Air Force A&P Program

Forum for job postings and employment advice.
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

matthew83128

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 22 Feb 2004, 09:30
  • Location: Aviano AB Italy

Unread post13 Oct 2007, 10:54

I'm a ten year F-16 Crew Chief and I have enrolled in the A&P program in the air force, and was wondering if anyone else out there was involved in it or had completed it and how it was for them.
Offline

BG_PILOT_99

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 6
  • Joined: 16 Jun 2007, 18:10

Unread post13 Oct 2007, 16:09

I'm at Viper RTU now, but when I was still a jet engine mechanic on vipers I enrolled in the program, but never completed it. It was a huge pain in the *ss from what I remember. Just my 2 cents.
Offline

Aggressor307

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 11
  • Joined: 01 Jun 2007, 23:23

Unread post28 Nov 2007, 10:53

Huge gaggle f*ck!!!! Better off just doing it thru a school using your TA benefits.....

It's all ass-backwards...
Offline

CCAF

Enthusiast

Enthusiast

  • Posts: 20
  • Joined: 09 May 2006, 18:50

Unread post28 Nov 2007, 16:18

I work with the A&P Program here at CCAF. The major problem with the A&P Program is that people think because they work on airplanes that the FAA should just give them their A&P. That is not going to happen. You have to earn your A&P and the AF program prepares you for that process.

The AF A&P Program might not be the best option for everyone. The FAA can give you your authorizations to test based on Part 65 work experience. If you are a crew chief you can get your authorizations to test from the FAA but are not prepared for the exams. Or for a lot of career fields, they can not get our authorizations this way.

For those not familiar, the Air Force A&P Program is an FAA sanctioned program (the first of its kind) that can be completed completely via distance learning. The program consists of;

1. 3 Specialized Courses (CDC’s) - broken down into General, Airframe, and Powerplant. The courses are developed from the FAA test bank, from which there is no better way to prepare for the FAA exams. These courses currently require an End of Course (EOC) exam, however in March they will be conducted completely online and will not require an EOC

2. On the Job Training – We have taken the Part 147 school curriculum and broken it down to individual tasks which need to be signed off (like 623’s) based on the FAA’s proficiency level (over 75% of these tasks are accomplished and can be signed off by completing the Specialized Courses) We also have evaluated every AFSC and Air Force maintenance course and will sign off tasks based on your experience.
3. You have to have a 5 level in an aircraft maintenance AFSC (2A)
4. 6 Years Tim in Service
5. 30 months documented aircraft experience


So I don’t understand where the major problem is. Everyone who has graduated from the program has said it is the best way to prepare for the FAA exams.

Aggressor307 wrote:Huge gaggle f*ck!!!! Better off just doing it thru a school using your TA benefits.....

It's all a$$-backwards...


Part 147 Schools are not an option for everyone. There might not be a school located close to them, or they might not have 18-24 months to devote to a traditional academic program (you have to go to class everyday). These schools have to dumb down the curriculum to a level for people who have no aircraft experience. You might as well be a plumber before you start one of these schools.

BG_PILOT_99 wrote:I'm at Viper RTU now, but when I was still a jet engine mechanic on vipers I enrolled in the program, but never completed it. It was a huge pain in the *ss from what I remember. Just my 2 cents.


I’m an engine guy too and prior to the AF A&P Program the only way I could get my Airframe authorizations was to go to a Part 147 School. So I should sit through 2 years of school when I could complete the AF A&P program and have my license in six months? That to me would be a huge pain.


So matthew83128 you can listen to two guys that don’t have their license or someone who does.
Offline

Lurch

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 276
  • Joined: 16 Aug 2004, 20:42

Unread post28 Nov 2007, 19:12

After my 4 years in as a Crew Chief, I went to a FAR Part 147 school for 20 months. It's like going to Tech School for almost two years. It wasn't that hard since I had 4 years on the line. The good thing about it is that I ended up with an associate degree in aviation maintenance technologies. College credit and degrees help you out a lot after you get out of the USAF. Even at time I helped teach the classes. Funny to come into class and learn safety wire for a day. You end up teaching the instructor something new.
Last edited by Lurch on 18 Dec 2007, 16:44, edited 1 time in total.
Crew Chief
Torrejon 614th Lucky Devils 87-0248
Homestead/Moody 307th Stingers 89-2054 (Comander's CC)
Offline

Weasel_Keeper

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 363
  • Joined: 24 Nov 2006, 21:18

Unread post28 Nov 2007, 22:10

I bypassed the long schools, I figured the AF had taught me well. After 4 years AD and 4 years ANG I went to our local FSDO and was signed off on experience and handed my copies of the 8610-2 authorization to test forms. Your FSDO is most likely located in an FAA building near your larger airports. I took those forms to Baker's School of Aeronautics in Nashville, TN and enrolled in their quick course that guarantees you will pass the tests. For about $1500 I spent 11 days there and walked away with my A&P license.

