Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Wednesday, September 08, 2010


Sorry for the light posting; I've been celebrating my 25th wedding anniversary this week.

The new Selective Re-enlistment Bonus message came out today as NAVADMIN 300-10. I'm not patient enough to see if any of the submarine rates had their levels go down since the last message came out, but it looks like Submariners, especially the Nucs, are continuing to do well. (A summary of the changes overall between the two messages is as follows: 26 skills have been removed, 34 multiples have decreased, 101 skills (~63%) remain unchanged. It looks like the Navy is cutting back on SRB payments.) With more senior nuclear-trained enlisted personnel being eligible for up to $100,000 through the Enlisted Supervisor Retention Pay program (ESRP), and more junior Sailors in Zone A getting up to $75K and Zone B getting up to $90K, it looks like there's some good re-enlisting money to be had for Submariners. (Through the ESRP, there are even some SRBs available to those in Zone D, 16-20 years.)

The big thing on my boat was always re-enlisting in the war zone, where the whole bonus was tax free. I'm assuming that's still the case, and I hope some of the Submariners on USS Norfolk (SSN 714), who just returned from deployment, were able to take advantage of that.

What's your best story about re-enlisting?


Blogger Old Salt said...

In Guam, HC-5 will do a PAO trip for re-enlistments. I went up with my LT, and Master Chief for a chopper ride around the island, and re-enlisted over the Frank Cable while it was in drydock.

9/08/2010 2:17 PM

Blogger montigrande said...

My second, on the boat reenlistment was scheduled for the awards ceremony on the pier on a Friday. Due to some paperwork snafu on the tender, the check was not there and I politely informed the XO that I would not be executing the oath without it. He tried to convince me to “trust him” and I declined. My wife was a little concerned when I got home but being a true submarine wife she knew things would be fine. The next morning, while I was on duty as the SRO, the Duty Officer informed me that the XO had my check and that the CO was planning on being onboard in a few minutes. I contacted the SEO who was also qualified SRO, we conducted mutual watch turnover and on my way to “tour the topside shorepower cables,” I stopped in the wardroom. I reenlisted, took a smoke break and never even missed a set of logs…..

9/08/2010 2:59 PM

Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

On SEADRAGON during the Vietnam Conflict, fifteen sailors reenlisted for over a combined total of $115,000 of reenlistement bonus tax free, the average was $15,000 in 1968 dollars for each sailor. The boat also came back from that deployment flying both the gold dolphin and the silver dolphin flags for 100% qualified in submarines.

9/08/2010 3:29 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations to both of you on your 25th!

In today's world your bond is indicative of uncommon preparation and commitment.

Obviously, many of us regret your shortened career in service to our country for the very same reasons.


9/08/2010 7:16 PM

Blogger Ret ANAV said...

Congratulations on 25!

July, 1998....CO and I (and others) 12,500 feet over Keana Pt. in a Beech King Air approaching the drop zone. Over the drop zone reciting the Oath of Enlistment as the groups ahead of me are exiting. Last Tandem pair leaves as I say "I DO"...cameraman climbs out and we exit together. Little bit of sit-flying, little bit if head-down, little bit of tracking...pull at 3000 feet, swoop the cones, wait for the plane to land. Plane lands, CO walks over and I sign the paperwork. Only problem is...I lost the pen (and my goggles!!) in freefall...with the video to prove it! Had to borrow the skipper's pen! My favorite part of that re-enlistment? Seeing the look on the skipper's face when I told him he had to wear a parachute rig himself (FAA reg for flying in a plane with the door open)! Some facial expressions cannot be replicated!
Chap, methinks you've seen the video, yes?

9/08/2010 8:08 PM

Blogger Steve Harkonnen said...

My final reenlistment took place on a bluenose flight from Iceland on a P-3 Orion. Told my wife I'd be back for lunch; we came back 18 hours later. Got to cross the arctic circle, do all sorts of stunts that nearly scared the living daylights out of me, and even helped during the hot pursuit of a very real Yankee class sub....then a second signature of a Los Angeles sub closing in on the Yankee boat....they were all over them like white on rice. I envy submariners, you guys got all the excitement and if I could do it over I'd be on a sub.

9/08/2010 9:25 PM

Blogger DDM said...


Congrats on your anniversary! We celebrated our 25th last year. It was the first one not in the navy.

A touchy subject is guys who go into the war zone solely to re-enlist. Maybe it's because I never got to do it, but I always felt like it was a slap in the face to the guys actually in the war zone. Flew with a PMT guy to Bahrain. We were doing a mid deployment record review (at the request of the boat) so this guy flies with us to Bahrain under the guise of collecting Reverse Osmosis data. He gets the boat CO to re-enlist him. He gets so shitty that night that me and another squadron guy have to carry him back to his hotel. He doesn't show up the next day to catch the shuttle to the boat and we end up gathering the R.O. unit data. On the day we left, we got delayed at the Bahrain Airport lounge with the Welsh national rugby team. Our PMT friend calls them English which resulted in us buying several rounds to prevent an International incident :).

