Army Flight School

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Senior Master Sergeant
Sep 10, 2006
Jacksonville, NC
Can anyone tell me what the syllabus is like for Army flight school? I tried finding it online w/o luck. It's very common rumor on the Navy side of the house to think that Army guys aren't trained much in IFR flight - but nobody knows what the actual syllabus consists of. Just wanted to clear this up because I can't imagine that the Army trains aviators w/o teaching a good instrument package.
They are fully instrument qualified when they leave Army Flight School. They just recieve more training on it when they are finished and in there units.

When they graduate flight school they are made level RL3 which means they can only fly with a Unit Instructer Pilot. After flying with them for a bit they become RL2 and then finally RL1 which means they can fly on there own. It does not take long to become RL1 because they are allready fully trained and qualified.

Then every year they have to take check rides and every couple of months they get no notices with instructers to make sure they are not unsafe.
THanks for the feedback. There are rumors floating around these parts that army pilots barely receive any instrument training - and that didn't seem right. I just figured that it was naval aviators thumping their own chests.
Navy pilots do recieve better training and there is a reason for that. Navy pilots fly more IFR because they dont have references flying over the water. Army helo pilots do most of there flying low to the ground and recieve most of there training for NOE.

For instance when I was deployed we never flew above 50 feet over the ground (normally it was lower than 50ft) unless it was to climb over wires or houses or what not. We had maps that showed towns and villages and what not, we also relied a lot on the GPS because of the vast areas with no references.

When not deployed for instance back in Germany we flew a lot of IFR because of the restrictions in German airspace, plus it is good training for the pilots.
To answer your question. Two weeks "BI" Basic instruments in a 2B24 UH-1 instrument simulator and then 8 weeks "AI" Advanced instruments in a Bell TH-67, same aircraft you would have flown for ten weeks in primary. Enough instrument training to qualify for an FAA Commercial Rotorcraft Instrument rating if you decide to pursue through the FAA Military Competency program.

CW-3 J.D. Brown
Master Army Aviator
Aviation Safety Officer
B Co. 1/140 Aviation (Assault)
To answer your question. Two weeks "BI" Basic instruments in a 2B24 UH-1 instrument simulator and then 8 weeks "AI" Advanced instruments in a Bell TH-67, same aircraft you would have flown for ten weeks in primary. Enough instrument training to qualify for an FAA Commercial Rotorcraft Instrument rating if you decide to pursue through the FAA Military Competency program.

Thanks ap... I tried to find the syllabus online but to no avail. What aircraft do you fly in army flight school? We start off w/ T-34C (soon to be T-6), then if you go helos you fly the TH-57 navy equivalent of your 67 I believe.

I went the Osprey route so I'm doing multi-engine in corpus then I go back to whiting field to do the rotary syllabus. We would bump into guys from fort rutger, but I never remembered to ask one of them specifics about their training.
Primary which I believe is still 10 weeks and AI which I believe is still 8 weeks is flown in the TH-67, basically a Bell 206 Jet Ranger same as your TH-57.
With the Flight School XXI program you then transition to the A/C you will be flying at your unit UH-60, AH-64, OH-58, or CH-47 and complete Basic Combat Skills, NVG, Gunnery for 64 and 58 guys, and then advanced combat skills. I was told recently that the names for the phases have changed but the phase is still basically the same. I attended flight school 17 years ago so quite a few things have changed since then.
Ok - they keep changing the names of our schools too. Primary for us is 26 weeks in the T-34C, advanced in helos is another 26 weeks in the TH-57B and C models I believe, then the fleet replacement squadron where you fly what you will in the fleet is another 20-26 weeks. Then, finally, you join your squadron.
I wish I could find my dads Flight School book that he was given at Fort Rucker when he went through flight school back in the early 80's that showed the school cylibus from WOC School and all the phases, but I am sure it has changed since then especially with Flight School 21. Back when he went through they were still flying the old TH-55 in flight school and then on to the Hueys.
Things sure do change and, from what I've read here, for the better, too. I went through Army flight school in the late '60s. From beginning to end, it was approximately 9 months. After graduation, you went to your unit in country or, if selected, to one of the transition training schools for CH-47 or AH-1G.

Army aviation was conducted at Ft. Wolters for pre-flight (fixed and Rotary wing), and then to primary/basic at Ft. Wolters for R/W or Hunter for F/W. At Wolters you flew one of three basic trainers: TH-13; TH-23; or, TH-55. I flew the Matel Messerschmidt.

Most R/W pilots then went for advanced and tactical training at Ft. Rucker and some (unlucky ones, I was told) to Hunter AAF. At Rucker, we transitioned into TH-13S for instrument training. We received a "tactical" instrument ticket from this - not really comparable to the instrument training they now get by any stretch of the imagination despite the fact we were going into an area well known for lots of instrument weather.

Believe it or not, our instrument ground school consisted of 10 or so hours in the infamous and obsolete, even then, Link Trainer we inherited from the Air Force, I believe. They even had wings on them despite being used to train helicopter pilots. They had a collective pitch in them as well which, from what I could tell, did absolutely nothing. They were used primarily to teach instrument radio procedure, flight plan following, and instrument scanning. Other than that, I didn't think they were much good.

After instrument training, we finally began our transition into the Huey. We began with ground school, of course, but quickly got into the cockpit. I still remember vividly sitting in the cockpit of the Huey for the first time. It was awesome compared to the very basic TH-55. They gave us the manual and only a day to memorize the start-up procedure. I remember sitting around the barracks with the other candidates studying that thing in anticipation of my first flight.

We trained on A, B, and D model Hueys. The A models were reserved for only instructor accompanied flights because their engines were famous for hot starts.

Eventually, we went to Tactical where we lived at a simulated airfield like in 'Nam. I went to guns, most went to slick Tactical. I had a blast. It was the best part of my training. At the end of Tactical, we all came together for the fly-by on the way to graduation. Every couple of weeks I would look up and watch one of those fly-by's. It was awesome to finally be in one.

I have flown the OH-58, but liked the OH-6. I imagine it is a great trainer. However, at the risk of sounding foolish, I thought learning to fly in an TH-55 created great seat-of-the-pants pilots because it was such a wobbly little aircraft compared to the very stable, forgiving Huey. It had absolutely no conveniences like an automatic throttle and no instruments to speak of besides the very basic and came only with an AM radio. Still, once you mastered it, it was a fun aircraft to fly.
Thank you. For a while I was 19 again when I was writing it. The "old guy" in my class was 28. Most of us were 18 - 22 or so. It was a great time to be an Army Aviator or so we all thought, anyway.
I went partly thru WOFT starting in Jan. 70. Got kicked out for a flight violation in Aug.
At that time we still had the link training at Wolters, but when you got to Rucker you also had instrument training in a TH-13, Since I never made it to that phase, I don't know how instrumented that Bell 47 was, but I do know they used the hood on your head, so I assume it was fully equipped.

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