A good question to ask yourself before you start instrument training is, why do you want this rating? The answers can usually be grouped into three areas. One common answer is that it’s a good thing to have in your pocket just in case you need it. Next is that it’s just another important step to a career in aviation. The third reason is that you want to increase the productivity of your personal or business flying.
There are different ways to obtain training for your instrument rating, and the reason you want the rating may have an effect on the training method that you choose. Should you enroll in a highly regimented FAR Part 141 school? Perhaps a full-time or part-time instructor at your local airport could do the job. Then, there are the accelerated courses. Some of these come to your location and provide intense training in your own airplane. Others require that you travel to their location. These accelerated courses usually have you finished up in 10 to 12 days. What’s the best? That depends on you. The articles included below will provide information to help you decide.
The instrument rating requirements, as specified in FAR part 61, require 50 hrs of cross county PIC and a minimum of 40 hours actual or simulated instrument time. However, FAR part 141 only requires 35 hours of actual or simulated time. In most cases part 141 will substantially save you time and money obtaining an instrument rating.
For instrument-airplane rating, your instrument training must include a cross-country flight in an airplane that is performed under instrument flight rules. This can be simulated or actual instrument conditions. This flight must consist of:
- A distance of at least 250 nm along airways or ATC-directed routing.
- An instrument approach at each airport.
- Three different kinds of approaches with the use of navigation systems (Example: ILS, VOR, GPS, etc).