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ViperStud last won the day on October 4 2019

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About ViperStud

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    Flight Lead

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  1. Oops. He was VLPAD. I meant VLPAD.
  2. Do your homework on VRRAD. A buddy from my guard unit has < 3 years TAFMS left and got a line number, then had a VRRAD gig lined up to get his AGR/AD pension. He was in touch with the VRRAD program manager, was matched to a specific position and just waiting on funding. All of FY20 he has been in a holding pattern, waiting for more VRRAD funds to materialize. It’s not a slam dunk, and might actually be borderline impossible. According to him, VRRAD was abused early on to get a bunch of people into cush gigs at Peterson and a few other bases. Once a bunch of billets were filled and someone did the math, the VRRAD program office realized they were out of funding. They stopped bringing more people back and new applicants are all in limbo.
  3. Amen. I’m a Guard AGR and I’m not too worried about the endgame - there are ways to give me some days off and meet the spirit of the reg while simultaneously helping me out more than MPLP would by making me take 21 straight. Fortunately I’ve got a solid OG who gets it. That said, I’m a big believer of going to the boss with a solution - not just a problem. One of the cleanest solutions is just pushing this chunk of leave to the right when things are back to “normal” and using it for a vacation or to decompress. That ain’t happening in the next two months (her bday), cuz...COVID. It’s just - no one seems to know who to ask. Finance is always in everyone’s shit about leave but God forbid you have a question about leave...then you get crickets.
  4. Has anyone attempted to push MPLP leave (21 days of daddy leave) past the kiddo’s first birthday and, if so, what was the approval/waiver authority? COVID shifts are preventing me from using it since the CC & DO are on opposing shifts and need to be there. Leadership supports trying to push back the window, but (as if on purpose) the MPLP has precisely zero guidance for ETPs or waivers. According to the memo, posted at the beginning of the leave reg, if you don’t take it by the kid’s first birthday it vanishes. ETA: finance already gave me blank stares so I’m waiting on a more in-depth answer than “Uhhh, I don’t know” from the FSS. I figure the bros may be more helpful.
  5. 4-year thread revival! This was over 15 years ago and I was a student so I didn’t have total insight into what happened, so there is that. From what I recall it basically came down to risk management, decision making and SA. His next-to-last flight, he ended up beak-to-beak at Gila Bend doing an SFO the wrong direction. His last flight he landed super-fast and passed the preceding aircraft on the runway. Dude, just go around. He also spent basically all of A-A phase in CAP due to something in TR we never knew about. I’ve seen more dudes wash out for basics - formation and landings so bad they’re dangerous in later stages of the course. It’s ultimately due to poor cross-check and misprioritization. Now that I’m on the dealing end of those decisions, I will say it sucks. Nothing about this job is as much of a downer as telling someone they’re done and the dream is over, even when you know you’re doing it for the right reasons.
  6. This. It’s been 15 years since my first ride in the Viper and I’ve done precisely one form approach for non-training reasons...and we split to land. Practice form approaches if you think it’s valuable, but I can’t think of a solid reason to practice the landings in a modern fighter. Even if you really shit the bed with fuel planning to a socked-in field with zero divert options, I’m pretty sure most of us would make it happen even if we’ve never done one. This same discussion is happening on the OFP Facebook page with dudes pitching in their “form land war stories” (barf). What do they all have in common? F-4s and Thuds. Get over it, dinosaurs.
  7. Using the back gate at DM makes Oro Valley manageable. My wife commuted for two years until she moved to a job off-base. Vail is nice, but it’s remote. Schools are comparable to OV, but Vail has little else around it. OV has the benefit of much more to do and it’s a hell of a lot closer to Phoenix if you’re heading up that way every once in a while. Anywhere with access to I-10 has a pretty straight shot to DM back gate Concur that most people don’t live in Tucson proper. Schools in TUSD have a bad reputation. Areas by U of A have decent homes with a lot to do, but you get a lot less for your money. That and schools drive people to eat the commutes and live in OV, Vail and Sabino Canyon. I know a decent amount of people in Marana and the Foothills as well - longer drive but they think it’s worth it.
  8. If anyone is in AZ and interested in the service information, PM me your email and I will forward. A viewing is planned for Sun night and the funeral is Monday morning in the Tucson area.
