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The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

Tribute To J. Robert Duncan, Part II

Posted by Kate Dolan on Thu, Apr 28, 2016 @ 10:37 AM

DonaldDuncan_RobertDuncan.jpgAs mentioned in Part I, Robert’s father, Donald Duncan, founded Duncan Aviation in 1956 and this year, Duncan Aviation celebrates 60 years. Now read the rest of the story of how Robert’s vision transitioned the small, family business from its modest beginnings into a company with a respected presence around the world.

You can read Tribute To J.Robert Duncan, Part I here 

Parts Consignment

Don Fiedler, now Manager of New Business Development for Components, joined the 10-year-old company in 1966 as the fourth member of the very new avionics team. The team repaired and installed avionics equipment on Bonanzas, Barons, and King Airs, and they also did some work on Harry’s helicopters.

As the industry started shifting from primarily piston engines to turbines, Robert saw the surplus parts for the older prop planes just sitting on shelves, and he surmised that there were probably FBOs around the country that had similar investments in unmoving parts. He envisioned a program where companies would send Duncan Aviation their surplus parts and, based on very new, barely known computer networking—a precursor of today’s Internet—Duncan Aviation would create an inventory of the parts and sell them on consignment.  This vision became AVPAC (Parts & Rotables today) in the early 1980s.

1985AVPAC.jpg“I've had the opportunity to work with all four generations. Donald in the early days, then Robert, and now Todd and his sons,” says Project Manager Howard Nitzel. “Robert always had good people to run the day-to-day operations for him. He would be looking at the future, always four or five years out, and willing to try new things. AVPAC is a classic example—a parts support services. It was kind of a pipe dream, and it really took off into a whole industry. Robert was a true visionary, made the company grow, and took care of everyone and their families. He’s a true businessman in every sense of the word.”

Don Fiedler explains that Robert’s vision was to establish a network, collect the parts, set fair prices, and ship them out to buyers the day they ordered.

“He wanted to make it easy to find parts and to get a fair price for them,” says Don. “And he wanted to make sure the inventory was meticulously maintained so we never claimed to have parts we didn’t. ‘First in, first out,’ was Robert’s rule.”

Robert  met with Bob McCammon (now manager of Aircraft Sales), Bob Tooker (Senior Sales Rep/Quality Control for Parts & Rotables Sales), Larry Stewart (former Senior Rotables Manager who retired in January after 43 years with Duncan Aviation), and Don Fiedler and explained his idea to get Duncan Aviation into the parts consignment business.

“It was a wonderful thing to work for that man,” says Don. “I’ve always looked up to Robert. I genuinely know him and really respect and like him. The word I most associate with Robert is ‘visionary.’ He surrounded himself with people who could take his ideas and run with them. And, to his credit, although the ideas were his, he always gave us free rein to make his dreams a reality.”

The Satellite Network

Once AVPAC was up and running, Robert again approached Don with an idea. This time, Robert told Rick Whitesell and Don of an experience he and his wife Karen had at a Lincoln’s Hovland-Swanson department store.

“Karen was trying on shoes, and as I waited, I talked to the manager of the shoe department,” says Robert.  “He told me he worked for a national shoe company. He said, ‘We specialize in shoes; we just lease this space.’ This got me thinking, ‘How could Duncan Aviation, with our expertise in avionics, expand that around the country?’”

Sat-History_03.jpgOne of Duncan Aviation’s greatest assets has always been its employees. Robert knew there were talented, experienced, knowledgeable technicians in Lincoln, hundreds if not thousands of miles away from where the avionics were that needed servicing.

“We joke that the avionics satellites are Robert’s five-minute idea that exploded,” says Don. “He said, ‘How ‘bout this idea? We lease space at established, respected FBOs around the country and put in two-man avionics shops. We keep it simple—do simple stuff in the field and continue to have the complex stuff sent to Lincoln. And we offer free loaners and free tech support.’ That was it!”

As a result of Robert’s “five-minute idea,” Duncan Aviation now has more than 20 avionics satellite shops located at busy airports around the country. Not only do our customers drop into these facilities for quick repairs, but also they can schedule complex installations, including upgrades to avionics that satisfy the NextGen mandates.

Robert credits Don for the success of the program. “It was my concept, but Don ran with it, and now Matt is managing all of them,” says Robert.

Matt is Matt Nelson, Manager of Satellite Operations. He started at Duncan Aviation in 1987 when he was 18 years old, and it was his first full-time job.

“It was summertime, and Todd Duncan and I were in the warehouse washing cars and airplanes,” laughs Matt. “We were about the same age, and we worked hard.”

As someone who has worked at Duncan Aviation for 29 years, Matt is a member of an exclusive club called Silver Wings.

Silver Wings

Silver Wings is a club that Robert created to celebrate employees who have worked at Duncan Aviation for 25 years or more. Because silver commemorates a 25th anniversary, the group that worked with Robert to establish the club chose Silver Wings as its name.

“It’s a way to recognize all of the many contributions our steadfast, loyal, dedicated employees have made in their tenure here. Many of them have been here far longer than 25 years, too, including Don Fiedler. This year, he’ll celebrate his 50th year with the company,” says Robert. “The Silver Wings employees, about 300 of them now, are the core of what Duncan Aviation is about, and they’re the reason so many of our customers can call Duncan Aviation and talk to the same person they’ve dealt with for 25 years or more. It means so much in our industry, and it means so much to us as a company, too.”

SilverWings2014_2.gifThose employees say the same thing about Robert Duncan and Duncan Aviation

“This company has been my life, mostly because of how the Duncan family has always cared for their employees,” says Don. “It’s a company built on integrity, and I’ve always felt privileged to be a part of something so special. It was such an adventure to get hired on at such a young, exciting place, and I’ve been here to see it grow and become the respected company it is today.”

Todd Duncan, too, is a member of the Silver Wings club, as he has been working at Duncan Aviation for 28 years.

Robert’s Son, Todd Duncan

Robert_Todd.jpgTodd has been Chairman of Duncan Aviation since 2007, and he’s seen the company ride the waves, the highs and lows, of the business aviation industry.

“One thing I’ve always admired my Dad for is what he brought to the business every single day, regardless of what we were facing, and that’s his optimistic spirit. He’s always able to look to and find brighter days,” says Todd. “He’s a tremendously forward-looking man, and he’s always so positive. He cares deeply about our employees and our customers. He’s the kind of man who inspires others to do their best, too.”

Todd agrees with what Robert calls the immeasurable value of the employees at Duncan Aviation. Father and son are keenly aware of the network of support they have created and developed at Duncan Aviation.

13100833_10153785619453999_2127267970112683311_n.pngYesterday, at the annual AEA convention in Orlando, Florida, Robert was given a life-time achievement award, recognizing his contributions to the aviation industry and acknowledging everything he’s done at Duncan Aviation in the last 60 years.

 “I couldn’t have done it alone. Everybody out there is doing the work every day—turning the wrenches, fixing the avionics, selling something, or providing support in accounting,” says Robert. “It takes everyone to make this company succeed.”

 

Tags: Avionics & Instruments, Avionics Installation, Announcements, 60th Anniversary

Tribute To J. Robert Duncan, Part I

Posted by Kate Dolan on Wed, Apr 27, 2016 @ 09:21 AM

This morning, J. Robert Duncan, Chairman Emeritus of Duncan Aviation, was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Aircraft Electronics Association at the organization’s international convention and trade show in Orlando, Florida.

IMG_20160426_155759253_HDR_2.jpgRobert’s father, Donald Duncan, founded Duncan Aviation in 1956 and this year, Duncan Aviation celebrates 60 years since that story began.

However, less known is the story of how Robert transitioned the small, family business from its modest beginnings into a company with a respected presence around the world.

In The Beginning

In 1956, when Duncan Aviation opened its hangar doors, 14-year-old Robert was there.

“I was there doing minor things, working on the line, and I joined the company full-time after graduating from Northwestern in 1965,” says Robert. “Harry Barr had been like a big brother to me when I was growing up. He taught me how to fly, and I got my pilot’s license as soon as I could. I was taking lessons when I was 15 and soloed at 16. After getting my private license when I was 17, I kept right on flying and got my commercial license at 18. It feels like I’ve always flown, and I just love it.”

