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How Often Do Planes Get Repainted?  
User currently offlineSXDFC From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 2296 posts, RR: 19
Posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 5831 times:

Hello All:

I am sure this question pretty much depends on the Airline / Operator, however I am curious as to how often do airlines tend to repaint their planes? I tend to believe ( or at least at my airline ) it seems as if every 6 years a plane goes in for a repaint, but again I am sure that varies. One other thing I've noticed is that there are times where a particular plane will sport a freshly painted nose, why is this the case? Thank you in advance.


ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
20 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 16990 posts, RR: 67
Reply 1, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 5817 times:

The freshly painted nose is typically because the radome has taken damage (birds, hail, ramp rash...) and has been replaced. It is made of "plastic" in order to be transparent to radar so it is more susceptible to damage than the aluminum skin.

As for complete repaints, AFAIK they would coincide with heavy checks.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineDalmd88 From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 2533 posts, RR: 14
Reply 2, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 5693 times:

Most do it every five or six years. Some do it during heavy check others like DL do not. A merger or livery change can accelerate the repaints.

User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2871 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 5559 times:

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 1):
As for complete repaints, AFAIK they would coincide with heavy checks.

Not for us. We have a separate paint and HMV schedule. Our re-paints are done out in ROW, our HMVs are done (for the A320) in LCQ, TPA and SAL, and (for the E190) BNA.

We typically do a re-paint somewhere around 5 - 7 years. The E190 paint really held up nicely, our first delivered aircraft is getting close to 7 years old now and still hasn't been re-painted, it's just starting to show the same wear as our A320's do after 5.



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19369 posts, RR: 58
Reply 4, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 5488 times:

Quoting SXDFC (Thread starter):
however I am curious as to how often do airlines tend to repaint their planes?

Never.

Signed,
-Air France   

Quoting B6JFKH81 (Reply 3):
We typically do a re-paint somewhere around 5 - 7 years. The E190 paint really held up nicely, our first delivered aircraft is getting close to 7 years old now and still hasn't been re-painted, it's just starting to show the same wear as our A320's do after 5.

Is that a function of the aircraft/fuselage material, or a function of the paint used for each model?


User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2871 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 5471 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 4):
Is that a function of the aircraft/fuselage material, or a function of the paint used for each model?

It's interesting you should ask that, Doc. Last year I was asked to perform the fleetwide paint inspection, a hell of a task where I had to physically inspect every aircraft in the fleet, perform a survey (which I designed) that helped rank the aircraft so the schedule of the re-paints could be made this year. After seeing rivet rash and delamination in my sleep, I asked the same question.

Scuttlebutt is that it is a combination of different things including the preparation of the surface, the primer and paint itself, the materiels of the different areas showing different wear, how many coats/thickness are applied (which came up with the aircraft that had already been re-painted showing signs of wear), AND (this is where the scuttlebutt kicks in) what different chemicals are legal in different parts of this world as Europe has much stricter environmental laws than Brazil. Now, I can neither confirm or deny that last one, but I can see how it would play a role. There are many things out there that have been made to be more "environmentally friendly", but they are just not as durable as they were when they had the more environmentally hazardous stuff in it. So, if the environmental regulations are less restrictive in Brazil, and Embraer can use the nastier paint that is made to stand the test of time, it would help (in part) explain why their paint jobs are lasting nearly 2 years longer.



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24786 posts, RR: 22
Reply 6, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 5467 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 4):
Quoting SXDFC (Thread starter):
however I am curious as to how often do airlines tend to repaint their planes?

Never.

Signed,
-Air France

That's getting very tired. In my experience (AF has a dozen flights a day from GVA), their aircraft are, on average, as clean as other major carriers. I've seen some very shabby U.S. carrier aircraft.

[Edited 2012-10-03 14:43:17]

User currently offlinebueb0g From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2010, 640 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 5460 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 4):
Never.

Signed,
-Air France   

Now that's hardly fair. They repainted them when they did that livery "update".

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
That's getting very tired. In my experience (AF has a dozen flights a day from GVA), their aircraft are, on average, as clean as other major carriers. I've seen some very shabby U.S. carrier aircraft.

Quit ruining our fun!



Roger roger, what's our vector, victor?
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24786 posts, RR: 22
Reply 8, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 5435 times:

Quoting bueb0g (Reply 7):
Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
That's getting very tired. In my experience (AF has a dozen flights a day from GVA), their aircraft are, on average, as clean as other major carriers. I've seen some very shabby U.S. carrier aircraft.

Quit ruining our fun!

I would pick IB as one carrier whose aircraft often seem overdue for painting. The red/orange/yellow colors seem very prone to fading and often look very dull. Of course, not changing their livery for almost 35 years means they don't have that reason to repaint, unlike some U.S. carriers that have changed their liveries 4 or 5 times during the same period..


User currently offlineADent From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 1357 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (1 year 9 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 4893 times:

It looks like N206UA was not painted for 12.5 years.

It was delivered 8/1999 (1st photo here) in battleship grey livery. The airlines livery was changed in 2/2004 to the blue tulip. The plane was repainted from battleship grey to the globe livery in 2/2012, so obviously it was not painted from 2/2004 to 2/2012 - and presumably it was not painted from 8/1999 to 2/2004 and thus 12.5 years in the same paint.


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31667 posts, RR: 56
Reply 10, posted (1 year 9 months 2 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 4749 times:

Depends on the operator......Out here,ours gets touched up every Check C & a total paint every check D......


Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineDL_Mech From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 1926 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 4561 times:

Quoting ADent (Reply 9):
It looks like N206UA was not painted for 12.5 years.

Probably not , but I suspect that it had a major touchup around 2005. The UA cheatline tended to fade badly (both Saul Bass and Battleship) and comparing two pics show quite a difference.


