The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

Creative Reconfiguration Frees Space On Business Aircraft

Posted by Kate Dolan on Tue, Nov 28, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

lav.jpgThe Duncan Aviation Senior Completions Designer and Team Leader Mary Lee and Multi Media Illustrator Ken Reita worked together to find a way to give passengers more headroom in the lavatory of a Challenger 650.

Using Mary’s designs and Ken’s 2D drawings, team members from the Interior, Cabinet, and Fabrication Shops extended the size of the vanity and shifted the toilet, making both more accessible to the business aircraft passengers.

In order to shift the vanity, it had to be resized, and that meant the original sink no longer fit. Team members in Duncan Aviation’s Fabrications Shop designed and machine-crafted a bigger sink from a solid piece of aluminum, where it’s now an eye-catching addition to the sleek new vanity.

Duncan Aviation has multi-shop capabilities, with experts who collaborate to conceive of, design, and craft nearly anything an aircraft operator needs. With experienced in-house engineers and certification experts, Duncan Aviation can also shorten downtimes by producing design data and STCs (Supplemental Type Certificates) when necessary.


Lavatory: Before and After

The Engineering and Certification department developed an STC for the redesigned lavatory, and we’ve now completed four redesigns. The aircraft were completed in pairs: The first two were completed and delivered, and then the second two arrived for the redesign.

“Because our Interior Shops had already completed two, they were able to deliver the second two Challenger 650s early,” says Project Manager Darrell Miller.

In this video watch the Dufncan Aviation fabrication shop design and machine a bigger, sleek new sink out of a solid piece of aluminum so it would fit in the redesigned vanity.

Tags: Interior Refurbishment, Challenger

Tiny Grains Of Rice Cause Big Problems

Posted by Kate Dolan on Thu, Nov 02, 2017 @ 09:24 AM

rice.gifNo detail, no matter how small, escapes the notice of Duncan Aviation team members. Earlier this year, a long-time customer from Jakarta, Indonesia, arrived with his company’s Challenger 604. To the casual observer, a custom-designed sink strainer is no big deal, but it was critical to Senior Financial Advisor for Air Pacific, Muliawan Sutanto, and the rest of the flight crew.

Muliawan explained that they eat a lot of meals with rice, and despite how carefully the attendant rinsed the dishes, tiny grains of rice still slipped down the drain, and the resulting clogs were costly in terms of time and money.

A clogged drain renders the sink unusable, and clearing the drain requires that the company put down the aircraft. As nearly everyone in aviation knows, putting down an business aircraft for unscheduled maintenance is costly in terms of lost flying time, and unclogging a drain is surprisingly expensive.

“Aircraft sinks have small strainers that cover only the drain, and they get blocked pretty quickly,” says Duncan Aviation Cabinet Shop Team Leader Matt Beaudette. “When those little strainers are blocked, the sink backs up so water won’t drain, but when you lift out the strainer to clean it off, all of those little food particles go down the drain, which eventually clogs it.”


Matt researched larger strainers and realized a strainer that fits inside the sink would trap the small grains of rice while still allowing water to drain. The problem was strainers that fit inside aircraft sinks don’t exist, so he mentioned to problem to Fabrication Shop Team Leader Bryan Hart. 

Bryan came up with a workable design, and he and his team crafted a custom strainer to fit inside the Challenger’s sink.

“We’re thrilled with the strainer, and it’ll more than pay for itself by preventing even one clogged drain,” says Muliawan. “It fits inside the sink, traps the food particles, and lifts out easily so the attendant can clean it.”

The Fall Duncan Debrief is now online. Download your copy now. 

Fall 2017 Duncan Debrief Download Now

Tags: Interior Refurbishment, Challenger

Who's Looking at Your Legs!

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Thu, Jul 27, 2017 @ 11:45 AM

Aircraft landing gear overhaul is often viewed as a behind-the-scenes inspection and scheduled alongside, but taking a backseat to, a major airframe inspection. However, it can have a huge impact on the entire project's schedule if the landing gear restoration runs into major squawks. Because an aircraft can't go anywhere without its legs.

XOJET is a leader in private jet travel that is personal, flexible, and on-demand. Headquartered in Brisbane, California, the company operates a fleet that includes Bombardier Challenger 300 and Cessna Citation X aircraft. Although XOJET has only been in business since 2006, this modern alternative to fractional ownership is definitely in demand.

According to Carlos Partida, Senior Maintenance Planner at XOJET, the company’s fleet flies 40% more flight hours per aircraft per year than their closest Part 135 competitor. "Our fleet is smaller by comparison to our competitors," says Carlos. "Making sure the aircraft are available as much as possible is one of my top priorities." Needless to say, that makes downtime very important. And if you ask Carlos, no one manages downtime better than Duncan Aviation.

Work Completed Quickly

Since 2014, Carlos has been sending all of XOJET’s Citation X oleo sets to Duncan Aviation for inspection. They are nearly always returned to service and headed back to XOJET within a week. Prior to using Duncan Aviation, Carlos was used to waiting months. "It takes Duncan Aviation a week, including shipping, to do something that previously took two months for completion."

Of course, Citation X oleos are not the only gear Duncan Aviation services for XOJET. Our Accessory shop regularly has a complete set of the fleet’s Challenger 300 gear in the shop for 96-month inspections.

Switching to Duncan Aviation was not only a time saver, Carlos says. It has had a positive impact on XOJET’s bottom line. "When our aircraft are not flying, they are not producing revenue." 

Work Completed Well

Carlos also expresses his appreciation for the level of customer service he has received from everyone at Duncan Aviation. "They always deliver the highest in quality work at the best possible downtime savings, served up with a level of customer service that is first rate. Everyone on the Duncan Aviation team is so willing to accommodate all of my requirements. I can’t speak highly enough about the customer service," he says.


Chris Fields

Chris Fields is a Duncan Aviation Master Technician working on the landing gear team since 2008. He knows a thing or two about landing gear and he knows a lot about the Challenger 300 and Citation X gear that come off of XOJET aircraft.

When XOJET sends their gear sets to Duncan Aviation, Chris often takes the lead, especially when it comes to the Citation X main gear oleo doc inspections.

"XOJET takes great care of their gear. They schedule inspections on time and everything is well-documented," says Chris. "We see several sets of oleos every year and typically will have them completed and returned within four days."

This story was recently published in the Spring 2017 Duncan Debrief magazine. Follow the link below to find more stories like this or subscribe to receive your own copy. 

READ NOW Spring 2017 Duncan Debrief Magazine

Tags: Cessna, Parts & Accessories, Landing Gear, Challenger

Duncan Aviation Releases March Duncan Intelligence

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Thu, Mar 09, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

Have you heard about the Honeywell HTF7500E Stator Vane Seal Inspection Program? How about the cause behind those intermittent software failures on your Avidyne EX-500 MFD? 

No? Then you haven't read the March issue of the Duncan Intelligence. 

 March Duncan Intelligence

Falcon 7X Flap Rigging Precautions

 Caution is needed when rigging the flaps on a Dassaut Falcon 7X aircraft.

ADS-B Solution for Bombardier Challenger 800/850 SE Aircraft

 This was an industry-first installation in the United States and was performed in the customer’s hangar.

Honeywell HTF7500E Stator Vane Seal Inspection Program

 This inspection program is applicable to the HTF750E model engine.

Why Is My Avidyne EX-500 MFD Experiencing Intermittent Software Failures?

 Completing a proper shutdown every time will prevent this.

Got a crack in your APU Exhaust Support? Don’t Replace It. Repair It.

 Duncan Aviation has AWS D17.1 certified welders and inspectors on-site, all capable of welding all types of materials for aerospace applications.

The NBAA Tech Committee Wants To Hear From You

Progress can only be accomplished if we have regular interaction with and feedback from you, the Citation operator.

Get The Duncan Intelligence In Your In-box

The Duncan Intelligence is a free, technical newsletter for business aircraft owners and operators. Written in-house by Duncan Aviation's technical representatives, each edition includes technical tips and advice on topics and trends in business aviation. It is a free, monthly e-mail subscription for aviation enthusiasts around the world.

Duncan Intelligence Subscribe Now

Tags: Avionics & Instruments, Engine Maintenance, ADS-B, Falcon, Challenger

An Industry First: STC for CPDLC/FANS Systems on a Challenger 601 3A/3R

Posted by Mark Francetic on Wed, Jan 27, 2016 @ 01:58 PM

FANS.jpgDuncan Aviation recently received Supplemental Type Certification (STC) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for an industry-first Controller Pilot Data Link Communications/Future Air Navigation System (CPDLC/FANS) 1/A+ installation.

