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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 1/22/2006 1:43:53 PM EDT
What are some good western states that have opportunities for pilots who want to fly professionally? I would really like to live in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Utah or possibly Colorado. I want to stay in the west, not too fond of AZ, used to live there (hated it). No commiefornia!!!! It flying possible/ likely in those location or should I pick a new career? I haven't yet been to college, this is why I'm asking.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 1:49:51 PM EDT
Arizona is full anyway
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 1:53:33 PM EDT
I'd do some research and get the facts yourself, not trust people you dont know on the internet. Look into the cost of everything, what the job market is like, and how good of a pilot you are.


Since 9/11-when alot of airline pilots lost their job or took huge paycuts, lost pensions and retirement funds, your best be would be to go to college, become a military pilot and get free training, then become an airline pilot because hopefull by then there will be a open market for pilots wanting to fly commercially.

Or you could fly for a private company/celebrity. Either way, look into things in-depth.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 1:55:17 PM EDT
be prepared to starve for many years before you are able to eek out a modest middle class income.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 1:56:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/22/2006 1:56:50 PM EDT by CSM]
If you want to fly for a living, and make more than 20-30k/yr instructing in a POS 172, you will move wherever they tell you to. And this is after you get your 1000-2000hrs total time, and AT LEAST 500multi. Private, Instrument, Commercial, Multi, CFI, CFII, MEI, & (preferred) ATP.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:04:52 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CSM:
If you want to fly for a living, and make more than 20-30k/yr instructing in a POS 172, you will move wherever they tell you to. And this is after you get your 1000-2000hrs total time, and AT LEAST 500multi. Private, Instrument, Commercial, Multi, CFI, CFII, MEI, & (preferred) ATP.


Who's they?
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:07:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By snipAR_15:

Originally Posted By CSM:
If you want to fly for a living, and make more than 20-30k/yr instructing in a POS 172, you will move wherever they tell you to. And this is after you get your 1000-2000hrs total time, and AT LEAST 500multi. Private, Instrument, Commercial, Multi, CFI, CFII, MEI, & (preferred) ATP.


Who's they?



Your boss. Mr. Corporate, Mr. Cheap'O Commuter Airline, Mr. Real Airline.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:11:11 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/22/2006 2:11:27 PM EDT by PeteCO]
Check out the forums at flightinfo.com.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:33:02 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/22/2006 2:33:20 PM EDT by CSM]
I should elaborate. The airlines are based of seniority, the guys that have been hired since you were hired are lower in the pecking order than you. The most senior guys get to pick the best domiciles, Denver, for example, is harder to get at United than Chicago. The more senior guys get the best lines of flying, they fly the best hours and fly the better trips. As a rule, nobody gets Thanksgiving off.

Corporate flying can be ok, but usually you are still on call for some rich guy who usually dosen't give a shit about weather, your christmas, FARs, or much he drinks on his airplane.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:37:24 PM EDT
Join the Air Force or the Navy as an officer and get a job flying transport/patrol aircraft.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 2:44:17 PM EDT
I would advise against an aviation career right now. My buddy just graduated top in his class from the University of Oklahoma where he worked as a flight instructor. He got hired on with Mesa Airlines and went to trainin in AZ then to Sim training in Denver where he was also top of his class. He quit the day before he was so sign his life away and moved back. Everyone is getting furloaded now and it doesn't look promising for 'new' guys.

If you really want to fly move to Alaska and fly for Penn Air or Hageland where you can at leas have some fun
Just my .02
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 3:34:28 PM EDT
oh,damn.What re some other good careers to look into?
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 3:51:37 PM EDT
I'm working on my flight instructor certificate and my PhD in neuroscience at the same time. The CFI is taking the back burner to the PhD right now, I want to finish in May. I'm going to try to instruct and work in a lab (I can arrange it here) once I finish both.

A flying career would be brass tacks, but something seems to always be whispering, "postdoctoral fellowship, postdoctoral fellowship.."
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:55:16 AM EDT
Geez,

I just love these posts that say “join the military, get free pilot training, then join the airlines. Makes it sound as easy as selecting dessert from a menu.


These folks have obviously never done this. I’ve gone through USAF Undergraduate Pilot Training, and here’s a brief overview, circa late 1980s.

Wanna be a pilot, gotta be an officer, which means 4 years of college. The USAF has almost always had a huge surplus of pilot wannabes versus pilot slots, so they make it damn difficult for them. I was offered a full scholarship five times, if I would agree to take a non-pilot job. I refused, which sucked because I had to work full time while taking a full college course load.

During your military training, prior to acceptance to UPT, you undergo numerous screening programs, designed to eliminate pilot candidates. If your GPA was below a 3.0, the USAF didn’t want you for any reason. Below a 3.5 and you wouldn’t get a flying job. ROTC boot camp washed out anyone who “failed to exhibit leadership and professionalism”. My flight screening program consisted of only five hours flight time to solo a trashed Grumman AA-1B from a short, potholed runway chopped out of a forest. (Cessnas just about fly themselves, the Grumman was a squirrely POS). (Oh, and that huge bumble bee in the cockpit on my solo flight made things interesting).

