Loadmaster, Flight Engineer???

JGriffis

New Member
Are the two the same thing?? I've read their descriptions and both sound identical...some units list it as load master and some as flight engineer?? Same or different??
 

ShoreFly

Well-Known Member
Way different.

If the plane was a resturaunt, it would be like the difference between being the chef and the waiter, no slam intended. Depending on what aircraft you're on, an FE's duties consist mainly of preparing the cockpit for flight, running t/o and landing data, inspecting the aircraft prior to flight, and running the systems during flight.

The loadmaster's responsibility generally focuses aft of the cockpit door, and includes cargo loading and passenger handling.

If you're looking at this for the purposes of being a pilot someday, FE is the way to go. In all aircraft you get navigation, performance, aerodynamics, communication, systems...etc. experience, which is a perfect lead in to a pilot career. It's the closest job you’ll find to being a pilot, in fact we train side by side on just about everything. That's why the FAA allows one-third (up to 500) of Part 121 FE hours to count towards the ATP.
 

viper548

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Way different.

If the plane was a resturaunt, it would be like the difference between being the chef and the waiter, no slam intended. Depending on what aircraft you're on, an FE's duties consist mainly of preparing the cockpit for flight, running t/o and landing data, inspecting the aircraft prior to flight, and running the systems during flight.

The loadmaster's responsibility generally focuses aft of the cockpit door, and includes cargo loading and passenger handling.

If you're looking at this for the purposes of being a pilot someday, FE is the way to go. In all aircraft you get navigation, performance, aerodynamics, communication, systems...etc. experience, which is a perfect lead in to a pilot career. It's the closest job you’ll find to being a pilot, in fact we train side by side on just about everything. That's why the FAA allows one-third (up to 500) of Part 121 FE hours to count towards the ATP.

[/ QUOTE ]

I'd say its closer to a busboy and a dishwasher. I would not reccomend being a flight engineer because it requires ALOT of training. C-5 flight engineers take 2 years to become fully qualified, more time than it takes the pilots to get qualified!!! That time could be used for going to college/getting flight ratings, etc. When it comes to interviewing for a pilot spot in the AF, being a FE doesn't help any more than being a loadmaster does.
 

JGriffis

New Member
If you had a strong desire to fly and were going going to enlist do you think these would be your two choices?
 

Mike Lewis

Shadow Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
If you had a strong desire to fly and were going going to enlist do you think these would be your two choices?

[/ QUOTE ]

I would look into boom operator as well.
 

Mike Lewis

Shadow Administrator
Staff member
In the Air Force, they use the boom method of refueling instead of the Navy/NATO use of probe and drogue. And the role of the boom operator is to actually "fly" the boom into the receptacle of the receiving aircraft and offload the fuel.

And I believe that since the KC-135/KC-10 are also capable of carrying cargo that they have many of the same responsibilties of the loadmaster.

I've been a passenger on a lot of refueling missions, and it's always really cool to lie in the back and watch the boom operator refuel an aircraft. If you ever get the chance, do it, as it is a different perspective from flying (looking straight down out of the back) than one normally gets flying up front or in the passenger section.
 

ShoreFly

Well-Known Member
JG,

The Boomer is the other enlisted guy on my aircraft, the KC-10. His primary duties are:
1. Inflight Refueling
2. "Loadmaster"
3. "Flight Attendant"
4. Getting the flight lunches.

I'm trying not to be bias towards the side of the FE, but if they offer you a Flight Engineer position and you want to become a pilot (military or civilian), take it. Being an FE will put you many steps ahead of all other enlisted positions as far as aviation knowledge and air sense, I'm not quite sure what Viper was saying. However, the "Boom" interacts more with the cockpit crew than a "Load" normally does. In order, here's what I'd tell a new guy to choose if he wants to someday be a pilot:
1. Fixed-wing FE
2. Helo FE
3. Boom Operator
4. Loadmaster
5. Crew Chief

I've been three out of five of those during the last 13 years, so you can take my opinion for what you think it's worth. Good Luck!
 

viper548

Well-Known Member
If I had to do it over again I'd choose being a Boom over being a Load. Chaining down vehicles in Kuwait in July is not fun, especially in a flight suit.
 

Herkyload1

New Member
For more Loadmaster info check out http://www.loadmasters.com/ that is our association web site..(Btw you won't find a FE association, the switch monkeys can't get away from the banana's long enough to start one!) J/K Eng
Here is a FE page to check out: http://www.2xtreme.net/%7Efekc10/engineer/

http://pub33.ezboard.com/fc130herculesheadquartersfrm2
Here would be another place to ask a few questions since you are looking at Herk’s, there are quite a few active/guard/reserve/retired guys on the board with quite a bit of info.

My .02, I went in active duty as a Load from the get go, I wanted to fly, but the only 2 options (for me) were Boom and Load. Fe’s were/are not usually accepted right in (IE; Pipeline from basic) There is also a few awac’s flying jobs, but they are not usually looked at as “real” aircrew because they have no actual function in the flying of the Aircraft.
Shorefly was talking about crew interaction, and I can only speak about 130 crew’s we had a very good interaction with the front end, both the FE and the Officers, that chaining down equipment in Kuwait on a nice August day usually involved myself (the load) and usually one of the crew, FE/Aircraft Commander/Co-pilot/Navigator and on some missions they all would be back helping. It was a “crew” aircraft we all put something in to make the mission happen. Being a Load (on 130’s) is usually Hot, dirty, busy work, which other people didn't like doing, but I loved every flight, and every hour doing it. If you want more info just shoot me a email

P.S. the whole reason for that multi-million dollar aircraft whether it’s a C-130, C-5 or C-17 is for those college boys up front to get the Load some place so he can do his job!

Praise The Load!!

Fly fast, Live slow
Herkyload1@aol.com
 
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