AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 84

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SAGGING VIBRATION isolators (left) resulted in severe chafing that gouged grooves into the
engine's oil sump (right).

The inspection revealed fuel leaks
at the wing roots, apparently coming
from the fuel quantity sending units. In
addition, the left upper forward and aft
wing root fuel lines were leaking into the
cabin, something that had apparently
been going on for some time because fuel
stains were visible on the cabin headliner.
Fixing these leaks was going to be a laborintensive task. Alpha's IA was apparently
concerned enough that he had the airplane defueled. He was also concerned
that removing the old, stiff headliner to
gain access to the leaking fuel lines might
damage the headliner irreparably.
This preliminary discrepancy list
from Alpha Aviation didn't include any
cost estimates, but some of the airworthiness discrepancies would clearly be
expensive ones to repair. The engine
vibration isolators were so worn-and
the engine had sagged so far-that various engine components were rubbing
against the lower cowling. In fact, the
engine's oil sump had chafing against a
length of wire-wound air duct that ran
beneath the engine, and the oil sump was
so deeply gouged that the IA believed inflight failure and loss of engine oil was a
real possibility. Fixing this would require
hoisting the engine and replacing the
sump and the shock mounts.
The discrepancy list indicated that
the exhaust system was in bad shape and
would need extensive repairs. However,
the cylinder exhaust studs were so badly
84 | AOPA PILOT April 2021

corroded that the IA was worried that
some of them might break off in the process of removing the exhaust system,
which might necessitate removing cylinders and sending them out for repair. In
other words, this could get messy.
There were other expensive-sounding
discrepancies listed. The left main landing gear leg was found to be loose in the
airframe attach fitting and would need
to be removed (a nasty and labor-intensive job) so that the attach fitting and
hardware could be repaired or replaced.
The co-pilot-side upper cabin door hinge
was cracked and in need of replacement.
Literally every control cable tension was
too low, and the elevator trim cables were
misrouted. Chafing was found almost
everywhere you looked. The primer fuel
line was tie-wrapped to an electrical harness, which is a big no-no. All the wheel
bearings and races were badly scored and
in need of replacement. The brakes were
spongy. The shimmy damper was leaking and had lost its fluid. The list went on
and on.
THE GREAT DEBATE

Sam was floored. Obviously all these problems could not have developed in the past
12 months. That left two possibilities:
Either Sam's mechanic in Maryland had
been pencil-whipping his annuals, or the
California shop was being grossly overzealous. Sam trusted his IA back home
and told Alpha Aviation in no uncertain


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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021

Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Intro
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 4
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 6
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 10
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 12
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 16
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 18
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 20
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 22
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 24
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 26
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 28
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 30
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 32
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 34
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 35
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 36
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 38
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 40
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 42
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 43
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 44
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 50
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 51
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 53
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 58
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 60
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 61
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 62
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 63
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 64
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 65
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 66
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 67
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 68
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 69
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 70
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 71
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 72
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 73
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 74
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 94
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover4
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