Good opportunity or abuse?

flyinguitar

Well-Known Member
Hello fellow JCers,

I've been wanting to run this situation by the folks here to get some advice/opinions.

A good friend of mine flies a Cessna Citation and Conquest for a corporate flight department on the field where I am a CFI/I/MEI. He and I have been buddies since before we were professional pilots. Naturally, when I started working here, the idea of me going along on trips and even getting my SIC training in the jet came up (he is an ATP and the company's insurance allows him to fly as PIC with a minimally qualified SIC).

Now, I should give a little bit of background on the two of us. He worked as a lineman for the local FBO, put out a huge effort networking the local corporate scene, and ended up getting his current job shortly after his commercial checkride. He had made it known on the field that he was available to fly anytime in exchange for experience and networking, which is how he ended up with his current job. I, on the other hand, have never held a non-instructor flying job, and have always wanted to instruct until I was able to move on to freight or the regionals. I have never really been that drawn by what I've seen of corporate flying.

So the issue is this: he made it clear a while ago that he really would like to help me out by using me as an SIC in the jet when they need an extra pilot. (There are two pilots on salary in the department, so if both planes are flying in a single day they need a third pilot. They used to have a third pilot on staff, but he was recently fired.) I would of course love to fly the jet, and I said I would need to get paid if I was acting as a required crewmember in a corporate flight department. In consideration of the fact that I am neither type-rated nor do I have much multi or turbine time, I asked for an amount that is half of what he would charge as a type-rated pilot for a daily contract rate.

I have yet to get called for a single flight. Basically, he was (and is) expecting me to do it for the experience. There are a few other people on the field who will do it for free, so my friend would rather use them than "stick his bosses with a bill."

The issue's come up between us a few times when we've been hanging out, and I get the impression that if I didn't request any compensation, I would be on the top of their list. I just simply don't feel comfortable flying (as a required crewmember) for free. But there are plenty of people who are willing to do just that. I end up with my principle but no flying!

So my question is this: what would you do? Am I making the right decision? Or is it foolish for me to pass up free multi-engine turbine SIC time?
 

Number1atNumber2

Tries to keep it fun.
I'm a bit confused about the whole "minimally qualified SIC" thing. Either you can be trained to be authorized to fly some Citations single pilot, or you have to have a fully qualified SIC. I don't think there is such a thing as "minimally qualifed SIC." You're either single pilot, or you are not. So to log SIC time you'd have to be fully trained as one and have a valid checkride with paperwork to prove it, otherwise I don't see how he can legally do this for you. I could be wrong here, but what you've described is something I've never heard of. It's cool that he offered, but if you guys get caught there will be hell to pay.
 

jrh

Well-Known Member
I don't understand if the SIC is required or not, but I'll assume one is required for the sake of argument.

Aside from the idea of undercutting somebody else which is pretty bad (you said the third crewmember was recently fired) I think the more important issue is, how much are you worth?

How much you charge is directly proportional to how much you believe you are worth. By flying for free, you're basically announcing to the world that you don't think you, your skills, and your time, are worth *anything*.

Would you flight instruct for free? It's good experience, after all. No, you wouldn't do that, would you? Why not? Because you're *worth* something. You have bills to pay like everybody else, so you use your skills as an instructor to earn a living.

I used to fly for some really crappy wages. Finally I got so pissed off about it that I said screw it, I'd rather leave aviation than accept less than what I believe I'm worth. Then all of a sudden I started getting paid significantly better and was much more satisfied with my life. I felt like I was getting a fair deal.

Only you can decide for yourself what you're willing to accept. For me, I don't care if you want me to fly a Cessna 150 or a Citation, you better be paying me! After all, if you want me there, I must be worth something, right?


Oh, and one final note--if the crewmember isn't required, then everything I just said goes out the window. Sorry to say, but you really are worthless then. Can't log it, they can go without you, etc., so it's sort of silly to demand pay for those trips. It might be worth taking the trip for the experience and networking aspects of it, but pay shouldn't be the issue.
 

BajtheJino

I'm looking at you.
Sorry to say if you're not required you're not worth it.
On the other hand, I do know of a company that operates a KA200 single pilot but sometimes the people they haul require 2 pilots per their company's requirements. So in that case a warm body is stuck in the right seat and told not to touch anything or say anything-strictly a coffee/newspapers kind of guy.
1. Not required?
2. Not paid?
3. No way!
 

dc3flyer

Well-Known Member
It sounds like your friend works for a 91 company????? If so, you can fly SIC with just a multi commercial with no SIC training, this opposed to a 135 op where you have to have an SIC checkride (not an SIC type unless you are going international).

