August 2019

Byerly Aviation Supports the Troops

Twin Commander Authorized Service Center Byerly Aviation recently pulled together all its resources and supported three military charter flights. Members of the Illinois National Guard were headed from Byerly’s location in Peoria, Illinois, to Biggs Army Airfield at Fort Bliss, Texas, for training. Soon after the units are scheduled to head to Afghanistan. Byerly Line Service Manager Chuck Atkins said 12 of Byerly’s 13 line staff worked the charters, which were Airbus A-320s from Allegiant Airlines. The team fueled one aircraft and loaded around 450 soldiers and their bags and equipment between the three flights. “It was an all-hands-on-deck type of operation,” Atkins said. Military charters are one of many services Byerly Aviation offers in Peoria. They also sell, service, and upgrade Twin Commanders, service other makes and models, run a full-service FBO, and have the local airline fuel contract.

Twin Commanders Serve During Fire Season

The North American fire season is in full swing. That means across the continent there are dozens of Twin Commanders going to work helping to support aerial firefighting efforts. Twin Commanders are a favorite bird-dog platform. On a fire the Twin Commander is typically crewed by an experienced pilot and an Air Attack officer. Together they scope out a fire’s footprint and help the tankers fly the correct paths through the blaze. It’s a testament to the strength of the airframe that the conditions are often marginal VFR, turbulent, and sometimes at low altitude. While August is typically the most active fire month Conair’s Jeff Berry says things have been slightly below average in much of Canada and the United States, with the exception of Alaska and the Yukon. Conair operates eight Twin Commanders. These airplanes help maintain a dispatch rate of more than 98 percent. Not only are they reliable performers, Berry says, they also shuttle parts in AOG situations, helping the rest of the fleet stay in the air.

Airborne Support Adds 500B to Fleet

Houma, Louisiana-based Airborne Support has added a Twin Commander 500B to its fleet of oil spill response aircraft. Based deep on the Mississippi Delta, Airborne Support flies a variety of piston and turbine aircraft to help oil clean-up efforts. Large air tankers with 1,200 or 2,000 gallons of dispersant help to contain and clean spills, an operation that’s coordinated from a Twin Commander. Typically the company uses a 690 in the spotter and coordination role, but President Brad Barker said they needed a backup for when the 690 is undergoing an inspection or when things get really busy. He said they turned to another Commander because there is no better choice for their mission, which includes long stretches over water up to 200 miles offshore, and a need for great forward and downward visibility. Bruce Byerly found the 500B for Airborne Support, and helped prepare it for the demanding new role.

Longtime Twin Commander Guru Morris Kernick Dies

Robert DeLaurentis, left, and Morris Kernick, right check out DeLaurentis’ Twin Commander.

Morris Kernick, the Stockton, California-based Twin Commander expert, died this month after an illness. Kernick was well known in the Twin Commander community for his expertise, flying adventures, and his eagerness to pass on knowledge to owners. Kernick began Commander Services in 1977 and came to be seen as a great resource for all types of Commanders, both piston and turbine. Twin Commander owner Robert DeLaurentis, who is planning to fly his airplane around the world, posted a video to YouTube two years ago about his relationship with Kenrick. He said Kernick was a patient teacher. “It’s great to be around someone who is willing to share all his knowledge like he does.” Many friends and longtime customers shared remembrances on Facebook. Jim Metzger said he had many fun flying adventures with Kernick, including ferrying a resurrected Twin Commander from Alaska to Alabama where they dodged unhappy FBO managers and even an F-15 due to a flight plan mix-up. “I miss you Morris,” he said.

 

July 2019

Ike’s Bird to Be at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

You may think of Air Force One as the massive and imposing Boeing 747, but that name is reserved for any aircraft on which the President of the United States is currently a passenger. Back in the 1950s, Air Force One was often an Aero Commander 560A carrying President Dwight Eisenhower back and forth between Washington, D.C. and a grass strip on his farm near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Eisenhower even flew the aircraft at times. The Commemorative Air Force recently purchased the aircraft and is displaying it at this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh.