While there you don't get to see the sights, you cram your butt off, take a practice test, and then hit the real tests on Airframe, Powerplant, and General. After those are done you study your butt off for the Oral and Practical part. They have the books to study and a great teaching staff to help out. Just by cramming for these tests I actually learned a lot about the stuff most of us have no clue about like fabric coverings and non jet engines.

Some people think you need a 2 year school, but after working aircraft for 3-4 years in the AF most of the stuff is common sense. No A&P mechanic knows everything there is to know, and like my O&P tester told me it's a license to learn because things change all the time. I took my A&P and worked for a regional airline for 4 years before I came back into the ANG to work full time.

Nothing against the 2 year schools because like Lurch said you can get a degree, but just to get an A&P this is the easiest way in my opinion.

I'm sure there are other schools out there like Bakers, but here's a link.

http://www.bakerssch.com/ap.htm?
Cave Putorium!
SoWW #2485
Offline

MechFromHell

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 370
  • Joined: 22 Sep 2005, 14:25

Unread post29 Nov 2007, 01:28

I plan on heading to a school like that in Dallas early next year. I know several people that have the same opinion and insight to this process as Weasel_keeper. No way in hell am I going to waste my time in a 2 year program. I will still probably enroll long enough in the CCAF program to peek at those CDC's.

CCAF wrote:So matthew83128 you can listen to two guys that don’t have their license or someone who does.


Very informative post CCAF, thanks for your input. I have a healthy skepticism about the CCAF endorsed A&P program, as I'm sure a lot of people do. I don't think it is listening to "the wrong people"...as you so eloquently stated. CCAF and AETC in general are notorious for putting layer after layer of red tape on the simplest of programs. Just look at that stupid ABC program that kicked off earlier this year! No new advantages were gained there, the exact same opprotunities are available as before. All CCAF did was put all the info in 1 spot and make it easier to access. We already had that, called the BESO! :evil:
Crew Chief
Mountain Home AFB 2000-2005~91-0370
Sheppard AFB 2005-2009~F-16 Instr
Kadena AB 2009-2015
Holloman AFB 2015-Now
Offline

FlightTestJim

Active Member

Active Member

  • Posts: 157
  • Joined: 05 Apr 2004, 19:29
  • Location: NH

Unread post29 Nov 2007, 23:45

Be careful what you b1tch about--you might just lose it. I have my A&P and had to earn it after leaving the AF. I wish there had been a method of earning it while I was on active duty. I know CMSAF Dave Campanale and a lot of other maintainers worked very hard to get the FAA and the AF to get that program up and running. And for those that aren't near a school or might have families that want attention too, the CCAF A&P program seems like a pretty good option and opportunity--one that if you're considering taking advantage of, do so while it's still offered. There were a lot of similar programs that went by the wayside because the weren't perfect, were too costly, or were underutilized.
And for the record, having an actual A&P license opens up lots of opportunities in the "real world" including many that aren't directly connected with fixing airplanes.
Offline

f16cctul

Enthusiast

Enthusiast

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: 27 Nov 2004, 18:31

Unread post30 Nov 2007, 06:28

A quick note:

Most airline AMT's with five years on the job make as much or more than the engineers developing the repairs they perform.
Also, if it's speed you want go to the cram schools. If it's price that worries you go with CCAF. If you need to get more well rounded in your knowledge, test out of some of the classes and take what you need at a 147 school. Why pay for what you already know? There is no one way that will fill the need for everyone.
f16cctul
Offline

Weasel_Keeper

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 363
  • Joined: 24 Nov 2006, 21:18

Unread post30 Nov 2007, 10:43

Ermm...I was an regional airline AMT for 4 years and the most I made was $15.50 an hour. Most new A&Ps don't get the sweet jobs at a major or a big cherry cargo job at UPS or FedEx where they will make $30.00+ an hour after a few years. It's definately a career field where you have to work up from the bottom to gain experience...hope your job doesn't go away like many do in the airline business...and if you build experience start from the bottom again if you're lucky enough to get on with a major airline.
Most of the AMTs I know that are making any money are contractors who travel all over whenever an airline needs help.