If you would like to get in the right seat to see what it is all about, maybe offer to do a trip for free. Then if you think everything is legit and you would like to get the chance some more, tell the guy again what you would like to be paid, I would say at least the amount of money you will be loosing for the day by not being able to work your regular job as a CFI. If he doesn't like that, then forget it!
 

falconvalley

Absentee Dad of the OOTSK, Runner, Cat Frustrator
It's completely up to you. If I'm needed for legalities and/or insurance, then I want to be paid. When I had 550 hours, I was right seat in a KA200 for insurance. I could NOT use the experience for any training or experience requirements, but I have it written down somewhere. I got paid really good money to do that. In my opinion an insurance right seater should get 250-500 dollars a day in a Citation, depending on their qualifications.
 

Keebler

New Member
Unless the Citation is equipped for SP and the PIC has a SP type he is required by the rgulation to have a quallified SIC. The FARs define quallified, but basically you need to have training on the systems, normal procedures, and the abnormals. It doesn't matter if you are 91 or 135, turbojets require two guys up front unless the plane and pilot are both rated for single pilot ops. Never work for free.
 

Itchy

Well-Known Member
Abuse. It sounds like you still have a smidge of pride left. Keep it.

From your opening thread, I have to think it is a 91 operation, you still need minimal training and three crash and dash's. Don't go flying a trip without that. And some compensation. It sounds like the dude is pimping you.
 

flyinguitar

Well-Known Member
Thank you all for your comments! Some clarifications:

Yes, they operate under part 91. The regulations that I understand govern what I would have to do to be qualified as SIC are at the end of this reply.

They operate their citation as a two-pilot airplane. They do not have authorization for single-pilot operations. When it comes to flights in the conquest (a single-pilot airplane), I have not asked for any compensation since I would not be a required crewmember.

By "minimally qualified SIC" I am referring to someone with the legal requirements but no significant experience as an SIC in a jet. Similar to, say, a brand new CFI versus one who's been instructing for years. It might make sense for the more experienced one to command more compensation. But they are both the same in the eyes of the law.

The third pilot was fired for performance reasons, and at this point is completely out of the picture.

Sec. 61.55 - Second-in-command qualifications.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (d) of this section, no person may serve as a second in command of an aircraft type certificated for more than one required pilot flight crewmember or in operations requiring a second in command unless that person holds:

(1) At least a current private pilot certificate with the appropriate category and class rating; and

(2) An instrument rating that applies to the aircraft being flown if the flight is under IFR.

(b) Except as provided in paragraph (d) of this section, no person may serve as a second in command of an aircraft type certificated for more than one required pilot flight crewmember or in operations requiring a second in command unless that person has within the previous 12 calendar months:

(1) Become familiar with the following information for the specific type aircraft for which second-in-command privileges are requested --

(i) Operational procedures applicable to the powerplant, equipment, and systems.

(ii) Performance specifications and limitations.

(iii) Normal, abnormal, and emergency operating procedures.

(iv) Flight manual.

(v) Placards and markings.

(2) Except as provided in paragraph (e) of this section, performed and logged pilot time in the type of aircraft or in a flight simulator that represents the type of aircraft for which second-in-command privileges are requested, which includes --

(i) Three takeoffs and three landings to a full stop as the sole manipulator of the flight controls;

(ii) Engine-out procedures and maneuvering with an engine out while executing the duties of pilot in command; and

(iii) Crew resource management training.
 

CoffeeIcePapers

Well-Hung Member
If they can do a "self training" sort of deal, and you can get your SIC ticket for free, I would say do it. Milk the training from them, log it, get the SIC from the FSDO, and then don't do it anymore unless you are paid.
 

Number1atNumber2

Tries to keep it fun.
Thank you all for your comments! Some clarifications:

Yes, they operate under part 91. The regulations that I understand govern what I would have to do to be qualified as SIC are at the end of this reply.

They operate their citation as a two-pilot airplane. They do not have authorization for single-pilot operations. When it comes to flights in the conquest (a single-pilot airplane), I have not asked for any compensation since I would not be a required crewmember.

By "minimally qualified SIC" I am referring to someone with the legal requirements but no significant experience as an SIC in a jet. Similar to, say, a brand new CFI versus one who's been instructing for years. It might make sense for the more experienced one to command more compensation. But they are both the same in the eyes of the law.

