Frequently asked questions
- Is an FNPT2 better than a basic simulator?
- What do I need to start a CPL course?
- Can I do my IR renewal in the FNPT2?
We have two simulators, a Frasca 142 FNPT 1 and a type specific Duchess FNPT2.
The answer to this question is - it depends!
The Frasca does not have control loading, nor a visual. The FNPT2 has both.
The Frasca is a very useful tool for getting your scan up to speed, and in fact we offer solo time FOC for all current students on IR courses for precisely this reason. However, it does not 'feel' like the real aircraft and you cannot include any visual aspects during the training, like taxying and landing. For instance, with a visual system you can make the decision whether the cloudbase is too low to land.
FNPT2s vary quite a lot in their design from a totally generic twin engined aircraft to being totally type specific.
We decided to opt for the totally type specific option. The layout is almost identical to the Beech Duchess, including all switches, instruments and the radio fit, and even the pedestal with all the trim wheels, carb heat and cowl flaps on it. It has the facility to simulate icing and windshear. There are three levels of wind strength and direction and cloud levels, layers and visibility can all be changed.
It also flies just like the Duchess. We spent 5 days with Alsim in Nantes , where it was manufactured, ensuring that all aspects of flight were as close to the actual aircraft as possible.
Consequently, the transfer from the FNPT2 to the aircraft is straight forward and effective.
One of the important things that we feel about the simulator is that it is not just the design of the equipment that helps with the training, it is also the instruction that you receive on it that counts.
The instructor will try and prepare you for the aircraft by, for instance, using some of the abnormal ATC calls that you find occurring in real life. In addition, all emergencies can be practiced for real in the simulator, including engine failure during take-off.
We believe our FNPT2 is much better than the Frasca 142 for the above reasons.
Beware, not every FNPT2 will be.
You need to have total time of 150 hours flight time in order to start a CPL course.
You need to have 5 night hours before you go for your CPL skill test, consisting of at least 3 hours dual including 1 hour dual cross country flight, plus 5 solo take offs and landings at night.
You also need to have passed all of your ground exams (ATPL or CPL) before taking the CPL skill test. We therefore strongly recommend that you have passed all of your exams before you start your CPL course.
In order to get your CPL issued you also need to have 100 hours P1 and a cross country flight of at least 300 nm including stops at two airfields other than the airfield of departure.
So it would appear that you do not need to have the latter two items before you start your CPL course. However, in order to get the 10 hours dispensation on your IR course (45 hours rather than 55) you need to either be the holder of a CPL or of a Basic Instrument Flight Module certificate. PAT has CAA approval to issue a BIFM certificate after a student has completed the instrument flying section of their CPL course. Therefore it is not necessary to get your CPL issued before you start your IR which, as the CAA is currently taking 6-7 weeks to issue licences, is a good thing!.
However, in order to start an IR course, a pilot has to be the holder of an EASA PPL with night rating, or an EASA CPL. Therefore, you will need to get a night rating issued on your EASA PPL. If you do not hold an EASA (or JAA) PPL you will need to convert your non-EASA PPL to an EASA one. For further information on this please contact Linda Mollison.
A tip: Rather than getting your CPL issued as soon as you have passed it, and your IR issued later, it is cheaper (by at least £119) to get your CPL, Multi rating and IR issued all at the same time. You have one year to get your CPL and your IR issued after passing the tests.
Yes, providing that:
a) a) it has not passed its expiry date (therefore, strictly-speaking, a ‘revalidation’ not a’renewal’) and
b) your last revalidation was not carried out in an FNPT2