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Blacka
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Military pilots

Postby Blacka » Mon Aug 1 2011, 13:23

Ok guys,

I have a conundrum I have made it through the start of the selection process in becoming an Army pilot for the Australian Defence Force, the problem is it has been a few months sence I applied and I guess you could call it back peddling, in the last 2 months I have moved in with my girlfriend, and have been given a rather significant promotion at work, and I actually like my current job,
I'm stuck in what I should do, because I personally know a lot of people that have tried and failed to join the military let alone make it as a pilot,

I guess I'm really after some words of wisdom from those that have gone before me,

My options at the present time are,
Join the Army as a pilot
Join and try out for the commandos through SFDRS
Stay working in management But will need to look for a new job in a few months

Thankyou
James Blacker
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Masto
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Masto » Mon Aug 1 2011, 13:49

Hey James,

I'm currently in the Navy, and ex-Army (non-aviation trades) and pretty sure others on here will be the first to back me up when I say, unfortunatlly no one can tell you what you should do. We'll all give you our opinions on the good things you can get out of Defence, and some of us will even volunteer the bad points (whether you want them or not haha).

As I'm writing this, I realize that I haven't really helped in any way. But I have enjoyed my time. The many things you gain can far out-weigh the negatives. It's all on how you deal with them.

Masto
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papillons
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Re: Military pilots

Postby papillons » Mon Aug 1 2011, 21:18

Hi James,

You're probably smart enough to recognize the truth in what Masto says. Very personal call, all sorts of factors from your age to how cuddly your g/f is on a cold Friday night to be factored in! Good luck making your choice.

FWIW, however, if you were my younger brother wrestling with what is potentially a life defining choice, I guess I'd be inclined to sit you down over a coldie and rattle your shoulders a bit: point out that the only decision you (probably) can't reverse here is the one to knock the ADF slot back. It's competitive to get a crack at military training. Maybe approach the matter by asking yourself a bunch of what-ifs regarding the next few years. What if it doesn't work out on the relationship front; what if I don't find that good new gig; what if i hit forty and find myself still looking up wistfully every time an army helo arcs over...unless you can guarantee yourself a lifetime free of regret, if youve got doubts you might be wise to err on the side of 'carpe diem'.

Mind you, if you were my younger brother, at about this point you'd be leaning over the pub table and telling me to f*ck off and mind my own biz, too! So...what Masto said.

Good luck.
¡Librame!
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Tactical71
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Tactical71 » Mon Aug 1 2011, 21:29

James,

Army Pilot and Commandos. Two fairly different roles! Sounds like your not exactly sure on what you want to do in the military. Im not a military person, but I knocked back an opportunity to be an ADGie many years ago when I was younger and much fitter. Whilst I dont regret not taking the opportunity, I often wonder where I would be now, and having friends who are former ADGies, I know I would have enjoyed it. If you are young, and dont have a family yet, then I would say take the opportunity to join the Army as a pilot, if you've got that far. Once your in, if piloting is not your thing, then you can move across to SF Command. As for your management job, if its only for a few months as you say, then your going to have to find something new anyway. If your good at your management job, then adding military service to your resume would only help when you finally come back into civillian life. Being a Commando or military pilot is not some that is easy to embark on later in life when you have a family and a mortgage.

So my advice is take the military option while you can. If your new girlfriend is the right one, she will stick by you. Especially when don the Rayban Aviator sunglasses! What woman can resist a man in them!

Good luck whatever option you take.

Cheers
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Bigdog
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Bigdog » Mon Aug 1 2011, 22:17

James,
I am about to leave the military (2 weeks :o ) after 20 years of service. I may be able to give you some sound advice.
I have been in 3 different jobs within the military over my time. I started out in Infantry, 3 RAR for 5 years. While I had a ball in infantry its not a long term career, can you see yourself doing fire and movement for 20 years, when your 40? and then when you leave what skill do you have for civil industry. I see so many 20-30 year infantry veterans manning base front gates or running range control offices. Im not talking you out of infantry, im just saying consider it a short term career before you move onto something else.
I then moved on to RAEME as an Aircraft Technician for 3 years, that was where I got the taste for flying...... :cool_dc:
I then was successful in selection for Pilot training and Officer selection. I have never looked back, for the last 13 years I have had the best time as a Pilot and flying instructor, its this last job that has set me up for life in civil industry.
So some benefits of Military V's Civil;
Job security, will your current employer offer you that same security as that of a defence career?
Great pay and reasonable conditions, subsidised housing, good super and top of the industry training,
Versatility, you can move around within defence with reasonable ease, if you don't like lift, transfer to Recon and alike,