Piloting a plane lets Robert detach himself from daily demands and get up where it’s quiet; he loves going fast and seeing the world in a whole new way.

Robert’s passion for flying helped him relate well to customers and employees alike. In addition to enjoying the freedom of actually flying, he also loved the mechanics, avionics, and power of airplanes. Growing up, Robert had helped his father put away, clean, and work on airplanes for as long as he can remember.

In the early days, when Duncan Aviation was a Beech distributor, one of Robert’s jobs was to go to Wichita, Kansas, and fly the new planes to Lincoln. He flew Bonanza Barons, Twin Bonanzas, and Beech 18s.

In helping finance Bill Lear’s dream of building innovative turbine-powered aircraft, Donald Duncan secured rights for Duncan Aviation to distribute Learjet aircraft.  Robert then became the youngest certified pilot at 23 years old to fly the aircraft whose name was synonymous with speed, performance, and luxury.

Now Chairman Emeritus of Duncan Aviation, Robert still enjoys the speed and the freedom of flying; he flies a Mustang and an M2.

“I love those airplanes, especially for the avionics equipment,” says Robert. “They give me the ability to fly myself and do so in a very safe way.”Robert-collage_sm.jpg

Core Values & Innovation

The dreams Donald and Harry had for Duncan Aviation were shared by Robert from early in the company’s history. Donald, Harry, and Robert started a helicopter business in western Nebraska, and Robert says his father and Harry taught him to always take advantage of new opportunities, to look for new products that will serve customers better, and to stay active and involved in the community.

“My father instilled in me an attitude of growth and opportunity,” says Robert. “I was always on the lookout for new adventures, new airplanes, and new opportunities.”

Robert’s son Todd, now Chairman of Duncan Aviation, learned those same lessons.

“Dad and Grandpa said you always had to take care of the fundamentals. We’re a small business, in a small industry. We don’t make the airplanes, but our business is about everything that comes after that,” says Todd. “Create a cooperative environment, don’t create silos, and don’t run things like dictators. We work in an industry that requires collaboration and teamwork, so we have to foster that every day here at Duncan Aviation, too.”

A New Beginning

In 1981, when Robert was 41 years old, his father died suddenly. Donald’s death shocked the entire company, and especially Robert.

“We were in the midst of pretty tough times. Inflation was high and interest rates were astronomical; our business was weak,” says Robert. “We needed new enterprises and new opportunities for our employees.”

Donald’s focus had been sales, and Robert knew he had to grow the business in other ways. He recruited talented people to run new endeavors, and one of them was the Interior shop. There was no design center or cabinet shop, yet, but the small shop fixed broken seats and installed carpet, headliners, and side ledges. Robert envisioned much more, and he recruited Jeannine Falter to head the shop.

Jeannine_Falter_Photos_001_SM.jpg“I had been working for Learjet when my 47-year-old father had a heart attack, so I decided to accept the Duncan Aviation job offer and move back to Nebraska,” says Jeannine. “I gave my notice and said I was going to work for Duncan Aviation. People at Learjet took me aside and tried to talk me out of it. This was shortly after Donald had died, and they didn’t think the company would survive. They underestimated Robert and his entrepreneurial talent. He’s smart, open to new ideas, and willing to take risks. I’ve never regretted my decision to work for Robert.”

In the following years, Robert envisioned several more advances that not only created new avenues of business for Duncan Aviation, but also grew the company and spread its name and reputation around the world. Among the ideas that Robert conceived of were AVPAC and the Duncan Aviation satellite avionics facilities.

Tags: Announcements, 60th Anniversary

OH...FOD!  Checked Your Drawers Lately?

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Thu, Apr 14, 2016 @ 10:20 AM

FOD-small.jpgThat screwdriver that mysteriously went missing from the toolbox, a scrap of wire or a pack of Lifesavers might not look threatening. But as any A&P Tech will tell you, anything that’s somewhere it doesn’t belong sets the stage for a potentially dangerous situation. Such objects are known as FOD, and Duncan Aviation’s technicians are finding more of them more frequently.

