Learning To Fly - The First Step

TFC provides introductory rides to anyone interested in flying. For a nominal $99.00 charge we'll put you in the left seat with a certified flight instructor and let you fly the airplane. WHAT BETTER WAY TO DECIDE IF FLYING IS FOR YOU? Look in any community college catalog and you'll see they charge at least double this for a nothing more than a short ride. Contact our chief flight instructor or any officer to take advantage of this offer. The airport is located at the Collin County Regional Airport, McKinney TX. You can pay by check or use paypal_logo.  This was found on YouTube and thought it would provide some insight into the process of learning to fly:

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Beginning late 2004, the Transportation Security Administration initiated rules for citizenship validation and alien registration prior to the beginning of flight training.  These rules apply to everyone that begins flight training in TFC aircraft for Private or Instrument ratings.  For a guide to these TSA requirements, please see: https://www.aopa.org/tsa_rule

PVT_PFLYER_Fall2014_nobg300Spring Private Pilot Ground School did not make.

A Spring Ground School will be scheduled in March 2015 with the class schedule shown below. Contact our class organizer, Dick Stephens (Dick@stephens-family.net), or our Communications Officer, Charles Galles  (communications@texinsflyingclub.org).

Late registration for the class is possible and classes meet twice a week (Tues & Thurs evening from 6:30pm - 9:30pm) for about 9 weeks. The location is the Texins Activity Center at TI's main campus near Hwy 75 and I 635. The tuition for the class will be:
   For TFC Members - No Chagre except for materials
   For Non-Members - $190 plus materials
* for non-members, if you join the club during registration, your tuition will be Free.


PLEASE NOTE:In order to hold the class we need to have 10 signed up and paid students. You can pre-pay or show up and pay on the  night of registration. If we do not have 10 students, unfortunately we  will have to cancel the class and refund the tuition for those who have  paid.

Collin College also offers a couple of ground school courses including  one for those interested in earning their Instrument rating. The classes are held once a week starting Jan 21 through May 12.  So far the flying club has had about 6 members express interest in IFR ground school, not quite enough on our own to make a class feasible. However, those  interested in an IFR class might consider signing up for the Collin  College course instead. Cost is $295 plus books.

Collin College Instrument Rating Ground school: https://cereg.collin.edu/flexibleregistration/index.jsp?frc=CE&q=subj:xavi+numb:0100

TFC sponsored classes to be conducted at Texins Activity Center on TI's North Campus - LBJ & Central. The Texins Activity Center is located at the far north end of the TI Campus located at the northeast corner of Central Expressway (US 75) and LBJ Freeway (I-635).

From US 75, take the Midpark Exit.  Turn into the TI Campus and go through security; you'll need to show a photo ID.  Midpark becomes Drive F going east on the TI Campus.  Turn left / north at the first intersection onto Drive C (that runs north/south).  Turn right / east on Drive K which goes in front of the Activity Center.  Park in the lot to your right.

From TI Boulevard, enter the campus at Drive C traveling west.  You will need to show a photo ID.  Continue west until you see the corner of the North Building ahead and to your left.  Turn right / north onto Drive C.  Turn right / east on Drive K which goes in front of the Activity Center.  Park in the lot to your right.


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The FAA minimums required for receiving a PRIVATE pilot's license are:

  • 40 hours total time
  • 20 hours dual
  • Primary Training
  • 3 hours dual cross country (XC)
  • 3 hours of night flight
  • 1 night XC flight of at least 100 NM
  • 3 hours of Instrument
  • 10 hours solo
  • 5 hours solo XC
  • 10 hours dual and/or solo


These are wall clock hours and not tachometer hours.

The above requirements are not mutually exclusive. For example, a 2 hr cross country flight at night with your instructor would count in four different categories (total time, dual, dual XC, & night). With careful planning it would be possible to qualify for the FAA check ride with exactly 40 hours of flight. In practice we find it takes closer to 60 hours total.

A flight is considered cross country when the straight line distance between the take-off airport and the destination airport is greater than or equal to 50 nautical miles.

The night flight requirements are somewhat optional. That is, if you do not meet these requirements at the time of your checkride, you will be restricted to daytime flights only.


There are two different meters in the aircraft to measure "hours", however each measures time in a different way. Time measured by these two meters is referred to as either "Tach Time", or "Hobbs time".

Time measured by the Hobbs meter is the actual elapsed wall clock time that the aircraft engine has been operating. Time measured using this system is no different than looking at your watch when you start the engine and again when you shut it off, and taking the difference.

Time measured by the tachometer (ie. Tach Time) is based on a meter which is similar to the odometer in your car. But instead of measuring rotations of the wheels (miles) it measures rotations (RPM) of the propeller. It has been calibrated so that during cruise flight when one hour has elapsed on the meter, one hour of wall clock time will also have passed (ie. at cruise RPM tach time will equal Hobbs time). However, when power is reduced for descent or taxiing tach time runs slowly. In a primary trainer aircraft you usually use only .8 tach hours for each Hobbs hour you fly (.9 for the a/c in our x-country fleet).


The Flying Club has traditionally charged by the tach hour in the interest of promoting good power selection techniques. When you fly a plane at a commercial flight school, it costs the same if you run the engine at maximum throttle or if you reduce to recommended cruise RPM and lean the mixture for maximum efficiency and minimum engine wear. When you fly a club plane you reduce the clock rate when you reduce power, and within reasonable limits that helps both the member and the club.

Restated, the advantage to our members is that during shorter training flights (which most of your flying time is while learning to fly) you can save as much as 20% per hour when using the Tach Hour system. The advantage for the club is that members are motivated to fly the airplanes at best efficiency during longer flights at cruise speed.

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