A lot of A&Ps I know will tell you you'll make more money as an auto mechanic.

I now work as an ANG Technician full time and am making almost double what I made for the airline...and I may never need my A&P license again. It's nice to have, and a neccessity if you want to work for an airline or general aviation, but it takes a long time before it pays for itself unless you get lucky somewhere.
Cave Putorium!
SoWW #2485
Offline

f16cctul

Enthusiast

Enthusiast

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: 27 Nov 2004, 18:31

Unread post30 Nov 2007, 11:46

Timing helps but getting your face in theirs and bugging them relentlessly gets you in at the majors and big cargo. Some people don't want to work for the majors. I totally understand why, too. 9/11 and continued uncertainty about oil prices can make you crazy. Many times the regionals are located in an area where the wage is adequate. Maybe big business politics turns them off (it bugs the crap out of me). I complain about that and then I look at what the technicians in my reserve unit go through. It puts it in perspective.
f16cctul
Offline

cutlassracer

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 394
  • Joined: 08 Mar 2006, 01:33
  • Location: Las Vegas, NV

Unread post01 Dec 2007, 03:28

My first job out of the AF was at an FBO in Atlanta. We also sold new Cessna's. I discovered quickly that a Cessna 172 and your average 16/117 are worlds apart. In an FBO, you do it all. Sheetmetal, elec, interior, recip engines, turbo props, etc. Not an afterburning turbo fan in sight. I loved it, but if I had the A&P with the school to go with it would have been alot easier transition. I spent my teen years building hot rods and such, so the engine an electrical I figured out pretty quick. Had a couple of great sheetmetal guys help me out with that, ABDR class only goes so far. Working civil service now and don't require the license, but still my get it just to have. Have a 147 school right across the street from were I live. Just need the motivation.
Torrejon, Homestead, Moody, Osan, Holloman
USAF Crew Chief 89-99
F-16D 90-0794/90-0779
F-117A 83-0807
Offline

VarkVet

Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1449
  • Joined: 30 Oct 2006, 04:31

Unread post01 Dec 2007, 08:59

Nothing substitutes experience or training

I wish HR would wake up to this fact in the aviation world for hiring purposes.

A&P is a great license to have (I don’t have it, took all the Embry Riddle courses) I got my FCC license though … worthless.

When the A&P test still covers recipicating engines, wood, dope, glue procedures, **** off … I ain’t wasten my time.
My eyes have seen the glory of the Lord and the esthetics of the Flightline
Offline

Weasel_Keeper

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 363
  • Joined: 24 Nov 2006, 21:18

Unread post01 Dec 2007, 22:45

Wow Vark, I thought the FCC license was a good one to have (I don't have one). All the avionics folks at the airline I worked at could almost write their own contract because we needed them that much. THEY were making the good money. :)

Knowing recips, wood, fabric, and glue can come in handy with an A&P if you work for general aviation. It's also great to know if you get your IA down the road and can do inspections. There is some money there, but a lot more responsibility.

I do wonder though why they don't do two different tests or licenses for an A&P. One for general aviation and one for the 80% of us who will never touch anything but commercial or jets.
Cave Putorium!
SoWW #2485
Offline

SixerViper

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 441
  • Joined: 05 Jun 2007, 20:32

Unread post02 Dec 2007, 00:35

After 36 years of working on military airplanes (jets and recips) as a pointyhead, the LAST thing I wanted to do was work on airplanes after I retired. I mulled over getting an A&P through CCAF, but never did. Don't miss it at all.

Don't tell anybody, but I once replaced a directional gyro in a Piper Cherokee Six that I was part-owner of. Highly illegal, but somehow or another, I figured out how to do it!! AND, it worked just fine! Even flew some serious IFR after I did it. There's a big, BIG difference between what's behind the panel of a fighter and a GA airplane.

Best of luck to those who want A&Ps
F-106A/B '69-'73
F-105D/F '73-'81
A-7D/K '81-'91
F-16C/D '91-'05
SCUBA bum '05-Present
Next

Return to Job Openings

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests