Today was graduation. 54 weeks of fun/pain/work/play ending in getting my wings. It was all worth it, I'd do it again if I had to. The graduation ceremony was this morning at 1000. Class 10-05 was sitting in the back in their service dress, just like we were sitting in the back of class 08-05's graduation a year ago. It's weird thinking about all that's happened and things I've done since then, and knowing those guys are all just getting started with it.
We have our graduation dinner t
Hey all, sorry I didn't post more details before this, they've had me flying my butt off since assignment night. The way it works after after your Nav check is this:
4 Formation flights
2 <Simulated> Air Drop flights
2 <Simulated> Air Refueling flights
1 Co-pilot flight
Then you have assignment night. If you assign to a plane which does air drop, then you have 3 more air drop flights, another co-pilot ride, and an air drop checkride. If you track to a tanker, it's t
So we only get 4 "actual" formation flights, by which I mean only four flights where you work just on formation flying. After that, we do simulated airdrop and air-refueling flights, all of which are done as a formation.
We're also in the process of filling out our drop requests at the moment. Should be interesting to see what happens!
Finally go my Nav check out of the way before the holiday break last week. I did extremely well and am very happy, hopefully that will make up for my dumb mistakes on my Trans check! When we get back from the break, it will be straight into formation and Mission Fam (simulated air-refueling and air-drop flights). Only 4 weeks to Assignment night on Jan 29th!
One week until I Nav check. I was flying only once a week for the last few, which sucks because you lose a lot in that week. Checklists don't go as fast, your not as smooth on the landings, etc... but I've flown twice this week so far and will probably fly on Thursday and Friday as well. That's good, because the flying in general goes a lot better, but bad in that it can be draining. Regardless, I'd rather be flying than not. I should two-check on Monday then do the Nav check on Wednesday.
So I'm about 3-quarters of the way through the Nav phase of T-1's now, which, they say, is the "meat and potatoes" of T-1 training. Had my first low-level flight yesterday, it was fun flying 230 kts at 500 feet, but the completely flat terrain of northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas doesn't exactly inspire youtube videos of yanking-and-banking through canyons... not that the T-1 ever would anyway! There's a number of guys in the "senior class" of my flight who are now Nav-check complete, and
Just got back from my cross country. We only get one while we're in T-1's and more than likely it will just be a one-nighter during the week. Some people get to do them over a weekend, by not many. The other student I was with and I went to Omaha then spent the night in Denver. On the way back, we stopped in Rapid City then came home. It was cool getting out of the local area and doing mission planning on the road.
I'm now finished with the first half of the Nav phase of training. I,
Had three rides in the "Nav" phase of training now. Good times! Pretty much every ride in the Nav block is an Out and Back, so now I've had lunch in Lubbock and Ft. Worth with the T-1. I'm planning on going to Abilene on Tuesday 'cuz I hear there's a fantastic steak place open in the evenings called the Beehive. We'll see!
The flights are usually two hours out then 2 hours back. You fly someplace about 30 min away, do a bunch of approaches, then continue on to your "outbase" another 30-4
Had a great flight, only 4 downgrades, and I hook for ground stuff!! I'm a dummy, it was my own stupid fault, but I'm not going into specifics. I just need a swift kick to the jimmy. All my flights have been great up to now, and hopefully that will continue. It just sucks that I get the hook on a check ride! Oh well, guess I have to take my lumps and move on. Ground-88 tomorrow.
The days are still the same. Show at 0530, start briefing between 0600 and 0700, takeoff between
I'm up to 9 flights now, still doing good. I need 4 more flights before my first checkride, the "Transition Check". I went to Amarillo today to do touch-and-goes. Nice, place! LONG runway, but lot's of birds. Which reminds me, I hit a bird a couple flights back, and didn't even know it! We got on the ground and did a walk-around after the flight, and had a big bloody smear across the right of the nose! It didn't do any damage (to us anyway) so it was no big deal.
These 0530 show times
Had my fifth ride today, went really well. I needed to do a "pattern only" flight, so this was it. I got like 10 landings in. The aircraft control is pretty much there, and my SA is definitely bigger than most with my prior Nav time, but it's also definitely not where it needs to be. I'm starting to get to the point where I don't have to worry as much about my aircraft control and can start concentrating more on expanding my SA bubble. I missed some stuff today, but it was good training.
Flying is going well, but I've only had two flights so far. My third will be tomorrow. I'm actually really surprised at how much better I did on my second flight than I did the first. I think it was just not flying for a month that did it. I was by no means perfect, and made some mistakes, but did some of the landings, maneuvers, etc... really well too. I'm not the only one in my class to make these comments either.
