Discussion in 'Aviation' started by spartan300, Jun 26, 2007.

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  1. My uncle keeps telling me to go for a trade or try to be a mechanic in the R.A.F do any of you know if being a mechanic in the R.A.F is an enjoyable experience or is it a boring job just fixing jets all day long.
  2. Spartan,
    I'm not groundcrew although I'm in the RAF and will try and provide some unbiased views.

    In my experience as aircrew, our groundcrew are the salt of the earth and respected by the vast majority us. The numbers of trades has recently been rationalised to 2 main types, Aircraft Technician (Mechanical) and Aircraft Technician (Avionics). Other trades are involved in the non flying stuff like comms and computers.

    Like any job in the services, you'll get out of it what you put in. Generally speaking the quality of life in the RAF when at home is better than that of the other 2 services. This is partly because we need to operate from well founded locations and also because we have always placed a strong emphasis upon investment in good accomodation etc for our guys.

    Your life as groundcrew will be dependent upon what aircraft type you operate on. Helo guys are required to deploy for extended periods in austere locations similar to their Army brethren. Fast jet and multi-engine guys tend to operate from more well founded locations. Contrary to what many in the Army would have you believe, 5-star hotels are not the norm and tented accom common. Whatever type you end up on however you'll spend long periods deployed. However, these can be the most satisfying times when you work in small close knit teams to meet very tight op deadlines.

    Whatever trade you join, there'll be very good opportunities to gain some excellent civilian recognised qualifications and experience. The other 2 services offer similar advantages from this respect although the lifestyles obviously differ considerably (although not as much as they used to). If you want to work on aircraft, I'd strongly recommend the RAF but don't discount the Army and RN either.

    My advice would be to arrange some visits to RAF units through your local AFCO. For more info on RAF careers, check the website here.

    I'm sure other posters will give their opinions on the Army and maybe the RN.

    Whatever your choice, good luck!

  3. If you have the quals to be an aircraft tech then go for it matey. I would have done, but I don't. :p
  4. I looked into the REME to join as a tech on Helicopters - it looked like a really good choice, however they are massively over-subscribed right now and it won't be a quick entry (you might have to wait, should you have the Quals and pass selection, at least 6-8 months).

    I know some blokes who I work with now who are ex-RAF techs, and they say that they really enjoyed their time in, and i'd agree with M_M's comment on living standards - being an Army pad brat and having seen RAF pads, the RAF generally have much better camp facilities and Accom.
  5. If you're joining the ranks, join the RAF. If you're joining as an officer, join the Army.

    If you join the RAF as a tecchie then aim for helicopters if you want medals, fast jets if you want comfy hotels and rates.

    Sounds so simple doesn't it!

  6. Eh?? If you think it through, its probably less boring than flipping burgers all day or fixing cars all day or delivering letters all day or.... I could go on. The point is, if you have the quals, go for a techie trade as the money is so much better, if not then go for one of the support trades - either way, get yourself in and see a whole new world of experiences opening up for you. If you are serious about joining the RAF, go for it and good luck to you!
  7. I know this may sound stupid but by rates you mean money right also what type of medals could you get by being a techie for helicopters.
  8. I think bat-crab is suggesting that helicopter techies do more out-of -area tours than any other techies, the medals would be the same as everyone can get - Telic and the Operational Service Medal for Afghanistan. Rates is extra money for when you go away to hot and sandy places!
  9. But on your other thread you want to be a para!!??
  10. I don't know what to do I wanted to be a para but the R.A.F also sounds interesting I am really confused about which one to choose I am leaning slightly towards the R.A.F at the moment.
  11. You know what? Nip down to your friendly Armed Forces Careers Office (they're in the phone book) and get a load of advice from them. THEN come on here and get a bit more background info without the "party line" which, unfortunately, the AFCO people have to spout.