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Have Spanner, Will Travel

Photo Caption: Air Force corporal, Paul Robinson stands in front his current workshop, the RNZAF Boeing 757.

Air Force corporal, Paul Robinson stands in front his current workshop, the RNZAF Boeing 757.

Being paid to travel the world doing what you love is all part of the job for former Cambrigde St Peters School student, Corporal (CPL) Paul Robinson.

CPL Robinson joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) as an Aircraft Technician in 2003 because of his love of aviation.

"I knew the training was world class and with a brother, both grandfathers and a great grandfather having served in the military, I wanted to give it a go," said CPL Robinson.

As an aircraft technician, CPL Robinson deploys overseas on routine flights to places where the NZ Defence Force is deployed on peacekeeping, disaster relief or military operations, to service and repair the aircraft.

"I enjoy the challenge of maintaining aircraft in ever-changing environments and locations, while working with great people," said CPL Robinson.

He has deployed previously to the Solomon Islands, Rarotonga, Samoa, Dubai and Canada but CPL Robinson says his best experience so far has been an exchange program to Antarctica.

"I was lucky enough to deploy to the ice for three weeks over Christmas last year, to work with the New York Air National Guard down there.

"We were working on their C130 Hercules which are fitted with skis and that was an awesome learning experience," said CPL Robinson.

One of the hardest parts of his job is handing over a task with a problem unsolved.

"It’s difficult when you’re in the middle of a job but run out of time to finish it between shifts. I don’t like leaving when a job is only half done.

"It’s hard work, but when you’re sitting in the flight deck of a C130 Hercules while it is flying below ridge lines and just above treetops during tactical exercises, it makes the sometimes long hours of maintenance worth while," said CPL Robinson.

To anyone thinking of joining the Air Force, CPL Robinson says, "If you are looking for a career where you will be challenged, do a variety of jobs, learn valuable skills for your future and make great mates, then the Air Force is the place for you."


For more information, contact Todd O’Hara, Defence Communications Group on 021 626 578.

For more information on Aircraft Technician trades, visit

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