Charlie Taylor (1868 – 1956) was an American inventor, mechanic and machinist. John, Greg and Todd talk about the impacts of Taylor’s work in the earliest days of aviation.
Taylor built the first aircraft engine used by the Wright brothers in the Wright Flyer. He was a vital contributor of mechanical skills in the building and maintaining of early Wright engines and airplanes.
An unsung hero in his day, his contributions are now recognized and applauded. Aviation Maintenance Technician Day is observed on May 24, Taylor’s birthday.
In 1902 Taylor was running the Wright brothers bike shop in Ohio and also the Wright Flyer. He would regularly make and ship parts to keep the brothers flying at their testing grounds on North Carolina.
Maintenance technicians today continue Taylor’s legacy. Hear about his trail blazing inventions and approaches that created the foundation of the aviation maintenance profession.
This episode also covers education and professional opportunities in aviation maintenance today.
This episode kicks off with a recap of the 2022 Aerospace Maintenance Competition. John applauds the aircraft maintenance talents of the more than 350 participants. More than 800 people attended the event!
Team and individuals earned awards and scholarships. More than 25 people also earned final interviews with companies in attendance to staff their maintenance crews.
Keeping with the aircraft maintenance theme, Greg and John cover the crash of Emery Worldwide Airlines Flight 17. Greg served at the NTSB investigator in charge. John also visited the crash site.
Originally thought to be caused by a cargo shift, the accident investigation revealed a maintenance error was the root cause. John explains the mistakes made during maintenance of the plane’s tail. It all comes down to simple bolts that were installed incorrectly.
Greg highlights the challenges of recovering the plane wreckage. The crash was into an auto salvage yard and caused a large fire. Investigators had to sift through everything to find the DC8 parts.
Following procedures can lead to maintenance successes and failures. This episode showcases those highs and lows.
Todd Curtis has decided to return to the cockpit after decades and he’s sharing his experience. Whether you are new to aviation or are rusty after a brief or long time away from flying, this discussion is for you.
Todd and John walk through the steps and how to have a safety mindset from day one.
Listen for tips that will help you fly safe!
Greg Feith flies solo as he presents a roundup of recent fatal air crashes. The focus is on three accidents now under investigation that add to the escalation of fatal crashes this year.
Hear preliminary details related to the crashes that involved a Cessna 340 in Georgia, a Cessna 337 in California, and a Diamond DA40. Greg surfaces the issues that could make these accidents important lessons for all pilots.
With popular flying season starting, Greg asks every pilot to ask themselves “Am I ready?” before getting into the cockpit. He makes the point that flight airworthiness extends beyond the aircraft. The pilot also needs to be proficient, comfortable, and competent before takeoff.
“Benign situations can quickly escalate if a pilot is not prepared with the basics,” Greg says.
He wraps up with a case for the “WTF Files.” A stunt for Red Bull made headlines when an in-air pilot switch went wrong and one plane crashed. The FAA had issued a letter of denial for the stunt the day before. Aviation stunts can be entertaining, but this event compromised aviation safety.
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