The FBO/flight-school’s focus on profitable pilot training often means that their aircraft are rather stripped down affairs, and their equipment is not always well maintained. Equipment not necessary for flight training—auto-pilots, current GPSs, weather, etc.—are often either not available or inoperable. They simply do not want the expense of installing such equipment in the first place, or want to avoid the expense and down-time associated with proper upkeep.
All of our aircraft are equipped with WAAS GPS. The GPS databases are properly up to date and IFR legal. We offer strikefinders and/or inflight weather capability, as well as auto-pilots in all our aircraft. We have a G1000/GFC700 aircraft in our fleet, and have upgraded our C182 with an Aspen glass panel and STEC 55X autopilot.
In order to ensure easy transition from one cockpit to the next we strive to make sure that all our aircraft are comparably equipped. And we are constantly exploring new technologies and equipment that might enhance the capabilities and safety of our aircraft, all the while paying close attention to cost-benefit.
While we are cost conscious, one area where we do not skimp is on maintenance and safety. On each flight members add oil as necessary, and squawk any issue however minor. Each plane has its own maintenance team, and the team evaluates each squawk—immediately addressing critical issues, and ensuring that minor squawks are fixed at the next service. We take great pride in the knowledge that our fleet is one of the best maintained around.