Joining the Navy as AET compared to RAF aircraft technician

08hjhi

Newbie
Hi all,

After a lot of research and talking to various people, I am considering applying to the RN as an AET. Originally my ambition was to apply to the RAF as an aircraft tech (still deciding on avionics or mechanics) but due to the advertised 18month wait list to start training (I am 23 and looking for a career change so really want to get started asap), and being advised by a current RAf engineer that promotion in the RAF for aircraft techs is very slow compared to counter parts in the RN, my thoughts are now to apply to join the RN as an AET instead.

With this being said, I've got a few questions that answers to would really help me make a more informed decision, so It'd be really great to hear your thoughts on them from your personal experiences!

- First, could anyone shed any light on the promotion aspects I mentioned above, and whether promotion opportunities are more available to AET's in the RN as oppossed to RAF techs?
- In the RAF, it's advertised that aircraft techs work towards a level 3 apprenticeship, whereas RN AET's work towards a level 2 apprenticeship. From others experience, how much would this affect my career in the long term and what further qualifications are available for AET's to work towards and in what sort of time frame? Also is their any industry opinions on whether there is any noticeable difference in the depth/quality of training between RAF and RN techs, or whether one of the two are considered to be the better techs?
- The RAF distinguish between avionics techs and mechanical techs but there doesn't appear to be any separation between these on the RN recruitment site. Do RN AET's get trained in both avionics and mechanics? This would be a massive bonus if so.
- I have read on other posts on here that a lot of RN AET's don't actually spend much time at sea at all and spend a lot of time at RAF bases. Is this very common for AET's, and is there any other key differences between RAF techs and RN AET's that you would place importance on for someone deciding between the two?
- Finally, when I was researching into the RAF, I was really interested in the junior rank flying scholarships they have available. Is there anything like this in the RN?

Thanks very much!
 
Quick answer, the crabs have AV, Mech and Armourers (Why they are still clinging onto this pointless trade I don't know?)

The RN has AET's, you would be streamed after the first part of Trade Training into either AV or Mech. Av cover the Old Radio/Radar and Weapons Electrical. Mech covers Airframes and Engines.

You will be on an RAF base if you went to F35's, you may be on an Army base if you get sent to Apaches (a few are there). You will go to Sea and ace it first time, that's why us Wafu's don't need to keep doing it :)

Don't know anything about flying scholarships sorry.

Been out 12 years so this is now the depth of knowledge regarding all thing Wafu.
 

slim

War Hero
For starters you will get a better uniform as an AET, a veritable trapping suit, The ladies love a sailor.
Work hard and become an POAET and you will get a nice suit with shiny buttons and a peaked cap.
The RAF on tother hand has a Crabfat Blue uniform and they all look the same. Advantages of the RAF is that when you go on detachment you will stay in a rather nice hotel rather than sharing a cramped messdeck ona ship as an AET.
Also on a ship you is a big target for T enemy.
RAF of course will be working from an airfield but living in said hotel so far less dangerous situation.
The RAF send their officers to war while the maintainers take it easy sunbathing while waiting for said ocssicers to return.

Finally of course jon as an AET and you are becoming a member of Gods chosen branch :)

Up to you to decide both services give excellent training which is useful in the big wide world when you decide to eave :)
 

Zoidberg

War Hero
You may be on an Army base if you get sent to Apaches (a few are there).
PO grubbers and a Junior Lt otherwise you're SOL, last I heard.

The RAF do all of their trade training towards the beginning of their career, meaning that once you're in you don't have an awful lot to do in the way of returning for promotion courses.

On the flipside, their promotion is much, much slower and it's not unusual to see someone leave at 22 years having only reached corporal. They get to do more early on in rank, we get to do more at the more managerial level of PO/CPO.

In terms of qualifications, level 3 is where their service- provided quals end whereas the RN will give you a foundation degree at PO, a HNC for Leading Hand and I believe a Level 3/5 management and Leadership qual.
 

Zoidberg

War Hero
Cheers :) my mate is a PO Grubber down there.

There used to be PO Grubber drafts out in Detmold Germany working with the Amy Air Corps, probably an extension of that draft.
They could have changed it. The last time I knew anyone to go there was about 7 years ago.

