#001 | How many flight hours are required for a private pilots certificate? | FAR 61.109(a)
Thank you for listening…
Our main goal for this podcast is to make each episode better than the last and in my biased opinion I think we set ourselves up for success with the second episode! Kidding aside, we made some promises for the show notes and I do plan on delivering the FAA’s “Student Pilot Guide”… the elusive “change 1” version published in 2016, not that old 2006 rag that is all over the search engines. Also, all three of our flight time totals when we took our private pilot check ride. That link to the page claiming that you need to exit the runway for your landing to be considered a full stop & Bahamas night flying requirements.
Lee Griffing’s Total Flight Times before his Private Pilot Check Ride
- First Officially logged flight lesson was on Monday, February 8, 1999***
- Check Ride was passed on Wednesday, October 26, 2005
- 6 years, 8 months & 19 days spent on Private Pilots Certificate**
- 64.5 Hours – Total Time – 161%*
- 45.1 Hours – Flight Training (Dual Received) – 226%*
- 19.4 Hours – Solo – 194%*
- 5.8 Hours – X-Country Flight Training (Dual Received) – 193%*
- 3.1 Hours – Night Flight Training (Dual Received) – 103%*
- 4.4 Hours – Simulated Instrument (Dual Received) – 147%*
- 11.2 Hours – Check Ride Prep – 373%*
- 6.5 Hours – Solo X-Country – 130%*
Scott Bores’s Total Flight Times Before His Private Pilot Check Ride
- First officially logged flight lesson was on Friday, October 24, 2003***
- Check Ride was passed on Monday, August 7, 2006
- 2 years, 9 months & 15 days spent on Private Pilots Certificate**
- 112.1 Hours – Total Time – 280%*
- 42.8 Hours – Flight Training (Dual Received) – 214%*
- 64.3 Hours – Solo – 643%*
- 3.8 Hours – X-Country Flight Training (Dual Received) – 127%*
- 4.2 Hours – Night Flight Training (“Official” Dual Received) – 140%*
- 5.6 Hours – Simulated Instrument (Dual Received) – 187%*
- ??? Hours – Check Ride Prep – ???%*
- 7.8 Hours – Solo X-Country – 156%*
Robert Berger’s Total Flight Times Before His Private Pilot Check Ride
- First officially logged flight lesson was on Sunday, October 24, 2004***
- Check Ride was passed on Friday, August 18, 2006
- 1 year, 9 months & 26 days spent on Private Pilot Certificate
- 89.5 Hours – Total Time – 224%*
- 38.3 Hours – Flight Training (Dual Received) – 192%*
- 50.7 Hours – Solo – 507%*
- 9.3 Hours – X-Country Flight Training (Dual Received) – 310%*
- 3.9 Hours – Night Flight Training (Dual Received) – 130%*
- 4.4 Hours – Simulated Instrument (Dual Received) – 147%*
- 5.4 Hours – Check Ride Prep (Dual Received) – 180%*
- 15 Hours – Solo X-Country – 300%*
*Percentage of the minimum legal time required under FAR part 61
**Per FAR 61.103(a), you must be 17 years old to take your private pilot check ride. Scott started officially learning to fly in his early teens and Lee started officially learning to fly before he was a teenager.
***I use the term “officially logged” because all three of us have many hours of unofficial flight training when we were kids.
Huge thanks to all of those old timers in northern Ohio who took us up when we were little kids… you guys are absolute flight legends!
Definition Full Stop Landings
Scott Bores brought up a riveting Full Stop Landing definition that he found on the internet claiming that one must taxi clear of the runway for it to be considered a “full stop”.
I have taken a screen shot below of exactly what Scott saw in case it is changed in the future.
My formal stance is a full stop landing is a landing when the aircraft comes to rest on the surface of the earth and has zero movement.Lee Griffing (post recording)
Unlike Lee I don’t really care about any rules or regulations, whatever you wanna call a full stop is good with me.Scott Bores (post recording)
I have scoured the FAR’s and found nothing indicating that the aircraft must exit the runway for it to count as a full stop landing.Robert Berger (post recording)
VFR Night Flying is PROHIBITED in the Bahamas.
-As per usual Robert Berger was correct!
FAR61.109(a) as of the recording
For an airplane single-engine rating. Except as provided in paragraph (k) of this section, a person who applies for a private pilot certificate with an airplane category and single-engine class rating must log at least 40 hours of flight time that includes at least 20 hours of flight training from an authorized instructor and 10 hours of solo flight training in the areas of operations listed in 61.107(b)(1) of this part, and the training must include at least-
(1) 3 hours of cross-country flight training in a single-engine airplane;
(2) Except as provided in 61.110 of this part, 3 hours of night flight training in a single-engine airplane that includes-
(i) One cross-country flight of over 100 nautical miles total distance; and
(ii) 10 takeoffs and 10 landings to a full stop (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport.
(3) 3 hours of flight training in a single-engine airplane on the control and maneuvering of an airplane solely by reference to instruments, including straight and level flight, constant airspeed climbs and descents, turns to a heading, recovery from unusual flight attitudes, radio communications, and the use of navigation systems/facilities and radar services appropriate to instrument flight;
(4) 3 hours of flight training with an authorized instructor in a single-engine airplane in preparation for the practical test, which must have been performed within the preceding 2 calendar months from the month of the test; and
(5) 10 hours of solo flight time in a single-engine airplane, consisting of at least-
(i) 5 hours of solo cross-country time;
(ii) One solo cross country flight of 150 nautical miles total distance, with full-stop landings at three points, and one segment of the flight consisting of a straight-line distance of more than 50 nautical miles between the takeoff and landing locations; and
(iii) Three takeoffs and three landings to a full stop (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport with an operating control tower.FAR 61.109(a)