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Air Cadets grounded?

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Air Cadets grounded?

Old 9th Jan 2017, 17:33
  #3141 (permalink)  
 
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Arc and others,

I'd like to come back once again, just to address one or two points that seem to be emerging.

There seems to be a feeling that the cause of the problem is the new MAA regulations. Shaft109 seems to infer that any a/c type would be grounded. (I sincerely apologise if I've drawn the wrong conclusion here).

There has also been a reappearance of the view that the problems were, at least in part, due to contractorisation of the maintenance of the aircraft.

In my view, as I've said before, the problem is not the MAA regs. While they are not well structured and are hard to navigate, getting a fleet of utterly basic aircraft past them should have been a walk in the park. It's important to note the fact that the problems found in early 2014 must have built up well before the MAA regs were issued in 2010. The problem is that the MoD and the RAF have been unable to execute basic airworthiness management functions (e.g. recording of repairs) in accordance with their own (pre-MAA) regs.

As to contractorisation, if the RAF had gone for a wood and canvas aircraft, then going out to contract would have been a sensible move as the mainstream RAF wound down its own trade skills base. (Declaration - my late father was one of the RN's last people qualified to carry out repairs to wooden airframes - and that was in the mid 60s). As I've posted before, the problem doesn't lay with contractorisation, but rather with an apparent inability to properly manage and supervise the contracted activity. Honestly, it's really not rocket science. The fault here lies with the commercial and engineering personnel in MoD and the RAF whose job it was to make sure that they were getting what they'd paid for to the quality standards required.

Let me reinforce this, using my own direct experience. If a contractor were carrying out repairs to aircraft in my fleet, I would be getting my QA section to check that the people doing it were properly qualified, that they were using the right materials and processes, and that the job was being properly recorded. I'd also have got the first repairs thoroughly inspected, and had further checks carried out on a regular basis. This is not theory, or being wise after the event. This is what engineers did in real life where I served.

Blaming 'the MAA regs' or 'contractors' is understandable, but in my view, wrong. It lets those truly accountable off the hook. They need to stay on the hook, in plain view, and wriggle. Uncomfortably.

Best Regards as ever to those sorting out the wreckage,

Engines
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Old 9th Jan 2017, 17:44
  #3142 (permalink)  
 
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K13

Sorry I might not have been clear in my point -

Even if we'd have bought K13's instead of the Viking back in the 1990's the same paperwork situation would predate the MAA and the aircraft would be in the same state now.

i.e grounded
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Old 9th Jan 2017, 17:58
  #3143 (permalink)  
 
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Shaft,

Thank you for clarifying and my apologies for making 2 plus 2 equal 5.

Your analysis is, in my view, spot on.

Engines
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Old 9th Jan 2017, 18:07
  #3144 (permalink)  
 
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E

Normally I'd be in smug mode at getting something right but given this saga the only words I come up with are-

Sad

Disappointed.

Engines PM sent
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Old 9th Jan 2017, 18:35
  #3145 (permalink)  
 
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Sorry I might not have been clear in my point -

Even if we'd have bought K13's instead of the Viking back in the 1990's the same paperwork situation would predate the MAA and the aircraft would be in the same state now.
And they would be trying to manage this issue:

http://www.lightaircraftassociation....hiness/042.pdf

AFAIK the fleet at Lasham are OK as they were built to order using a different glue.
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Old 10th Jan 2017, 09:30
  #3146 (permalink)  
 
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Actually I think the glue issue would have been identified very quickly in the 'old' MGSP supervised environment. The regular 1st and 2nd Line servicing and regular deep servicing cycles would have spotted it. Since most aircraft never went more than 5 years between a full recover of all components. In addition the Tradesmen knew what they were looking for and also how to fix it (and document it). Unless you had seen the MGSP operation you would not believe just how capable and versatile (AKA Professional) they were...............

Arc
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Old 10th Jan 2017, 12:57
  #3147 (permalink)  
 
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Well said "Engines"

Absolutely spot on correct Engines, the problem here was , as you said, ab initio and continued until the pause, irrespective of whether it was RAF Direct labour, or contractors.


Sadly we don't appear to have any MP's who can penetrate the smokescreen and we also have HQAC Commandant spouting off about what a record year 2016 has been.


