Sunday, October 8, 2017

Studying and Passing the FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate Test

In May 2017 I announced that I started a new company called,


Its my Drone Photography business and I have learned in the last year, that you cannot fly drones commercially without a Part 107 Remote Pilot License. 
Anyone who does, can be fined and jailed for doing so! 

So, not only did I have to learn how to pilot a very sophisticated aircraft capable of Ultra HD type videos and pictures, but I had to learn how to navigate the NAS (National Airspace System) which is governed by the FAA! 

So here is my journey on how I was able to complete my personal study and pass the exam and the steps to get my Certification, I hope you enjoy the ride!



First off, the best place to find any and all information on the Drone rules is to click on the FAA Logo above. This is the FAA site dedicated to everything drones. The top 6 documents labeled as Suggested Study Materials are exactly what you need to read and it is fairly dry reading, but its important to learn everything you can to be a safer pilot.

Before you purchase a drone, you should probably understand some of the basic rules of flight in your area. Click the link below to see the set of community guidelines for flying for fun!

https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/fly_for_fun/



So now you know where you need to go to get started flying the correct way.

Now for me it took about 2 hard weeks of studying but I was learning and reading over 5 months slowly, watching YouTube Videos, and taking practice tests to get familiar with the test materials.

So, if you are still interested in learning more about the test, then keep reading!



For me it was a great experience and I was lucky as I only needed to read 2 items to really understand what was needed to pass the Certification Exam and here is where you find them.



Click on the image above to get the Remote Pilot - sUAS Study Guide, this was the single most important document to help me learn.  The current version is from August 2016. This has everything except Airport signs and information and for that look at the next paragraph.


This is the ASA test prep guide. There are plenty of online tests, but this one explains everything and it has over 243 questions, many of which I saw on the exam! They have a newer version for 2018, and I am not sure how different it is, but mine was only $20 at my local Barnes and Noble. It also comes with 5 practice tests which were very close to the test as well. It really gets you ready to pass after you have studied the material and understand it.



For me Airspace, Weather and Weight and Balance were hardest to learn but there were plenty of Youtube Videos that I watched to learn about it.

Just type in YouTube what you having trouble with and it's there! I will tell you that one video was the best when getting close to the test. Tony hooks you up with everything you should know for the quick stuff. I watched this 2 times while studying and it was immensely helpful!


So now you have studied and you learned a lot. Now its time to schedule for the test. You must call the numbers below and then spend $150. If you fail you can't take the test for 14 days and then it will cost another $150, so know the material!!! The two closest testing centers to my home were the Dunkirk and Rochester airports as there is none in Buffalo. Click the link below to find a testing center in your state.


2-3 days before the exam, was a heavy cram for me. I spent any free time I had reading and testing myself. Writing down everything I didn't know and then studying it using my materials above, youtube and web searches. The Test is 60 questions and you can miss 18. It is all multiple choice with only 3 answers to choose from. You take it on a computer and you are given a supplement that you refer to for images, sectional charts and tables that are referenced on the test.

So after spending about $170 $($20 for the book and $150 for the exam), and about a total of 40 hours of studying, I took the test and passed with a 90!! If you can read and comprehend then you can easily pass the test without spending $200-$500 on an online flight school.

Below is my most used links to help you get the most from my searches for the best resources.

I use this site for all my pre-flight briefings!



Everything you need like -  NOTAMS, Weather Briefs/METARs/TAFs, Sectional Charts and TFR's. Critical to your pre-flight briefing.

Practice Tests

3DR has a great online test of 130 questions

Buy the book from above from Prepware, you get 5 free tests
These tests were the closest to the exam. Very helpful!!!

A bunch of users on Quizlet made flash cards!

Simple but easy to start with

There are several others but the 4 above were helpful to me.

Study Materials

On Facebook, Great support Group for Testing info

Airspace:

Overall


All of this should get you ready, but if you have any questions post a comment and I will try to give you the best answer! 

Good Luck!











Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Southern Tier Real Estate Stats



This is a chart that will self update 4 areas of the Southern Tier - Olean, Jamestown, Ellicottville and Lakewood Average Sale Prices.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

What does it take to make the Worlds Longest Kayak Chain?

So I was recently asked to do a fly over of the Buffalo River near Riverworks in Downtown Buffalo New York.


