Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Light-Sport Chronicles: Ears Wide Open

When Lou Mancuso talks about LSA...people listen

Something I've at least attempted all my life is to remember to open ears and close mouth when in the presence of someone who knows a heck of a lot more than I do (a frequent event.)

Lou Mancuso is one of those guys. He has run the business that has been in his family since 1946: Mid Island Air Service, a successful FBO on Long Island, N.Y. His dad Louis racked up thousands of hours during WWII teaching Brit and Yank flight cadets which end was up, then started a flight school after the war and taught son Lou the trade.

Lou, in turn, passed on his acumen and love of aviation to son Michael, a crackerjack international air-show pilot and current turboprop and jet charter pilot.

Lou has been in the GA game for decades, understands aviation marketing better than most and was an early adopter of LSA. He has also developed and continues to refine a standardized teaching program that focuses on giving pilots superb skill sets.

I'll have more from my talk with Lou about LSA down the road. In this issue, I want to talk about his flight-training program, honed in GA and refined for LSA training.

First, his own assessment of why he's in the game:

"In college, I read Maslow's 'Hierarchy Of Needs' theory, which says we all start at the bottom of the pyramid learning to provide basic food and shelter. At the very top is self-actualization, where you want to leave this world a better place than when you came in.

"I'm committed to developing flight training in the light-sport world by using my Personal Limitation Checklist (PLC), Ground Proximity Awareness (GPA) training , and our Gleim simulator to help students and instructors follow a nice, tight curriculum. I hope to create a model that flight schools will use years from now, once I get it perfected."

The Gleim sim is a desktop computer-based simulator system with preprogrammed lessons tailored to specific LSA. It reduces flight-training costs, since students can take unlimited repeats of each lesson module without an instructor present. Once modules are practiced, student and CFI go up and perform that very lesson in the airplane. I've talked with many LSA dealers who like the very affordable Gleim sim and use it in their training.


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