Duncan Aviation logo
«Summer 2007

Simplifying A Puzzle of Complexity


The Art of Minimizing Downtime

Ever put together a 1,000 piece puzzle with no straight-edge pieces or picture on the box? What if you only had a couple of hours to finish and the pieces kept changing shape? Sounds a little daunting, if not impossible. Yet this is the daily scenario for Duncan Aviation’s Doug Schmitt and Brian Barto. As the Operations Planning Coordinators for Duncan Aviation in Lincoln, NE, and Battle Creek, MI (respectively), they identify, gather and put together all the loose pieces of every aircraft maintenance event at Duncan Aviation and determine downtime. On any given day, they may have 35-40 schedules to plan. So Doug and Brian are not alone; they each have assembled an experienced team that is aware of every shop’s maintenance capabilities and the capacity of work that can be expected. They are connected to Project Managers, Team Leaders and Technical Representatives and are able to access the work required, the manpower necessary and the time needed to satisfy the customer’s need for the shortest downtime possible while maintaining the quality of work for which Duncan Aviation has become known.

Because of the hard work these teams do prior to every customer’s arrival, all the factory-trained technicians assigned are knowledgeable and well-prepared to begin work immediately upon touchdown with all necessary tools and parts assembled. This is a result of hours of Learjet team members being in constant communication with each other, making sure that all work is done in the most efficient time, with no overlaps and minimal interruptions.

“Duncan Aviation is very aware that downtime is important to customers. Because we are a full-service maintenance facility, we have the advantage of doing all that is required under one roof in the shortest amount of time,” said Brad Lennemann, Airframe Service Sales Representative. “Our one-stop-shop ability reduces downtime, increases efficiency and saves our customers money.”

Very few facilities can offer the same amount of quality services that Duncan Aviation delivers everyday. “Our capabilities are so inclusive that many smaller FBO operations send us work they do not have capabilities to perform,” said Mike Healzer, Turbine Engine Sales Representative. “For example, we specialize in MPIs on the TFE731 engine having invested in all Honeywell approved repairs and the necessary tooling. We are able to perform in-house blade change and balances, turbine nozzle flow checks and NDT. All this on top of our 25 years of experience allows us to perform this work in as little as five days, in most situations. It is difficult for others to match our expertise, capabilities and downtime.”

Another example is when a customer chooses a discounted vendor to repaint their aircraft but isn’t aware, until it is too late that they are not equipped to perform the FAA test that is required after every paint event and before the aircraft is allowed to fly. Suddenly the “great deal” isn’t so great and the plane is grounded not producing revenue. In this situation, Duncan Aviation has been called to come on-site to provide the necessary testing to get the customer in the air again. In the long-run, Duncan Aviation would have had them flying a lot sooner with less hassle.

There is no simple solution to keeping an aircraft airworthy. The regularly scheduled maintenance events and those that are not expected all add to the cost of doing business by air. As an aircraft operator as well as a service provider, Duncan Aviation understands the daily complexities and has already anticipated your needs before you have. We make it our business to take the complicated puzzle of aircraft operation and ownership and make it as simple as possible for the customer. The best and most economic choice for maintenance events, all the time, every time is Duncan Aviation. The years of experience and the long list of capabilities at all of our facilities has proven that when we promise to do a job, we are promising to deliver on time, at a fair price, and with the highest quality of work. This isn’t a random guess disguised as a promise; it is the expert opinion of team members who make it their job to know.