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Home Page Version 2 Forums Air Force CSO/ABM and Flight Hours

  • CSO/ABM and Flight Hours

    Posted by Cali on April 19, 2024 at 8:28 am

    Hi all,

    I know everyone and their mother is here to be a (fighter) pilot, and I’m not going to lie, I was among that crowd at first (my mother is not). I was doing more research into CSO/ABM and they seem like interesting career fields.

    My question is, do flight hours increase competitiveness for these roles? For example, to be competitive for a pilot slot you need 60+ hours, does that hold true for all rated fields, or is it just pilot?

    Thanks!

    -Cali

    JimmyDean replied 1 month ago 7 Members · 11 Replies
  • 11 Replies
  • Husky

    Member
    April 19, 2024 at 11:23 am
    5500 BogiPoints

    There’s not a lot of hard data for ABM/CSO, but some flight hours signals dedication, familiarity with flight and….that you won’t puke all over the screens…no one wants that. 10hrs? Maybe solo, after that I think the marginal value decreases.

    I’ve worked with a lot of CSOs downrange in the stack – they do great work. SOCOM just bought the OA-1K sky warden – that looks like an awesome machine. Better yet the OK ANG is going to be the schoolhouse. I wouldn’t be surprised if the CSOs became FAC(A) which would be super rewarding. Hit My Smoke!

    Cheers

    Husky

    https://www.airforcetimes.com/news/your-air-force/2022/12/12/oklahoma-air-guard-base-tapped-as-likely-armed-overwatch-schoolhouse/

    • Cali

      Member
      April 19, 2024 at 11:51 am
      2195 BogiPoints

      Husky,

      I read about that mission a while ago and would totally be part of that given the opportunity! Thanks for the input.

      -Cali

      • Husky

        Member
        April 21, 2024 at 1:27 pm
        5500 BogiPoints

        As if on cue!

  • JimmyDean

    Member
    April 19, 2024 at 4:08 pm
    1335 BogiPoints

    Cali,

    I am currently a C-130 Navigator (CSO), I had a private pilot prior to getting hired. I think it helped in getting hired, but it really helped me going through training having that experience to fall back on. Feel free to send any CSO questions my way if I don’t know it I know people who will.

    – Dean

    • Jaybird

      Member
      April 22, 2024 at 10:45 am
      760 BogiPoints

      I have a C-130 CSO interview coming up next month. What specific questions might be asked or were you asked that might not be listed on the Bogidope question bank?

      • JimmyDean

        Member
        June 12, 2024 at 3:58 pm
        1335 BogiPoints

        Just now seeing this, how did it go?

  • THORN

    Member
    April 21, 2024 at 4:11 pm
    1625 BogiPoints

    Cali

    I’m a active duty B-52 WSO and through my experience going back through 2015, pilot hours don’t help much with applying for a CSO position past 10 hours. What really helps is the Nav portion of your AFOQT, and the land navigation skills you learn from flying to help you get through the CSO training pipeline. Also, having a PPL will eliminate the need for you to go through IFT (initial flight training), even CSOs go through a modified IFT

  • Husky

    Member
    April 30, 2024 at 5:15 pm
    5500 BogiPoints

    @RXW move quick and you can make this board.

    • RXW

      Member
      May 5, 2024 at 11:00 pm
      1565 BogiPoints

      Husky,

      Thanks for looking out! I’m on it, the board opened a little quicker than I was ready for but getting everything worked into a good final product now. That’s my dream job!

      V/r,

      RXW

  • Beav

    Member
    May 6, 2024 at 4:33 pm
    6105 BogiPoints

    Let me chime in here. I am a retired F-15E WSO. Here is a huge piece of advice about ratings that I wish I knew years ago. You will need them in order to count any hours you get in the back seat to PIC time.

    Having a PPL- SEL and PPL- SEL with an instrument rating (and high performance btw) would help you immensely in this process.

    I am unsure about the skyward and what they plan to do with the stick, throttle and instrumentation…but that will matter. This will come in handy for you post your military service in the case that you don’t upgrade to the front seat at some point. Always keep your options open.

    -Beav

    • Husky

      Member
      May 6, 2024 at 4:37 pm
      5500 BogiPoints

      Perhaps the best advice ever!

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