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Posted: 2/26/2006 7:17:31 AM EDT
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:19:18 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 7:22:08 AM EDT by Flakchak]

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



Because the pilot is ultimately responsible for the plane. He's the one that's going to be flying it.

Think about it this way. You and your buddy are shooting. You wanna take a look at his pistol. He clears it. Then hands it to you. Then you procede to clear it. Do you not trust him? No, you're just being responsible and safe. He may be the best when it comes to pistol safety, but you're responsible to make sure your handling a safe weapon.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:22:33 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:23:45 AM EDT
It's called a Pre-Flight Inspection.

In the civilian world it's required by the FAA.

In the Military world it's required by regulations.


As far as the Navy / Marines go an aircraft is inspected at least 4 times before a flight.

You have a daily / turn-around inspection (two in one).
The Plane Captain's pre-flight inspection.
The Pilot / Aircrew pre-flight inspection.

Most of the time the pre-flight walk-around inspection makes sure that there are still wings and wheels on the aircraft.

Shit happens, it also looks to make sure there are no fuel leaks, oil / hydraulic leaks, no open panels, nothing falling off the airframe, nothing in the intake of the engine, nothing left laying around on the ground.

Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:26:34 AM EDT
Because some of the people working on the plane that carries his ass make +\- 20k a year.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:29:00 AM EDT
As Flakchack said, the pilot is ultimately responsible. The more people that look at something as complex as an aircraft, the greater chance any problem will be spotted. The personnel who are in that business, whether military or civilian, are responsible and professsional, and don't give it any negative thought.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:29:57 AM EDT
Its not an issue of the pilot doesn't "trust" the crew/crew chief. The pilot just has the final sign-off after inspecting the crews work.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:32:00 AM EDT
Because mehcanics are union!
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:32:45 AM EDT
Makes sense. I was too shy to ask one of the guys and would have felt like an idiot asking such a question.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:32:48 AM EDT

Originally Posted By vengarr:
Because mehcanics are union!



MILITARY
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:34:26 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:35:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By KA3B:

Originally Posted By vengarr:
Because mehcanics are union!



MILITARY



that was a joke. (i think)

Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:36:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 7:38:24 AM EDT by DarkNite]
I was reading about the Swiss Air Force and how as a point of trust the pilots leave the final inspection to the plane captain (chief mechanic).

The article went on to say that the Swiss are very perfidious in their maintenance. A gripe that would be noted for eventual care in the US would ground a Swiss F/A-18.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:40:20 AM EDT
Sometimes the Daily/Turnaround is performed up to 24 hours in advance of takeoff time. Aircraft can develop leaks or something could have been place in a location it should not be in the interim.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:42:09 AM EDT
It's in the check list.
You'd be surprised how many cowlings and REMOVE BEFORE FLIGHT items
were found duiring the pilot's preflight inspection.

B_S
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:42:15 AM EDT

Originally Posted By H46Driver:
Sometimes the Daily/Turnaround is performed up to 24 hours in advance of takeoff time. Aircraft can develop leaks or something could have been place in a location it should not be in the interim.



Daily = 72 hours or last flight of the day
Turnaround - 24 hours

Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:44:14 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



What did you do as a 'wing Marine'? Obviously you were not involved in maintenance, or else you wouldn't be asking....

I was a Harrier mech for 11 years. Had my low power qual, CD/QAR and so on.... I took my preturn inspections pretty seriously. I knew a few guys who relied on others to to the preturn inspection (which is the same as the preflight), and tore up a few motors because the intake blanks were left in. Also had to replace a few panels for the same reason.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:44:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue_Suiter:
It's in the check list.
You'd be surprised how many cowlings and REMOVE BEFORE FLIGHT items
were found duiring the pilot's preflight inspection.

B_S



For the Navy/Marines the RBF tags and landing gear pins are the last item to be pulled AFTER the final checkers have looked the aircraft over, meaning that the aircraft is either waiting to take the taxi-way or else be released for the cat shot.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:50:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By KA3B:

Originally Posted By H46Driver:
Sometimes the Daily/Turnaround is performed up to 24 hours in advance of takeoff time. Aircraft can develop leaks or something could have been place in a location it should not be in the interim.



Daily = 72 hours or last flight of the day
Turnaround - 24 hours




I can't even count the number of sailors that I asked that question of when I was a Detachment DivO, Line DivO, AMO, and MO.

