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Airliner Maintenance  
User currently offlineLeothedog From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 155 posts, RR: 0
Posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3700 times:

I've always wondered: How and when does maintenance get performed on a plane? I'll use SW as an example of what I'm asking. Generally speaking, SW planes are flying all day long. First flight is around 6:00 am, and last flight lands at 11:00. The plane then sits at the gate until the next morning. Aloha is another good example. Their 737s are flying across the Pacific every day. When do they get looked at just to make sure everything is good?

How and when do any of the systems get looked at? Is there a schedule? Perhaps after so many hours in the air? Does anyone "Check under the hood? Check the oil level?, ect". Also, when does a plane go in for a "C" check, or "D" check? Also, what is the difference?

I guess what I'm saying is I realize today's jetliners are so very reliable, however, somebody, sometime has to take a look and make sure everything is the way it's supposed to be. When and how does this take place? And again, I ask not just for SW, but for any and every airline.


I've got things to see and people to do.
28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineCommavia From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 11637 posts, RR: 61
Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3681 times:

A good explanation from American Airlines' website is avaiable here (scroll to bottom of page).

User currently offlineLeothedog From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 155 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3669 times:

Commavia,
Thanks for the link. Great information.



I've got things to see and people to do.
User currently offlineMrMcCoy From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 377 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3667 times:

That's a very good explanation of the ABC's. Good link.


It only takes five years to go from rumor to standard operating procedure.
User currently offlineYYZYYT From Canada, joined Apr 2005, 955 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3630 times:

This topic seems perfect for Tech/ops...

In fact there is a huge amount of already there, directly or indirectly:

discussion of different types of checks, which goes into scheduling issues:
RE: Can Someone Please Explain A, B, C, And D Checks (by Whiskeyflyer Oct 8 2004 in Tech Ops)#ID100259

comparison of civil and military maintenance (ditto):
RE: Is Civil Or Mil More Stringent With Maintanence? (by Chdmcmanus Apr 27 2004 in Tech Ops)#ID87635

and maintenance routines generally:

Daily Maintenance (by AgnusBymaster Sep 9 2002 in Tech Ops)#ID47764

RE: Mechanics Help (by Boomer Dec 23 2000 in Tech Ops)#ID6843

RE: Brief Explanation Of Aircraft Maintenance (by Starlionblue Mar 10 2006 in Tech Ops)#ID147894

If you are interested in these things, tech / ops can be a black hole for your free time... heh heh.


User currently offlineYYZYYT From Canada, joined Apr 2005, 955 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3614 times:

Quoting YYZYYT (Reply 4):
This topic seems perfect for Tech/ops...

I'm glad my opinion carries such weight around here!  Wink


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 6, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3517 times:

Nice link.
Scheduled Mx is carried out a fixed time intervals...Both Calender based & Flt hrs based.The Schedule specifies what check is to be carried out.
Its the Unscheduled Mx that causes a lot of Delays  Smile
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineWrighbrothers From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 1875 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3496 times:

For BA.They do a transit check beofre ever flight with a pilot and engineer, they do do verious checks, all the way up to a major overhaul, which takes 20-25 days and is done about every 5 years.
There is a sort of saying, Fly by day and fix by night.

Wrighbrothers



Always stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone..
User currently offlineMatt72033 From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 1617 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 3470 times:

[quote=]The "A" check is more detailed than the "PS" check. "A" checks are performed roughly once a week (approximately 60 flight hours). The "A" check is performed at one of 40 stations around American’s system. It averages 10 - 20 man-hours.[/quote]
10-20 man hours? seems very short to me?
do you think they maybe talking hours as opposed to man hours?


User currently offlineAvionicMech From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 315 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 3467 times:

Quoting Matt72033 (Reply 8):
10-20 man hours? seems very short to me?
do you think they maybe talking hours as opposed to man hours?

Matt, I think the 10-20 man hours is correct. We have adopted a similar system on our 737 aircraft, both the -800's and Classics's here at BY. What happens is the task cards are broken down in small packages, so one of these 'A' checks may only have the gear lube task card and that's it, then the next 'A' check might have the wing lube cards etc. This way the aircraft does not need extended periods on the ground as it would for a bigger 'A' check, with say 2 month intervals.