Ok now I follow ;) It sounds like a good opportunity for you. However, you definatly need to be compensated for you work. DO NOT do it for free. Even though you may not bring as much to the table as an SIC that has a fair amount of experience, you are still providing him with your services. Friend or not, he needs to compensate you for your efforts, just getting flight time in a jet isn't good enough. As they say: it's business, not personal.


"If you're good at something, never do it for free" - The Joker (Dark Knight version)
 

WAFlyBoy

Well-Known Member
I'll echo the above: SIC in the Citation sounds like a good opportunity, and I think you should consider it. But don't do it for free; as a required crew member you should be getting paid.

Is this for Honey B corp? I know they operate a Citation and a Conquest on the west coast....
 

ppragman

FLIPY FLAPS!
I'll echo the above: SIC in the Citation sounds like a good opportunity, and I think you should consider it. But don't do it for free; as a required crew member you should be getting paid.

Is this for Honey B corp? I know they operate a Citation and a Conquest on the west coast....
True, however, don't expect to get paid well. Someone earlier said that a CJ SIC was worth 250-500/day, ehh, nope, not in your shoes. At 1000TT or so, no turbine experience, and no CJ experience, you're almost an insurance burden to them. You'd be amazed at how expensive insurance actually is. That being said, 100-150/day would be a good salary, or $35/hr wouldn't be bad for an SIC slot either. Just don't burn any bridges by trying to highball your way into the right seat of a CJ, the time is more important for you, however, you do need to get paid.
 

CK

Well-Known Member
True, however, don't expect to get paid well. Someone earlier said that a CJ SIC was worth 250-500/day, ehh, nope, not in your shoes. At 1000TT or so, no turbine experience, and no CJ experience, you're almost an insurance burden to them. You'd be amazed at how expensive insurance actually is. That being said, 100-150/day would be a good salary, or $35/hr wouldn't be bad for an SIC slot either. Just don't burn any bridges by trying to highball your way into the right seat of a CJ, the time is more important for you, however, you do need to get paid.

Low balling it will burn more bridges. Tell them you are worth more than $100 a day and you'll burn one bridge. Set the going rate for a Citation co-pilot at $100 a day and you'll piss off a lot of corporate pilots. If the going rate for a Citation co-pilot is $300 a day (which it is here) then you should charge atleast $300 a day whether you have 500 hours or 10,000 hours. This isn't the regional airlines people who can afford a jet can afford to pay well. SIC time in a Citation is not that important.

Alex.
 

jwp_145

GhostRider in the Sky
A good friend of mine was an insurance-required SIC and he was paid $250 per day. So here is my question: Since they are required to use a second pilot, who are they using instead of you? They must obviously be using someone. Find out from your friend what they are paying that person, and tell the company that you will do it for that amount. Surely there will be a time when that person will not be available, and they will ask you to fill in.

But don't do the work for free, as tempting as it is, nor should you undercut the person they have been using. Karma is a pain. Now if in the future your friend becomes single-pilot typed, then it would be acceptable to go for free.

Just my .02
 

CoffeeIcePapers

Well-Hung Member
How is this different from a SIC position at Simuflite? You work for free in exchange for a SIC qualification. This is better, since it is in the jet.
 

KLB

Well-Known Member
How is this different from a SIC position at Simuflite? You work for free in exchange for a SIC qualification. This is better, since it is in the jet.
My opinion is that Simuflite is flying in a sim while this is flying for hire. You would need a commercial certificate to be in this operation and should be payed accordingly.
 

surreal1221

Well-Known Member
Would you be flying for free? Meaning no compensation (money).

Further, are your qualified?

Third, if you would be flying for free, would you be flying and essentially doing a job that the company or flight department would otherwise need to hire a person for?

Maybe I missed the answers to the questions, but if you're going to be flying and end up doing the work for free when otherwise the flight department / company would need to actually hire a pilot then it's a no go in my opinion.

Never do someone else's job for free. People need to make a living, especially right now.
 

CK

Well-Known Member
How is this different from a SIC position at Simuflite? You work for free in exchange for a SIC qualification. This is better, since it is in the jet.
No one is trying to make a career out of flying in the right seat of a simulator, you are not undercutting anyone. There are a lot of people who make their living as a contract pilot, right now I am one of them. One of the guys I fly for will only use me if the pilots that will fly for free can't do it. The sim guys also get a $20,000 type rating after a few months.

Alex.
 
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