Doug Hereford

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About Doug Hereford

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    Co-Pilot Member
  • Birthday 01/23/1971

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    Male
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    Kansas City
  1. I would agree that Continental engines (especially "big" ones) seldom go to TBO without a cylinder or two having unscheduled mx. I have worked on many of these engines that are used in commercial operation (135). They typically need more attention in my opinion. That may be due to poor operational techniques though. I have changed numerous Lycoming cylinders as well, but many of those were subjects of Airworthiness directives, and not any observed failures during scheduled inspections. I worked in an engine overhaul shop in the late 80's. Approx. every 3rd Lycoming cylinder had head cracking either at the sparkplug boss, or between the valve seats. Continental cylinder cracking was much less frequent, but when they were cracked, it was much worse. I do think that a lot of Continental cylinders are changed needlessly, but this may have improved with education and a more common reference to the previously noted SB 03-3. I have never changed a Rotax 912 cylinder. In perspective, the Rotax powered aircraft that I have maintained probably have a combined total of 5000 hrs. TIS. Continental and Lycoming would be in the million hour TIS range.
  2. WmInce, Yes, General aviation has no required disposition procedure for discrepancies found during operation. If one is using an MEL, then they would be bound to the procedures in that MEL for deferring inoperative instruments and equipment, but there is no formal process to communicate squawks to maintenance. As Corey stated, other operating rules (121, 135, etc) have more defined requirements/procedures where discrepancies are to be recorded and conveyed to maintenance. In the private sector, an invoice is whatever the customer and service provider agree upon. An invoice most often IS NOT an extension of the aircraft legal records, and I never said that it was. It is in my opinion, a good place to provide detailed documentation of discrepancies, and all actions taken to correct them. My customers feel much better about a labor value when I describe in detail all of the steps that I took to arrive at the corrective action. This is where I would say WHY I performed a certain maintenance task. "Replaced R tire and tube due to it being worn to limits". That might find its way on to my invoice, but would never be stated that way in the aircraft maintenance record, because that is not a correct maintenance entry. I might go into great detail on my invoice about the troubleshooting process that I used to find the root cause of a problem. This justifies the labor, and records every step of my actions...............The maintenance entry however would only contain the actual maintenance that was performed.............ie opened xyz access panel, and repaired 123 interconnect wiring to the outflow valve in accordance with........blah blah blah procedure. A legal "discrepancy list" is an entirely different thing that is required by regulation (43.11) when DISAPPROVING and aircraft for return to service following an inspection. It may be beyond the scope of this discussion, but I would be glad to dive into it on a different thread or whatever works. Also I agree with you that cost is nobody's business but yours and mine. Nothing says that that info. could not be hidden from view if need be. I have used invoices countless times to help confirm prior maintenance. Nothing is more convincing that something has actually been done than knowing that the owner actually paid for it. Doug Hereford
  3. I would add one observation on the 12/4/11 entry. FAR 43.9 requires that when a maintenance entry is made that it be made in the record for the relevant equipment. In Roger's entry, it looks to me like repairs were performed on both the airframe and the engine (which are separate pieces of equipment as is standard). I feel like this is a bit of a gray area where SLSA are concerned. Since in this case, neither the aircraft, nor its engine or propeller are Type certificated, this portion of the rule is arguable to me. Since SLSA must be maintained IAW the "aircraft" manufacturer's procedures, it also mucks up the water. Ideally, engine maintenance should be recorded in engine records, and airframe maintenance should be recorded in the airframe record. Same goes for propellers. The inspection entry is actually a completely separate entry however. Since a "Condition" inspection is a whole aircraft inspection, the most logical place for it would be the airframe record. However, it could/should legally be a stand alone record. Doug Hereford
  4. I briefly looked over the entry (12/4/11) I don't see any really glaring issues. It raises a couple of questions though. Was the ELT inspected as required by 91.207? I see where the battery replacement date was notated. This inspection is required annually, and is not fully captured by the condition inspection. (Roger this is not your responsibility to do on a condition inspection, but good customer service to remind the owner about). Is the aircraft operated for hire? If not, then the next inspection is not due at 594 hrs. as is noted. Either way, Roger, this is not your call and not a part of a required entry. There are several instances where work was noted but no description of the actual work performed (as required by FAR 43.9): engine was removed and reinstalled, carbs were synced, etc................What procedure (or reference to acceptable procedure) was used? There was a bunch of "fluff". While I don't agree with it being there, it is not contrary to reg. Otherwise it looks ok to me. I did not judge it on technical basis. Doug Hereford
