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Rob Lyman

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Everything posted by Rob Lyman

  1. You have to have a military physical. On the positive side, eventually, when they approve of the change, a military physical will count toward your FAA requirement.
  2. Just finished my UH-60M MTP transition today at Ft. Rucker. I can't speak to the primary/flight school 21 flying, but I have gone through 2 AQCs and 2 MTP courses in the last 6 months. One was at EAATS in Ft. Indiantown Gap and the other three were at Ft. Rucker. The flying is WAY different in AQC. The rules for approaching RTs (landing zones) and stage fields are quite different than you may be used to in general aviation. It is much more structured. About the only choices given were "Do you want to go to Andalusia today or Florala?" We did no real cross countries in AQC. The furthest we went was Montgomery on an IFR flight plan in the UH-60M. IFR you will stick mostly to a few fields within about 30 miles. As for the MTP courses, you pretty much hover at north/south tracking (Lowe) or fly counter clockwise around a box in the maintenance test flight area, pulling engines back and testing systems. Then you get gas at Troy, do more checks, fly to Andalusia or Florala, get more gas, eat lunch, switch students, blah blah blah In short, the IPs have things pretty well laid out for you. You may be offered some options as you get further along and start to do cross countries. You pretty much have to fulfill the commercial rotary wing instrument requirements with respect to flight time, cross countries, instrument time, etc.. during flight school because you come out of there eleigible for a commercial rotary wing instrument FAA license (minus the $ for the actual equivalency test). If you are interested in what Navy flight school was like 20 years ago, I could fill you in on that, but I'll leave the flight school 21 stuff for some of these younger guys to pontificate on.
  3. Great! And I am heading there for the UH-60M MTP transition Monday. I CAN'T WAIT to sit in the friggin' aircraft and do preflight and systems checks all day! At the end of this course I will be able to say I have seen Ft. Rucker at every part of the year! And I didn't even go to flight school there!
  4. I would not count on transferring from the Army to the Navy at the senior O-3 to O-4 level. For one, it would be the same stick, a lot of non-flying tours at that point. That is one of the reasons I reverted to CW2 when I went from the Navy to Army National Guard. I wanted to fly, not be on a staff. Also, you put yourself into an extremely competitve position where the guys you are competing with have already been selected above their peers for a doing a job they have been doing for 8 years (being Navy or Army officers, not the pilot part). You will have a REALLY tough time competing for promotion at that point, whether going from the Navy to the Army or vice versa. It can be done. I saw an Army warrant come into the Navy. I think he came in as an O-2. He was VERY strong in the flying part and had built a good reputation as a Naval Officer by the time he made O-3. But he was the exception. FLHOOKER (Chad), Good to hear from you. You need to change your name to NYHOOKER or something like that! LOL. I just finished my night check ride in the M Transition and hour ago. I turn around in two weeks and come back here to Rucker for the M MTP transition course. I am getting sooooo tired of Rucker! Bill G has transferred to Arizona to join Rob M to fly Apaches again. I just applied for the now vacant H-60 MTP position here so I may be a technician soon.
  5. Liner, Ha! You had AW division? I did that at HSL-40 in the early 90s. Then I went to Av/Arms. True, getting a real Div O job bolsters the leadership resume. Unfortunately, not all junior officers get that opportunity. I think all Army Os have to have command experience to get promoted. WOFT_Applicant, Personally, I like the route I took. I started in the Navy, went through O-3 active, O-4 in the reserves, took an 8 year break to make money in the civilian world, then joined the FL ARNG. It has been kind of the best of all worlds. I got to fly SH-60Bs, SH-60Fs, HH-60Hs, UH-60As and UH-60Ms so far.The FL ARNG is getting HH-60Hs soon and I am sure I'll get a chance to fly a UH-60L before they are all gone too. All of that on the tax payer's dime. In my experience, I have always been able to say to myself (while flying in the military), I can't believe I get paid to do this! If you can do the same, you will be happy flying in the military too I WILL warn you of this. If you make it to senior O-3 in the Navy, at some point they will make you do a disassociated sea tour. You probably will not get to fly at all during that tour. If you are lucky, you MIGHT get to fly during that tour,but you have to be lucky and work hard at it. You'll come back for a department head job and get to fly again as an O-4, then do another disassociated job where you do NOT get to fly. This may be in Washington. Then, if you get command of a squadron, you can come back for one last flying tour. But you will be much more interested in running the squadron than in flying. As a warrant officer in the Army, you will be flying most of your career, even if you have other collateral duties.
  6. Well, that is true. The Army does it different. Not necessarily better. Just different. I went through Navy flight school to fly SH-60Bs (Seahawks). I later joined the Army National Guard and have gone through UH-60A AQC, UH-60A/L MTPC and UH-60M AQC. I feel I am qualified to comment on both services' flight training. Navy: Dual rated (fixed wing and rotary wing) Officer (warrant officer flight program is only for a selected few enlisted active duty candidates) Very competitive. Fellow students do not help each other. They are competing, from day one and throughout their career, with their peers. Students only have an "on wing" instructor for the first few flights in a syllabus, then they tend to switch off between instructors. Instructors and test pilots learn by on the job training and are designated at the command level. They tend to be better instrument pilots. A lot of low flying over water at night. Army: Advanced courses are less competitive. Students help each other out. They have "stick buddies" throughout a given course. Instructors tend to be the same one throughout the course. A different instructor is more the exception than the rule. There are specific courses to train instructors, maintenance test pilots, IEs and MEs. They are designated after completing training outside their home command. More NVG and low level (over land) flying After commissioning via ROTC, I finished Navy flight school in 13 months and got my wings. TheSH-60B training was another 8 months. I got to my first real command the equivalent of RL-1. In the Army you get your wings at the end of your aircraft specific training. The Army aircraft specific training does not include training for every mission. You are expected to continue training while at your command, eventually progressing to RL-1. There are many more subtle differences between the two services and how they train helicopter pilots. Neither is better than the other. They just have different philosophies and approaches toward accomplishing similar goals.
  7. That's right. It's the Bell YAH-63. I found out about 30 minutes after posting this but thought I might wait to post the answer. Anyone want to guess where the picture was taken? Here's another one:
  8. There are several guard pilots on this board. I love flying in the guard so far, but I have only been in the guard for about a year. I did fly in the Navy for 10 years prior to the guard. What state are you looking to serve in?
  9. I personally have flown the Navy's SH-60B, SH-60F an HH-60H. None had the cyclic slew. The CCAD guy confirmed this morning that the Pavehawk did have the cyclic slew. EMI hardening was definitely one of the other changes the Navy addressed. If you have ever seen a stabilator drive full down while on the back of an Aegis cruiser with noone in the aircraft, it will open your eyes. I am not sure I'll buy the difference in mission. Night takeoffs unaided from the back of a small ship are not the place you would want the stab to fail. If I had to put money on it, I would say the Army did have some problems that involved training and some design shortcomings. The Navy, who needed a significantly redesigned hawk for shipboard use, decided the fears of the Army were either unwarranted, or were addressed by training and possibly EMI hardening. They opted out of the cyclic slew and more involved stabilator checks on runup If by the term "Lawn Dart" you mean the aircraft was unsafe and should not have been fielded, than the term is not deserved. By and far, most Army, and later Navy and Air Force pilots had no problems operating the aircraft safely. Leave it up to military pilots to operate an aircraft in a manner that the designers never thought about. The V-22 may end up the same way. It is hard to say. Few would disagree that it represents a bolder departure from conventional designs than did the Blackhawk when it was first fielded. Speaking of departures from the norm, it will be interesting to see the UH-60M upgrade 1 that is fly by wire. A source at Sikorsky told me they have been running the flight controls remotely in their facility continuously for over a year. No broom closet and no cables to the tail rotor! I am not sure I am ready for that.
  10. The groundings are enlightening. I think a better analysis would be to see what the Air Force and Navy reactions were for their fleet of hawks during the same period. Unfortunately the Army got theirs much earlier. The presense or omission of the cyclic slew button speaks volumes on the two services reaction to the problem, 20 to 30 years later. I'll check today with a CCAD pilot who has Pavehawk time and see if the Air Force has the switch on their Pavehawks. I am not sure how telling that will be. I remember him saying how unimpressed he was with the sophistication of the airframe. At any rate, examining the past and present of the H-60 you can see how cloudy the truth can be regarding the fielding of a new aircraft such as the Comanche or Osprey.
  11. I think the Army was responsible for most of the countermeasures, not Sikorsky. In the 10+ years I flew them, the Navy Seahawks never had the the cyclic mounted stabilator slew switch that the Blackhawks have. As far as I know, the newest Seahawk (SH-60R) still lacks the cyclic slew switch while the newest Blackhawk (M) is definitely fielded with the switch. Without actual investigation reports in front of me, I am more inclined to trust the word of someone like Nick Lappos than the rumor mill. I heard a LOT of less than flattering rumors concerning the Army's operation of the aircraft with respect to these failures. Now that I have operated the Seahawk and the Blackhawk in both the Navy and the Army, I take a lot of that with a grain of salt and chock it up to interservice rivalry. Each service has their way of operating the 'hawk. Each has its strengths and weaknesses and each goes through it's growing pains with a new aircraft. Sometimes the lessons are learned from the previous mistakes, sometimes each service invents their own issues with the aircraft. I pose this question: In the early 1980s, suppose a pilot flying an agressive takeoff profile in a Blackhawk encountered a stabilator auto mode failure around 30 - 50 kts. If the stabilator kicked out of automode, it would remain at 34-42 degrees trailing edge down and the pilot would hear a beeping tone. If he reacted like he used to when he heard the UH-1 engine out tone (beeping) and lowered the collective, he might have very well become a "lawn dart". Would that havebeen an aircraft problem, a training problem or a pilot problem? Also, just in case it needs carification, I did not call anyone a bigot. That was Nick's response to someone who called themself a Boeing Bigot.
  12. From everything I have gathered, the "Lawn Dart" reputation is undeserving. I have spoken to someone from Sikorsky, several MEs, each with more than 10000 flight hours of which a great deal is in the UH-60, and read a post by one of the Sikorsky's chief test pilots. Here is Nick Lappos post on the subject below: You can read through the entire thread here. And to keep it more on the original subject, the link above is actually about the V-22 and tilt rotors. Funny how the debate has been going on since at least May of 2000.
  13. No. But I had to go back to check to make sure. If I recall, the OH-6 was there last fall before they moved the Cobra from the side of the building near the Skycrane. BTW, I found the Cheyenne. It is behind a warehouse in a fenced area behind and across the street from the simulator. It looks very sad.
  14. The Cheyenne is gone now too. When I left Ft.Rucker in October the blades were off. I thought they were just going to paint it. It needed it. I am back at Ft.Rucker now for MTP course and the Cheyenne is GONE. The OH-58 and Cobra are back up against the museum wall sporting new paint jobs. Maybe the Cheyenne will show up again with a new paint job.
  15. If you have a collge degree, there are other options beside Army WO. The Navy has AOCS, which guarantees you an aviation spot and a commission as an Ensign once you finish AOCS. It may be slightly harder to get into, but allows you to skip the enlisted time prior to AOCS.
  16. My "board" consisted of driving to St.Augustine from Jacksonville in my Navy uniform, then being told that I would have to come back the following month because I needed a brand new MEPS physical. Once that was completed and waivers were completed a few months later, I was told I did not have to show up and that I would be approved at the next board. The next month I met someone at a fireworks store off of I-95, signed some papers, then showed up at the next drill. Obviously my experence was different due to my prior experience and rank in the Navy, but I was still surprised at the informal nature of it. I was also VERY surprised by the amount of processing associated with the medical waiver for hearing loss and the clearing of several minor medical non-issue hurdles.