It is common knowledge that any foreign object in, on or around an aircraft can have tragic results. Yet some of our airframe techs have discovered many of these objects during inspections across all makes and models of aircraft. Everything from small bits of trash to misplaced pieces of on-board equipment have been found trapped under floorboards and lying on top of wire bundles.

The definitions of FOD can be as varied as the objects that can cause it: Foreign Object Damage, Foreign Object Debris, etc. One thing all aviation experts agree on is that if FOD is in your aircraft or if it affects the external areas of your aircraft it can lead to an extremely serious situation. FOD comes in many forms–typically debris from other aircraft. It can be nothing more than a small rivet or any other type of object on the ramp or runway.

Tire punctures are common with runway FOD. Hopefully this type of debris is caught during pre-flight inspections and the result is only an inexpensive tire replacement and not a blowout during takeoff.

Internal FOD can result from work crews leaving an object trapped behind a panel or floorboard somewhere on the aircraft. It can even be a part of the airplane that was moved and not returned to its proper place.

During inspections, our techs have discovered items ranging from tie-raps, avionic control buttons, pencils and even an auxiliary gear handle that was lying on top of the flight control pulleys under the co-pilot floor. Any FOD trapped under floorboards can be a potential hazard to the safe operation of an aircraft. Sharp objects found lying on wire bundles, hydraulic lines, pitot static lines, etc., are especially dangerous and can have a chafing potential which can again lead to a catastrophic failure.

Real-World_FOD_033_FIN.jpgDuncan Aviation's technicians found this red Auxiliary Gear Handle (which belongs to the aircraft) sitting on top of the flight control pulleys.
Consider this fictional nightmare scenario: After a maintenance event, an auxiliary gear handle is left under the pilot’s floor lying on top of the flight control pulleys. The crew has done a thorough preflight, but does not have X-ray vision and has no idea what’s below them. They start down the runway for the flight home and just as the PNF (pilot not flying) calls V1 (the decision speed to abort the takeoff or fly) one engine quits, so the PF (pilot flying) immediately adds rudder for directional control. The auxiliary gear handle slips from its resting place due to the abnormal side loads and wedges into the rudder cables. The rudder is designed to travel a set number of degrees to give a pilot the required directional control at the speed above V1. Since the handle is now restricting the designed amount of deflection, the pilot’s only option is to reduce power on the good engine to match what rudder is available and PRAY that is enough.

Depending on the type of FOD, a loss of any system aboard an airplane is possible. This can lead to a life-threatening scenario during takeoff, flight and landing. Normally these types of FOD issues don’t arise because of the professional training and maintenance ethics of A&Ps. Vigilance to the task at hand can eliminate many forms of FOD.

When it comes to FOD, carelessness should never be tolerated and strict procedures must be followed. Duncan Aviation is extremely serious about FOD and has an inspection system in place that is strictly adhered to in order to ensure that all foreign objects, regardless of area of origination, are secured prior to panel/floor close up. At Duncan Aviation a task on or around an aircraft is not completed until FOD is eliminated. Make sure to review the FOD procedures at any maintenance facility you might choose and make sure they take FOD as seriously as they should.

Engine FOD Potentially Catastrophic

TFE731-Bird-Strike_45-184_004_FIN.jpg

Engine FOD can be the most dangerous of all FOD. Any material that rips through any engine can cause a catastrophic failure. Engine FOD is both internal and external. Internal FOD can be mitigated through the use of strict procedures. (Check to see the procedures your service provider uses.) External FOD requires proper planning and observation to eliminate.

Internal FOD may include any tool, part or anything a technician may use while servicing an engine. Rivets are common FOD elements for engines. Years ago, a chief pilot decided to test his flight crew’s FOD procedures by placing his hat inside an engine intake. Before he could warn them of his plan, they tested the engine. Several thousand dollars of damage resulted.

External FOD is much more dangerous if the aircraft is in flight. External FOD may include airborne debris such as a sand storm or volcanic ash from an eruption or even hail or ice ingestion. Be aware of FAA NOTAMs in the area of your flight plan. Also be careful when taxiing behind large aircraft as their jet blast and general size can kick up quite a bit of debris.

