Golden State Trikes
Flying For Your Pleasure
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Private Pilot Training

Private Pilot is currently the highest certification that a weight-shift pilot can obtain. The Private Pilot will be qualified to operate in complex airspace (Class B, C, and D), above 10,000 feet, with visibility as low as 1 mile in certain airspace, and at night. A Private Pilot certificate is also necessary for aerotowing and for salespeople demonstrating aircraft for sale. The training requirements are given in FAR 61.109(j).

Oddly, while ultralight training time can be applied toward the Private Pilot certificate, ground and flight training received from a Sport Pilot Instructor will only be accepted if your instructor also has Private Pilot weight-shift certification. The FAA has issued a small number of exemptions to this requirement to weight-shift Instructors who are also certified to fly airplanes at the Pivate Pilot or higher level.

I am one of the very few Weight Shift instructors authorized to train students for their Private Pilot - Weight Shift certificate. I am not, however, currently offering flight training at night. The FAA will issue Private Pilot certificates with a night flying restriction for those who haven't received the required training.


Aeronautical Experience Requirements (FAR 61.109(j)

(j) For a weight-shift-control aircraft rating. A person who applies for a private pilot certificate with a weight-shift-control rating must log at least 40 hours of flight time that includes at least 20 hours of flight training with an authorized instructor and 10 hours of solo flight training in the areas listed in §61.107(b)(10) and the training must include at least—

(1) Three hours of cross-country flight training in a weight-shift-control aircraft;

(2) Except as provided in §61.110, 3 hours of night flight training in a weight-shift-control aircraft that includes—

(i) One cross-country flight over 75 nautical miles total distance; and

(ii) Ten takeoffs and landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport;

(3) Three hours of flight training in preparation for the practical test in a weight-shift-control aircraft, which must have been performed within the 60-day period preceding the date of the test; and

(4) Ten hours of solo flight time in a weight-shift-control aircraft, consisting of at least—

(i) Five hours of solo cross-country time;

(ii) One solo cross-country flight over 100 nautical miles total distance, with landings at a minimum of three points, and one segment of the flight being a straight line distance of at least 50 nautical miles between takeoff and landing locations; and

(iii) Three takeoffs and landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport with an operating control tower.


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