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News | July 27, 2020

FRCSW Paraloft Shop Oversees Flight Line Gear

By Jim Markle

VIRIN: 200727-N-XZ252-0070

The flight line pilots of Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) depend upon the knowledge and skills of the command's artisans to ensure that the systems of the aircraft they test are safe and respond in an anticipated manner.

Equally important to the pilots and their crew are the Aircrew Survival Equipmentman Sailors of the paraloft shop in Building 785 who track, inspect, and test the aircrews gear.

As part of managing the aircrews equipment, the shop updates gear inspections to life preservers, water bottles, radios, and medical kits.

Inspection and maintenance of pilot and aircrew vests are kept with a history card of the gear in the vest that includes the ordnance, harness, and pocket knife.

The shop's Sailors also maintain some of the equipment in the aircraft like life rafts, seat pans and parachutes.

Equipment inspections are done in 30, 90, 180, and 360-day intervals, depending on the gear.

The 90-day inspection is an overall gear assessment that covers helmets, harnesses and everything carried in the aircrew pockets.

Pilot flight suits, boots, and gloves are inspected on a 360-day interval.

The shop handles any sewing repairs and modifications to flight suits or vests.

Because the shop is designated at the organizational level (O-level), equipment that is damaged or in need of repair, like radios, life preservers and breathing bottles, are sent to the intermediate level (I-level) for replacement.

Other gear inspected includes the anti-gravity (G) suits exclusive to F/A-18 Hornet pilots. The suits are connected to the aircraft and designed to inflate to compensate for gravity forces to prevent pilot unconsciousness.

G suits are inspected on a 90-day rotation and inflated to test for air leakage and a psi rating that doesn't fall below .5 psi for a 30-second interval.

Also specific to the F/A-18 and tested in the shop is the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS).

The shop's testing equipment connects to the hologram-like informational displays of the JHMCS that project velocity, pitch, weapons system status, and other data onto the pilot's helmet visor.

Sailors assigned to the paraloft shop must also be ordnance qualified because they handle and track the pencil and day and night flares stored in the vests of pilots.

Nov. 21, 2023

FRCSW at Fleet Week San Diego

On November 8 2023, Fleet Week in San Diego unfolded as a grand spectacle of innovation and technology, transforming the Port Pavilion Building into a vibrant hub of the future.

Nov. 10, 2023

Honor Flight San Diego’s Tribute to American Veterans

Veterans Day not only offers a moment to reflect upon the sacrifices of service members, but also serves as a poignant reminder of the price of liberty and the importance of acknowledging those who have borne its cost. This day reinforces the timeless truth: freedom is never free, and gratitude towards its guardians is eternally owed. Building on this spirit of reverence, organizations like Honor Flight San Diego (HFSD) work tirelessly to show tangible appreciation to these heroes.

Sept. 5, 2023

FRCSW STEM in Action

When Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) STEM ambassadors visit local communities, their goal is to utilize the STEM outreach program to inspire and create valuable opportunities to learn for both students and educators. The program also tries to empower both the students and FRCSW employees by fostering meaningful connections between Naval STEM efforts and the upcoming generation.

July 20, 2023

FRCSW Engineer Receives Assistant Secretary of Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition) Dr. Delores M. Etter Top Scientists & Engineers of the Year Award

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May 15, 2023

FRCSW Comptroller Receives Department of the Navy and Secretary of Defense Financial Management Awards

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FRCSW E-2D Team Wins NAVAIR Commander’s Award

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April 18, 2023

FRCSW Sailors Named 2023 Sailor of the Year

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April 6, 2023

FRCSW Ally Support Strengthens Royal Australian Air Force

Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) successfully completed a first of its kind reconfiguration of a U.S. Navy EA-6B Growler for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

March 31, 2023

Fleet Readiness Center Southwest - Eliminating Waste and Improving Efficiency

For over 100 years, Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) has provided the men and women of the Navy and Marine Corps with the highest quality products and services in the most efficient manner possible. One of the state of the art management systems that makes this possible is the “Lean” process which focuses its attention on eliminating waste and error. FRCSW began the command’s most recent “Lean” process by integrating pre-expendable bins (PEB). Lieutenant Commander Jeffrey Legg, Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) Industrial Supply Officer, in collaboration with the other PEB managers, played a pivotal role in the improvement of PEB inventory.

Sept. 26, 2022

FRCSW Navy’s Sole Maintainer of Rotodome Radar

A primary tool of the Hawkeye’s defensive posture is the rotodome radar system, maintained by Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW).