Third Coast Aviation


Flight training offered by experienced Third Coast Aviation LLC ("TCA") professionals at historic Ellington Field ("EFD") - a winning combination! We're excited for you to join the ranks of our student pilots training with us, and eventually our TCA Student Association. Third Coast Aviation LLC ('TCA') provides flight training financing for individuals transitioning to an aviation career in conjunction with Meritize. TCA's financing options include a smooth entry into regional airline partner programs and ways to build hours bridging the gap between your commercial pilot license and the 1,500 flight hours required for an Airline Transport Pilot ('ATP') license. Through a recently signed agreement, TCA offers funding through its programs with Meritize.

Mission: We create safe and competent pilots, while providing a safe environment in our aircraft for further training.

Third Coast Aviation's cover photo

Ellington Airport EFD on a rainy day - only one jet in so far today. Work continues in the Third Coast maintenance hanger - digital engine instruments in a Piper Turbo Dakota, annual for a Piper Cherokee 140, ADS-B for a Cessna Turbo P210, and an annual for a Piper Seneca soon to join our training flight line.

Congratulations to Kyle Woodfill on his first student solo! Even Jon Disler was impressed with the army watching his first!

Third Coast Aviation is at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport with flight lessons with Jon Disler - looking forward to seeing Brand, Marissa, Kyle and Josh. Lunchtime always at Runway Cafe.

Clearing up completely with windows from 300 at 10 knots gusting to 15 (nice cross wind for working on landings). We only heard 1 person in the air over the area.

Here’s some pictures of the last Thursday Grilling event - this weekend the Wings over Houston event takes over Ellington Airport EFD, so no lessons or maintenance is ongoing but...

Remember the next Grilling Thursday on October 24 and this Saturday pot luck at hangar F/G - call Robert Boulanger for more information.

Look what just flew in on a ferry flight with Bob Burkett at the controls, David Flake and Jon Disler follow close behind in N9996U. You never know what may join the Third Coast flight line for multi-engine training. Jim Gardner and N19VS back online for multi-engine training - a new student will be taking his check-ride early next week.

Coming - a new Magnus non-LSA | Third Coast Aviation

Third Coast Aviation was excited to see this press release issued on August 29, 2019 - exciting news for another aircraft being introduced into the American general aviation market! Today, UAC (United Aircraft Corporation) and Aviation Engineering Zrt., subsidiary of Magnus Aircraft Zrt., have signed a cooperative agreement at the 14th International Aeronautical Exhibition, MAKS. Under the terms of contract, UAC has transferred the manufacturing and sales rights of the Il-103 type aircraft to Magnus Aircraft. [ 337 more words ] Third Coast Aviation was excited to see this press release issued on August 29, 2019 – exciting news for another…

#POTUS being here on Sunday means Marine 1 was here - love being here where it happens.

Weather will be dicey today but three flights already off - come and see us and why this is the place to train and have maintenance done.

Good morning from Ellington Airport EFD headquarters of Third Coast Aviation - BTW this is not our latest training aircraft, just a neighbor.

The current weather KEFD’s METAR is beautiful, although KLBX’s TAF looks like the showers will pop up later this afternoon. Drop by or call to schedule your lessons for the coming week.

Airmen Medical Certification | Third Coast Aviation

As you can guess, we have cancelled ground school and flight lessons due to weather (we don't want anyone to get stuck in high water at either Ellington Airport EFD or Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport).

We added Dr. Victor Hector V. Arellano of Total Medical And Urgent Care clinic to our Designated Medical Examiner's page ( - we highly recommend Dr. Arellano as he is a pilot as well. Third Coast Aviation provides information on FAA mandated airmen medical certification and provides resources for students and pilots.

TCA Maintenance is at Ellington Field!

David Flake is doing a great job as TCA Maintenance Manager

Third Coast Aviation was surprised when Ken Cameron ( stopped in - he will be flying with us as well as having our maintenance division working on his Cozy ( "A veteran of three space flights, Cameron has logged over 561 hours in space. He served as Pilot on STS-37 (April 5–11, 1991), and was the spacecraft commander on STS-56 (April 9–17, 1993) and STS-74 (November 12–20, 1995)." (

Lessons happening here at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport with Jon Disler and Brandon Gee. Jeff Bilyeu, Amy and Emily Childress Fowler providing an awesome fare at their event.

Flying in winds calm, perfect day for a $100 hamburger at Runway Cafe. Come see Pat Brown and Woodstock (see it in the pictures).

September 2019 TCA Update | Third Coast Aviation

Welcome to September 2019. For our flight students there have been many changes at Third Coast Aviation in the last month… Our Flight Line Our flight line has undergone some changes and upgrades: “Stars & Stripes” N9996U (Grumman Cheetah) is back on our flight line with a new engine. The Garmin 430 is now a 430W with updated database. [ 377 more words ] Third Coast Aviation provides an update for September 2019, including our new TCA Maintenance capability, upcoming Magnus Fusion 212 and others.

