Moore County Composite Squadron
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CAP Pilot

How to become a CAP pilot

If you are 18 years and older, a CAP member, and have more than 175 hours as pilot in command, you could be a valued asset to the organization by becoming a Search and Rescue Mission Pilot Trainee.  The first step is becoming a CAP Pilotand earning your wings.

If you are not a pilot, or if you are a pilot with less than 175 hours of pilot-in-command time, consider also becoming a Mission Observer.

Below is a systematic list of instructions explaining how to become a pilot in Civil Air Patrol.

We have an aircraft based at OAK: a 2012 Cessna 182T.  There is also a 182R in RHV, and a 182 G-1000 in CCR and PAO.  You need an initial checkout in this aircraft and each type you want to fly in CAP.  You must complete Level 1 Orientation, Cadet Protection and OpSec prior to becoming a CAP Pilot.


1.  Obtain your CAP ID card and your CAP uniform

2.  As a basic qualification, you must be an FAA licensed Private Pilot or above, hold a current class 3 medical certificate and be current to carry passengers.

3.  Your logbook must contain a current flight review, in accordance with FAR 61.56. Search for 61.56.

Study this material

  • CAPR 70-1, CAP Flight Management.
  • CAPP 52-7, Cadet Orientation Flight Syllabus, if you wish to become a Cadet Orientation Pilot (requires at least 200 hours PIC). 
  • If you are not familiar with the requirements of the Airman Certification Standards (ACS), purchase a copy from any pilot shop or download it free from the FAA.
  • If you're transitioning to High Performance and/or Constant Speed Propellers, these documents might be useful: High Performance Aircraft CheckoutTransition to Complex Airplanes and Constant Speed Propeller Basics.
  • Purchase a POH or search the web for a copy - Read the POH and know the Cessna 182’s Speeds, Emergency Procedures Bold Face items, and Systems.
  • CAP Radio - Technisonic TDFM-136 (generally found in the 182T G1000 aircraft)
    Download the Quick Reference Guide.
    You should know the following: How to turn on the Radio, Configure the audio panel to use it, explain the how the audio panel works, establish communications with the radio, and know what the two or three position toggle switch does. Practice with the TDFM-136 Simulator.
  • For the Round Dial aircraft, Download the GX-55 Deluxe simulator:
  • Review these functions on the Simulator: GX-55 Reference guides -   As a minimum know: Direct To Waypoints, Display information about Waypoints, and use of the MAP Page.
  • CAP Radio – NAT NPX-138 (generally found in the 182R Round Dial aircraft)
    Download the following:
    You should know the following: How to turn on the Radio, Configure the audio panel to use it, explain the how the audio panel works, establish communications with the radio, and know what the two or three position toggle switch does.

G-1000 Form 5

  • You may complete your Form 5 in the G1000, or a round dial Cessna 182.
  • Our Aircrew page has some useful links for G1000 resources.

Complete these Tests

  • For an initial or annual CAPF 5 flight check, take and pass the current online CAP Form 5 Annual Examination–Powered.   This is a 21-question, open book test that can be found on eServices-> CAP Utilities (left side menu) -> CAP On-line Courses and Exams-> Select Quiz.  You must complete it not more than 90 days before your flight check.  Print the completion certificate and bring it with you to the flight check.  This examination is not required if you have a current CAPF 5 and are simply adding a new aircraft qualification.
  • If you are or wish to become a Cadet Orientation Pilot, also take and pass the current online Orientation Pilot Exam - Powered, either with or without ROTC. This is also an open-book test and can be found by following the link above. Print the completion certificate and bring it with you to the flight check.

Complete these Documents

  • Complete an Airplane Questionnaire F5Q-A in original ink, for the aircraft to be used.
  • Download and print two copies of the CAP Form 5.  Fill in all of the top boxes except the Additional CAP Endorsements section.  If you anticipate flying a CAP aircraft in IMC then check the Instrument box and be prepared to demonstrate instrument proficiency. If you have 200+ hours PIC time, then check the Cadet Orientation Pilot box so you can fly cadets on Orientation Flights.

