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Australian non-commercial aviation - it has a problem


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IF RAAus trained LAME's you could forget servicing your own plane. As sure as night follows day. I'm not anti LAME just pro the OLD aims of OUR sport. which we seem to have lost (to some extent already). Nev

 

 

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  1. Getting paid a better-than-the-dole wage while undertaking training.
     
     

This, massive issue.

 

When I was young (Love cliches, I'm still waiting to jump into a taxi and scream follow that car!) after i left school and looking for a full time job/apprenticeship, I couldn't believe the Goverment was going to give me money for no reason. I got 3 weeks worth, it was very little and didn't feel right. I was over the moon to get a motorcycle mechanics apprenticeship.

 

Now it's enough money to pay for their mobile phone costs and more, and that's all many of them care about. A teenage girl merely has to bear 2 or 3 children and she's set for life, as is the father/boyfriend who, cough cough, doesn't live with her.

 

Apple just passed the Trillion dollar worth mark, first public company in history to do so, they grow while society gets smaller.

 

Dole payments should make life difficult, not easy.

 

 

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Why cant tradies do a conversion course to switch ove

It is quite possible. Under the VET There are a lot of what are called "training packages" that are common to all trades, for example, MEA101B - Interpret occupational health and safety practices in aviation maintenance. Replace "aviation maintenance" with the name of any other trade. The course content and requirements are the same. To complete a Cert IV qualification in aviation maintenance, a person who has gained a Cert IV qualification in an allied trade only has to do the training packages that are unique to the aviation maintenance qualification.

 

I have seen qualified motor mechanics come over into aviation maintenance and struggle. It seems that the modern way of keeping a car on the road is to Remove and Replace. Aviation maintenance engineers have to develop diagnostic skills without the aid of on-board monitors. I've seen an ex-car mechanic want to replace an alternator when the problem turned out to be a loose wire.

 

Not demeaning auto mechanics, but the animals and culture they were trained in is much different from that of aircraft mechanics. It takes the swap-over bloke a good while to come up to speed on aircraft.

 

BUT.

 

Please stay on track. The point I am trying to make is that this lack of training a new generation of engineers is a problem for everyone involved in sitting at the pointy end of an aircraft, no matter how big it is.The problem that needs to be addressed is the failure to produce qualified aircraft maintenance engineers. That is what we wing nuts should be telling everyone from the appropriate Federal Minister; local State and Federal Members, and the air travelling public

 

Let RAAus tackle the problem of who can do what to which plane. RAAus is not the body to train engineers. If they try to move away from the current L1 to L4 gradings to CASA standards, then that is the time to scream at RAAus.

 

 

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For light aircraft, approved owner maintenance is the way to go.

 

The current RAA approach of limiting owner maintenance is poor form (even stating in one case “to ensure employment for LAMEs????)

 

Rumour has it that a main instigator of this approach has left, but I stress it is only rumour at this stage and may turn out to be only wishful thinking.

 

 

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I am a 71yr old retired LAME, in the years that I worked on aircraft in Australia (Qld) I almost never worked with an Australian born and trained engineer (there were a couple!) I was Scottish born and BOAC trained and I worked with Dutchmen, South Africans and Rhodesians. It was only when I worked at Amberley for a company on contract to the RAAF that I worked with Australian aircraft mechanics, all ex RAAF. Interestingly, CASA don’t accept that they are qualified to work on GA???? I have to wonder why anyone would want to spend four years training to be a LAME to then work for fairly ordinary money in a high stress occupation where you sigh with relief when, with news of a plane crash, you realise it is not one of yours. I looked after a fleet of up to thirteen aircraft as a sole engineer with help only when our Seneca was in for service. Most of us ‘oldies’ worked as much for love of aircraft as for the money. I don’t think there are too many youngsters willing to do that anymore

 

 

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A few years ago Sporting Shooters Ass of Aust (200k members) realised that as a nation we were short of gunsmiths. They were going to pay to train people in the required trade (fitting and turning was one). This was advertised and was taken up as far as I know. Food for thought.

