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Color Guard Rifleman
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Unit: GLR-MI-265

Grand Rapids Metro Cadet Squadron
« on: March 12, 2019, 11:56:23 AM »

I've been on a few missions and a lot of SAREX's with a coordinated aircrew and have rarely seen FLMs there guiding planes for takeoff and taxi. Does it only take place in certain mission areas or only if the search area is bigger than a certain size?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 05:06:15 PM by Color Guard Rifleman » Report to moderator   Logged
C/SMSgt Murphy Killeen, CAP
2019 MIWG Encampment Squadron 2 First Sergeant
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etodd
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Posts: 1,681

« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2019, 04:28:10 PM »

 Our wing tries to do it as much as possible. Usually with cadets that are training for it.

 Most pilots in my area are very acclimated to landing at airports where no one is there. Self-serve parking is the norm.

 But at a SAREX where there are lots of planes moving around, of course itís a great idea if there are people properly trained.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2019, 04:45:38 PM »

+1 I'd say it really depends on your area.

My Wing and Region has been moving away from the "let's all meet at the barn and put on a show"
mentality of mission training, opting more for leaving assets where the live and just assigning them
to a mission or sortie, since this would be much closer to real-world ops in most cases.

So while not unheard of, the days of 9 planes on the ramp by us are increasingly rare.
There's also the occasional air show that asks for help, but those are hit and miss as well.

We also operate out of a lot of commercial GA airports that have their own ramp rats
that need to park planes, etc.

It's still a viable rating, but whether you'll get work is decidedly local.
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Color Guard Rifleman
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Posts: 173
Unit: GLR-MI-265

Grand Rapids Metro Cadet Squadron
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2019, 05:07:23 PM »

+1 I'd say it really depends on your area.

My Wing and Region has been moving away from the "let's all meet at the barn and put on a show"
mentality of mission training, opting more for leaving assets where the live and just assigning them
to a mission or sortie, since this would be much closer to real-world ops in most cases.

So while not unheard of, the days of 9 planes on the ramp by us are increasingly rare.
There's also the occasional air show that asks for help, but those are hit and miss as well.

We also operate out of a lot of commercial GA airports that have their own ramp rats
that need to park planes, etc.

It's still a viable rating, but whether you'll get work is decidedly local.

So it would be used more in an area like Alaska and the Upper Peninsula (sometimes lower Michigan)?
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C/SMSgt Murphy Killeen, CAP
2019 MIWG Encampment Squadron 2 First Sergeant
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Spam
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Posts: 1,243
Unit: GA-001

« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2019, 05:25:18 PM »

From my pov...


I agree with the point Eclipse makes regarding the shift in operational employment on the flight line. As the typical SAR mission shifts towards a shorter timeline with fewer assets due to better intel (whether cell forensics, NTAP or improved TSO c91a elts) we just are not seeing the large ramps full of days of yore. 


On the other hand... The DR mission has always pushed a large sortie generation rate (SGR). In 1993 the SGR required to support our taskings for the Mississippi and Missouri floods pushed a need for a full time flight line system in Wentzville MO with crews arriving from 34 other Wings to help. Absolutely justified... I flew with multi Wing guests to our AO who needed guidance. Last year though I was on an active DR flight line which was carrying the bulk of photo recon over a hurricane path here in SER and it really didn't justify a FLM at all. In the near future we will field a multi aperture camera system which will let us reduce the SGR even further... imagine being able to image all of the Mexico Beach strike zone in one sortie. That means fewer tails on the deck and less need for FLMs.


I therefore believe that, like the CAP ground team mission, the days of FLM usefulness are waning fast. Its not based on search size aa you surmised but on SGR for the requested taskings and we are getting far more efficient at the work.


Good question there btw.


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« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2019, 05:36:17 PM »

One other thought. We should never be spending time and taxpayer treasure and incurring risk based on a self perception of worth. I.e. we should not go train people in X specialty just because we think its cool (even if useless) or because we think cadets should be fooled into thinking that they're investing their time and treasure in an area where they'll actually be used. Sending people out on sorties that burn cash and expose us to possible accidents needs to be weighed against customer based mission needs, not to justify hours to get or keep assets or to build a ribbon rack.


On that basis... Whats the perceived need to continue to put volunteer people out on active ramps with aircraft. Dubious I believe. There are related issues there with GTMs but thats for the other current thread on that...


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Color Guard Rifleman
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« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2019, 05:55:46 PM »

One other thought. We should never be spending time and taxpayer treasure and incurring risk based on a self perception of worth. I.e. we should not go train people in X specialty just because we think its cool (even if useless) or because we think cadets should be fooled into thinking that they're investing their time and treasure in an area where they'll actually be used. Sending people out on sorties that burn cash and expose us to possible accidents needs to be weighed against customer based mission needs, not to justify hours to get or keep assets or to build a ribbon rack.


On that basis... Whats the perceived need to continue to put volunteer people out on active ramps with aircraft. Dubious I believe. There are related issues there with GTMs but that's for the other current thread on that...


Vr
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How long do you think FLM and GTM will still be a CAP rating?
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C/SMSgt Murphy Killeen, CAP
2019 MIWG Encampment Squadron 2 First Sergeant
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Spam
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« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2019, 06:24:03 PM »

One other thought. We should never be spending time and taxpayer treasure and incurring risk based on a self perception of worth. I.e. we should not go train people in X specialty just because we think its cool (even if useless) or because we think cadets should be fooled into thinking that they're investing their time and treasure in an area where they'll actually be used. Sending people out on sorties that burn cash and expose us to possible accidents needs to be weighed against customer based mission needs, not to justify hours to get or keep assets or to build a ribbon rack.


