RAF REG Gunner.. Few Questions :P Watch

Gaz187
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Hey guys/gals!

First post!

Been reading this forum for about an hour now and decided to sign up to it..
Hopefully you can take some time to read this...

Just want to ask a few questions cos' basically, I'm scared ****less haha!!!

I've got my Physcometric Test on the 11th of this month, basically a week away, and I'm fairly confident that I'll do good on it, I have no worries about my fitness as I got 8 Minutes 30 Seconds in the mile and a half on the treadmill last Thursday, and last time I did the bleep test I got 14.1... I'm always doing sports and I'm on a Uniformed Services course in college which is basically lots of physical fitness, mostly strength.

What's worrying me the most is after training.. what actually happens if you've passed all 22/29 weeks? I know you get assigned to a squadron, but what happens when assigned?

How long would it be until I get sent away to a different country after I've been assigned?

Also, I'm more of a relationship guy with girls, and well I'm single at the moment, but I like having a girlfriend, is there really time for this when being in the RAF Regiment?

How long would you say it will be until I start training, guessing that I pass all the Physcometric Tests and PJFT...

Finally... I've heard a lot of people on different forums claiming that the RAF Regiment Gunners don't see that much action at all, now I don't mind not being front line all the time, but I would love to be in the thick of the action from time to time going on ops and stuff... what can you tell me about this?

Thanks guys! :P
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AC Bloggs
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When it comes to relationships, it depends what you mean by 'time' really. Time to talk to her on the phone most days while in training? Yes. I'm not in the reigment so can't speak specifically about their training, but for the most part, unless you get married or live off base (not normally allowed, and this is after you've graduated as a gunner mind) then you wont get to see your other half other than on weekends generally. That's certainly how it works with most people I've met anyway. Then again life in the Regiment is a little different to most trades.

Not a clue about selection times, varies hugely on a number of factors.

And don't worry, in the modern climate, as a gunner, you will most likely be 'in the think of it' before you know what's happened, and prossibly more often than you might want, just something to consider.
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Isis07
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Best advice I can give you here is to contact RAF Honnington and ask for a station visit; explaining you really want to find out more about what life would be like as a rgt gunner. Hopefully they'll let you chat to a couple of the lads about the sort of things you've raised here, and will give you a better idea of life after training.

If you're interested and show it, act attentive and smart no-one is going to give you anything but credit for doing some research prior to joining up. The worst thing they can do is say no, but I can't imagine they would to be honest.
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Gaz187
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Thanks guys, well before the let you start the proper 29 weeks training you have to do a PGAC... Potential Gunners Acquaintance Course... This lasts 2 or 3 days, hopefully I'll get my date for this sometime this month!

I'm not a very good swimmer either so I guess I should get a little bit better also hehe.

**EDIT**

Hey guys, something happened today which kinda confused me a lot, a lecturer in my college on my Uniformed Services course is a Captain in the Army, I've known him for a while now, I asked him for a reference and he asked what I was joining, I said RAF Regiment Gunners, and he was saying that I am a lot better then that and have a lot more potential and should consider revising something else like the Royal Engineers, to get a trade.

In a way I guess he's right, cos' he said the only job I'm going to get later on in life if I be a gunner is something like a bodyguard in civvie street...

But tbh, nothing else in the RAF interests me apart from the Fire Service, and I was thinking of getting my driving license with the gunners, staying for 4 years, when I'm 22 switch over to the firefighters if that is possible...

Anyone know the prospects of the RAF Gunners? Cos' I would really like to do this, but my lecturer believes cos' of my GCSE's and A Level Equivlency I have, and the amount of physical fitness I have, I can be so much more... CONFUSED!!! :O

Thanks guys!
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steveh1989
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I start my TG course on the 22nd, so I've got all the answers to these questions fairly fresh in my head....

after the 29 weeks, you'll be fully trained, so theoretically you can be posted overseas straight away (Providing you're 17.5 or older)

With regards to leave once you're with your Sqn, unless you're on exercise/ops, its pretty much 9-5 work, so your free time is your own to do what you want with.

