How long does it take to train a TA craftsman?

#1
Evening all,

I'm in the process of enlisting wiht my local TA unit. It's a Signals squadron, but I was told that have an open VM slot, which quite piqued my interest. The army website says 20 weeks, plus 9 weeks driver training, for a regular VM. Does anyone know how long this expands into for TA soldiers?

All help gladly recieved,
 
#2
Depends how often you turn in.


After you are a trained soldier, you have start standards training over 2 weekends, they are usually run a couple of times a year at your nearest REME TA unit. Then 2 weeks in bordon on your VM class3/2 course this is run at regular intervals throughout theyear.

VM is a fairly quick trade to train in compared to Armourer, Metalsmith or ReccyMech trades.
 
#3
Probably a stupid question - does that mean trade training is conducted away from the parent unit? I wasn't sure if it would be done by the squadron LAD or not.

Still, the nearest workshop coy's only in Coventry...just about commutable ;)
 
#4
Trade training for VM's is done in house at my unit, as long as the start standards are met then theres no reason to even think of going to Bordon for a Class 3, a Class 2 is what you should be gaining.
It could be argued that having met the start standards there's no need to go to Bordon at all.......

Once you have done your recruits training then the time it takes to get trade trained depends on the potential Cfn, are you a mechanic in the real world ? If so you could be exempt training and granted Class 2.
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
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#6
newy921 said:
VM is a fairly quick trade to train in compared to Armourer, Metalsmith or ReccyMech trades.

Nope, have to disagree on this one. Unless you are a 'vocational' mechanic - that is, you do it for a living, or you are exceptionally keen and have a natural aptitude, it is VERY VERY hard to become a competent VM just on TA time. On Ops those 'hobby mechanics' were at a severe disadvantage compared to the rest - however they will of course always find work doing the routine servicing tasks that still ned to be done.

Metalsmith - even more so, as there is, believe it or not, a bit of 'artistry' and a lot of skill involved in this.

Reccy Mech - you CAN learn this in TA time, and learn it to avery competent level.

BTW, the Army's two biggest pinchpoints for Soldiers, that is those they are most short of, for the entire Army, are Recy Mechs and VMs. So either is a pretty sure way of being able to get on an Op tour as soon as you are qualified - if you want!
 
#7
Bah!

I thought from the subject title that it was going to be one of those "How many TA soldiers does it take to change a lightbulb?" kind of jokes......

oh well :-(

BM
 
#9
...you mean we TRAIN them?

Sorry, some things you cant resist even if you really should.
 
#10
OldSnowy said:
newy921 said:
VM is a fairly quick trade to train in compared to Armourer, Metalsmith or ReccyMech trades.

Nope, have to disagree on this one. Unless you are a 'vocational' mechanic - that is, you do it for a living, or you are exceptionally keen and have a natural aptitude, it is VERY VERY hard to become a competent VM just on TA time. On Ops those 'hobby mechanics' were at a severe disadvantage compared to the rest - however they will of course always find work doing the routine servicing tasks that still ned to be done.

Metalsmith - even more so, as there is, believe it or not, a bit of 'artistry' and a lot of skill involved in this.

Reccy Mech - you CAN learn this in TA time, and learn it to avery competent level.
gettin traded + qualified and getting good at your job have got to be seen as 2 different things.

for example: a TA VM course at bordon is run once every few months, and a 60% pass gets you a class 2 pending. A class3 armr or metalsmith course is run at Bordon once a year and even with a 100% pass mark you still only get a class3. the armr course only has 12 places for sure, think the metalsmith only has 6!!.

OK, trying to become a competent VM in just 2 weeks is impossible, but then again so are all the other trades. The only way people are going to really excel at their trade is by gettin tons of practice in. As a class2 VM they can get good quality trade exp. by workin on their own, solving problems etc and just getting it checked by the class1 when they have finished. The armr or metalsmith is still only a class3 and can`t do squat without having someone hold their hand...... assuming people are working by the book of couse!
 
