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Old 06-13-2014, 10:01 AM   #1
SethRT
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Default Any ABH's out there?

So I just got back from MEPS last night and got the rating of ABH! I really wanted to work in the aircraft community because I thought I would have the chances to possibly take extra schooling and get certified to be an aircraft mechanic.

Ironically enough the rating I took was the one I researched the least so I didn't know a whole lot of what I was getting in to. I've been reading around trying to learn as much as possible so I can better prepare myself for the job but now I'm seeing they have almost 0% involvement with aircraft maintenance, and from what I've been seeing it seems like once you get there your stuck there (also might not be a bad thing, the job looks very interesting and fast paced but I was hoping for a little more on the maintenance side).

Now I know I shouldn't get ahead of myself and make plans for what I will do after the Navy but I was just wondering if any of you ABH,ABF,ABE guys out there could let me know if there are chances to get extra training and schooling or if it would be possible to reenlist into another rating in the aviation community later on (given the manning levels are low enough).

I appreciate any tips or help anyone on here can give me! Thanks for your time!
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Old 06-13-2014, 05:38 PM   #2
Jyoungs42433
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All I can say is good luck with getting help or info lol. Im in the same boat, I got sucked into ABH after being told it was one thing after asking for another...From what I gather When your out to sea your pretty busy but when in port youll have alot more free time to do whatever. You will be chocking chains and doing grunt work and not much else. Advancement is pretty good from what im told but getting out of it is seemingly impossible... my recruiter is an ABHC I believe thats how it is, hes a Chief Petty Officer ...and has given me lots of info on it. You will not be doing Maintenance on the aircraft at all. In fact until you get yellow or red shirt ( or w.e other colors their are) expect to..Paint...Carr a chain down things..and clean alot..then you can go red shirt which is Crash and Salvage Firefighting..or Yellow shirt which is more dealing with putting the aircraft where they need to go and making sure things run smoothly on the flight deck in general
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Old 06-13-2014, 06:55 PM   #3
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Thanks for the info! My recruiter is sending out a DAR for me to see if I can get something more related to maintenance. I still have a whole 7 months till my ship date so we will see!
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Old 06-13-2014, 07:35 PM   #4
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I had mine put in a day after mes in Feb and my ship date is Sept 8th and still nothing, KEEP on HIM/Her every month they need to re submit one I believe...I unfortunately got a recruiter that I believe is not doing mine but stay on top of them, hopefully it goes through. If it does not just go with it from there, just remember your not apart of the NAVY until you step on the bus to RTC
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Old 06-15-2014, 02:49 PM   #5
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Welcome to the aviation community.
Sadly, I have yet to go to the boat in my 3 year career, so I have yet to see ABs in action. Only ABEs I've seen were doing shore duty billets (not their typical in rate jobs) such as mail room and first lieutenant (in charge of school house cleaning) petty officers.
From my understanding ABHs are mostly in charge of moving aircrafts around the flight deck, so you will not touch any maintenance.
If you want to be an aircraft mechanic, then it sounds like you want to be an AM or an AD.
AMs are airframers, they take care of the hydraulic systems and body work.
ADs are the mechs, they take care of the engines and related systems.
Or you could be an AE and have your hand in a bit of everything. After all, wires touch about everything.

AMEs mostly take care of the air systems for pilot breathing and comfort. They are also responsible for ejection seats.
PRs take care of survival equipment, such as parachutes, flight suits, and helmets.
ATs make sure all of the various electronics are in working order: displays, communication, radar, etc.
AOs mostly load and unload ordnance.

ASs make sure the support equipment for the other rates are in working condition. They take care of the mobile power carts (generators), tow tractors, nitrogen carts, flood lights, etc.
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Old 06-16-2014, 07:52 AM   #6
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Hey! I am not and ABH but my boyfriend was and he's told me a lot about it and showed me videos. He was stationed on an aircraft carrier and went on deployment. You do not do any aircraft maintenance. You basically do whatever they tell you haha He had to paint, clean, and he had days where he was on the flight deck for hours and hours using binoculars to see the aircraft coming from a distance. He made sure the wheels and everything looked ok for it to land and told the guy next to him the aircrafts position for landing. He was a guy to make sure it landed safely and if he saw something wrong it wouldn't land. I believe ABHs are white shirts. The advancement is pretty good. But to be honest, as much as he thought his job was cool working with aircraft and all, he didn't like it due to all the other grunt work he had to do. At ports he was able to go and have fun lol That's all I can remember for now. I've been looking into AB rates myself, but if I think of anything else, I'll let ya know!
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Old 06-18-2014, 02:38 PM   #7
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Thanks allot guys! I got plenty of rates to put on my DAR and hopefully I'll remain in the aviation community.
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