FAIP

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by bsa07eagle, Apr 23, 2014.

  1. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    Looking from some wisdom from some current UPT students (maybe hornet or bullet know). I know FAIPing typically isn't seen as a "good" drop, but can you provide more info? Also, does anyone know if Vance takes care of their FAIP's (do they get a good drop because they FAIPed)? I'm seriously looking into it because I will be newly married and would rather get a few extra years out of my first assignment and maybe more hours since other air frames are cutting back. Any advice/insight would be very appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Brian
     
  2. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Well, I see from the viewpoint of my husband who was a Vance FAIP from 2007-2011 and some of my friends who are current FAIPs. And the reactions of families at drop night who FAIP.

    At Vance he loved teaching students. He built up 1,500 hours and teaching was a source of pride. The rest of his quality of life was miserable. He hated Enid and the base. That's pretty common for anyone I talk with about FAIPing. They enjoy teaching and hoping a student doesn't kill them but loath the living conditions. Pretty common here to see wives cry when they're husband drops FAIP because they are stuck in Del Rio another 4 years.

    The Vance drops back in 2011 were pretty good. My husband and several of his friends dropped A-10s (maybe not so great in hindsight...). Some years it will be good, other years it is bad. It really is hard to tell and changes all the time. He had good experiences with his leadership at Vance but later commanders after he left had bad reps. Here at Laughlin, one T-6 squadron has a good rep, the other is considered toxic.

    Based on what I see and hear - people love the teaching but that's about it. The locations, quality of life, and family considerations make people dislike FAIPing. If I was a young 2LT, I wouldn't want to FAIP.
     
  3. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    From a mother-living-far-away standpoint, I'm glad my son(s) did not FAIP, especially at Laughlin. Hard to get to (Dallas>San Antonio>3 hour drive), and not exactly a stellar city for young folks.

    But, there are worse places, and I would say that there aren't THAT many Baltimore Ravens fans there so it's ok. :shake:
     
  4. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    Being a FAIP is a lot different now than back in my day, mostly due to the fact that the UPT students track now (i.e. go either T-38s or T-1s after the T-6 phase) rather than go through everything the same until drop night like they did in my day. Back then, being selected for FAIP meant you were juuuuuust off the cusp of getting a fighter, so do this as your first assignment and and you'll get one right afterwards. Now? It's a little different.

    Regardless, it is seen as a "bad deal" by most for the reasons hornet mentioned. Also, most of the young bucks I knew joined the AF to DO THE MISSION, and frankly teaching spin recoveries ad museum isn't the real mission. But remember this: EVERYONE will serve at least ONE bad deal during their career, especially flyers. It's expected. It's also expected that after you do am"Bad deal, the AF rewards you with a "Good Deal". So, some are OK getting FAIP'd on Drop Night because they'll get their bad deal out of the way early and will getna good deal afterwards.

    But you also wanted my advice, so here it is: I REALLY don't like your reason you are considering doing FAIP (want a family life right away and want the 4-year tour to start this). I have to mask: then what? Whatnhappensmin 4 years when you tell your young wife that you're NOW getting an F-16, which NOW means moving 3 times in 2 years, then 3 years of continuous deployments after that, but now with the possibility of little one in tow.

    Planning you career more than 5 years ahead is risky calculus at best. Plan and try form what YOU want now, or you'll living a life of regrets as those plans you made get changed because the AF has a vote on it as well.
     
  5. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Personally, I would not want to be a T-6 FAIP. They work 12+ hour days pretty much every day, and have to deal with a fair amount of paperwork...and that's after the new students try things that result in new maneuver names like "Immelspin!" :eek:
    Now, if you really like teaching, flying a lot of short sorties, and small-town America, you might like it.
     
  6. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Wife speaking.

    JMPO, but I would not want to go FAIP, 3 years later when you have to go through FTU for 5 months as a TDY enroute, than PCS to Korea is not fun when she is pregnant.
    ~~~ Also traveling Asia will be greatly reduced with baby in tow compared to an O1 right out of the gate.

    For posters BSA is not even at UPT yet if his tagline is right.

    BSA, what I mean by that is you are not at tracking yet, and FAIPs don't necessarily drop every time. You are putting the cart before the horse assuming that this is going to be an option on the table, 18-24 months from now. Yes, 18-24 months. Fencers DS is winging this Friday with my DS. They commissioned May 2012. Her other twin will wing next month. Stealth's DS (11) just graduated from F 16 FTU last month.

    Hornet's DH was a T38 FAIP, do you want to be a T-1 FAIP? They exist too out of Vance.

    Just looked at the base ops track thread. The last drop posted had no FAIPS for T38 or 1. Columbus did not either. Laughlin did. Why Hornet stated wives were crying.

    OBTW, my best marital advice to your wife. She is the mistress, the AF is your wife. Harsh, maybe, but that is the reality. They say deploy, and she is 8 months pregnant you deploy. They say move and you move, at least for the NINE years you owe. This is the life she is entering, Bullet was not home for Halloween between the time our youngest was 5 months old until he was 7. Our 7th wedding anniversary was celebrated in a Denny's as we traveled cross country. He was not there when our eldest received his 1st Communion. I had to put up not ione , but two homes for sale because the AF deployed him and handed him orders too. I have sat at the family Thanksgiving/Easter table with his family, and without him. Don't even get me started on taking the jets to safety, while leaving me back at home with 3 kids, 2 dogs and a cat when the hurricanes hit. That is the life she is entering.
    ~~~ Now the fun part is during the hurricane, all of the wives hung out at my home with their kids. It was fun.
    ~~ The Communion, all of the husbands not deployed stepped in, they smoked the salmon, hung the pinata, did all of the heavy lifting.
    ~~~ The home selling, well, the fact is Bullet, just said yes dear when I decided which house we were buying at the next base after making me live through listing by myself...That was the best perk.

