Airline Pilot to Plumber

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by austin757, Mar 3, 2021.

  1. Oldmanb777

    Oldmanb777 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Its very good time to be in the trades. More work than the tradesmen/ and women can handle. It's not rocket science, but you need to be efficient. I have done trades work during my furloughs. great back up career. AND!!!! let me repeat that......AND if you are in aviation, you NEED a back up career! Just like aviation, the trades are cyclical. But again its a great time to be in the trades. Too much work and not enough tradesmen. So price whatever you want. Want Wide body Capt pay to pull romex or sweat pipes, and you'll get it if you do a good job and reliable, let the owner know when you will be there and be there when you say you will, or call them and let them know what to expect. I recently finished a flip. The drywall guys I used for the stuff I couldn't do offered to compare W-2's for the job price. I would have lost. The electrician I sometimes use is really good. I use him when I can't do it myself. He only will bid by the job. He likes to talk and wastes some time in that way. However as I calculate what he does when he is done. It's well over $200/hr. And he has more work than he can do. So back up for your flying............I highly recommend it. I highly recommend having a second saleable skill. It has kept us from being homeless a couple times in this industry. But remember the grass isn't greener on the other side of the fence.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  2. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot En-Route

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    That just tells me you know what’s in the book. Quit studying so much and **** will be way more surprising.
     
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  3. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    I understand. But it’s still more challenging than plumbing.
     
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  4. Busflyer

    Busflyer Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I’ll stick to flying as opposed to crawling under houses. That being said, I appreciate those that do that work and they certainly earn what they make.
     
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  5. kayoh190

    kayoh190 Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    Agreed, but I'm not an airline pilot because I want to be challenged at work. It's because it gives me close to three weeks of every month that I don't even have to think about the job. That's plenty of time to do any number of things that'll scratch my intellectual itch!
     
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  6. Greg Bockelman

    Greg Bockelman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    It’s nice to be senior, isn’t it.

    How long did it take you to get there?
     
  7. kayoh190

    kayoh190 Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    11.7 days per month is the average over the entire time at my current job (8th year) - and yes, I'm including the days available for reserve, not just the ones I've been called in for work. ;)

    The trick for me is living in base the entire time, and luckily I've been living in junior cities. With all the movement we've seen in the last 8 years or so, nobody has been junior for long unless they choose to blow up their seniority to chase pay or equipment. Obviously COVID changed everything, but it's been a pretty solid ride while I've been here.
     
  8. jsstevens

    jsstevens Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Just remember when pilots say they were up to their neck in sh*t it's a metaphor. For a plumber, maybe not...
     
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  9. Crashnburn

    Crashnburn Line Up and Wait

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    Auto mechanic. Better pay than A&P and less responsibility. Probably need to go to a trade school unless you’re already a gear head. Could probably work something out with a small garage to work on your schedule, if you’re really good. Or independent software developer. Depending on the app, you could work on it on your laptop between legs. Wouldn’t chance doing anything on company time. Don’t need a degree, etc. but need to know your way around software development.
     
  10. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator Final Approach

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    Pretty good plumbing joke.
     
  11. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    I've been thinking about it. I suppose the grass is always greener on the plumbing side.
     
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  12. kayoh190

    kayoh190 Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    If I weren't such a lazy bum, this is how I'd play it. Any job that requires nothing more than a laptop and internet connection can be done during down time on the road. Doesn't work if the goal is a trade and you're looking to get your hands dirty, but lots of guys do pretty well with a side hustle that can be done during TAFB (time away from base).
     
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  13. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Administrator Management Council Member

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    I thought I could maintain my code-writing during the daily 6-hour layover between cargo runs. The amount of focus and concentration needed to write good code exceeded my brain's ability to maintain it after getting up at 4am to horse a Be99 around for a few hours. It might have gotten better over time, but I didn't find out. :D

    I suspect better schedules, particularly those with multi-day downtime would work splendidly alongside some sort of software-writing hustle or other nerd contract.
     
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  14. Dana

    Dana Pattern Altitude

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    No, just over the septic tank.
     
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  15. kayoh190

    kayoh190 Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    Wait, good code? Yeah, I wouldn't know anything about that. :p
     
  16. NoHeat

    NoHeat En-Route

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    I met a pilot at a regional airline who did construction when he wasn't flying. He had a partner for a little home-construction business. That worked okay until the construction jobs grew, and then he had to decide which to give up. It was a good time for housing construction in his small city, so he quit up the airline job. That all turned out very well for him.

