Friday, November 16, 2012

Ready To Go Again

Just finished up stowing and securing our equipment on the launch platform for transit.

They're leaving Saturday morning, and we'll be leaving on Wednesday morning.

Saturday I'll go to Costco and stock up on my personal goodies, and Monday I'll start dragging my laptop, camera, and DVD collection in and stow them in my work space.

Really sucks to be away from home on Thanksgiving, but then I keep reminding myself I'm lucky to have a relatively high paying job AT ALL, and I only have this launch, and one more, before I can retire.

If they'd like me to come back *as a contractor* to support future launches, I'll consider it, but it would take $750 per day to get me to go to sea again.

I use that dollar amount because I know that's what they're already paying some of the other contractors, and they're aren't too many people around who can do this type of work. Plus, since I live locally, they won't have to pay air fair to get me here, or provide hotel accommodations and a per diem for me while waiting to leave.


  1. Fair winds and following seas, sir.

  2. You're too cheap... $1000/day at least... Considering the number of hours, etc.

  3. I'm unsure if they'd pay it.
    One of the contractors who does the satcomm stuff tried for $1k/day, and they told him they'd get somebody else. He countered with $750, and they said OK. He came out on his first launch for $500/day, and we all told him he was nuts!
    Our satcomm system is pretty standard stuff, and I'm sure they could easily find other people with maritime satcomm experience on SeaTel equipment.
    Now whether *I* have enough leverage to be able to pull it off *might* be a different matter. I'm pretty much the only person who knows the tracking system, _and_ can keep it running.
    Likewise with the over-the-water UHF radio gear we use so the customer can monitor and command their satellite.
    The only other people who can do it still work for Boeing, who charges $400 per hour for them to come out.
    We'll just see what happens after the launch after this one.

  4. You lucky booger you...wish I could retire. But, still too young...well, in my mind at least. I'm happy for you...and hey, grab that contractors job. After all, you're young too.

  5. Well, it would be an early retirement at age 62. After I was laid off in 2009 I was doing a lot of two-way radio work, and was just about at the break even point when the newly reorganized company (they went through Chapter 11) called me back, along with about half the other people who had worked there. I talked it over with my wife, and she thought it would be better if I went back, although she didn't understand what a grind it is.
    It's NOT your typical "9-to-5" job!
    They haven't really lived up to what they told us they were going to do when they called us back, but since it wasn't in writing, and they wouldn't give it to us in writing, we trusted them to live up to what they had told us.
    They didn't, and ALL the people who came back are very upset about it. Some of them left Boeing to come back, and they're the ones who are *really* upset about our being misled about what the rate of pay would be while we're at-sea. They damn near had a mutiny after they announced it the day AFTER the vessels had left on the first launch of the new company. They had to have done this deliberately, as if they announced the rate was going to be less than HALF of what we were "promised", and did it before departure, some people would have walked, and they would have been screwed to get the launch off.
    My wife and I went over the numbers, and with what I can bring in doing side jobs, along with the pensions from two previous employers and SS, we *should* be quite comfortable, about at the 90% level of what we earn now.
    And if they call me back to do contractor work, that would just be extra to bank.
    Or probably buy silver and gold with!

    1. I like the gold and silver idea. I'll be sixty-two next're an old fart.


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