The installation is an affordable solution that features the upgraded NZ-2000 Honeywell Flight Management System (FMS) that integrates with current Challenger 601 3A/3R Original Equipment Manager (OEM) flight decks.

We believe our installation is unique to the industry being a completely integrated Honeywell FMS solution for the Challenger 601.This upgraded Honeywell FMS satisfies all current NextGen mandates for FANS/CPDLC, and is an integral part of our ADS-B OUT, and WAAS LPV programs. This solution provides Challenger 601 operators with a cost effective solution to meet the coming mandates.

The CPDLC/FANS upgrade also demonstrates Duncan Aviation’s commitment to its customers to keep their aircraft flying in airspace around the world. The Honeywell system integrates with current Challenger 601 3A/3R flight decks and is forward-fit compatible with future mandates.

We’re committed to offering our customers cutting-edge solutions. This Honeywell system is designed to accommodate future mandates we may see for United-States airspace. We’re anticipating mandates for ADS-B IN and an updated version of Link2000 and CPDLC in the United States. Right now, these systems are used primarily when flying over water and through EU airspace, but when future mandates are issued for U.S. airspace, this Honeywell system will already be ready for the upgraded equipment.

For more information about this unique solution, visit for program details.

For more information about NextGen requirements and solutions, please visit Duncan Aviation’s NextGen page at

Mark Francetic is Duncan Aviation's Regional Avionics Sales Manager.He specializes in educating business aviation operators about NextGen Mandates by hosting Free seminars across the United States. 


Tags: Challenger, NextGen, FANS 1A

Challenger! Learjet! King Air! Oh My! Gear Sets Are Landing at Duncan Aviation

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Thu, Feb 05, 2015 @ 12:16 PM

Landing-gear-shop-fullA near-record number of landing gear sets and components are in-house at Duncan Aviation’s accessories shop in Lincoln, NE.

According to Tony Curtis, landing gear team leader, seven full sets of landing gear and a “whole slew” of individual components, such as struts and oleos, have filled the shop and kept the schedule very busy. All shifts are working tirelessly overhauling or inspecting gear sets and components from Challenger 300, Challenger 604, Challenger 601, Learjet and King Air aircraft.

Although three sets have been completed and already shipped back to operators, Jon Hein, accessories service sales rep, says the workload doesn’t appear to be letting up anytime soon. “Over the next several weeks, many more sets and component parts are scheduled to arrive.”

Because an aircraft can’t go anywhere without its legs, Duncan Aviation has invested heavily in the landing gear customer more than doubling its Accessories shop area, gaining approximately 6,300 square feet of service area, doubling its work benches and adding new tooling and in-house capabilities, including an overhead crane and a new paint booth with curing room.

In 2014, they acquired the capabilities to completely overhaul and repair landing gear for both commercial and business Embraer aircraft. With the necessary technical data, maintenance manuals and aircraft landing gear parts, Duncan Aviation’s Accessories Services has received and successfully overhauled two sets of Embraer gear to comply with the 144-month landing gear restoration.

Take a moment and watch this before and after ERJ-145 overhaul video.



Tags: Parts & Accessories, Learjet, Landing Gear, Challenger

Duncan Aviation Receives Award for the Second Consecutive Year

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Oct 23, 2013 @ 07:00 PM

Contributed by Kaela Paseka, graphic design lead

Bombardier ASF Award 2013(2)

L to R: Bombardier Aerospace Vice President, Aircraft Service Centers, Stan Younger, Duncan Aviation’s John Biever, Aaron Hilkemann, Rod Christensen—Manager Airframe Service and Bombardier’s Director, Authorized Service Facilities, Chris Milligan.

On Wednesday during the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Meeting and Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada, Duncan Aviation was again recognized by Bombardier as a top authorized service facility for its support of Bombardier customers. Judged on a set of criteria that included quality, compliance, customer satisfaction and customer influence, Duncan Aviation’s Battle Creek, MI, facility was named the winner of the North America category of the 2013 Bombardier Authorized Service Facility Excellence Awards.

Bombardier Aerospace Vice President, Aircraft Service Centers, Stan Younger spoke to the award winners at a private ceremony at NBAA. “It is our ASFs attention to quality and their dedication in providing customers world-class service and support that is being recognized today. Each winner demonstrates a commitment to putting customers first,” said Younger.  

