What About the Mechanics!

Keep your mechanic happy

Airplane mechanics make flying things go and keep people safe. Our lives are in their hands every minute we’re in the air, so it never hurts to keep them happy.  Am I right?

What makes a mechanic happy other than cookies, barbecues, and the occasional after-work beverage? Here’s a short list of suggestions to consider when you’re ready to take your craft in for its annual or an inspection.

Your Aircraft’s Unique Characteristics

Keep a list of those characteristics and give them to the folks who are either repairing or inspecting your aircraft.

  • There’s a noise that your plane makes that no one else’s plane makes (as far as you know). You’d know that noise anywhere. So far, you’ve had no trouble, so you figure “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Do write it down.
  • There’s that smell. It’s not the new upholstery smell. It’s not the fried-chicken-in-a-picnic-basket smell, either. It’s something else that doesn’t quite smell like smoke or hot upholstery. You don’t smell it every time you’re flying, or sometimes you hardly notice it. You’ve had no trouble up to now, so telling your mechanic slips your mind. Keep track of it the first time you notice it.
  • There’s that tickle that runs up your spine. Every engine vibrates, but it feels a little off today. Too intense, uneven. One-sided, maybe. Make a note.

Noises, though, can help a mechanic find existing or potential problems, so keeping a list with dates makes the mechanic’s job a little easier. Smells or vibrations, constant or intermittent, strong or faint, can help a mechanic find a problem more quickly, saving you trouble and money later. It’s good to note date, time, description and circumstances. The folks who look after your aircraft appreciate as much extra information as you can give them.