So in summary and to help you with your decision, consider a life in Defence as a life style and career, V's a job in civil industry (non-avation) as a job and potential uncertainty or volatility in regard to security. Now I say that not knowing what job you have, so I may be wrong there as there are many jobs on civi street that provide very good security if your in a niche market.
One thing tho, in Defence Aviation, your Job is your lifestyle! in civil industry your job is your job. Defence tends to blur the line between knockoff and home time, particularly as you climb the ranks. You are never more than a phone call away from your next 6 months deployment, believe me I know.

Oh one last thing, don't quote me but I don't think they are running the SFDRS anymore? When they did it last year about 300 dudes tried out and only 3 got though!! or something like that, im not %100 on the numbers. So now you need to do some Green infantry time prior to being considered for SF selection.

Good luck. If your in sydney PM me and I will be happy to talk in person or phone, but im outa here in 10 days headed to the Sunshine Coast for a new life..........
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Re: Military pilots

Postby froginasock » Mon Aug 1 2011, 22:43

Good advice above ... my 2 cents

Never look back and say what if ?

Don't go military unless you are committed to it and the lifestyle - especially the early years during training (it's something you don't want to do half arsed).
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Bigdog
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Bigdog » Mon Aug 1 2011, 22:54

froginasock wrote:Good advice above ... my 2 cents

Never look back and say what if ?

Don't go military unless you are committed to it and the lifestyle - especially the early years during training (it's something you don't want to do half arsed).



I was just about to add the same thing. James, Military Pilot training is known as the hardest course in the defence force (academically). If you start training with out %120 commitment you will fail! without a doubt. I would even tell your GF that she needs to look deep into the relationship, she needs to be prepared to assist you in the hard times :shock: (no pun intended) I have seen a few guys that were trucking along nicely on Pilot course, then to receive the "dear John" letter half way through course and then the student just looses all motivation, and fail anyway.....
So don't even start course without full committal. Get through the course and you will have a ball.
If the new GF decides its not for her, while that would be unfortunate, the upside is you can complete course with a clear head. When your a badged Pilot you will be beating the chicks off with a stick!! 8)
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Bionic_kid » Mon Aug 1 2011, 23:32

Bigdog wrote: I have seen a few guys that were trucking along nicely on Pilot course, then to receive the "dear John" letter half way through course and then the student just looses all motivation, and fail anyway.....


yeah... agree fully on that. I was half way thru Sandhurst in the UK on the way to my boyhood dream when I got my letter... along with an small injury my performance dropped so rapidly that I only just made it to the end and then got binned with a "come back when your heads sorted" footnote. Army wives and gf are a rare breed and if your missus is one then hold on tight to her...

One point is you can always go from pilot to infantry but after 10 years of ground pounding will your knees/back be good enough for you to step up to pilot if you're lucky enough to be offered it again.

Also will you be sitting in your office in your cushty managers job staring out the window going "what if"

Basically what will make you happiest in the long run and on the day to day? Swaggering into work on the flight deck or in your suit? (and frankly office jobs can wait and you'll be better equipped after the forces to do very well in a management situation.)
pavlov's dog
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Re: Military pilots

Postby pavlov's dog » Tue Aug 2 2011, 00:24

James:

You're on "Bladeslapper" not "Deskslapper". Decision made.

