Markus Stamm can be added to our growing rank of new private pilots. Markus and his wife Laura came to us seeking ground and flight instruction with the goal of becoming helicopter pilots. They started their instruction with our own Laura and were soon on their way. Markus quickly progressed, finishing his written test and breezing through his solo time. With Laura off to a new job Chris and Markus polished up his maneuvers in preparation for the check ride. After a thorough oral and flight exam he became the proud carrier of a newly minted private certificate. Since then he has already completed high altitude training in Arizona, begun training for his instrument and transitioned to some left seat flying. He is truly a hard working and driven learner. Congratulations from the team at NAFA.
Chris Andrade recently completed his instrument instructor check ride. Chris has been working hard with us over the last few years in his quest to become a professional helicopter pilot. This is his fifth and final checkride so now he can breathe! He has spent the last few months diving back into instrument flying and teaching his instructor everything there is to know about VOR’s, NDB’s and the GPS. After a few more SFAR sign offs he will be on to the fun part, teaching others how to fly. Congratulations Chris from all of us at NAFA.
Congratulations to Jesiel DeOliveira, who recently obtained his private pilot certificate. Jesiel began his training with Laura and completed his written test before ever stepping foot in the helicopter. With that out of the way, Jesiel fast tracked his training. He was a constant fixture at the school flying nearly every day while still juggling his business and family. With Laura off to a new job, Jesiel finished up his training with Steven. With his newly minted certificate he soon took his wife and brother out for a joyride. I think they were pleased to see what he had been spending all his time on over the last few months. Now he is on to instrument and commercial training.
Congratulations to Matt Shawver for recently passing his IFR checkride. We all appreciate his hard work and enthusiasm. Now he can shed the foggles and look outside again! Looking forward to commercial and CFI training.
Congratulations to another one of our hard working students. Mike Williams recently passed his private pilot check-ride. Mike has trained with us over the last year working towards his goal of flying helicopters. Mike is a busy guy and is proof that with our flexible training schedule we can work with you to complete your goals. On top of planning his wedding and traveling for work Mike was still able to complete his training.
- Mike practicing confined area operations to one of our local helipads.
- Mike Williams flashes that post check-ride smile with Instructor’s Mike Holland and Chris McDonald.
Since completing his private license Mike has enjoyed renting our helicopters and sharing his passion for flying with his friends and family. Congratulations Mike, now it’s time to hit the books for your Instrument and Commercial.
We met Roy last year when we were down on a frost prevention trip in New York. He is one of those people who just loves to fly. After logging hundreds of hours of airplane time, he had branched out into helicopters and was always looking to expand his horizons. This summer he decided he wanted to get an instrument rating and an instrument instructor rating in helicopters, and needed a school where he could get this done – he needed accelerated helicopter training.
He was flying Schweizer helicopters down in Connecticut at the time, but his school’s only instrument trainer was an R44 and a little bit too expensive. He called around and was told he would need up to 40 hours of training – even though he already had the instrument and CFII ratings in airplanes! When he found us we told him no problem – as long as he was current we could get both ratings done for him in as little as 15 hours, the FAA minimum for the add-on ratings. So Roy made the drive (or flight) past even more Schweizer helicopters and came to North Andover Flight Academy.
Because he was commuting up to the Boston area from Connecticut, Roy wanted to fly a lot while he was up here and try to get all his work done over two weekends – quite an intensive course! He showed up full of energy and ready to work. He was current and experienced and all set to go on everything — everything that is, except the GPS. Roy is an ‘old school’ kind of guy. He’s totally in his element with a couple of VOR receivers, maybe a DME or an NDB, but the Garmin 430 in our R22 instrument trainer was not something he was looking forward to.
Still, he was definitely not the kind of guy to turn down a challenge, and after lots of practice, encouragement, and ground instruction, we had ourselves a convert. Two weekends and fifteen flight hours later Roy was working his way around the GPS like a pro and ready for two checkrides. He did a great job on localizer, ILS and yes, GPS approaches, and left with two new certificates and a big smile on his face. He had put a lot of energy and work into his new ratings and we were happy we could help him get them as quickly as he did with our intensive training. Congratulations and good job Roy!
North Andover Flight Academy is the ONLY Part 141 helicopter flight training school in the Boston area, and we are experienced in accelerated helicopter training – check out http://www.acceleratedhelitraining.com for more information.
If you’re doing your helicopter instrument training in a Robinson or Schweizer or any other type of helicopter trainer, you know that time is of the essence. You don’t want to travel long distances for your instrument approaches, as you may be paying upwards of $360 per hour for the Schweizer and $250 per hour for the instrument equipped Robinson R22.
When you’re getting your helicopter training in the Boston Mass area, there is one airport that beats all others for instrument approaches. Norwood Airport has a localizer and GPS approach to Runway 35 and that’s it. Runway 28 and 10 with their proximity to the “big blue” – the bluehill do not have approaches – the runways do not even have runway lights! If you’re training down in the Norwood and South Shore area, you need to go a good distance to get to an ILS or VOR approach.
Hanscom airport (Bedford) has the requisite approaches, but is a high traffic area and can be difficult to perform full approaches.
Our home – Lawrence Airport however, has everything the aspiring instrument helicopter pilot would want. With the LWM VOR a short distance away and the ILS to runway 5, you can get your VOR, GPS and ILS approaches in within a few minutes time. You can also do holds over the LWM VOR in many different configurations and shoot an approach in to a full stop landing!
Want to do a full localizer only approach? Head a short distance to Beverly (KBVY) airport and do the localizer.
It was just this advantage that had us up on yet another windy helicopter training day in New England. The winds aloft were 25 kts out of the southwest and there were several small squalls moving our way and we were going to fit in some instrument training while we could.
I was flying with Mike Holland, one of our Part 141 instrument helicopter students. It was time to do holds. Normally at KLWM we will fly approaches to runway 23 and hold over HAGET, then fly the ILS 5 and hold over LWM on the missed approach. Today was strictly hold practice. First using the GPS then straight VOR holds.
HOLD EAST OF THE LWM VOR LEFT TURNS
Mike would head direct to the VOR then visualize the course inbound on the HSI.
Remember, enter the hold, stay on the protected side, and make the least amount of change in direction as possible to pick up the outbound heading and that will be the hold entry that will work. That’s the easy way to do it.
Some tips for the hold include:
The hold is a way for ATC to adjust traffic so that it fits into the separation standards of the FARs.
When the hold is not part of a charted procedure, ATC will try to give you a direct entry.
Even when the hold is published, ATC may give a hold and direction that makes entry to the approach easier.
The instrument PTS does not say the FAA method must be used.
The CFII PTS specifies the FAA method as part of the test.
A hold does not need to be exact, You just have to remain inside the airspace on the holding side of the fix.
This can be done by doing the course reversal 90/270 by doing it as a 80/260 to allow for entry and recovery.
The same procedure can be used to make the procedure turn.
Always make your first 90 degree turn to the holding side and your 260 will be in the holding direction.
Some old sayings for the holds include:
Climbing outbound on a procedures inbound radial is a sure way of meeting someone.
Prepare your departure and arrival strategies ahead of time.
Desire to be good is required to be good.
An accident occurs when you have exhausted your box of options.
Getting away with something stupid is a learning experience, not an invitation to try again.
If you become confused as to where you are in the holding pattern, reference your inbound heading’s location. It should be top for inbound or bottom for outbound.
After exhausting our options for the different holds and entries, we decided to finish off the lesson with a full GPS approach to Runway 23 at KLWM.
Proceeding outbound from the VOR we made the procedure turn inbound directly into the southeast headwind.
Several minutes later we were heading back to the North Andover Flight Academy ramp and hangar.
Well done Mike.