The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

On September 1, 2004 the FAA inaugurated a new pilot certificate dubbed the "sport pilot" that makes learning to fly easier and more affordable that ever. Intended primarily for recreational use, you can now become a pilot with as little as 20 hours of flight instruction! In addition, the FAA also created a new category of affordable "light-sport aircraft"!

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chicagorandy
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby chicagorandy » Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:47 am

Why......when I was in my 20's..... never mind, I can't remember my 20's - lol

Suffice it to say that IF the Sport Pilot rules allowed the Cessna 150/152 'or equivalent', or a 2-seat 172 type craft there is a flight school readily available not 15 minutes from my front door. Rental planes too.

A presently qualifying LSA? Not so much.
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TimTaylor
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby TimTaylor » Sun Sep 22, 2019 12:35 pm

chicagorandy wrote:Why......when I was in my 20's..... never mind, I can't remember my 20's - lol

Suffice it to say that IF the Sport Pilot rules allowed the Cessna 150/152 'or equivalent', or a 2-seat 172 type craft there is a flight school readily available not 15 minutes from my front door. Rental planes too.

A presently qualifying LSA? Not so much.


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Joe T
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby Joe T » Fri Nov 01, 2019 2:57 pm

All,

I have been following the 'rumored' LSA changes for quite a while. I am sure major rule changes are on the way for the certification of an LSA, but who knows? :?:

What I have really wondered is how any change in the LSA rules will affect the Sport Pilot License. As I understand it, they are two separate issues.

Any clarification is greatly appreciated.

Regards,
Joe T.

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drseti
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby drseti » Fri Nov 01, 2019 3:29 pm

As I see it, Joe, they are two separate issues, but linked. LSA limitations are clearly defined in the FARs. A separate FAR created Sport Pilot rules, and stipulated that anyone exercising Sport Pilot privileges could only do so in an LSA. So, if the definition of an LSA were to he changed, Sport Pilots (and those operating under Sport Pilot rules) could automatically operate those aircraft meeting the new definition of an LSA.
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TimTaylor
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby TimTaylor » Fri Nov 01, 2019 4:07 pm

For example, the definition of what qualifies as LSA could increase the gross weight and stall speeds such that a Cessna 150 would meet the new LSA definition. In that case, a Sport Pilot could fly a Cessna 150. Again, why worry about what may or may not ever happen? Until something changes, nothing changes.
Last edited by TimTaylor on Fri Nov 01, 2019 4:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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drseti
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby drseti » Fri Nov 01, 2019 4:08 pm

TimTaylor wrote:Until something changes, nothing changes.


Exactly!
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
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FastEddieB
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby FastEddieB » Fri Nov 01, 2019 5:17 pm

I suppose that rather than a blanket increase in stall speed and/or gross weight, the FAA could simply provide a list of training aircraft that could be newly defined as Light Sport, in spite of exceeding current limits.

I’m thinking Cessna 150, Piper Tomahawk, Beech Skipper and Grumman AA1 as “LSA Equivalent Training Aircraft”, for starters.

Thoughts?
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TimTaylor
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby TimTaylor » Fri Nov 01, 2019 5:21 pm

FastEddieB wrote:I suppose that rather than a blanket increase in stall speed and/or gross weight, the FAA could simply provide a list of training aircraft that could be newly defined as Light Sport, in spite of exceeding current limits.

I’m thinking Cessna 150, Piper Tomahawk, Beech Skipper and Grumman AA1 as “LSA Equivalent Training Aircraft”, for starters.

Thoughts?

Yes, they could do that, but that would create an inconsistency. Seems like they would do both. Decide which aircraft they thought would be appropriate, then increase weight and stall speed to encompass those aircraft.
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby 3Dreaming » Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:07 pm

FastEddieB wrote:I suppose that rather than a blanket increase in stall speed and/or gross weight, the FAA could simply provide a list of training aircraft that could be newly defined as Light Sport, in spite of exceeding current limits.

I’m thinking Cessna 150, Piper Tomahawk, Beech Skipper and Grumman AA1 as “LSA Equivalent Training Aircraft”, for starters.

Thoughts?


But what if my airplane is not on the list, yet it has a gross weight and stall speed that is lower than those listed?

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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby FastEddieB » Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:12 pm

TimTaylor wrote:
FastEddieB wrote:I suppose that rather than a blanket increase in stall speed and/or gross weight, the FAA could simply provide a list of training aircraft that could be newly defined as Light Sport, in spite of exceeding current limits.

I’m thinking Cessna 150, Piper Tomahawk, Beech Skipper and Grumman AA1 as “LSA Equivalent Training Aircraft”, for starters.

Thoughts?

Yes, they could do that, but that would create an inconsistency. Seems like they would do both. Decide which aircraft they thought would be appropriate, then increase weight and stall speed to encompass those aircraft.


Sure. I guess the rationale could be that these particular aircraft* have all been proven “safe and effective” in the hands of student pilots with minimal training. But just idly speculating, anyway,


*Except maybe the AA1. With its short wingspan and faster approach speeds, it might not be the greatest choice for an exemption.
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby TimTaylor » Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:14 pm

How did they do it last time? Do it the same way.

To me it's simple. You define what an LSA is, then you list all the aircraft that meet that definition.
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drseti
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby drseti » Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:30 pm

TimTaylor wrote:To me it's simple. You define what an LSA is, then you list all the aircraft that meet that definition.


Agree.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
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Joe T
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby Joe T » Mon Nov 11, 2019 2:30 pm

TimTaylor wrote:For example, the definition of what qualifies as LSA could increase the gross weight and stall speeds such that a Cessna 150 would meet the new LSA definition. In that case, a Sport Pilot could fly a Cessna 150. Again, why worry about what may or may not ever happen? Until something changes, nothing changes.



Sorry for the late reply. I've been out of town for a while.

Suppose a company was developing a new LSA and around 2016 was ready to begin the prototype build. Then, the rumors start. New LSA might be up to 3,600#?? New LSA might be four passengers??? New LSA might have significantly higher maximum speed?

I am sure several LSA projects have been put on hold while the FAA 'manages' this rule change. That's the worry. The LSA industry is in limbo.

If the proposed changes were very minor, maybe only a weight increase to ~1,600#, that would not be a big change. But, making the new LSA rules into a C-172 class airplane, that is a radical change. It is that potential change that has brought new LSA development to a halt.

And, still the question of how that will impact the Sport Pilot License. In my mind, the Sport Pilot License is the only reason LSAs exist. If I needed a regular pilot's license to fly a new design LSA, then why buy an LSA? There are plenty of good used C-172s and Cherokees out there, an less costly than most new LSAs.

Just my 2 cents worth.

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Joe T.

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Warmi
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby Warmi » Mon Nov 11, 2019 3:29 pm

By the same token if they allow Sport Pilots to fly C172s or c152s , that will kill the current market or at least push prices significantly down.
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Otto
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Re: The new Sport Pilot Rule Changes

Postby Otto » Mon Nov 11, 2019 8:31 pm

Warmi wrote:By the same token if they allow Sport Pilots to fly C172s or c152s , that will kill the current market or at least push prices significantly down.

That is the risk with anything. Prices of existing LSAs go down, prices of C-150s go up. And the manufacturers would have a few hundred extra pounds to build more awesomeness into the next generation of new LSAs. Not the end of the world, just change, mostly for the better. And it doesn't matter what might be best for the world. Maximize the rules, whatever they are at the moment, for your situation.


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