Were the Germany drafts primarily workshops? I vaguely recall someone getting a draft there.
 

redmonkey

Lantern Swinger
Book Reviewer
They still send grubbers to Apache and the Army Wildcat Sqdn.
I was talking to someone who has just left the army sqdn earlier today.
 

Biker Buster

Lantern Swinger
I spent time, back in the 80's with the RAF and while i cant comment om the like for like skills. I did realise that the navy grew better skillsets and were more eager to pass people through for promotion.
Can't imagine much has changed.

Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
 
Having gone through the Joint Force Harrier Panto (spooky that), the RN were seen in a very bad light due to the perceived skill set. As mentioned above the RAF spend longer working on the skills during trade training where as the RN tend to train to the aircraft type (Pt 4 training).

At JFH the crabs saw these AEM/T's coming out of training having never seen a live aircraft (they have a line training school), where live aircraft are operated upto the point of imaginary take off, all servicing and maintenance is carried out. An AET will not even fuel an aircraft under technical training. This may have changed however I don't think it will be anything like the Cosford set up.

They saw Killick Tiffs straight out of training doing their C of C and becoming PO's very quickly. This ruffled a few feathers and caused no end of friction.

Once a Crab leave the aircraft Type familiarisation course they are set to go, and AET still has to do QM on the aircraft type.

Even through both the RN and the RAF are military aircraft operators, apart from the Aircrew both systems operate very differently.
 

redmonkey

Lantern Swinger
Book Reviewer
The crabs on the Merlin Sqdn prior to handover to the RN saw the AETs as only fit to work the line. They tried to ensure the good jobs went to their own SAC(T)s to allow them more experience.

Some of the tossers looked down on the RN all the time due to the different way we did things.

Different uniform , different way to do things
Even landing on a sign post and punching a hole through the belly and cockpit causing the P2 collective lever links to separate is not reason to make a correct part 1 entry. The smiling tosser flew the thing home

How things changed when we embarked for the first time.
 
I remember coming into work one morning (Wittering) and the crabs had snagged the GPS system during test, I went out to the aircraft and thought I'd check the Antenna as I knew work had been done in the area. Took the panel off and saw a perfect drill hole through the wiring loom, the riggers had replaced a fastener the night before, no paperwork, no job cards and definitely nothing in the handover log. Investigation took place and when they realised they couldn't blame a newly qualified Tiff it was brushed under the carpet. That's what JFH was like :(
 

Maxpowers

Lantern Swinger
Think there will allways be inter-service slagging off.
My old man was an RAF tech joined as a Flem being a flight line mechanic basically trained to fulfil
Multiple roles on the line he eventually got his fitters course and became a tech, the first thing he said when his son (me) haha told him he wanted to join the FAA an an AET was “ good there multitraded and that will see you into civviy street better “ he had worked with matelots during his time and said they could do the same job with half the blokes.... speaks volumes really. Much snobbery In crab land and they think rather too much of themselves on the most part my dads words not mine being a flem they were treated like shit by JT’s etc but funnily enough when he became a JT from a liney he shortly became a corporal probably due the the varied skill’s and experiences of being a liney! They no longer have mechanics so they got there way . As for the Hotel and treatment side I really think its a “grass is greener situation “ in reality. Although I hear its the other way round on JSF in regards to apparent “skills sets and quality “
 
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Alfacharlie

War Hero
RAF= Gay uniform.

RN= Still a gay uniform, but we're ace and the chicks love us more.

Oh, and we're allowed beards and shit like that!
 

Stirlin

War Hero
RAF= Gay uniform.

RN= Still a gay uniform, but we're ace and the chicks love us more.

Oh, and we're allowed beards and shit like that!
Back in the day tight clothing was the norm , high waisted strides skin tight to the knee then flaring out to 26 inch bottoms , tailored shirts and platform boots/shoes , so tight No 1 uniform with 7 creased bell bottoms we wus dogs bollocks . Nobody called us gay as Joe Civvy was in his sprayed on uniform.
 

Alfacharlie

War Hero
Back in the day tight clothing was the norm , high waisted strides skin tight to the knee then flaring out to 26 inch bottoms , tailored shirts and platform boots/shoes , so tight No 1 uniform with 7 creased bell bottoms we wus dogs bollocks . Nobody called us gay as Joe Civvy was in his sprayed on uniform.
^^See!!
 
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