Wanna' Be a Crew Chief?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by GregP, Sep 2, 2016.

  1. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Aren't you glad you aren't a crew chief?



    That's Corey O'Bryan and he usually gets bruises on his lower legs from the flying wires when he starts the P-26. He's glad it doesn't fly TOO frequently.
     
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  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I loved being a crew chief...
     
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  3. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    :salute:
     
  4. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    Army crew chiefs usually fly in the aircraft they worked on, it keeps them honest.
    I was always conscious of the fact that whatever I was working on, I'd be in that aircraft the next day. Or one of my good friends would be, if I was helping another crew.

    Now in civilian life i'm still a crew chief, for a race team, for 27 years now. I guess i'm stuck with it for life.
    Tyrod Racing, and i'm known as Tyrodtom. 3 cars presently, was once as many as 6 cars.
     
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  5. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Exactly.

    My name was on the side of the aircraft. If anything it was my aircraft. The pilots could be different every time, but when it flew, I was on board...

    Helping clear the aircraft of obstacles.
    Helping with navigation and radio calls.
    Responsible for the passengers.
    Door Gunner.
    Sling Load Monitor.

    Maintainer and Flight Crew. Best non-pilot job in the military.
     
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  6. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    This was no knock on crew chiefs. This was me feeling a bit sorry for Corey since I saw the bruises on his calfs from hitting the flying wires. He did NOT complain about it, but still ...
     
  7. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Was not taken as a knock...
     
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  8. Token

    Token Active Member

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    That P-26 is one of my favorite aircraft to see fly at Planes of Fame. Always has been. Whenever I know it will be flying I make the trip. The other big draws for me are the P-38 and the G-32A / F3F (when it comes to visit).

    T!
     
  9. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting - I just ASSumed helicopter pilots were generally assigned to a bird, like fixed wing pilots.
     
  10. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Awesome! If you don't mind sharing, which birds? I'm assuming Army.
     
  11. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    #11 DerAdlerIstGelandet, Sep 3, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2016
    Nope. Even Crew Chiefs could change. If I was not on the flight schedule for crew rest, but my aircraft was flying, another Crew Chief would crew it.

    Aircraft however were only assigned to Crew Chiefs. Our names were on them. That changed though in Iraq. We were ordered to remove the names for various reasons.
     
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  12. BiffF15

    BiffF15 Well-Known Member

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    To the Wrench Slingers I salute you! Every plane I was loaned brought me back and for that I will be forever grateful!

    Cheers,
    The Guy Who Bent Them
     
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  13. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    Yes Army , a OH-6. A pretty simple machine as helicopters go.
    Most of the pilots were Warrant officers, several years younger than me. I was 24, several of the WOs were 20-21.
     
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  14. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    How do the Hughes OH-6 and the Bell 206 compare?
    I've always wondered why the Army chose derivatives of both.

    Pilots:
    Did those 20-21 year old Warrant Officers have college educations?
     
  15. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    The Army required the OH-58A, to have the same engine as the OH-6. but the Bell was a great deal heavier. Like about 1200 lbs empty verses 1600 lbs.. So the OH-6 was faster, could lift more, had a greater rate of climb.. There was OH-58s in use while I was there, but all I saw them used for was non combat duties. Later upengined models had to have improved greatly. The light helicopter contracts went to the lowest bidder, Bell's bid was lower than Hughes for the later contracts.

    The Army required a high school graduate for WOC training, no college required in my era.
    I went half way thru the WOC program, washed out because of a flight violation. In my group that started with about 120 students , maybe 6 were straight out of high school, most had some college, and over a dozen of us were retreads, former enlisted men who wanted to fly. Former enlisted men from all services , Army, Navy, Marines, and like me, former USAF.

    We were down to about 80 students when I exited, almost completed primary flight training, 90 flight hours. By that time we had 3 students and one instructor killed during training .

    The kids right out of high school did just as well as anyone else.
     
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  16. soulezoo

    soulezoo Active Member

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    Even after moving up the ladder over the years as flight line expediter or pro super (even as first shirt), I still took frequent missions as a flying crew chief. That was really what being in the AF was all about for me.

    Besides, being red x certified has its benefits on the road!

    And there is little to replace the pride that exists when it is your name on the side of the plane and in the Aircraft forms.
     
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