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Doing Well in UPT

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Don't: Ever try to apply ROTC/OTS/USAFA lessons to real life on this board, or around your peers while in any Undergraduate flying programs.

Do: Hang out with your bros on weekends, go to San Antonio/Oklahoma City/Dallas/The Beach/Wherever the fuck people in Mississippi go for fun, drink beer, chase tail, and be a good dude.

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Boldface and ops limits is enough imo. You'll get everything else there.

I saw a dude who washed out who gave 70% I'd say but had a lot of basic aircraft control /SA problems and he had over 10 different instructors to see which matched up best. Point is do your best, help your clasmates, and things will fall into place.

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C130 Driver, sounds like you'll be fine. Chairfly, study, and MAKE SURE YOU GET ENOUGH SLEEP. Chairfly means sitting in a chair and going through the entire sorty. Say every radio call, get one of those giant T-6 cockpit printouts and touch every switch at the right point in the checklist. When you get to a maneuver whether it be a loop or pulling closed in the pattern, recite the parameters to yourself. Study: Know the boldface and ops limits cold before you start academics and you'll be ahead of the game. Once you get that giant stack of pubs, put together the In Flight Guide and then memorize the VFR pattern for both runways and the auxiliary airfield. The first part of your training is very landing pattern centered. I forget the title of the pub, but there is one with all the parameters for everything and techniques as well. This book is your friend. Always take notes during debrief. It shows respect to the IP, and white paper remembers better than gray matter (especially after your second event of the day). It always shocked me to see guys sitting there in front of the desk with nothing to write on. You'll learn less and look like a jackass, so don't be that guy.

According to our base historian, the washout rate for UPT has held steady at around 6%. My class of about 30 lost 3, which was a little high. 1 Medical DQ not related to flying and 1 each in T-6s and T-1s for not being able to land the airplane. So stay in that top 94% and you'll probably be fine. Good luck.

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You'll be fine, Im sure of it. I second the note taking during debriefs...buy a small notebook just for this purpose. I would also write down the things I did right so that I could keep doing those things, but more importantly, the things I jacked up. Before each flight or when chair flying the night prior, I would bust that notebook out & review it. If I screwed it up again on my next sortie, I would write it down again...until I got it right. It's great now looking back in the notebook to see all my rookie mistakes. Also, definitely don't underestimate the power of sleep. You'll have to decide when you need to study a little more versus when to shut the books & sleep. I usually chose the latter, which was worth it for me.

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11-2t-6 11-248 its everything about everything you'll do in the plane, study it and know it cold second only to BF/ops limits. And three on the notebook, you'll retain about 30% of the info from your debreif and the last thing you want to do is get downgraded on another sortie cause you forgot what you were critiqued on last flight.

Edited for buffoonery.

Edited by Fuzz

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11-2t-6 its everything about everuthing you'll do in the plane, study it and know it cold second only to BF/ops limits. And three on the notebook, you'll retain about 30% of the info from your debreif and the last thing you want to do is get downgraded on another sortie cause you forgot what you were critiqued on last flight.

11-248?

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11-2t-6 11-248 its everything about everything you'll do in the plane, study it and know it cold second only to BF/ops limits. And three on the notebook, you'll retain about 30% of the info from your debreif and the last thing you want to do is get downgraded on another sortie cause you forgot what you were critiqued on last flight.

Edited for buffoonery.

That's the one I was thinking of. Thanks for helping the new guys, my life would have been much easier if someone had done the same thing for me.

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I'm headed to UPT this summer and I'm in a similar situation to C130 Driver above. I have just over 100 hrs and I have been reading the 11-248.

My lifelong dream is to be a fighter pilot. Any advice for someone who wants to track T-38s? Thanks.

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Bold Face/ops limits, do millions until your brain hurts. -1 if you feel like you are at level to understand it. If you have some IFR knowledge you can read some of the AF IFR pubs. Don't be a douche, everyone wants to be the next triple ace f-22 driver, not everyone and their mom needs to know it 5 times a day. Stay in the books, help your bros, don't suck. Profit. 

