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Aircraft Technician on C160 Transall

Thursday 24 April - 11:24h  |  News & Press updates

Staff Sergeant Tobias Bukowski is a commissioned officer who works as an aircraft technician in the Bavarian Penzing. He actually is in charge of the maintenance of the well-known transport aircraft C-160 "Transall ".

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Tobias Bukowski is especially stressed during the periodic inspections of the aircrafts. These take place every three years.  “It usually takes 42 working days," says the metal worker  "During the inspection, the wings , the lateral and vertical tail, the cockpit, the cargo area, basically the entire aircraft has to be checked very carefully. We dismantle for example parts of the wings and check for wear or oil leaks and replace defective or worn parts. At the same time, other specialists check the instruments or the hydraulic or electric system. Moreover, we have metal worker or painter in the inspection team" explains Bukowski .

"The job is technically quite demanding and the aircraft technicians carry a great responsibility. The crews of the aircraft must trust us. That's why we have to work carefully and accurately."

Bukowski brings it to the point: "An aircraft cannot, once it is in the air, simply stop during the flight if something does not work."


Additionally to the actual job, Bukowski has to keep his basic military skills up to date. Each year, the staff sergeant has to complete first aid training and shooting practice. "But that is always funny," he says.

By the way:  Although the aircrafts he works on come from the Air Transport Wing (LTG ) 61 , the technician are managed by the system center for Aircraft Engineering in Erding .


Already in high-school Tobias Bukowski knew, that his profession should be a technical one and should have to touch preferably aircrafts. Already at that time, he had a preference for the Bundeswehr.  The staff sergeant recalls his first contacts with the Bundeswehr: “Some of my friends have been soldier and of course they always told a lot of stories about the Bundeswehr. Later, at the technical school, we have had a visit of a military service consultant who presented some job descriptions and some opportunities to us”


Thanks to his qualification as metal worker, he could start his career with a higher rank – and thus with a higher starting salary. Nevertheless, his service began, as it is the case for all recruits, with the general basic training.

After that, he had some additional military and professional training, such as the non-commissioned officer training course for general aircraft mechanic and specific C-160 Transall.



Bukowski would like to extend his initial contract of eight years. He explains that he already requested to change to the sergeant major career. “If this request will be accepted, my service period will be extended to twelve years and I can also get further qualifications. I would then work on Euro fighters. As sergeant major I would also have the prerequisites to apply to a professional soldier career. As staff sergeant this is not possible”.


But before this, Bukowski has to get other qualifications: during the summer, he will follow the training course for sports trainers at the Bundeswehr Sports School in Warendorf.


His career:

1st – 2nd Month Basic skills Training
3rd Month First contact with future unit
4th – 5th Month Staff Sergeant Training (general military part)
6th – 24th Month Work as aircraft mechanic under training
3rd Year  Specific aircraft mechanic training (3 months)
  3 months specific C-160 aircraft mechanic training
  Training concerning the self-defense devices of the C-160
Until today Work as aircraft technician.




Find the original text in german language here.



Words:  Steffen Maluche

Pictures: Steffen Maluche / EATC

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