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Old 22nd Oct 2003, 22:36   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Milton Keynes
Posts: 4
RAF height requirements

i'm going to OASC in december and am crapping my pants that i might be to tall for pilot. i went to cranwell for a sixth form scholarship application and my dimensions were fine then, but i'm worried i might have grown a little. does anyone know what the height limit is - assuming all other measurements are within limits? i'm 6"3....
walleye is offline  
Old 22nd Oct 2003, 22:57   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: London
Posts: 3
Height only really matters for FJ, i think the upper limit is about 6ft 3 for that, but doesnt really matter for multi's or helo's. So you may be in luck!

Here are the key measurement boundaries for Pilots :
Functional Reach (Lenth of Arms with Fist Clenched) 720mm - 900mm
Sitting Height: 865-990mm
Buttock to Knee: 560-660mm
Buttock to Heel: 1000-1200mm

You should be fine unless you've got some freakishly over proportioned limbs. Try not to worry about the medical side of things, its out of your control, there are far more important things at OASC to worry about!!

All the best with it though mate, try to keep smiling and be yourself!
rockmav is offline  
Old 22nd Oct 2003, 23:04   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 806
Unless things have changed I thought we only recruited those who were able to fly all aircraft ? If that's still the case then being too big for an F3 means that you won't be accepted for pilot full stop.

6"3 is big but am sure others that are in are a similar height.

Plus it's the old hip to knee distance that gets most.

The advice is correct though, medical is out of your hands.
FFP is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2003, 03:11   #4 (permalink)
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 78
I can think of several 'stretched' aviators over the years including a 6'6'' Nav on the Buccaneer (made the standard Bucc dwarfs in the 165 club look rather short), a 4'30'' Nimrod, and subsequently Rotary, Pilot. I am a 6'3'' streak of p*ss and no-one has ever suggested that I am too big to fit in the cockpit of any FJ or multi.

BATS is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2003, 03:56   #5 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: UK
Posts: 106
If all your constituent components were at the upper edge of the bracket you'd be 6'4". There's no height limit as such as far as I know.

Good luck.
Feck is offline  
Old 25th Oct 2003, 04:30   #6 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: UK
Posts: 203
Ha! Clearly anyone under 6' 4" is genetically inferior! (Well, at the very least those under 6')...

I am just under 6 ' 5", and I'm a rotary pilot (recruited in late 90s, so not some selection aberration from WWII...). My medical records also state that I fit all aircraft requirements (FJ/multi/rotary). I have been in some FJ cockpits and I'm not too sure about keeping my legs in the event of an ejection, but everything else is fine. I admit to not sitting up as straight as I could have done when I went for selection, but they gave me a cadetship anyway. There were a few raised eyebrows at the final medical prior to graduating from IOT, but just ignoring the docs seemed to do just fine.

Squirrel (Basic Rotary) is tight to fit in to, but the Squirrel course is only 4 months long, so the discomfort only lasts a short period of time. The Griffin (Advanced Rotary) has loads of room (the seats and pedals all adjust). All the frontline helicopters I've been in have loads of room - more than enough for someone as short as you!

Apart from doing as I did, there isn't a lot you can do to pass the medical - either you meet the requirements or you don't. Don't stress. I suggest you brush up on your distance/speed/time calculations, and your answers to all the questions that will come up at interview.

Best of luck with selection.

sarboy w****r is offline  
Old 25th Oct 2003, 05:42   #7 (permalink)
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 531

To re-iterate what has been said above, do not despair! I am 6' 3" also, and I am within the size limits for all RAF aircraft. I think that amongst the ejection seat aircraft, the Canberra is the most critical with a buttock - knee limit of 650 mm (the one exception to the 660 mm quoted by rockmav). However, I doubt if any new first tourists will be sent to the Canberra. Apart from this, the Hawk is probably the tightest squeeze, especially if you have stout legs, as your shins can rub on the bottom of the instrument panel. However, at 6' 3" you should be OK. And I can concur that there is no overall height limit, just limits on individual parts.

One other factor to consider is weight. There is a maximum weight for each type of ejection seat. Fortunately, it is often possible to sort this out if slightly overweight! If you wish to discuss precise numbers on this, send me a personal message and I will find out if there may be any potential problems.
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