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How does flying in the Air Force Reserve work?

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Old 03-18-2011, 01:24 PM   #1
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How does flying in the Air Force Reserve work?

I have really been looking into flying with the Air Force Reserve, particularly in the C-17. I'm 25.5 years old, graduating in May with a b.s, and have approximately 260 hrs. total-time (instrument-rated private pilot single engine land). By the time I apply to the USAFR, I should have the commercial ticket as well.

I want to know as much as I can from people who are doing what I want to do and basically know EXACTLY what I would be getting myself into. How would flying the C-17 work? What are the day-to-day activities? How many hours could I expect to fly? How does "licensing" work in the military?

Appreciate it guys.
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:47 PM   #2
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Unless I am extremely mistaken, every military pilot has to go through flight school. In order to go through flight school you must be on active duty and actually be selected to go to flight school. Then you have to make it through. That doesn't even guarantee that you will get to fly what you thought you wanted (I thought I wanted jets, now I can't imagine flying anything but a helicopter). Then you are obligated for 8-10 years active service.
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:06 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunner23 View Post
Unless I am extremely mistaken, every military pilot has to go through flight school. In order to go through flight school you must be on active duty and actually be selected to go to flight school. Then you have to make it through. That doesn't even guarantee that you will get to fly what you thought you wanted (I thought I wanted jets, now I can't imagine flying anything but a helicopter). Then you are obligated for 8-10 years active service.
From what I understand, it's about two years worth of training should I get hired. I would go in to OTS as a ssgt for a few months, then into SERE for a few more months followed by lots of flight training and going on "tours" for the remainder of the time. I hear reserve is a little different than AD, where you are told exactly what you will be doing before you sign. What I am trying to find out is what it's like after training and the leash has been taken off (so-to-speak).
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunner23 View Post
Just out of curiosity, who are you getting this info from?
Different, credible, sources...why?
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:48 PM   #6
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Hmm, I just found some info like what you are describing. The Air Force certainly works much differently than the Navy, you have to commit to active duty to fly with us.
All I can tell you is that as hard as it is for any service active duty to get a pilot slot, it'll be much harder for reserve since money is so tight. They are actually paying pilots to get out and forgiving their commitments because there are so many of us.
Wish you the best of luck, make that resume shine. Flight school was a blast, and as laid back as most reservists are, reserve flying has to be right up there with being a Coastie pilot (they have the best job, btw)
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:56 PM   #7
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Basically, you have to get hired by a Reserve unit for a slot. This is hard to do, because a lot of active-duty guys go reserves once they start flying cattle in the real world. Of course, the unit is going to take an experienced military pilot over a newb with little to no flight time.

The Air Force Reserves only hires applicants who posses a current private pilot's license and a Class III flight physical.

Assuming you get hired, you need at least an 80 on the AFOQT, and need to go to OTS and make the minimum qualifications for flight school there. Afterwards, it's water survival training in Florida for a week or 2, then SERE in Spokane for a couple weeks.

Then you get sent to basic flight school for several months to fly training aircraft, then advanced, then multi-engine, etc., etc. until you get to your specific bird.

Overall, the process takes about 3 years, counting the necessary run-up to getting in.

It's a giant pain in the ass, but worth it if you can do it. Get going now, don't wait until you are almost 28 -- that's the cutoff.
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:51 PM   #8
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What the above poster said.

Of the many great things about AFRC/ANG, you know what you will fly if you get hired and make it through training.

You get picked up by the Hawaii Air National Guard, you will fly the F-22. You get picked up by the OH ANG, you might fly an F-16 or C-27 (unit depending)...same same with the Reserves.
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:52 PM   #9
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Appreciate all the info. guys. I'm not too worried about the training, and if everything I have heard so far is accurate, then I intend to do everything humanly possible to get a flight slot in the C-17 or KC-135 if need be. However, I'm just wondering what it's like to fly in the reserves after training. What's the lifestyle, you know? Would I basically be able to work/fly as much as I wanted (given there is work/flights to be completed)?
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Old 03-20-2011, 05:59 PM   #10
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Bump
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Old 03-20-2011, 06:12 PM   #11
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Hey Dude,

PM me ... I'm a C-17 pilot and can point you in the right direction.
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Old 03-20-2011, 06:15 PM   #12
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Jack, (Dude)

Just noticed that I have actually talked to you before .. Anyway, if you still have questions or are getting closer ... Call me anytime. PM sent ...

Adam
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Old 03-20-2011, 09:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c17flyer View Post
Jack, (Dude)

Just noticed that I have actually talked to you before .. Anyway, if you still have questions or are getting closer ... Call me anytime. PM sent ...

Adam
Haha you're right...I thought about that when I was chattin' with ya. Thanks again for your input and really hope I get the chance to fly with ya in OK.
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