Next Pilot Training Endeavor

Had some trouble sleeping last night (again) thinking about my next pilot training endeavor. I guess you know you are passionate about something when you can’t sleep thinking about it. I currently have about 215 hours and I need 250 to get my commercial and subsequently my CFI. My dilemma was if it was worthwhile to get my private helicopter rating as a time building to get towards my 250 hour mark; then take my commercial and CFI in the airplane.

Read about what advice a local CFI gave me about my “plan” after the jump.


I decided to fire off a late night email to Jesse Sherwood, owner and flight instructor for Executive Helicopter Solutions in Olathe, Kansas to get his opinion. I explained what options I was considering and he came back with an excellent recommendation — one I had not considered. Get the Commercial and CFI in the airplane then come back and do a commercial add-on rating in the helicopter. Since doing the private helicopter add-on will take 40-60 hours of flight time in the Robinson R22, Jesse indicated it would be faster to combine some of this training towards the 50 hours required for a commercial ticket in helicopters. Then when I am done I can maybe flight some revenue generating flights (sightseeing, photography, etc) Makes sense to me!

Sounds like I have a plan! I have already started cracking the books on the CFI and Commercial material for the airplane but plan to follow it up with the commercial helicopter. I can’t wait to get started! I’ll have to put my Robinson R22 POH and Training manual away for a little while (sigh). Guess I also need to update my budget and get my wife onboard with the new plan. I will keep everyone posted on my progress. Maybe I can sleep better tonight…

Author: Michael Whaley

I am a Private, Instrument Rated, pilot living in the Kansas City Metro area with my family and Siberian Husky. I work as a Network Engineer supporting data and voice infrastructure components here in Kansas City. In my spare time I fly.

1 thought on “Next Pilot Training Endeavor”

  1. I just tripped across your blog. I was going to email you but couldn’t find your email address here. I trained with Jess and he was an excellent CFI. If you’re interested in partnering on an R22 please let me know. Thanks.

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