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Ifs

Twasilew

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Just curious how the IFS program is running these days. Is the Air Force now sending every UPT candidate through, including guard and reserve guys who may already have a PPL and several hundred hours of flying time?
 

frog_flyer

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All Reservists will be going through as of August, and I believe all ANG folks already have to.

I have 300 hours, but I'm happy to take the 6 weeks of orders!
 

Twasilew

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Wow, I know a guy that just picked up a UPT slot who has about 2000 hours. What a waste of taxpayer money to teach him to fly a Diamond.
 

SIG600

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I dump more gas on a single flight then he'll spend on katana time. You haven't seen anything yet.
 

Twasilew

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You may have dumped plenty, but your sortie was still fulfilling some type of purpose. You've missed my point completely.

I've seen plenty of government waste to the point where it is sickening. In this economy, every little bit counts. Eventually, this war will end, and so will our funding.

I wonder what Doss Aviation charges the American taxpayer to teach a 2000 hour airline pilot how to do turns around a point...or better yet stand up EP's. Totally ridiculous, that money could be spent much better elsewhere.
 

AlbieF15

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In fact, if this guy is ID'd as someone who can't learn to fly the "standard" way or to relearn and adapt to military training, he could easily be removed from training.

I agree that if it was just stalls and landings that they were training, it would be a waste. But this is also a way to find how a person handles a standup, deals with being part of a class, and takes instruction from others. I'd say its 99% he will do very well at all the above, but if they eliminate ONE person who does not they probably have saved the cost of the program.

I had a CFII when I went to UPT, one guy had 2000 hours of learjet time, and another guy was an Army helicopter pilot. We each did great in tweets, but also both know to STFU and listen and do what we were told to do. Although I never saw it, I've heard horror stories of guys showing up unable to adapt to the rigors of the military style training despite tons of expereince in other areas.

Just my two cents...
 

Twasilew

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I see your points. It's my opinion that seeing how a person handles standup (or stressful situations), being part of a team, and taking instruction can be weeded out at OTS, AMS, ROTC...etc. Hell, even a UPT board. I'd be curious to know what the IFS washout rate is? I'd hate to be that guy! As a Kitana Instructor, you'd have to have some huge balls to wash out a guy with thousands of hours. I just don't see it happening. I could be wrong.

I think you could scrap the whole program, send guys to the local FBO for 30 hours of straight and level flight and take-offs and landings, and still get very close to the same result. Some will do well in UPT, some will wash.

Anyone can fly a single engine piston within 30 hours of instruction. Not everyone can pull G's, do acro, fly form and deal with 12 tweets in the pattern at once. You're not going to screen for that at IFS.
 

frog_flyer

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I'm gonna back up Albie on this one. I've heard that they try to put the haze on you pretty well to see how you can handle pressure.

Like I said earlier, I'll just happy to get paid for the weeks I'll be there and to get the flight time.


Speaking of weeding "one guy out," whatever happened to the guy that crashed the diamond a few months ago?
 

SIG600

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You may have dumped plenty, but your sortie was still fulfilling some type of purpose. You've missed my point completely.

Launch off the front end of the boat at night, turn downwind while dumping 8K #'s of gas. Land. Total flight time, 0.2. That just ONE story, from just one dude.
 

Ih8AFYesmen

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FLAPs (F'ing Light Airplane Pilot, incase you are wondering) do well in UPT in general, especially during the T-37/T-6 phase. I haven't seen a single one do poorly in UPT but I have heard of stories of ex-commuter pilots washing out; maybe just a scare tactic. I'm guessing it must have been due to attitude.
I tend to believe that more hours and ratings, the better odds of doing well in UPT. I had to go through the flight screening program back in the day, even with a few hundred hours with an instrument ticket and I thought it was a waste of government $$$. I suppose they were just checking my attitude. Having been a student and a tweet IP myself, UPT is one place to be a yesman. Just smile and fly using "their technique". Just don't be afraid to ask for an IP change if he/she is a knob.
 

Twasilew

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Two months ago I flew 18 hours over two days to move one patient who was ambulatory. I think he had a broken leg. And no, he wasn't coming back from the war or anything like that. Grand total.....about 180,000 pounds of fuel. Estimated cost...around $150,000 maybe.

I kind of thought WTF? but at the same time, I was burning the gas so I guess I didn't care as much.

It's amazing how much is wasted in this business.

BTW, on your .2, I'm sure you logged at least a night t/o and trap. That's worth something, and I imagine that type of work requires practice and repetition. I wouldn't call it a worthless sortie at all.

Back on topic, I'd say IFS is good for someone with no flying time at all, but pointless for anyone with over 40 hours in a Cessna.
 

Birdstrike

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But this is also a way to find how a person handles a standup, deals with being part of a class, and takes instruction from others.

Appreciate that perspective. I have a son at ASBC now who reports to Pueblo in April. I'm forwarding this string. Think I'm more excited about seeing him go through than I was about going my route.
 

SIG600

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FLAPs (F'ing Light Airplane Pilot, incase you are wondering) do well in UPT in general, especially during the T-37/T-6 phase. I haven't seen a single one do poorly in UPT but I have heard of stories of ex-commuter pilots washing out; maybe just a scare tactic. I'm guessing it must have been due to attitude.
I tend to believe that more hours and ratings, the better odds of doing well in UPT. I had to go through the flight screening program back in the day, even with a few hundred hours with an instrument ticket and I thought it was a waste of government $$$. I suppose they were just checking my attitude. Having been a student and a tweet IP myself, UPT is one place to be a yesman. Just smile and fly using "their technique". Just don't be afraid to ask for an IP change if he/she is a knob.