  5. kcarab amabo, You touch on a good point. It seems like a lot of us are taught to believe that "log books" are the hallmark items of aircraft maintenance records. This is not true in my opinion. Those pesky little green, maroon and black books are filled with expiring maintenance records that really have little to do with aircraft maintenance status or permanent aircraft RECORDS. My advise to owners is to keep all of those "separate documents" like gold. Go page by page through those little "log books" and find records for the status of Applicable Airworthiness Directives and Safety Directives and other service info., and any records for aircraft alterations. Copy, save or transfer those items to an easy-to-read summary. Also find the entries for the latest inspections..............which for SLSA would be: Condition inspection, ELT annual inspection, and alt/transponder, or just transponder inspection. Transfer that inspection status information to a central location and keep it up to date. Retain FOREVER, evidence of any approvals given by the mfg. to alter your aircraft and any FAA form 337s that may exist for major alterations to FAA approved products that are installed on your aircraft. Ensure that whenever a required inspection is performed (Condition, ELT or Alt/Trans) that the aircraft Total Time in Service is noted in the inspection entry and that the proper sign-off verbiage has been used per your operating limitations. Spend less time worrying about the fluff contained in day-to-day maintenance entries and worry more about the actual quality of maintenance that is done. I have seen the same thing as Tom. Really great paperwork written in a lawyerly fashion backed up by an aircraft that looks like a 30 yr. old tractor. My story about the brakes installed up-side-down (like Tom's control yoke story) was not made-up. Three page annual entry for this PA28-235. The same aircraft had had an engine overhaul with a crankshaft AD overflown, and NO baffle seals on the baffles. The previous inspector was very renowned locally and the owner was extremely proud of his paperwork when he came to me initially. Many, many other examples over the years. I personally like to use email for my day-to-day fluff to the owner. I have also found that you cannot be too detailed when it comes to the invoice. Every move I have made goes into it. The owner may not keep it but you can damn sure bet that I will. Doug Hereford
  6. Wmlnce, I understand what you are saying. I can't speak for others here, but my push-back (if you can call it that) comes primarily from a characterization that certain people be perceived as lazy, bare minimum or otherwise a lessor mx provider on the basis of slanted information. I strongly recommend again that owners read and thoroughly understand 91.417, and talk in depth with their maintenance provider about the practical aspects of this rule. You may be enlightened, you may not. No one will ever argue against good documentation, but sometimes, what constitutes "good" is not as simple as we may think it is. As an aircraft buyer, I am concerned about the same things you said. You might be able to look at records like a paint job. Paint might look really good, but be covering up garbage. Fluffy records can do the same thing. One thing is for sure, if the records don't contain all that the rule requires, there is reason for concern whether buying, selling, or just operating. Doug Hereford
  7. Roger, It seems to me that what your are referring to is more about what you would consider good customer service. I mostly agree. When I am performing an inspection however, I have one task..............discover and properly document "unsafe conditions". While I am inspecting, I don't care how many tire changes the aircraft has had or how many oil changes the aircraft has had, or what last year's compression numbers are. I am not interested in bad-mouthing the previous inspector or maintenance facility. I am not preoccupied with going to court or staying out of court. What records I am interested in as an inspector are: 1. Records of total time in service (so that I can confirm any additional required maintenance due on the basis of time in service. 2. Status of applicable Airworthiness Directives and/or Safety Directives. These pertain directly to unsafe conditions, and may have recurring requirements. 3. Records of alterations and in the case of SLSA, documentation of mfg. authorization to have these alterations performed on the aircraft. Also pertaining to alterations, I must see any additional inspection requirements pertaining to the alteration so that I can confirm that I am performing a complete and proper aircraft inspection. These items are very closely aligned to what 91.417 (a)(2) requires of an owner. The "status of life limited parts" is something that I believe is actually important to SLSA, but doesn't seem to have been considered much with regard to the relevant rules. It is possible for an SLSA aircraft to have life limited parts installed, or other items which are known as Airworthiness Limitations pertaining to them. The status of these items are also a part of 91.417(a)(2) PERMANENT records, and are very important. In my opinion 91.417 as well as most other rules, are not minimums or maximums and should not be looked at in that way. I would also never characterize another airman as lazy, bare minimum, or otherwise deficient on the basis of his/her strict compliance with them. Doug Hereford
  8. I would add a couple of points on supervising. The actual rule that allows supervising to take place is 14 CFR part 43.3. I am not going to paste it, but among other things, It requires that the supervisor be personally available for consultation. In other words, one can't supervise, or be supervised over the phone, text, video, e mail etc. It also prohibits the supervising of any required inspection. Doug Hereford
