It is important to understand that since there is no FAA rating for aerobatics or upset attitude training, there is no required course length. We have designed our safety course to explore aerodynamics on all three axis of an airplane and through the full aircraft envelope: from stall to VNE. We always start with a thorough briefing and make sure you understand all the concepts and answer any questions before getting in the air. We teach not only how to do the maneuvers and how to recover from unusual attitudes but also where and how you might get into these unusual attitudes and of course how to avoid these situations.
We start with exploring stalls, oscillation (falling leaf) stalls (which require very good rudder control), accelerated stalls and then enter the spin regime. There on, we spend time each lesson on spins and spin recovery and by the end of the course, you will be comfortable with multiple turn spins recovering on the heading you choose.
Next is inverted flight. If you are interested in aerobatics, you will find that you are in an inverted attitude fairly often, through a roll, a loop, a cuban eight etc.. By mastering the inverted flight, how to get in and out, all other maneuvers will be much easier to learn. If you are just doing this course to build up confidence in upset attitudes, this maneuver will teach you what is happening around the roll axis. It will also teach you how to recover from inadvertent inverted flight safely, whether from wake turbulence or mountain waves. We then go a step further, if you wish, to teach how to come out on a heading and continue with the full roll.
After inverted flight recoveries we explore the vertical axis with the hammerhead. We teach how to trade airspeed for altitude and begin to explore increasing G’s. We also teach how to control an aircraft at minimum speed. After the hammerhead, the basics of aerobatics have been learned in the process and we graduate with the loop. It combines the pulls we learned in the hammerhead with the inverted flight learned previously. The last flight we link all the maneuvers together in a sequence to divide your attention between the maneuver at hand and what you want the aircraft to be doing next. It will help you develop more awareness on all three axis.
On average this course takes about 5 hours to complete. Instructional flights are relatively short due to the proximity of our practice area, and the high performance characteristics of the CAP 10B. Since all the basic maneuvers can be performed without diving for airspeed, little time is spent climbing, and the flights are very efficient. Because of this, about .7 of an hour (40 minutes) is ideal for maximum learning. With this in mind you can expect to receive 7 - 8 flights with a 5 hour block.
We are very flexible with the course and can do more or less depending on your goals, your needs, time available and budget. You might choose to only explore the stall/spin and inverted recovery techniques and fly less hours. If you would like to explore further aerobatics, the safety course will give you a basis to continue training.
After the safety course we move to the basic course which expands on the maneuvers you have already learned. We combine loops with rolls and pulls to get immelmans and cuban 8’s. We explore inverted flight further with inverted turns, inverted stalls and even inverted spins. Then, there is no limits to what you can learn. The CAP 10B is certified to +6, -4.5 g’s and can accomplish the most difficult advanced maneuvers. Believe it or not, you can be ready to compete in an IAC sanctioned contest with as little as 5 hours of training. We try to attend 4 Florida contests a year which are a great way to meet fellow enthusiasts and pit your skills against other pilots.
We would like to add that four of our courses are approved by the FAA under Part 141.57
(Click here to view these courses) and by the VA. By enrolling and completing one of these courses you will receive a certificate stating you have successfully completed the FAA approved course and if you have veterans benefits, you might be able to receive reimbursement for it.
In addition to aerobatic training, we also have a PA-11-65 Cub for primary and tailwheel training. If you would like to work more on tailwheel technique, or know someone who would like to learn to fly without worrying about radios and ATC, this could be the solution.