How long will it take to learn?
Your learning experience will depend upon the amount of effort you are prepared to put into it.
The number of launches it may take to go solo depends on how frequently you come to fly, how much time you spend reading and learning about flying, how you integrate with and learn from other members of the club as you go along, your ability to learn to physically manipulate the aircraft and MOST IMPORTANTLY learning to think ahead and plan your actions in response to what is happening during your flight.
Age is a factor. Younger people will generally learn more quickly than older ones. There is no upper limit to the age for learning - we have members well into retirement who are learning,
Our club is focused on safety in our operations both on the ground and in the air. In particular of course, we focus on ensuring that your training and subsequent flying is conducted in a safe manner.
We launch our aircraft by winch (as opposed to aero tow at a majority of clubs). This means that you may take a longer number of flights to learn at our club, but overall less hours of flight time compared to an aero tow club. This is because winch launch flights will generally be shorter because of not being able to be towed up to any height you want for a longer flight. In addition, a winch club such as ours will have a greater stress on safety and launch failure recovery procedures than is usual with aero tow. This takes additional time.
As mentioned above, how you progress will depend upon how often you come and fly. Once a month is a bare minimum - and would make for slow progress. Once a fortnight should make for reasonable progress - and if you are keen enough - more frequently whenever you can make it is better.
How much does it cost?
You can find our list of fees and charges on the Fees page (see above in the heading). Learning at CCSC will generally be significantly cheaper than at an aero tow gliding club because our launch costs are significantly less. You should budget for about $1,500-$2,000 (including club subs and GFA charges). This will generally be enough for at least 50 flights. Some people, though not all, may get to solo standard within that time. Some will take longer.
How does it relate to power flying
Gliders are just another aircraft - without the engine bit! They have the same aerodynamic controls - plus a set of air brakes (not found on power aircraft except for high performance jets).
They are substantially more efficient in their aerodynamic design than most power aircraft - hence the requirement for air brakes. The best gliders have a "glide ratio" of well up to 60:1 compared to a standard power aircraft of about 7:1 - that is about 8 times more efficient! Our training gliders have a best glide ratio of about 27:1, so if you are at a height of 1 Km above your decision height for landing, you could fly 27 Kms not counting the effects of wind and air currents.
Learning to fly a glider is a great precursor to learning power flying. You will learn how to judge and relate your flying to the outside environment better than in basic power flight training which is much more procedural and more focused on instruments and engine management.
Several of our young trainees have gone on to successful commercial and Air Force flying having had an excellent grounding in gliders.
Come and give it a try!
You are welcome to come and have a trial flight, try it out and see if you like it.
You can purchase a voucher for an Air Experience Flight on this website, or just come out and see us on a day that we are flying.