The days are long, again. Last week we were in at 0500 every day and us
Had my dollar ride today... very cool! The plane flies a bit easier than the sim, but not by much. It was also nice to see how they do it "on the flight-line" vs. in the sim (checklists, etc...). We took off, went to a MOA for about 50 minutes, then went to McConnell AFB to do touch-and-goes. It's pretty nice to be up at 15,000 feet doing 300 indicated! Seriously cuts down on the drone time between places. We flew for a total of about 3.5 hours, split between two students, which I guess is
Sorry I haven't posted for a bit, but academics is kinda boring to talk about unless your actually here. The stuff I'm learning about the plane, i.e. what all the switches do, how the electrical system works, etc... is pretty cool for me, but I'm sure you would all fall asleep if I started talking about how the DPU interfaces with the EFIS and the IAPS and is controlled by the DCP.
The days are still fairly easy. I got ahead on my CAI's and so got to sleep in until 1130 on Monday
The more academics I do it seems this is a pretty cool plane! A lot more power than the T-6, we're supposed to pull up to 15 degrees nose-up on take-off, and climb at 220 knots! The T-6 was 10 degrees nose-up and 160 kts to compare.
There's a ton more to learn about this plane than there was with the T-6 though, which I guess is to be expected. There's a crap-load of stuff in the checklists you have to memorize too. The T-6 checklist said "Trim - CHECKED" and you just ran the elevator,
Back to doing CAI's again... (that's "computer aided instruction" for those of you who don't remember my posts from 6 months ago... what, you don't study these things??)
The day after track select (yesterday) we showed up at the T-1 squadron at 0830 and got a couple of briefings from the flight commander and the SQ/CC. We'll still have another "15 day program" and be on formal release at first (12 hour days) but we were told it's much more of a "big boy program", i.e.-not as much IP harassme
Got my #1 choice... T-1's!
We had two get T-38's, two got UH-1's (they both wanted them... including one of the Top Sticks!), two got T-44's (they put T-38's first but are happy with T-44's), and the rest of us got T-1's (including the other Top Stick).
We start T-1 academicsat 0830 tomorrow... I'll let you know!
Half-way done with UPT!
My Formation checkride and last Low-Level were yesterday. My complete dork of a Form partner and I did really well, we both received "excellent's". I had about 5 minutes to prepare for my Low-Level after the checkride, but luckily one of my flightmates was cool enough to do pretty much all my flight planning for me. He was already done with T-6's and knew I'd have min-time between my checkride and LL, so he hooked me up!
The LL was fun and quick, no biggie.
So now I get to sit around un
To the Maj at the SUP desk today who reads my blog: here's my next entry, thanks for reading!
I've done one of my two low-levels now and have started the last block of formation flying (4 flights) of my training in T-6's. The low-levels are fairly low threat. You only do two of them, the low-level charts are already made up for you, and an Excel sheet calculates all your airspeeds for you. You fly it at a constant 210 knots ground speed, so just adjust your airspeed to maintain your timing
So once you get towards the end of T-6's (at least at Vance), they have you go over and do a T-38 sim. At this point, no one (except for the Navy guys) know what we'll be flying for Phase III, and supposedly this sim has nothing to do with that selection (no one at Vance even sees the results, they just go to Randolph for statistics). Anyway, it was fun. You take off from Randolph AFB in your T-38, and fly an ILS at 250 knots. Then again at 300 knots. Then again at 350 knots. Over and over
My Form Solo was this morning and it was a blast! It's so much nicer being out in the area with someone to play with (sts). The other plane had an IP and one of my classmates working up to his Form Solo. We did a bunch of lazy-8's while -2 tried to stay in fingertip (5 - 10 feet away), and bunch of pitch-outs and rejoins, then went to Extended Trail (ET) Lvl 3. ET is when both of you have your power set at 85% and -2 tries to stay in sight of lead about 500-1000 away at about their 4 or 8 o
Done with 6 form flights now, and it is getting easier to stay in position. I only flew once last week because I messed up my back working on the house last weekend. I wasn't hydrated enough before flying on Friday and we were doing formation aerobatics. All those G's about made me puke! I didn't though, just kept flying. If you puke on any flights after you solo, it's an automatic hook, and we have had two guys in my flight blow chunks on formation flights because you're always looking aro
My formation flying is getting better, I can hang with lead a bit easier than for the first 2 flights. Our days are shorter now. If we fly first go, then we only have to hang out until second go leaves to go fly, then we can go home. Works out to be about 7 hour days now.
The weekly stan tests are still kicking peoples butts. Luckily I haven't busted one since the first one, but a lot of people have been busting multiples, which means they have to take a retest, then another retest if t
Yup, instrument complete, now straight into Form. I'm not going to lie, the first flight scared the crap out of me. Flying 10 feet off the guys wing with 90 degrees of bank just doesn't seem right (at least not when I'm the guy doing it!). Overall I had fun though, it should be a good time.
Was supposed to have my second Form flight today, but due to the "mishap" we might not be flying for a bit, I don't know. Unfortunately, all we're allowed to say is that both pilots are OK, and the MIB