9/09/2010 6:15 AM

Blogger reddog said...

How many times have you sat with some guy, 25, maybe 27 years old, on the day he would have gotten out of the Navy, if he hadn't extended and finally re-upped, now looking at another 6 full years?

He always thought he'd be going off to Carnegie, Cal Tech, Case Western on that day or maybe even back to the family farm, instead of back to the boat, base housing, a washer/dryer that isn't paid for, a wife and maybe a couple kids.

Navy money, broken dreams.

9/09/2010 8:24 AM

Anonymous Dean Kling said...

My sister and I enlisted together back in 1968. In boot camp I signed an extension for 2 years to get ET-A school as a Communication Tech (M Branch). Fast forward a couple of years when I was TAD to the USS Bonefish on a Westpac. I was at 3 years and 1 month in and we had just stopped by the war zone during the transit from Hong Kong to Subic. The XO collared me a couple of weeks later and laid out a deal for me. Since I was within a year of completion of my enlistment (barely) I was eligible to reenlist (extension wasn't yet executed, what I had signed was an *agreement* to extend). I could reenlist for 4 years (canceling the extension), extending my commitment by 13 months, and get $7600 (multiple by 8-10X for today's dollars) tax free, as long as I enlisted before the end of the month. I jumped at the deal.
When I got back to Pearl (and bought my car - brand new VW Bug for $1300) I found out my sister has also reenlisted and as an Air Traffic Controller also rated the top bonus. However she reenlisted for six years to get the full $10,000, but had to pay taxes and wound up getting about the same amount of cash as I did. To say that she was pissed was an understatement.
I discovered it was better to be lucky than to be smart.

9/09/2010 10:47 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

While in the Shipyard had a guy reenlist atop a huge crane, this guy was just a little nuts. Oh well. XO asxed him where he wanted to do the ceremony and the shipyard made it happen.

9/09/2010 12:50 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of our TM's found out the CO was a bit claustrophobic, so he made him climb into a torpedo tube to do the honors...

9/09/2010 1:08 PM

Blogger a_former_elt_2jv said...

Reenlisting for a nuke is a bad idea. Even at $100K, the salary differences can be made up in less than 18 months on the outside, but then the pay stays much higher.

The benefits arguments for staying in are also bunk. So are the housing and vacation arguments.

9/09/2010 2:09 PM

Blogger Atomic Dad said...

I reenlisted at Safeco Field. Was a great time with the CNO as a reenlisting officer. Turns out is was also a military appreciation game and I ended up with box seats and we even got a S-3 Viking flyover as we reenlisted in front of home plate.

The Moose even came up to the box to say hello.

My first reenlistment was on the boat, and nothing I think the second made up for it.


9/09/2010 4:50 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bonuses are not what they used to be.

I re-uped in 63 as a nuc chief and received a re-up bonus of 15 dollars and change, as I was capped out on the $2,000 life time bonus limit. Times change.

9/09/2010 5:27 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

{Reenlisting for a nuke is a bad idea. Even at $100K, the salary differences can be made up in less than 18 months on the outside, but then the pay stays much higher.}

Re-enlisting for the money is truly stupid. If you love it, re-enlist and maximize your bonus. If you don't like it, don't do it. There are lots of jobs on the outside that are lucrative.

I've always been skeptical of the efficacy of bonuses, for enlistment or re-enlistment. Who the heck signs away 6 years of their life for a paltry enlistment bonus?

9/09/2010 5:44 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lifetime max for nuc enlisted is 200k now. Not sure about O-gang.

9/09/2010 5:45 PM

Anonymous Ross Kline said...

Congrats, Joel! I get to celebrate my 25th this was the only day the command would see fit to give me the day off...

9/10/2010 5:19 PM

Anonymous Confused Ex-Nuke said...

I offered to re-enlist in the RC at test depth. I still don't understand why it didn't happen...

9/10/2010 5:20 PM

Blogger SJV said...

Just after field day in the battery well I told the CO I'd reenlist if he could get the CNO (who was due to visit the next week) in the well to administer the oath. I would have been screwed if he'd have said yes, but I was pretty sure I was safe. Not sure if the CO even asked the CNO, but he didn't approach me to schedule it.

Glad to hear nuke bonuses have gone up.

9/10/2010 7:42 PM

Anonymous NHSparky said...

Anon @ 9/9 5:45--"Lifetime max for nuc enlisted is 200k now. Not sure about O-gang."

Still a bargain for the Navy, not so much for the re-enlistee at roughly $14K a year after the 6-year point. I think my difference between last year in the Nav and first year in Civlant was about triple that (and that was 1999-2000.) Even assuming I made E-8 before retirement, I've more than made up the $200K plus whatever retirement, and then some.

9/11/2010 8:32 AM

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