Swords into Plowshares.....Army radio stuff, Part 4

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by KL7AJ, Aug 29, 2016.

  1. KL7AJ

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 4, 2008
    Although I've never been active duty in any military service, I've worked on military radios and radars for about 45 years....concurrent with my other careers in broadcasting and science. As a contractor, I've generally stayed around my different devices longer than the G.I.'s I work with just because of the nature of the game. So I have TONS of practical experience on everything from hydraulics to radar.

    As I've mentioned before, the venerable Signal Corps is no more. Most of the signal command folks are really just I.T. folks; i's really hard to find an old school radio man any more...and even the radar pukes are getting harder to find.

    On the plus side of this....it's probably a good sign that the military electronics has gotten so reliable that things can be kept up and running with a few card swappers. I suppose if the Army really NEEDED high end technician/engineer hybrids amongst the troops, they'd be screaming for them....but I haven't seen much indication of this. The Armed services seem to be content to leave the hard stuff to the contractors (like me)....which isn't necessarily a new thing...it's been this way since the Cold War. Not complaining, either, mind you; they're probably paying me a lot more than I'm worth....MOST of the time. When there's a major crash, I do earn my keep.

    Which brings me to the topic at hand....."retooling" G.I.'s for careers in the marketplace. Except for a few hard core "lifers," most of the troops I encounter do plan on re-entering normal life with a LOT of good career years ahead of them. This weekend on Ft. Wainwright, there was a big re-entry/career fair event to help with doing just that. I passed out a lot of my QSL and business cards, and we'll see if that maybe leads somewhere. Most of the folks I administer the GROL test for are Army folks who are looking for jobs in telecomm....for which there seem to be a LOT of open positions here in the Far North.

    One thing I would LOVE to do would be to do a complete update of the venerable Naval Electrical and Electronics Training system (NEETS)program. For anyone in radio, it's well known that the NEETS program was the most comprehensive and effective program ever developed for generating competent electronics techs in a hurry....and was widely employed by all the armed services. It just hasn't had a full update in a few decades....some of the technology is a bit aged, but the methodology is wonderful. "Tell 'em what you're gonna tell 'em, then tell 'em...then tell 'em what you told 'em."

    Anyhoo,,,,,from my office in the historic HANGAR ONE in the center of Ladd Field, I get a free airshow every day......a sky full of Chinooks, Apaches and Black Hawks. I'm sure most of us long for the day when we won't need military helicopters....or military anything elses....but for the time being, it's a pretty nice job.

  2. Kermit2

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 5, 2010
    Radar pukes! I resemble that remark. :)

    (Served me well in my career, including a job fixing weather radars for TV stations in the 80's and 90's)
  3. KL7AJ

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 4, 2008
    This is very true....unfortunately, nobody seems to be conveying to the "yutes" that radar is a lot more fun than I.T. :)