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8 minutes ago, viper154 said:

Bold Face/ops limits, do millions until your brain hurts. -1 if you feel like you are at level to understand it. If you have some IFR knowledge you can read some of the AF IFR pubs. Don't be a douche, everyone wants to be the next triple ace f-22 driver, not everyone and their mom needs to know it 5 times a day. Stay in the books, help your bros, don't suck. Profit. 

Awesome thanks for the advice. Do you know (or anyone for that matter) where I can find a -1? I've searched quite a bit online but no luck so far. 

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Don't bother with the -1 until you get issued one. If you are going to memorize BF/OL, make sure you are memorizing the right stuff. Law of Primacy and all that jazz.

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8 hours ago, tx_flyer said:

Awesome thanks for the advice. Do you know (or anyone for that matter) where I can find a -1? I've searched quite a bit online but no luck so far. 

I don't. I had trouble finding one before I started. Best bet is to find someone who is going through UPT now and ask. 

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Lots of good info on this thread.

I'm looking for some updated info on what we are "expected" to know when we arrive for UPT. Should we already have the boldface/ops limits down cold? T-6 systems knowledge, etc... 

If so, how do we know we have the most up-to-date information? I'll be heading to Laughlin and my Unit (guard) doesn't have anyone down there and we haven't sent anyone there in years. 

Thanks in advance and feel free to add anything else applicable to this thread. 

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10 hours ago, BLT135 said:

Lots of good info on this thread.

I'm looking for some updated info on what we are "expected" to know when we arrive for UPT. Should we already have the boldface/ops limits down cold? T-6 systems knowledge, etc... 

If so, how do we know we have the most up-to-date information? I'll be heading to Laughlin and my Unit (guard) doesn't have anyone down there and we haven't sent anyone there in years. 

Thanks in advance and feel free to add anything else applicable to this thread. 

Dude, just be a good dude, work hard and trim. Help out your bros and use your time in the flight room efficiently. PM me if you want some info on DLF.

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You will end up completely finishing systems in about 2 weeks during Phase I. It goes fast. Like really fast. You won’t be expected to know boldface/ops limits until you hit Phase II (T-6 flightline) around a month into UPT. You can try to find the most up to date T-6 Boldface/Ops Limits before you get down there, but outside of that, there’s really no amount of studying that’s gonna help or get you ahead. Definitely know them cold, verbatim, commas and all by Phase II/Day 1 and make sure the rest of your class does too. It will get you out of blues and into flight suits. 

Once you get your pubs, you can start making your way through the contact portion of the 11-248 and keep your nose in the -1. I would also focus on the 11-2T-6 v3, especially Laughlin’s Sup to the v3. 

Be prepared to feel overwhelmed, but just keep taking bites out of the elephant. Focused studying is way better than just sitting down and trying to read the entirety of the mountain of pubs.

Let me know if you have any questions! Best of luck!

 

Edited by Duck
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I'd say the only thing worth studying beforehand is the boldface/ops limits. Maybe if you have some extra time and are really bored, the Air Force (UPT) traffic pattern and priorities (though it helps to have someone explain it). Outside of that, take care of yourself and your family beforehand, since once you start it'll be busy. You'll have classes on everything you need to learn, as well as your class to study with.

 

Same advice I gave my casual LTs when I was a T-6 IP not too long ago.

 

Edit to add: All learning the boldface beforehand does is free up time so you can learn/study other things when you start instead of worrying about stupid capitalization and punctuation.

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One other thing about boldface.  Learning them with all the punctuation and spelling, being able to regurgitate them at will, dream them in your sleep, etc. are obviously a requirement.  At some point prior to actually hitting the flight line, I recommend being able to actually accomplish them.  Perhaps that sounds obvious, but trust me... there is a very big difference between being able to write them or recite them verbally while at attention in a stand up brace and actually putting in control inputs and actuating switches.

