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Old 11-10-2017, 11:28 AM   #1
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Default Branch transfer Army to Air National Guard

As a commissioned Army NG rotary Pilot is it possible/difficult to transition to Air National Guard fixed wing? I currently fly fixed wing civilian as a cfi already. Any help is appreciated thanks
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Old 11-10-2017, 12:48 PM   #2
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As a commissioned Army NG rotary Pilot is it possible/difficult to transition to Air National Guard fixed wing? I currently fly fixed wing civilian as a cfi already. Any help is appreciated thanks
Possible but not easy. You have to go through all of AF pilot training (UPT) and canít have more than 5 years commissioned or be 30 by the time you start. You need exceptions to policy to get around that, which arenít impossible to get, but units donít want to do it when they have a ton of applicants who donít need waivers. First step is to start rushing units and sell yourself. If you get lucky that can be quick. Or it can take years. Though rated already, you are rushing/applying for a UPT slot and competing against younger civilians, which puts you at a disadvantage. Admin wise, most apps require standard stuff...but you have to take the AFOQT/TBAS (kind of like the AFAST/SIFT) and at some point after you get hired get an FC1 physical. They wonít take your army flight physical. Depending on how you do it you may even have to go through MEPS. I did because I had a break in service.

Bogidope.com and flyingsquadron.com have info on upcoming boards and a whole lot of other good info. Especially as a rated guy, you can rush most units outside of formal meet and greets and/or other times besides when they have an upcoming board. I rushed many units out of the blue and then applied when their boards came up. And you can get hired outside of the formal boards, as well.
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Old 11-12-2017, 07:08 AM   #3
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i know of several Marine Corps RW pilots that are now flying KC-135, definitely possible.
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Old 11-12-2017, 08:51 AM   #4
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i know of several Marine Corps RW pilots that are now flying KC-135, definitely possible.
The USMC/USN (and USAF) helo guys all went through fixed wing training initially, which the AF counts for the sake of transferring wings through an ARB when they come into the ANG, so they don’t have to do UPT again. Maybe T1s, but i know one who went from his helo tours straight to Altus. The army only does straight helos initially in their UPT equivalent. Even army fixed wing, a short course in Cessna 182s and King airs (which just transitioned to some other small single engine in lieu of the 182), and which is taught by contractors, is not recognized by the USAF as legitimate fixed wing instruction or good enough to count for UPT, and full UPT is still required for army guys going to ANG/USAFR, and the associated age/commissioned time in service limits for UPT apply, which is the big limfac for army guys (FWQ did not have those limitations, but that is gone now). I know of a few high time fixed wing army guys who flew a few thousand hours in king airs, Dash 7s, C27s, and UC35s and still had to go through UPT or FWQ (before FWQ was ended) when they switched.

This is why the Army guys (especially commissioned) have such a big disadvantage. It’s 1.5-2 years before the unit gets them back from training. So by the time the ADSC from army flight school is up, most people are 29/30 or older, and unless they were warrants, they are senior captains/majors. Fighter units especially, but even heavy units, don’t seem to want those types, especially since waivers/ETPs are required for UPT. I’m not saying it’s impossible. After a long time rushing it worked for out for me, and I know of a few other army guys (some flyers, some ground pounders) who made it into UPT. I haven’t met one other former army pilot who was commissioned the whole time in the army and who went to UPT. The others i know were warrants first and then LTs when the ANG/USAFR hired them, or ground pounders who could get out at year 4 or 5. Being a senior captain RW only guy is not an ideal position when rushing guard units. But it isn’t impossible, and the shortage is helping.
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Old 11-12-2017, 07:38 PM   #5
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Man it feels like we get a lot of flak from other services as army guys. But I'm still pretty new and in no way trying to start trouble.

