I feel like such an idiot

djh1007

Flying Squirrel Trainee
So yesterday I had my initial CFI ride with the Feds, and I ended up with a letter of discontinuance (my choice).

I breezed through the oral, ate lunch, taught a preflight lesson, and that was it. I couldn't get the Arrow started.

It was ~85F and the airplane had returned from a flight 30 minutes ago. I tried the hot start procedure, and that was no go. Then I tried to flood the crap out of it to reduce any vapors, no go. I couldn't even get the prop to catch once.

I ended up asking for a letter of discontinuance on the basis of "mechanical issues", but I felt like an idiot.

It may have been a blessing in disguise, as my brain was so fried that I went home and took a 2 hour nap.

Anyway, just wanted to vent. Sucks to feel like a moron, though.
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
You did the right thing, rest up, knock out the flight (that's the easy part) and it'll all be history.

p.s. did you remember to turn on the ignition? :D
 

purpel

Well-Known Member
Sounds like a good choice to me...

Good job for noticing the signs and taking a discontinuance

Sounds like Fed agreed with you, because they cannot just hand out a LOD
 

ozziecat35

4 out of 5 great lakes prefer Michigan.
I'd say it was a great move. How many people would try and force the issue just to get the ride over with? You came across a speedbump, saw it was going to cause an issue, and used your prerogative to punt the situation for when you were fresh and knew the airplane was ready to go...nothing idiotic sounding about it. Good luck on the flight portion!
 

djh1007

Flying Squirrel Trainee
I guess I feel like I may be subjecting myself to extra scrutiny on the ride because I couldn't even start the plane. Although the Fed was professional and even sympathetic, I feel like it is human nature for him to return more skeptical of my abilities.

We both agreed that vaporlock was a likely cause.
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
I guess I feel like I may be subjecting myself to extra scrutiny on the ride because I couldn't even start the plane. Although the Fed was professional and even sympathetic, I feel like it is human nature for him to return more skeptical of my abilities.
Not at all. Feds investigate accidents all the time because people tried to "push on". Showing that you're willing to say "well we're not flying today" probably earned you a ton of respect in his/her eyes.

Go finish the flight, it'll be fine.
 

Bumblebee

Commodore
sounds like a proper command decision to me...think about the accident reports you've read...it's several things that all come together in a chain...you broke the chain. I think the DE would be more impressed than if you displayed "get there itis" good work.
So yesterday I had my initial CFI ride with the Feds, and I ended up with a letter of discontinuance (my choice).

I breezed through the oral, ate lunch, taught a preflight lesson, and that was it. I couldn't get the Arrow started.

It was ~85F and the airplane had returned from a flight 30 minutes ago. I tried the hot start procedure, and that was no go. Then I tried to flood the crap out of it to reduce any vapors, no go. I couldn't even get the prop to catch once.

I ended up asking for a letter of discontinuance on the basis of "mechanical issues", but I felt like an idiot.

It may have been a blessing in disguise, as my brain was so fried that I went home and took a 2 hour nap.

Anyway, just wanted to vent. Sucks to feel like a moron, though.
 

mogley68

Well-Known Member
Sounds like you did the right thing. I think most examiners value judgment and decision making skills over performing every single maneuver perfectly. They know you are nervous and more than likely fried by that point in the day. It shows them you're going to be safe even if your steep turns may not be as smooth as you would have liked. No saying that everything shouldn't be within pts standards though.
 

drunkenbeagle

Gang Member
I guess I feel like I may be subjecting myself to extra scrutiny on the ride because I couldn't even start the plane. Although the Fed was professional and even sympathetic, I feel like it is human nature for him to return more skeptical of my abilities.
Better than burning out the starter, or starting a fire... You did the right thing, I've watched 20,000 hour pilots unable to start a plane that I can start in 10 seconds because I know "the touch" on that particular engine. Ask MX if there is some quirk about that one (there probably is).
 

X-Forces

Big Black Guy
Not even really sure what you are upset about.

You couldn't complete a flight because the aircraft wouldn't start, why should this make you feel like a moron?
Maybe it was a mechanical issue, maybe the engine was vapor locked, either way I'm sure you know how to start a plane and I'm sure it didn't have anything to do with you.

Now, had you forced it, flooded it out, had a nice carburetor backfire which in turn set the aircraft on fire thus failing the checkride due to improper starting procedures, then you should feel like an idiot.

Go easy on yourself.
 

Jpax

Well-Known Member
I'd say that'd a great call. If I was the Fed, I'd be satisfied. I'd rather be on the ground wondering why it didn't start, than at 400 feet with no usable runway left!
 

rframe

pǝʇɹǝʌuı
Now, had you forced it, flooded it out, had a nice carburetor backfire which in turn set the aircraft on fire thus failing the checkride due to improper starting procedures, then you should feel like an idiot.
Now THAT would be a great youtube GoPro video!
 
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