The general flight experience requirements specified in FAR Section 61.57 state that pilots who act as PIC of a tailwheel aircraft carrying passengers or certificated for more than one required pilot flight crew member must have made three landings to a full stop within the preceding 90 days to maintain currency.
Under FAR Section 61.31, no person may act as PIC of a tailwheel airplane unless that pilot has received flight instruction from an authorised flight instructor who has found the pilot competent to operate a tailwheel airplane and has made a one-time endorsement so stating in the pilot’s logbook.
The endorsement must certify that the pilot is competent in normal and crosswind takeoffs and landings, wheel landings (unless the manufacturer has recommended against wheel landings), and go around procedures. The endorsement is not required if a pilot has logged flight time as PIC of tailwheel airplanes before March 15, 1991.
In addition to the requirements specified in FAR Section 61.31, the FAA recommends that pilots obtain a thorough checkout and transition training for each make and model of tailwheel airplane to be flown due to significant differences in operating characteristics of individual tailwheel airplanes. For example, many older types of tailwheel airplanes have pronounced or unusual stall and spin characteristics which differ greatly from those of more recently certificated tailwheel airplanes. In addition, many older airplanes may lack the comprehensive operating data and information typically found in pilot operating handbooks for comparable newer airplanes. Also, systems taken for granted in newer model airplanes may not exist in older aircraft, requiring a pilot to be familiar with unusual or seldom-used procedures. For example, the absence of electrical systems on many older aircraft compels the pilot to be familiar with hand propping procedures. The absence of attitude and heading gyroscopic instruments requires the pilot to depend more heavily on visual and other cues for basic aircraft control. Finally, the lack of radio equipment in many tailwheel airplanes obligates the pilot to be current in navigation by pilotage and no-radio traffic pattern procedures.
Additional factors may affect the instructional environment in tailwheel airplanes equipped with tandem seating. These factors may include reduced visibility from the rear seat, difficulty in communicating with the student due to seating position and higher noise levels, and lack of complete instrumentation or aircraft controls for the pilot in the rear seat.
CAMFLIGHT have instructors who are very experienced tailwheel pilots and instructor, so give us a call.