Burning Conflict of Uncertainty... Seaman Specialist or Weapons Engineer...

Discussion in 'Joining Up - Royal Navy Recruiting' started by Conflicted, Jun 4, 2016.

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  1. Navy-Net Users,

    I have a burning conflict of uncertainty (well burning to me anyway's) regarding the route to take following completion/pass of my recent RT.

    In the CA's word's "I smashed it" which he explained has opened the door to pretty much whatever Branch I would like to go for... with the exception of Medical, & Officer roles as my UCAS points fall short of the required 180, hence the use of term 'pretty much.'

    This was a surprise to me as although I like/enjoy tinkering with my road-bike/cycle and building/fixing things I had never took myself for someone who had a lot of mechanically comprehensive knowledge, at least not enough for an engineering profession/career, therefore did not initially go in to the RT with the aim/view of an engineering branch.

    Thus, my initial attraction to a role in the Navy was that with which the title of this post suggests, of Seaman Specialist. I'm happy to truthfully sight my reasons for this as being able to operate on the Bridge as helmsman and look out... to operate the fast-boats and smaller weapons during ship protection... & to learn the varying communication techniques such as Morse, Flag's etc. I'm also old enough, have enough common sense and I'm not naive enough of mind to think that this role would be guns and boats all the time, I'm aware that a fair portion of my time will be for general ship duties and maintenance like all branches have to do for their respective areas aboard ship, but having discussed with the AFCO, Googled and read many posts/replies on this forum, there doesn't seem to be anything good to be said about this role (or the warfare branch in general for that matter) and the varying replies already on offer throughout this forum do not really provide any greatly helpful/recent information about the shape/form of this role in current times to suggest why it's so bad, if indeed it is... although at times I've found the inter-branch competitive ribbing/knocking-down to be very entertaining, which I'm fairly certain a lot of these topics are used for in that it's another opportunity to get a 'dig' in to another branch... but the current replies/information on offer only ever seem to take that theme and I feel don't really address the point of what this branch is really like from the people actually serving within which doesn't provide the help/guidance someone like myself and previous posters with similar questions have been seeking... for example:

    1/ What is the role really like both at sea & shore-side? What tasks and responsibilities are to be undertaken when not/in between deployments/being at sea.

    2/ What specialisations are available within the role? If any...

    3/ Does this branch really get no time off at port or are you always on guard duty?

    The negativity for this role has led to my current dilemma, in that having been told by the CA that essentially the world is my oyster in the Navy following my RT, I've gone back to the drawing board to review the roles on offer... landing me with an alternative to my initial decision, ET(WE), as my thoughts are that maybe this would provider better opportunities in terms of having a trade, greater opportunities/quality of work both at sea and shore-side, more opportunities to specialise, and the opportunity to take time away from the ship to explore when in port.

    I know that a lot of what I'm asking will have been address previously, and that information can be obtained from the AFCO, Careers Advisor assigned to me, RN website, plus varying Google Searches (believed me I've tried to source the info myself from all channels noted) but what I'm after is an insight (within forum/info disclosure rules of course) from people currently serving in these roles in terms of what is both good and bad (I feel both sides are important for accuracy and honesty) about these roles so I can way up what would be better suited to myself...

    Thanks in advance, L.
  2. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    The simple truth is, everyone drips about the negative elements of their branch, particularly the menial aspects.

    Duties for Seaman Specialist are no more excessive than any other branch, time off is also no more, no less. It's just that there is a long held tradition in the Warfare Branch with letting everyone know how 'awful' it is and how hard done by they are.

    My advice is go for a job in which you are intellectually stretched. Generally this can be measured by those branches requiring top-end qualifications and recruit test scores. The general rule of thumb is the more technical the job, the longer the training and the more transferrable skills & qualifications to be earned.

    Good luck in your decision, there's loads and loads and loads and loads of threads on just this subject.
  3. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    The search button is at the top right of the page
  4. Transferable skills Weapon Engineer > Transferable skills Seaman Spec = no brainer!
  5. Think of life post RN
    How will your RN chosen trade help you into employment.
    Clue There aint many seaman specs in civie street
  6. Thank You Ninja_Stoker, both for taking the time to reply and for replying with good & sensible advice.

