Flight instructing in a light sport ercoupe

Finally, a place for sport pilot instructors and/or wannabees to talk about instructing.

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mhaleem
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Flight instructing in a light sport ercoupe

Postby mhaleem » Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:31 am

Can someone tell me from a weight and balance and space standpoint (for instructor and student) if the ercoupe with rudder pedals would be a good choice as a light sport trainer
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drseti
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Postby drseti » Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:25 am

The Ercoupe 415C is a great little Sport Pilot trainer, though it's important to emphasize that it is not, and never will be, truly an LSA -- it's a certified airplane that Sport Pilots can fly. This is an important distinction primarily from a maintenance perspective (the annual inspection, for example, will have to be done by an IA).

I have a primary student finishing up in one right now (in fact, we're flying today). Here are the weight specs of the one I use:

Max gross = 1260# (there's an STC available for some models to take the max gross up to the 1320 pound LSA limit, but that requires modifying the tail in some cases. There's also a 1400# STC -- if that's ever been complied with, the plane can never be Sport Pilot eligible. :( )
Empty wt = 820# (this one is heavy, because it has metallized wings)
Useful load = 440#
Max fuel = 138#
Payload = 302#

I usually fly it with 5 gals in each of the mains, and 5 in the header tank. This leaves 350# for student and instructor, and still allows enough fuel for a 2-hour lesson with VFR reserves. Cockpit is tight (about like a Cessna 150), but adequate. Heavy students (or heavy instructors) probably won't work too well.

Check with the Ercoupe Owner's Club online for more information about this wonderful little plane. If you get to the point of seriously considering one, you should join the club, and get checked out by one of their authorized instructors. (Shameless plug -- I am one of those!)
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

mhaleem
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Light Sport Ercoupe

Postby mhaleem » Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:37 am

Doc is one of the main selling points of having a true LSA is the ability to get a LSRM rating and work on one's own a/c. Also would the requirement to have an A&P/IA do the work on an ercoupe a major disadvantage in regards to offering flight instruction in it. Thanks
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drseti
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Postby drseti » Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:51 am

For me personally, since I hold an LSRM with airplane, weight shift, and glider ratings, it's a nuisance (but not a major problem) and a bit of an expense to have to have an A&P maintain, and an IA inspect, the Ercoupe. Given the choice, I would probably not acquire another certified airplane for my flight school.

That said, if you already hold (or plan to get) an A&P rating, this becomes a non-issue. Beyond that, the availability on your airport of a suitably licensed mechanic will influence your decision. Of all the Sport Pilot eligible certified aircraft out there, the Ercoupe is, IMHO, best suited for Sport Pilot flight school use. (I know Tom 3Dreaming will disagree with me, as he uses a T-craft. :) )
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

jnmeade
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Re: Flight instructing in a light sport ercoupe

Postby jnmeade » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:02 am

mhaleem wrote:Can someone tell me from a weight and balance and space standpoint (for instructor and student) if the ercoupe with rudder pedals would be a good choice as a light sport trainer


Just out of curiosity, are you asking from the viewpoint of buying one and offering instruction in it or from the perspective of a student considering getting your SP in one?

Off the top of my head, I'm not sure of any other tricycle gear standard certificated airplanes that would be LSA compliant. Maybe someone could refresh my memory.

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drseti
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Re: Flight instructing in a light sport ercoupe

Postby drseti » Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:07 am

jnmeade wrote:Off the top of my head, I'm not sure of any other tricycle gear standard certificated airplanes that would be LSA compliant.


I believe that is correct. All the others of which I'm aware are conventional landing gear.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

mhaleem
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Joined: Thu Dec 03, 2009 5:38 pm

Light Sport Ercoupe

Postby mhaleem » Sat Aug 18, 2012 10:52 am

JNMeade I would be considering buying one in order to offer flight instruction for anyone considering the sport/private pilot rating. Of course I would have to contract out a private CFI to do the private training.
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Re: Light Sport Ercoupe

Postby drseti » Sat Aug 18, 2012 10:56 am

mhaleem wrote:Of course I would have to contract out a private CFI to do the private training.


Maybe at first. But, you seem like a bright lad. I'd assume you'll go on for your commercial, instrument, and CFI ratings in due course.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying


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