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Thread: Seaplane Rating

  1. #1

    Seaplane Rating

    Is a seaplane rating necessary to fly an LSA amphibious aircraft such as the SeaRey?

  2. #2
    SPA MEMBER rkittine's Avatar
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    Hi Call Dick Bovey at Argyle Aviation. He is a seaplane examiner. My understanding is that if it is an eLSA, you do not need a rating to fly without passengers, but if it is a Certificated LSA, you do. In any case, regardless of what is required, in an LSA you don't need a medical, only a drivers license and ability to certify you are in good health and the training for the rating will make you safe. There is a lot to flying on floats that is not the same as being on wheels, in the area as well as on the water. If you are a sailor, it really helps.
    Robert P. Kittine, Jr. - West Nyack Aviation, L.L.C. - New York

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    If the SeaRey is experimental (all are right now, they are working on LSA certification) you will find a statement in the limitations (the new limitations) that the pilot must comply with 61.31 (e) (f) (g) (h) (i) and (j) which will make the seaplane rating necessary.

    Dan

  4. #4
    LSA does not require a seaplane rating (which is really an add-on to a private or higher license), but rather a seaplane "endorsement" - an entry in your logbook signed by a certified flight instructor (CFI) testifying that you have received LSA seaplane training and are qualified to operate one.

    Insurance, of course, may be another matter. Even experienced private and commercial pilots who add a seaplane rating may not be able to insure their seaplane without additional training being required by the insurance company - 20 or more hours of dual instruction is not unusual!

    For me, I didn't mind, as there's plenty to learn and practice on the water, and as they say about your private ticket, a seaplane rating is only a license to learn! Good solid training is the key to safety, and that's really what matters most.

  5. #5
    SPA MEMBER Laura's Avatar
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    I'm glad to see that an endorsement at minimum is required. I highly recommend the training also.....even for people who have no intention of flying a on floats beyond getting the rating. There are things taught in that rating that really aren't taught for your private license. Things that are helpful in off airport operations or even emergency situations. "Good solid training"....I agree.

    Laura

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    I'm off to Florida tomorrow, to take the *same* class taught at the private level, to receive my seaplane (SES) rating for Sport Pilot. (61.5) Assuming, of course, that I pass my checkride. While it's true that I don't require a medical, I do have to self-certify myself as fit to fly, as do *all* pilots. Sport Pilot is broken down into various categories and classes, and to exercise the privilege in any of those areas, you must receive training, and have an endorsement that you have received that training. Note that my certificate does *not* have my SEL on it- I must carry that proof, in the manner of the endorsement (or a copy of same) with me. When I receive my SES, it will be online in the FAA airman's database along with my SEL. I am limited to flying those aircraft which are light-sport eligible. But, we're all bound by the same basic rules. With my SEL, I can fly a J3, but not a J3 on straight floats. For that, I need the SES.
    There is one interesting point to the original question though. It is NOT necessary to have a seaplane rating to fly the SeaRey, or any amphibian, *if* you don't operate it on water..

    $.02
    -Jack

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan92 View Post
    If the SeaRey is experimental (all are right now, they are working on LSA certification) you will find a statement in the limitations (the new limitations) that the pilot must comply with 61.31 (e) (f) (g) (h) (i) and (j) which will make the seaplane rating necessary.

    Dan
    Dan, reading 61.31 I do not believe that you are correct in that a seaplane rating is required. With an operating limitation outlined as above "e" would require you to have a complex endorsement for your SeaRey if you have a constant speed prop. "F" and "G" do not apply since a SeaRey is neither high performance nor pressurized. "H" does not apply since a SeaRey does not require a type rating. "I" only requires you to have a tailwheel endorsement to fly your SeaRey. "J" does not apply as a SeaRey is not a glider.

    Quite to the contrary, 61.31 k(2)(iii)(B) specifically exempts a person from needing a seaplane rating to act as PIC of an experimental seaplane without passengers.

    Not that I think this is a good idea...

    Helen

  8. #8
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    Helen you are correct in what you said about 61.31. I forgot to say that my limitations state:"The pilot in command of this aircraft shall hold a category/class rating or and authorized instructors logbook endorsement". It is also true that a sport pilot may fly the SeaRey as long as it was never certified at a gross weight of more than 1430 lbs, then it would require a private or higher. It is the builder that sets the max gross weight of the experimental aircraft and some have set it higher than the kit manufacturers recommendation. I know this has occurred in the SeaRey and RV builder communities.

    Dan

  9. #9
    I earned a float rating in a C-172 and currently fly a SeaRey. In my opinion, the SeaRey is easy to fly on and off the water, but its characteristics are very different and the float rating in no way prepared me to fly it. Regardless of what the regs say, I highly recommend getting type training in the SeaRey before flying one. If you don't, it's an open question as to whether you can learn faster than the hard lessons it will teach you. . .

  10. #10
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    To fly an LSA seaplane under Sport Pilot rules you need training and an endorsement from a CFI (float rated)...Then you need a proficiency check after the training from another CFI (float rated) then the CFI who gave you your training sends in an 8710-11 form to the FAA and you receive Sport pilot "seaplane" privileges on your License...It's the same darn thing as getting a seaplane rating on your private....except your checkride is with a second instructor instead of a DPE...you will receive a logbook endorsement...and now they are going to start listing Sport Pilot privileges on your certificate as you add them. A Private Pilot can add Sport Pilot seaplane endorsement to his certificate using this procedure but will be limited to LSA seaplanes unless he/she goes and gets a "regular" seaplane rating.

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