Question on valid aircraft for Light sport training

Here’s the question on Light Sport Aircraft:

I have a friend with a Piper Cherokee that says I can use his plane for my training to get my Light Sport flight training. Up until solo I can do this right?”


You can do part of your training in an airplane that is not a light sport but not all of it. Based on the following information, we at Third Coast Aviation (‘TCA‘) recommend that you do all of your Light Sport Aircraft license training in a light sport aircraft, that way you are ready for your solo flights and check ride, and you are familiar with the airplane. Jumping back and forth from one airplane to another will only add time to your training and confuse things.

Light Sport further details

As a sport pilot student, you won’t be able to fly solo in an aircraft that does not meet the definition of a LSA.  You also may not take the sport pilot practical test in an aircraft that does not meet the LSA definition.

Privileges and limitations of a sport pilot are found in subpart J of 14 CFR Part 61. The section regarding aircraft that sport pilots are allowed to fly (which would include solo flying by student sport pilots) can be found in 61.315. And since the applicant is acting as pilot in command during a practical test, these limitations would also apply to the aircraft being used for that practical test.

Here is the link to this answer on another site.

FAR 61.313 on category and class

§61.313 What aeronautical experience must I have to apply for a sport pilot certificate?

Use the following table to determine the aeronautical experience you must have to apply for a sport pilot certificate:

If you are applying for a sport pilot certificate with Airplane category and single-engine land or sea class privileges…

Then you must log at least 20 hours of flight time, including at least 15 hours of flight training from an authorized instructor in a single-engine airplane and at least 5 hours of solo flight training in the areas of operation listed in §61.311, which must include at least . . .

  • (i) 2 hours of cross-country flight training,
  •  (ii) 10 takeoffs and landings to a full stop (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport,
  • (iii) One solo cross-country flight of at least 75 nautical miles total distance, with a full-stop landing at a minimum of two points and one segment of the flight consisting of a straight-line distance of at least 25 nautical miles between the takeoff and landing locations, and
  • (iv) 2 hours of flight training with an authorized instructor on those areas of operation specified in §61.311 in preparation for the practical test within the preceding 2 calendar months from the month of the test.

The point is probably mute since I would likely require 20 more hours before taking a check ride.  The concern I have is the LSA type aircraft you were talking about, if it is a Grumman American A1A, A1AA or A1AB …. etc. I don’t believe it would qualify as LSA since the gross weight on the ones I have seen are 1500 or more and stall speed around 60 mph.  The trainer is the only one to come close but it’s gross is 1500.

I wish they did, I always liked the American Yankee; ie Grumman

About Third Coast Aviation

Founded in January 2017, Third Coast Aviation (‘TCA‘) is a Texas Gulf Coast aviation company providing Part 61 flight trainingaircraft acquisition, sales, and management services.  Our seasoned Certified Flight Instructors (CFI, CFII, and MEI) deliver flight training from Discovery Flights to Private Pilot License (PPL), Commercial Pilots License (CPL), CFI and beyond. Our admissions professionals help individuals transition into professional careers through our partnerships with regional air carriers such as GoJet Airlines Inc.; our business-to-business (‘B2B’) clientele provide explosive growth opportunity and longevity for our staff of Certified Flight Instructors (‘CFI’), maintenance professionals, and an exhilarating place for our students to learn!

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