The damage to the TFE731 engine above was caused by a bird strike. We found damage to the fan blades, nose cowl leading edge, fan stator, and compressor impeller... just to name a few. Depending on the strike, one bird can cause more than half-a-million dollars in damages.

Tags: Engine Maintenance, Airframe Maintenance

We Did It Again! Another Unique Duncan Aviation Aircraft Paint [Video]

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Tue, Apr 05, 2016 @ 01:36 PM

Duncan Aviation’s aircraft paint experts never cease to amaze. Watch this time-lapse video of our team in Lincoln, Nebraska, as they create custom ghost artwork on the left- and right-hand fuselage of BurgerFi’s Bombardier Global.

Look close. Can you see the company name and logo in silver sparkle flake?

BugerFI-2.gifBugerFI-5.gif

Colors used:

AkzoNobel Matterhorn White
Axalta Carbon Black
Axalta Gray
Axalta Silver Sparkle
House of Kolor Silver Mini Flake
House of Kolor Ice Pearl
Sherwin Williams Acry Glo Clear

 

Tags: Videos, Aircraft Paint

Fort Lauderdale Avionics Satellite Gets Settled In Their New Location

Posted by Kate Dolan on Wed, Mar 30, 2016 @ 12:13 PM

Moving is a hassle, but the Duncan Aviation satellite facility in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, recently endured the stress and mess in order to take up residence in a spacious new hangar. After vacating a paltry 1,000 square feet of leased space in a 1940’s-era facility, they found themselves with 32,000 square feet in a state-of-the-art hangar that was built in 2007.

Ft.-Lauderdale_sm.jpgEstablished in 1986, the Fort Lauderdale shop has always been located in space rented from and shared with other businesses. As those businesses grew and expanded, the Duncan Aviation shop would have to relocate. Earlier this year, Satellite Operations Manager Matt Nelson and Manager of the Fort Lauderdale shop Brian Redondo realized it would be beneficial for customers if the satellite stopped bouncing around and set up shop in its own hangar.

The shop and offices take up the entire second floor of the hangar and leases much of the main-floor space to Part 91, low-utilization customers who want to store their aircraft in a limited access, secure facility.

“Currently, our hangar houses a Falcon 2000, Hawker 800XP, Learjet 60, and Gulfstream IV, in addition to our aircraft in for maintenance” says Fort Lauderdale Satellite Manager Brian Redondo. “All of them are owned by long-time Duncan Aviation customers. They appreciate the fact that our facility is private, so people can’t just wander in and out, and as tenants they get the fastest service Duncan Aviation can offer.”

Hired as the manager of the Fort Lauderdale shop in 2006, Brian has grown the facility from five employees to 12. One of the things he loves about Duncan Aviation is that although it’s a somewhat large company, it’s still family owned, and employees are treated as family.

“I’ve worked for small companies with five people where you got paid if the owner showed up with his checkbook, and large companies where I was just a number. I still remember that number, too, because I had to use it every time I went to the tool crib, to HR or filled out a form,” says Brian. “I like the culture at Duncan Aviation. It’s large enough to provide stability and benefits and small enough that everyone knows my name.”

When he was about five-years old and living in Old Forge, New York, Brian remembers standing on a dock on Fourth Lake—one of the Fulton Chain Lakes in Adirondack Park—with his father and grandfather. One of his grandfather’s friends pulled up to the dock in his Piper Cub on floats, and Brian and his dad climbed in. They took off, and from the minute the plane lifted off of the lake, Brian was hooked on flying.

Years later at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida, Brian got his A&P license, and earned a bachelor’s degree in Aviation Technology (aka avionics). He worked at a number of facilities big and small until he was hired as the manager of the Fort Lauderdale shop in 2006.

With the larger shop space, Brian anticipates an increase in business in the coming year. Currently, less than 50 percent of the avionics installations at the Fort Lauderdale facility satisfy mandates for the upcoming NextGen deadlines.

Click here For more information on NextGen deadlines

“I’d expect to see an increase from our current level to about 75 percent in the coming year,” says Brian. “We also install and repair just about anything: Flight data recorders, flight management systems, 60Hz cabin power, USB outlets, a little cabin entertainment and lots and lots of Wi-Fi to name a few.”