  9. They’re not pure kits like FFR, RCR and some others. Some Superformance cars can be bought without the drivetrain, others are sold only as complete cars. I think the GT40 is only sold complete but I did hear a rumor that the non-drivetrain option is possible. Haven’t dug deep with them because I think I’d favor a complete build. Right now I’ve got a 2-month-old; this one is gonna wait a few years.
  10. RCR and Superformance. The Superformance kits are probably a bit better but I’m not sure if they are worth the price bump. Superformance Cobras are a little nicer than my FFR Cobra, but it wasn’t enough to justify the cost difference for me. This is mine just before I finished all the trim, etc. Don’t think I have any recent ones.
  11. The 818 is the only other FFR kit that really interests me going forward, but probably not enough to pull the trigger. Their hot rod and truck kits are good, from what I've heard, but I'd rather pursue a similar real-deal restoration if I were interested in one of those. Maybe slightly more expensive, but worth it. Not a huge fan of aesthetics of the type 65 coupe, so i haven't really looked into it. My buddy built a GTM and for a while the garage at my place had both the GTM and Roadster in it. I'd only recommend a GTM if someone were going to use it primarily at the track. It's unwieldy on the road, the 3rd party support isn't too robust, some parts (like the gearbox) are a pain in the d!ck to track down and you've no shit got the harmonic balancer on the front end of the motor sitting between the driver and passenger. I'm interested in building a supercar (not too soon though since mama just pickled) and from the research I've done I'm leaning hard towards the GT40 kits. More money, no doubt, but I wasn't impressed by the GTM - kit quality, support, parts availability, driveability, etc.
  12. Factory Five cobra. Good kit for a non-pro/mechanic because there are a lot of them out there so the online forums are robust. If you go this route, you’ll get to the point where you do every bit of maintenance on your cars yourself. It’s therapeutic plus there’s a rule where you can’t turn wrenches without drinking beer. The money I save in car MX alone vs the average Joe is just stupid; it’s a racket. My next project will be a GT40. With a little know-how, you can make these things for a lot less than most people think is possible.
  13. Don’t spent LT $$ on a ride. I almost pulled the trigger on a Vette before UPT, but pussed out and kept the old beater mustang til my first ops assignment, where I added a truck. Some luck involved, but some of the more prudent spending decisions I’ve made. Several years later I built a kit roadster that I love to abuse around time with the wife and kiddo. Wait to buy (or build) the fast car until the dent it makes on your bank account isn’t something you think twice about. Also, aside from your house, only buy it if you can pay for it in cash. Car payments are for suckers. In a weird scheme to turn a profit, every car maker (short of the really high-end stuff) makes plenty of each model for consumers to buy. You may regret the impulse purchase, but you’ll always have a second chance if you DON’T make an impulse purchase.
  14. UPT is undermanned. CAF is undermanned, at least with experience. I hear ROK Viper squadrons have mostly wingmen; IPs and FLs fly daily. FTUs are undermanned, people are bailing and we’re making IPs out of people we shouldn’t - small note, the 500hr requirement to enter the Viper IPUG just got changed to 400hrs in the new Vol1. Turns out we don’t have an “experience” problem if we simply redefine what it is to be experienced. I’m 100% in concurrence that we need to nuke any and all PowerPoint/coffee-ranger taskings. I worked a pounder gig and did all the paperwork to turn it into a non-rated position with my CC’s approval - only for him to get cold feet at the end, IMHO because he was staring down a CDI and didn’t want to rock the boat. I was frustrated beyond belief. That being said, deploying is what we do as military peeps. Every person on a BS profile, protected for IDE/SDE/exec, golden boy or in an AETC safe space essentially ups the OPSTEMPO for the bros not in such a position. Think about that for a sec. Your “little corner” of the AF that’s protected from deployments? GMAFB, we’ve all had our instances of the best laid plans getting turned upside down. It’s the nature of AD - we deploy. Want real protection/stability? Punch and join the AFRES or ANG.
  15. Tricare for life is my main concern, but it’s not a binary decision. Stay in - you’ve got it Get out and end up in an AFRES or ANG AGR billet (easy to do these days) - same as being on AD: same pension, same health coverage. Another status in AFRES or ANG: tricare at age 60, other coverage (depending on your job) in the meantime. Many technicians on BCBS swear by it. All the part-timers I know love Tricare Reserve Select - it’s like tricare with a small (compared to ACA) monthly premium. Bottom line - unless you’re considering a clean cut, separating with zero ties to AFRES or ANG, you’ll likely have that Tricare in one way or another. Educate yourself on all of this. Fear of the unknown is what keeps a lot of fence-sitters on AD.
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