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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Thundershowers, Inspections, and Paint

We're having thundershowers today. More showers than thunder so far, but the occasional thunder rumble has reverberated through the hangar.

The 182 is back up on floor jacks for Mike to inspect behind landing gear bushings.

Tim continues the annual inspection GCI's Cessna 310.

Ian instructs Andy in painting technique as Scott shoots primer on one of the 206 wings.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Plugging Away and Flying Away

Plugging Away
Downstairs, the guys continue to plug away in the hangar:

  • Gospel Carrier International's Cessna 310 is opened up for inspection, the oil drained from the engines, and the oil filters inspected.
One of the Cessna 310's engines.

  • The horizontal stabilizer has been re-covered with fabric and reinstalled on the locally owned Taylorcraft.
Andy fabricates a bushing for the Taylorcraft horizontal stabilizer.

  • The leading edge repair is nearly completed on the one wing of the Honduran 206.
Paul and Scott finish riveting the repair in place.

Flying Away
The the evangelistic team (from mainland China) traveling with Gospel Carrier International arrived last night from Texas and left this afternoon to continue their outreach to Chinese speakers in America.

The evangelistic team departs Coshocton in GCI's King Air.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Newly Approved Candidates & GCI Crusade

Jeremiah & Briana Are Accepted For Service
Last week's candidate evaluation went very well and resulted in Jeremiah and Briana being accepted for apprenticeship. After three days of evaluation and two days of orientation, they headed back home to Colorado Friday evening ready to raise the support necessary to start service.

Jeremiah & Briana during orientation.

Gospel Carrier 310 Annual Inspection And Evangelistic Crusade
GCI's Cessna 310 was moved from Hangar C up to Hangar A this morning in preparation to undergo its annual inspection.

Tim moves the 310 from Hangar C to Hangar A.

Tim and Dave then position the 310 in Hangar A.

Just as an update, GCI is flying their King Air 200 in to Coshocton this evening on the return leg of an evangelistic outreach across the United States. Willams Chang, GCI's pastor/pilot, is stopping in town for an overnight with his team of Chinese pastors and evangelists before flying into Virgina for additional outreach. The team was most recently in Texas conducting evangelistic events.

It's a blessing to be able to serve as a partner in GCI's ministry to the Chinese speaking people in America through providing labor-free maintenance on their three airplanes. Thank you for making it possible through your gifts and prayers!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Candidate and Hangar Update

The cold and wet weather continues as does Jeremiah and Briana's candidate evaluation and work on the Moody 182.

Gertjan test fits an avionics mount in the tail cone of the 182.

Jeremiah and Mike perform maintenance on a wheel and tire assemblies from the 182.

The evaluation process isn't all work however. While Jeremiah has served in the hangar during the day, Briana and Asher have interacted with the MMS ladies and children. In the evenings they've been hosted for meals by various staff members. Some houses are more fun than others as Dennis & Mary have horses to enjoy!

Briana, Asher, and Jeremiah enjoy a few moments with "Spirit" Dennis & Mary's young colt last evening.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Candate Evaluation

This week we're conducting a candidate evaluation. Jeremiah and Briana are here from Colorado after passing the written application process for apprenticeship. After application, the final step is for the candidate to come to MMS, work in our hangar for three days, and interact socially with our families in the evenings. Should all go well, and they successfully complete the selection committee interview, their two day orientation for support raising would begin.

Jeremiah works under Ian's supervision.

It's an intense time for the candidate and it's a serious time for the mission as we work to discern the candidate and candidate's family's suitability for service with our ministry. Please pray for MMS and for Jeremiah and Briana this week as we seek the Lord's will for their future.

Of course work continues in the rest of the hangar while the evaluation is underway.

Honduran 206
Scott and Paul are back on the leading edge repair on the Honduran 206.

Moody 182
Gertjan runs wire to relocate instruments in the soon to be built instrument panel.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Cessna 210 Returns to Service!

The guys finished all the maintenance on the Cessna 210, completed all the paperwork, and returned it to the owner to return to service this afternoon. The Cessna 210 is a high-performance, single engine airplane with retractable landing gear.

I hear the owner/operator and taxiing the aircraft back to the hangar right now after an hour's test flight. He plans to depart Coshocton tomorrow morning. Here's a snapshot of the aircraft leaving on its test flight.

It's always an exciting moment when an airplane returns to the sky.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Finishing the 210 and Moving Ahead With The 182

Mike continues his work wiring the navigation/communication stack for the Moody 182. On Monday, Mike started with a single red wire. Today he has a few more wires in place with more soon to be in place.

Mike at work wiring the nav/com stack.

The Cessna 210 is off the jacks, back on its wheels, cowled up, and having the last few fairings installed and inspected. It's all over but the paperwork and a few final checks before being signed-off as airworthy. Ian and his team have done a good job getting this airplane "in and out" in a professional, timely way. The project has provided good experience and learning opportunities for Gertjan, Andy, Paul, and Scott.

Buttoning-up the 210.

We're thankful for the airplane owner entrusting us with his airplane and thankful for your gifts and prayers which enable us to minister in such a unique way.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The 210 Comes Back Together

While the rain falls outside, work continues on the 210 inside Hangar A. The guys are in the process of putting the aircraft back together as the inspection process itself has been completed. Over the past week various components have been repaired, discrepancies corrected, systems checked and double-checked, tests run, measurements taken, data and manuals referred to, and every nook and cranny has been looked into and evaluated for airworthiness.

Inspecting an airplane is a critical part of aviation maintenance and is something each of our apprentices will be doing as they continue their service around the world. Good inspections, good inspectors, save lives and resources.

Earlier today: Scott works on the engine, Paul installs the nose gear, Tim provides instruction, and Gertjan (inside the fuselage) works on the airplane's interior.

Later this afternoon: Gertjan secures the spinner in place
and Andy finishes some engine work.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Every Journey Starts With One Step

As every journey starts with one step, every wiring harness begins with one wire. Here's the navigation/communication "stack" for the Moody 182 (minus the actual avionics equipment). Mike's to the point where it's time to start installing specific wires into their respective receptacles. This avionics journey began with one red wire in one of the audio slots. With audio, communication, and transponder slots yet to fill there's still a bit of wiring yet to do.

The radio stack and one red wire.

Here's the radio stack a short while later.

As progress is made I'll post additional shots of the stack.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Beautiful Weather and Easter Weekend

Here are two snapshots I took yesterday afternoon to prove that, even in April, we do have moments of nice weather sandwiched between the days of clouds, rain, and snow...

Gospel Carrier International's Cessna 310
on the ramp between Hangar B & C.

Gospel Carrier International's Cessna 172
returns to service.

Everyone at MMS wishes you a very special weekend as we'll be closed tomorrow in observance of Good Friday. May this Easter be a time of renewal and refreshment for you as we remember the crucifixion of Christ and celebrate our Lord's triumphant resurrection. He is risen...He is risen INDEED!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The 210 Annual Inspection Continues

While Josh was back in Hangar C installing the propeller on GCI's 172, Ian, Gertjan, Andy, and Paul continued their work on the 210 up in Hangar A.

Paul prepares the 210's rear window to be resealed.

Ian inspects the 210's left wing.

Andy inspects the engine.

Annual inspections like this provide a tremendous opportunity for the apprentices to become familiar with aircraft systems as well as specific aircraft makes and models. It's a different type of experience than the heavy restoration going on with the 206's and the 182, but just as important for the balanced understanding necessary to serve as a mechanic in a remote field setting.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

An Annual Inspection and Avionics

A regional Cessna 210 arrived yesterday for annual inspection. Already the access panels have been opened, the cabin interior removed, the airframe raised on floor jacks, the wheels pulled from the landing gear, and the engine is being looked over. If all goes well, it'll be back in the air in two weeks.

Ian inspects the 210's nose gear.

Josh makes an upgrade to the 210's pilot's seat.

While manpower has been shifted from the 182 project to the 210, Mike continues to build the wiring harness and communication cables for the Moody 182.

Mike labels cables at the avionics bench.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Regional Aircraft Projects

The troubleshooting of performance issues with a regional airplane is nearly completed. After carefully working through a series of tests and inspections over the past week or so, the trouble was identified and the final steps toward resolution should be taken this afternoon.

Dennis & Tim complete their work on the engine of a regional airplane.

Another regional airplane is having its engine overhauled while a third regional aircraft arrived today for an annual inspection.

Chuck measures engine components during pre-assembly.

Friday, April 3, 2009

A Podcast and Project Pictures

MMS just participated in its very first "podcast." It's featured as Episode #3 on the International Association of Missionary Aviation (IAMA) website. You can access and listen to the podcast by clicking here.

As far as project updates, the Moody 182 continues to move ahead. Mike is still assembling the various wiring bundles necessary for the avionics equipment, Ian continues to fit the interior pieces, and Andy is taping off the new windows in preparation for applying sealant.

Josh is taking care of some odds and ends on the Honduran 206 and Greg, a regular volunteer, is fabricating new skin for the Brazilian 206.

The Moody 182.

Ian continues fitting the new interior panels for the 182.

Josh aligns and marks new motor mount shrouds for the Honduran 206.

Thanks for being part of this dynamic ministry through your friendship, interest, prayers and your gifts. Please tell others about MMS and feel free to email these posts (and the podcast!) to anyone you think might have an interest. The better MMS is known, the better we'll be enabled to serve mission aviation. And may God receive the glory for it!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

It's Hard To Believe It's Already Wednesday

With Paul and Gertjan down at JAARS in Waxhaw, NC for PT6 training, with Scott G. down in Florida on Rapid Response with Harvest Aviation, with Scott L. still to return from his two month internship with MARC, and David M. in Ethopia finalizing an adoption, things are a bit quieter in the hangar right now compared to how it was just a week ago. This Friday it'll be even quieter as three additional guys take a day of vacation. But work continues to be accomplished.

Chuck is organizing all the parts to reassemble the engine he's overhauling. Josh is measuring parts for the engine he's overhauling and assisting with the 182 when he's not working on GCI's 172. Mike is building wiring harnesses for the various components in the new instrument panel he's fabricating for Moody's 182. Ian has started installing the 182's interior and Andy is taping the horizontal stabilizer he's re-covering for a local Taylorcraft.

Josh and Mike discuss servicing the Moody 182's wing flap actuator.

Ian installs interior panels in the 182.

Andy tapes the leading edge of the Talorcraft's horizontal stabilizer.