I promised I’d write a review on my return. Just landed back in Birmingham and couldn’t wait to get to my office to communicate with y’all.
I just returned from Rick McGuire’s amazing facility and believe that in nearly 25 years flying simulators there is no better training facility in the country. AST’s sim is state-of-art, Rick’s training technique is derived from decades experiences flying and teaching in a variety of twin Cessna airplanes. He trains in his own airplanes if you need that kind of experience from a glass cockpit 172 to a 421 (as well a 340 is part of his stable). Rick owns and operates these airplanes from his hanger in Burnet, Texas. Rick had me in situations I never imagined; and the “wow: factor of learning how to not only survive but have confidence in our airplanes and our ability is rewarding beyond the entrance fee (which is fairly priced…and don’t try to pay for lunch…Rick insists it is “part of the deal”.) I have flown as a King Air 350 captain in a Part 135 operation (along with and at the same time my 402-B) so I have the simulator experience to boast of AST’s exceptional course and Rick’s teaching technique. Further, the sim is the closest I’ve ever flown to that of a real airplane. It took no time to get acclimated….and because it is full motion…the reality is remarkable Hard to find a real full-motion sim for our airplanes anywhere especially at this price point. As an A&P, Rick’s textbook knowledge of these airplanes is like having Tony Saxon in the right seat, in the sim and during ground school. I lost count, but believe we did 40 engine failures in a multitude of configurations….heavy, high/hot, etc. He alternates the ground school and sim training so that neither becomes fatiguing. It is just the right mix over the two day recurrent course, though I left exhausted but exhilarated. We live in Birmingham, Alabama but made it a weekend adventure touring nearby Marble Falls, Austin and the wine country. Please give Rick every consideration; he is a treasure, a remarkable multi-talented professional who gives it his all. He is not trying to build time, has nothing to prove and that makes him an extraordinary instructor and pilot mentor.
This is the best training investment I’ve ever made. Any questions I can be P/M’d via Ericland402@aol.com or by cell: 904-874-0755.