#13
Thank you all for your replies. I'm feeling it's a bit more practical then I thought, so I'll ask some more when I go in with the enlistment paperwork.

A_Mech and Tiffy_Massive: Your comments suggest that TA VMs aren't particularly well thought of by their regular counterparts. Obviously they don't get as much practice, but are they able (in your experience) to perform a useful mobilisation role? Or they really limited to making tea and stagging on for 6 months?
 
#14
usmarox said:
Thank you all for your replies. I'm feeling it's a bit more practical then I thought, so I'll ask some more when I go in with the enlistment paperwork.

A_Mech and Tiffy_Massive: Your comments suggest that TA VMs aren't particularly well thought of by their regular counterparts. Obviously they don't get as much practice, but are they able (in your experience) to perform a useful mobilisation role? Or they really limited to making tea and stagging on for 6 months?
Most TA VMs are trained by regular PSI's, the fortnight holiday down Bordon is just to confirm its being done correctly..
Any failings in the end product shouldn't be aimed at the TA soldier..
 
#15
TA tradesmen are a mixed bag IMO. We had a Sgt TA VM who could just about be trusted to do 21 day checks in Iraq. He was a 'hobby' mechanic who had no real civvy experience as a VM.
I've seen other TA VMs who were fantastic, better than some regulars.

The trouble is HQ REME TA and/or DEME(A) decided that we should accept non-civvy qualified people as tradesmen in the TA. How they thought a 2 week basic, 2 week class 1 and 2 week Tiffy course would be adequate training is beyond me - I believe this is being addressed now using Eng Stds/competency.

We got what we paid for in the past.
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#16
Nige said:
TA tradesmen are a mixed bag IMO. We had a Sgt TA VM who could just about be trusted to do 21 day checks in Iraq. He was a 'hobby' mechanic who had no real civvy experience as a VM.
I've seen other TA VMs who were fantastic, better than some regulars.

The trouble is HQ REME TA and/or DEME(A) decided that we should accept non-civvy qualified people as tradesmen in the TA. How they thought a 2 week basic, 2 week class 1 and 2 week Tiffy course would be adequate training is beyond me - I believe this is being addressed now using Eng Stds/competency.

We got what we paid for in the past.
Nige is absolutely correct. If you can do it, you will be accepted as a decent VM, but if you can't, you won't - and don't expect 2 weeks Training to alter that.
 
#17
I agree with Nige in parts, TA soldiers and tradesmen are a mixed bag but I have yet to see an excellent one.

I spent roughly 8 months (telic 2 and 3) working with some of the laziest, unprofessional wasters that the TA could offer(IMO). They did nothing but make the regs job even harder, having to sweep up after them was a royal pain in the butt. They do make some of the best barrack room lawyers though.
Its going to take some VERY good TA tradesmen to change my mind.
 
#18
Spent Telic 1 with some TA train mechanics(!) at Umm Qasar. Superb tradesmen,they did this in the real world, but fnck me, what a useless shower of ballacks at anything remotely military. I cannot, for the life of me, see how anybody who does something,anything, some of the time will be as good at it as someone who does it all of the time.
I once had a TA Sgt Tech stmn attached to my unit, but because of his lack of real time knowledge, I had to put my class 2 Crafty on him to supervise his work! Not his fault, he was a good lad, just not enough time doing the job. 8O
 
#19
As a civvy V.M. with op tours and F.T.R.S.under my belt,reg v.m's are a mixed bag too.i train t.a. v.m.'s at our unit,so i also know the quality of what comes through,some are good,some are'nt lol.it all depends if you enjoy what you're doing.i met a lot of reg V.M.'s who did'nt and therefore were'nt so good.if you live in the north of england,i will possibly train you at some point,good luck.
 
#20
Absolutely right ten, the regs are a mixed bag, but we can rectify weakness in regs before the tour (extra work practice during exercises etc.) what we get from the TA is what we're left to train during the tour.

Like I said, many TA blokes are worth their weight in gold, the hobby mechs are worse than useless.
 

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