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Articles by John E. McLain

Prior to his retirement as a career flight instructor, John McLain accrued over 18,000 flight hours of which more than 13,000 were dual given. He has conducted over 4000 flight tests in his twenty-five years as a designated pilot examiner. These articles first appeared in The Southern Aviator and are reprinted with John's permission.

Be Careful of GPS
February 2, 2006 – 1:00 pm | Comments Off on Be Careful of GPS

I came back recently from Myrtle Beach, S.C., to Raleigh Durham, N.C., in a Cessna 150 with a single nav/com radio, in solid instrument conditions, and terminating in a 600-1 VOR approach.
Back in the early …

Observations from an examiner
October 6, 2005 – 5:16 pm | Comments Off on Observations from an examiner

I have been a instructor for more than 40 years, and a pilot examiner for 26. In these two positions, I have seen students and pilots with a wide range of abilities, education and experience. …

Advice Heeded
June 2, 2005 – 11:31 am | Comments Off on Advice Heeded

This year is my 45th year as a pilot. In that time, I have benefited greatly from the advice and guidance of many experienced pilots. Recently I unpacked all of my old log books and …

Back to Basics
February 3, 2005 – 12:56 pm | Comments Off on Back to Basics

Over the past year or so while conducting flight tests and recurrent training, I’ve noticed an alarming trend: the almost total dependence on advanced navigation systems such as GPS, flight data systems, and the so-called …

October 7, 2004 – 1:06 pm | Comments Off on Complacency

The toughest flight test by any standards is the Private Pilot Flight Test. This starts from square one. The applicant is not assumed to have demonstrated any aviation knowledge or skill beforehand. Through oral and …

Logging Pilot In Command Time
August 5, 2004 – 4:15 pm | Comments Off on Logging Pilot In Command Time

A recent letter to the editor raised the question of Pilot in Command (PIC) and whether a safety pilot could log PIC time. This is one of those “can of worms” questions.
In my opinion, the …