to maintain according to hours, it stands to reason that they would charge according to hours,

 

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There is a good safety reason to do what djpraco does, and that is to remove any incentive to rush out. So an airswitch is the costing-out method, and the student can take his time on the ground doing lookout and checks without a financial penalty.

This does not stop you from using tacho time for maintenance purposes.

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