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Fixed Wing Career Vs. Rotary

Fixed Wingadvice career vs

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#1 JacobB



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Posted 04 April 2019 - 22:10

Hello VR, I'm currently putting together a packet for the July 2019 board and I am curious about fixed wing careers vs. rotary wing careers.


1. Is there a real difference in day-to-day work/life in comparison?

2. I've heard that the duty stations for FW are less than desirable, is this true?

3. Are the promotion rates affected when going FW?

4. Is there any advantage over the other?




#2 Micah4


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Posted 08 April 2019 - 20:42

I found this image awhile back for all the possible duty stations for specific airframes.

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#3 magnus017


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Posted 10 April 2019 - 05:17

1. We don't really go to the field (save maybe an overnight once in a blue moon for range day or something). Day to day work is usually 9-5ish. As a junior warrant you'll be put in charge of something like the fridge to start, then after that ALSE, supply, flight ops, etc.

2. Duty stations covered above. There are a few more one off spots (like jets in japan or C-27s in Bragg/Yuma), but those are rare/impossible to get as your first duty station.

3. Promotion rates to CW3 are high. FW guys are more competitive going into the airlines/ISR contracting over seas so the Army is trying to throw everything at the guys around 6 years into their ADSO to keep them from leaving. They're currently offering a $105k bonus for a 3 year ADSO to any 155E (MC-12 pilot) with an upslip. You don't have to be tracked, or even a PC to be eligible for that bonus, that's how hard up the FW community is.

4. Advantages to FW would be: little/no field time/roughing it. TDY is spent in a hotel. Deployments are usually short. MAX 6 months but the norm is 2-4ish. Your hours in a FW platform transfer over better to the civilian side in most cases (airlines/ISR contracting). Also, there are tons of fun additional training opportunities such as: upset recovery training (aerobatics in an extra 300 and a jet), bush pilot course in Alaska, CTP/ATP paid for by the Army (your results may vary on that one), sea plane course, and any additional courses you may want for your additional duty (I'm a cyber/S6 guy by trade/degree and I've been to training and been certified in a number of cyber schools while serving as a pilot here).

Disadvantages: FW is not as engaging/stimulating/exciting as the rotary world. Take that for what it's worth. There's also not as much direct support of the guys on the ground (we can/do do it occasionally, but it's not our normal everyday deployed job). So I guess job fulfillment would/could be a drawback.

Hopefully this is a good rundown to help you out.

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#4 ElJay


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Posted 10 April 2019 - 09:38

ADSOs are going up in the next year or two. 8 years-rotary 10 years-fixed

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