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Discussion Starter #22
well, 3 months into A&P school and I am loving it.

the commuting and working late is the hard part, but school itself has been a lot of fun. granted this first year is mostly book work, learning about codes, rules, FARs, ect, its exciting to be learning about something i'm interested in.

next semester should be better, but this first semester is really heavy on the books. then next year will be powerplant, so it'll really ramp up from there. :thumbup:
 

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I'm kind of jealous. I have a comfortable office job with a very very large airplane manufacturer ;), but I am feeling the nearing-30 angst as well. Every time I think about looking elsewhere I remember how good I have it and back off, opting to play the lotto instead.

My buddy is an A&P and does very well for himself. He worked at Gulfstream for a few years and racked up experience and certificates/ratings/whateveryoucallthems. Then he moved into the corporate flight dept world, which sounds pretty cake if you can get there.

Good luck
After work at a few drama-filled and Poorly managed Part 145 Repair Stations, I made the move and went out on my own. I'm an MRO engineer.

Best Decision Ever!:beer:
 

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Discussion Starter #25
School has been awesome. I love it so far. Only downside is the working late and weekends and the commuting.

I fired up an IO-540 on a test cell yesterday for the first time, that was a lot of fun. I rebuilt it's alternator and installed some landing lights and a beacon light on the cab to be able to test field voltage on the alternator and buss voltage.

Last weekend this beautiful bird flew into our airport. I was able to walk out onto the ramp and watch it land and walk next to it as it taxied in.



it was funny, my school / airport is 5-10 miles from Travis AFB, there was a C5 in the sky above the B17 as it came in. Old and new in the sky together.
 

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I live in Raleigh a bit closer to downtown from the airport. Only in the past year have I started hearing a new sound as the jets are slowing near town and you have the doppler effect of their sound go by. It's a really deep kind of "whoop" sound versus the normal higher pitched sound that steadily gets lower in pitch as it passes.

Thoughts?
 

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Congrats on the life change, good luck. I'm in the industry, but didn't come from aviation. I was an RF engineering tech, and fell into the Satellite Communications world. I'm now a sales rep for the corporate MRO world. It's a great community.

Most of the MRO guys I talk to complain that they need people, and have a hard time keeping good people. Most of the long term guys I know love aviation, faults and all.

We have hired many A&P guys who were worn out...the physical aspects of crawling around aircraft, the hours could be tough. They are great product support guys, now!

Keep your options open, it could lead you into other aspects of aviation, should you desire to make another change in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #29 (Edited)
Well, into year two, Powerplant.

We're diving right in. The last couple days have been spent pulling a Lycoming O-235 from a Cessna 152. We ran it up prior to disassembly, so it better work when we (my team of 3) get finished tearing it down and rebuilding it, then re-installing. Really fun stuff, especially comparing it to year one, which was almost entirely in a book.





 

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Discussion Starter #30
i must say, i'm elated. today i was given an A&P apprenticeship at Textron Aviation, starting the first week December. so freaking cool to be already starting in the field a year and a half before i finish school, with a guaranteed job when i get my licenses.

man, i just can't even put into words how happy i am right now. not only to be leaving my **** job, but to be doing this so early in my schooling. such an awesome opportunity.

 

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time to start thinking about where you want to go with this. General aviation, corporate, airlines, manufacturing? working for a manufacturer like Textron could work out ok, but it's still GA. but everything is new so you're not getting too dirty. the other end of the stick is turning wrenches at an FBO. you gotta WANT to work GA, there's no money in it. Corporate, airlines or manufacturing is where the money is.

i couldn't do GA. fabric airplanes... brr.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
time to start thinking about where you want to go with this. General aviation, corporate, airlines, manufacturing? working for a manufacturer like Textron could work out ok, but it's still GA. but everything is new so you're not getting too dirty. the other end of the stick is turning wrenches at an FBO. you gotta WANT to work GA, there's no money in it. Corporate, airlines or manufacturing is where the money is.

i couldn't do GA. fabric airplanes... brr.
Long term I am not interested in GA either. Textron will be a good place to start though, this facility works on nothing but the turbine aircraft, so that will give me some very usable experience to move into corporate. And we will just see how it goes, the mechanics here tend to start around 75k per year. if it is a good gig and i enjoy it, 75k a year would make me more than happy with room to grow.

at united after 7 years you make 105k a year. american is similar. corporate can go up into the high 100s and even low 200s if you get into an incredible gig (google for example). for now we'll see how it goes here and take it from there in a couple years.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Well, time for an update.

I passed my powerplant oral and practical exam yesterday. 10 more months of school and one more O&P and my schooling is finished and I can go back to a normal life. Work and school has been pretty brutal on my life, working til 1AM and getting up at 6AM for school during the week. Thankfully I have an amazing wife willing to put up with it all and support me. Honestly I wouldn't be able to do it without her.

Work has been going great. I've been doing everything from tire changes to engine changes. Replacing flight control cables and brake jobs. There is the occasional ****ty day where I do nothing but pull panels or install a toilet, but even those days are far better than anything in my last career.

I was able to go on my first test flight last week. A Beech Premier was having an issue with pressurization, and I changed the primary outflow valve. I am not on the crew that works on the Beech jets, but I was the only one in the shop skinny and tall enough to reach the valve, so I got stuck on the job. An avionics rack in the side for 20 minutes and a big ol bruise from it was well worth the test flight! And it solved the issue, so that was an added bonus.

Really exciting to pass the tests yesterday and start to see a light at the end of the tunnel!

Plus the views at work don't even compare to my old office. :cool:



 

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Discussion Starter #38
Time for another update.

Last Friday I passed my FAA Airframe written exam. Today I passed the Airframe oral and practical tests, and am now a Licensed A&P mechanic.

The last year and a half has been a grind. Getting home from work at 1AM and waking up for school by 630AM was painful. I am so happy the process is over and I can catch up on a little sleep. Well until September when my daughter is born...heh.

I am going to continue to work at the Citation Service Center. I really enjoy the aircraft and the work scope. The shop is a great place to work and the guys I work with are great.

It was a crazy 3 years, I am so relieved to be finished and continue in my new career.

Looking forward to enjoying more views like this from the hangar.

 

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I am so relieved to be finished and continue in my new career.
careers.honda.com

I'll go ahead and say it again. We are hiring for all sorts of spots @ the HondaJet facility. :p
 

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Congrats, and all the best. Yep, catch up on your sleep while you can. :thumbup: :)
 
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