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  1. #1
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    Default Whats a good mechanic worth?

    How about a bad one?

    I mean, in our field we have all been into the position to make judgment calls, very expensive ones. I have seen insane amounts of money chasing problems that in some cases were pure waste throwing parts at a problem. what is the percentage I wonder of NFF parts sent to overhaul facilities are returned as so, with a minimum charge? Or for liability reasons do they simply re-overhaul a serviceable unit.

    I remember an instance where we had the DOM screaming in the middle of the hangar because 150,000 was spent trying to fix a problem that turned out to be mis-wiring.

    Insane right? Proper understanding of systems is CRUCIAL to troubleshooting but many people do not have this understanding. Someone once said if you cannot explain something simply, you don't know enough about it.

    In the service we did a LOT of swapping for comparative maintenance. Reason? Because 8 O-rings and 20 man hours are cheaper than a 45,000 HMU. Also doing this builds data that can be referred to to gain perspective on what usually fixes a problem.

    It has been my experience that a Title or a Position does not make one a super troubleshooting, this is even stated in the 9 level description for USAF Jobs.

    And how many times do simple repairs, get horrendously expensive from a lack of concern or knowledge?

    Thoughts?

    Steve
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression

  2. #2
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    Default

    Happens a lot in aviation. I say, "Thats an awfully expensive part you just scrapped" the other guy shrugs this shoulders and says "I didnt pay for it". I think it boils down to that old saying "There's two kinds of money and two ways to spend it" Think of how critical everything would be if you personally owned and operated the aircraft. One mistake could mean bankruptcy and losing everything! Compare that with working in a large corporate owned maintenance department where everyone employed is a mere wage slave. Supervisors at these places often turn a new kid loose with a drill knowing he will likely ruin something, just to put him in his place. Management is not responsible for workers actions therefore eliminating any moral hazard. Firing someone at the bottom always satisfy everyone above, mechanics are at the bottom. A good mechanic is worth a fortune, he never gets any recognition for good deeds yet always get blamed for all that goes wrong. A&Ps as a group can turn this around if they wanted to. We must be vocal and achieve/demand higher standards for maintenance workers. Pilots did this after the Colgan crash and got the ATP rule which has tripled starting wages at regionals. We need to follow that path!

  3. #3
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    first, we as a whole need to DESERVE that path. Chicken and Egg


    lol


    Steve


    \
    Quote Originally Posted by kevbo View Post
    Happens a lot in aviation. I say, "Thats an awfully expensive part you just scrapped" the other guy shrugs this shoulders and says "I didnt pay for it". I think it boils down to that old saying "There's two kinds of money and two ways to spend it" Think of how critical everything would be if you personally owned and operated the aircraft. One mistake could mean bankruptcy and losing everything! Compare that with working in a large corporate owned maintenance department where everyone employed is a mere wage slave. Supervisors at these places often turn a new kid loose with a drill knowing he will likely ruin something, just to put him in his place. Management is not responsible for workers actions therefore eliminating any moral hazard. Firing someone at the bottom always satisfy everyone above, mechanics are at the bottom. A good mechanic is worth a fortune, he never gets any recognition for good deeds yet always get blamed for all that goes wrong. A&Ps as a group can turn this around if they wanted to. We must be vocal and achieve/demand higher standards for maintenance workers. Pilots did this after the Colgan crash and got the ATP rule which has tripled starting wages at regionals. We need to follow that path!
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve340 View Post
    first, we as a whole need to DESERVE that path. Chicken and Egg


    lol


    Steve


    \
    There is currently an extended NPRM covering 147 schools. Industry wants to take control of the curriculum and shorten time required to qualify. They also want to increase credit for military service. This will increase the supply of mechanics just as much as offshoring reduced demand. I doesn't look like the FAA will totally release control of maintenance but nothing has been finalized. If industry gets what it wants, our status and compensation will be in line with other ramp personnel.

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    I think a lot of it has to do with the operation you are working at. I've worked mostly Government. Where there is always an overriding concern to be sure and be safe. Example perfectly good parts will be changed just in case. Or changed just to say something was done to placate the Ops side of the house.

    This also goes to troubleshooting and doing repairs. If you are at a operation that has 10 of the same exact airframe. You will always have a spare part to swap out quickly. Which will lower the troubleshooting skills of the technicians as compared to ones who work at a single example of the airframe. Who have to verify every aspect of the system before spending money.

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    As far as management is concerned. Training is something I've always tried to get them to go along with. But mostly to no avail.

    I worked on one complex airframe that had a factory schools available. But management wont spend the 5K to send someone. But have no problem spending 50K fixing an aircraft. Which ended up being something very simple.

  7. #7
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    EXACTLY my point.

    I think we have all been there, it's a Fuel control, change it, no go, turns out to be a loose connection on a P3 line, tons of other examples. Training training training. I used to work in a shop, you didn't go to schools until you worked on the plane in a helper position ( did good work, just didn't make decisions ) THEN they would send you to a factory school. This is an incredibly smart move by the company and good for the mechanic. Lets face it, I've been to school on a plane I never touched before and got about zero out of it. Only usable part of the school was the guides and location cards you got. But without actually playing with a MFD for instance, the parts of the classes regarding them are Chinese when you've never seen one.

    Steve


    Quote Originally Posted by MC5Wes View Post
    As far as management is concerned. Training is something I've always tried to get them to go along with. But mostly to no avail.

    I worked on one complex airframe that had a factory schools available. But management wont spend the 5K to send someone. But have no problem spending 50K fixing an aircraft. Which ended up being something very simple.
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression

  8. #8
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    interesting INFORMATION, I HOPE IT NEVER GETS TO THAT. sry caps lol

    The industry did seem to derail the AMT thing, which would have been huge for us.

    Steve

    Quote Originally Posted by kevbo View Post
    There is currently an extended NPRM covering 147 schools. Industry wants to take control of the curriculum and shorten time required to qualify. They also want to increase credit for military service. This will increase the supply of mechanics just as much as offshoring reduced demand. I doesn't look like the FAA will totally release control of maintenance but nothing has been finalized. If industry gets what it wants, our status and compensation will be in line with other ramp personnel.
    You never have a second chance, to make a first impression