Duncan Aviation President Aaron Hilkemann and John Biever, Vice President Airframe Services in Battle Creek, Michigan, accepted the award from Stan Younger and Chris Milligan, Director, Authorized Service Facilities for Bombardier.

“We enjoy representing Bombardier and their products in supporting of our mutual customers. It is a great mutually beneficial partnership that has worked for many years,” says John Biever.

More than 30 Duncan Aviation representatives are attending NBAA this year, representing several Duncan Aviation services, including airframe and engine servicespaint and interior modificationsavionics and parts support and aircraft sales and acquisitions.

Stop by the Duncan Aviation NBAA booth #C8543 to congratulate Aaron, John and the rest of the Duncan Aviation team.

Kaela Paseka is Duncan Aviation's Marketing Graphic Design Lead, and is currently attending NBAA 2013 at Duncan Aviation booth #C8543. She began her career in aviation in 2006.

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions, Announcements, Learjet, Challenger

Challenger Landing Gear Hidden Corrosion

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 @ 08:02 AM

Contributed by Jerry Cable, Accessory Tech Rep

Challenger landing gear requires a detailed inspection at 60 months for the 600 and 601 and 96-months for the 604 and 605. It must then undergo a 120-month restoration for the 600 and 601 and 192 month for the 604/605.

The reason for these inspections is to check for cracks, wear and corrosion. Years of water, dirt, salt air, fluid and various other electrolytes have taken their toll. The gear is very susceptible to corrosion and even though steps may have been taken to lessen the effects, some corrosion still forms.

Corrosion is normally found throughout the gear but can often be repaired using standard repair schemes available in the CMM or through engineering concessions. Sometimes, however, the corrosion has exceeded the limits of those repair tolerances.

Some of the more severe corrosion found during these inspections is detailed in the following photographs.

Challenger MLG Trailing Link

MLG Trailing Link CL600/601

  • Axle Bore corrosion found in 35% of the restorations we perform.*

Challenger MLG Side Strut Pin

MLG Side Strut Pin CL600/601

  • Corrosion on OD radius found in 50% of restorations.*

Challenger MLG Hinge Pin

MLG Hinge Pin CL600/601

  • Corrosion on the ID mating with brake line swivels found in 70% of the restorations.*

Challenger MLG Oleo Pin

MLG Oleo Pin CL600/601

  • Corrosion on the ID found in 65% of the overhauls.*

Challenger MLG Oleo Cylinder

MLG Oleo Cylinder CL600/601

  • ID corrosion found in 50% of the restorations.*

Challenger NLG Main Fitting

NLG Main Fitting CL600/601

  • Corrosion under steering sleeve found in 50% of restorations.*

Challenger NLG Plunger Tube

NLG Plunger Tube CL600/601

  • Corrosion, lower band mating with axle found on 75% of restorations.*

NLG Axle Barrel CL600/601

  • Corrosion mating with plunger tube found on 75% of restorations.*

Challenger NLG Stering Cuff

NLG Steering Cuff CL600/601

  • Corrosion in the ID Bore found in 60% of restorations.*

Challenger NLG Axle Transverse Bore

NLG Axle Transverse Bore CL600/601

  • Corrosion found on 50% of the restorations.*

Challenger NLG Steering Rack

NLG Steering Rack CL600/601

  • Tooth damage going to caster mode found during 90% of restorations.*

Challenger MLG Side Strut Rod End

MLG Side Strut Rod End CL600/601

  • Bearing bore corrosion found in 85% of the restorations.*

Challenger MLG Side Strut

MLG Side Strut CL600/601

  •  Bearing bore corrosion found in 85% of the restorations.*

*Percentages are based on Duncan Aviation data.

Jerry Cable is an Accessories Tech Rep located at Duncan Aviation’s Lincoln, Nebr., facility. He is a landing gear and accessory components and systems specialist. His aviation career began in 1991.

Tags: Parts & Accessories, Landing Gear, Challenger

Do Not Overlook the Adel Clamps (MS21919)

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Feb 06, 2013 @ 09:01 AM

Contributed by Scott Shefke, Airframe Tech Rep

Adel Clamps

Error on the side of replacing when you have suspicions about an Adel Clamp (MS21919) on your business aircraft.

The wires that run throughout the aircraft and engine compartment need to be secured into bundles to prevent interfering with moving parts or chafing. During visual inspections, work cards will state to verify routing of electrical wiring, wiring harnesses, fuel lines, hydraulic lines and oxygen lines.

