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Note: As of June 2018, I am no longer offering transition training. See below for more info.

After becoming a private pilot, if you're fortunate, you will run into folks that fly these homebuilt aircraft called "RV's".  You will quickly find why the pilots of such aircraft become fanatics.  They are arguably the best handling and some of the most fun aircraft a person can own.  Owning an aircraft does require an initial investment, but it is actually far more affordable than most people would believe.  You can own a small family airplane for about the same cost as a regular family car these days, and insurance is about the same for many people as such a car costs. Partner up with another pilot and it becomes downright easily affordable to own and maintain an airplane.  I am a big proponent of aircraft ownership, and although I am a die-hard RV owner, I actually recommend that a new pilot look for a good certified aircraft such as a Beechcraft Musketeer/Sundowner, Cessna 172/177, or Piper Cherokee/Warrior for a first aircraft.  You can buy one, own it for a few years, and as long as you hangar it and take care of it, you will likely get most of your initial purchase investment back out of it when you sell it.  Somewhere along the way though, you will run into an RV pilot and perhaps take a flight, that will leave you blown away.  You will find out that RV's can be more afford-ably maintained, more efficiently flown, and can take you further and faster than many other aircraft for your dollar, while giving you a much more sweet handling feel.  If you're like me, you will finally make the decision to build such an aircraft, so that you yourself can be the "maintainer" of said plane. It gives you tremendous freedom.

But as you complete your RV, or purchase one, you, and your future insurance company, will want to protect your investment.  RV's are slick and in some cases more powerful than your ordinary every day trainer, and a pilot should be prepared for such an airplane.  In fact, most insurance companies will demand a few hours of transition training before insuring your airplane with you as the pilot.  While this sounds like a burden, most pilots find transition training is the best money they spend on their airplane.  It allows them to comfortably and safely fly their first flights with the aircraft.

What about building your own airplane in order to learn to fly?  Actually, I do no generally recommend this path.  First of all, there are many choices made during the build of an aircraft that would be best made by a pilot who understands the function and use of all things. And if a pilot plans to build an IFR capable aircraft, I also suggest that the pilot first obtain an instrument rating before they build the instrument panel of their aircraft.  Doing so will better prepare them for the design decisions they will make during the build.  The RV's will also likely require a slightly longer training period than your typical training aircraft, simply due to the fact that with their superior acceleration and climb, and slicker, less decelerating aerodynamics, things just happen faster during the trip around the airport traffic pattern.  That said, the RV-9, RV-10, RV-12, and RV-14 model aircraft are all fairly docile and easy to fly, and they are certainly capable of being used as training aircraft.  One of my purposes for even building an RV-14 was to use it as a trainer for my family, and it is working out well for that purpose.  Just be aware that the insurance rates for a student or very new pilot on these aircraft will be much higher than the rates on an experienced pilot...the RV-10 in particular will likely cost easily $2000/yr additional.  I believe most pilots would be well suited to buy or become partners in a nice certified trainer aircraft and fly at least 100 hours, if possible, before launching their RV project.  Ideally obtaining their instrument rating before finishing their RV as well.

I presently offer transition training in yours or my RV-14 , or YOUR RV-10 if you have one.  I have a Letter of Authorization from the FAA (LODA) permitting me to provide transition training for hire in my RV-14 (N14YT) but not my RV-10 at this time.  This was done in order to easier provide transition training to RV-14 builders, as there will be a large need for such training over the next few years.  I have not applied for such a letter for my RV-10 because there are other places offering transition training in the RV-10.  I will, however, offer transition training in YOUR aircraft if you need.  With training and proper pilot risk management and safety we hope to keep the RV-10/RV-14 safety record as excellent as it currently is.


Transition Training No Longer Available

When I first started offering Transition training, I was informed by many who had offered it in the RV-10 in the past that it wasn't very lucrative, but I was not in it for an income source. I have a busy day job in a technical field.  I simply wanted to be able to offer a source for transition training for the RV-14A to prevent builders from having to fly their newly completed airplane without any transition training.  Logistically, organizing part time training is a P.I.T.A., because many builders would have to travel from far away locations, on a set schedule, and then deal with unpredictable weather properly meshing with my day job work schedule.  Consider too that 1/2 of the year in Wisconsin has colder temps, and especially November thru March when Daylight Savings Time kicks in, it actually is dark before and after work for me. A man needs his weekends to complete the things he can't get done during the week, and so I really only intended to offer this as a weekday evening type activity.   So from a time schedule, it's tight as it is.  But then the financial downside hits.   It can cost an additional couple thousand dollars in insurance annually just to offer such training in an RV.  In 2017-2018, I had only 2 people interested in transition training.  One of them had an insurance company require 1 hour dual, and the other 2 hours dual.  Great, from the standpoint of my schedule, but that leaves a big financial deficit in paying for the insurance.  So in June 2018, I decided not to offer training any more.  I had been quoting $250/hr as a charge, which would have been seemingly an easy way to "break even", but apparently the insurance companies see more risk in me flying with you in my plane, than they do you flying your own plane, because they only required 1 or 2 hours dual, which for some people may be fine, but others may be way less than necessary.  Lucky the guys I flew were very current pilots with a large variety of experiences in small GA planes.  At any rate, I had been thinking maybe a sliding scale may fix the insurance issue...say $500 for 1-2 hours, $250/hr for 3 or more.  That may work, but it feels like gouging to me, and since I'm trying to fit this all into a job/family/projects schedule, I decided it's just better to let it be.  Transition training is still available in Oregon from Mike S. who works closely with Vans.  It is important to get on his schedule though, as he books far in advance.  If I know of other providers of RV-14 transition training, I'll post them on this site when I find them.  But for now, I'm out of it.  In 2019, when I no longer have young adults around the house, and I'm bored out of my mind, maybe I'll offer it again.  Sorry about that.