You'll get hardly any free time during the 29 weeks of training

Trainee Gunner courses start every 3 weeks, so its just down to when you have your interviews at the AFCO etc, but it took me 3 months, from initial application to start of TG.


Personally, I think the RAF is miles better than the Army. Regiment guys are better trained and better looked after (you'll see this on your PGAC) but also you get qualifications such as NVQ2 in Policin and Security, so you can come out and join Civvy police, or any Civvy emergency service, but you can also get degrees that the RAF will pay for, so you can come out and get any job you want basically.

RAF Regt is a specialist unit, which bears similarities to Marines and Paras, with better benefits though.
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Gaz187
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Thanks steveh You seem to know what you're on about also! I've wanted to join the Police since I was like 10, but realised that it won't happen unless I have life experience and it looks like the RAF Regiment will give me more then I bargained for to get into the Police.

Maybe do a tour with you one day haha. Good luck on your TG course!
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threeportdrift
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Don't know enough about you, your personal or educational quals but I would offer two points to be aware of:

1. Beware professional 'blinkers', that is the view that no-one in any of the other Services is as good as the people in your Service. It's fine if it stays at the level of banter, it's irresponsible if it is offered as genuine careers advice.

2. Your career after the Services is based on a lot more than the actual 'piece of paper' qualifications you have. Future employers are more likely to judge you on the general qualities they perceive in Service personnel eg task focus, teamwork, leadership etc. That is much more important than a couple of NVQs and a BTEC. As an ex-Gunner you are going to have a lot more opportunities than body-guarding.
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Gaz187
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Thanks threeportdrift! I was a bit confused when my lecturer told me this, he's never seemed to like me anyways so I guess he probably meant to confuse me lol.

Hopefully I'll pass my physcometric tests on Wednesday.
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Leppard-Wright
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Hats off to Steveh, accurate answers. I'm on the same TG matey, leaving on Sat the 21st to start admin on Sunday 22nd. Hope all goes well for you.

To the guy enquiring,
1st thing that made me 'laugh out loud' was the fact the Army guy said that you should try better, sounded like he was snubbing the RAF which is definately not uncommon from the Army.
The RAF Regt doesnt limit you to holding a gun and patrolling bases year in-year out. You get a non-repayable learning grant every year and will be able to get Uni Degrees, A-Levels or even just re-take your GCSE's. Theres loads of Squadrons with loads of oppurtunities. E.G NBC Squadron, learn how to protect from Chem/Bio warfare. 2 SQ, get your para wings after a 10 week extensive pre-para training course which is highly sought throughout all the forces. You can also volunteer for arctic warfare training where I think they take you to a remote area in Canada. Jungle Warfare training, used to be in Sierra Leone but has moved somewhere. And also Desert training.

Regarding the relationship questions, to cut to the point, if you are happy to have a girlfriend and only see her a half the year than you are fine, its just the other way round you have to look at it, 75% of girls probably wont be interested in someone they only see half the year unless its properly serious. I have a gf and have been together for 2 years now and we're going to see how it goes from next week (TG).

PGAC is a pretty easy affair, bleep test, sit ups, press ups, 50m swim (piss even for the weakest swimmer) and the 3 mile run which is the killer for a few people.

The RAF Regt are recruiting very quickly at the moment so if your at the aptitude test stage now, expect the test, then a formal interview, then a medical, pgac, final interview, TG. Usualy would take between 6-10 weeks but from what other PGAC lads were saying, your looking at anything between 3-8 weeks.

Hope the very long winded answer helps you out. I'm 19 and have wanted to be in the Regt since I was 15. Absolubtely kicking myself I didn't join up then.

Oh, and yes. The Regt are right in the thick of it matey
And we all get new guns next year.
+++great pay. £13,013 for 29 weeks as 'AC' then move on to 'LAC' then after a year the pay jumps up to £16,000 'SAC'. Loads of aspects of promotion etc. Food and rent in Honington is daylight robbery (for them) we get it cheap as piss. Can't really fail the aptitude test, I got 96% on the whole thing and I think you only need about 33% to pass.