 

Visit Eagle Creek Aviation at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

If you are a current Eagle Creek Aviation Services, Naples Jet Center, or First Wing Jet Center customer, or are curious about what a Twin Commander Authorized Service Center can do for you, make sure to visit them at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh next week. The company will be displaying some of its panel upgrade capabilities at Booth #395 near Boeing Plaza along the flightline. They are also holding a cookout for friends and family on Tuesday evening in Camp Scholler. You’re invited to come by and meet the folks at Eagle Creek, Naples Jet Center, and First Wing Jet Center. RSVP here .

 

Summer Issue of Flight Levels in the Mail and Online

The Summer issue of Flight Levels is in the mail, and Flight Levels Online is now available. This issue we take you across the Atlantic with friends, through Central and South America with an owner, inside Twin Commander Authorized Service Center Aero Air, through the ins and outs of the Garmin touchscreen navigators, in-depth on a consequential tax case, and much more. Read it today .

 

POLL: Why Trust Your Commander to a TCASC?

Last time we asked how many of you use a Twin Commander Authorized Service Center for your maintenance, repair, and upgrade needs. Half of you said you frequent one of these high-quality independently operated facilities.

This month we want to know why you trust your aircraft to a Twin Commander Authorized Service Center.

 

Go To POLL

 


May 2019

Turn to Eagle Creek Aviation Services as Your Race Headquarters

They call it the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. This year’s Indianapolis 500 is the 103rd running of the iconic race, and Eagle Creek Aviation at Eagle Creek Airpark is a perfect base to enjoy the weekend. This Friday through Sunday will bring hundreds of thousands of spectators to Indianapolis. With a Twin Commander you can beat the crowd and land at Eagle Creek’s 4,200-foot runway. Only five miles from the track, EYE is the closest airport to the action.
The Factory Authorized Service Center has ample parking, an adjacent restaurant, and full concierge services. Make your reservations today.

POLL: Who Does Your Periodic Inspections?

The inspection requirement for Twin Commanders is a generous 150 hours time in service, or annually, whichever comes first. We’re interested in hearing where you have your Commander inspected. Please choose one of the following. Thanks for participating.

GO TO POLL

 

Twin Commander Has Two Free SB241 Kits to Give Away

Could You Be One of the Recipients?

 Twin Commander owners who have not yet complied with Service Bulletin 241 affecting certain models can now receive a free service bulletin compliance kit from Twin Commander Aircraft. The kit has a value of $16,325 and includes the major components necessary to complete SB241, which is a compliance method for FAA Airworthiness Directive 2013-09-05 addressing potential cracking in the aft pressure bulkhead. SB241 and the AD apply to 690/A/B model Twin Commanders. Later-model Twin Commanders –– 690C/Ds and 695/A/Bs –– have a different wing-to-fuselage design and are not affected by the service bulletin or AD.

To be eligible for a donated kit an owner must acquire the kit and have it installed at one of 13 Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Center facilities, a worldwide network dedicated to Twin Commander service, sales, and support. Only two kits are available, so hurry to get yours and upgrade your Twin Commander.

Here’s a list of Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Centers.

April 2019

Maintenance Training Session a Success

One of the great benefits of owning and operating a Twin Commander is a robust network of Factory Authorized Service Centers. Service center maintenance is of a high standard in part because maintenance technicians attend type-specific training. The training, offered twice a year through Eagle Creek Aviation Services, is an eight-day course specific to the various models of Twin Commanders. The spring session was a big success, with two mechanics taking part in an on-site class at Eagle Creek, and nine attending at an operator’s facility in Canada. Mike Grabbe, a Twin Commander expert, wrote the course and teaches it through a series of classroom and hands-on aids. “Most mechanics are tactile learners,” he said. The sessions held at Eagle Creek in Indianapolis have the advantage of accessing aircraft in all states of repair or refurbishment. While the class is geared toward maintainers, Grabbe has had pilots attend in the past. He said most attendees have been techs for at least two years.