My freshman year in ROTC, we had 52 pilot candidates. Toward the end of the senior year, there were 16 survivors. My unit received only 4 pilot slots, so 12 guys who had busted their ass for 4 years, passed every hurdle the USAF threw at them, got navigator slots, non-flying jobs, or never entered active duty.

So, I exit college with a 3.5, and a lieutenant’s bar, something to be darn proud of.. Off to UPT, where you get treated like shit for your entire stay. Until you actually graduate UPT, you’re dogshit, and other pilots will remind you of that daily. The program used to be 13 months, but cost cutting dropped flight hours and crammed everything into 11 months. The instructors say you have to meet the same requirements, but you have less flight hours to do it.

UPT was tough. First three months were academics. Scheduled 12 hours a day plus 4 hours homework. We complained that the reading assignments for one day of classes was over 300 pages, and were told STFU. They said it was possible that the entire 60-person class would graduate, which was a lie. You never know the passing score of a test until the day of the test. This was because they frequently changed the passing mark to eliminate their desired number of students. Miss the passing mark (usually 90-95%) by one point, and you wash. They wanted about 45 students to reach the flying part of training.

So, I pass all the academics and get to the flightline. 50 guys show up, and find there are only 30 chairs/desk positions. Not too hard to figure at least 20 guys are gonna get washed pretty quick. The T-37, in the desert, in August is a miserable flight. The cockpit can reach 120 degrees, the air conditioner is worthless at low altitudes, and the nav instruments were circa 1950s. The jets break often, but you still fly if at all possible.

And you have to meet higher goals on every flight, which really sucks if you’re one of the poor bastards selected to fly twice a day. Your instructor, like my first, may be a supreme a$$hole, stuck flying students caused he crashed a C-130 previously. Kinda hard to learn when all your instructor does is constantly swear at you and everyone else on the planet.

God help you if you were male and got a female check-pilot. The slim few USAF female pilots were treated worse than dogshit by the male pilots, and they retaliated whenever possible. ( I hope this has changed by now). Fail to meet a flight’s requirements, you got two more chances, then you washed out. And airsickness was vaguely interpreted. Three instances and you’re gone. My good friend got washed because he burped really loudly, nothing came up, but they still called it airsickness, when it was just evolved gas. And when you wash, it’s quick and dirty. Lots of times the class would show up at the flightline at 0400, only to realize a good buddy was missing. If the USAF had already spent lots of $$$ on your training, AND you had a degree in something useful like engineering, they’d keep you active duty and stick you behind a desk for 6-8 years. If not, you’d be made a civilian inside a week.

So, I graduated UPT, got qualified for Fighter/Attack/Recon, and got FAIPed (sounds like RAPED). First-Assignment Instructor Pilot, and got sent back to the same dirty, dust-bowl, one-horse town I thought I’d just escaped from. Only one guy (his dad was a General) in my class got a fighter. A few crappy King Air transports, and everyone else gets the shit aircraft other pilots are escaping from, tankers, B-52s, and trainers.

And the news got better. I graduated at a time when the USAF was downsizing their aircraft squadrons, so there was a glut of pilots. We were told quite clearly that our first assignment would be flying, but the second will be non-flying, and the third will probably also be non-flying. Pretty damn tough to get back into the cockpit after 8 years behind a desk.

Oh, and if you mentioned you wanted a transport aircraft, to later fly for the airlines, that was a serious mistake, which would get you increased scrutiny and tougher check rides. Best to never mention that to anyone.


After my non-flying assignment, I got out of the USAF, but didn’t have enough flight hours to get into the major airlines, plus I hadn’t been flying in 2 years. The airlines were the only ones paying enough to offset the negatives of a flying career. Commuter and cargo airlines paid crap with few benefits, and instructor pay was minimum wage. I’m still in aviation, but not as a pilot. It can be a fun job, but it’s a lousy way to make a living. The corporate pilots had it good for a while, but the airline layoffs are making it tough on them too. Unless you’re in a pilot’s union, job security is almost zero. Not a career I’d pursue if I had a mortgage or family to support.


Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:40:03 AM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 2:55:28 AM EDT
I had a mother contact me once about her son getting started for a "good paying" aircraft mechanic job. I explained that if that is what he was looking for he should concider working on high-end cars or city busses or the like as those mechs made more money with less training and liability than aircraft mechs. She was stunned that at the time I was taking home something like $9 an hour running my own aircraft repair facility with three years of college behind me and no hope for much more in the future. Flying is even worse because of the simple fact that you don't have to pay a lot to get people to do what they love. I'll bet the oil-boy for the Swedish bikini team works cheap too.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 3:25:03 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 4:55:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/23/2006 4:55:57 AM EDT by John Parker]
"If you really want to fly move to Alaska and fly for Penn Air or Hageland where you can at leas have some fun"

How much does Hageland and Pen Air start off paying? Any idea
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 11:33:17 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DoubleFeed:

Originally Posted By snipAR_15:
oh,damn.What re some other good careers to look into?


