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What workshop type skills do AET's learn?

08hjhi

Newbie
I've applied to be an AET and passed the RT test for it, however I just want to get a bit more insight into what AET's do other than the usual making sure the aircraft is ready to fly.

My main question is are AET's taught how to manufacture parts / learn good tool skills other than just using a spanner. Learning how to really work with materials and crafting parts using proper workshop type tools such as welders, drills presses, lathes etc is what I would love to do, but I'm not sure whether AET does actually cater for this.

If this is not part of an AET's role, is there other roles within the navy/forces that do use these skills?

Thanks.
 

redmonkey

Lantern Swinger
Book Reviewer
Due to the requirement to be able to trace all items fitted to aircraft we tend not to make our own parts as such.
We still do have some workshop engineering however at shore establishments that job is more civvy manned than RN
 

08hjhi

Newbie
Thanks for that information. Would you mind breaking down the sort of skills you've learnt as an AET, and how transferable do you think they are into civvie street? As opposed to just going to work as a civvie aircraft engineer.

Thanks.
 

Zoidberg

War Hero
You learn basic sheet metal and wiring.

On LAETs course you do a bit more then more on POs course.

For machining and what not, it's usually extra qualifications at a shore side workshop and you're not guaranteed to get those postings.

On LH course, MEs do a lot more welding and machining. If that's what interests you, I'd recommend going ME
 

redmonkey

Lantern Swinger
Book Reviewer
There are many different engineering skills.
Wiring diagrams, hydraulic engineering, control systems, digital techniques, pneumatics
Radio and radar theory.
System test and commissioning.
Automated systems.
Databus systems.
Fibre optics repair .
Quality control audits.
Engineer report writing.
Fault diagnosis.
Fault rectification.
Idiot testing of systems. The designers will design a system to run a set way. They often cannot see how others will use it or try and use it in a way they haven't imagined. Sometimes this can cause problems of unintended consequences and those need to be ironed out. By working closely with the design authority I managed to show how a system needed a few tweaks.
They did try asking why would I want to do things the way I did and the answer was because the system let's me even when there is no logical reason to want to do and it could be dangerous. Safer to not allow it than to tell use not to do it.

Most of these are fully transferable to the outside world not necessary aircraft engineering.

My last AE job I didn't touch an aircraft but I did most (not radio and radar) of the above.
 

08hjhi

Newbie
Thanks redmonkey, thats a really valuable insight and I appreciate it. Gives me a lot to look into and digest.
 

Waspie

War Hero
I thank @redmonkey for sparking my memory muscle.

One of my main reasons as a ALAM, (thats a Leading AET in old money). When doing my leading rates tech training at Daedalus. It was the workshop phase that put me off mechanician course. The thought of spending the remainder of my career possibly not working on aircraft put me off.

I enjoyed the first and second line servicing. Deep maintenance never appealed.

(Then I changed trades to Aircrewman - why fix em when you can break them!!)
 

Zoidberg

War Hero
There are many different engineering skills.
Wiring diagrams, hydraulic engineering, control systems, digital techniques, pneumatics
Radio and radar theory.
System test and commissioning.
Automated systems.
Databus systems.
Fibre optics repair .
Quality control audits.
Engineer report writing.
Fault diagnosis.
Fault rectification.
Idiot testing of systems.

Most of these skills won't be formally taught until killicks course, maybe even as a PO and even then some won't be available until you're in a workshop.
 
I would say that the making of parts would be very limited, to manufacture aircraft parts you need a Licence To Manufacture from the OEM, with the current RN Aircraft being very new I would suggest the OEM's keeps a good supply.

Aviation parts are subject to a lot of certification and unless you can prove your part meets the standards I wouldn't expect authority to manufacture.

Where I work now we work on legacy C-130's therefore its still bits of bent metal and not composites and 'unitainium' so we can produces bits and pieces. However we still need to get authority just in case LM can charge us a small fortune for a bracket that has been in their scrap cupboard for 40 years.
 

