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Need CFI for Lessons in IN

Posted By:
Aaron Reiter
4
Posts
0
#1 Posted: 2/15/2011 10:07:00

Hello,

I am interested in finding an instructor around Indianapolis, IN for a private license. Is there anywhere the group recommends I go to find a listing of such?

I live in Indianapolis, but could easily get to Greenwood or Franklin airports for lessons.

I read around online and it is highly recommended to ask local pilots or those of a good organization for opinions on where to get instruction. Obviously, my fellow EAA members would be my best resource here. What are your thoughts?

Thanks a million.



Aaron Reiter
4
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0
#2 Posted: 2/15/2011 14:14:59

If a personal suggestion is not possible, I would be happy with a recommendation for any other outlets or resources that list available instructors in my area.

Thanks a lot.



Bill Greenwood
Warbirds of America MemberYoung Eagles Pilot or Volunteer
121
Posts
24
#3 Posted: 2/15/2011 22:25:38

Aaron, you are very smart to shop around for a good CFI. I don;t know your area in Indy, but suggest you phone or go online and see which if any CFIs are member of EAA, and especially a branch in your area like Warbirds or Vintage or Acro, etc.

Also go visit the area flight schools and FBO, walk up to the counter and see what kind of reception you get. Sometime it is not very good, the marketing and people skills of some of these places is lackadaisical and below par.

Find the students in the study area or restaurant and see who they like and most important who they don;t like.

There are some CFIs these days that really string student pilots along, and bleed your bank account dry. I read of one guy who had 32 hours and the CFI stiil had not had him solo. 

I cannot say beyond any doubt that an older instructor is better or a younger one.

The older man may have flown many more types of planes and know about the real world of flying, the younger man may be more current on how to teach. You have to find one that communicates best with you, and who really cares if you become a good pilot.

You don't say what your longer term goals are or what area you are most interested in. 

There are some expert pilots who do teach, you don't have to settle for average.

Good luck, and go get em and let us know how it goes.



John Mahany
Young Eagles Pilot or VolunteerAirVenture Volunteer
1
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0
#4 Posted: 2/17/2011 22:35:15

Finding a local CFI, you can start with the local schools at the airports you mention. You could also get in touch with the local FAA office, called the FSDO (Flight Standard District Office) and ask for names of local pilot examiners (DPE) who administer the Private Pilot Checkride. Contact a DPE to see which CFI's they recommend, based on which CFI's students are best prepared for the checkride.

There are also two national CFI organizations that you can check with, which list CFI's by state. You can see if any might be in your area. The two are SAFE (Society of Aviation and Flight Educators) and NAFI (National Association of Flight Instructors). I speak from experience, having previously been a NAFI member, and I am founding member of SAFE. Both organizations have among their membership the top tier of CFI's nationwide. The websites for each are; www.safepilots.org and www.nafinet.org

Interview prospective CFI's. Ask them about their experience, how long they have been flying and teaching flying, how many students they have sent for checkrides and how many students have passed on their first attempt, etc. Ask about their syllabus, and how they conduct a lesson. Be willing to pay more for quality. Make sure you get ground training before and after you fly, and pay them for their time on the ground. That's an important part of flight training that is often overlooked at the primary level. Too many don't do this. It is part of the training at the advanced level, where I teach now.

Please don't go cheap. It's your life. The chemistry between you and the instructor is extremely important. Make sure it's a good fit and that you get along. If it does not work out, discuss it with them, and then be ready to fire them if need be and find another instructor. It's your money and your life. A good instructor will make all the difference. A bad instructor will cost you more money.  

Good luck,

John Mahany

ATP/CFI

Master CFI

Long Beach, CA



Frank Giger
Homebuilder or Craftsman
117
Posts
33
#5 Posted: 3/1/2011 02:12:47 Modified: 3/1/2011 02:32:58

"Please don't go cheap. It's your life. The chemistry between you and the instructor is extremely important. Make sure it's a good fit and that you get along. If it does not work out, discuss it with them, and then be ready to fire them if need be and find another instructor. It's your money and your life. A good instructor will make all the difference. A bad instructor will cost you more money.  "

Quoted for emphasis.  At around two hundred dollars an hour (assuming plane rental) the effort to "make the relationship work" doesn't make sense.  You'll learn more and have it really sink in if you're in synch with the instructor.

I fired my first instructor after the second hour and then got a really great one; probably one of the better decisions I've ever made.

The first guy was competent, easy going, and quiet.  Too quiet.  While many might find it relaxing and reassuring not to have the instructor talking to one and giving constant feedback, it drove me nuts.  I felt like I was carrying a passenger, not an instructor.  I had no idea if I should be doing things better, consistently the same as I was demonstrating, or what.  He was so calm and put together that it looked almost like I was boring him.

Classic case of student/instructor mismatch.  We parted ways amiacably - he probably thought I was a nut and glad to get rid of me.

My second instructor and I hit it off right away, and while some might not like an instructor that constantly evaluated (in a very positive way) and talked about the why of things, it was precisely the sort of pilot training I was looking for.

Neither instructor was part of a big school.  The first was half of their total instructor cadre, the second was a one man show.

 

 



Aaron Reiter
4
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0
#6 Posted: 3/4/2011 13:39:49

Great advice, Frank. Thanks for sharing that experience. I will certainly try to find an instructor that meshes with my personality. I enjoy a volume of instruction/tips when learning a new skill as well.



Aaron Reiter
4
Posts
0
#7 Posted: 3/4/2011 13:43:29

John and Bill,

Thanks for the resources. A huge help. My main interest is to get my license and do some recreational flying of smaller craft and branch that out into flying out to vacation, etc. with the family. I do not own a plane, so I would be renting. Would a municipal airport be a better place to inquire vs. a large airport?

Sorry for the late reply as I'd subscribed to this post via email and wouldn't you know it - I never was updated via email that you guys had posted this great information here. Thanks again.