This was no ordinary fly over this was for a potential record breaking event!

Take a look at all the Kayaks!


This has been submitted to Guinness Book of Records for the Longest Kayak Chain! 


Here is some of the pics I took with my drone to help them capture the world record!


The City of Buffalo looks amazing from here!


And Buffalo Riverworks is amazing too!!


In the picture above is the group of photographers that used 3 drones, a GoPro and a Canon DLSR to capture as much of the event as possible! Special Thanks to Robert, Brian, Nate and Nick for working as a great team to capture this record breaking attempt! 




Here is my montage of footage in a short video! I hope you like it!
I am on YouTube so give me a like or subscribe!
THANKS!



Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Solar Eclipse 2017

Some of my pictures from the Solar Eclipse that happened on Monday August 21. In Buffalo only 71%  of the Moon covered the Sun. The first picture below captured that moment of 71%.





I brought my scopre with a powerful Solar Filter so many people got to see it up close and take pictures with their smartphones!



My favorite video of the Totality of the Eclipse!
Enjoy!


Friday, July 21, 2017

Average Sale Price since 2004 in WNY

This shows the Average Price of a home in WNY (Single Family / Condo Town home) over the last 13 years. What should be apparent is that the last 13 years the Average sale price rose almost $60,000 as of August 2017! Very impressive!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Buffalo Perspective - My New Company!

So I have been busy!! I know if you have read my blog you know I am always busy, but this has been a different busy. Between 2013-2016 I spent most time with family and with community groups growing the Buffalo Tech scene. I feel I did what I set out to do. But I was working with many entrepreneurs in Buffalo, but I was not, and I struggled with what I wanted to create as a business.

When I got my drone in November of 2016 I didn't think much of a business idea from it, after all I considered it more of a toy or a fun hobby. I went to the National Association of Realtors conference and met Steve Irwin the CEO of Autel, and he was on a panel that talked about Drone's in Real Estate.  

After learning lots about the drone, FAA rules and regulations, how to start a business and file the correct paperwork, I am now a proud owner of a business! 



A very simple concept, take aerial photography and videos using the drone. 

I was incorporated in April 2017 and since then, I have had lots of requests to do flyovers. From Boy Scouts doing a camporee, to Dragon Boat racing and of course Real Estate! Its been fun learning all the things I need to do along with the Part 107 sUAS Pilot license. 

I plan on blogging about that specific topic soon! 

But in the meantime check out some of my videos on my YouTube Channel and Subscribe if you like it!!


I have lots of cool videos that I have done and have learned a lot about film editing through trial and error, and from other creators on YouTube. 

Here are a few shots from my collection!


Patrick Kane's Lakeview NY Home - $3.2 Million listing


Rex Ryan's Orchard Park NY Home - $1.1. Million listing


St. Patricks Day Parade 2017 behind City Hall Buffalo NY


Dyngus Day Parade 2017 near Central Terminal


Hillview Elementary Color Run 2017


Downtown Buffalo at Sunrise!

Looking forward to the summer of new views of WNY!

Thanks for reading!!




Saturday, May 6, 2017

Buffalo Real Estate Market hits New Record in 2016

Well, if you have been watching or reading the news, Buffalo is doing great in many areas. That includes, manufacturing, entrepreneurship, medical advances, marketing and of course Real Estate. Our market has been strong in recent years but 2016 proved to be record breaking!
As you can see above, for the first time ever in our history we broke over 12,000 sales of Residential Homes and Condo and Townhouse combined. Almost $2 billion in total dollar volume. Even though the graph only goes back 10 years, I have reports that go back to 1988 and never before in the history of our records show any higher volumes recorded.
The next graph, shows 2 figures very important to the sale of a home and those are Days on Market (How long it takes to sell a home) and Average Sale Price. As you can see the Days on Market for the past 2 years is less than 60 days! And the Average sale price is at an all time high of $154,046! Your best investment is in a home in WNY.
This is great news if you are in the market to sell your home! And if you are thinking about buying, then the time is now, because our trends only show that our market is still going up so waiting will cost you more next year!!
Be sure to contact a Real Estate Broker or Salesperson to get all the up to the minute information, so they can help you sell your home at the correct value, or help you buy your dream home!
Thanks for reading!