Instrument Rating Questions

Scandinavian13

New Member
I'll cut to the chase:

1 - Can I log sim instrument time without having an instructor in the aircraft (assuming I have a competent pilot in the right seat as a safety pilot while I'm under the hood)?

2 - What are the requirements for logging an instrument approach? Is there a difference between a simulated instrument approach and an actual instrument approach in terms of logging?

3 - How much dual should I expect for the rating?


...anything else I should know about the hour requirements?
 

bdhill1979

Gone West
1 - Can I log sim instrument time without having an instructor in the aircraft (assuming I have a competent pilot in the right seat as a safety pilot while I'm under the hood)?
Safety Pilot is all you need.

2 - What are the requirements for logging an instrument approach? Is there a difference between a simulated instrument approach and an actual instrument approach in terms of logging?
Safety Pilot is all you need, though I highly discourage practicing approaches without an instructor. You log simulated as simulated and log actual as actual. YOU MAY NOT LOG ACTUAL WITHOUT AN INSTRUCTOR.


3 - How much dual should I expect for the rating?
Depends on you. I have signed off guys at 16 hours dual received, and some at 40. It helps a lot to have a student that studies and flies flight sim a lot.
 

GUNIT

Well-Known Member
1 & 2 were already answered and just to give my perspective on 3: if you know your stuff you'll get signed off in the minimum amount of time. I got signed off in 15, but I came into training having already passed the written and done quite an amount of reading/study on the topics. Instrument checkride went off without a hitch.

Enjoy instrument training. It's the best!!
 

TGatch

Well-Known Member
3 - How much dual should I expect for the rating?
I had about 40 hours Dual, but that's because I never used a safety pilot to get actual/simulated, I just used my instructor, that's why it's so high. Don't forget the 50 hours of x-country and 40 actual/simulated that's pretty much it. Another that that would help is to combine your dual and x-country if you still need it, kill two birds with one stone.
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
You can absolutely log time under the hood with a safety pilot sitting next to you. There is no need to have an instrument instructor present.

You don't need to have an instrument rating to log a simulated approach. You just need a safety pilot. But without the instrument rating, the approach you log is irrelevant. You have no need to be current since it's irrelevant.

You need a minimum of 15 hours of dual. Can you get it done with that? Depends. When I started mine, the instructor had me shoot a couple of approaches and said, okay, your approaches are fine. Now let's go do some other things you'll need to be able to do. And he kept on reminding me that I only needed x hours more to get to that 15 hours.

You also need 50 hours of cross country time. You can use the 250 NM trip you need to do to build up both the hours for instruction and the cross country time.
 

bdhill1979

Gone West
I had about 40 hours Dual, but that's because I never used a safety pilot to get actual/simulated, I just used my instructor, that's why it's so high. Don't forget the 50 hours of x-country and 40 actual/simulated that's pretty much it. Another that that would help is to combine your dual and x-country if you still need it, kill two birds with one stone.
I am finding that the more IFR XC dual I give the better off the student is in the long run.

When I did my IR I had 17 hours dual received and only the bare minimum 250 mile IFR cross country.

I knew pretty much nothing.

Now, as an instructor I will spend as much time as possible on IFR cross countries with a student. I even spell it out for them at the beginning that while it is not required to do that much XC with me, it will be to their benefit. I explain that it will cost them more to have me in the plane and even break that cost down. I give them the choice and so far everybody has chosen the extra time with me.
 

TGatch

Well-Known Member
Yeah I wish I had done that as well. I ended up flying 50 hours by myself, and then 40 hours with an instructor, I could have saved a lot of money but I guess any hours are good. In my opinion all Instrument training should be x-countries, because after all, that's what it usually is going to be. I've also noticed the farther you fly on your x-country the better chance you will have of getting actual, which is a big plus!
 

bdhill1979

Gone West
Yeah I wish I had done that as well. I ended up flying 50 hours by myself, and then 40 hours with an instructor, I could have saved a lot of money but I guess any hours are good. In my opinion all Instrument training should be x-countries, because after all, that's what it usually is going to be. I've also noticed the farther you fly on your x-country the better chance you will have of getting actual, which is a big plus!
:yeahthat:

The only time I have ever been IFR local is just to shoot some actual approaches.
 

Scandinavian13

New Member
Thanks for the quick posts, guys. I've been wondering about that all day.

Considering I got my private done in 41 hours (not including the time for the checkride), I could plan on closer to 15 dual without being too unrealistic?

What would you recommend in terms of a schedule?
I've already buried myself in the Jepp IFR/Comm grey book and I've been reading other books about IFR workings. I'm assuming most will say I should build time for a while and then go in for the dual. Is that reasonable/recommended?

As it stands right now, I have 60.2 hours SEL, which includes 7.0 night, 2.5 simulated, 1 simulator, 20.6 XC, 36.1 Dual and 25.1 PIC.

I was thinking I'd just log a bunch of solo XC and bring a friend along with me to be my safety pilot on a few of flights to get some hood time (I'm guessing the dual will have some hood time, too). Then, at about 100 hours, go in and get the dual. If I finish up in 15 hours of dual, I can use the next 10 hours to make up whatever I'm lacking in.