Last edited by ArmyFW; 11-12-2017 at 07:54 PM.
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Old 11-12-2017, 10:47 PM   #6
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Man it feels like we get a lot of flak from other services as army guys. But I'm still pretty new and in no way trying to start trouble.
Army aviation is the armpit of all military aviation. Thatís what I was told by one of my teachers in college (AH64 and C12 guy). After 8 years in the army and being around fighter squadrons for the last 8 years, I have an appreciation for that statement, because itís mostly true. Especially as commissioned guys, we donít fly a lot and are never IPs. And we donít have a recognized legitimate fixed wing training program. I kind of see their pointóthe year spent in Air Force pilot training covers a whole lot more than the army fixed wing course. Not sure what this new initial entry fixed wing course entails, but Iíd be surprised if it was as comprehensive as SUPT. Plenty of my AF friends give mad props to the work we did killing stuff in apaches/kiowas, but the AF as an institution doesnít really care for much of what we did in the army, unless it involves going to fly helos in the ANG. Army fixed wing guys donít get much credit when going over to the AF. Not cool, but a fact. Maybe itíll change with the new army fixed wing course, or maybe they will create a short course for army dudes to help free training resources in the Air Force.
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Old 11-12-2017, 10:57 PM   #7
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I guess I see where you're coming from. Where does that leave the warrant officers lol.
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Old 11-12-2017, 11:05 PM   #8
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I guess I see where you're coming from. Where does that leave the warrant officers lol.
I know two former WOs (one became an LT before switching to the ANG) flying F16s and one flying F15s. I know another WO turned LT hired to fly C17s but couldnít pass the AF color vision test so heís back in the army guard flying. Iím sure there are more out there.
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Old 11-13-2017, 06:54 AM   #9
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Army aviation is the armpit of all military aviation. Thatís what I was told by one of my teachers in college (AH64 and C12 guy). After 8 years in the army and being around fighter squadrons for the last 8 years, I have an appreciation for that statement, because itís mostly true. Especially as commissioned guys, we donít fly a lot and are never IPs. And we donít have a recognized legitimate fixed wing training program. I kind of see their pointóthe year spent in Air Force pilot training covers a whole lot more than the army fixed wing course. Not sure what this new initial entry fixed wing course entails, but Iíd be surprised if it was as comprehensive as SUPT. Plenty of my AF friends give mad props to the work we did killing stuff in apaches/kiowas, but the AF as an institution doesnít really care for much of what we did in the army, unless it involves going to fly helos in the ANG. Army fixed wing guys donít get much credit when going over to the AF. Not cool, but a fact. Maybe itíll change with the new army fixed wing course, or maybe they will create a short course for army dudes to help free training resources in the Air Force.
For me, the issue(s) with Army aviation aren't so much the machines and/or training, but rather the Army in general. The degree of BS political correctness has gotten out of hand. Priorities through self-serving upper tiered leadership are whacked. Example: worrying more about flu shot numbers versus concern that it takes someone all day to zero their M4/M16 rifle. The leadership has become insufferable. Standards have devolved into block checking. Anything to make the CR2 data look good is the focus. This isn't the same Army I joined in the late 80s.
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Old 11-13-2017, 07:20 AM   #10
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Army aviation is the armpit of all military aviation. That’s what I was told by one of my teachers in college (AH64 and C12 guy). After 8 years in the army and being around fighter squadrons for the last 8 years, I have an appreciation for that statement, because it’s mostly true. Especially as commissioned guys, we don’t fly a lot and are never IPs. And we don’t have a recognized legitimate fixed wing training program. I kind of see their point—the year spent in Air Force pilot training covers a whole lot more than the army fixed wing course. Not sure what this new initial entry fixed wing course entails, but I’d be surprised if it was as comprehensive as SUPT. Plenty of my AF friends give mad props to the work we did killing stuff in apaches/kiowas, but the AF as an institution doesn’t really care for much of what we did in the army, unless it involves going to fly helos in the ANG. Army fixed wing guys don’t get much credit when going over to the AF. Not cool, but a fact. Maybe it’ll change with the new army fixed wing course, or maybe they will create a short course for army dudes to help free training resources in the Air Force.
All very true. Someone once described the difference between UPS airlines and FedEx to me as UPS being a trucking company that flew planes and vice versa, and the same comparison holds for Army/AF. The Army is a massive ground game with helicopters (Army FW is so miniscule it hardly counts). Witness the flightsuit assimilation police.

I went to Rucker with 3000 hours and a regional/night cargo background, and was stunned at the lack of "aviation" concerns - airspace, ATC, instrument flying. Just a different focus. Here at CBP we see tons of Army guys fail our checkride due to inability to fly an approach or hold.

Back to the OP, I know three RLO's who made the transition to ANG, one vipers and two heavy cargo. All went almost immediately after getting back from IERW, within a year. Probably had started their packets while still there.

I would think that the best transition from ARNG to ANG right now would be through active duty.
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