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Monday, August 31, 2009

Moody's 182 Takes Off For Spokane, Washington

It was quite a morning as flight plans were filed and fuel was pumped for the Moody Aviation Cessna 182's return flight to Spokane, Washington.

At approximately 11:30 this morning the 182 left the runway, retracted its landing gear, climbed into the deep blue Ohio sky and took a westerly heading. It was quite the project. Mike, Ian, and the hangar crew worked long and hard to complete this restoration project and Jim Conrad, Moody Aviation Flight Staff, was very pleased with the results.

The MMS Crew and the 182.

Taxing from the MMS ramp and on to the active taxiway.

The 182 departs Coshocton County Airport.

As you think about it over the next couple days, you might pray for Jim and his son, David, as they wing their way back to the Pacific Northwest.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Aztec Returns to Service

Just wanted to let you know the Aztec that came in for the "routine" oil change on Tuesday did return to service today! I wasn't at the shop when it departed (so no photo) but Tim and Dennis did a great job getting the airplane back in the air.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The New Oil Cooler Arrives for the Aztec

The new oil cooler for the Aztec did arrive first thing this morning.

Here's Tim in the parts room signing-in the new oil cooler.

Several other small squawks with the airplane were discovered yesterday so the Aztec isn't going to fly this afternoon, after all. The tire on the left main landing gear needs to be replaced and there's an adjustment to be made with an oil return line on the right engine.

So while Tim worked on the right engine, Dennis installed the oil cooler on the left engine.

Dennis installs the oil cooler.

Over on the Honduran 206 the final airframe tasks are being completed. The interior is being prepared for installation and adjustments are being made to the cowling to incorporate used components from another 206.

Paul works on the Honduran 206's cowling.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Routine Oil Change, Non-routine Result

A regional evangelical association flew their Piper Aztec in for a routine oil change this morning. MMS regularly maintains and inspects their Aztec. Upon positioning the aircraft in the hangar Tim noticed a pattern of fresh oil on the underside of the left wing culminating in oil dripping from the trailing edge of the flap.

Going ahead with the oil change, Tim brought MMS Chief Inspector, Dennis Satterthwaite, into the picture and the two of them gave the engine an in-depth inspection. With suspicions of a cracked oil cooler, Tim and Dennis isolated the oil cooler, hooked up shop air, and prepared to simulate the 100 pounds of oil pressure that would normally push through the cooler. At 40 pounds a drip began to seep from the the cooler. At 60 pounds it was a steady flow. Tim and Dennis surmise that at 100 pounds a steady spray of oil would have been hitting the firewall, draining through the landing gear doors, and exiting off the wing.

Tim positions the aircraft in Hangar A.

Tim drains the oil from the left engine.

Tim and Dennis inspect the engine.

Testing the oil cooler with shop air.

After checking local suppliers for a new oil cooler, a new cooler had to be ordered from California and will be delivered tomorrow. Lord willing, the Aztec will be back in the sky shortly after the oil cooler arrives.

This is the kind of thing we look for and are glad to find. Routine maintenance is done routinely in order to find the non-routine. It's a blessing to have the facility, the expertise, and God's enabling to serve the mission community by making sure its airplanes are airworthy and safe to fly. In tomorrow's post I hope to show the installation on the new oil cooler and then the return of the aircraft to mission service!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Video Overview of MMS Projects

Paul Jones, an MMS apprentice, is also a talented videographer. It's my pleasure to share one of his latest video-logs. In this clip Paul provides an overview of the current mission projects at MMS and explains the various tasks with which he's been involved. I hope you enjoy the tour.

Current Mission Projects At MMS from Paul Jones on Vimeo.

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Moody 182 Flew Today!

The most exciting part of any long-term aircraft restoration project is the moment when it returns to the sky!

That happened today, around 11 AM this morning, as the Moody 182, after two years of restoration, returned to the skies over Coshocton County. Here are some photos that tell the tale!

Here's the airplane as it arrived at MMS back in early 2007 after suffering a hard landing, nose gear collapse, and propeller strike.

The guys gather to pray over the airplane before its first flight.

Jim Conrad, Moody Aviation Flight Staff and Ian Hengst, MMS Team Leader and Chief Pilot, before taking off were the pilots.

Jim pre-flights the 182.
It looks a little better than when it arrived, eh?


Part of the crew that worked on the 182 waits and watches: Gertjan (now serving with MAF), Andy, Mike the 182's Project Manager, Josh, and Scott G.

The 182 takes off!

Gear coming up...

Gear up and the hammer down.

After about an hour and a half flight, Ian and Jim returned to the hangar and reported the airplane flew beautifully. The 182 will be with us for another week or so as the final squawks are worked off, for additional flights to be made, for instrument certification, and to locate any discrepancies that may be revealed through increased operation. Following that, Jim will fly the airplane back to Moody Aviation in Spokane, Washington where it will be used to train future missionary pilots for field service.

