I was just wondering the pros and cons of the Loadmaster job (C-17,C-130) vs. a boom-operator on the KC-135. Just trying to get an idea on each. Thanks for your input.
Easy one. Boom operators do both jobs. There, you can become a boom operator and see for yourself!
Seriously, though- if you become a load on a C-17 you can guarantee to breath sand, as that's where the C-17's go. If you become a boom operator, you may go to the desert once in a while, but you'll more often see much better destinations. That also depends on what unit you are with. In 2004, as a KC-135 crew chief, I went to Guam for 2 weeks, southern France for 2 weeks, and Germany for 2 weeks. My counterpart crew chief on C-130's across the airport got to go to Iraq.
pretty sure most -135s are on a 40 on 40 off type of tour
You sound just like an AD peep
It's all about the job you do and what component you're in. I think AD aircrew has a different lifestyle than a Guard/Reserve aircrew. The same goes for ground pounders. I'm doing 60 here in K-stan and my AD counterparts are doing 120-180+. I've talked to some of the -135 aircrew and you're right, a lot of them do 40dayers.
As a boomer on a KC-135 you have the best of both worlds. You are the loadmaster but also the boom operator on most flights. I loved the refueling stuff the most but the figuring out the C/G for each flight was extremely important also.I was just wondering the pros and cons of the Loadmaster job (C-17,C-130) vs. a boom-operator on the KC-135. Just trying to get an idea on each. Thanks for your input.
Well this isn't necessarily always a bad thing. The Airdrop world is totally different though. But a loadmasters job never stops after take off either way. Everything from troops to bullets to Christmas presents I've dropped in combat. I don't think one is necessarily better than the other. We each have a mission and a role to play. I have been a load for 13 years and wouldn't have it any other way. But many booms feel the same way. 350 knots at 300 feet above the ground is pretty intense. Especially when the Loadmaster is making radio calls to the drop zone, and reading low level charts for the pilots who are trying to safely fly in a formation of multiple C-17s doing 60 degree check-turns at 2.5 Gs. All this followed by the Loadmaster dropping 110,000lbs of cargo by being extracted by parachutes out the back.Boom operators occasionally have to be awake during cruise to do their job. Loadmasters... gear up, flaps up, feet up lights out.