What would you all recommend?
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
YOU MAY NOT LOG ACTUAL WITHOUT AN INSTRUCTOR.
Says who?

The reg I'm familiar with says

==============================
61.51(g) Logging instrument flight time.
(1) A person may log instrument time only for that flight time when the person operates the aircraft solely by reference to instruments under actual or simulated instrument flight conditions.
==============================
not
==============================
61.51(g) Logging instrument flight time.
(1) A person may log instrument time only for that flight time when the person operates the aircraft solely by reference to instruments under actual or simulated instrument flight conditions, but actual must be with an authorized instructor.
==============================
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
I was thinking I'd just log a bunch of solo XC and bring a friend along with me to be my safety pilot on a few of flights to get some hood time (I'm guessing the dual will have some hood time, too). Then, at about 100 hours, go in and get the dual. If I finish up in 15 hours of dual, I can use the next 10 hours to make up whatever I'm lacking in.
IFR training has two components. One is taking that emergency instrument reference procedure you learned as a private pilot and making a more sustainable scan out of it. The other, which is in many ways the larger of the two, is learning the =procedures= of IFR flight. The combination is the kicker - sustainable scan while performing the procedures. Without training, there are way too many bad habits you can learn.

I always think of using a safety pilot during instrument training as the instrument student's equivalent of solo flight. The idea is to practice what you learned.

With that in mind, I recommend that your safety pilot flights be coordinated to go along with your training, not before it just to build time and bad habits. So, if you are at the stage of instrument training where you are learning basic attitude flight, go up with a safety pilot and practice some of that. If you are working on approaches, go up with your safety pilot and practice some of the approaches you've learned. Same for cross country, although unless your safety pilot is instrument rated and willing to act as PIC for you on an instrument flight plan, there is a basic and unfortunate limitation on how much you can get out of that.
 

bdhill1979

Gone West
Says who?

The reg I'm familiar with says

==============================
61.51(g) Logging instrument flight time.
(1) A person may log instrument time only for that flight time when the person operates the aircraft solely by reference to instruments under actual or simulated instrument flight conditions.
==============================
not
==============================
61.51(g) Logging instrument flight time.
(1) A person may log instrument time only for that flight time when the person operates the aircraft solely by reference to instruments under actual or simulated instrument flight conditions, but actual must be with an authorized instructor.
==============================
Then by all means explain to me how a non-instrument rated pilot may legitimately, and legally log Actual instrument flight conditions.

If he is flying in the clouds, he is breaking regs.
 

bdhill1979

Gone West
Oops, accidentally deleted that post you replied to instead of editing. But to answer your question, no.
I agree that the reg doesn't say you can't

However I watched an examiner go Ape #### on an applicant that had a bunch of actual that was with his non CFI buddy. He called the SLC FSDO and they backed him up on it; said he can't count it.
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
I agree that the reg doesn't say you can't

However I watched an examiner go Ape #### on an applicant that had a bunch of actual that was with his non CFI buddy. He called the SLC FSDO and they backed him up on it; said he can't count it.
And? FSDOs do not officially interpret regulations and a different FSDO or even a different inspector at the same FSDO might say something different. A police officer who arrests people because of their skin color does not make the skin color illegal.
Then by all means explain to me how a non-instrument rated pilot may legitimately, and legally log Actual instrument flight conditions.
I am an instrument pilot and current (assume I'm not a CFI). My friend is a private pilot, no IR. We go on a trip together in actual and I make the PIC decision that I am comfortable enough to allow him to fly the airplane and get some experience/practice.

While the sole manipulator, he is entitled to log PIC as the sole manipulator of the controls and actual instrument time because he fits into the applicable boxes of 61.51.

PIC box: he "Is the sole manipulator of the controls of an aircraft for which the pilot is rated or has privileges" 61.51(e)(1)(i)

Instrument Box: he "operates the aircraft solely by reference to instruments under actual or simulated instrument flight conditions."

Pretty straightforward and simple.
 

ladder360

Well-Known Member
I have a question.

I was planning on taking my PPL checkride this last week, but due to scheduling conflicts, it's looking like I won't be able do it for another week or two.

I was planning on going to NJC, dragging along my CFI and we'd fly there utilizing the time for instrument training. Of course, this was assuming I passed my checkride.

If we still fly out to NJC and do sim instrument, can I log this and use it toward my instrument cert? Without having passed my PPL yet?
 

PGT

Well-Known Member
I have a question.

I was planning on taking my PPL checkride this last week, but due to scheduling conflicts, it's looking like I won't be able do it for another week or two.

I was planning on going to NJC, dragging along my CFI and we'd fly there utilizing the time for instrument training. Of course, this was assuming I passed my checkride.

If we still fly out to NJC and do sim instrument, can I log this and use it toward my instrument cert? Without having passed my PPL yet?
yes. it says you need 40 hours total simulated or actual in your logbook.
 
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