On that basis... Whats the perceived need to continue to put volunteer people out on active ramps with aircraft. Dubious I believe. There are related issues there with GTMs but that's for the other current thread on that...


Vr
Spam

How long do you think FLM and GTM will still be a CAP rating?


I feel that all specialties should face periodic review as part of a broader, customer focused analysis of roles and missions ("how we fly fight and win", the USAF would say doctrinally). CAP however doesn't do doctrine pretty much at all. Our plans appear to me (over an alnost 40 year membership) to be based on other means than analyses of systems effectiveness and expressed customer need. It will be interesting to see if CAP can do away with ratings at all as we modernize per explicit customer requests. After all... USAF USN USMC and the Army all upgrade their aircraft but then generate rationalizations for retaining excess force structure and manning. Why would we be different.  Sigh.


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Color Guard Rifleman
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Posts: 173
Unit: GLR-MI-265

Grand Rapids Metro Cadet Squadron
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2019, 06:36:07 PM »

One other thought. We should never be spending time and taxpayer treasure and incurring risk based on a self perception of worth. I.e. we should not go train people in X specialty just because we think its cool (even if useless) or because we think cadets should be fooled into thinking that they're investing their time and treasure in an area where they'll actually be used. Sending people out on sorties that burn cash and expose us to possible accidents needs to be weighed against customer based mission needs, not to justify hours to get or keep assets or to build a ribbon rack.


On that basis... Whats the perceived need to continue to put volunteer people out on active ramps with aircraft. Dubious I believe. There are related issues there with GTMs but that's for the other current thread on that...


Vr
Spam

How long do you think FLM and GTM will still be a CAP rating?


I feel that all specialties should face periodic review as part of a broader, customer focused analysis of roles and missions ("how we fly fight and win", the USAF would say doctrinally). CAP however doesn't do doctrine pretty much at all. Our plans appear to me (over an almost 40 year membership) to be based on other means than analyses of systems effectiveness and expressed customer need. It will be interesting to see if CAP can do away with ratings at all as we modernize per explicit customer requests. After all... USAF USN USMC and the Army all upgrade their aircraft but then generate rationalizations for retaining excess force structure and manning. Why would we be different.  Sigh.


Vr
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So basically no matter what CAP will still teach it even though it is sorta being phased out? So it will still be taught at Blue Beret?
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C/SMSgt Murphy Killeen, CAP
2019 MIWG Encampment Squadron 2 First Sergeant
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time With Silver Clasp
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Posts: 30,008

« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2019, 06:36:58 PM »

How long do you think FLM and GTM will still be a CAP rating?

I wouldn't expect them to go away any time soon, and probably not during your cadet career.

They still are used, and could be used more, the main problem is that without any doctrine, members are expected
to get qual'ed and then wind up with either no missions at all, or in situations where the
training doesn't apply to the need.

Exceedingly rare is a situation in which CAP GTs actually need to crack an MRE, land-nav with a compass,
or sleep in the field during a real-world.

Bear in mind, also, the turns the CP has been and is taking more towards STEM.

An aviation-focused organization like CAP gets value from having its members know about marshaling
airplanes, being self-reliant in times of distress, etc., but perhaps if it was emphasized more as career
exploration / life skills and less in the vein of the expectation they will get used, there would be more engagement.

I've always advocated that things like FLM, UDF, fieldcraft, etc., should be part and parcel of cadet progression
not a tangential (if we get to it) 5th-Saturday activity.

Personally I think this is one of the areas in which the CP fails when compared to the BSA, with the granting that
their stated goals are different, the BSA focus is on life skills vs the amorphous "leadership", resulting
in a lot more wrench-turning and a lot less Linebacker II.

Both my kids are working on their Eagle projects, and while the typical Scout meeting would
give a CAP CC an aneurysm due to the lack of structure, they can weld, use wood working machines,
know some things about auto mechanics, shooting, photography, and 20 other skills that they will use
the rest of their lives.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 06:46:34 PM by Eclipse » Report to moderator   Logged


etodd
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« Reply #10 on: March 12, 2019, 07:08:39 PM »


I've always advocated that things like FLM, UDF, fieldcraft, etc., should be part and parcel of cadet progression
not a tangential (if we get to it) 5th-Saturday activity.

Personally I think this is one of the areas in which the CP fails when compared to the BSA, with the granting that
their stated goals are different, the BSA focus is on life skills vs the amorphous "leadership", resulting
in a lot more wrench-turning and a lot less Linebacker II.

Both my kids are working on their Eagle projects, and while the typical Scout meeting would
give a CAP CC an aneurysm due to the lack of structure, they can weld, use wood working machines,
know some things about auto mechanics, shooting, photography, and 20 other skills that they will use
the rest of their lives.

Another good post Eclipse.  I know I downplay a lot of things here online, but I don't qualify enough by saying I'm virtually always referring to Seniors.

I fully agree of Cadets being taught all types of skills, from outdoor ones, to indoor STEM, and much more. Even something like working together as a team on the asphalt doing FLM, gives them things they will use no matter their career later.  While I think CAP will evolve a lot for its Senior members over the next decade or two, I hope many of the Cadet activities will just keep improving. I'm optimistic.
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