Prepare for the Flight Evaluation

  • Your CAPF 5 oral evaluation will be based mainly on the following regulations, so you should refresh your knowledge of them before the flight check.
    • Parts 61 and 91 of the Federal Aviation Regulations.
    • Aeronautical Information Manual.
    • CAPR 70-1, CAP Flight Management.
    • CAPP 52-7, Cadet Orientation Flight Syllabus, if you wish to become a Cadet Orientation Pilot (requires at least 200 hours PIC).
    • It is recommended that you take the short CAPF 5 On-line Course:
    • It is recommended that you review the online G1000 material.  Log on to e-Services.  Select the G1000 Study Material and review the material on that page.
    • Review the CAPF 5, Attachment 5 to CAPR 60-1, and the current FAA Private Pilot ACS for the class of airplane to be used. If you are instrument rated and plan to seek instrument privileges in CAP aircraft, you should also review the current FAA Instrument Rating ACS. These documents will tell you how the flight check will be performed and what maneuvers you may be required to demonstrate. If you are not sure how to perform a maneuver, consult a publication such as the FAA’s Airplane Flying Handbook or Flight Training Handbook, Gleim’s Private Pilot Flight Maneuvers, or ASA’s Visualized Flight Maneuvers for High-Wing Aircraft.
    • Review the Emergency Procedures section of the checklists found in the POH.
    • Review the presentation below titled Form 5 Preparation
    • Form 5 Preparation


  • eServices validation:  Enter in all of your FAA Pilot qualifications using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->FAA Requirements links.  Then use the link->Checkride/Questionnaires for entering questionnaire and checkride information.  
  • Upload the scanned copies of the FAA Documents documents using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->Pilot->FAA Questionnaires->View/Upload Documents->Pilot link and eMail the Commander to let him know that they are awaiting validation.  This must be done before you fly.

Form 5 Preparation Flights (Optional)

  • Find and schedule a familiarization/preparation flight with a California Wing Instructor Pilot (IP). To find an IP ask the Squadron Operations Officer. You will need to know systems, emergency procedures, weight & balance, flight release, etc. Also, familiarize yourself with the CAP Aircraft Information File that is kept in the plane. CAP corporate planes are used for 99% of our flying.  Ensure your proficiency level meets at least the Private Pilot ACS.
  • Have your IP get a flight release since the FRO will only “release” the PIC. However, you need to know the procedure so have your IP go over it with you.
  • Know where the aircraft is and how to get into the hangar. Your IP may have to show you the first time.
  • Get to the aircraft early and use the POH and other on-board documents to fill out the Airplane Questionnaire. Get your IP to check it with you for correctness. 
  • Make sure your IP goes over the Aircraft Information File with you so you understand what it contains and how to determine Airworthiness of the aircraft. Make sure he goes over what paperwork entries are required for each flight.
  • Payment: Pay the fuel bill at Kaiser Air.

Schedule your Form 5

  • Find and schedule a Form 5 with a  California Wing Check Pilots (CP). To find an IP ask the Squadron Operations Officer.
  • Since this is your first CAP Form 5 Flight Evaluation, your CP will have to get the flight release, but he will question you on the proper procedure during the oral portion of your exam.

To Bring to the Form 5

  • Bring the following items with you to the flight check:
    • FAR/AIM.
    • POH, AFM or Information Manual for the aircraft being used.
    • Copy of the current CAPR 60-1 & Wing supplement.
    • Copy of CAPP 52-7 & Wing supplement, if applicable.
    • Completion certificate from CAPR 60-1 Form 5 annual examination.
    • Completion certificate from Cadet Orientation Pilot Quiz, if applicable.
    • CAP Form 5 with top portion filled out.
    • Aircraft weight and balance calculation using the form found on this site, the Empty Weight and Moment Arm from the actual POH, and ask the Check Pilot their weight, 
    • Pilot certificate.
    • Current medical certificate.
    • Pilot logbook (to prove currency).
    • Your CAP ID.
    • Headset.
    • Current Sectional and Terminal Area Chart for the local area (may be electronic).
    • Current Airport/Facility Directory for the local area (may be electronic).
    • Current instrument low-level enroute and approach charts for the local area (instrument pilots only and may be electronic).
    • View-limiting device (whether or not you are instrument rated).
    • An invoice for the aircraft hourly rate will be sent to you by CAWG
    • Credit card to pay for fuel.