Brian is relieved to have the move behind him, and he’s looking forward to the shop’s future growth. He’s especially appreciative of the support he and the rest of the team members get from Matt Nelson and other managers at Duncan Aviation.

“It’s been a lot of fun to watch the Fort Lauderdale team grow in number and reputation,” says Matt. “I couldn’t be more proud of what they’ve been able to accomplish in such a competitive environment.” 

Tags: Avionics Installation, Announcements

Phil Porter & Duncan Aviation’s International Aircraft Parts Department

Posted by Kate Dolan on Thu, Mar 24, 2016 @ 03:30 PM

Porter-Phil_sm.jpgIn 1978, Phil Porter was hired as Duncan Aviation’s first logistics manager; although, at the time, he was called a parts runner. Nearing the completion of his fourth decade at Duncan Aviation, Phil took some time to reflect on his long tenure with the company.

“I was going to UNL when my girlfriend Cindy took me up in her Cessna 150,” says Phil. “We dropped in on the Duncan Aviation ramp, and I was enamored of the place. Right then, I decided I wanted to be a part of it, so I changed my plans to head home to the Chicago area. Cindy and I got married, and I applied here for a job.”

Phil was both the aircraft parts runner and the shipping department back then, and he had to physically search shelves for parts. There were no computers or inventory control back then.

“And I personally packed up and shipped everything that left the company,” says Phil. “I’d call Trailways bus to find out the schedule and then drive the packages to the depot.”

One time Phil was unable to find a way to ship the horizontal stabilizer to Wichita, Kansas, for singer Paul Anka’s Learjet, so he packed it into his car and drove it there himself. Leaving Lincoln at 5:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning, Phil arrived at the Learjet facility about five hours later. He drove up to the main hangar, parked in the late Harry B. Combs’ [President of Learjet from 1971 until 1982] parking space, and looked for someone to help unload the stabilizer.

Although driving a stabilizer from one state to the next was somewhat unusual for a parts runner, Phil’s story illustrates how Duncan Aviation and its team members literally go the extra mile for customers.

Shipping parts to Mexico, Canada or anywhere in the world in the late 1970s was fairly unusual, too, because most of Duncan Aviation’s parts business involved Learjet aircraft, and Phil remembers that those parts shipped primarily in the United States.

There were notable exceptions, however, and in 1966, 10 years after Donald Duncan founded Duncan Aviation, Donald and Harry Barr partnered with Danish Pilot Captain Per Alkaersig to supply radio packages for Cessna aircraft that flew in the Scandinavian countries.

“I looked for a supplier of King radios and found Duncan Aviation. They would pick up the aircraft in Wichita and have it ready to ferry to Europe on a firm date,” says Per. “When I’d pick up the aircraft in Lincoln, I’d meet Donald and Robert Duncan and Harry Barr. What a great team! A handshake would close a deal.”

1985_piper.jpgWhen Duncan Aviation won the exclusive rights as master distributor for Piper (including Aztecs and Cubs) parts, Duncan Aviation began regularly shipping parts worldwide.

“Through our Piper parts agreement, I meet not only Piper dealers in Pennsylvania and Florida, but also made connections with companies in places like England, South Africa and Sweden,” says Phil. “We started dealing those parts in 1984, and we shipped quite a lot to Italy and Madagascar and to all of the little mom and pop shops around the world that needed parts for Pipers.”

Although Phil had been promoted from parts runner to sales around 1981, the worldwide parts distribution took off with the Piper deal, and in 1984, Duncan Aviation’s AvPac was born. Now known as Parts and Rotables, the annual sales of parts outside of the United States represents about 35 percent of all parts and rotables sales.

“Today, roughly one third of our team members work hours to accommodate our worldwide customers,” says Chris Gress, Manager of Parts and Rotables Sales.

Shirley Crouch and Tyler Stone work through the night so they can answer calls from customers in Australia and southeast Asia; Carol Hunt and Hannah Bodenstab support customers in South Africa; and Phil, Lance Tophoj, Jewell Chambers and Sandra Phelps support customers in Europe and South America. Sandra begins working at 4 a.m. so European customers can reach an actual person at the start of their business day.

