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Army Fixed Wing?

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Well-known member
Jan 26, 2002
How do you get a job flying Army fixed wing aircraft? Can you join and get a flight slot? Also, do you have to be an officer or can you be a warrent officer?
First off, it's Warrant Officer with an "a", not with an "e".

I believe it used to be possible quite a few years back to get a fixed wing flight slot in the Army off the street, but that is no longer the case. The Army's flight school is completely rotary wing based, and it typically takes several years' experience as a rated Army rotary wing aviator to get a highly coveted Fixed Wing Multiengine Course slot. Even then, you're required to alternate between fixed wing and rotary wing utilization tours.

Bottom line... if you want to fly fixed wing and fixed wing only, the Army's not the place for you.

- Juris
In the Army National Guard, there is a fixed wing flight detachment at each state headquarters. That's primarily for the use of the adjutant genereal. There are other fixed wing assets in the National Guard, but those are few compared to rotary wing operations. I have seen fixed wing operations in the Army Reserve and know some people who flew there.

Fly safe!
armyjets said:
And although it does rarely happen, I don't know any fixed wing aviator who has had to go back to the rotary side of the house against his wishes. The fixed wing side of the Army is too short of pilots to allow it's folks to move back to the RW side. For example, my last assignment had 4 Citation 560's, and 11 King Air's, all VIP operations. I think the total number of folks that we had to fly them was about 24 guys. I flew over 1000 hours my last year because of the shortage. I guess if you were an AH-64 guy you might be asked to go back to fly RW.

Just curious... the perception from what I've seen in Army Aviation is that the fixed wing course is very difficult to get. If the fixed wing units are so short, why do people think the FW course is impossible to get? Requirements? Because the RW units are even shorter on pilots?

As for what I posted about alternating fixed and rotary wing tours, that came off of one of the PERSCOM career manager web pages. I'm not sure which one, but I'm sure I read it. If you've been there and done that, I'll take your word for it then!


- Juris
the only time i've ever seen a guy going straight into fixed-wing from the street is with the commissioned guys. they still had to go to rotary wing tng and then just lucked out and got selected for fixed wing. also, to be honest, i've only seen this happen to one guy.

i see this is exactly what armyjets wrote...sorry about that!!!

i've never heard of alternating fixed wing/rotary wing assignments. however, i have seen guys that were not given a utilization tour upon completion of the fixed-wing course, but did get one later on down the road. primarily apache drivers.

the fw mgt policy has always been a mystery...clearly they are short of pilots, but don't really seem to do a lot about. perhaps it is related to the shortage of helo pilots, or a money issue, i don't know. the results for the latest fw selection board just came out, and they did pick up a lot more guys then in previous years, somewhere over 50. all of them mostly senior guys, and the obligation is for five years, so if you had hopes of getting some FW time and punching out for the airlines you can pretty much forget it...
Being a 64 driver I couldn't agree more with the previous posts. The 64 community has been so short for so long, the doors are more or less closed to special ops and fixed wing. (With very few exceptions). Ironically this has the opposite affect of sending guys packing. In other words, guys (like me) get tired of being deployed all of the time, look for another avenue such as fixed wing or special ops and....Low and behold the doors are closed. So guess what, more 64 guys leave.

The only hope to guarantee a fixed wing job is if you get a fixed wing guard/reserve unit to sponsor your flight school slot. You would still go to IERW (Rotory Wing Flight School) followed by the fixed wing course.. Good luck on that one, as all units I've talked to are all full up.
I agree. I got the FW course after I left active then spent some years in TX flying the 60. THEN just happened to meet someone from another state who happend to be short a FW pilot. I managed to talk them into giving me the short course. I do not know of anyone who was forced back to RW. The states are stingy of the dets. They would not give up anyone back to RW. This Kuwait deal was hard enough to get as it was. They tried the "stop loss" thing on me till I reminded them I was leaving part time Guard to go FULL TIME ACTIVE". They eventually saw the light. So I am living it up in a sand box.
Is it possible for a WO to fly fixed wing in the army?

"Is it possible for a WO to fly fixed wing in the army?"

YES! But good luck getting it. Its a tough nut to crack from everyone I have talked to.
I am a CW3 in the Army and I fly a C12 (BE20) but you do have to be in the right place and the right time. Most flying RW/FW in the Army is flown by Warrants.

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