I could imagine being told you got to comment to 6 years. I just found out a few days ago, it's not a big deal cause I'm young and when I get out I'll still be fairly young. I need to think about this whole thing, and maybe take a trip to my nearest recruiter.
One more question to ask, what is it like? To be in Army aviation as a mechanic of ANY of the helios, what is a normal day for you guys?
Two things....feast or famine. With a "line" or "flight" unit you work less hours (sometimes weirder) for more pay because you are drawing flight pay.
Besides experimental/research craft (which are not entry level) the only REAL options at enlisted flight will be 15U and 15T. You can be in a flight slot (actually FLYING and drawing flight pay) with many other MOSes but chances drop to super small percentages.
With what is called a maintenance unit you work SLAVISH hours and often wonder why you joined the Military.
Coming in the Army there really won't be any ways to ensure you end up in a flight unit(unless from what I can gather you have some magic way to get Ft. Belvoir)...just luck of the draw.
If I were to do it over, I would choose 15T, because they are easier crafts to work on. Chinooks are a bitch even though they are more spread out. Blackhawks can go to more duty stations as well.
0430 wake up 0530 at aircraft to do final mission prep/configuration 0630 load cargo 0700 take off 1600 return 1730 with luck the postflight and daily are complete with no issues
If it's broke then you pretty much need to stay however long it takes to fix it. Someone might need it the next day. Our schedules are pretty hard to predict because it depends on the mission requirement, but that's a good picture of a normal cargo type run.
Maintenance guys usually work 10-12 hour shifts. When we're deployed they generally have a night shift just like we have night missions. They do the larger jobs that take a couple days. You don't want to give that to flight company because we can't keep the same personnel on the same job for consecutive days due to the mission. If we're lucky we have contractors and the maintenance company is given the less critical jobs.
I was a Recruiter for a bit over 3 years as well as a 15U.
I hope you adhere to some gems I'm dropping on ya here.
ASK TO SPEAK TO YOUR RECRUITERS STATION COMMANDER. EXPLAIN YOU HAVE A STRONG CHANCE OF BEING QUALIFIED FOR ACASP IF HE COULD CALL HIS OPERATIONS TO GIVE YOU SPECIFICS.
Have him give you specifics on what he needs so this way he can't blow ya off and just say you aren't qualified. Even though an ACASP enlistment is easy to do, MOST Recruiters don't know a lot about the program to provide info off the top of their head with out their current operations support.
The Recruiters Station Commander is the station boss without going to a pain in the a$$ level. Its like going to the manager.
It could....if you meet the initial requirements.
Bout 150 bucks for half the hours of work.
I seriously felt the same way you did, but work will always be WORK. If you are stuck there 14 hours a day, it gets old lightning fast.
In the civilian world, if you are working on an aircraft you can call it a wrap at a certain hour. In the Army you may need to get the aircraft mission capable that day, which could even mean all the way up to a 18 or 24 hour shift. These scenarios tend to happen in maintenance waaaay more than flight.
If you do pick 15U or 15T, flight is what you need in your life.
Oh, ok then. I will ask for the station commander when I talk to them. Thanks for the advice.
Everyone always says they love there job for the first few months, then they start to dislike it. I've felt the same way in the civilian world, but just being around the helicopters I work on.
You do bring up a very good point, you can't stop whenever you feel like it, because you need to have this bird in top condition to fly the next day, we have the same thing in the civilian world, but I think it would be more important in the Army.
Oh, by the way 150 bones is awesome, but what is regular pay for this job?
Flight pay is based on rank and what slot you hold. I'm guessing corvette was a SPC in an OR slot by the amount he listed. I was getting 190 at my last unit as an e5 in a flight slot. I understand the tangos do less of their own maintenance and flight is the place to be. There was not a day during the deployment where we worked less than the maintenance kids.
The normal pay is just your base pay as whatever grade you are. There are job sites online where you can post your resume. You should be fairly employable with the A&P. You should look into it before you join up.
Originally posted by Triwall: There are job sites online where you can post your resume. You should be fairly employable with the A&P. You should look into it before you join up.
I know, I'm looking for work in the civilian market, the reason the Army is a choice is I can go in as a reserve or even in some cases civilian and fix the 60. Also, heli mechanic jobs are hard to get fresh out of school, they want guys who have been trained already, and most of them are former military, so I figured I could get great training and become more disciplined and refined at the same time, cause I could sure use it sometimes.
I'm still thinking about it, as it stands I'm 40% Army and 60% civilian. I need more time to think, reading about everything the Army can offer me is very exciting, but I don't know. If you could do it again, would you guys still join? Is this a bad time to think about join given the issues in the middle east?
Yes, I would do it again. You hear a lot of complaining about the army, but I have a very good standard of living and a lot more job security than what's out there right now. They will pay me to obtain a degree while I'm in and then I can use that degree at the ripe old age of 38 to start a second career. That, of course, is with half my base pay eacch month as a retirement. I've been to seven countries on the job. Some were more fun than others. You make quite a bit more when you're deployed so I don't really see those Middle East issues as a negative.
All valid points. I do like the idea of job security, both in and out of the military. Civilian employers love to hire military types do to there discipline, hard work and expert training, and like a poster say earlier, I could still do DOD or other military jobs and get a good pay. I like the the help with college, cause I could use more training to help myself in the long run. Like I said, I'm going to talk to my reciter Monday and see what is going on. My only roadblock is I'm a bit overweight, so I want to work on that before I try to join.
You guys been very helpful. More help then I've found so far, and it's really making me think about joining. I'm nervous and a bit scared to join now, but once I talk to them and get the straight story on what I can and can't do with my A&P and what is going to happen if and when I join as a Hawk mechanic, I'm sure I'll enjoy it.
I rarely will ever mention the National Guard aka Nasty Girls, but they have some sweet gigs for 15T and 15U, where many do the weekend a month and, civilian through the week. They are probably 2 of the best kept secrets in the Guard/Reserves. If you are near some of their Aviation units, it could be worth a shot, but if no Aviation units are near you, then you can rule this option out quickly, after all you don't want a 150 mile commute to work.
When I was in flight things were good, in Afghanistan and stateside. When I was in maintenance in Iraq, my experience of slavish hours changed my view. I was then voluntold for Recruiting, and the 3 years out of my MOS (Recruiting is 3 years long) had me questioning my further competence in the field. So I re-classed into Respiratory Therapy, and as of now I am happy I did.
I would do it all over again, but I would choose 15T if at all possible, if no seats are open I would take 15U all over again.
Good idea. I didn't know the National Guard/Reserves was a one week a month deal. I was thinking it was like a month of service, then you go home. Maybe that's a better way for me to join. I will look into it, cause I do like my freedom.