Paper trainer, cockpit mock-up, sim.... whatever is available.  Drill them as hard as you do learning to write them properly.  Nothing has to be done at lightning speed.  Slower (and correct) is usually 'mo better.  It's okay to walk down the hill and fck them all.  But, when you need to do them in the sim or the aircraft for real, you will be far more effective if you've actually reached in the right part of the cockpit and actuated the appropriate controls as often as you write them out.

Edited by JeremiahWeed
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Can someone in the know let me know how exactly airframes get selected?  I am in UPT and they are being about as opaque as possible with the process.  Excruciating detail is preferred.  

For example: 

I know that academics are about 10% of what is considered.  But are they considered on a straight points scale i.e. if the first person is at a 100, last person is 98, and everyone else is 99 then the last person gets 98% of the credit of the first person and the difference in academics is negligible?  Or it could also be on a forced distribution where the last person is a 0/10 and the first person is a 10/10 regardless of their relative scores.  Or some other system.

Furthermore, how are U,F,G,E grades quantified?  Are they given point values for each daily ride i.e. 2 3 4 5 and then summed up and that's your score?  Or is there something else at work? 

When do we find out how we are doing relative to others?  Do they ever just put up a roster with everyone's names and scores kind of like they put of the list of who made the football team in high school?  Yes the IPs give feedback when I ask how I'm doing but it's generally just stuff like "you're doing fine" or "you could be doing better at X".

Finally, is your "raw" score from phases 1 2 and 3 the only thing they consider?  Does a person who isn't the sharpest but works hard and help others truly have a better shot at what they want than a person who is not a team player and screws over their classmates, but performs better?

Is there any consideration taken for people who started at different levels?  For example if a brand new Lt and an Airline pilot with 6000 hours both are at the same level at the end of phase 3, but the person with a lot of hours caught on faster earlier due to their experience, will they take that into consideration?  Or is it strictly your scores?

Do they take into account how "good" a class is?  Like if Vance says they have a ton of high performers for 18-07, while Laughlin says their class 18-07 is not quite as great, then Vance will get a "better" drop?  Or are the drops blind to the perception of how good the class is?

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On 12/8/2017 at 9:18 PM, TheLaughingCow said:

Can someone in the know let me know how exactly airframes get selected?  I am in UPT and they are being about as opaque as possible with the process.  Excruciating detail is preferred.  

For example: 

I know that academics are about 10% of what is considered.  But are they considered on a straight points scale i.e. if the first person is at a 100, last person is 98, and everyone else is 99 then the last person gets 98% of the credit of the first person and the difference in academics is negligible?  Or it could also be on a forced distribution where the last person is a 0/10 and the first person is a 10/10 regardless of their relative scores.  Or some other system.

Furthermore, how are U,F,G,E grades quantified?  Are they given point values for each daily ride i.e. 2 3 4 5 and then summed up and that's your score?  Or is there something else at work? 

When do we find out how we are doing relative to others?  Do they ever just put up a roster with everyone's names and scores kind of like they put of the list of who made the football team in high school?  Yes the IPs give feedback when I ask how I'm doing but it's generally just stuff like "you're doing fine" or "you could be doing better at X".

Finally, is your "raw" score from phases 1 2 and 3 the only thing they consider?  Does a person who isn't the sharpest but works hard and help others truly have a better shot at what they want than a person who is not a team player and screws over their classmates, but performs better?

Is there any consideration taken for people who started at different levels?  For example if a brand new Lt and an Airline pilot with 6000 hours both are at the same level at the end of phase 3, but the person with a lot of hours caught on faster earlier due to their experience, will they take that into consideration?  Or is it strictly your scores?

Do they take into account how "good" a class is?  Like if Vance says they have a ton of high performers for 18-07, while Laughlin says their class 18-07 is not quite as great, then Vance will get a "better" drop?  Or are the drops blind to the perception of how good the class is?

