May_June_2022 - 20
sooner or later, somebody will end up with
some. Even if you only get half of what you
need, you're halfway there at least. "
Cryer too is often on the hunt for parts.
He says those in the aviation community
are supporting each other where they can.
" For supply chain stuff, for us, we have so
many avenues we can use to get parts. And
we're not afraid to search, we're not afraid
to call people, we're not afraid to call other
shops and ask for their help on it. And we
do that because we're all still a community.
" If somebody calls me, I really don't want
to sell over the counter parts. I want to keep
them for my customers. But if there's a shop
in a pinch, we help them out. And we get the
same thing from other shops in the area, "
Places that historically would not sell
parts over the counter, Cryer said are now
making exceptions for shops in need or
helping them locate the part when they
don't have it.
" I think that, with all the resources out
there, and we're a pretty big country, and
people have stuff on their shelves in places,
so we end up being able to find stuff. Not
easy, but we find it and we can get it here, "
While numerous factors are driving the
parts shortage and overall supply chain
strain, one of the factors driving the hunt
for parts is simply that it's an issue affecting
everyone, creating quasi-competition
between all. As Kuti explains, smaller shops
can sometimes be left behind.
" The biggest problem we run into is a lot
of the large suppliers, they're ordering such
large quantities, that when a smaller shop
like us puts an order in with a distributor
or the manufacturer, we're kind of on the
back end of that list, " Kuti said.
Kuti continued that because the big distributors
are putting in $100,000 worth of
orders each month to keep up with their and
their customers needs, it creates a backlog
for shops like Pinnacle whose parts needs
" It's hard for a smaller shop like us to do
that, especially when we may not need that
many cylinders of one model, we may need
20 MAY/JUNE 2022
10 different models worth of cylinders, " Kuti
Another factor can be the literal supply
chain itself, with ordered parts taking longer
than usual to arrive.
" The toughest thing that we have, is not
even a parts procurement right now, as
much as it is the freight companies. They
are just way behind the curve, " said Cryer.
Cryer said in one instance an engine was
lost for some time in transit to them.
If there's a shop in a pinch,
we help them out. And we
get the same thing from
other shops in the area.
" We had a PT6 engine shipped to us and
lost, if you can imagine that. It was absolutely
crazy. It was missing, realistically,
for a little over three weeks. And it came
from Canada, so it was somewhere stuck
in quarantine with all that stuff that goes
on, " he said. " More than trying to get stuff, it
has been trying to get stuff from the freight
The age of engine is also determining
parts availability. Kuti said there is a
larger discrepancy between finding parts
for newer engines compared to older ones.
" For instance, last year, Continental kind
of changed directions and they pulled a lot
of part numbers off their production list. So
a lot of the older engines, C85s O300s, the E
model engines, E225s and stuff like that, a
lot of the parts were pulled off of production
list. And if there's not a PMA part for that
engine, you're kind of looking for a hen's
tooth. You're actually calling just trying to
find anybody that has some old surplus of
those components, " he said.
The PMA companies have stepped up
and started producing a lot of these components,
but even still there's certain things
that can't be found anymore unless you have
old stock of it, Kuti said. He sees a time when
these engines will need to be replaced with
new models due to unavailable parts.
" But once all that old stock that people
have is depleted, you're really going to be
left with trying to figure out the next move.
And I think a lot of it's going to be changing
to a newer style engine. Most of the aircraft
that have those older style engines already
have STCs to go to a different engine model, "
All of this issue with parts and the supply
chain comes at a time when business is on
an uptick, with Cryer describing them as
being " almost chaotic busy. "
" Our world here at Plane Safe has been
absolutely busy. We are chaotic busy,
almost. Our normal customer's based here
in Waukesha. We actually bring customers
from all over the place. But we've seen, just
in this year alone, a pretty good influx of
new customers coming into us. I'm not sure
why that is, " he said.
And customers are learning to adapt to
the changing landscape. Kuti says people
are starting to plan ahead more and it's a
practice he's recommending people follow.
" If you know you're coming up to where
you need to do an overhaul, or you want to
do an overhaul, get with what engine shop
you want and prefer to use. At least get an
agreement in place and maybe even a deposit
on getting cylinders on order, " Kuti said.
Kuti said they're doing that quite a bit
with customers, as it speeds up the process.
" We'll pre-order cylinders with a deposit,
get those on the shelf and let the customer
know, 'Hey, we're ready for you when you
are.' And that way it speeds up the process, "
Customers are also shifting to opt for
repairs rather than overhauls.
" If their engine comes in for repair, they'll
stick to a repair just because when they find
out how long it may take to get cylinders, it
kind of scares them off, " he said.
Cryer said that their uptick in business
is shining a light on another issue, finding
mechanics to take on the increased
" I think in our industry right now, the
biggest thing is trying to find mechanics.
That's probably the single biggest thing that
we have right now, " he said.
Cryer's other concern is fuel prices and
hoping that they'll stabilize soon, or else
AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of May_June_2022
Your Mobile Home
The Hunt for Parts
An Inconvenient Truth
Getting Aircraft on Ground Flying Again
In the Post-Pandemic World, General Aviation is Taking Off
The Dos and Don'ts of Communication System Maintenance
Basler Turbo Conversions Makes the Old New Again
A Promising Outlook for General Aviation
How Naval Aviation is Combatting Its Billion- Dollar Corrosion Problem
May_June_2022 - 1
May_June_2022 - 2
May_June_2022 - 3
May_June_2022 - So What?
May_June_2022 - 5
May_June_2022 - Industry Inspection
May_June_2022 - 7
May_June_2022 - 8
May_June_2022 - 9
May_June_2022 - 10
May_June_2022 - 11
May_June_2022 - Your Mobile Home
May_June_2022 - 13
May_June_2022 - The Hunt for Parts
May_June_2022 - 15
May_June_2022 - 16
May_June_2022 - 17
May_June_2022 - 18
May_June_2022 - 19
May_June_2022 - 20
May_June_2022 - 21
May_June_2022 - An Inconvenient Truth
May_June_2022 - 23
May_June_2022 - Getting Aircraft on Ground Flying Again
May_June_2022 - 25
May_June_2022 - In the Post-Pandemic World, General Aviation is Taking Off
May_June_2022 - 27
May_June_2022 - The Dos and Don'ts of Communication System Maintenance
May_June_2022 - 29
May_June_2022 - 30
May_June_2022 - 31
May_June_2022 - Basler Turbo Conversions Makes the Old New Again
May_June_2022 - 33
May_June_2022 - 34
May_June_2022 - 35
May_June_2022 - A Promising Outlook for General Aviation
May_June_2022 - 37
May_June_2022 - How Naval Aviation is Combatting Its Billion- Dollar Corrosion Problem
May_June_2022 - 39
May_June_2022 - 40
May_June_2022 - 41
May_June_2022 - Advertiser’s Index
May_June_2022 - 43
May_June_2022 - 44