I have launched one time without preflighting. The bird was DTA'd, folded, and stuffed and the ship thought that they had an actual man overboard at 2130. Launched on goggs at 2141. Not bad for a folded/stuffed Frog and a crew not on SAR alert.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:55:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DarkNite:
I was reading about the Swiss Air Force and how as a point of trust the pilots leave the final inspection to the plane captain (chief mechanic).



For the Navy and Marine Corps the Plane Captain does the actual final inspection of the aircraft, meaning opening panels up.

When I was a Plane Captain NO ONE touched the aircraft after I had completed my daily/turnaround inspection and before the pilot had signed for the aircraft unless they came and talked to me first.

For some type aircraft the different shops come out to do a portion of the daily inspection, ie mechs do engine inspections, electricians do electrical/lighting checks, etc etc.

The Plane Captain is the one who puts his/her name on the daily/turnaround inspection sheet that states that they have completed or have inspected all areas and items on the checklist.

The Maintenance Chief / Gunny signs that all inspections have been signed for and that the aircraft is fueled/loaded in accordance with the mission and that it is within weight and balance limits.

The pilot signs for the aircraft, that he has reviewed the logbook and is satisfied with the aircraft.
Most pilot/aircrew preflight inspections do not have the pilots/aircrew opening panels or getting into an in-depth inspection.

Like I said, wheels and wings, kick the tires and light the fires, let's go flying.


Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:57:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DarkNite:
I was reading about the Swiss Air Force and how as a point of trust the pilots leave the final inspection to the plane captain (chief mechanic).




I have heard this is done in other Air Forces too. Hence my question.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 7:59:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By H46Driver:
I have launched one time without preflighting. The bird was DTA'd, folded, and stuffed and the ship thought that they had an actual man overboard at 2130. Launched on goggs at 2141. Not bad for a folded/stuffed Frog and a crew not on SAR alert.



Did you let the aircrew/ground maintainers or duty HAC start the APU and spread the blades?
When I was at NAS Whidbey SAR sometimes the backup H-3 aircrew would have the backup SAR bird on the spot with the engines turning (rotors not engaged) waiting for the Pilots and Corpsmen.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:02:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hydguy:

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



What did you do as a 'wing Marine'? Obviously you were not involved in maintenance, or else you wouldn't be asking....

I was a Harrier mech for 11 years. Had my low power qual, CD/QAR and so on.... I took my preturn inspections pretty seriously. I knew a few guys who relied on others to to the preturn inspection (which is the same as the preflight), and tore up a few motors because the intake blanks were left in. Also had to replace a few panels for the same reason.



I was a 6821, Weather Observer.

We used to loose 3 or 4 AV-8A Harriers a year at Cherry Point. I saw two crash as I was out making WX observations. The damn things just seemed to fall out of the sky...
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:04:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
We used to loose 3 or 4 AV-8A Harriers a year at Cherry Point. I saw two crash as I was out making WX observations. The damn things just seemed to fall out of the sky...



Single engine military aircraft suck.
Same thing used to happen with the A-7 and F-8.
Lose an engine and ooops....
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:09:27 AM EDT

Originally Posted By H46Driver:
Sometimes the Daily/Turnaround is performed up to 24 hours in advance of takeoff time. Aircraft can develop leaks or something could have been place in a location it should not be in the interim.



AS long as it's leaking, there is still fluid in it!!!!

That was one of the things I remember from the CH-46 guys, if it ain't leaking, you are in trouble!!!
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:13:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 8:13:42 AM EDT by Fly-Navy]
Of course we trust the plane captain... but they're human, and so are the people that do the 72 and 24 hour turnarounds. People miss shit. Guess who dies if the plane captain misses something important, or maybe something trivial that could lead to a mishap? Not the plane captain...
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:13:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 8:14:55 AM EDT by Hydguy]

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:

Originally Posted By Hydguy:

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



What did you do as a 'wing Marine'? Obviously you were not involved in maintenance, or else you wouldn't be asking....

I was a Harrier mech for 11 years. Had my low power qual, CD/QAR and so on.... I took my preturn inspections pretty seriously. I knew a few guys who relied on others to to the preturn inspection (which is the same as the preflight), and tore up a few motors because the intake blanks were left in. Also had to replace a few panels for the same reason.



