Phoenix Air USA      
Hangar: 2178 Taxiway F Unit H Minden Tahoe Airport, NV
Office and Mailing Address: PO Box 1233  Genoa, NV  89411
Cell Phone: 352-250-5644

Flight Instruction

A complete aircraft checkout is included with the purchase of a Phoenix.  This includes 5 hours of flight instruction and 5 hours of ground training.  The ground training gives the owner a complete understanding of the tasks to do regular preventative maintenance, and all of the care and feeding of his new Phoenix.
Since the Phoenix is a glider, all airtime and instruction logged is glider time.  Some pilots log airplane and glider time in separate logbooks, others only keep one logbook.  All glider time can be applied to an airplane rating.  If you want to transition from gliders to airplanes, the FAA requires a minimum of 9 hours in an airplane in addition to your glider time.

Flight instrution: $150/hour
Ground instruction: $50/hour

The FAA requirements for an initial glider rating are 10 hours total time and 10 solo flights.  Also required are a written test and the flight exam with an FAA Examiner.  Most people need about twice this amount of time to be fully prepared for the flight test.  For each hour of flight training, about a half hour is required for preflight and postflight briefing.  A student pilot can solo at age 14, and must be 16 to get the private glider rating.  The average cost of a glider rating is around $5000.

The FAA requirements for a glider add-on rating to a private or sport airplane rating is 3 hours logged time in a glider and 10 solo flights.  Again, it would be a good idea to double these requirements to be ready for the flight exam.  No written test is required for the private airplane rated pilot.  The average cost is about $2000.

A self launch endorsement is required to operate any glider which can take off under it's own power.  This includes touring motorgliders like the Phoenix, or the retractable engine sailplanes which use the engine to get aloft, and then stow the engine and soar as a pure glider.  For pilots who are current in both an airplane and a glider the endorsement can be as quick as 2 hours of flight and 1 hour of ground instruction.  For the glider only rated pilot, the self launch endorsement may take around 15 hours of flight instruction.

We can transition you to aerotow at the Soaring NV, right here in Minden.

To download a copy of the Glider Handbook go to:

This book will give you all of the knowledge required for the glider rating.

Here are sample questions for the oral exam part of the practical test.  If you can answer these questions well, you won't have a problem with the examiner!


 What are the privileges and limitations of a private (commercial) glider rating?

What are the currency requirements to carry passengers?

What rating is required to fly motorgliders?

What class of medical is required to fly gliders?

What logbook entries are required?

When would you need a weak link on the towrope?

How much does a knot in the towrope reduce the strength of the rope?

What does AROW stand for?

How often must a commercial operator’s gliders be inspected?

Define pressure and temperature lapse rates.

How do you calculate the thermal index?

Which of the three types of clouds is a lenticular cloud?

Is there good soaring on the day of a strong cold front passage in Florida?

Explain how the central Florida convergence sets up.

Draw a mountain wave profile.

What are the ridge soaring turning and traffic rules?

Describe the magnetic compass turning errors.

How does a mechanical variometer work?

What does a total energy probe do?

What is the netto indication when sinking at a rate equal to the glider’s polar?

What are the three types of oxygen regulators?

When is oxygen use required?

How often does a parachute need to be repacked?

Draw the force vectors of a glider in flight.

At what flap setting does the flap produce more drag than lift?

Why are winglets common on high performance gliders?

How does the glide ratio change when using water ballast?

Why is a cg aft of the manufacturer’s limit dangerous?

Why on earth would you want to add ballast to the tail of a high performance glider?

How will hot humid air affect the performance of the glider?

When would you use a zero speed ring setting?

What rule of thumb can you use to cover maximum distance with a headwind?

Does the headwind rule of thumb work for tailwinds?

Contrast the differences in tow forces between a nose hook and a cg hook.

Which aeromedical factor is important to keep in mind in Florida?

What is the legal altitude for flight over Disneyworld in a glider?

What are the visibility and cloud clearance requirements over Seminole-Lake at 1,000’, 3000’, and 11,000’?

Can you fly into a Class D airport without a radio or transponder in a glider?

What is the length of the longest runway at Leesburg?

Is it common to file a flight plan with Flight Service when flying cross-country in a no-engine glider?

Describe how to disassemble the glider you fly.

What type of pattern would you fly into a cow pasture? 

After landing in the pasture, would you coast to the nearest driveway for a convenient retrieve?

Graph a cross-country profile for a roundtrip flight from Minden to Air Sailing with a NW 15kt wind.

Describe the three types of slips.
What is a positive control check and when is one needed?

Explain how to use the controls to perform a slipping turn and a skidding turn.

What are the two methods to skid during a turn (hint: one method when entering a turn and the other when exiting a turn).


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