  17. I would not just show up.You may find yourself on the other side of a fence, literally, with noone to let you through. You are much better off talking to the S1 and telling them you want to come out and take a look around. Then, when you get out there, try to meet as many people as yyou can. If you get contact info from other people, they may help you past road blocks that the S1 may have constructed, intentionally or as a consequence of beiing too busy. It never helps to have as many friends on the inside as possible. I got in our unit by meeting a fellow pilot at the Navy flying club. He gave me some contacts at the guard unit. It took nearly a year to join and another 10 months to get an AQC slot. I had a lot of prior military flight time from the navy. How well you are accepted and whether you can get a flight slot will depend on the following: How many pilot slots are vacant How motivated the unit thinks you are How likely they think you are to get through training and stick around Budget/quatas available (This is what slowed me down so much.) Your prior experience
  18. Ahhh..."boring rotor". Yeah, I was pretty bored too, taking off and landing on the back of frigates and cruisers at night unaided. I was also bored flying into Somalia before the Army even got there. Oh, and that 17 nm Penguin anti-ship missle was a real yawn. I really hated the brand-new-car smell of the SH-60Bs as we took delivery from the factory. I am pretty sure if I had it to do again, I would have quit the Navy when they told me I would be flying helicopters. If I was joining the Navy now, I would really hate to fly the new SH-60R, with its Hellfire missiles and torpedoes. All sarcasm aside, there are some good comments on this thread. My personal comments are: You will stay flying longer as a warrant in the Army. You will definitely get to fly some fixed wing in the Navy, even if it is just in primary. Solo aerobatics flights were a hoot. That's something you will never do in the Army. I won't deny that flying circles around an aircraft carrier is boring, but I only had to do it a few times. There is more to look at when flying low over the land There are fewer places from which the enemy can take a shot at you when flying low over the water Being a warrant officer or a line officer beats being enlisted Flying beats being a ground ponder or ship driver None of the options will guarantee you a specific model of aircraft. You could go fixed wing in the Navy and end up flying C-130s or P-3s. Up until recently, jets in the Navy include the S-3B Viking. It's still a jet, but not an F/A-18 by any means. The Army still has UH-1s. I am not berating any of these aircraft. I am just saying that if you have your mind set on only Navy F-18s, Army Apaches or Army 160th, what you actually get to fly might be quite different. You might want to keep a "Plan B" in the back of your mind, because no matter how good tyou are, you might not get what you want. One last thing...Being good might actually help your chances at getting what you want. Thinking you are good without a corresponding level of performance will probably hurt your chances. Be careful to check you attitude at the door, no matter where you go for military flight training.
  19. For me, there was little celebration for making HAC, but my 1000 hr mark was a different story. The aircrew and maintenance guys spot tied my hands behind my back, spot tied my feet, hoisted me from the maintenance crane in the ship's hangar, then painted a "1000" on my forehead with grease. I think I would have preferred pushups in the mud.
  20. I wanted to offer my congratulations to FLHooker (aka Chad) for making PC this weekend. Way to go!!!BTW, He accomplished this feat as an MDay pilot in minimal time. Edit: PC = Pilot in Command. This means FLHooker is now responsible for the supervision/training of junior pilots. He can take the keys without "daddy" sitting in the seat next to him. It is what we called Helicopter Aircraft Commander (HAC) in the Navy. A big step and a big increase in responsibility.
  21. I fly them both. If you are taking your family somewhere, an airplane is best. It is [usually] less noisey and will get you there quicker. For just the joy of flying, a helicopter is best. You fly lower to the ground and are less inhibited by FARs and aerodynamics. There is nothing like being at a busy airport with fixed wing waiting for the runway, when ground control tells you to switch to tower and expect takeoff from present position. Landing in confined areas or on the back of a ship is a blast. I flew active duty Navy, I fly in the National Guard now and instruct in fixed wing aircraft at a local flight school. I fly part time and make money as a software developer. I may switch to a full time flying job if the right one comes along. I loved all aspects of my flight training. I like instructing too. Regardless of what you fly, there is nothing like being up behind the controls of an aircraft and thinking, "Wow, I am getting paid to do this."
  22. You got me there! Sometimes I forget I am flying just a bus now. And the sucky part is it has no AC.
  23. I always wondered what made people choose the Chinook! LOL
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