Needs of the AF, timing, performance, leadership perception, FLT/CC discretion, luck. Not necessarily in that order. Metaphor for assignments the rest of your career. Someone who is not a team player and screws over their classmates will have a hard time as your reputation follows you to the next MDS no matter what you drop. Focus on "excruciating detail" in your study/flying and worry less about the drop process.

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On 12/8/2017 at 9:18 PM, TheLaughingCow said:

Can someone in the know let me know how exactly airframes get selected?  I am in UPT and they are being about as opaque as possible with the process.  Excruciating detail is preferred.  

For example: 

I know that academics are about 10% of what is considered.  But are they considered on a straight points scale i.e. if the first person is at a 100, last person is 98, and everyone else is 99 then the last person gets 98% of the credit of the first person and the difference in academics is negligible?  Or it could also be on a forced distribution where the last person is a 0/10 and the first person is a 10/10 regardless of their relative scores.  Or some other system.

Furthermore, how are U,F,G,E grades quantified?  Are they given point values for each daily ride i.e. 2 3 4 5 and then summed up and that's your score?  Or is there something else at work? 

When do we find out how we are doing relative to others?  Do they ever just put up a roster with everyone's names and scores kind of like they put of the list of who made the football team in high school?  Yes the IPs give feedback when I ask how I'm doing but it's generally just stuff like "you're doing fine" or "you could be doing better at X".

Finally, is your "raw" score from phases 1 2 and 3 the only thing they consider?  Does a person who isn't the sharpest but works hard and help others truly have a better shot at what they want than a person who is not a team player and screws over their classmates, but performs better?

Is there any consideration taken for people who started at different levels?  For example if a brand new Lt and an Airline pilot with 6000 hours both are at the same level at the end of phase 3, but the person with a lot of hours caught on faster eaer due to their experience, will they take that into consideration?  Or is it strictly your scores?

Do they take into account how "good" a class is?  Like if Vance says they have a ton of high performers for 18-07, while Laughlin says their class 18-07 is not quite as great, then Vance will get a "better" drop?  Or are the drops blind to the perception of how good the class is?

Do my best to get everything.

The way scoring works is based off of standard deviations and Z-scores.  Now please bear in mind I am not a math major so I may confuse some terms.  In essence the MASS (some black magi formula) finds the standard deviation of a class and creates a bell curve.  From that bell curve it assigns scores based on how far above/below the center of the curve you are.  Now How it determines the point value of each persons score is unknown to me (meaning 75 pts is not the "max", it varies class to class and I have no clue why).  So for example, a class whose average score is 96 may have a person with a score of 99% get the highest points (call it 69) and the lowest score of 93% will get the lowest at 30.  Everyone else gets something in the middle based on their distance from the center of the bell curve.  Same process applies to daily rides and check ride scores.

U/F/G/E grades.  So individual grades, i.e. how well was a landing or specific maneuver, are graded based on CTS (course training standard) which is found in the syllabus.  It defines ranges and parameters that a student must meet in order to receive a G (good).  A pattern for example is to be flown -0/+10 kts or airspeed.  If the student does this they get a G, if they do really well they get an E, if assistance is required they get a F, if unsafe/unable it's a U.  Overall grades however are up to IP discretion.  Therefore if your IP thinks that for where you are in the program that you did really well then you might get graded an E.  If you suck, enjoy your taco salad (U).  What this means is you can have a grade sheet of mostly U's (say it's your second ride) but you seem to be picking things up and are pretty sharp, then your IP may give you an overall E. 

Yes individual grades have points associated with them (1-5 if I recall correctly, 1 being a NG and 5 being an E).  They all get compiled at the end and run through the MASS.  Just like your academics it's based off of standard deviations and Z-scores.  Only difference is that there is no penalty for attempting/not attempting a maneuver as it averages out your gradesheets.  For example, you do a pattern only where 20 items are graded.  Those 20 items are worth up to 100 total points (20*5=100).  You average out to mostly Fairs (3 pts) for a grand total of 60 points or 60% of available points.  Your bro goes out and does MOA work and has 40 items graded, but averages a Fair rating for most of them earning 120/200 points, also 60%.  So in the end it's really points earned/points attempted, then run through the computer (black magic).

