General - NOTE: It is MSS's policy that it's members who hold a private glider rating (or higher) maintain their own currency per the Federal Air Regulations. Members are reminded that if they have not flown for an extended time that they consider having an instructor (or another rated member who is current) ride with them as a safety pilot.
Resources - There are a number of informative documents under the Member Resources>Documents>Training menu. It is suggested that members visit this folder and read items of interest. They are also referenced and linked below.
AED -The club has an AED in the clubhouse (Located below the radio on the south wall) and this video is about using one: AED Video
Pilot Ratings - FAA Minimum Requirements - We often get questions surrounding what it takes to get a particular rating. Whether starting from scratch or transitioning from a power rating one can start to understand by reviewing the regulations. The Soaring Society of America has a useful discussion and summary that can be found HERE.
Lessons from MSS Instructors - Individual lessons with MSS instructors are conducted at the discretion of each instructor. Duty instructors are assigned on Saturdays/Sunday in the months of April through October. The following resources will be employed in varying ways by the instructor and are here for reference for members to study and maintain currency.
Glider Flying Handbook, FAA-H-8083 - The Handbook is the primary reference concerning glider flying. It is available under the Member Resources menu> Documents>Handbook. Or, access it HERE
Manuals-Aircraft and Avionics
Variometer Total Energy Compensation - The metal "pole" on the glider's tail is called a TE probe. What is it and how does it assist the variometer? An article by Tom Knauff and Dave Nadler explains it. You can read it HERE.
Flying the pattern at Lawrence Field - An overview of a properly flown pattern is laid out in the document MSS Pattern Notes and is the standard by which members undergoing training are expected to operate. Members are encouraged to reference this document and maintain proficiency to increase the safety of their operations. NOTE: The diagram shows LH pattern. Gliders fly RH and power, LH at our field.
Runway 25 Layout - Runway 25 is the runway that is most often used due to prevailing winds being from the south and west most of the time. There are markers consisting of flush-mounted tiles and traffic cones that provide a layout to keep things organized, especially when it is busy. See the RWY 25 LAYOUT document for full details.
Tow Pilots - Memphis Soaring Tow Pilots can review the following link to the Soaring Safety Foundation's tow pilot course to learn and refresh important aspects of towing:
Safety/Line Officer Duty - (See the Operations manual for a full description of these duties)
Memphis Soaring requires its members who are rated as a private glider pilot, and are not either an instructor or tow pilot, to serve as a Safety Officer in rotation with other members. Safety Officers are required to be rated, at a minimum, a private glider pilot.
Line Officers are members not performing the role of Tow Pilot, Instructor Pilot or Safety Officer. They serve in rotation with other members who meet this criteria.
All members should review and maintain an understanding of wing running which can be seen at the following links:
Wing Runner Course
Soaring Safety Foundation - The Soaring Safety Foundation has a web site that has an abundance of resources for those who fly in the soaring community. Excellent place to visit if you are a glider pilot, tow pilot or glider instructor.
Bronze Badge Study Resources - On the Foundation website there is a great distance learning resource to prepare for the Bronze Badge Test. On that page are about 20 hyperlinks to take you to many other information sites. Well worth the visit so check it out!
Cross Country Flying - Flying cross country is the goal of many who get into soaring. To test ones ability get away from the field is a challenge between the pilot and the weather that is very satisfying. The following resources can help one understand more:
Intro to XC Soaring - Gertsen
Off Airport Landings - Gersten
Thoughts on Bailing Out (With a Parachute)
Flying Further and Faster - Part 1
Flying Further and Faster - Part 2
The Importance of Properly Setting the MacCready Value
When doing Badge Flying one must have a flight recorder that has been calibrated in the last 5 years. The calibration record for each of the club's unit is under the Documents page. Please note that before you attempt a flight you must declare it and have an Official Observer. Ask Mark Olinger for clarity if you are not sure.
FAA Requirements for Glider Pilot Certificates - Go here to learn just what is required to secure a rating.
On-Line Practice Tests
Kip's FAA Written Test Preparation Page
Practical Test Standards - For glider pilots - After one solos they prepare to take what is referred to as the Practical Test. It is an oral and a flight test administered by an FAA Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE). These documents, relevant to the rating sought, is what the DPE follows to test the applicant. A thorough review will make the experience less of a mystery.
Federal Aviation Regulations and other FAA references -
Part 61--Certification: Pilots, Flight Instructors, and Ground Instructors (376 KB)
Part 91--General Operating and Flight Rules (442 KB)
Airman Knowledge Testing Supplement - If (when) you take the FAA written, the test makes reference to various graphics, pictures, etc. This document is where they come from.
Learning Statement Reference Guide - After taking a written, you will receive a listing of the areas you did not answer correctly and will require remedial ground schooling in. This document is what your instructor will use to know what areas need working on.
There are a variety of publications on weather available to us. The FAA published one that is comprehensive and is available under an Advisory Circular publication. The title of it in book form is Aviation Weather. Access it here: Advisory_Circular/AC_00-6B
Weather Services - Formally named AC 00-45H CHG 2, this AC (Advisory Circular) explains U. S. aviation weather products and services. It provides details when necessary for interpretation and to aid usage. This publication supplements its companion manual, AC 00-6, Aviation Weather, which documents weather theory and its application to aviation.
Introduction to the Meteorology of Soaring Flight
The Thermal Soaring Adiabat Chart
Skew T Chart Article - Most of us have heard of the Skew T chart and here is an article on how to read one.
Weight and Balance - MSS member Wayne Gelfand created the following Power Point presentation on weight and balance. Click on the following to have a file download of the presentation. Use your PP Program to view. Weight and Balance
Aging Pilots Discussion - Soaring is largely made up of older pilots...certainly aging pilots! Key Dismukes was the chief human factors research scientist at NASA for many years. In 2019 he presented at a meeting of a group named Lighthawk on the issues of piloting and aging. The following link is for the PP file: Aging Pilots Power Point