Thanks for being part of this project through your gifts, encouragements, and prayers.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Final Preparations to Fly the Cessna 182

The past couple blogs have mentioned how close the Moody 182 is to being ready to fly. Well, today everything left to get ready was gotten ready. Tomorrow, Lord willing, the fully restored Cessna 182 RG (Retractable Gear) will launch into the Coshocton County sky.

Andy and Ian wash the 182 outside Hangar C.

Andy and Ian charge the electrical system and check instrument operability.

But as the 182 undergoes final preparation, work continues on the other aircraft projects as well, the Cessna 337, the Honduran 206, and the CMML engine overhaul.

Tim and Paul test-fit a used cowling for installation on the Honduran 206 in Hangar B.

Inside the engine test cell, Josh and Tim install a "hood" over the CMML engine before running-it up. The hood, which Josh fabricated, assists in cooling the engine.

Thanks for checking in. There's a lot going on at MMS and we're thankful you have an active interest in it.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Weekend Wrap-up

There was a lot going on in the hangar Thursday and Friday.

Thursday saw Williams Chang bring the GCI King Air in for a repair to the air conditioning system and a compressor wash. Tim ran down the AC problem and Scott L. assisted with the compressor wash.

Scott L. operates the compressor washing system as Tim spins the propeller.

On Friday, Josh continued his work getting the CMML engine ready to operate in our engine test cell.

Josh tightens the cylinder head covers.

Josh in the test cell viewed from inside the engine shop. The operator's panel in the foreground controls and monitors the engine's operation.

Also, the final work on the Moody 182 RG continued. Lord willing, it will undergo a series of test flights next week.

Ian checks the fit of the prop spinner for the 182.

With the fit verified, Ian installs the spinner.

Jim, from Moody Aviation, and his son, Daniel, are in town. They'll fly the airplane back to Moody Aviation's facility in Spokane, Washington, once all the "bugs" are worked out and final adjustments are made.

Jim and Daniel in front of the nearly completed 182 restoration.

The 182's brakes have been bled and the initial engine run-ups and systems checks should start on Monday!

In other work: The Honduran 206 project continues to move ahead with adjustments and corrosion repair to the elevators and Chuck fabricated additional engine baffling for the Canadian 337.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Annual Inspection and The 182 Nears Completion

Back in Hangar C, Dale is conducting an annual inspection of Gospel Carrier International's Cessna 172.

Dale inspects the engine of GCI's 172.

In Hangar B, Team Dunkley is focused on "closing up" the 182 in preparation for its return to service flight. Ian is installing the last details of the interior. A pilot from Moody Aviation has arrived to conduct the test flights and then fly the aircraft back to Moody's facility in Spokane, Washington.

Mike, Ian, Rachel, and Andy close up the Moody 182.

Monday, August 10, 2009

An Oshkosh Perspective, By Paul Jones

I believe AirVenture is an incredible opportunity to expose many people to MMS Aviation. This exposure has the potential to expand awareness of what God is doing through MMS as well as connect individuals for possible service.

(Paul Jones is an apprentice mechanic with MMS preparing for future service on the mission field as a pilot/mechanic.)

Friday, August 7, 2009

An Oshkosh Perspective, by Scott Grote

EAA's AirVenture, Oshkosh 2009, was by event standards one of the biggest ever and was described this way on the AirVenture web site:

Overflowing aircraft campgrounds, a filled-to-capacity Camp Scholler, even filled-beyond-belief car parking lots— they all add up to what EAA President and Chairman Tom Poberezny said was “a convention that will go down in the record books as one of the best ever.” “It’s hard to put into words,” he admitted. “In every category—aircraft, camping, attendance, you name it—everything exceeded expectations."

What did this mean for mission aviation? Hundreds of thousands of people were in some way exposed to the use of airplanes for God.

Many people went through the International Association of Missionary Aviation (IAMA) tent, a modern tabernacle containing at least 32 mission organizations of various sizes and purposes. Yet all the organizations represented there, in some way, ultimately use aircraft to send the Gospel of Christ near and far. Still thousands more people visited the "FLY4LIFE" tents on Aeroshell square at the center of the display area. These tents housed a mixture of mission organizations and aircraft designed to tell the story about where mission aviation began, what it's doing today, and where it's headed tomorrow.

And even beyond all this, you could hardly go anywhere on the massive grounds and not bump into something related to mission aviation...the float plane base had a mission aircraft there; the vintage aircraft section held the world's oldest known, continuously flying, aircraft used for mission aviation; and the Lord worked it out so the MFI DC3 ended up parked in the ultra-light section (talk about standing out in a crowd)!Every day a public forum on various topics was lead by someone in ministry and in the evenings interviews were conducted with people like Steve Saint and others having a long legacy of reaching the lost through the use of airplanes.

There were more than four hundred missionaries there that the Lord used to glorify Himself in the realm of aviation. We were "cared for" (3 meals a day, transportation and Housing for 400+!) by a unique mission organization called "Mission Aviation Support Association" or MASA. I can tell you I would not have been able to attend this amazing event without them. For years they have been making it possible for mission people to come to AirVenture by organizing help from more than 60 churches in the area and countless individuals. This organization is a model for what is possible if we all focus on Christ as our common goal.