The only trouble with doing it this way is that you need larger numbers of people rather than just getting a few people who are off shift in on overtime to cover the checks which might be at that base every couple of weeks or so.


User currently offlineMatt72033 From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 1617 posts, RR: 4
Reply 10, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3462 times:

Quoting AvionicMech (Reply 9):

ah ok......we do A checks on our aircraft every 6-8 weeks and they last about 24 hours....give or take!

thats with the whole hangar working on it!


User currently offlineAvionicMech From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 315 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3460 times:

Quoting Matt72033 (Reply 10):
ah ok......we do A checks on our aircraft every 6-8 weeks and they last about 24 hours....give or take!

thats with the whole hangar working on it!

Thats pretty much the way we do it on our 757/767 fleet but it is usually only in the hangar for about 10 hours overnight then ferries back to it's base in the morning.


User currently offlineFr8Mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5453 posts, RR: 14
Reply 12, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 3412 times:

What American calls an A check, we call a Periodic Service. What they call a Periodic Service, we call an Arrival Service. Our PS Checks run 7 - 20 man hours, depending on airframe.

Same terminology, different workscope. Each operator generates its own program, which is approved by the manufacturer and the FAA (or other regulatory body).



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 13, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 3399 times:

Quoting Wrighbrothers (Reply 7):
There is a sort of saying, Fly by day and fix by night.

For Freighters out here its Fly by Night & Fix in Day  Smile
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineN685FE From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 451 posts, RR: 11
Reply 14, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 3394 times:

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 13):
For Freighters out here its Fly by Night & Fix in Day

Not for the utilization we get out of our a/c. If you can't MEL or fix it during the hub turn, you down the a/c and cover with a spare or add a stop to an existing flight. We generally only have 2-4 hrs grnd time at night then they are off. When they arrive at their destination, they turn the a/c in a couple of hours, then back to the hub for another 2-4 hr stay. The greatest amount of grnd for most a/c is over the weekend, Sun-Mon.



psp. lead by example
User currently offlineWrighbrothers From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 1875 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 3319 times:

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 13):
For Freighters out here its Fly by Night & Fix in Day
regds
MEL

I bet they are popular to work on  Smile

Wrighbrothers



Always stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone..
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 3257 times:

Quoting Wrighbrothers (Reply 15):
I bet they are popular to work on

They sure are......Enter the Main deck & theres lots of room  Smile
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineWrighbrothers From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 1875 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3182 times:

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 16):
They sure are......Enter the Main deck & theres lots of room

Haha, at least you don't have to remove the seats and reading lights, air nozzles, carpet etc like comercial aircrafts. Sounds pretty good  Smile

Wrighbrothers



Always stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone..
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 18, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 3164 times:

Quoting Wrighbrothers (Reply 17):

Chapter 25 is almost not present.A part of Chapter 38 too.  Smile
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineAmtrosie From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 274 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 3007 times:

Quoting Leothedog (Thread starter):
How and when do any of the systems get looked at?

There-in lies the crux of the aircraft maintenance job. OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND. You will not see this done because a VAST!!! majority of airliner (and others) maintenance is done in the dark of night. Most of the posters on this sight work midnights. They work tired and sleep deprived more often than not. The job requirerments are tough- on personal, social, and recreational lives. This is huge reason why so many are leaving the industry. REMEMBER: "if you got there, thank the mechanic".


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 20, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 3006 times:

Quoting Amtrosie (Reply 19):
There-in lies the crux of the aircraft maintenance job. OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND. You will not see this done because a VAST!!! majority of airliner (and others) maintenance is done in the dark of night. Most of the posters on this sight work midnights. They work tired and sleep deprived more often than not. The job requirerments are tough- on personal, social, and recreational lives. This is huge reason why so many are leaving the industry. REMEMBER: "if you got there, thank the mechanic".