I'd call A&P training a good bet, as it covers parts of 51 different career fields.



It may cover part of 51 different career fields, but none of them well enough to land a decent paying job. If you're going to have to pay for school, decide which direction you want to go and stick with it.

Aircraft maintenance may have been a good field to get into years ago, but there's no money or security in it now...especially for someone fresh out of school.

Link Posted: 1/23/2006 11:41:59 AM EDT
It aint easy no matter where you are. Im one of the above aformentioned CFII's taking home less than 25k a year just trying to get fucking hours.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 11:56:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/23/2006 11:56:24 AM EDT by DoubleFeed]
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:05:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By snipAR_15:
oh,damn.What re some other good careers to look into?



Become a crop duster
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:09:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DoubleFeed:

Originally Posted By Stasher1:

Originally Posted By DoubleFeed:

Originally Posted By snipAR_15:
oh,damn.What re some other good careers to look into?


I'd call A&P training a good bet, as it covers parts of 51 different career fields.



It may cover part of 51 different career fields, but none of them well enough to land a decent paying job. If you're going to have to pay for school, decide which direction you want to go and stick with it.

Aircraft maintenance may have been a good field to get into years ago, but there's no money or security in it now...especially for someone fresh out of school.


That's true, but it is becoming accepted that you can't stay in one field your entire life anymore. People may have to change to a completely unrelated field as their old one becomes obsolete, several times in a lifetime. Is there a better way to maximize your options?



Very true, so why start out in a field that's already full of experienced workers who can't find a decent paying job? There's a bunch of us out here doing jobs outside the aviation field so we can actually work and pay our bills.

My brother-in-law is a plumber in MA. He's making decent money and it's work that can't be farmed out to China/Mexico/India/etc. Might be an option...if you can deal with the nasty side of it.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:18:58 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:30:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/23/2006 12:31:59 PM EDT by Stasher1]
Actually, I'm using skills I learned before I got involved in the aviation industry, for the most part. I spent the past several years as a sheetmetal/structure mechanic on KC135 and C-130 aircraft, but I've also worked in machine/fab shops, mechanical assembly, metal forming, etc. since I was in my late teens/early twenties.

Aircraft maint. wasn't a career choice for me...I just sorta fell into it.

Right now I'm working as a welder at a local manufacturer, tig and plasma arc.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:33:05 PM EDT
I went down the same path. Got my private as soon as I could afford it. Looked at all branches of the armed services but realized it was to uncertain to get a pilot spot. Looked into the other route, CFI to buld hours etc but this was after Sept 11th and I had former regional and former newbie major pilots working as CFI's. I was poor long enough through school.

I ended up renting planes then buying my own, see my Pic<-----. Now I take off at my own leisure
and just fly wherever. A lot of times I take off and don't plan on where I am going till I am airborne.. (Yes I have plenty of fuel etc). Want to go down to the flats and buzz the fisherman or go do touch and gos in the bay?

Unfortunately aviation is to much of an uncertain field. Check out flightinfo.com as mentioned, great info there.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:38:35 PM EDT
It is easy to make a small fortune working in aviation these days.......
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Just start with a large fortune


Seriously, the golden days of aviation careers is history now. You can make more income, have better job security and retirement driving a truck as opposed to flying a plane these days.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:39:49 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 12:50:40 PM EDT
Got my A&P six years ago.Haven't used it in four and a half.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:07:27 PM EDT
I started flight school with a buddy. We both got are private and instrument ratings. I fell on hard times and had to quit flying for a while. He got his CFI and ATP he later went to work for Southwest. After 5 years of flying with them he quit.

He now makes a great living flying a two seat ultralight and giving tourists a ride at the beach. Sightseeing, what was old is new again. Bikinis, babes, new house and car. Moral of the story as told to me (over a few beers) work for yourself or starve in the airline business.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:11:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bwyatt:
Got my A&P six years ago.Haven't used it in four and a half.



Yep got mine 15 years ago havent used it in 13, pretty sad.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:43:56 PM EDT
Here is a deal definately not offered in any aviation career choice.

If you are able bodied, have good mechanical aptitude, and are willing to work,

I can steer you to a job that will provide:

1. Work
2. Training
3. Decent pay
4. The ability to own your home in 8 years or less
5. Have fring bennies that include hunting.
6. Can help you get a professional license
7. The job can not be outsourced

Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:58:10 PM EDT
Got my A&P 14 years ago never really used it.
I do use what I learned from getting everday and everyday since.
And its cool to say, Im an A&P.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 1:58:55 PM EDT
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