The problem isn't fixed yet, by a long way and I fear the story is going to continue, and there may even be some further shockers to come.............watch this space !
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Old 10th Jan 2017, 15:51
  #3148 (permalink)  
 
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Best Regards as ever to those sorting out the wreckage
I echo this sentiment but really do wonder if MoD has anyone left who knows how to sort a minor problem like this out! Almost 3 years and barely a step forward.
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Old 10th Jan 2017, 18:35
  #3149 (permalink)  
 
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With reference to the MAA and other aircraft types; the two Martin Baker operated but MoD/Qinetiq owned Meteor T7's were grounded for over four years over airworthiness issues.
They are now fully Qinetiq owned and are on the civilian G- register for MB use.
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Old 10th Jan 2017, 22:17
  #3150 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by pr00ne View Post
With reference to the MAA and other aircraft types; the two Martin Baker operated but MoD/Qinetiq owned Meteor T7's were grounded for over four years over airworthiness issues.
They are now fully Qinetiq owned and are on the civilian G- register for MB use.
The 2 Meteors were QinetiQ owned from the formation of QinetiQ. They were sold to MB last year by QinetiQ and transferred to the civil register.
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Old 11th Jan 2017, 07:38
  #3151 (permalink)  
 
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Lynxman,
Typo, I meant to write MB in last line.

The original point remains though, the MAA "paused" them for four years during which no trials were possible as they were grounded.
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Old 11th Jan 2017, 08:14
  #3152 (permalink)  
 
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Actually I think the glue issue would have been identified very quickly in the 'old' MGSP supervised environment
Maybe, maybe not. Could it have developed in the 5 years between recovers? The BGA inspection regime needs holes cut in various places which I doubt they would have done, and back in 2004 when the accident occurred there were many more inspectors familiar with wood gliders and their foibles.

I found the accident report:

https://members.gliding.co.uk/wp-con...7-2004-BGA.pdf
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Old 11th Jan 2017, 09:29
  #3153 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Arclite01 View Post
Actually I think the glue issue would have been identified very quickly in the 'old' MGSP supervised environment. The regular 1st and 2nd Line servicing and regular deep servicing cycles would have spotted it. Since most aircraft never went more than 5 years between a full recover of all components. In addition the Tradesmen knew what they were looking for and also how to fix it (and document it). Unless you had seen the MGSP operation you would not believe just how capable and versatile (AKA Professional) they were...............

Arc
I agree. In my experience at 613, MGSP were an excellent bunch of guys who would never take an aircraft off line for longer than necessary and would always add an extra check in when visiting even if it wasn't really due.
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Old 14th Jan 2017, 09:39
  #3154 (permalink)  
 
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Why sooooooo long to get the show back on the road?

No club or private owner would dither like this - people would be sacked if this were a commercial operation.

Vigilant and Viking are as simple as it's possible to get - their composite design is now 30 years old so the expertise exists to check and fix them - so I can't buy the argument they are more complex than they look.

Why?
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Old 15th Jan 2017, 08:56
  #3155 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Shaft109 View Post
Why sooooooo long to get the show back on the road?

No club or private owner would dither like this - people would be sacked if this were a commercial operation.

Vigilant and Viking are as simple as it's possible to get - their composite design is now 30 years old so the expertise exists to check and fix them - so I can't buy the argument they are more complex than they look.

Why?
But they are high performance types which Air Cadets don't need; they just need an aircraft to teach cadets to safely do a solo circuit in the shortest time. Don't forget, with Vigilants, the trainees weren't even taught how to taxy them, the instuctor would line it up on the runway then jump out and the cadet would just take off, fly a circuit and land.
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Old 15th Jan 2017, 09:05
  #3156 (permalink)  
 
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Really? How did they get off the runway afterwards?
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Old 15th Jan 2017, 09:07
  #3157 (permalink)  
 
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Chevron, you may not have taught cadets to taxy the Vigilant but at the VGS I was at they did, and quite early in the process too. Afterall the hardest thing to do in a Vigilant was to taxy it in a straight line and as a take-off and landing start or finish that way the ability to taxy was an important skill to master.
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Old 15th Jan 2017, 09:35
  #3158 (permalink)  
 
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Don't forget, with Vigilants, the trainees weren't even taught how to taxy them, the instuctor would line it up on the runway then jump out and the cadet would just take off, fly a circuit and land.
WRONG ! Where on earth did you get that from? Long before a first solo, the Cadet WAS taught how to taxi.


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Old 15th Jan 2017, 13:00
  #3159 (permalink)  
 
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But they are high performance types which Air Cadets don't need; they just need an aircraft to teach cadets to safely do a solo circuit in the shortest time. Don't forget, with Vigilants, the trainees weren't even taught how to taxy them, the instructor would line it up on the runway then jump out and the cadet would just take off, fly a circuit and land.
Utter c0ck. Exercise 5- Effects of Controls 2, Engine Start and Taxiing. And at my old sqn, the cadet had to deal with radio calls and a busy GA circuit in a very pretty part of the world with an awful lot of fair-weather flyers and visitors, so SA had to be good too.
Still used to get about a 50% solo rate in under 10hrs, though.
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Old 15th Jan 2017, 17:11
  #3160 (permalink)  
 
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But they are high performance types which Air Cadets don't need
The Vikings are certainly NOT high-performance. Nor is the paperwork.
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