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How to Organize One's PPL Training the Closest to The Real World

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In the U.S.A. and most of the industrialized countries, the training of GA planes pilots have gotten uniformized as it mostly consists into the a base certificate and the PPL -for "Private Pilote Licence"- proper. The PPL is, throug piloting GA planes, the entry into the aviation world. Any apprentice-pilot must first pass through a medical consultation at a specialized physician, which aims to check one's physical ability to pilotage. The base certificate, usually since the age of 15, is a 20-25-flight hours training concluded by a theoretical examination. That certificate allows to fly VFR, by daytime, in a radius of 16 NM from the terrain outside controlled airspace. The apprentice-pilot will have to have performed at least 6 hours of flight in double-command, 4 hours solo and 20 landings. Then, with a total of flight hours -the base certificate included- of 45 (of which at least 25 hours in double-command with a instructor pilot, 10 solo -of which at least 5 hours of navigation flight), a minimal age usually of 17, a theoretical examination and a in-flight one with a examinator pilot, the apprentice eventually gets to the PPL. The PPL allows to fly VFR, by daytime and to carry passengers at no fee. The PPL then constitues the base upon which a GA pilot may obtain varied qualifications allowing to more types of flight like night VFR, mountain flight, etc.

How a PPL training is performed, in terms of time, is mostly at the convenience of the apprentice. The PPL training usually goes from the easiest to the most complicated, under the supervision of a flight instructor as the pilot-apprentice is seated on the left seat of the plane -the pilot in command's seat- and the flight instructor seated right. Each training session first begins with some ground, theoretical exposure by the flight instructor of what is to be practiced during the flight. Such a presentation comprises the theoretical elements at play during that flight. For a training flight dedicated to turn, your flight instructor, for example, will explain to you the point of the differential lift of wings and the consequential need to balance a turn with the rudder. When back to the parking, by the end of the flight, the instructor will also make a debriefing through which he will, for example, stress such or such aspect

The tutorials of our site usually are working like that too, but generally only however as we did not segmented our explanations in training modules of the appropriate duration. Explanations, at the contrary, are displayed in a whole set as, originally, we did not have in sight to write a PPL training cursus similar to the one of the real world. That tutorial thus is a view of how you may use our tutorials the closest to a real world training. Let's remember too that, in the real world, the PPL training is unfolding at a quite rapid pace and your flight instructor is awaiting from you that you have a swift understanding of what he says and demonstrates (likely because pilotage needs quick actions and reactions). A good way to procede, in the real life, is to write down, when back to ground, all is to be -and all you have actually- remembered of the theoretical lesson which preceded the flight, and the additional remarks given by your instructor during, and after the flight. More generally, just try to correctly follow our tutorials. But do not overload you with training and activity! On a other hand, do not try to instantly master every aspect of a lesson and fly session of 20 to 40 minutes during the first sequence of 20 training hours. Get some help too with the flight recording function of FS and even from the autopilot! At last, you will note that a difference in accuracy, generally, may be spotted from how the US training is performed as derived from documentation. As in the USA, accuracy tends to be stressed with accurate techniques and maneuvers, or descriptions in the manual, in other countries, like in France, pilotage tends to be trained to in a more intuitive way, and manuals less technique. You will thus have to also take that point of view into account function of how flight training is generally considered where you'll train

The Base Certificate

A PPL training is usually beginning with a presentation of what a plane is and of how a plane flies (use tutorial 'General presentation of a GA plane'). One just continues through the pre-flight checklist (pre-flight checklist part of tutorial 'The Steps of a Flight in a GA Plane'). Before any flight, that checklist will have to be performed and you will eventually have to perform it by heart. Following that, during 20 hours, you will be trained to the basics of flight, to takeoff and landing, and to the airport traffic pattern. All the sessions dedicated to that have the flight instructor aboard with you, which is termed the 'double-command formation' as the flight instructor is seated right whence he can take the plane's control back. For the beginnings of the training, he also has the plane taking off and landin. note! each stage of a GA flight, from takeoff to landing has its own checklist. All those basic checklists have to learned by heart! That first part of our PPL training is going to ask you to perform some of those checklists; just check those which are to be used with 'The Steps of a Flight in a GA Plane' (Climbing Onboard, Engine Start, Taxiing to the Active, Before Takeoff Check, Take Off, Climb, Departure, Cruising, The Approach, Final, Landing, Clearing the Runway, Taxiing, Cutting Off the Engine and Configuring the Plane for the Parking)


The second part of the PPL training cursus is dedicated to learning the distance, or navigation flight. Like a pilot, you will train into to fly from a terrain to another according to the VFR navigation technique. note: that part of your training needs that you master the checklists of the previous 20 hours and, too, those specific to the current sequence (see 'The Steps of a Flight in a GA Plane' (Take Off, Climb, Departure, Cruising, The Approach)

PPL Examination. Renewal

After the number of flight hours required, the apprentice-pilot is subjected to two examinations, a theoretical, and a practical one. The theoretical examination allow to check, through a multiple-answers questionary whether you have acquired and memorized the theoretical aspect of your training. Questions will be about the plane, gauges, controls, aerodynamical forces, theory of the miscellaneous maneuvers, traffic pattern, navigation, weather, air rules, etc. The practical examination, as far as it is concerned, consists into that you will have to fly a VFR navigation with a flight examinator from your national air administration aboard. He will estimate your pilotage and your navigation as you will have to spell any of the operations you will perform along the flight. The examinator is allowed to ask questions, to have you giving details about a operation, or to order you to a alternate terrain like in a emergency. By the end of that flight, the examinator will decide whether or not you are apt like a private pilot. Should you succeed into both those examinations, you are getting your PPL and become a private pilot. No way to simulate all that in FS however as the FS examinations are not very realistic. Just follow the training above by each step and once the training completed, and with some comparisons allowed (like realistic TV documentaries, Internet, etc.), when you deem that your pilotage, and your navigations, are correct, realistic and smooth, you may rightly decide that you have reached the PPL level

As the PPL is acquired for lifetime, the right to fly which it is granting is, stricto, only associated to it as it is a qualification and thus subject to a number of conditions to be renewed each year. In France, for example, the private pilot will have to have performed, during the 12 months previous to the renewal, 12 flight hours of which 6 like pilot in command, with 12 takeoffs and 12 landings, and one hour of flight with a flight instructor (as that controlled flight may, or not, bring to a obligation of re-training). On a other hand, 3 takeoffs and 3 landings are required in the last 90 days for the pilot to be able to carry passengers

Website Manager: G. Guichard, site Lessons In Microsoft Flight Simulator / Leçons de vol pour les Flight Simulator de Microsoft, Page Editor: G. Guichard. last edited: 5/27/2013. contact us at
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