My first proficiency test is coming up – I got the CB-IR rating last year.
How is the PC compared to the check ride?
It seems from reading some of the NDB vs GPS posts that the PC is more relaxed.
I guess this differs from country to country, but in general, I would relax. In Germany, these IR revalidations are a farce. It’s not a test, just a training flight. You can’t fail, except maybe if you can’t manage to fly straight at all.
The fee you pay to the examiner is essentially the fee you pay him for his signature. The examiners on their part usually try to make it as short as possible, the only focus being to correctly paint the required radar tracks on the ATC screen.
How is the PC compared to the check ride?
I would say that it usually is just a formality. Nowadays, everybody and his dog is an examiner and they all need to take so and so many exams per year in order to keep their license. None of them can afford to lose a customer and if he doesn’t fail you this time chances are high you will be coming back next year. If he fails you then you will just pick another examiner and talk bad about him among your pilot buddies and he might lose even more customers… Sorry to say that, but the way these checkrides are done now is just a farce, a waste of time, money and precious fuel.
NB: Just saw Boscomantico’s reply posted in the same minute … we even used identical wording
and NNB: There are proper checkrides out there, but those are done on simulators and you can actually get failed. This is because there is next to no competition among the training organisations who operate the simulators (for some types there is only one simulator available in Europe) and they don’t have to fear the loss of customers because there is nowhere else they can go.
I beg to differ. Yes, they are not usually failed, but then again nobody takes them who is seriously incapable. But if you do something really badly (i.e., you are unsafe) it will usually be trained, until you are safe, rather than receive a “fail”.
As I said, this may differ slightly from country to country…
I examine two approaches (precision/non-precision) some navigation, unusual attitudes and an engine failure if a twin. The main difference is that I allow the pilot to use the aircraft equipment to the maximum, not least autopilot.
I’ve failed one individual for busting DA (70ft) and another for a level bust brought about by an incorrectly set autopilot.
I guess that, in the UK, examiners earn their fee.
The main difference is that I allow the pilot to use the aircraft equipment to the maximum, not least autopilot.
Main difference? On every checkride in every type/class I have done so far (which is between 50 and 100 checkrides) I was told that I can use every working piece of equipment installed in the aircraft. Unless a specific detail of the test flight requires differently, e.g. a hand-flown approach or an approach on raw-data instead of flight director. Sometimes I had to almost beg “can we please keep the autopilot off, I really feel I need a little hand flying training”…
Thanks you all.
That relaxed me a bit.
Getting the license required a concentrated period with much flying. Coming back, winter, work and familie I have not had the change to fly nearly as much this year as I wanted. On top of that the IFR flights I have done have involved easy approaches. I found my old MS flight sim to practise non precision app. and hope to get a training flight in before.
I failed once. The examiner needs a check flight every 3 years, and I had accepted to be doing the flying while he “examined”, and the check pilot was in the back. I busted one of the margins on the approach, do not remember which one, and then the examiner had to bust me, or he would have failed himself.
Apart from that, I think I learned from most of the Prof Checks I have done. Although it is supposed to be checking, not training, examiners do not want to waist their time any more than you do, so they will (in my experience) discuss things you may be unsure of, and give advice, mostly very good advice.
Of course there was that special check where my vacuum failed just as we departed into broken at 700 ft, and flew approaches for more than an hour on old fashioned partial panel in IMC. The examiner realized the exceptional training opportunity and went along. Invaluable.
A friend of mine failed his initial IR exam last month. He accepted to have two examiners on board, where one examiner assessed the other.
If you are asked to have another examiner during a check ride, you should always object!
It brings extra stress and the chance for failing is much higher as there are four eyes watching all your movements.