Aircrew Uniform

  • Wear a Nomex Flight Suit and black boots with the appropriate badges and name tag.  For detailed purchase and wear instructions, click Here.

Pass the oral exam and the Flight Evaluation

  • Be prepared, relax and have a successful Flight Evaluation  (Remember that the CP is only there to evaluate your flying skills, this is NOT an instructional session.
  • Payment: leave a check in the aircraft for the flight time and pay the fuel bill at the FBO.

Post Form 5

  • Remember, you are not yet a CAP Pilot, and cannot act as PIC in CAP aircraft, until the SQ188 Commander has copies of all your paperwork, validated all of your pilot qualifications and you are approved as a CAP VFR Pilot in e-services. Once this is all done, you can then act as PIC and can wear the CAP Pilot aeronautical rating (wings).  
  • Go to eServices > My Operations Qualifications > Checkride/Questionnaires > Airplane to enter the initial Form 5 and questionnaire information.  See below for specific instructions:  
    • Enter the Questionnaire information using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->Pilot-> Checkride/Questionnaires->Airplane->Questionnaires by entering the questionnaire date and type. 
    • Upload the scanned copies of the CAPF 5 using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->Pilot-> Checkride/Questionnaires->Airplane->View/Upload Documents->Pilot link.
    • Enter your initial Form 5 using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->Pilot-> Checkride/Questionnaires->Aircraft->Add Initial Form 5 link and enter Initial Date and Initial Aircraft Type.
    • eMail the Commander for validation
    • The Group and Wing Director of Standard and Evaluation (DOV) will need to approve your rating, before you fly again.
    • Confirm that your CAP Pilot rating has been approved using eServices->My Operations Qualifications->Pilot->CAP Ratings->Pilot Rating is checked off.  To see more pilot qualifications details check on View Qualifications.
  • When you have completed your Form 5 Flight Evaluation and all of your information has been validated you will then able to be released to fly CAP aircraft. All flights are required to be entered into the Web Information Reporting System (WMIRS). You will need to obtain a user ID and Password to gain access. Once you have access, you may log on and review the WMIRS Instructions which will detail how to enter the information on your flights. WMIRS can be accessed at (

Mission Pilot

Wings Credit

All CAP members wishing to participate in the Wings Program, whether pilots or not, must update their account information or register for the program at To allow the two databases to match your identity, CAP members will have to enter and save their CAP ID numbers in “Account Preferences” under the tab labeled “Other”.

Login to FAASTeam website at

  • In the uper left lick on Activities, Courses, Seminars & Webinars, then Activities
  • In the Search Activities section, enter CAPF 5 in the Search Box, click the Flight Activities checkbox, the Program: Wings checkbox and select the Perform Search button
  • Choose the required CAP activity
  • Click Request Credit
  • Enter the date of the checkride, and select the check pilot using any of the methods shown.
  • Click Submit for Validation
  • You and the check pilot will both receive an email showing you submitted. Once the check pilot validates the checkride, you'll get an email confirming the credit.
  • After that, click on Pilots, then My Wings. It should show what you are missing for completion of the current phase for each Wings level and offer suggestions on items that will complete the level. Completion of any level lets you print a certificate and a logbook insert.
  • Once, a Wings Program accredited activity is completed, safety education credit will be automatically uploaded into eServices. Additionally, for rated pilots, Biennial Flight Reviews will be automatically uploaded into Ops Quals. 
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