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Old 02-03-2020, 11:35 AM   #1  
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Default Airline Pilots with their A&P

I am interested in getting my A&P so I can do more work in general aviation as well as being able to do more work on my own airplanes. Have any airline guys gotten their A&P in their free time while still flying full time? How did you manage the workload? Thank you.
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Old 02-03-2020, 03:14 PM   #2  
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I am interested in getting my A&P so I can do more work in general aviation as well as being able to do more work on my own airplanes. Have any airline guys gotten their A&P in their free time while still flying full time? How did you manage the workload? Thank you.
Time is probably better spent gaining hours so you can get to a major as fast as possible and get paid enough to pay somebody else to work on your plane. You have to do the math to determine if itís worth your time to save that money. I like doing my own work but I feel like it makes more sense to fly as much as I can during my off time.
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Old 02-03-2020, 05:30 PM   #3  
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Time is probably better spent gaining hours so you can get to a major as fast as possible and get paid enough to pay somebody else to work on your plane. You have to do the math to determine if itís worth your time to save that money. I like doing my own work but I feel like it makes more sense to fly as much as I can during my off time.
Thank you. I'm currently a regional CA. I wasn't going to commit to it unless I got on with a legacy.
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Old 02-03-2020, 08:11 PM   #4  
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I am interested in getting my A&P so I can do more work in general aviation as well as being able to do more work on my own airplanes. Have any airline guys gotten their A&P in their free time while still flying full time? How did you manage the workload? Thank you.

Iím not an airline pilot, but I can help with questions concerning the process of getting an A&P. Part 65 covers certification of airmen other than pilots. In Part 65, it states that an individual must have 30 months of full-time experience to qualify for the A&P. FSDOs generally assume a 40 hour work week when taking about 30 months of full time experience, which is about 5000 hours of hands on experience.

In the past, all that was needed was a letter from another A&P saying that you worked under him or her for the 30 months required by Part 65. Unfortunately, there were quite a few instances of that 30 months being ďpencil whippedĒ for someone to qualify. Now FSDOs Have cracked down on this and want to see considerable documentation. A couple of examples are signed off work orders in a repair station environment or a logbook documenting the 30 months of full time work, which as I said before equates to about 5000 hours of hands on time. When I was Chief Inspector at a repair station, our FSDO wanted to see employment history and work orders that were signed by the applicant covering every system on the aircraft.


After gaining the above experience, you then go to the FSDO with your letter stating that you worked for 30 months under an A&P and the supporting documentation. The FSDO interviews you and, if successful, approves you to take the three written tests and then three oral and three practical tests (the orals and practicals generally are all completed at the same time). The orals and practicals are administered by a Designated Mechanic Examiner. Youíll have $1500-$3000 invested in the written, orals and practicals.

The other option is going to a part 147 school, which are generally full time 18 month to 2 year programs. The school signs you off and you then take the written s, orals and practicals.

A person can also opt to get a light sport repairmen certificate and use the experience (again, 30months full-time) working on light sport aircraft to get the A & P. Generally FSDOs do not count the building of an experimental aircraft toward the experience requirement for the A&P.

If you were in the military, and were involved with aviation maintenance, the FAA website has a listing of all of the MOSs that would qualify you for the airframe, power plant, or both.

I will say that there is a lot of variability in the various FSDOs on what they want to see before they let you sit for the A and P, itíd be a good idea to have a conversation with them to see what they like to make the process a bit smoother.

Another thing to keep in mind are the possible liability implications. Generally every mechanic that returned an aircraft to service is sued if the unthinkable happens. If the aircraft is sold or even if you lend it out a friend, the door is open. As a possible legacy pilot youíd be a prime target, because, well, youíll have some net worth. If you feel that youíd like to midigate some of that risk, there is liability insurance available specifically for aviation maintenance , generally the limits are low and the cost is high, probably too high for someone conducting maintenance as only a hobby.

Hopefully this helps make the process a bit more visible to you and give you an idea of the time commitment involved. If you have any questions, please let me know!

Last edited by 4020Driver; 02-03-2020 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 02-04-2020, 07:56 AM   #5  
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A 147 school my be difficult due to the schedule, which, at least when I did it, was Mon to Fri, 2pm to 10pm, for the better part of 2 years. Not sure if your flying schedule would allow it. The "OJT" route is possible but you gotta find a good IA/shop willing to invest time into you and that is hit or miss. Now, it's best to do it before you have a family because you won't want to spend time in school/training during your off hours.
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Old 02-06-2020, 02:52 AM   #6  
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Thanks guys. Sounds like a 147 wouldn't be doable with my airline schedule (usually 4 on/ 2 off). I will have to look at "on the job" route with a FBO or shop.
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Old 02-06-2020, 01:02 PM   #7  
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Not sure if it is still doable, but one of my A&P instructors at the school I went to got his experience threw building a homebuilt. He built a KR-2 from scratch and documented every step of the process and had an A&P document and signed the work experience. I would call your local FISDO and see if they would be open to it.

With that being sed don’t work on peoples airplanes for fun. I have been a A&P IA for 15 years and start training at a regional in June. At that time I will never sign off another plane again. I have seen to many of my friends get caught up in frivolous lawsuits. The last one the pilot ran out of fuel in a 1940’s J-3 cub, and sued my friend who did the annual because he claimed the fuel gauge didn’t work. If I were you I would just build a homebuilt to satisfy that salt of the earth side of aviation.
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Old 02-07-2020, 12:46 AM   #8  
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I know several Pro pilots with A&Ps, every one of them just got a friend to write a letter. Right now, its easy to get an experience sign-off since industry is having a tough time finding enough minimum wage A&Ps. If your local FSDO wont do it just find one that will. I went to an A&P school so trust me, its a complete waste of time. You will likely learn more about making methamphetamines from your classmates than you will anything about aircraft. You can legally sign logbooks for nearly everything as a pilot/owner. An IA is worth having if you are operating a busy shop with at least 2-3 employees. If you can get a free A&P then go for it. Its really not worth having otherwise. If you are interested in working as a mechanic, spend some time in a southern penitentiary to get a feel for the culture.
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Old 02-07-2020, 06:23 AM   #9  
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JHC itís not THREW itís not FISDO

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Old 02-07-2020, 01:36 PM   #10  
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Not sure if it is still doable, but one of my A&P instructors at the school I went to got his experience threw building a homebuilt. He built a KR-2 from scratch and documented every step of the process and had an A&P document and signed the work experience. I would call your local FISDO and see if they would be open to it.

With that being sed donít work on peoples airplanes for fun. I have been a A&P IA for 15 years and start training at a regional in June. At that time I will never sign off another plane again. I have seen to many of my friends get caught up in frivolous lawsuits. The last one the pilot ran out of fuel in a 1940ís J-3 cub, and sued my friend who did the annual because he claimed the fuel gauge didnít work. If I were you I would just build a homebuilt to satisfy that salt of the earth side of aviation.
Musta been a crimp in the wire.
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