So what does all this mean? When I was asked to write a paragraph describing "my impression of Oshkosh" I didn't think that task was going to be difficult. Now a full page later I must confess...I can't begin to describe it. This doesn't even contain the countless personal stories of God's miracles we heard each day as we ate and worked and played together. The Oshkosh experience for me was a Blessing I can't yet comprehend...Hope to see you there next year.

(Scott Grote is part of the MMS training staff and serves in the role of Production Mechanic.)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Oshkosh Continued #1: The Maverick

Thanks for your prayers for Team Oshkosh this past week. Everyone returned home safe, tired, and, at the same time, energized. The initial reports I've received indicate the week was well invested in ministry with exciting opportunities, contacts, possibilities, and options existing now that didn't exist before AirVenture 2009 began.

The turnout was great and the interest in mission aviation was high. The reality of having more than 400 missionaries and Christian workers in one place for seven days created its own unique synergy within the worldwide aviation community gathered at the event known simply as "Oshkosh."

One of the more unique missionary aviation projects on display was the "Maverick," a flying car geared toward meeting air and ground transportation for indigenous peoples in remote locations. The Maverick is a design and development project of Steve Saint and
i-tec (Indigenous peoples Technology Education Center). MMS has worked closely with Steve Saint on several aviation projects and restored the PA-14 used in the making of the feature film, "End of The Spear."

Here's The Maverick on display at Oshkosh.

Here's video of The Maverick in operation.


To watch additional video of The Maverick, and visit the i-tec website, click here.

Monday, August 3, 2009

MMS Field Report #7: Saturday at Oshkosh

Heading into Sunday's closing events, the ten members of MMS' Team Oshkosh were tired but energized, worn out but ready to keep going, were blessed and had been blessings to others, and had faithfully represented Christ at one of the most dynamic aviation events in the world.

Five of the team: Dwight, Rena, Tim, Andy, and Scott at the MMS display in the IAMA tent.

Fly-4-Life Tent and static display ramp.

The Fly-4-Life tent was part of the missionary component of this AirVenture and was the venue for special features and events related to missionary aviation. The blue and white airplane is a Heliocourier operated by JAARS. The red and white airplane is a Kodiak operated by MAF.

Friends of MMS: Rob & Jennifer Rice

Rob & Jennifer are long-time friends of MMS and are the founders of Great Commission Air which operates in Guatemala. They enjoy their aviation ministry in Central America and have a tremendous heart for serving the people of Guatemala. You can learn more about their ministry by clicking here.

As I write this, our team is heading back to Coshocton full of tales to tell and excited by new relationships to share. While AirVenture 2009 may have ended...its story, through MMS, has just begun.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

MMS Field Report #6: Friday At Oshkosh, Relationships and MASA

Relationships
One of the key aspects of attending a gathering of the size and scope of AirVenture is the way it brings so many aviation enthusiasts together in one location. It provides an opportunity to renew, restore, and build new relationships. With mission aviators spread literally around the world, there are only one or two events each year that can really draw "everyone" together under one roof, or tent, for a time of interaction. The annual International Association of Missionary Aviation Conference is one such venue. Oshkosh is the other.

Many friends, graduates, and pilots who've been served by MMS have stopped by the display table in the IAMA tent. Jacques, from Congo, Africa; Dave Spangler, from the Bahamas; Terry McClary, Philip Thompson, Ward Montgomery, Mitch Pennington, Ryan Joy (MMS grad serving in Brazil), are just a few who stopped by the MMS display to say hello.

Of course people interested in learning more about MMS Aviation are also stoppying by to learn how MMS prepares people and planes for worldwide mission service. Several have requested additional information to learn more about the program in greater detail.

At least one new media relationship has been established between MMS and General Aviation News. And it sounds as if contacts were made which could lead to another venue being opened up for missionary representation down at Sun 'N Fun, the other major US fly-in airshow. We'll see how it all works out.

AirVenture finishes on Saturday with tear-down and clean-up on Sunday. I'll have another post or two before Team Oshkosh returns.

MASA
I've previously mentioned the Mission Aviation Support Association (all volunteer) which was formed to handle the logistical side of missionary housing, meals, speaking, and transporation challenges related to AirVenture. This year that covered nearly 400 missionaries.

MASA does a fantastic job of making sure the main thing visiting missionaries need to concern themselves with is just getting to Oshosh. MASA takes care off all the rest. Over the past few years, MASA has grown from an idea of one man, to a living reality expressing its own Christian witness throughout AirVenture venue as well as the local community. MASA is integral to the success of the missionary effort at AirVenture and is a wonderful example of the Christian community working together as one body. It's a ministry and a blessing for which all the missionaries at AirVenture are thankful.

Cooking the MASA breakfast eggs.

MASA volunteers prepared to serve.

Asking the blessing on the morning meal.

AirVenture is an exiting time for the Christian community to live a witness among 500-700,000 people over the course of one week. It's an experience unique to itself, and creates an aviation synergy that is unequalled in its scope and focus.

Thank you for your prayers and gifts which have made it possible for MMS to send Team Oshkosh to AirVenture.