You want to keep well out ahead of the maintenance process for your small engine aircraft. If you have a fleet, it can be a chore to juggle the overhaul schedule for your aircraft. You need to make sure that each aircraft needs MRO at a different time. Otherwise, you are left with a hanger full of grounded planes all being worked on at the same time. Continue reading Importance Of A Rental In The MRO Process To Keep Your Business In The Air & Off The Ground
Small engine aircraft work much differently than larger commercial aircraft. They use different engines, fuel types and safety equipment. You can take your small engine aircraft to any old aircraft maintenance hangar for you overhaul, but you may want to think twice. You may want to take your business’s aircraft to someone who knows the PT6A engine intimately. You may want to take your aircraft to a company that is committed to a passion for small aircraft that started decades ago. Continue reading The Importance Of In Depth Knowledge Of The PT6A For Effective Maintenance, Repair And Overhaul
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Your aircraft is due for an engine overhaul. Whether it is a PT6A engine from Pratt and Whitney, or the R-985 and the R-1340 radial engines, you want the best work done to maintain your aircraft’s resale value. But your main goal during an overhaul should be safety. You want your plane’s engine to be overhauled with OEM approved parts. This is the safest way to perform a full engine overhaul. Continue reading What Are Aircraft Engine OEM Approvals And Why Is This Important In An Overhaul
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Covington Aircraft has now been in business since 1979. Over the last 30 plus years, we have seen some Agricultural Aircraft owners who were riskier than even the most daring stunt pilots. How so? Well, they try, much like those who push the oil change on their vehicle, to put off as long as possible the overhaul of their engine. We focus on what to look for and Time Between Overhaul in this post.
The Ag industry often overlooks FAA Part 91/137 (Agricultural Operations) regarding recommendations for TBO, or Time Between Overhaul. TBO is overhauling an engine at the manufacturers recommended times. Often, Ag industry pilots are under the mistaken impression that PT6A engines don’t need these recommended overhauls, when this couldn’t be further from the truth.
SB 14503 (-67AG)
Pratt Service Bulletins governing TBO for this engine indicate that the first stage power turbine blades should be replaced at 12,000 hours, while second stage power turbine blades should be replaced at 5,000 hours. Compressor Turbine Blades with certain part numbers must be replaced at 6,000 hours. Main-line rotor bearings #1 and 4 as well as the first stage planet gear set’s sun gear should be replaced at 12,000 hours time. Considering these low hours, it stands to reason that the PT6A will not fly forever if the recommendations are not followed.
PT6A-34AG SB 1303
The 5000 Hour Check, which involves removing the disc from the hot section, removing blades from the disc, cleaning and conducting non-destructive testing, is recommended for the first time at 5,000 hours and at 3,000 hour intervals after that. This inspection also requires comparison of the actual length of the blade but they cannot be cracked. Cracked turbine blades or those stretched beyond limits could be devastating to an aircraft.
These two simple recommendations indicate that PT6A engines do not last forever. Failure to follow these recommendations could result in engine failure. In addition, Pratt & Whitney places significant importance on maintenance recommendations when honoring warranty repairs. Therefore, it is important that owners educate themselves on service bulletins and overhaul recommendations to avoid catastrophe.
If it has been too long of a TBO for you or you have general maintenance, sales, or overhaul questions, make sure you visit the Covington Aircraft website! Happy Flying!