  9. Tom, I think that 91.417 is a good reference. In my experience, many owners are very unfamiliar with their responsibilities in 14 CFR part 91.417. Mx record "fluff" is a pet peeve of mine. Owners can produce the last 30 yrs. of oil changes and inspections records, but can't show me the current status of applicable Airworthiness Directives or Safety Directives. Many can't find records for alterations. In the end, it doesn't matter much to me from a records point,why a certain maintenance task was performed. As an inspector, I only have to confirm the CURRENT condition of the product. As an inspector, do I really care that a tire was changed because it was worn? I don't. I only care about the current condition of the tire. Do I really care what the last 10 years of compressions were? Not much. I only care what the current compression readings are. As an inspector, I don't really concern myself much with what previous inspectors have done or not done because once my maintenance is complete, and I approve the aircraft for return to service, I own it. Like others, I am not suggesting that additional historical info is not valuable, but it does not belong in a maintenance record. I am also not suggesting to an owner that they discard "expired records". I have actually been skeptical of "fluffy" records in the past. You get a two page inspection entry and when you look at the aircraft from across the hangar you can tell that the brakes are installed upside down. Makes me wonder whether the previous inspection was performed with a flashlight and mirror..................or a pen. But at any rate, it really doesn't matter because I will soon be responsible the my own inspection of the aircraft, and the previous maintenance records will then have effectively "expired". Owners should become very familiar with 91.417, and spend some time talking with their mechanic about the practical reasons why certain records are permanent, and other are not. Doug Hereford
  10. I agree, Know your limitations..............and don't base them solely on some meter that measures stuff. Unless it is your "self accountability" meter. That being said, It is probably good to have some prior experience on your own body's reaction to hypoxia if you plan to fly high. The smartest fliers are the ones who are not very smart........if you know what I mean. I also wholeheartedly agree with being fit. If you are a pilot...............You have surrendered the privilege being out of shape. Doug Hereford
  11. Eddie, I do have a background in pulse ox. Outside of aviation, I am a fire medic in KC. We routinely use Pulse Ox per medical protocol. I DISAGREE that pulse ox should not be used in circumstances that 100Hamburger suggests, rather that is should be used as I suggested.............................one piece of the puzzle. Not end-all be-all. Not diagnostic of anything. Obviously it has some limitations............like anything in aviation that on its face seems like a revelation............................ It is not. For the cost, it is worth it in my opinion to have one for any kind of flying. Doug Hereford
  12. Another interesting point on Pulse Ox........................the hemoglobin in red blood cells (oxygen carrying portion of the blood) has a much higher (like 200 times) affinity for Carbon Monoxide, than for oxygen. Since most O sat monitors measure by photo cell, they will read a falsely high sat with elevated levels of CO (CO is attached to the hemoglobin in the same fashion that O2 does, and the meter does not know the difference). Just food for thought if your level goes up when you might be expecting it to go down while flying. Personally, I like the idea of having a pulse ox meter, but I liken it to the concept of oil analysis in maintenance. As a measurement device, it is subject to errors. We must act accordingly. If my level were to shoot up a bit at altitude, I would at least consider the possibility of an exhaust leak into the cabin. Every situation is slightly different. Therefore, pulse ox is just one piece of the puzzle. Doug Hereford
  13. I have the answer to all of these...........refer to the applicable mfg. tech pubs... Every aircraft can have different specs. I have a fun question........Who has given numerous replys of misinformation and passed them off as fact?
  14. I just read Mike Busch's article in Pilot. It has numerous errors in my opinion.................not least of which is the TBO requirement. As far as wanting something in writing to confirm relief to an SLSA operator from TBO, I would ask this........................... Show me anything in writing that makes TBO required. One will never get the FAA or ASTM to prohibit any manufacturer from making things "mandatory". I don't think that manufacturer's should lose this right anyway, but as has been stated so many times, manufacturer's cannot make laws, therefore when looking for guidance on what is and is not legally required, don't look to manufacturer's, look to regulations. In SLSA specifically, look to 14 CFR 91.327, and operating limitations. There is noting in either of these documents that require mgf TBO's to be adhered to (even if the mfg. states the requirement as "mandatory". Doug Hereford
  15. Tom, I think we are saying basically the same thing. As I have said repeatedly, I am not an anti-parachute zealot either. Just trying to give another perspective on something that, at first glance, seems to have no down-side. I agree that the odds of anything falling from the sky and hitting someone on the ground are fairly slim. I do not agree that it is a non-issue (as has been stated by others). When we first began working on Cirrus aircraft years ago, I started asking many of my professional pilot friends about what they thought of chutes. The almost unanimous responses I got from them were actually very negative. I found myself arguing in favor of the devise more often than not. Now I find myself firmly in the center. I do see it as an additional grave responsibility that we have as pilots...........................the decision to pull or not pull. Doug Hereford