I was a 6821, Weather Observer.

We used to loose 3 or 4 AV-8A Harriers a year at Cherry Point. I saw two crash as I was out making WX observations. The damn things just seemed to fall out of the sky...



When were you there? I left CP in 2002. The last bird lost there was in'01, a T-bird coming back from a cross country training sorite. THe instructor pilot was a man I knew well, from serving with him at VMA-231 for years.

I know 4 pilots who have been killed flying the Harrier, not including the trainee in the last one, because I had never met him. I have worked quite a few reclamations, 6 or 7. Can't remember the exact number.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 8:22:45 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 8:26:29 AM EDT by AyeGuy]

Originally Posted By Hydguy:

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:

Originally Posted By Hydguy:

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



What did you do as a 'wing Marine'? Obviously you were not involved in maintenance, or else you wouldn't be asking....

I was a Harrier mech for 11 years. Had my low power qual, CD/QAR and so on.... I took my preturn inspections pretty seriously. I knew a few guys who relied on others to to the preturn inspection (which is the same as the preflight), and tore up a few motors because the intake blanks were left in. Also had to replace a few panels for the same reason.



I was a 6821, Weather Observer.

We used to loose 3 or 4 AV-8A Harriers a year at Cherry Point. I saw two crash as I was out making WX observations. The damn things just seemed to fall out of the sky...



When were you there? I left CP in 2002. The last bird lost there was in'01, a T-bird coming back from a cross country training sorite. THe instructor pilot was a man I knew well, from serving with him at VMA-231 for years.

I know 4 pilots who have been killed flying the Harrier, not including the trainee in the last one, because I had never met him. I have worked quite a few reclamations, 6 or 7. Can't remember the exact number.



I was at MCAS Cherry Point from 1983-1987. The reason I know how many birds went down (aside from watching as they fell from the sky) was that we were the first people they came to to try to fix the blame; i.e. we gave out the wrong altimeter setting or other met dope (which we never did) and we had to file an Aircraft Mishap weather report. That, and the loud "Launch Pedro!" calls on the radio/intercom...

The AV-8B was a huge inmprovement though. Not nearly as many of those fell out of the sky.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 9:31:15 AM EDT
Ahh... the ol' AV8-C. Yea, the A's and C's were pretty sketchy birds. Were you there when the A bird went through the MALS hunger upside down?
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 9:35:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:

I was a 6821, Weather Observer.

We used to loose 3 or 4 AV-8A Harriers a year at Cherry Point. I saw two crash as I was out making WX observations. The damn things just seemed to fall out of the sky...



The Harriers had the most nasty accident rate out all the planes in service. Its hard to fly and way too complicated mechanically. They had one where the pilot punched out and the damn thing flew itself for awhile and crashed into the ocean.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 9:42:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CajunMojo:
Because some of the people working on the plane that carries his ass make +\- 20k a year.



That reminds me of what my dad said about his job, quality control for small jet aircraft parts. One bad part can ruin your whole day up there.....

Vendors, some at least, were a little annoyed when he rejected a batch and put deliveries behind.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 10:00:13 AM EDT
Mr. Magic says " Things double checked rarely go astray".

I worked on motorcycles for a living for about 20 yrs. The golden rule was the mechanic ALWAYS test rode the bike before giving it back to the customer. No matter how trivial the job. Bikes are kinda like planes, the least little cock up can kill you and the mechanic that rides a LOT everyday is more likely going to be able to deal with it.

rj
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 10:36:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2006 10:40:23 AM EDT by PeteCO]

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



That's exactly what they are saying. If if someone were to preflight my little Piper for me, you can bet your ass it's still getting a preflight from me. Including the CIGFTPS stuff like checking control movement and flaps settings before takeoff, even if I KNOW I just checked that stuff.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 10:43:49 AM EDT
If you would not do a walk around on your aircraft hey it's your life, Do waht you want with it!
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 10:50:30 AM EDT
The simple reason: The more sets of eyes that you have looking for problems, the less likely it that problems will be missed.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 10:55:49 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Fly-Navy:
Of course we trust the plane captain... but they're human, and so are the people that do the 72 and 24 hour turnarounds. People miss shit. Guess who dies if the plane captain misses something important, or maybe something trivial that could lead to a mishap? Not the plane captain...