PD
harold
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Re: Military pilots

Postby harold » Tue Aug 2 2011, 00:26

James; grow a big set of those furry things and make a decision!
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Tactical71 » Tue Aug 2 2011, 07:16

Nicely said Pav! ......Deskslapper!!! Love it. :lol:
cj0203
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Re: Military pilots

Postby cj0203 » Tue Aug 2 2011, 11:13

Just be aware mate that things are slow in terms of Army Pilot at the moment. Are you going Direct Entry/SSO? Have you done Flight Screening yet? As far as I'm aware, there are no more intakes this year and when there is an intake, numbers will be small. My application for Army SSO is over 2 years old now and I have been recommended at Tamworth twice now but no luck with an offer yet. And with all 3 services pretty much full, the pool is getting quite crowded with recommended applicants. Not trying to deter you because it hasn't deterred me but just letting you now that it could be a long wait and possible re-sitting of the OSB if your file expires.

Cheers

Chris
Blacka
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Blacka » Tue Aug 2 2011, 23:43

Hey chris.

Im going SSO,
What about you?
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Yankee » Wed Aug 3 2011, 03:22

JB,

Sounds like you've already made the decision, Just by the fact you're coming on here asking if being a military pilot is a good idea... For me it was something I always wanted, there never was a question in my mind, and it was still very difficult!!!

Now, go take a look at your GF, ask yourself if you'd be willing to choose your military career over her? If so then you need to tell her that's the way it is and she can choose to support you or not.

Best of luck with whatever you choose.
Don't think of yourself as and ugly person. Think of yourself as a beautiful monkey.
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Bigdog
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Bigdog » Wed Aug 3 2011, 03:51

Blacka wrote:Hey chris.

Im going SSO,
What about you?

So does that mean you have made your decision? 8)
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Re: Military pilots

Postby cj0203 » Wed Aug 3 2011, 09:21

Yeah mate, SSO is my first preference.

Chris
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Re: Military pilots

Postby opulence » Thu Aug 18 2011, 00:02

Hi,

I've also been very interested over the years and the only thing that's stopped me is that you've got to be REAL sure if you're going to sign on the dotted line for 9 years.

So can any of the guys with experience give a rough outline of what they don't tell you on the website? Day to day lifestyle. Issues / gripes / thoughts about operational effectiveness etc. General thoughts about it really just to get a bit of inside info.

Also, it says that SSO are a priority job right now. Why is it taking so long for your transfer?

A few people have said that the period of service is only 6 years? Are they just dyslexic?
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Re: Military pilots

Postby cj0203 » Thu Aug 18 2011, 08:53

Yes the DFR website says Army SSO pilot is a 'priority job' and it s#!t me. It just shows how out of touch with things they really are.
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Nato
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Nato » Thu Aug 18 2011, 09:40

Let me begin by saying that passing your assessment day is only the second step in a long and difficult (but exceptionally rewarding) process to getting your military wings.
If you are hesitant, at some point, it will be noticed, and you simply will not get recommended to the next stage.

The reason that recruiting constantly advertises pilot positions as available is simple, to attract a continuous supply of the best and brightest to choose from. I was told earlier this year that training someone up to their basic military wings cost in the vicinity of $4M. Flight screening costs ~$10k for each person they put through it.

I successfully made it to flight screening, along with 8 others in March. One, pulled out for the same reasons you've brought up; relationship, unsure of military service commitment length, unsure about the lifestyle/mentality. His name is also James, coincidence? Or is this actually Jimmy?
Of the 9 who started, 7 completed the course. 2 were recommended.
Keep in mind, a recommendation isn't a job offer! Only the top 30% or so of the recommended will get an offer, and only when the service needs a position filled.

Unfortunately, I was not recommended, and I am now on track with my plan B, paying for my own CPLH.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.
Nato
Blacka
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Re: Military pilots

Postby Blacka » Thu Aug 18 2011, 12:02

Yer NATO I heard the same thing that it's close to 4million, no it wasn't me that went for flight training, I wouldn't if pulled out if I got that far,

Yes I gave the very lovely blabber mouths a call at the Defence recruiting, just for those that are reading this and thinking what they tell you is the truth, don't, please remember there job is to get you to sign the dotted line and will tell you what ever you want to hear, like car sales men,

Update for all,
I will need to resit my YOU session now, it's not going to be hard, and then go from there,
So end story no deskslapping for me, well not for a lot longer anyway.

NATO I'd love to have a chat,

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