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  1. #1
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    Question Getting Started in Avionics

    Hello! Just wanted to introduce myself and maybe get some advice on job hunting. I am just completing an Avionics Maintenance Technology certificate program in Charleston, SC. I just obtained my FCC license and GROL, and am planning to take the AET this summer. With only a couple months left, I am starting my search for a job in avionics to start gaining experience. I have some management experience (sales and retail), but I decided to change career paths. I also was a submarine sonar technician in the Navy several years back. Any advice on where to look for a foot in the door? Or places to avoid? I am open to moving out of Charleston for the right job, preferably to OKC or Texas. Iíve also seen a bunch of job postings in Savannah, GA that offer per diem if I commute, but Iím not sure what those jobs are like. I appreciate any feedback! Thanks!

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    I am not an avionics guy, but some guys here are. I guess the first question I have is a Line, swap boxes avionics guy? or one of the guys that can work on the boxes? Huge difference, also huge difference in possibilities.

    If its the Avionics Line type, where you understand Avionics and such, the best possibility is a Commuter Airline who hires Non A&P Avionics guys. A super strong backround /knowledge of electrical troubleshooting. principles, and wiring methods are invaluable. Some Avionics guys are simply A&P's with a better than average knowledge of everything electrical. 80% of A&P's could not use a complex schematic and find a bad wire on a 767 to save their lives.

    Steve
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the reply! I would lean more towards a "back shop" job, working on the boxes. However, it seems like for these jobs postings, they require actual experience to go along with training.

    I don't mind working my way up, but I don't want to limit myself or get pigeonholed.

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    Once you get all of you’re training done. Apply for every avionics job you see. Boeing has a big facility right at the airport. Learn what you can. Build up a tool box. Start networking.

    As you gain experience you can decide what field you want to work. Airlines, helicopters, install new systems in general aviation or back shop radio repair.

    You just need to get one person to take a chance and hire you.

    Good luck.

  5. #5
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    Get your A&P and increase your marketability.

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    So the feeling I'm getting from your reply, is that I'm not really in danger of picking the wrong path in these first two years. Once I gain that experience, then I can choose a specialized field? I am also seeing a trend, talking to recruiters and industry HR, that nobody cares about my background experience yet, whether it's management or anything else non "airplane" related.

    I am just trying to avoid heading down a path I can't get out of before I know anything.

    Thanks again for all the feedback so far!

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    I'm sorry to say, you might have a difficult time getting a start. I'd use the FAA database to search for possible employers. https://av-info.faa.gov/repairstation.asp
    Maybe select "Any Instrument" and "Any Radio" ???

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    Quote Originally Posted by GlennAB1 View Post
    Maybe select "Any Instrument" and "Any Radio" ???
    I'd offer just "Any Radio", but both may be helpful. With ADS-B installs on going, you might want to look for installation jobs too.

  9. #9
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    Well you have the raw materials for a good start. If you can do bench work you have a strong electrical knowledge. Also with an airline or repair station you can apply for a repairmens certificate, not the same as an A&P But a good thing to have. We have an unlicensed avionics guy here at my job. He is now in engineering making good money.

    Steve

    Quote Originally Posted by Jbliss1040 View Post
    So the feeling I'm getting from your reply, is that I'm not really in danger of picking the wrong path in these first two years. Once I gain that experience, then I can choose a specialized field? I am also seeing a trend, talking to recruiters and industry HR, that nobody cares about my background experience yet, whether it's management or anything else non "airplane" related.

    I am just trying to avoid heading down a path I can't get out of before I know anything.

    Thanks again for all the feedback so far!
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression

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    Does anyone have any thoughts or opinions concerning Federal vs Private aviation jobs? Pay, benefits, advancement, work environment, etc...?

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