    The more I think about it, the more I'm beginning to sway towards the Engineering side... I'm thinking I'd be missing out on a good opportunity here should I turn my back on the more intellectual role like you say, in terms of qualifications/civvy recognised skills able to be gained etc...

    Thanks again! L.

    Janner... You know I wondered what that thing was 'right' up there. I mean I've used 'search' tools before but I guess I'm not as proficient or shall we say, multi-skilled/multi-lingual in the world of search areas as I'd thought...

    ... trust me, that search bar has been used and abused more times its been perceived by myself than a paint brush has been used by a Sea Spec from reading all the similar/previous posts on this forum when I've searched... (if that helps in anyway lessen you're suspected annoyance levels at me posting a similar thread...).

    As suggested in my 'novel' above, I only posted as I couldn't find anything providing the kind of advice I (individually) was seeking, and having exhausted other options such as AFCO, CA & Google decided to post something as a last resort... not to cause any offence to the Navy-Net forum of course, I'm just not one to normally post things to a forum/public domain.


    Notafourknotfudgepacker... Slim...

    Thank you also for taking the time to reply with good & sensible advice, I really appreciate it.

    All is helping me way up the options and put things into perspective in making my choice.

    Nice one! L.
  7. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    Well done for using the search button first, believe me when I say you are in a very small minority by not just taking the lazy way out and expecting others to do the work for you.
  8. Being in the RN will teach you a whole lot more than a specific trade. If you want a trade and you think that trade will suite your needs for the next 40 or 50 years then go for it and reap the rewards that it brings. When I was a school leaver I had no real idea what I wanted as a career though I had enough qualifications to go for anything. I chose, foolishly some will say, Seaman spec( as it's now known) and had a great time. Yes, I painted ship/Boat, I scrubbed the decks and did my bit standing guard when required. I never felt envious of any of my shipmates or felt I'd somehow cocked up my life for all time. You learn in the University of Life where they don't hand out certificates but become an adaptable person with management skills which can unlock many doors. I have retired now, not rich by any measure but comfortable and all I had to do was build on the foundation that the RN gave a naive country boy of moderate ability.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. I had free choice of all branches also, I ended up Warfare for a variety of reasons, was bored beyond belief and thankfully managed to branch transfer after a couple of years and a lot of fighting.

    Go engineer.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2016
    • Like Like x 2
  10. Trainer

    Trainer War Hero Book Reviewer

    What Monty said....
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Yup, that would certainly be my suggestion, too.
  12. Ninja_Stoker, Janner, NotAFourKnotFudgePacker, Slim, Fishhead, Monti & Trainer...

    Thank You All for your inputs and for taking the time to give me some guidance and advice! It is really appreciated!

    After much deliberation and further chats with my assigned CA, I've decided to go with ET(WE) and have my interview in the next couple of weeks. What can I say... the pull of the big guns and the "Guchi" equipment as my CA put it has sucked me in like a whirlpool and I just couldn't escape!

    Once again, thank you for your time... I know having trawled this forum day and night for the last couple of weeks there's some hard work questions posted on here at times so hopefully I haven't fallen in to that category for any of you... but if so, then I reservedely apologise and welcome any ribbing that's comes my way...!

    Cheers, L.
    • Like Like x 3
  13. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    Well done, I hope you are successful and enjoy your RN time
  14. Kinnell for the first time in yonks I find MontyP and me are in full agreement.
    must go and lie down in a dark place
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Well done @Conflicted . All the best for your upcoming RN career. I hope it meets your expectations and you enjoy your time as much as I enjoyed mine.
  16. Nice one @Conflicted .
    I hope you get to play with the big guns - if you're still around when the Type 26's arrive you may even be working on the 5" Mk45 :cool:
    I have to say I'm a bit envious.
  17. Right decision.

    See you in the fleet.
  18. The new F35's are going to have big guns too :) Go AET

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