Your flight training at Epic Helicopters will be unforgettable. Our FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Certified Flight Instructors will guide you along the path to becoming a rated helicopter pilot. Whether for fun or if you are exploring our Career Program, Epic is serious about your training needs.
Is Epic an FAA Part 141 Approved Pilot School?
Yes. Epic Helicopters is recognized as a leader in professional flight training and is designated by the Federal Aviation Administration as an approved Part 141 Pilot School. This designation means you will be held to a higher standard in your training and potentially save a substantial amount of money because of reduced minimum experience requirements.
What type of aircraft will I train in?
Epic is known for first-class personal service and our aircraft reflect that. We train our students in factory new Robinson R-22 Beta II and R44 Raven II helicopters – exceptionally well equipped compared to typical helicopter trainers. The R-22 helicopter is the most popular training helicopter because of its reliability and low maintenance intervals. This translates into less down time and fewer interruptions in your training schedule. If you are following a career path in helicopters, you will most certainly want to train in the Robinsons since the overwhelming majority of flight schools operate them and your future employer's insurance carrier will likely require Robinson experience.
What is the training program like?
There are two components in your training: ground instruction (“ground”) and flight instruction.
Ground training is necessary to gain knowledge of the helicopter and the flight environment. Epic produces highly qualified professional pilots because we train our students intensely in private one-on-one ground training sessions. Private training also allows you full flexibility with scheduling around your obligations, not other students in your class. The objective of the ground training syllabus (which you will receive on your first day at the Flight Academy) is to prepare you for the FAA Practical Test (also known as the final “Check Ride”).
Flight instruction is certainly the most fun part of your training. Your flight instructor will teach you all the maneuvers necessary to exceed the training standards required by the FAA. Solo flight happens during Stage II of your training and will be your first major accomplishment during the training program.
On a typical lesson, you will be at the school from 2-4 hours. You will complete a ground lesson and a flight lesson, followed by a comprehensive debriefing and critique of your progress after each flight.
We put you in the aircraft on day one.
Do you help in career placement if I choose to follow the career program?
We will assist you with job placement through résumé development, personal references, résumé distribution and career counseling. Epic often hires Flight Instructors from their own program if openings are available. Epic's Career Days will provide you the opportunity to visit with professional pilots in the local area and see the helicopters they fly.
Our reputation is the quality of instruction you receive and our goal is to have you hired into the best possible position to strengthen our reputation as a premier helicopter flight academy.
What requirements must I meet to become a helicopter pilot?
- Be able to read, speak, write and understand the English language.
- Be at least 17 years of age at the time of your FAA check ride.
- Obtain a medical certificate. Your instructor will speak with you about this on your first day of flight school.
- Satisfy the training requirements set forth by the FAA.
- Body weight must not exceed 240 lbs.
How long will it take me?
This depends on 3 things: motivation, funds availability and time availability. Scheduling is at your own pace. Most of our students take lessons 2-3 days per week. At this rate, the Private Pilot Course will be completed in approximately 6 months and the entire Career Program will be completed in 18-24 months. A fast-track pace of 5-6 days per week will complete the Career Program in as little as 6 months, weather depending.
Will I save money by training in airplanes first?
The short answer is no because you would be adding unnecessary time and costs. Airplanes and helicopters have entirely different handling characteristics. Some basic knowledge such as airport operations, radio communications and weather will carry over, but the skill set required for helicopters is much different. The amount of flight instruction needed to gain proficiency is approximately the same for students with and without airplane experience. Additionally, as a future professional helicopter pilot (if in our Career Program), it is important to build helicopter hours since your experience is determined in numbers of hours in category of aircraft you wish to fly for a career.
What will my first lesson be like?
UNFORGETTABLE. Nothing compares to flying a helicopter and you’ll soon discover why during your first lesson – the Discovery Flight. Choose from one of three discovery flights (basic, intermediate or advanced), each very different. Your first lesson will always include a pre and post flight briefing, explanation of helicopter flight controls and their effects, the flight environment, airport operations and radio communications and a host of flight maneuvers depending on which Discovery Flight you choose. Refer to our Discovery Flight section for detailed information on each option. Flight time accrued during discovery flights will count toward your rating.
For a real eye opener or if you are considering a career path, choose the Ultimate Discovery Flight.
What are the costs involved?
Cost estimates for our courses are provided for your convenience and can be reviewed in the Flight Training section. Total cost figures are only estimates because your training program will be finished when you meet or exceed the standards set forth by the FAA in the areas of aeronautical knowledge, aeronautical experience AND proficiency. Since each student learns at a different pace and because of the complexities involved in learning to fly a helicopter, we do not furnish quotes.
What are the medical requirements?
In the beginning of your training program, you will visit an aeromedical examiner, which your instructor will provide you with a list of examiners convenient to you. The exam consists of checking general physical condition and reviewing your medical history. If qualified, you will be issued a medical certificate which will also serve as your student pilot certificate. A disqualification does not necessarily mean you are unable to fly.
How do I get started?
Book a Discovery Flight online or call the Flight Academy at (817) 625-1800.
Non U.S. Citizen Student Application Process:
If you are not a U.S. citizen, you should visit the Transportation Security Administration websites for flight training candidates to learn what requirements you must meet before beginning your flight training with Epic.