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jws717

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I am currently a F/O for a regional airline, i am 21 have the 4 year degree and considering the change. Any one know what type of training i would undergo in the airforce? i know there is OCS and then what after that? How long untill i am flying again? and has anyone done this before? would any of you airforce guys leave an airline if that was your current gig? thanks guys
 

fastbird

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Do want a 20 year USAF career? It'll require visiting an OFFICER recruiter and getting scheduled to take the AFOQT then if you score high enough the process will begin. Going Active requires commiting to 10 freaking years of a training contract! By then, you are half way to retirement and will have a serious decision to make BUT it is a guaranteed retirement check which you don't have to worry about the company underfunding or turning over to PBGT.

Try a Guard or Reserve unit, that takes NETWORKING skill but there are units out there looking for "baby pilots." A good source for that is baseops.net and they have all the info you need to get started.

As for QOL, how does being on the road 200 days a year sound....pretty much like life at the airline. Then, how about living in a tent with Camel Spiders and scorpions? It's not bad as long as you don't mind additional duties outside of "just driving airplanes" and can keep your sense of humor when you get that crap assignment to BFE.

It's all what you make of it. My father-in-law retired after 23 years flying fighter jets (finished up with the RF-4C). I did it for a brief stint and went the reserve route after the big RIF of the 1990's.
 

pkober

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I would try the Guard. I am a "Guard Baby", meaning I was hired by the Guard and the only thing I know is the Guard. The fact that you are an airline pilot already is awesome. While in training you will keep your senority number.

To get into the Guard you will need to contact every unit individually. Before the BRAC most units would have at least 1 pilot slot a year. After BRAC it may not be so easy. The Gaurd, and Reserves, are getting it without vasaline. As result some units are closing, some unit are going from 12 to 8 airplanes. In other words there are going to be qualified Guard pilots looking for work. Hopefully, Guard will take care of Guard first. That being said, there will still be a need for 2LT's for pilot training, just probably a smaller amount.

From the start of the process of applying for a Guard Pilot slot until I was fully qualified on the C-130, it took about 4 years. Your results may vary.

PM me if you are interested in when my unit is holding Pilot Selections Boards.

You are in a good position, 21 years old with quality flying experience. Just keep trying and you will get a slot.

Good Luck.

CLAMBAKE
 

Mamma

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I just heard from one of our new guys that the committment has gone back down to 8 years for UPT. SO, 1 yr of UPT and 8 more for payment if you go active duty. I recommend the guard/reserves if you can get it! Keep your eyes out for new C-17 reserve units coming to Anchorage and Dover...they might be hiring a few more than normal off the street to get their numbers.
 

viper548

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There's a reserve C-17 unit at Travis. I just interviewed today, and there was at least one guy from off the street. The only problem with being 21 and off the street is that you will be last in line to get a slot because you're so young. The order of priority is typically

Legacy
Internal applicant (Loadmaster, Boomer, etc)
Prior service
Age Critical off the street
Young off the street
 

jws717

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Thanks alot for all the info, i was under the impression that all guard positions went to former active duty guys. But i will realy consider this as an option.
 

viper548

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Most guard/reserve units send 1 or 2 people a year to UPT. The rest of the guys come from AD or other units.
 

dustydog

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Are you dead set on the Air Force? If you want a part time gig after training, the Guard or AF Reserve is probably your best option. If you are looking for an active duty career, don't forget about the Navy, Marines or Coast Guard. I'm not sure on the current hiring posture but currently the AD commitment is 8 years after winging. Keep in mind that they fly a lot of helo's and if that is not your cup of tea then don't apply. It's a good place to go if you wany to put up with the military BS. You should want to be an officer first and a pilot second if you apply to the regular side. The Guard and the Reserve are better to stay in the cockpit for most of your career if you can find a unit to sponser you. Good luck and the only way to find out is to apply. The stablity is definately better than the airlines, besides the deployments.
 