Good luck !
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Gaz187
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Wow thanks Leppard-Wright, appreciate the information. I'm happy about the weakest swimmer part, because I really do suck at swimming haha. I think I'm going to go to the baths a few times and get a bit better.

There seems like a lot of propects from the gunners, I don't think there is from basic infantry in the Army. I want to try that artic and jungle warfare! The PGAC seems fairly easy as you said, 3-8 weeks, I hope so!

Oh, I'm also 18 at the moment, I think I've signed up at the right time, I finish college on the 20th of this month, and I'm the fitest and strongest I've ever been so this must help a lot.

Maybe see you sometime! On a tour? Hehe.

Thanks dude.
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Leppard-Wright
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Yeah any age 17+ is good because there are people in tg at 16 who won't be allowed on tour after TG so they will have to spend at least 12-18 months in the UK watching everyone leaving for the nice hot blue skies and sand (Iraq-Afghan).
The 2 major differences between Army Infantry/RAF Regt
1: We get trained on more things from gear to warfare
2: They take anyone, the Regt is much more selective on trainees.

I take it that your college course is either city & Guilds or full on A-Levels? If they are A-Levels, why choose Aircrew over Officer?

Also just noticed your a Scoucer :P I met a good mate on here whos from Liverpool going on the same TG course as me.

Are you currently doing any training?

Edit: Have you looked into the Squadrons, if yes, which ones would you want to go for initially?
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Gaz187
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Full on A-Levels, choosing aircrew over officer because I want to be in the fighting with the boys! Hehe.

I do lots of training a week, to get myself as fit as I can for the PGAC and TG.

I've looked a little bit into the Squadrons, 51 seems like the one for me at the moment. Which one are you interested in?
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by Gaz187)
Full on A-Levels, choosing aircrew over officer because I want to be in the fighting with the boys!

I presume you mean Groundcrew? Aircrew = Pilot, WSO or WSOp.

Everyone else is Groundcrew - although that term is usually limited to those who work closely with the aircraft, ie the engineering team, movers etc.

Regt Gunner is a Ground Trade, Regt Officer is a Ground Branch.

And you are always best off going for the highest entry point that your qualifications allow, so if you have the minimum quals for Officer, look very closely at entering at that level. This is the next 20ish years of your life you could be preparing for, not just the next couple of years.
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PasserBy9
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Yeah, I think he may have meant Airman, but still, Gunner would have been a better term to use.

It's just all the small terms that are easy for people in the services but slightly confusing for people joining up.
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Gaz187
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Yeah sorry guys, I actually knew that, don't know why I let myself look dumb haha..

Anyways... I have my physchometric test today, in about an hour or so... wish me luck!
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Gaz187
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I passed! YAY

The corporal guy said to me "You got a very, very high score for a gunner." Hehe...

Just a question guys, it says, if you get to goto the PGAC, if you are coming from 50 miles away, get a taxi from the train station and make sure you get a reciept so they can reinburse you, this means you pay the taxi guy, ask for a receipt, then goto where you have to go and they will give you the money back?

Also, what is this new gun the Regiment are getting next year?
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Q_M
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Is it that sniper rifle everyones raving about? Meh dunno.

Well done though on your test mate.
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Gaz187
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Thanks man (Sorry about the double post)...

One last question along with the taxi one I asked also... How long is the TG course? The RAF guys keep saying its 22 weeks, someone told me it was 29. Hmmm.
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Marc577
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when i went on my PGAC we all waited at bury st edmunds train station for a coach to come collect us for a specific time this was at 21.00 for us, presume this should be the same even if you live close by. Should get this information sent to you from afco after your medical.

The TG course is also 29 weeks now as it combines the field gunners course, however you still graduate at 22 weeks and receive your mudguards hope this helped
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Gaz187
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Thanks mate

It's just that it says if you're travelling from more then 50 miles away which I am, you should turn up on Monday after 3pm and get a taxi from the train station...
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