 

Ken

 

 

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From what I've seen over quite a few years now with maintenance people being sacked in large numbers or even leaving of their own volition to go with Companies importing Chinese machinery where you get better paid and looked after and don't have to sign your life away on some crap aeroplane. that is held together by it's reputation and the many coats of paint it has on it. I doubt the current CEO of Qantas has ever set foot in a maintenance facility. They pride themselves on not spending money in that area.. This is the new generation of "ignorant and removed" from the issues manager who pays themselves 20 million a year.. Accountancy qualifications and nothing else. I would NOT encourage any of my kids to seek work in aviation maintenance. It's a disgrace that I have to speak this way but I do have to. I've seen days when things were better and where dedicated and experienced people kept planes in the air and were a respected part of the team. I got something fixed in LAE,( PNG) that hadn't been picked up in 300 hours of mainland flying on one of the engines,. after it was installed, overhauled. The magneto wasn't timed to the correct cylinder. There is a "master rod. you use as reference. I reported observed symptoms and they trouble shot it at an a base where I would not have expected such skill. to be so readily supplied. Nev

 

 

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Boating is the alternative...

 

General Aviation in Australia is as good as dead and buried.

 

- CASA and it’s unworkable rules.

 

- Fuel companies withdrawing support from GA

 

- lack of maintenance orgs

 

- airports becoming very unfriendly towards anyone but airlines

 

 

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I have been trying to become accredited to maintain an experimental GA plane, with no result as there appears to be no reasonable pathway. Yet I could pass any exam or test, given the syllabus and some time to prepare.

 

RAAus could do more towards offering training in maintenance, and they could work with an accreditation authority if there was the right attitude on both sides. CASA is the current accreditation authority for aviation and I would hope that they would be helpful. After all, their jobs depend on aviation keeping going.

 

So how about we ask our RAAus board members to commission a syllabus etc that would get people to the standard of the CASA lame exam they use for immigrants? I am sure that many RAAus members would do this for the fun and satisfaction.

 

 

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I have been trying to become accredited to maintain an experimental GA plane, with no result as there appears to be no reasonable pathway. Yet I could pass any exam or test, given the syllabus and some time to prepare. RAAus could do more towards offering training in maintenance, and they could work with an accreditation authority if there was the right attitude on both sides. CASA is the current accreditation authority for aviation and I would hope that they would be helpful. After all, their jobs depend on aviation keeping going.

So how about we ask our RAAus board members to commission a syllabus etc that would get people to the standard of the CASA lame exam they use for immigrants? I am sure that many RAAus members would do this for the fun and satisfaction.

You need to ask your RAA company now.

 

 

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I have been trying to become accredited to maintain an experimental GA plane, with no result as there appears to be no reasonable pathway. Yet I could pass any exam or test, given the syllabus and some time to prepare.RAAus could do more towards offering training in maintenance, and they could work with an accreditation authority if there was the right attitude on both sides. CASA is the current accreditation authority for aviation and I would hope that they would be helpful. After all, their jobs depend on aviation keeping going.

So how about we ask our RAAus board members to commission a syllabus etc that would get people to the standard of the CASA lame exam they use for immigrants? I am sure that many RAAus members would do this for the fun and satisfaction.

Re: accreditation to maintain aircraft you have not built

 

SAAA made noises about trying to get CASA to do something similar in about 2008 or 9 and it was squashed very rapidly. ( As a result we have lost a few members who found it just too expensive and too hard to continue with LAME maintanence)

 

Re: CASA jobs depending on our presence.

 

Nope not all. As long as they have commercial airlines the rest of us are an annoyance whose crashes bring light to the fact they have not made the skies safe. If they get rid of us the skies are empty and safe and they can concentrate on rewriting the rules every week for the airlines.

 

 

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I have been trying to become accredited to maintain an experimental GA plane, with no result as there appears to be no reasonable pathway. Yet I could pass any exam or test, given the syllabus and some time to prepare. RAAus could do more towards offering training in maintenance, and they could work with an accreditation authority if there was the right attitude on both sides. CASA is the current accreditation authority for aviation and I would hope that they would be helpful. After all, their jobs depend on aviation keeping going.

So how about we ask our RAAus board members to commission a syllabus etc that would get people to the standard of the CASA lame exam they use for immigrants? I am sure that many RAAus members would do this for the fun and satisfaction.

Bruce, if you didn't build the aircraft or one similiar and have not completed the SAAA Maintenance Procedures Course then it won't happen. I have a friend who has built many RV's and still takes his aircraft to a LAME to do the engine as he did not build/assemble 50% of the engine.

 

 

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Re: CASA jobs depending on our presence.

Nope not all. As long as they have commercial airlines the rest of us are an annoyance whose crashes bring light to the fact they have not made the skies safe. If they get rid of us the skies are empty and safe and they can concentrate on rewriting the rules every week for the airlines.