    Hence Bullets hesitation regarding why because honestly don't delay your career because your newly married

    Don't get me wrong I loved every second of the life, and at his retirement he made a comment about me no longing being the mistress. Just saying, I have seen guys careers go down the tank because they didn't think the long run.
    ~~~ There will be a guy that took the Korea tour, and 3 years later will be at WIC, while you will be going through XTU and not yet operational. There will be another guy that will be an IP before you, and probably a flight commander because you are new to the airframe AND squadron.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2014
  7. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Mild correction, DH was a T-6 FAIP (and loved it more than flying T-38s). What's funny is he did UPT in T-34s at Whiting, T-38s at Vance and then became a T-6 FAIP at Vance.
     
  8. HNeedle

    HNeedle Member

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    If you're hoping to T-38 FAIP, odds are against you. There's 1-2 per fiscal year at Vance. T-6 FAIPs are much more common..

    You asked if the FAIPs are generally taken care of. While it ebbs and flows, the answer lately has been yes. As a FAIP, as long as you put In effort and are decent, you'll usually end up with a fighter of some sort. We've got 4ish T-6 FAIPs now spinning back up in the -38 before heading off to IFF, and then either the F-16 or F-15E.

    Sorry I can't speak for the T-1 track, but yes you'll have a very predictable life for a few years. What happens after that is anyone's guess, but lately if you went through T-38s in UPT you'll get a good deal. If you want to settle down and start a family, go for it. Enid isn't the best place in the world, but it definitely isn't the worst. You'll get plenty of hours (300-400ish a year) and have a very rewarding experience.
     
  9. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    Thanks for all the insight, I'm not trying to make a decision, just wondering if the FAIP stereotype is true. Seemed like no one wanted it and I just wanted to know why.

    Thank you,

    Brian
     
  10. eagle36

    eagle36 USAFA Alumnus

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    My personal opinion is it depends on the time period and the drops. For example, when most of my classmates went through UPT (USAFA 2010), FAIP was a great drop. ENJJPT was only dropping a couple fighters per class of 15-20 students, so getting FAIPed meant they still had a chance at getting a fighter. As of late, it's been more dreaded because with so many fighters available and the FAIP having to come from the top half of the class (at ENJJPT at least), it meant you could be FAIPed while someone behind you in the rankings got a fighter. So it really comes down to the times and to what you want.

    The other reason people don't want it is that they want to get to a "grey jet" or into the "real AF". They don't want to stay in AETC and instead want to get out and do a "real mission". Not saying that training future pilots isn't a real assignment, but that's the way a lot of people view it.

    Personally, getting a fighter was the most important thing to me, so I placed FAIP after all the fighters but before any cargo/bomber/spec ops. As I've been told and am sure I will learn, any AF assignment is what you make of it. Best of luck.
     
  11. stvblm

    stvblm Member

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    Wash out rate after UPT for fighters is still about 10-15%. Nothing is a guarantee till you complete each level. If you do wash out you will most likely go to AWACS

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    LMAO.

    Our DS didn't care what airframe he got as long as it wasn't AWAC....luckily for him he got his wish.

    That being said, I don't know who was more upset on drop night. The one that got T-1 FAIP at Laughlin or the AWAC.
     
  13. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Why are AWACs so undesirable?
     
  14. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    I know my son at vance asked us to pray that he did NOT FAIP. He got the C5m Galaxy so... all is well in the Steeler Nation.

    That said, I agree with PIMA. At the Laughlin drop, she was right on with her evaluation.
     
  15. USAFretired1996

    USAFretired1996 Member

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    High Ops Tempo - constant deployment.
     
  16. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Thank you! Wouldn't "High Ops Tempo" = greater numbers of flying hours than most/all other airframes?
     
  17. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    One of son's roomies at UPT got AWACS (after being washed back), so I asked him why it's undesirable. He said:

    1. High deployment rate. Roughly 90-120 days gone, 90 days home, repeat.

    2. Mission is to fly big circles in the sky for 10-12 hours.

    3. Antique cockpit.

    4. Only CONUS base is in Oklahoma.

    5. ABM runs the mission, not the pilot.

    He did add that there are many pilots who enjoy the mission. It is just not glorious. Son agreed that it is a very important mission for command and control in the sky.

    Stealth_81
     
  18. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Thank you Stealth_81! If an AWAC pilot eventually chose to work for a civilian airline wouldn't s/he probably bring quite a few more hours than most other AF pilots? Just curious if that would be desirable from an airline perspective.
     
  19. USAFretired1996

    USAFretired1996 Member

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    Stealth’s son is right. While it is a critical mission, it’s not a very sexy mission. Your job is to get the guys in the back where they need to be so they can do their job. Similar to a KC-135 driver – get the enlisted boom operator to a refueling point so he can do his job.
     
  20. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    I am not sure how many hours they get, but just from the numbers above, assuming they are flying once every 2 or 3 days while deployed it would put the AWACS at about 600-700 hours per year. That is a lot compared to a fighter. Son flies about 2 or 3 times a week, averaging 1.25 hours per sortie. That comes out to somewhere around 175-200 hours per year. So after the 10 year commitment the AWACS would have 7000 hours vs. 2000 hours for the fighter.

    Keep in mind, this is very simplistic math for comparison. Many other things can affect their hours such as tours out of the cockpit. I just wanted to show that, yes, they will have more hours than fighter pilots. I don't know how tanker or transport hours would compare.

    Stealth_81
     

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