Don't forget the Studies required & the lack of time.Its a balance between Nights,Studies,Rest & Family life priority wise  Smile
But if you love the Field,You'll fight on as long as you can.  bigthumbsup 

regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineLMP737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2975 times:

Quoting Amtrosie (Reply 19):
There-in lies the crux of the aircraft maintenance job. OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND. You will not see this done because a VAST!!! majority of airliner (and others) maintenance is done in the dark of night. Most of the posters on this sight work midnights. They work tired and sleep deprived more often than not. The job requirerments are tough- on personal, social, and recreational lives. This is huge reason why so many are leaving the industry. REMEMBER: "if you got there, thank the mechanic".

Oh so very true. By the end of my work week I'm exhausted. My first day off is spent recovering from work. It's a simple fact that humans are not nocturnal creatures and are not meant to be up all night. On days I work I'm lucky to get six hours sleep during the day. One thing I've noticed that after a certain hour during the night I might as well forget about troubleshoting. It's hard enough just staying awake let alone figuring out a probllem.


User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14026 posts, RR: 62
Reply 22, posted (8 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 2942 times:

Quoting LMP737 (Reply 21):
Quoting Amtrosie (Reply 19):
There-in lies the crux of the aircraft maintenance job. OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND. You will not see this done because a VAST!!! majority of airliner (and others) maintenance is done in the dark of night. Most of the posters on this sight work midnights. They work tired and sleep deprived more often than not. The job requirerments are tough- on personal, social, and recreational lives. This is huge reason why so many are leaving the industry. REMEMBER: "if you got there, thank the mechanic".

Oh so very true. By the end of my work week I'm exhausted. My first day off is spent recovering from work. It's a simple fact that humans are not nocturnal creatures and are not meant to be up all night. On days I work I'm lucky to get six hours sleep during the day. One thing I've noticed that after a certain hour during the night I might as well forget about troubleshoting. It's hard enough just staying awake let alone figuring out a probllem.

I have worked almost exclusively night shift for 5 years at my old job, which suited me fine, since I'm rather a night owl. But still, with my present job (I'm working 12 hour shifts, 5 days 7am to 7 pm, 5 days off, 5 night 7 pm to 7 am, 5 days off...) on my first day off I'm totally exhausted and tend to sleep for almost the whole day. Worst is the conversion from nights to days, the other way around is not so bad.
The exhausting thing is not so much the actual work on the aircraft (though, being the only B1 Engineer on shift lets me do practically all troubleshooting and most non-routine repairs, routine jobs I can delegate to the Cat A mechanic and the unlicenced mechanics), but the responsibility, not just towards airworthiness requirements, but also towards the airline. In the end I'm responsible for any delay and I also have to make sure that my T/S is spot on or I'll get into trouble for wasting money for unnecessary spares. Add to this that other departments like to use maintenance to dump delays on, even if we haven't been involved at all. Example: You've got a plane with an APU on MEL. The plane needs an airstarter. The ground handling company, which supplies the air starter doesn't get it's act together and causes a delay. Still they write the delay on us and I'll have to write a report to get it off our necks. The same happened with a pilot who didn't read his operations manual and didn't know how to operate the FMC, typical finger trouble. He blamed the resulting delay on us.

Jan


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 23, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 2703 times:

If you rest well after a Night shift,things are easier on the next night.Else it can be very Taxing Physically.
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineOkie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3044 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2677 times:

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 22):
Add to this that other departments like to use maintenance to dump delays on, even if we haven't been involved at all.

 checkmark 

While not involved with aviation, a common practice in any industry.
I can not tell you how many meetings I have sat in where the "CYA" syndrome had lead to the point of being ridiculous.
My philosophy has always been to use delay reports as a TOOL to know which direction to allocate your resources, whether training and what area, additional oversight, man power, financial, parts, etc.
The CYA syndrome seems to always prevail regardless.

Okie


25 AirframeAS : Remember: Not all of the airlines have the SAME Part 121 Continued Airworthiness Maintenance Programs. Each one has its own unique program that MUST b
26 AirframeAS : I forgot to add: the D.O.D. does the same thing too.
27 Ilikeyyc : Here at EV, we will be transitioning from the typical A checks (done every 500 hours) and C checks (every 4000 hours) to a phase inspection program. I
28 MesaMXORD : EMB-145 2DAY/5DAY checks, and routines every 100hrs I think "A" checks are 400hrs CRJ-200 Service CK Every 3 Days, and routines every 100hrs same on "
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