Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

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WhiirlyBird
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Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby WhiirlyBird » Tue Jun 4 2019, 11:28

Hey I’m a long time stalker of bladeslapper and have been infatuated with rotary aviation since I was young. I’ve found myself in a position with a great (fixed wing) Ag company as a mixer loader and they have kept me working during winter when most people would be let off due to lack of work. Although I do enjoy fixed wing I still find myself staring at our companies little R22 even when the 502’s and 802’s turbine start spooling up and buzzing overhead.

Basically I have my CPL (A) and do bits and pieces of charter/ joy flying with friends but after a lot of talking and planning with my partner I’ve been given the green light on acquiring a loan to complete my chopper licences and my boss has told me that on completion I could pilot our R22 on shootings and mustering jobs, it wouldn’t be much but it would be something and after a few years i would end up with a few hundred hours of what I would deem as challenging and rewarding work. At this stage I would most likely complete my instructor rating with an VET FEE approved school (save being buried in more loans) and travel down the path of near death experiences with student pilots :shock:

I wanted the veterans of bladeslapper’s opinion and if they had any advice or anything they would do different. It would be tough having the loan but I can afford it and I will be living in the same area and hopefully working for this company for the next few years regardless so committing to it earlier rather than later seems wise to me.

Thankyou
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skypig
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby skypig » Tue Jun 4 2019, 22:32

I love flying Helicopters. I really gel with them. (Like Motorbikes)
Cars and Airplanes are just “transport”.
I have ATPL-H, CIR (A and H), Instructor rating H, Thousands of ME RW hours, Endorsements on the latest, greatest machines (Which I really like flying.)

If I was maybe 5 years younger, I’d walk away from RW, and try for the Airlines.

I think, even with the obvious approaching turn around in the OS RW industry, the overall, long term view is bleak.
If you want to earn enough to buy a house, you’ll need to fly ME IFR machines. This Means Off-Shore or EMS (Both have some “challenges” with working conditions).

Airlines look like they are on an upswing for the foreseeable future. This demand will raise wages though out the FW industry.

If you were to go down the Airline route, with a focus on earning money (EG a few years in China), you could buy a house, and an R44.
If you were to pursue a sane/stable home life you could choose a more home based roster. (Inter city Airlines)

Helicopters are much more fun, but it all becomes a job after a while. There are a lot of aspects that make a job “good”.
Longrass
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby Longrass » Wed Jun 5 2019, 11:21

Yep. A mate of mine went to fly for Cathay 4 years ago after 2 years at Tiger, he owns his house in cairns outright and is very close to pulling the trigger on buying an R22. He is pulling $220k pa as a 28 year old driver.
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Yakking
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby Yakking » Wed Jun 5 2019, 12:03

If you have the itch.... scratch it.

No one gets into Aviation for the dollars. We get into it because of the appeal to flying.

If flying helicopters intrigues you, you have the financial means to do it, your wife supports you and you have a job lined up once you've finished the training.... to tell you the truth, it doesn't get any better or easier than that.

Good luck my man. Enjoy 'Heli-crack'.
I wish I had a catchy saying like everyone else...
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havick
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby havick » Wed Jun 5 2019, 17:05

If you get some depth of experience on both side it will open up a significant amount more opportunities than just going one way or the other (especially overseas).
"You'll have to speak up, I'm wearing a towel."
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Cleared Hot
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby Cleared Hot » Thu Jun 6 2019, 00:50

Stick to fixed wing mate better future. Helicopter might be fun but industry is a dogs breakfast
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bladepitch
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby bladepitch » Thu Jun 6 2019, 10:19

Well it comes down to the individuals perspective...

If you are a junior pilot trying to crack the twin market it might seem tough.. but I have a mate who has had a golden run of late... from single engine tourism under 12 months ago to going onto his 2nd twin ticket right now.. a golden run in anyone’s books.. and logging single pilot twin command...in coming months going on to do his CIR...

All he did was apply to a well known company with a good reference and he was in..

On the other hand (As havick noted)another mate just left off shore a few months ago, did his Fixed wing ATPL tests and a flight test with a few hundred hours under his belt, but substantial time heli multi crew and command heli and got accepted into virgin straight onto jets and could not be happier!

I’ll admit it’s hard to crack the major off shore players at moment but it’s slowly recovering... if you are young and not yet ingrained into heli and have the option of fixed wing then yes it’s very attractive..

Tough call to make but do whatever you want..
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bladepitch
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby bladepitch » Thu Jun 6 2019, 20:40

Double up post for some reason...
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RePLCPLH
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Re: Turning to the darkside (fixed wing to rotary)

Postby RePLCPLH » Fri Jun 7 2019, 06:26

If VET fee is the way you’re going, my advice is to research the flight school very well. I’d recommend speaking to Mick at Aeropower in Redcliffe.

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