Wheels up at Ellington Airport EFD at 9 AM, down to Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport for a day of training - winds at 010 @ 6 (perfect weather). Lessons with Brian and Curtis and lunch at Runway Cafe with Brandon Gee and Marissa while Jon Disler is in the air (sorry Jon, we saved some M&M’s for you.

Meanwhile, back at KEFD two annuals are going on with TCA Maintenace and David Flake, including Jim Gardner with his Piper Twin Comanche finishing up!!! Multi-engine flights to resume September 15...

Historical relevance - we found this Ellington Airport EFD ramp truck outside our hangar this morning, the NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Super Guppy going by, Jon Disler heading off for a flight with Rodney Jones, and Jim Gardner working on his Piper Twin Comanche’s annual with our very own David Flake. Just another day at Third Coast Aviation!

If you can find historical pictures of the Guppy or the ramp truck, post those - I found this very same truck in an Apollo picture here...

We’d like to say hello to a new RTAG student James Foley, who started an accelerated course to transition from a commercial rotorcraft pilot to a fixed wing commercial pilot on his way to an ATP license!

Today we’re down training at our office at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport - Brian, Curtis, and Brandon Gee training today. Come have lunch with us at the Runway Cafe and Ken Briden.

Weather on the way from Ellington Airport EFD to KLBX was perfect - no wind at all. As you can see from the pictures, there were showers in the area but very isolated.

Stars & Stripes (N9996U) had Master /Alternator switch issues yesterday, but having our newly minted commercial pilot and A&P stationed near Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport allows us to have an A&P in the field in 15 minutes! Within 30 minutes we were ready to go!!!!! Ask us about new maintenance capability if you own an aircraft.

While we waited at the Runway Cafe, we had a number of our students join Jon Disler. Later, sitting on taxiway D at Runway 17L waiting for a WWII B17 taking off ( back at Ellington Airport EFD) is a great way to end the day. Just able to catch it on the way around.

Saturday’s at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport - what a perfect morning! Winds calm, clouds with 2,000’ base with a new student today - Jon Disler instructing a new student pilot on the inspection.

If you haven’t viewed Sporty’s “understanding pilot slang” yet, it’s a must view / listen - “...sphincter clamping force...” had us on the floor (

Don’t forget the Fly In at KBMT.

Where is Waldo the Apache...

Lots of military activity today at Ellington Airport EFD - what a place to train! Jon Disler up in the air with a student while an Apache is in its pattern (see it at the very top of the picture).

Dodging weather this week has been fun! Two of our multi-engine students taking check rides had those rescheduled due to thunderstorms in the area.

Lots of military activity today at Ellington Airport EFD - what a place to train! Jon Disler up in the air with a student while an Apache is in its pattern (see it at the very top of the picture).

Dodging weather this week has been fun! Two of our multi-engine students taking check rides had those rescheduled due to thunderstorms in the area.

We’re at our offices Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport today with classes and discussions with rusty pilots (Pat Brown, I e for one who used to own a Grumman Tiger and will be brushing off the cobwebs next week). We just enjoyed lunch at Runway Cafe here at KLBX - not a soul flew in today.

Weather report - calm winds, turbulence due to the heat but all in all, perfect! Rain showers later are forecasted but Jon Disler doesn’t see it affecting flights.

Lone Star Flight Museum Aviation Exploring is recruiting for their Aviation Program – an after-school career education program for young men and women ages 14-18 who are interested in learning about the field of Aviation as a career.
Select one of our upcoming Open House dates for more details & information:

Saturday, August 10, 2019, 10:00 AM- 12:00 PM
Saturday, September 14, 2019, 10 AM- 12:00 PM

Contact Michelle Phillips at 713-689-9635 [email protected] or
[email protected] for more information.

Interesting stuff......

This Day in History: After his recent record setting around the world flight, Howard Hughes returns to his hometown for a city wide party. At a news conference at the Houston Municipal Airport, it was announced that its name would henceforth be "Howard Hughes Airport".

Following his arrival and motorcade to the Rice Hotel, Hughes was greeted by large crowds and received a ticker tape parade. That night he was the guest of honor at a large award dinner where he receive the key to the city from Mayor Holcombe.

In gratitude, Hughes would fund the construction of a control tower at the new Howard Hughes Airport. When it opened in September it became one of the very few control towers west of the Mississippi!

Taking off from KEFD encountered some low hanging clouds to dodge at 700’ AGL, but the trip was serene in “Racer” N26256. Flight lessons taking place all day at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport and Ellington Airport EFD - come out and see us!

Something different - flight training at KLBX with Jon Disler with N26255 Grumman Cheetah. N194SC is in the hangar this week, and for those of you awaiting “Stars & Stripes” N9996U, it’s new engine is on and will have its first run up today (back on the flight line on Monday). Who wants the first official training flight on N9996U with its new engine?

Triple C Tools LLC GearWrench

Chris Maldonado came by Third Coast Aviation yesterday to see David Flake and Ken Briden - what an awesome mobile tool solution! We look forward to seeing Chris every couple of weeks...

Full line of name brand specialty automotive tools and equipment.

Lone Star Flight Museum

T-MINUS 5 DAYS until the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing! On this day in 1969, the Apollo 11 crew woke up around 4 a.m. and began preparing for their flight...they had a 9:32 a.m. rocket to catch.

Did you know Ellington Field was the site of many preparations and training drills for the Apollo program?

To help astronauts practice simulated moon landings, NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration developed the Lunar Landing Training Vehicle (LLTV). The LLTV and its predecessor, the Lunar Landing Research Vehicle, were used for training at Ellington Air Force Base. In this picture from 1969, Neil Armstrong is sitting in the LLTV at Ellington.

Great morning at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport with Brian Melass and Jon Disler.

A great day with Pat Brown of AOPA working on the flight training business and improving customer service. Thanks Jay and Dana for hosting us!

Take a look at our new engine for N9996U - t minus two weeks and counting... thanks David Flake, our new Maintenance Manager.

Houston takes flight at Paris Air Show just in time for Space City Month​

Exciting stuff! As we move closer to the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 in mid-July, eyes around the world are turning to the United States and to Houston's NASA Johnson Space Center in celebration of the historic mission that first brought mankind to the moon. Thanks to that unprecedented interest, Houston was aske

Wishing everyone a happy and safe 4th of July.
Happy Independence Day America!

Jon Disler and Robert C. Rhodes flying to the Texas City Dike, which Robert Boulanger and Robert went crabbing on Sunday.

Third Coast Aviation is flying today out of Ellington Airport EFD, but not Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport - dodging thunder showers and options abound!


Congratulations to our favorite Houston Firefighter, Rodney Jones on his first solo!! We are proud of you, fly high, Rodney!
Jon Disler


Rainy days and tall plane tales!
Pilots and students passing the rainy afternoon at the TCA offices at Ellington Field.
Robert C. Rhodes, Robert Boulanger, Jim Gardner, Ohiana Negrete, Wendy Lou Williamson Bryant


We loved meeting you guys!

Steve had a great time on the discovery flight! Excellent instructor and enjoyed a little flying himself

Houston Airport System to break ground on Houston Spaceport project - Houston Business Journal The first phase of construction will include streets, water and other utilities for the Houston Spaceport.

Third Coast Aviation with "Sexy Chick" down at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport for a day of classes. Brandon Gee, Marissa Arevalo and others schedule for today. Haze in the air with low ceilings - lots of cross country planning and pattern work with Jon Disler

Lots of action at our Ellington Airport EFD headquarters as well, with N26256 up and running a full schedule today. And for all of you N9996U fans, our maintenance group has N9996U back at Ellington for a planned engine replacement early July (Yay). Call Wendy Lou Williamson Bryant to get on the schedule now - especially our multi-engine training with Jim Gardner, who has a new student signing up today!

Going over details before Michael Barry’s cross country flight this morning. Beautiful weather today at KEFD. Come see us!

Flight lessons starting early at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport, with wheels up at 7 AM with Jon Disler. We were taxiing around with this DOW Bombardier Regional Jet CRJ-700 (tail number N870DC - before it took off for Michigan.

Come see us until 5 PM CST today at our KLBX or Ellington Airport EFD headquarters locations - our 1977 Grumman Cheetah N26256 is flying IFR, stopping by Temple Avionics for a quick co-pilot mid check. We’re also up in the air with our Piper Twin Comanche for multi-engine training all this week - thanks to Jim Gardner.

ForeFlight Web

High winds right down the runway 17R.

Ellington Airport EFD

Exciting things are happening here!

Groundbreaking for Phase 1 of the Houston Spaceport development at Ellington Airport is scheduled for June 28! #HoustonSpaceport

Congratulations to our youngest student, Nathan Watters on your first solo!! We are so proud of you! Fly high, Nathan!


N26256 coming back on the flight line today, with a new paint job and working avionics stack - it’ll be on the flight line till Tuesday when it goes into Temple Avionics to clean up the dash and complete a few avionics changes. Thanks to Michael Barry for some troubleshooting yesterday with Jonathan Johnson.

Today we’re also down at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport all day (thanks Mr. Ou for the awesome hamburgers at Runway Cafe). We are starting a three day a week schedule at Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport - Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.

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Videos (show all)

TCA Maintenance is at Ellington Field!
A new IFR student
Tony Boulanger practicing Touch and go




11200 Blume Avenue
Houston, TX

Opening Hours

Monday 08:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 08:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 08:00 - 17:00
Thursday 08:00 - 17:00
Friday 08:00 - 17:00
Saturday 08:00 - 17:00
Sunday 08:00 - 17:00
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