The next class is scheduled for November 4 through 13. Contact Mike Grabbe at [email protected] for more information.

Have You Seen the Latest Issue of Flight Levels Online?


What do a former professional basketball player, a flight to the Galapagos Islands, and the Garmin G950 have in common? They are all features in the latest issue of Flight Levels Online. The spring issue is out now, featuring John Hummer, a former NBA basketball player, successful venture capitalist, and now passionate Twin Commander owner.
Read about Hummer’s interesting use of the airplane.
Also in this issue:

and more.

Twin Commander Supporting Fleet with Free SB241 Kits


Twin Commander owners who have not yet complied with Service Bulletin 241 affecting certain models can now receive a free service bulletin compliance kit from Twin Commander aircraft. The kit has a value of $16,325 and includes the major components necessary to complete SB241, which is a compliance method for FAA Airworthiness Directive 2013-09-05 addressing potential cracking in the aft pressure bulkhead. SB241, and the A.D., apply to 690/A/B model Twin Commanders. Later-model Twin Commanders –– 690C/Ds and 695/A/Bs –– have a different wing-to-fuselage design and are not affected by the service bulletin or A.D.

To be eligible for a donated kit an owner must acquire the kit and have it installed at one of 13 Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Center facilities, a worldwide network dedicated to Twin Commander service, sales, and support. Only two kits are available, so hurry to get yours and upgrade your Twin Commander.

Here’s a list of Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Centers.

Owners Excited About Possible Twin Commander Gathering

Last month we asked how likely you are to attend a Twin Commander gathering, the planning for which is just beginning. Based on the strong response—53 percent said they were very likely to attend and an additional 37 percent said they were likely to attend—Twin Commander Aircraft has decided to continue detailed planning for the gathering. Stay tuned for announcements on dates and location.

Feb/Mar 2019

Twin Commander Reaffirms Commitment to Fleet Safety with 2 Free SB241 Kits

FAA Airworthiness Directive 2013-09-05 is a mandatory maintenance item for owners of Twin Commander 690/A/B models to repair cracks in the aft pressure bulkhead. Owners who have not yet complied with Service Bulletin 241, the AD’s compliance method, can now receive a free kit donated from Twin Commander Aircraft. The kit has a value of $16,325 and includes the major structural components necessary to complete the service bulletin, which addresses potential cracking in the aft pressure bulkhead.

To be eligible for a donated kit an owner must order the kit and have it installed at one of 14 Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Center facilities, a worldwide network dedicated to Twin Commander service, sales, and support. There will only be two kits made available for this offer. Here’s a list of Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Centers . Contact your Factory Authorized Service Center for complete offer details.

Twin Commander Now Offering an Extended Windshield Warranty


Twin Commander Aircraft is offering owners a significantly extended pro-rated factory warranty on replacement windshields purchased and installed through the Factory Authorized Service Center network. All new windshield purchases and installations completed at one of 14 Factory Authorized Service Centers worldwide will come with a 36-month pro-rata warranty that now almost doubles the previous warranty values.

Here’s a list of Factory Authorized Twin Commander Service Centers.

POLL: Come Gather with Other Twin Commander Owners

Twin Commander Aircraft is considering holding a gathering later this year of owners, service providers, and supporters of Twin Commanders. The event is expected to take place in September or October in a location that is easy to reach from both coasts.

The gathering would feature social events with other Twin Commander owners and operators, informative Twin Commander operating and maintenance sessions, and an airport display of owner and service center aircraft. It would take place over three days including travel time to and from the event.

View Poll

A Twin Commander in the Texas Hills

The Flying L Ranch was once a thriving fly-in community in the Texas Hills north of San Antonio. Unfortunately for pilots, the Flying L is now a resort and dude ranch sans landing strip, although the original clubhouse in the photo still stands. Do you know more about this airplane, or what brought the airplane to the Ranch?

Share it on Twin Commander’s Facebook page or email [email protected].