flapsdown40
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2016 11:41 am

Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Tue Jan 21, 2020 12:24 pm

The subject title says it all. I was just wondering if a Lt. Col flies AIR FORCE TWO in the left seat as the commander of the aircraft.

I know that a full Colonel always sits in the left seat of AIR FORCE ONE, which made me wonder if a Lt. Col is assigned the left seat on AF2.

This begs 3 questions in my mind:

1) What rank usually (or always) sits in the right seat of AF1 and AF2, respectively,
2) Do the pilots on both AF1 and AF2 "swap legs" (flight segments) as civilian captains and first officers do?
For example, say that POTUS flies to 3 different states to make campaign speeches in each state. Does the Colonel and the "first officer" take turns flying AF1?
3) What rank is the pilot (left seat) that flies the backup 747 wherever AF1 goes? Colonel? Lt. Col? Maybe even a "senior" Major who is being considered for a promotion to Lt Col?

Thank you in advance for any responses to my questions.
I'm already insane but I'm not crazy!
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 4639
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Tue Jan 21, 2020 12:55 pm

It’s not necessarily a full colonel flying either plane regardless of who’s on board. I have known several Lt Cols that flew both Clinton and Bush 43. It’s a rather small group of pilots and they fly both planes, depending on schedules.

GF
 
timh4000
Posts: 321
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Thu Jan 23, 2020 3:56 pm

When you say both planes do you mean both 747's or the 757 that is primarily used for the v-president and on occasion the president
 
strfyr51
Posts: 4261
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:04 pm

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Tue Jan 28, 2020 11:32 am

ti mh4000 wrote:
When you say both planes do you mean both 747's or the 757 that is primarily used for the v-president and on occasion the president

the VC-32's, They may fly the First Family in a pinch but I believe the VC-25 is their airplane you can bet though the Pilots who fly them are as well qualified as any commercial Airline Captain
 
strfyr51
Posts: 4261
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:04 pm

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:44 am

flapsdown40 wrote:
The subject title says it all. I was just wondering if a Lt. Col flies AIR FORCE TWO in the left seat as the commander of the aircraft.

I know that a full Colonel always sits in the left seat of AIR FORCE ONE, which made me wonder if a Lt. Col is assigned the left seat on AF2.

This begs 3 questions in my mind:

1) What rank usually (or always) sits in the right seat of AF1 and AF2, respectively,
2) Do the pilots on both AF1 and AF2 "swap legs" (flight segments) as civilian captains and first officers do?
For example, say that POTUS flies to 3 different states to make campaign speeches in each state. Does the Colonel and the "first officer" take turns flying AF1?
3) What Col is arank is the pilot (left seat) that flies the backup 747 wherever AF1 goes? Colonel? Lt. Col? Maybe even a "senior" Major who is being considered for a promotion to Lt Col?

Thank you in advance for any responses to my questions.

a Lt. Col is a Navy Commander. In the Navy a Commander commands an entire Squadron. Many of them have 12K-20K hrs. flying time in the squadrons I flew with. The CO or XO always had another LCDR,(Major) working on his crew that flew primarily as a Plane commander with his crew as they usually had other duties. I did fly with the XO in my squadron but he was a tactical officer and not a pilot so the Aircraft commander Deferred to him as he was the Mission Commander. And Man? He was good!
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 4639
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:28 pm

I’d be amazed at an AD Navy pilot with 12,000 hours, even in P-3s
 
Lrockeagle
Posts: 150
Joined: Wed Oct 06, 2004 1:40 am

Re: Does a Lt. Col fly AIR FORCE TWO as the commander?

Wed Feb 05, 2020 4:02 am

GalaxyFlyer wrote:
I’d be amazed at an AD Navy pilot with 12,000 hours, even in P-3s

Yeah 10k hours is a big achievement for the C130 drivers at my local AFB. Most military pilots I’ve known were lucky to get 200 hours a year.
Lrockeagle
14 years ago

I got $20 says AA takes their 787's with GE powerplants. Just a hunch. Any takers?

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