Adel Clamps, AKA MS21919 aircraft clamps, are key components used in line support, vibration dampening and maintaining proper clearance for lines or harnesses running throughout the aircraft structure. The Adel Clamp is a metal band constructed from aluminum, corrosion-resistant steel and low-carbon steel, covered by a white rubber lining or cushion made from silicone. Older Adel Clamps made from low-carbon steel had different colored cushions depending on what materials they were constructed from: silicone (red), ethylene propylene (purple), chloroprene cushion (black).

A visual inspection, no matter how trivial, needs to include the inspection of these clamps; and when necessary they need to be replaced. These cushions are exposed to heat, vibration, ozone and a variety of petroleum-based and synthetic-based fluids. Over the years, inspections have found cushions torn or missing, exposing the metal bands. In cases where the cushion is made from Teflon polyamide glass, dust gathered around the hardware or in the immediate vicinity indicates wear. These should be replaced.

We have found conditions were the cushion’s wrapping edge is in good condition, however, a more detailed examination reveals the cushion has worn away on the inside of the band, creating a bare-band-to-line or -wire condition.

When Adel clamps fail in these conditions, it has been noted on fuel systems to cause non-designed fuel migration, or a low fuel pressure situation. In hydraulic lines, Adel Clamp bands have been found rubbing through hydraulic system lines resulting in a loss of hydraulic quantity. Intermittent electrical faults have lead technicians to find an Adel clamp cutting into an electrical harness.

The MS21919 aircraft clamp is used safely by many aircraft OEMs with very little trouble. However, a skilled technician will be looking closely at these clamps and know that their replacement is not trivial nor being too picky. The repair costs of the many systems they support vastly outweighs the cost of this simple preventive maintenance approach.

Duncan Aviation has teams of experienced airframe mechanics provide service for almost every airframe maintenance event, scheduled or unscheduled. Emergency AOG service is available through our mobile Rapid Response teams. Technical support is available 24 / 7. We are authorized by several aircraft OEMs and foreign agencies around the world.

Scott Shefke is an Airframe Tech Rep located at Duncan Aviation’s Lincoln, Nebr., facility, specializing in the Challenger airframe. He sits on the OEM Advisory Committee reviewing fleet and maintenance issues reported by operators working to improve the Challenger aircraft. His aviation career began in 1991.

Tags: Airframe Maintenance, Challenger

How to Avoid Challenger 600 Epoxy Ramp Removal Damage

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Fri, Aug 03, 2012 @ 03:02 PM

Submitted by Scott Shefke, Airframe Tech Rep

Challenger 600 Door Epoxy Ramp Removal

Duncan Aviation Maintenance Tech using the Aero 40 Series dry ice blasting machine.

Bombardier has released Service Bulletin (SB) for all Challenger 600 model aircraft. SB ATA 55-11 titled "SPECIAL CHECK/MODIFICATION – PASSENGER DOOR –EPOXY RAMP REMOVAL AND CORROSION PREVENTION."

According to the SB ATA 55-11:

There have been several reports of corrosion in the lower structural elements of the passenger door. It was determined that the epoxy ramp installed to prevent water accumulation could deteriorate with time and retain moisture. The purpose of this Service Bulletin is to remove the epoxy ramp to prevent further corrosion, add additional draining holes and modify the door structure to allow access to facilitate scheduled inspections.

Avoiding Collateral Damage

To help support our customers in performing this SB, all three of Duncan Aviation’s maintenance facilities (Lincoln, Nebr.; Battle Creek, Mich. and Provo, Utah) have obtained a cold jet Aero 40 Series dry ice blasting machine. This dry ice blasting machine is integral in removing the epoxy ramp in an efficient manner while ensuring no collateral damage to existing door structure occurs.

Technicians at all locations have been properly trained by Cold Jet, the blasting machine’s OEM. Duncan Aviation has successfully completed this SB in-the-field and have several more in-the-field events scheduled through the remainder of 2012.

For more information about the Aero 40 Series dry ice blasting machine and to schedule the completion of this SB, please contact Duncan Aviation’s Airframe Service Sales.

Scott Shefke serves as an Airframe Technical Representative at Duncan Aviation's full-service facility in Lincoln, Nebr., specializing in Challenger, Global and Learjet aircraft. His aviation career began in 1991.

Tags: Airframe Maintenance, Challenger, airframe corrosion


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