From: Lawrence, KS
To the Gorn Commander: You may be aware of this already, but JNAF single-engine floatplane units are capable of performing sweep and escort missions. I have been using some of these units back in Japan to train up potential fighter pilots, setting them to train in sweep and/or escort mode, which gets their Air combat, Def, and general experience ratings up into the deploy-able range. When sent back to the General Reserve pool these pilots still show up as "patrol reserve," but you can assign them to fighter units.
Doing this does reduce my search/ASW capabilities, but it has helped keep my fighter pilot reserves at a decent level beyond what the JNAF would normally have.
I do not consider this gamey because there is a cost: I am now low on JNAF pilots who can search, perform ASW, and recon, which are all valued skills. Also, I only do this with Pete units, which historically did serve as fighters occasionally, having better performance than other floatplanes.
Fear God and Dread Nought