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Daniel Wojdylo
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Daniel Wojdylo



DLs' worst offender was N140LL, which went around 10 years without a repaint. The "dirty" fuselage that people complained about was not actually dirty, the white paint had worn away so badly that the aluminum was showing thru the paint. Up close it looked like someone took sandpaper to it.


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © William Jenkins
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © John Martin




This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19369 posts, RR: 58
Reply 12, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 4512 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
That's getting very tired.

Old, yes. Tired, no.

Quoting B6JFKH81 (Reply 5):
Scuttlebutt is that it is a combination of different things including the preparation of the surface, the primer and paint itself, the materiels of the different areas showing different wear, how many coats/thickness are applied (which came up with the aircraft that had already been re-painted showing signs of wear), AND (this is where the scuttlebutt kicks in) what different chemicals are legal in different parts of this world as Europe has much stricter environmental laws than Brazil. Now, I can neither confirm or deny that last one, but I can see how it would play a role. There are many things out there that have been made to be more "environmentally friendly", but they are just not as durable as they were when they had the more environmentally hazardous stuff in it. So, if the environmental regulations are less restrictive in Brazil, and Embraer can use the nastier paint that is made to stand the test of time, it would help (in part) explain why their paint jobs are lasting nearly 2 years longer.

I guess the test would be to figure out if the Embraers that are repainted outside of Brazil keep their coats as well as the OEM's coat.

Quoting DL_Mech (Reply 11):
DLs' worst offender was N140LL, which went around 10 years without a repaint. The "dirty" fuselage that people complained about was not actually dirty, the white paint had worn away so badly that the aluminum was showing thru the paint. Up close it looked like someone took sandpaper to it.

I wonder how this is going to work once the CFRP planes start flying. They need paint because sunlight is bad for CFRP. Will the need for a more stringent repaint schedule affect efficiency?


User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2871 posts, RR: 7
Reply 13, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4421 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 12):
I guess the test would be to figure out if the Embraers that are repainted outside of Brazil keep their coats as well as the OEM's coat.

We shall see, I believe we will be adding the E190's into the paint line for 2013 and I don't think we have added any other place to do it in so they should be heading out to ROW for it as far as I know. I just started the pain inspection this past week (I am actually doing a different project but since I'm out inspecting planes I might as well look at the pain too for efficiency purposes).



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 14, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 4380 times:

Quoting B6JFKH81 (Reply 13):
I believe we will be adding the E190's into the paint line for 2013

J.. I guess this more to switch over to the new livery..? All of your older E190's still look really good. I miss working with jetBlue on the E190 line, but the new project has been a real challenge.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 12):
I guess the test would be to figure out if the Embraers that are repainted outside of Brazil keep their coats as well as the OEM's coat.

In my years Rep'ing planes for my airline at paint shops there are some really good ones out there...and some I won't paint my bike. I remember one place that waited too long to paint the top coat over the primer. I pulled off a small piece of tape and paint came with it. Before too long I was peeling off sheets of top coat off. Needless to say I made them strip and re-do the entire aircraft.



"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlinedhawald3 From India, joined Jun 2011, 17 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 3983 times:

was curious to know under what ATA code does Aircraft painting come under.

User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 16, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 3948 times:

Quoting dhawald3 (Reply 15):
was curious to know under what ATA code does Aircraft painting come under.

It would be done under the manufactures SRM.... or through the airlines engineering department. Its been a few years since I was signing the paint off but I want to say SRM 51 for painting and AMM 11 for required placards.

[Edited 2012-10-16 13:09:20]


"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31667 posts, RR: 56
Reply 17, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 3861 times:

Quoting dhawald3 (Reply 15):

was curious to know under what ATA code does Aircraft painting come under.
http://www.s-techent.com/ATA100.htm

Good link.



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlinebjorn14 From Norway, joined Feb 2010, 3381 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (1 year 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2951 times:

Quoting B6JFKH81 (Reply 13):
B6JFKH81

Who is the painter @ ROW



"I want to know the voice of God the rest is just details" --A. Einstein
User currently offlineXJetflyer From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 326 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (1 year 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 2694 times:

I have often wondered about the paint schedule also. I have noticed some worn looking aircraft on flights before. Also certain paint schemes show the grime, dirt, water marks more also.

User currently offlineB6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2871 posts, RR: 7
Reply 20, posted (1 year 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 2696 times:

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 14):
J.. I guess this more to switch over to the new livery..? All of your older E190's still look really good. I miss working with jetBlue on the E190 line, but the new project has been a real challenge.

Our oldest aircraft (so the 2005 and early 2006 deliveries) are starting to show their age in the paint. The paint jobs are starting to look "chalky", rivet rash is starting to show more now too, especially in pressure-sensitive areas such as around windows and emergency exits. Engine cowls and pylons also have their issues.

I have not been able to make progress on the paint inspection yet, all I did initially was most of the A320 N7## and N8## series because of the tray table issue we were having on those so I knocked out the paint inspection when I did the tray table inspection. I am starting the FULL paint inspection on the rest of the fleet on Monday now (this has been delayed because of Super Storm Sandy and then the gas crisis up here) so I'll let you know how they look. I don't think there is a rush to switch to the "billboard" titles, as long as the aircraft looks nice and shiny and clean for the customers it's all good. It's going to take a long time to get all the planes over to the newer "billboard" titles.

We miss you too LOL. I really miss BNA, if I had the ability to fill in a tour of duty down there I would but I just cant make the schedule work with all the special projects I do up here at JFK.

Quoting bjorn14 (Reply 18):
Who is the painter @ ROW

Dean Baldwin

http://www.deanbaldwinpainting.com/



"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
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