In the early day, Phil sold Piper parts, and one of his first customers was Pilot John Egelykke who worked for a pump factory in Denmark called Grundfos. Per introduced John to Duncan Aviation in 1986, and John has been working with the company at its various locations ever since.

“The European aviation industry is a closely knit community. When you help customers locate parts or resolve problems, they remember you,” says Phil. “Over the years, in spite of the fact that some of my best customers have switched from one company to another, they remember that I helped, and they continue to call.”

John got to know Phil shortly after his first experience working with Duncan Aviation.

“Phil has been a great person to work with over the years. He has helped me a lot with AOG parts and a great number of quotes,” says John. “When Grundfos changed their aircraft management company to Air Alsie in 2011, I suggested taking the Falcon 2000 to Battle Creek for a C-check. I have always enjoyed working with Shawn Busby and Tom Burt, too.”

John stopped flying after 30 years and 14,000 hours as a pilot, and he now works as a Technical Advisor for Air Alsie. And he still recommends Duncan Aviation to his customers in large part because Phil took the time to forge a friendship on top of the business relationship the two men developed so many years ago.


2016 is a special year. It is Duncan Aviation’s 60th year of helping business aircraft operators be safe, efficient and productive. For six decades, customers have asked us for solutions and services. We are celebrating our 60 years by telling the stories about the people of Duncan Aviation who listened and took action.

Celebrate with us by subscribing to the Duncan Download blog, following us on Facebook and Twitter (@DuncanAviation) and visiting our anniversary website at www.DuncanAviation.aero/60.

Lori Johnson has been the Marketing Communications Manager for Duncan Aviation for more than 20 years. She enjoys working with the smart and passionate aviation experts at Duncan Aviation, helping them connect with and educate customers about important industry topics.  

Tags: Aircraft Parts, International Considerations, 60th Anniversary

It's A Wrap! AeroExpo 2016

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Wed, Mar 23, 2016 @ 09:09 AM

It was standing room only at AeroExpo 2016 as exhibitors filled booth space and show attendees walked the floor at the Toluca International Airport, March 16-18; hundreds of them, aviation professionals, operators, enthusiasts and students alike, came to Duncan Aviation's booth. Here's a pictorial recap of our time at 2016 AeroExpo

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We talked with many customers. 

IMG_0218_sm.jpgIMG_0232_sm.jpg

IMG_0227_sm.jpgIMG_0544_SM.jpg

Conducted a lot of business.

IMG_0538_SM.jpgIMG_0521_SM.jpgIMG_0533_SM.jpg

Gave away many gifts!

a.jpgb.jpgc.jpgd.jpg

Saw many impressive aircraft.

 e.jpgf.jpgg.jpgh.jpgIMG_0376_SM.jpg

We had a lot of fun. We hope you did too. See you next year. 

i.jpgDennis Kruse, Benjamin Viveros, Rodolfo Rodriguez, Gabriel Gonzalez, Joe Tulowitzki, Alfredo Garcia, Chris Gress

 

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions

Duncan Aviation is new, but not new, to the rotor wing industry

Posted by Karl Detweiler on Thu, Mar 17, 2016 @ 09:08 AM

This was our first year at HAI HELI-EXPO as an exhibitor. We had so much fun and met so many very important people; we will be back next year.

event-collage.jpg

OK…we admit it. We are HAI HELI-EXPO exhibitor newbies and should have been at this show years ago, but we are not rookies when it comes to aviation component services. In fact, we are one of the oldest, most established avionics and accessory service companies in the world.

  • Component shop technicians with over 1,944 years of experience
  • 40,000+ aviation component service and support capabilities
  • Authorized sales and factory service center for all the industry’s top-line brands including Rockwell Collins, Honeywell/Bendix King, Avidyne, NAT, Garmin, Chelton/Wulfsberg and JET/BF Goodrich/L3
  • We are the only authorized Universal Avionics Service Center in the United States. 
  • Helicopter avionics available for immediate exchange

AOG Services (800.568.6377)

We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for component AOG support. So whether you call us at 2 PM, or 2 AM, you will get a live person, experienced in component sales, repair, and overhaul support. We can schedule your exchange or repair anytime, day or night.