That's why you fly in an aircraft that has Enlisted Aircrew.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 11:18:09 AM EDT
With the F-15E, not only does the pilot do the walk around, but the WSO as well, again the more sets of eyes you can get the better. We also have certain settings that need to be checked that the crew chief might not know ahead of time, (i.e. combat or training laser and IFF codes).
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 12:09:10 PM EDT
Those AF guys are real jokers... I think the pilot is just checking to make sure noone taped a "KICK ME " sign anywhere on the craft....
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 12:12:33 PM EDT
The better question is, do you do a walk around of your vehicle before you drive it?

If not you should. I do a walk around of my vehicle every morning. You never know what has found its way around/under your vehilce.

They do a walk around for safety's sake. Don't you want to make sure your equipment is safe to operate?
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 12:16:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Combatvet:

... I do a walk around of my vehicle every morning. You never know what has found its way around/under your vehilce...



+1
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 12:22:22 PM EDT
You would be surprised about what you would find on an airplane after other people have done pre-flight.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 12:52:41 PM EDT
It's amazing but with all the checks stuff is still missed occasionally. I 've seen planes taxing trailing ground cords At Red Flag we saw a Thunderbird taxi by to the hammer head with a set of ear defenders on the wing tip rail , the pilot did notice it and they had to stop so someone could get them....All stuff the crew chiefs & pilots should have caught..
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 1:02:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hydguy:

Originally Posted By H46Driver:
Sometimes the Daily/Turnaround is performed up to 24 hours in advance of takeoff time. Aircraft can develop leaks or something could have been place in a location it should not be in the interim.



AS long as it's leaking, there is still fluid in it!!!!

That was one of the things I remember from the CH-46 guys, if it ain't leaking, you are in trouble!!!



Yeah, but sometimes enterprising folks will mop up puddles - then you don't know how much is left in a reservoir before you launch.

My launch without preflight was a big wakeup call and teaching point for my detachment's plane captains - at least the non-aircrew PCs.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 1:03:23 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 1:10:15 PM EDT
Who knows where I've seen it, but somewhere floating around was the story of the AF Pilot that never did a pre-flight. Always said he trusted his crews. So one day they get his airplane all ready for him (minus the engine) and he gets in and never notices until he hits the start button!

(I know that's the short of it, but it makes for a good story.)

Gus
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 1:45:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hydguy:
Ahh... the ol' AV8-C. Yea, the A's and C's were pretty sketchy birds. Were you there when the A bird went through the MALS hunger upside down?



I didn't hear about that one.

The first one I witnessed was when I was out taking a regular hourly weather observation; I was twirling my sling psychrometer, watching a TAV-8A Harrier trainer hovering about 20 meters off the deck about 100 meters away. The power just quit and the aircraft fell out of the sky. The gear was down but they collapsed; both guys got out okay.

The second mishap I saw was also while I was out taking an ob. This was an AV-8B; it was on approach doing a short length landing and was about 200m off the deck about 800m away down the runway when again the engine quit and the aircraft fell out of the sky. It was no more than 30m off the deck when the pilot punched out; his rocket seat took him up about 500m. I saw him a few minutes later when Crash Rescue brought him in and he was white as a ghost.


I enjoyed reading the TFOE Reports (Things Falling Off Aircraft)...lots of crazy stuff there.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 2:23:19 PM EDT
All good pilots check out their plane before flight.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 3:38:43 PM EDT
The pilots are looking for those "remove before flight" pins and tags.

On one of the early demo flights of the B-17 it crashed on takeoff. They failed to remove the elevator locks.

The plane was deemed so complex they invented the "preflight checklist" of items to check before takeoff.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 4:46:58 PM EDT
You know what really spooks me?

I've never seen a commercial pilot, copilot, or any of the actual flight-deck crew preflight an airliner or a cargo liner.

Do they seriously trust the guys on the ground with the .99 cent flashlights and the minimum-wage-plus-five-cents paycheck?
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 4:49:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AyeGuy:
I did four years as a wing Marine and one thing I was always curious about was the pilot walk-around. My thought was: "Don't they trust the crew cheif to do his job?". It seems to me to be a team-breaker to say in effect: "Sure I trust you cheif...but I really don't"...



Because 2 {or more} sets of eyes are better than 1 set. YMMV.
Link Posted: 2/26/2006 4:52:31 PM EDT
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