    Plumbing is of course part of construction, so that's why I'm mentioning this story.
     
  17. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator Final Approach

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    I'd try something more like house flipping for an occupation. House can sit while you work, then it's ready to be worked on when you're back in town. No deadlines to speak of and you are the customer, so you work as you please and only you get to question the quality of your work (and the home inspector). Takes more up front capital, but may be a better option. Plenty of people are able to make a living out of it, but if nothing else it's okay side income if you stay on the right side of the housing market.
     
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  18. gkainz

    gkainz Final Approach

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    not the whole plumbing side, just over the septic tank and drain field...

    edit - I see above that I'm a day late and a dollar short ...
     
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  19. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Not making a suggestion, just throwing this out there....

    There was a pilot in Alaska that had his own internet porno site. He was making serious side job money, that is more money than his flying job.

    He just bought pictures from other sites and put them up on his site.

    (it was not me....)
     
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  20. RyanB

    RyanB Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    I definitely think it’s a good side hustle if nothing more, but with today’s housing market, buying something for the right price, throwing several thousand into it and then trying to flip it for a decent profit is more of a challenge.
     
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  21. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator Final Approach

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    Agreed. It's tough depending on the area of the country and the housing market conditions. You also have to compete against companies/investor groups who have the capital to buy up lots of decent candidates at auctions/sheriff sales that most individuals wouldn't be able to make much money on. Economies of scale and all that. However, it can be worthwhile to do as a side-job or even work as a contractor/handyman for people who do house flipping.
     
  22. austin757

    austin757 Pre-Flight

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    I already have a rental property. Might get getting another soon, but will probably end up selling this house. I like investing for the long term, but I’m thinking more career oriented when it comes to the trades.
     
  23. texasclouds

    texasclouds Cleared for Takeoff

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    A master plumber once told me all you need to know is that crap rolls down hill, wash your hands before you eat, and payday is Friday.
     
  24. austin757

    austin757 Pre-Flight

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    One told me to chew on your fingernails after every job too
     
  25. Tools

    Tools Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Took me two weeks to prep, take and pass residential, commercial and industrial general contractor, and electrician in TN. Was tempted to do plumbing and HVAC as well, so yes, unless NH is just weirdly different than TN (which is possible, I don’t really know) it’s possible. Getting legal isn’t that hard, knowing the trade well enough to be efficient enough to make decent money, that’s where the actual skill is required.
     
  26. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I’ve always figured on going back to being a mechanic (and having my own shop) if it came down to it. Now that we’ve got the shop built, it would be a “work from home” job even.
     
  27. Geosync

    Geosync Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Licensed trade is always a good back up, of course it’s not not for everyone. A&P training is good and not necessarily for aviation. I worked in the space manufacturing industry with an a&p and machining experience for a while and could go back to it if I needed to. Of course it’s all about experience but if I could do it over again I’d do 2 years at a juco, get a trade, knock out my primary undergrad classes and then transfer to a 4 year. Work part time in said trade as an upper classman for experience then go to flight school.
     
  28. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    My rental property is an old pier and beam house, elevated about 30" and skinned with corrugated siding. The water piping is run underneath the house, the insulation is just 1/2" Armaflex.

    Before the freeze really took hold, when the power failed my renters went to mom's house. I immediately drove over, shut off the water, and opened all of the faucets. The house is on a hill, and I was hoping a loss of pressure somewhere in the area would allow the piping to drain. After four days below freezing, I was sure the pipes had frozen. Nope, all was good.

    I guess most people around here didn't have a clue how to shut off their water. There are piles of carpet and drywall in front of hundreds of homes in my area.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2021
  29. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    Getting a business license is different than having a trade license.

    I have a Texas electrician's license I've kept current for twenty years. In this state, to get a journeyman license, an applicant must have 4,000 hours of verifiable employment in the trade. Masters licenses require 6,000 hours. Plumbing licenses have similar requirements.

    The requirements for the trade business licenses aren't much, but you can't be in business unless there is an employee with a master's license.
     
  30. lsaway

    lsaway Pre-takeoff checklist

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    In the foreclosed property preservation business, after the water is turned off, a fitting is installed onto a hose bib to use compressed air to blow out all the water in the pipes. In the big Houston freeze, my brother turned off his water and opened up the faucets to drain water in his house. I blew out the pipes with air in my house. He is now repairing over $20k in damage from frozen pipes and is still without water. All I had to do was turn on my water.
     
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  31. TCABM

    TCABM Pattern Altitude

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    In CO, that’s how we winterized our sprinkler system every year.