At UPT (Vance, Laughlin, Columbus), Phase 1 and 2 scores affect your Track Select.  Phase 3 is separate.  At Sheppard (I think) they all factor into the overall drop.  Flt/CC's have a 20% say in someones final score.  It's referred to as Flt/CC ranking and is a way for them to help out someone who has been a solid bro and maybe bump someone down who has been a jack wagon.  So yes, working hard and being a bro does help you out, your IP's WILL notice.

As for experience, like all good answers it depends.  Ive taught a kid who had 4700hrs when he showed up and he made UPT his b**ch, but he was super humble and a great kid, everyone loved flying with him.  Had another student with 1300hrs who everyone hated.  And when IP's sit down they do take experience into account.  But in all honesty once people hit instruments it evens out, and if someone has a lot of experience, formation evens them out.  I wouldn't worry if you have some high time guy in your class.  They will not be the reason you don't get what you want, you and your attitude will make/break you.

The last question, I don't know.  That's more of a phase 3 question (I taught T-6's). 

Hope this helps.  In the end enjoy UPT man, getting all wrapped around tiny shit like the MASS and individual grades will just take your focus off flying.  Relax and have fun, it was one of the worst/best years of my life.  You will have some amazing experiences and some serious bad days, don't lose sight of the prize, it's all worth it.

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On 12/8/2017 at 8:18 PM, TheLaughingCow said:

Do they take into account how "good" a class is?  Like if Vance says they have a ton of high performers for 18-07, while Laughlin says their class 18-07 is not quite as great, then Vance will get a "better" drop?  Or are the drops blind to the perception of how good the class is?

I was a Phase III IP in T-38's and a flight commander so I'll bite at this question.  In short, no, for the 10 or so classes I assigned aircraft to, I only saw 1 horse trade between bases because of a "good" class.  The planes are pretty evenly distributed among the bases, we will make phone calls to get our #1 guy what he wants most of the time.  Then, everything YoungandDumb said happens, the the FLT/CC puts his ranking into the Mass 7-12 times and gets the results, matched to airplane, to the Squadron CC.   I had classes that all deserved fighters, I had classes where 2 of 8 deserved fighter, and that wasn't what was delivered.

We didn't consider the T-6 performance into the Mass in T-38's, different phase, different results.  

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21 hours ago, matmacwc said:

I was a Phase III IP in T-38's and a flight commander so I'll bite at this question.  In short, no, for the 10 or so classes I assigned aircraft to, I only saw 1 horse trade between bases because of a "good" class.  The planes are pretty evenly distributed among the bases, we will make phone calls to get our #1 guy what he wants most of the time.  Then, everything YoungandDumb said happens, the the FLT/CC puts his ranking into the Mass 7-12 times and gets the results, matched to airplane, to the Squadron CC.   I had classes that all deserved fighters, I had classes where 2 of 8 deserved fighter, and that wasn't what was delivered.

We didn't consider the T-6 performance into the Mass in T-38's, different phase, different results.  

Do students get a preference at T38 / T1 after T6 or is it all picked by performance and IPs? 

Is the likelihood of picking up a C17 or other heavy probable if that is a students preference? I'm aware of needs of the AF and such but wondering how many people who come in looking for heavies get heavies. Assuming many students come in wanting to fly fighters or bombers. 

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You fill out a preference sheet a week or so before the drop.  Once your scores are computed we try and get the #1 dudes his #1 choice and/or maybe #2 if it was close.  Then its just a matrix, for instance, if you were #3, I would go through the list after the first two, and match him with the highest ranking airplane he has.  It could be his #3 choice, it could be his #20. Bottom line, finish high enough and you'll get your choice, or go ANG.

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