dtfl

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All guard and reserve units hire new blood. We have to.
As for the above post about a 20 yr career. You dont have to want to stay in 20 yrs. You can get out after your 8 yr commitment is up. (You will have to watch the PCS, and extra commitments you might sign so you do get out at 8)
Reserves and Guard units require a commitment also - to the guard or reserves. The unit ask for a commitment too - but I have seen folks get sponsored for UPT, then move after 3-4 years. If you bust your butt and do a good job, most won't hold it against you as you are trying to better your career or improve QOL. Some might.
Guard and reserve units aren't gone 200 days a year. 90% of the units out there have been mobilized and demobilized already. Until the Pres goes before Congress and gets the authorization to sign another mobilization - they won't be mobilized again. (Folks lets not start a tanget on this topic. This info is from AFRPC) Meaning - no 200 days in the desert, unless you volunteer. In the foreseeable future units will be deploying..and they will build a few volunteer crews. The Guard and Reserve lessen the pain by having more crews go for 30-45 days vs Active Duty - having 2 or so crews go for 90-120.
Good luck.
 

resqav8r

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Guard not gone 200 days out of the year ... not unless your LDHD. My average since joining the ANG in 2001 has been 280days TDY per year. Not always in theater, but the demand on our time is out there. Utilization depends on mission and not all airframes are alike, so when you pick a unit be ready to meet that unit's needs and not your own. That's hopefully what the boards are looking for, a guy that's willing to DO what it takes ... not one willing to SAY what the board wants to hear. that's my 2cents.
 

pkober

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Right now the ANG is still having people complete their 2 year title 10 activation. I finished my 2 years, dude's in my unit who have only finished a year are being called back to finish their two years. In the C-130, slick C-130, community the average sandbox rotation is 60 days.

If you are a junior guy without a job, or furloughed, this is a time to get a ton of days and stay employed. The downside is that you'll be in the desert having some tool lecture you about disco-belts.

Either way, when you come off your title 10 activation, it becomes your hobby again.

Good luck.

CLAMBAKE
 
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GasPasser

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Go Guard

The ANG baby route is the way to go. I took that road and am very glad I did. USAFR is probably just as good but I don't know how many UPT slots they get. ANG units get 1-2 UPT slots a year. Viper548 has the order of priority in hiring correct. From what I hear at my unit the quality of off-the street candidates has not been that strong....in other words the selection board has not been very impressed with the quality of the candidates. I'd recommend getting professional interview prep just like you would for an airline job. I highly recommend EmeraldCoast (Albie15).



I think the time away from home varies by MWS (Major Weapon System). In fixed wing I think the C-17 is going to have the most activations and days TDY, followed by J-STARS, then C-130's & C-5's. Tankers follow, then the pointy nosed airplanes are away from home the least (just a guess, I don’t really know). My KC-135 unit was activated for Kosovo (only 1-mo.), OEF (9 mos. of a 1-yr activation), and OIF (4 mos. of a 1-yr activation). We were never away from home for more than a 60-day tour. We try to do most of our TDYs in rotations and with volunteers. It’s not often you're doing something without volunteering for it. I’d say a traditional part-timer in the -135 like me has averaged less than 60 days TDY/yr over the past 10 years, maybe 75 days/yr average in the last 5 years. Some do more, some less. Full timers tend to do more because that’s their job and upper management leans on them. Usually part-timers are given 1st dibs on trips. Bumming (troth-feeding) is also an option if you don’t have a regular job or if you get furloughed. I’ve even seen guard baby bums become ANG full-timers.



I can say from 1st hand experience, the QOL is good for a guard baby part-timer in the -135. While there is a number of units loosing -135’s (some or all) and there will be ANG pilots looking for work, there is still plenty of opportunities if you are willing to relocate. Some old hats will not be willing to move and units will still be getting 1-2 UPT slots a year.

A 4-yr college degree is required, and you'll have to pass an initial USAF flight physical. Flight experience helps in the selection process, the more the better.



Good luck to you.
 
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viper548

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The interview is tough. A lot of HR questions with a couple tech ones thrown in. My interview panel had 4 officers with all of them asking questions. I thought it was harder than my interview at SkyWest.
 

jws717

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thanks alot once again everyone, alot of good ideas
 
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