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Old 01-29-2011, 00:09   #1
Killaton
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Soon off to basic.

I am soon going off to basic training for the USAF and I was just wondering if anyone had a couple of pointers. My job will be firefighter when I am out of basic and off to Goodfellow AFB for tech school. I will be pretty much the oldest man there at basic since I am 27 years old, but at least I have been working as a firefighter now since 2006. I worked for cal fire and already have my fire academy under my belt. I would appreciate any information. Thanks.
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Old 01-29-2011, 00:58   #2
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Congradulations! I never served, but the advice given to me to pass on to my buddy going into the military was:

Never volunteer for anything & Never smile!
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:42   #3
Killaton
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I have heard thanks. My twin brother was a Marine for 5 years so I somewhat know, but that's marines no air force lol.
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Old 01-29-2011, 10:42   #4
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I went through in Lackland in 1986 and I know some things have changed. My son in law went through in 2007 and one thing that hasn't is "Do not do anything more than the TI asks and do not do anything less than the TI asks" No matter what your education is it is BASIC Training and they want you to be able to follow SIMPLE instructions. Then they will build on that and as your rank increases after BMT you can make a decisions and think outside the box so to speak.

Good luck
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Old 01-29-2011, 11:31   #5
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When you get off the bus, find a tall and/or goofy looking guy to stand next to. If you're tall you're stuck. Someone goofy/tall/odd looking will take the heat during the initial "shark attack".

Bring a bag big enough to bring everything they told you PLUS everything you're wearing, a gym type bag being recommended. Use the little airline type combo locks on everything as since we all know, there's only one thief in <insert every branch here> the rest are just "trying to get their &!@& back".

Bring more cash than they tell you, around $40 in small bills (5's and 10s). If you have a debit card through a major bank (visa/american express accepted) then you should bring it too, since if you're some 18 yr old who has a card from West Bhum *** Federal Credit Union the ATM cards on base will go "who the hell are you?"

You don't spend much in BMT, but having the option IS good.

I went in at 27, PM me if you want specific details, I went through in 2005 so it's changed some since then too.
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Old 01-29-2011, 13:40   #6
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Thanks a ton again guys, it really means a lot you guys giving me all this info. What would be interesting is that I have a friend that works there at Lackland AFB as a MTI, now how odd would that be if he ended up being my Training Instructor. I have known him since i was in Junior High. But the chances of that happening are pretty slim. I think i will be doing pretty well when i go off to basic. I have already spent massive lengths of time away from home with CAL Fire. Since there was a lot of "out of county assignments." My wife will probably have the hardest time getting used it it since the longest time i have spent away from home is 1 month, and when i mean one month i mean 1 month for 24 hours a day 7 days a week for a month. Being in the fire fighter training was pretty close to military style but obviously not 100% accurate. I think being used to getting yelled at will be a plus. Yeah i have a huge advantage over the kids that are 18 coming from Mommas house!
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Old 01-29-2011, 14:17   #7
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I was in BMT in 1995 so my info isn't current, but some of what I would have said has already been stated. I would add bring shower shoes (they will be on your packing list, so don't ignore what's on that list) otherwise you'll be showering in any athletic shoes you may have brought which will end up in your luggage...wet...and will turn into a moldy mess by the time you see them again. Since you'll be going to "Good Buddy" for tech school, and if you aren't already married or have a girlfriend, I'll say enjoy the company of the vast number of female pipeline students who are there for the various intelligence schools. The caveat is don't get married while in tech school, especially to them since you'll have a difficult time getting a joint spouse assignment unless they're a 1N0 or 1N1 as many of the bases where the other 1Ns go to are Army installations where you won't be able to get stationed. Angelo State University is another good choice of locales to hangout at as well since it's a liberal art school, which translates to a large, female student population.
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Old 01-29-2011, 16:03   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMurphy View Post
When you get off the bus, find a tall and/or goofy looking guy to stand next to. If you're tall you're stuck. Someone goofy/tall/odd looking will take the heat during the initial "shark attack".
<insert every="" branch="" here="">


When we got off the bus they asked people's last names and were using that to start their "shark attack". We got off those long blue buses and got into all these lines and they sharks charged right up to their victims.
</insert>
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Old 01-29-2011, 16:11   #9
meeko
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One other thing! Do not wear ANYTHING that says any state you may be from or collage you might have attended or any geographic anything. The ones that do will get zeroed in on (or they did in the old days). And you don't want to be rememberd as "that guy"

Last edited by meeko; 01-29-2011 at 16:12..
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Old 01-29-2011, 17:25   #10
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The purpose of basic training is to test your ability to mentally and physically follow detailed instructions under stress,
and to determine if you're trainable and can meet that service's standards.

If you can't complete a service's basic training, you probably can't succeed
in that service.

