Oiler or AB engine

What classes do I need in order to be a oiler? Is ab engine and oiler the same thing? And is rfpew included?

You need to do some more research for you chosen path. Maritime Institute, MPT, San Jacinto might have classes that would interest you if you aren’t already working on a boat. Entry level to QMED is Wiper.

180 days of seatime to be able to test for QMED-Oiler. https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/NMC/pdfs/checklists/mcp_fm_nmc5_55_web.pdf?

Able Seafarer- Engine and Oiler (QMED-Oiler) are NOT the same thing. Able Seafarer-Engine is the STCW rating and needs the requirements on this checklist https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/NMC/pdfs/checklists/mcp_fm_nmc5_221_web.pdf?

RFPEW is a batch of Assessments that need to be signed off by a Licensed Engineer. RFPEW is something you need to either have satisfied in a class or signed off on a ship you’re working on by a licensed engineer. https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/NMC/pdfs/checklists/mcp_fm_nmc5_222_web.pdf?

Get knowledgable with the checklists because they will be what you need to satisfy for the USCG to allow you to upgrade.


There are no courses required for any national endorsement as QMED, including oiler. You MAY take a course to substitute for taking the Coast Guard exam, but you don’t have to.

For the STCW endorsement of Able Seafarer-Engine (AS-E), you first need to qualify for an STCW endorsement as “Rating Forming Part of an Engineering Watch” (RFPEW) you can only start counting sea time for AS-E after you qualify for RFPEW.

For RFPEW, you need to have current STCW Basic Training, if you don’t already have this courses are required. You also need to be signed off on a number of practical; demonstrations. These can be done on the ships you work on. See NVIC 07-14.

After you qualify for RFPEW, you can start counting sea time for AS-E. You need to hold a national endorsement as QMED (or be approved for it on the same application). You will need to be signed off on more practical demonstrations, see NVIC 18-14.

Depending on where you will work, you may not need an STCW endorsement.