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Old Aug 11, 12, 9:13 am
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: CLT
Posts: 181
For a mechanic it depends on how you want to get your training: 2600 hrs of classroom/lab instruction at an accepted par 147 school, or 18/30 months of documented OJT working under a certificated mechanic (one or both ratings on certificate). The above includes 3 written tests and 3 oral/practical exams with an FAA designated examiner. Can incur some debt depending on how you get the training, but not as bad as flight training can be.

Hours and pay will depend on where you end up. GA and corporate can be good, but may be more driven on billable hours worked. Airlines are predominately an hourly position with a payscale that can be affected by union/non-union and the company size, and run 24/7. One drawback to airline work is you can, and most likely will, end up working in inclement WX condititions (rain/heat/cold/etc), and possibly sent to an outstation to recover a stranded plane.

I'll give my perspective as a regional mechanic: starting pay is poor compared to a mainline carrier, but has improved a little from when I started. Hours are shift driven, and new people will generally be on 3rd shift for a while (could be many years depending on how shifts are bid/awarded, and turnover in the company). Being mechanically inclined and liking to work with your hands is a help, but not always required.
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