Component Repair / Overhaul Services

In the News

So you see. We may be new (to the HAI HELI-EXPO), but we’re not new. We’ve been around awhile, owned by the Duncan family since 1956. Few companies in the aviation industry, if any, are 60 years old and still operating under the same name. We have seen competitors come and go and companies bought and sold, some several times.

But, if you are looking for a company that has truly demonstrated stability, integrity, longevity; a company that will be here to support you not only this year, but for years to come, Duncan Aviation is the company you want to do business with.

Tags: Parts & Accessories, Avionics & Instruments, Conventions & Exhibitions

Aircraft Operators in Mexico Want Reliable Parts & Rotables Services

Posted by Lori Johnson on Tue, Mar 15, 2016 @ 09:00 AM


“Duncan Aviation has excellent aircraft parts availability, good prices and great service. We regularly use their parts and rotables services because their quality is awesome.” –Francisco Carrillo Peralta, Purchase Agent for ALE Service Center in Mexico.

With more than 15 years of experience as a maintenance and repair organization working in the Mexican market, ALE Service Center has three locations in Mexico and provides service for about 100 clients who operate Hawker-Beechcraft, Agusta, HondaJet and Bombardier aircraft.

“I can trust what Duncan Aviation tells me,” Francisco says. “If they say they have a part available, they do. And their ship times are accurate and fast.” No other aviation parts company can compete when it comes to customer value.

Chris Gress, Duncan Aviation Parts and Rotables Sales manager says it comes as no surprise when customers like Francisco keep coming back. “Duncan Aviation’s reputation in providing quality aircraft parts is widely known throughout the aviation industry. Our repair capabilities are top-quality and our prices are always a fair value. Anyone who has ever purchased an aircraft part that is tagged with a Duncan Aviation 8130 knows that they are getting a part that will be reliable with no warranty or failure issues.” 

la_foto_7.jpgChris will be at AeroExpo at the Toluca International Airport March 16-18. Stop by booth #20 to talk with him and other Duncan Aviation representatives.

Duncan Aviation’s international parts sales experience includes parts and rotables with completed and accurate 8130 paperwork, the management of repairs and overhauls sent to the U.S. to be serviced both by Duncan Aviation and other FAA approved U.S. Repair Stations; the consolidation of return shipments of freshly serviced components back to countries all over the world; and the safe shipment of hazardous material from the U.S. to countries around the world while meeting all regulatory compliance.

Just call +1 402.475.4125 to get instant service, 24/7/365, including holidays, nights and weekends. Or visit Duncan Aviation’s There’s no need to make dozens of calls and scour the internet looking for a part or service. Duncan Aviation has the component solutions you require and will quickly fulfill those needs.

To see more, check out our Parts Search at www.DuncanAviation.aero/parts. You can also download our mobile parts app to search from your phone. Just visit www.DuncanAviation.aero/apps.

Tags: Parts & Accessories, Aircraft Parts

An Interior For The Albatross

Posted by Kate Dolan on Fri, Mar 04, 2016 @ 01:15 PM

N51ZD8807_Custom.jpgIn April 2015, the 61-year-old amphibious aircraft landed at Duncan Aviation’s Lincoln, Nebraska, facility to get fitted with its new interior—or, more accurately, an interior.

In addition to installing sound-dampening materials, the production team, following the plans of the owner’s (Joe Duke) designer, Bruce Shoemaker of SDesign.aero, put in numerous passenger accommodations. The crew built two galleys, a lav and interior panels and installed LEDs, USB plugs, dome and task lighting and new gaspers. They updated the cockpit with side ledges and a workstation.

“It’s evident that everyone here at Duncan Aviation cares. The attention to detail is unmatched,” says Joe. Gesturing toward the galley, he adds, “Look at the quality of the cabinetry, and they were difficult to build.”

Our time-lapse video captures the progression from the pristine but empty cabin and cockpit to the newly completed aircraft interior, designed to invoke the style and materials used in the period in which the Albatross was produced.

Watch Video Now

Tags: Interior Refurbishment, Videos

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