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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 2:44 pm 
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https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2020/march/26/faa-rejects-collings-foundation-petition
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.....and the FAA’s March 25 decision revoking the foundation’s exemption allowing passenger flights with immediate effect noted additional findings from a post-crash inspection of engines 3 and 4.

“Regarding engine 4, to prevent the magneto 'P' leads from separating from the magnetos, someone had attempted to rig the magneto leads in place with safety wire. Inspection and testing of engine 4 left magneto revealed the movement of the safety-wired lead caused grounding to the case, which rendered the magneto lead inoperative. In addition, the right magneto of engine 4 was found unserviceable,” the FAA noted in the March 25 decision. “An inspection of engine 3 showed all spark plugs electrode gaps were out of tolerance, fouled, and revealed various signs of detonation. Further inspection of this engine revealed problems with the cylinders.”

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:28 pm 
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One other thing that is not mentioned and I am sure a lot of you already know this.

Since the NTSB / FAA found negligence and intentional bad maintenance - This will give the Insurance company an out, not to pay-out on this claim.

The interesting part of this report is it looks like the remains was moved relatively intact for the investigation.

Since it mentions only 4 x fuel tanks, presume they are talking about the A & B (L/R) tanks and that the feeder tank was removed
.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:59 pm 
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I've often wondered how they performed maintenance and repair while spending so many months away from home barnstorming

I guess the answer is chewing gum and safety wire and we'll fix it when we get home

Tom Bowers


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:45 pm 
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hbtcoveralls wrote:
I've often wondered how they performed maintenance and repair while spending so many months away from home barnstorming

I guess the answer is chewing gum and safety wire and we'll fix it when we get home

Tom Bowers

I'm guessing there was a progressive maintenance plan. They do a little of the recurring maintenance at a time. I think they have a van that followed them around with tools and parts.

You can also defer some maintenance. There should be a Minimum Equipment List that states what is minimally required for flight. A cabin heater might not be essential for flight and a seeping hydraulic strut might be OK, but two magnetos per engine most certainly would be required!


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:59 pm 
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most 17's are flying using just the mains, the Tokyo tanks are removed,

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:06 pm 
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hbtcoveralls wrote:
I've often wondered how they performed maintenance and repair while spending so many months away from home barnstorming

Tom Bowers


When the EAA visited us some years ago, they designated a down day for maintenance at my home field which has a repair station and several mechanics with warbird/round engine experience. I assume (but don't know) that most of the touring groups do something like that.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:04 am 
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Not good.

"No seat with a seatbelt on the aircraft existed for the Collings Foundation Crew Chief."

Having a seat with a belt for every member of the crew seems like something that should be common sense. Nobody should need 30-40 years of maintenance experience on anything to see that. If there's a "good" reason for that to occur on any aircraft, perhaps someone can enlighten me.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 12:43 pm 
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kalamazookid wrote:
Not good.

"No seat with a seatbelt on the aircraft existed for the Collings Foundation Crew Chief."

Having a seat with a belt for every member of the crew seems like something that should be common sense. Nobody should need 30-40 years of maintenance experience on anything to see that. If there's a "good" reason for that to occur on any aircraft, perhaps someone can enlighten me.

There never was a seat for the crew chief, and when I was on Journey, there was no seat as he could not do his job had there been one. Once take off power was set, it was the crew chief who kept and eye on the engine gauges and guarded the throttles.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 12:55 pm 
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bdk wrote:
hbtcoveralls wrote:
I've often wondered how they performed maintenance and repair while spending so many months away from home barnstorming

I guess the answer is chewing gum and safety wire and we'll fix it when we get home

Tom Bowers

I'm guessing there was a progressive maintenance plan. They do a little of the recurring maintenance at a time. I think they have a van that followed them around with tools and parts.

You can also defer some maintenance. There should be a Minimum Equipment List that states what is minimally required for flight. A cabin heater might not be essential for flight and a seeping hydraulic strut might be OK, but two magnetos per engine most certainly would be required!


There is no MEL for the B-17.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:11 pm 
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I wonder if Collings is considering a display location for the B-24 and their other aircraft in light of recent events. I guess it wouldn’t affect their jet warbirds, as I doubt they got many paid rides off those anyway?
Like most of you, I’m very disheartened to read this. This sets what I think is a scary precedence for anyone getting a future flight on a WW2 aircraft they don’t own, as there are several well-known operators who rely on flight experiences who are in the same (and maybe worse for some) positions than Collings was before this bad landing.
I haven’t flown with the Collings group in a very long time, not since I left Florida.
Back then, they’d use my hometown of Tallahassee as a maintenance stop soon after the start of the annual tour to work any ‘bugs’. As few would show up to the see the planes, it was a perfect spot (it also allowed me to get ‘volunteer’ rides to the next stop due to empty seats) for that.
There were a few things I saw over the years that puzzled me, but nothing worse than I saw when Tallichet brought his B-17 though, or the CAF, VAC and other groups would come around with their aircraft.
On my first B-24 ride with Collings, they shut down # 4 as soon as we left the ground. I asked why, and was told that the FAA required all 4 to be turning on takeoff, but the engine was giving them problems, and they didn’t want to work on it in Tallahassee, so they just fired it up to satisfy that requirement for leaving the field. As we all know an empty Liberator can do just fine on three engines, I didn’t give it another thought.
But looking back, I think of all the other “this will do until we can get to it for real” things I witnessed with many warbird operators over the years. Collings had NO monopoly on this.
My biggest concern is that the FAA will now shine their light onto all the other operators to see what they’re doing and then decide to start pulling the plug on paid rides for them as well. Few of them can afford to ‘barnstorm’ with no paid rides unless they hit big shows or venues with a lot of people who’ll pay to walk through the planes on the ground.
With everything else going on the country (I’m hearing rumors of a lot of airshows getting ready for the possibility of having to cancel this summer), this couldn’t have come at a worse time for those counting on paid rides to keep their plane sin the air.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:57 pm 
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I don't recall what was done when I flew on Aluminum Overcast but I know for sure in 909 the engineer stood between the pilot and copilot monitoring gauges and being a third set of eyes and hands for takeoff and climbout, and he was also the one that pulled RPM back and synced the engines after takeoff.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 3:57 pm 
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Looking at this big-picture from a legal-regulatory perspective, it may be good news for the other touring groups that maintenance irregularities WERE found.

From their perspective, this is better than a finding that unacceptable risks are inherent to the operation of these aircraft, which would threaten the whole ride program.

This way, effectively, the others can throw Collings under the bus, say "but we're doing it right," and keep on operating. Assuming they ARE doing it right, that is. If they're not, they'll start right now!

Meanwhile, Collings can put new measures into place and re-apply for its waiver. It'll be looked at extra hard, but this isn't a permanent ban.

August

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:32 pm 
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It's another nail in the coffin. We might be looking back at 2019
as the good old days, when we actually saw these aircraft flying.

Phil

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 6:17 pm 
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To me if the Thunder City Lightening crash didnt wake up Warbird operations then nothing will....Maybe now?

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 6:35 pm 
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Just curious,was this B-17 was being operated legally with a crew chief standing behind the center pedestal watching throttles and gauges during takeoff (and maybe landing too) ?


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