CASA have SAOs who administer recreational aviation, but there continues to be confusion among the participants.

It's like the skinniest piglet squealing for the hind tit when the sow has been trucked of to the abattoirs and there is a tank full of milk in the feeder.

 

An SAO can have its members maintain their own aircraft, or train, audit, and take responsibility for paid maintainers, or both.

 

You (or in RAA case, your company) are in charge of the lolly shop.

 

 

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I have seen qualified motor mechanics come over into aviation maintenance and struggle. It seems that the modern way of keeping a car on the road is to Remove and Replace. Aviation maintenance engineers have to develop diagnostic skills without the aid of on-board monitors. I've seen an ex-car mechanic want to replace an alternator when the problem turned out to be a loose wire.

Not demeaning auto mechanics, but the animals and culture they were trained in is much different from that of aircraft mechanics. It takes the swap-over bloke a good while to come up to speed on aircraft.

 

BUT.

 

Please stay on track. The point I am trying to make is that this lack of training a new generation of engineers is a problem for everyone involved in sitting at the pointy end of an aircraft, no matter how big it is.The problem that needs to be addressed is the failure to produce qualified aircraft maintenance engineers. That is what we wing nuts should be telling everyone from the appropriate Federal Minister; local State and Federal Members, and the air travelling public

Look at the end of the day - attitude is everything, sounds like the shortage is produced in house.

 

P.S. I'll stop replying because you have had the final say - no need to digress further and explore options surrounding other trades coming across. You are going to struggle getting them when mining as screaming for Fitters and Sparkies and there base rate is $130k with ability to climb into the first tier of management for $165k p.a (The kicker is they are happy to take green skins with very little experience and the work isn't FIFO).... Would you rather work on a $80,000 Cessna or a 17 million dollar Leibherr 9800? the answer is simple.... who pays the best?

 

Stomping you feet and huffing loudly at your local member is going to do nothing. They have bigger fish to fry.

 

 

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It's a disgrace that I have to speak this way but I do have to. I've seen days when things were better and where dedicated and experienced people kept planes in the air and were a respected part of the team. I got something fixed in LAE,( PNG) that hadn't been picked up in 300 hours of mainland flying on one of the engines,. after it was installed, overhauled. The magneto wasn't timed to the correct cylinder. There is a "master rod. you use as reference. I reported observed symptoms and they trouble shot it at an a base where I would not have expected such skill. to be so readily supplied. Nev

Some young blokes think that timing a Magneto means using a stopwatch at an X-Men sprint race.

 

250px-MagnetoYardin.png

 

 

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I don't know how modern motor mechanics work, but in my day it was all diagnostics. There wasn't enough money around to replace everything. I must admit that the diagnostic abilities died off in the sixties. I must also admit that my diagnostic abilities of modern electronicly controlled equipment is sadly very lacking.

 

I used to enjoy listening to car owners tales of woe at the agents poor diagnostics and then go and fix the problem easily.

 

One example, a Holden that used to take off rapidly, then die and just before stopping it would take off again. I had to lift the bonnet to see that fault. A loose coil, moving and shorting out.

 

 

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I don't know how modern motor mechanics work, but in my day it was all diagnostics. There wasn't enough money around to replace everything. I must admit that the diagnostic abilities died off in the sixties. I must also admit that my diagnostic abilities of modern electronicly controlled equipment is sadly very lacking.I used to enjoy listening to car owners tales of woe at the agents poor diagnostics and then go and fix the problem easily.

One example, a Holden that used to take off rapidly, then die and just before stopping it would take off again. I had to lift the bonnet to see that fault. A loose coil, moving and shorting out.

You can still do that today.

OBD-1 (On Board Diagnostics version 1) was the first system, and each manufacturer designed their own

 

You can buy the diagnostic tools from Ebay.

 

Pretty soon they realised it would be better if there was a universal system.

 

OBD-2

 

This is the current system; you can buy the tools, including programs to show what's happening live on a laptop just like the F1 guys.

 

There's even a kit and Iphone app that allows you to diagnose and can tell you if the fuel cap isn't screwed tight.

 

Also, everyone's an actor these days. I couldn't find the windscreen wiper motor (which had failed) on one car, Googled the problem and after deconstructing the car between the windscreen and the motor had the new motor in and all the panels and screws back in place within about three hours, avoiding the knuckle skinning and thread stripping sequences. I did that after getting a quote from the dealer which left me gasping for air.

 

 

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