When I went through T-34 land, there was a guy I went to school with going through at the same time. Comm/MEL/IA etc with about 500 hours. Did TERRIBLE in T-34's, selected Helos, then attrited all together. Blew my mind.
 

Ih8AFYesmen

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IMHO, the more flying experience and ratings that one has before attending military flying training, the better they are going to do, especially during the T-34/T-37/T-6 phase. In my UPT class, most everyone was on the same playing field by the time we hit T-38s. You are right.... there are always exceptions. What it comes down to is this, again IMHO. You either have it or you just don't. Some catch on quick, some a little slower, and a few never catch on. I think that most everyone can catch on eventually but the military is on a strict budget and a timeline, so if you don't cut the mustard then you are SOL. And unfortunately, some people just do not belong flying an airplane. I even see this in the airline world.
I'll leave it at this. The guys/gals who finish high in UPT, again IMHO, are either good sticks or they are kiss as$es/yesmen (in which case the military tends to attract a whole lot of). The best sticks do not always finish in the top of the class. It's a dog eat dog world out there.
 

AvroGuy

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IAnyone can fly a single engine piston within 30 hours of instruction. Not everyone can pull G's, do acro, fly form and deal with 12 tweets in the pattern at once. You're not going to screen for that at IFS.

I don't think butter bars will have any problem with the 12 tweets in the pattern. I think they will deal just fine, now the 12 texans may be a problem..
 

Mud Eagle

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I think you could scrap the whole program, send guys to the local FBO for 30 hours of straight and level flight and take-offs and landings, and still get very close to the same result. Some will do well in UPT, some will wash.

Well, that's exactly what they had for several years -- IFT. The result? They decided to standardize the program into IFS.

So, there had to be something there.
 

Tweetdrvr

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In the old FSP days of T-41s at Hondo, it was all that was needed to send folks to the T-37. You could show up not knowing anything about flying, work very hard and do well at UPT.

Of course the more you knew about flying in general, the more time you had to study only the AF specifics such as the overhead pattern, EP standups, and the stuff they were trying to teach about high performance jet flying. So as long as they had the attitude of "I am here to become a better pilot and a military aviatior," they did well. If they had the "know-it-all" syndrome, then they suffered as many here on this and other past topics have alluded too. I too know of a guy in my Nav class at MHR who was a UPT washout with a CFI, so it does and will continue to happen.

Then T-41s went away and T-3s tried to replace them. Thanks to the troubles with that program, they too went away. For awhile we had dudes show up whose first airplane ride was their C2301 dollar ride in a Tweet. Some of them must have been reincarnated flying aces from previous wars, because I know of a few who FAIPed and got fighters as a follow on, and some who went direct to fighters.

Then the AF tried the go get 30 hours at the FBO. That was a waste of money. There was no standardization and apparently no syllabus. People who went through that program were utterly clueless and it seemed like the CFIs and the Flight Schools were more than happy to take their money and joyride for time building.

Then we advanced to the get your private at the FBOs. While the quality control was not the greatest, it gave them a base GK level of weather, airspace, some aerodynamics, some night time and some hood time. Having to take the Private Written gave them a good knowledge base, and already passing an FAA checkride seemed to boost their confidence a bit. There were still a few weak swimmers. Maybe the flight schools or examiners felt sorry for them or thought the military would take care of them. My first CFI many times said the AF would teach me something. I did not stay with that dude more than two lessons, but looking back I realize he did not know what he was talking about. People seem to have some misconceptions about what we teach and do not teach at UPT, so it is understandable.

Now that we have the T-6 and do more than we have in the past at non tower CTAF places (at least for AF UPT), this would be a good program to still have around. The new generation of T-6 students seems to take longer to catch on to what the weather means to them, the flying status, and the impacts upon their mission. The ones without prior GA (most) don't do as well cross country than their got a PPL IFT predecessors, especially on the radios and doing VFR arrivals.

I like the current IFS at Doss. It is well structured, teaches them standups and the pattern. It is standardized so there is some attrition of the weak swimmers. What I wish we could do is after we take them through that program, is to send the ones who graduate out to the FBOs to finish their PPL.

Discipline them first to our way of briefing, chair flying, aim point-air speed landings, and the emphasis on EPs, then let them go out and get some experience and more knowledge on how the aviation world works. I say this as one who started flying lessons before Nav school, got to solo, then came back 18 months later to finish my private as a rated Nav. I was a different, more disciplined, more prepared private student than before. Kinda like the analogy of going to charm school and learning all the fork ROE, then going to a barbeque where you eat with your hands and lick the sauce off your fingers. Folks who have never been to charm school have big troubles adapting to manners and such at the formal dinner, but folks who went to charm school are a little uncomfortable at first, but do just fine at the picnic, they just use more napkins and are a little neater. The military way of learning to fly is the formal dining room, with lots of rules and different forks.
 

J D

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Just to clear up a few misconceptions. The current IFS syllabus at IFS is not 30 hours, it is now 13 rides with approx 18 hours of flight time with a solo and one checkride. A very short time to adapt to the AF way. Attrition is running approximately 10-15%. I think most folks would be very impressed with the program, especially how similar it is to a standard UPT squadron. Over 60-70% of the IP's are ex military with most of those being former Tweet/38 IP's. Chief Pilot was a former PIT SQ/CC.

BTW there were a few high timers (PPL/CPL) that struggled for failure to adapt.
 

Birdstrike

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The current IFS syllabus at IFS is not 30 hours, it is now 13 rides with approx 18 hours of flight time with a solo and one checkride. A very short time to adapt to the AF way...

Still, it's gotta be better than going into UPT cold, no?
 
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