How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Sport aviation is growing rapidly. But the new sport pilot / light-sport aircraft rules are still a mystery to many flight schools and instructors. To locate a flight school offering sport pilot training and/or light-sport aircraft rentals, click on the "Flight School And Rental Finder" tab above. This is a great place to share ideas on learning to fly, flight schools, costs and anything else related to training.

Moderator: drseti

FlyAgain
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2018 6:00 pm

How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby FlyAgain » Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:04 pm

Hi everyone, first post here. I got my PPL in college and haven’t logged flight time since1989. Considering getting back into it but not sure I want to go through the bureaucracy of the FAA’s medical certificate given past complex health history, I’m safe to fly but as I understand it if you apply for a medical and get denied you are barred forever for asking, Sport or otherwise. Can’t do Basic Med since my last FAA physical was before 2006. Although I haven’t flown in a long time I’ve been around aviation considerably (USAF).

Some questions
1. As I understand it I don’t need to get a Sport Pilot Certificate as my PPL trumps that and without a medical all I need is a drivers license and operate only LSA within the LSA restrictions. Is this correct? In effect I’m downgrading.
2. I guess the term “biennial flight review” doesn’t technically apply as that is for the type rating and aircraft for which you are certified, i.e., Airplane -Single Engine Land in my case which as an LSA guy I wouldn’t be doing. So, if I have it right the correct term is really an “endorsement” for LSA? I wouldn’t be subject to an FAA written, oral exam or check ride for Sport Pilot. Am I on track here?
3. From a practicality standpoint I would obviously study to get back up to speed using an equivalent online ground school or the old fashioned way…a formal class. Back in the day most “ground schools” existed to “teach the test” vs what you really need to know. Would need to get a lot flight training again and enough hours of dual instruction in LSA to cover all bases and then get the endorsement from an instructor. In essence I would be getting the Sport training as though I was starting from scratch without the formal FAA exams. Probably a considerable endeavor. I see there are flight training centers for Sling in Carson City, NV and Sport Cruiser in Bountiful UT or Addison TX. Those appear to be more geared for certificates vs what I’m trying to do.

I’ve got some other non-training questions on LSA but will post those in the right forum. I stopped flying as I didn’t have the funds back then to to fly often enough and didn’t want to be a once-a-month sightseer only when there is no crosswind and no clouds. Military career and family obligations took over. I’m retired now and have options. Goal would be to buy and own an LSA.

Excuse the length.

3Dreaming
Posts: 2431
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:13 pm
Location: noble, IL USA

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby 3Dreaming » Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:21 pm

For you, a LSA is still airplane single engine land. If you haven't done so update your current address with the FAA and get a plastic pilot certificate. It will cost you a couple dollars, but it must to be done before you fly as PIC.

The process will be the same as if you were getting current at the private pilot level, except that with a drivers license in lieu of a medical restricts you to sport pilot privileges flying a LSA. A flight review with ground training getting up to date on current regulations, airspace, ect. plus flight training getting you flying at a safe level to operate as PIC. Don't be surprised if it takes longer that you think seeing that you are also transitioning to a LSA.

User avatar
smutny
Posts: 75
Joined: Fri Dec 30, 2016 2:26 pm

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby smutny » Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:15 pm

First off, congrats on coming back to the cockpit! I understand the apprehension, I took a few years off myself and there were a number of changes I had to get up to speed on.

So, a license is a license, as mentioned, the first thing you need to do is get your plastic FAA certificate that states "English Proficient".
https://www.faa.gov/licenses_certificat ... placement/

Then I'd suggest getting a hold of a current training course on airspace. AOPA has an online Rusty Pilots course that covers all the pertinent stuff.
https://www.aopa.org/training-and-safet ... ots-online

Then, go plan on flying for 5-10 hours of dual. And since it is dual, you won't have to be in an LSA, you just can't solo in anything but a LSA. Have fun with it, maybe do the flying in a Cub and get your tailwheel endorsement as well.

Lastly, don't think of it as a "downgrade" from flying with a PPL. I recently flew from Seattle to Oshkosh and back, except for a peek at flying between cloud layers (which I didn't like what I saw and turned back) the entire trip complied with SP limitations.
John Smutny
LSRM - A/WS
Normandy AIrcraft @ S36

TimTaylor
Posts: 1087
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:17 pm

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby TimTaylor » Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:20 pm

You need a checkout in an LSA and a flight review. That is all. My checkout was 2 1/2 hours and I hadn't flown in 7 years. However, I did have a bunch of hours in a bunch of different aircraft, so it was pretty simple. And yes, you will be limited to Sport Pilot privileges and limitations, but that is not a big deal.
Commercial Pilot Airplane Single & Multiengine Land; Instrument Airplane; Sport Endorsement Airplane Single Engine Sea; Flight Instructor Airplane Single And Multiengine; Ground Instructor Advanced Instrument

Sling 2 Pilot
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2018 4:53 pm

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby Sling 2 Pilot » Sun Nov 18, 2018 5:03 pm

I returned after a 7 year hiatus. The only difference is, I fly under Basic Med, as I met the criteria. I then took a AOPA Rusty Pilot course, got a BFR and bought an LSA.

All I can say is, go for it! It’s like riding a bike. Your only restrictions flying as a Sport Pilot will be your limit to under 10k feet and flying LSA’s. Good Luck.

TimTaylor
Posts: 1087
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:17 pm

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby TimTaylor » Sun Nov 18, 2018 5:12 pm

Sling 2 Pilot wrote:I returned after a 7 year hiatus. The only difference is, I fly under Basic Med, as I met the criteria. I then took a AOPA Rusty Pilot course, got a BFR and bought an LSA.

All I can say is, go for it! It’s like riding a bike. Your only restrictions flying as a Sport Pilot will be your limit to under 10k feet and flying LSA’s. Good Luck.


And VFR, 3 miles visibility, visual contact with the ground, and daytime only.
Commercial Pilot Airplane Single & Multiengine Land; Instrument Airplane; Sport Endorsement Airplane Single Engine Sea; Flight Instructor Airplane Single And Multiengine; Ground Instructor Advanced Instrument

User avatar
MrMorden
Posts: 1975
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:28 am
Location: Athens, GA

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby MrMorden » Mon Nov 19, 2018 1:41 pm

Sling 2 Pilot wrote:our only restrictions flying as a Sport Pilot will be your limit to under 10k feet and flying LSA’s. Good Luck.


And Day VFR only.
Andy Walker
Athens, GA
Sport Pilot ASEL, LSRI
2007 Flight Design CTSW E-LSA

FlyAgain
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2018 6:00 pm

Re: How to Get Back in the Game...PPL to LSA?

Postby FlyAgain » Wed Nov 21, 2018 2:13 pm

Thanks everyone for the great replies. I ordered an updated certificate online from the FAA as indeed mine is the old paper version.


Return to “Training”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests