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SBuzzkill

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SBuzzkill last won the day on December 17 2019

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About SBuzzkill

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  1. I wish I could help you. All I can say is that getting a flight physical at Fort Irwin was a pain in the ass even as an active duty aviator. Good luck!
  2. It's your money, but I'd stick with the free stuff until you get to your unit and progress. You'll have a better idea of what you want and need after that.
  3. Finish your packet and turn it in. If they say no then work on improving it. Anything else is just wasting time, don’t hold it back worrying about being competitive. Complete it ASAP, turn it in. It’s that easy.
  4. LOL Buddy... Don’t sh*t on the new kids. Shibagod those are airliners, not Army selection. wm200 is messing with you.
  5. The sound track is different but was this the video? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wa8BhdcOjO0
  6. The folks at Fort Irwin told us there is no DOD policy against any breed of dog. It's the housing companies that restrict them. But yeah everyone just puts lab mix down and lives with their pit bulls. Just don't let your dog bark in the back yard or get loose and I bet you'll be fine. Edit: Before someone comes along and corrects me, I did not dig into it any further. I just remember there being no breed restrictions on the base itself, just in the housing areas ran by whatever company that was.
  7. Now that I got lifestyle out fo the way let me fill you with some stoke for the flying part of the job. Some of my favorite things: 1. Flying low and slow. The thing about Army flying at least on the scout side was that the majority of our time was spent just above the trees, flying with the doors off between 50-90 knots. It's incredible how connected you feel to what's happening on the ground, while still having the mobility of flying. You'll be buzzing along and all of the sudden you'll feel the air get cooler, you'll feel the moisture on your face, and you'll realize you just crossed over a stream. You'll catch a whiff of smoke, you'll smell the fields, you'll wave at people and actually interact with them beyond just being something they look up at. 2. Leaving the wire. Whether from a FOB on deployment, or a field exercise, it's a unique experience to be so restricted by the wire and then climb in a bird, fire it up, and be kilometers away in a matter of minutes. You get a perspective of the battlefield that nobody else gets. You'll truly understand the scale of things and you'll be able to use that freedom to become a lifeline for the less mobile folks on the ground. 3. Multi-ship. Especially as a scout weapons team. My favorite was flying trail. It was such a challenge to cover lead while staying out of their way and keeping yourself out of trouble. Once you figured it out, it was like a dance. You knew what your buddies below you were going to do and you shifted around as they did it. Darting back and forth up and down, circling high while they went low, etc. Man that was fun. 4. Gunnery. The OH-58 had fixed weapons, so we usually marked the windshield with grease pen or in my case just some oil smudged off my nose to aim. Point and shoot WW2 fighter style. The .50 cal recoil would put the aircraft out of trim, so you had to add just a smidge of right pedal as you pushed the trigger. Putting a couple rockets on target from 2km and following with a burst of .50 cal was so incredibly satisfying. 5. The ability to land anywhere. It's so crazy to be flying along at 1000 feet and then a minute later be sitting on the ground in the field you just flew over. I really enjoyed shuttling people out into the desert for briefings, shutting my bird down, and just hanging out on the skids watching the sun set. We'd set down on mountain tops to watch the battle as OCs, places that would take hours to get to on foot we could just buzz right on up. Getting low on fuel? Run her up to 100% and 5 minutes later we're in the FARP grabbing some gas. 6. Cross country flying. "Self deploying" to our nationwide training events. It's you and 11 of your best friends, flying helicopters across the country, BSing for hours on internal while the scenery rolls by. Landing at tiny airports and grabbing the crew car to get Subway for everyone. In a new city every night figuring out where you're going to go for dinner and beers. 7. Putting hours on birds for maintenance. You'll probably never have another job where someone just throws you the keys to an aircraft and says "hey we need 6 hours on this thing." Just incredible. 8. Complex missions. These are a lot of work. Lots of planning, briefing, headaches. They hardly ever go according to the plan. But damn did I enjoy the slammed radios, the sitting at idle for hours and then the rush of getting into the fight. The boredom of circling overhead. Feeding information to the winded guy on the ground hustling his way through the hills. De-conflicting the airspace with the incoming lift aircraft or handing the battle over to another team of scouts or Apaches. Talking to the jets circling above. These are the missions you land at the end of your 8 hours and fall out of the bird just wanting to crawl into your sleeping bag. Nope, you gotta go debrief. LoL I could keep going on and on. Hah! I've done quite a bit of flying since the Army. None of it has been nearly as rewarding as some of those missions in little green aircraft. Look forward to it and savor it while you're doing it. I'm glad my time with the Army is over, but I do miss it.
  8. Going on a rant here. From what I've seen there are 3 types of Warrant Officer in a unit. 1. Careerists. They want to retire in the Army, they at least pretend to like the position they're in, and always support the command. Other WOs would say they "drank the Koolaid." Whatever, they just like what they do. 2. Fencers. These folks don't necessarily love the whole package, but they can see both sides of the fence. They're going to do the job, grumble a bit, but for the most part you'll see "quiet professionalism" from them. 3. Suckers. These folks made a miscalculation, and instead of owning their choice they're going to whine about "how it should be" over and over and over. To anyone who will listen. They're going to drag the Fencers into the mud, and they're going to make life difficult for the Careerists. Whenever a new person walks into the room you can watch these folks gather like mosquitos to a bug zapper to fill their ears with how bad the unit is. You're going to see this in any career field that will tolerate it. Anyways, I had a few distinct periods in my short Army career that I'll break down for you. 1. Flight school. This was an exciting time for me. I was new to the Army and incredibly excited to be on a track to fly for a living. I was amped about serving my country and enamored with the history of Army Aviation. I truly enjoyed my time at Fort Rucker, had a great group of friends, and worked hard/played hard. 2. The Combat Aviation Brigade. Getting to my first duty station was also exciting. RL progression, training for Afghanistan, deploying, all were good times. I really enjoyed my first few years in the unit and learning to fly as a scout pilot. Then we got back from deployment and I had the worst year of my career. Full of downs, it was miserable. But once that year was over things picked back up and I was able to enjoy the last year and a half in the CAB. There were some stupid things and frustrations, but overall I still really enjoyed my unit and the job. 3. OC detachment at NTC. This was the best overall job I had in the Army. I had one additional duty and flew a lot. I went to work, went home just about every night, and had a set schedule that I knew of a year in advance. There were very few surprises. The flying was excellent. The cohesion was nothing like a go-to-war unit though, it was more like a civilian job where everyone showed up then went their separate ways. But hey, my wife and I were starting a family and that's what I was looking for. Overall I wouldn't trade my time for anything. I loved flying the Kiowa and I enjoyed putting the uniform on and going to work. Embrace the job you're in, stay positive, and don't try to compare your job in the Army to a civilian one. 8 years goes by quickly and before you know it you'll be looking back and only remembering the good times.
  9. I don't know anyone that has done extended stay in a hotel there. I do have friends that lived in trailers, apartments, houses, on base, off base, in Ozark, in Dothan, in Enterprise, Daleville, pretty much anywhere you could think of in the area. Almost everyone who lived in Dothan regretted it. It's just a little too far. As for living in your car. Dude, it's hot as hell in the summer and super humid. You're going to be making decent money and they're giving you a housing allowance. If you want to save money go get yourself a shitty apartment somewhere.
  10. The way it worked out in the end I don’t think there were too many that just got a “have a good life” from the Army. Lots of folks UQRd, or were offered transitions and turned them down. I eventually got offered a transition but chose to ride my time out as a 58 pilot and take severance to fund my airline career. From what I saw there were options to stay in but they weren’t always very palatable.
  11. The descriptions in the OH-58C Technical Manual are spot on for what I've experienced in regards to LTE. Vortex Ring on the tail rotor just required a bit more "dancing" on the pedals and cyclic inputs to control the attitude. Other than the higher workload it was not really a big deal for a careful pilot and I never ran out of pedal. My flying was generally max gross, moderate DA, and frequently all the way up to the wind limitations. My biggest concern hovering tail into the wind was that I had to be more careful about obstacles on the ground where I wanted to put down, since I knew I wasn't going to be able to be as precise with skid placement. One thing I was always careful of was making a transition to high power with the tail into the wind. That's a good way to start a spin you can't stop. But that's like pilot 101 stuff.
  12. If your ground speed is lower than the tailwind?
  13. They weren't even offering fixed wing transitions when they retired the Kiowa and put ~900 aviators out of an airframe. I'll never say it can't happen, but it's incredibly unlikely. Especially if you tell them it's because you're unhappy with your choice Edit: They weren't offering it to warrant officers. I know quite a few o-grades who jumped over to fixed wing once the OH-58 went away. What are you expecting to find in the fixed wing world and what are you hoping to get away from in the rotary?
  14. A mediocre PT score brought me from number one in the class to number four at selection. Don’t blow it off.
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