I postponed my instrument checkride yesterday.
Though I have the number of required hours, I don’t feel ready to take the checkride. It’s a hard thing to admit: not being ready, but it’s an important part of being a good pilot. I don’t want to take a checkride that I’m not prepared for any more than I want to take a flight that I am not certain will have a good outcome. It’s just not worth it.
I’m scheduled to fly twice more with my instructor in preparation for the exam. The struggles so far haven’t been technical, they’re more mental: most actual instrument flights I’ll take will involve trips longer than 30 minutes, but I have less than 15 to transition from the departure environment to the arrival environment on my checkride. Getting behind the airplane is a fatal error in instrument flying, and not making the transition fast enough is a huge reason why I struggle to then complete the required tasks.
To my way of thinking, I expect I’ll be ready to take my checkride sometime in the next week. I’m certainly not hours-deficient, I just need to conquer the last few hills and go take the thing. With any luck, I’ll meet my goal of being an instrument pilot by the end of 2012.