Taztiff

War Hero
I would say that the making of parts would be very limited, to manufacture aircraft parts you need a Licence To Manufacture from the OEM, with the current RN Aircraft being very new I would suggest the OEM's keeps a good supply.

Aviation parts are subject to a lot of certification and unless you can prove your part meets the standards I wouldn't expect authority to manufacture.

Where I work now we work on legacy C-130's therefore its still bits of bent metal and not composites and 'unitainium' so we can produces bits and pieces. However we still need to get authority just in case LM can charge us a small fortune for a bracket that has been in their scrap cupboard for 40 years.
I see your lot have got to play with the Elmer Marines now!
 

Zoidberg

War Hero
I would say that the making of parts would be very limited, to manufacture aircraft parts you need a Licence To Manufacture from the OEM, with the current RN Aircraft being very new I would suggest the OEM's keeps a good supply.

Aviation parts are subject to a lot of certification and unless you can prove your part meets the standards I wouldn't expect authority to manufacture.

Where I work now we work on legacy C-130's therefore its still bits of bent metal and not composites and 'unitainium' so we can produces bits and pieces. However we still need to get authority just in case LM can charge us a small fortune for a bracket that has been in their scrap cupboard for 40 years.

1710NAS get to do some manufacturing.
 
1710NAS get to do some manufacturing.
Yes, I agree, with the old Sea Kings and Lynx they were very busy (basic metal airframes), same as where I work we can do most stuff for legacy Hercs (H and earlier models), however when it comes to J's then LM have more of a say.

@Taztiff the USMC is a good contract for us, will keep the Hangars full for a while ;)

Any Wafu's looking for a job in Cambridge?
 

Waspie

War Hero
I've applied to be an AET and passed the RT test for it, however I just want to get a bit more insight into what AET's do other than the usual making sure the aircraft is ready to fly.

My main question is are AET's taught how to manufacture parts / learn good tool skills other than just using a spanner. Learning how to really work with materials and crafting parts using proper workshop type tools such as welders, drills presses, lathes etc is what I would love to do, but I'm not sure whether AET does actually cater for this.

If this is not part of an AET's role, is there other roles within the navy/forces that do use these skills?

Thanks.
Back to the original question. If manufacturing is what you want, have you tried looking at Leonardos Helicopter manufacturers brother manufactures such as Hughes etc. rather than the services.

In the RN it's a case of they, (Manufacturers), make the parts. As AET's you fit/replace and service them.

If fettling is your thing - then I'd be tempted to look elsewhere or you may get bored, fuelling, greasing, prepping for flight with occasional weapon loads thrown in. (That said, 11 years a grubber and I never got bored). We are all different.
 

slim

War Hero
I am certain that even though I left the service 35 years ago that the FAA still has an NDT (Non Destructive Testing) unit. NDT was normally the grubbers (airframe & engines) domain but I believe other trades may also have been involved.
A highly skilled qualification to hold and I would imagine useful to civie employers
 

WreckerL

War Hero
Super Moderator
I am certain that even though I left the service 35 years ago that the FAA still has an NDT (Non Destructive Testing) unit. NDT was normally the grubbers (airframe & engines) domain but I believe other trades may also have been involved.
A highly skilled qualification to hold and I would imagine useful to civie employers
My eldest boy was a fully spammed up NDT engineer with Flybe when he left the mob as an AET and got paid a fortune.

But not anymore, he's now a maintenance engineer as Flybe doesn't exist, although he's still on a good wage for this neck of the woods
 

Waspie

War Hero
I am certain that even though I left the service 35 years ago that the FAA still has an NDT (Non Destructive Testing) unit. NDT was normally the grubbers (airframe & engines) domain but I believe other trades may also have been involved.
A highly skilled qualification to hold and I would imagine useful to civie employers
Now you tell me!!!! I was on a squadron corrosion team for a year or so. Doing - yup NDT!!!!! Buggers never let on there was a separate qualification for it! (Mind you - me and the AEO never saw eye to eye as he had an aversion to the truth).
 
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