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gunnysnow

42 Years Old, Second Career?

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I believe the academic community would call this a "confirmation bias". You already had your mind made up before you posted your original comment.

Fact is I'm sure the majority of us on the forum were told that we shouldn't do it when we first enquired. I know I was told to stay on the farm, but I jumped in with both feet anyhow. I was 1 of the 3 that found jobs from a class of 11 that year. That was 15 years ago and I feel for the low timers now when clients are asking for 2000 plus hours to do entry level work in a 206.

I know a number of 6000-8000 hour pilots with twin time and longline skills that are looking for work right now and who probably resent your "negativity" claim. Thats the truth.

Some other threads you may want to research here besides flight training and low time job prospects are topics discussing the large number of guys leaving the bush/utility/VFR for overseas/IFR, air ambulance or government. Also read about the low tariffs operators are charging to stay afloat in this market and ponder how much these companies have left in the purse to bring on a low timer. All this has an affect on low timers (of all ages) trying to break into the business.

I'm not saying don't do it, just please get all your facts and make an informed decision. Hangars are friendly places, stop by one that IS NOT A FLIGHT SCHOOL and talk to some of the guys. You'll probably get a free cup of Maxwell House out of it.

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Also it's kinda dangerous... Worth considering

 

What??!! So is driving to California for the winter (wish I could). More than pilots, we are risk managers - eat well, sleep well and keep sharp, watch your fuel, density altitude, gross weight and land into wind! Re-assess your personal limits as the season progresses and you get tireder. Assess and manage the risks - you can always say no (but may be seeking a new employer).

 

I think age may be less of a difficulty than your maturity and work experience. Accomplished, secure, assertive and decisive types are not always appreciated in the Hx bush world. If you're used to running your own show, the Hx world may hold some frustrations for you.

 

But it's a great life in many respects, sure glad I put in the years, saw the country and met great people. Beats working for a living!

 

Cheers . . . .

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Working on a longline in the curve day after day over top of heavy timber or jungle is "Dangerous" or maybe you prefer "Risky". After having kids, this is easier to realize.

 

If you dream of flying, then go for it, One of the most common regrets a nurse hears from dying patients is

" I didn't follow my dreams"

 

If your looking to make lots of money, and be at home by 5 pm everyday, or you want to look cool, then don't do it.

 

To me, just flying solo for the first time was almost worth 50 grand! and in 40 years, you will look back at it all and the 50 grand won't mean shite, and the fact you flew a helicopter will mean everything.

 

But please, don't waste money on turbine training. Learning to fly is about learning to fly the aircraft, no matter what the power plant is. They all fly the same.

 

Good luck, and in my opinion, give Moutain View Helicopters in Springbank a call. Even when you have 5000 hours, they will back you up if you put the effort in. NO REGRETS!!!

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Also it's kinda dangerous... Worth considering

To this I have the same response to anyone who makes that statement including my own mother.

 

"The only way my job is dangerous is if I'm not doing it properly"

 

That can include saying no and just not doing it. Also part of my job.

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Although I agree that a great deal of the work we do is only dangerous if we are not doing it right there are many circumstances that are beyond our control that do make it dangerous. This can be said about your day to day commute to work but it's still there.

 

A quick ote comes to mind;

 

Confidence is the feeling you have before you fully understand the situation.

 

-Unknown Author

 

I feel that confidence in the fact that the job is being done right is not going to keep you safe. There is a reason that the twin maket is growing and we need to recognize that anything can happen at any time. I know that you are not saying that you are not bullet proof so don't think I'm criticizing you.

 

Bust of luck to all in the up coming season.

 

R

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Dear gunny snow

Don't want to rain on your parade here but for your wife and kids sake don't be naive about your decision.

 

A couple of things I've learned in my forty odd years. #### runs downhill except when it wicks uphill. Round wheels generally roll better than square ones. If it sounds too good to be true it usually is. And the principles of supply and demand govern everything.

 

That is the carrot dangling practices of the helicopter industry and the overwhelming supply of starry eyed low time pilots out there coupled with the relatively low demand for helicopter use can make it a nasty place to be rife with all sorts of abuse. Not a good bet to base your families welfare on should you not succeed in living the dream. Living the dream yup, lots of guys with thousands more hrs than you repeat to themselves and each other knowingly regarding the downsides of the career.

 

You see I kind of place being a helicopter pilot for a guy is kinda like being a fashion model/actress for a chick . They all want to be one but a very very small percentage make it with all sorts of abuses being suffered by all those drop outs along the way. But noooo that can't happen to you. All those guys charging over the trench wall always get the girl and the Medal of Honor to boot.

 

You wouldn't be the first forty something low timer I've seen lament about the endless 16 hr days worked ground crew week after week and labour law infringements suffered , family missed and no money to show for. But no you can't dare say anything because you don't want to be blacklisted by management for having the wrong attitude. Ohhh but the carrot is juicy and the urge to fly is overpowering.......and shrewd businessmen and management know this.

 

Your question reeks of minimal research and ignorance of the industry just the fact that you are considering all turbine time surely has owners of training schools salivating over your money. (Without having their conscience bothered by the fact you have so much)Heck they've probably already descended upon you like Cheshire cats willing to answer your every question. Chumming the shark tank with blood and guts is the image that comes to mind when you posed such a question.

 

You are going to have to compete with kids 20 yrs younger than you with more energy and no adult obligations or familly to hold them back. If anyone learned you did all your training on turbine you'd surely be relegated to the bottom of the pecking order.

 

But hey don't take my word for it cuz I'm just a negative naysayer with the wrong attitude. Be smart about it man go on a employment tour of all the butt-/:3! locations and operators posing as a 100 hr wonder looking for work, be thankful you didn't spend that 100k before you went on tour. Don't talk to school operators talk just to working operators your more likely to get the straight goods about what it takes to get flying. Talk to line pilots not management because management needs your ground crew "skills" even better get your wife to talk to one of their wives......that is if you can even find one who is still married...

 

If twere me and i couldn't resist the rotor head bug and had a hundred k I would get my private license and buy a deathtrap like a mosquito or rotor way, shoot all the autos I pleased in the back yard, only fly

when the weather is nice and I'm well rested, and always end up at the dinner table with the fam and keep running a viable business. Sure the equipment is laughable in comparison to the commercial machines but unless your on government contracts even the latest most powerful machine will be loaded to the nuts and fly like ####.

 

Spend the cash wisely man your family depends on it. Life is beautiful just like your family and if none of this makes sense to you and the rotor has you mesmerized well then maybe just maybe you have the right stuff

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That makes me want to slit my wrists El Guapo...

 

My experience required a lot of sacrifice, but not quite that bad and I did it under similar circumstances as Gunny.

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