They want to know right from the start if you are worth spending thousands
and sometimes millions of dollars to train you.

Now, you know why they'll have you doing (questionable) stuff that seems to serve no
purpose. They're testing your ability to follow detailed instructions under stress.

It's just a test, and it will be over before you know it.

Above all else: Keep your eyes and ears open, and your mouth shut!

Good Luck.
Jim B./ USAF MSgt Retired

Last edited by JBnTX; 01-29-2011 at 17:28..
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Old 01-29-2011, 18:01   #11
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I went through 2 years ago come February, I was also 27. It's not bad by any means, more annoying than anything. The 8 week program was roughly 2 months old and you could tell they really didn't know what to do with all the extra time. There was LOT of downtime which equates to sitting in the day room, standing in formation or marching around the pad for hours on end.

You will be given "memory work" to memorize. It's nothing but a few sheets of paper with ranks, M16 information and chain of command information. Do yourself a favor and memorize it ASAP. I cannot stress enough how important it is, for they will question you on it every chance they get. If you don't know it, you pay for it, enough said.

Your phone will be taken from you separate of your clothing. It will be put in an envelope with your name and locked up in the TI's office. You'll get this back the last night of basic (great night too).

Pack as little as possible. You're going to get a LOT of clothes issued to you and it all goes with you when you leave basic. Carrying 2 large bags is a lot easier than trying to keep up with 3-5 bags.

You are issued an advance in your pay and given a debit card with the advance loaded on it within the first week. This is your money while at basic for runs to the store. Do take some extra cash too for the vending machines, should you be lucky to get use them. Phone cards are a must too, be sure to have several hundred minutes worth of them, other people will bum these from you. You will be required to carry a "money list" with you at all times too. It will have the denominations and serial number of every piece of money you have. One dollar bills are nice for the vending machines, but a pain for you have to keep track of them all.

You will get a trip to the stores on base to purchase personal supplies, just take enough to get you through the first few days.

Wear tennis shoes to basic. There was a handful of clowns that showed up in cowboy boots or work boots.

It's up to your TI so this part will vary. We had to purchase new running shoes and shower shoes at basic so that we were all the same. Granted there are different brands of shoes depending on the scan of your foot. The shower shoes at the base store are garbage and the bottoms will turn to Vaseline when wet. You will bust your ass at a minimum of 4 times rushing to and from the showers. Other TI's did not care and would let you keep your own flip flops and running shoes.

Do NOT volunteer for anything. They will trick you into it, however so be ready to get a crumby detail assigned to you. The best detail to get if you can some how work your way into it is Pad Crew. You simply sweep the pad under the dorms. Our Pad Crew flew under the radar the whole time. You're simply not in the dorm during details and the TI never notices you.

Be in shape before you go. PT consists of running one day and pushups/situps/and other various exercises the next day. The runs last from 30-45 minutes, don't walk either during these runs.

You will be threatened to be recycled ALL the time. It's very rare that you will be recycled, but it can happen. You have to F up big time however.

You will get sick while in basic. There's an abundance of germs and you will get the common cold at least once. Just man up and go to sick call to get the over the counter medicines they give you, they help.

Church is optional, it's fun to get away from the dorms a bit on Sundays. Again, this will vary with your TI, but some TI's do not care if you sleep on Sunday or goof off in the dorms, nothing excessive of course.

You are going to get yelled at, a lot. It doesn't matter if you've been through basic 3 times already. Your TI will find something or make something up to yell at you. Man up, don't roll your eyes and just take it. It's nothing personal, they're just doing their job.

BEAST week is fun. The TI's are not around and the instructors there are "normal". That being said, you can still get jacked up while there.

I'm sure I'll think of some other stuff too. Feel free to ask any questions, I'll try my best to answer them.

Last edited by Mwildt; 01-29-2011 at 18:10..
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Old 03-08-2011, 16:59   #12
GeorgiaGlocker
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I went to basic at Lackland in 1975. The first thing we were told was there are two things that you NEVER do in front of your TI.........laugh and cry.
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Old 03-08-2011, 20:13   #13
Ralff
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So OP, how's San Angelo treating ya?
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Old 03-09-2011, 12:34   #14
md2lgyk
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We went to Lackland a couple of years ago to see our oldest grandson graduate from Basic. Compared to what I went through in Navy boot camp in the 1960s, Air Force Basic is a summer camp.
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:24   #15
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Quote:
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We went to Lackland a couple of years ago to see our oldest grandson graduate from Basic. Compared to what I went through in Navy boot camp in the 1960s, Air Force Basic is a summer camp.
That's some helpful tips right there.
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Old 03-10-2011, 15:47   #16
Mwildt
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That's some helpful tips right there.

He's Navy, apparently he wasn't much of a swimmer going into basic so he had to do some extra laps in the pool.


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