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Considering moving from flying to maintenance

Considering moving from flying to maintenance   

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Author: I'm retired now   Date: 7/10/2019 10:25:40 PM  +11/-0   Show Orig. Msg (this window) Or  In New Window

but after 35 years maintaining helicopters doing almost everything you can do with them, I can say that I know of nobody who hung up their hat because of liability, a violation, or being part of an accident investigation. Yes, there is more than enough that can happen to make a sane person have second thoughts.

I have seen accidents and incidents that were maintenance related, been involved in one, that were expensive mistakes but nobody got hurt. Absolutely, be afraid of screwing up. That fear helps you do the right thing. When you actually look at maintenance related tragedy it more often than not could have been avoided by any number of the things that everyone and their brother or sister is always harping on in safety seminars. Pay attention, do not ever compromise what you know to be right, unless you really are sure of something do not take it for granted, and put the stupid smart phone away.

Do not think that a pilot certificate and a fresh A&P will get you everything you dreamed of on the maintenance side. That being said, I think the jobs could be more interesting if you are a pilot/ mechanic as long as you are not expected to work 8 hours a day in each role every day. I've seen many who were qualified to do both leave a job because they really wanted to fly but were being tasked with more and more maintenance.

Let's also face the "grass is greener effect". I've never heard anyone say " are you just the pilot or do you get to maintain it too?". That line is always reversed. Get the A&P because you like working on them enough to tolerate the equivalent of an inept chief pilot/boss while in the hangar doing maintenance. Yeah, a well qualified and trained auto mechanic probably makes more money. Most of my helicopter career was as far away from corporate/vip type aircraft as I could get, but you need to suit yourself. I was never in to putting plastic on the seats or making cheese and cracker plates for nit wits who were probably going to walk into a tail rotor unless you had 'em on a leash.

The last thing I'll offer up is that the training I got in A&P school ( I went to a small community college that had a great aviation department) was perhaps the best education I ever had. It really is a gateway if you take advantage of it in that I learned not only the aircraft stuff but basic electrical theory, hydraulics, painting, welding, machine work ( lathe and milling machines at least) and now being retired I have the confidence to dive into anything and go way over my head. It pretty much turned me into someone who other people think can do most anything. My wife really likes that too. Good luck.
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Considering moving from flying to maintenance +2/-0 Preacher from the black lagoon 7/10/2019 9:18:52 PM