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I want to be a professional (non-airline) pilot when I grow up

phrogdriver

More humble than you would understand
pilot
Super Moderator
Interesting that they’re doing an “instrument proficiency check” in EC120s and AS350s, neither of which are IFR-capable.

Both of those aircraft are notoriously squirrelly, plus their blades both go the wrong direction.
 

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
And the whole, touching the ground, bursting into flames thing.

That said, plenty of people are doing simulated and the occasional actual IIMC evolutions in 206Ls and 407s and forgetting to declare an emergency because it's a (relative) non-event, so I guess technology is a good thing.
 

phrogdriver

More humble than you would understand
pilot
Super Moderator
And the whole, touching the ground, bursting into flames thing.

That said, plenty of people are doing simulated and the occasional actual IIMC evolutions in 206Ls and 407s and forgetting to declare an emergency because it's a (relative) non-event, so I guess technology is a good thing.
Tell me more about their Pinto-like tendencies. I used to fly 120s. Never heard that part.
 

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
The A-Star is pretty notorious for bursting into flames upon impact with the ground. It historically didn't have a crash-resistant fuel tank. There's lots of various bad stories, one of the most famous being this one (sorry, don't have a direct video link):


My favorite nickname for the airframe was "Death Star." There is an STC to upgrade the tanks, which industry seems to be doing slowly. I'll admit, I don't know if the -120 has the same issue, but since I thought it was of the same lineage, I thought I remember reading it had the same issue (and same STC).
 

ChuckMK23

Instructor, Flight.
pilot
Tell me more about their Pinto-like tendencies. I used to fly 120s. Never heard that part.
I flew the AS 350 quite a bit when it was competing for what became the Army TH-67. It was a smooth, solid aircraft all around and even auto'd nicely - despite the rotor turning in the wrong direction 🆒
 

Flash

SEVAL/ECMO
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
Non-pilot managers who treat their folks like shit. No respect for time-off/OT/etc. Ground job BS. Getting stuck on the SW Border with no chance of transfer. Forced into UAV operations without a ramp back to the cockpit. They can chest beat about "Mission before money" all they want, just like the Navy does, but people are leaving for the same reasons they left Active Duty.
We've got two CBP P-3 types in my reserve unit and their main complaint is how much P-3 hate there is at the higher levels, and the culture clash between the former Customs and BP air branches. According to them a lot of the leadership grew up in BP and are very Army-centric and dismiss the utility of the P-3 types ignoring the drug totals the P-3 guys interdict, fixating on helo ops and the border where much smaller loads are interdicted, and are very shortsighted in their planning for air ops and the aircraft fleet as a whole. They did say the forced UAV thing has gone away for them, for now.

They had some interesting insights to the poly as well, and CBP's policy there doesn't seem to match up with best practices.

EDIT- I have to amend the UAV claim after talking to the CBP folks for a while about CBP stuff (it was a boring exercise, lots of BS'ing), they apparently aren't making more P-3 guys go UAV's now but some who were dual-qualed still have to do their UAV penance regularly. They are apparently trying to build up a dedicated UAV cadre and the dual-qualed folks will have to do double duty until they are full up on the UAV side.

The two caveats to that for the new hires are that there are only 5 basing choices right now for the new pilots, 2 or 3 are UAV bases and the others are helo bases with no new-hire pilots going directly to P-3's (sensor operators can still go straight to P-3's). The other caveat is CBP air leadership wants to move away from UAV's, apparently the juice ain't worth the squeeze. Whether or not their bosses and bigger leadership goes along with it remains to be seen.
 
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