Cessna Conquests are as reliable as they come. With excellent speed, range, and climb performance, as well as unmatched fuel efficiency, the Cessna Conquest is a top choice, particularly for those making the transition to turbine power. If a Cessna Conquest’s performance wasn’t enough to convince owner operators that it’s an ideal aircraft, its durability certainly will. In fact, a Cessna Conquest boasts the least unexpected repairs compared to many of its contemporaries.
However, there are a few common repairs that we’ve seen for Cessna Conquests that are helpful to keep in mind as pilots are performing their pre-flight inspections. With just a little extra attention to detail, these common repairs for Cessna Conquests can be caught early, before they become an expensive issue.
Check the Flaps at Every Pre-Flight Inspection
The flaps on a Cessna Conquest are honeycombed structure—with a piece of aluminum on the top and bottom, and a honeycombed lattice material in between that is bonded with resin to the aluminum. They are very well-engineered and can take a lot of flight stresses.
To ensure the flaps are in good condition during your pre-flight, conduct a good visual inspection of the flap surfaces. Small, raised portions of paint or cracks on the surface may indicate dis-bonding. Pay particular attention to the areas around the exhaust, as that is typically where the disbonding starts. Once disbonding begins, even if it is a small area, it can expand to a major repair. An inexpensive repair can quickly snowball to a complete replacement of the flap, which could cost around $30,000.
If during your visual inspection there is evidence of bubbles (raised paint) or cracks in the painted area, have your maintenance provider due a tap test. If they hear a hollow sound, disbonding has likely started to occur and you should contact your MRO as soon as possible for a repair.
Tip: The D Check inspections are an ideal time to complete these repairs. If the disbonding is minor, Winner Aviation can take care of the repairs in-house. With the filling, priming, and painting, it will add 4 to 5 days to the total downtime. If the disbonding is severe, parts will need to be ordered for a flap replacement and downtime will be significant.
Keep an Eye on the Lower Main Cabin Entrance Door
The main cabin entrance takes a lot of abuse from people coming in and out of the doorway with heavy luggage in tow. The forward and aft corners of the lower cabin door are prone to cracking, simply from wear and tear and heavy loads.
If you suspect a crack, bring it to your maintenance providers attention early on, as it may be an inexpensive repair. However, if there is a crack and it grows, it could quickly become an involved process. The maintenance provider may need to contact a DER. A licensed (designated engineering representative) is an individual who holds the required technical qualifications and experience needed to recommend structural repairs. We at Winner have worked closely with several DER providers and are familiar with various DER’s that can provide the needed information and drawings in a timely fashion.
If extensive repairs are required, an engineering drawing may be needed and can cost up to $2,500, that is not including the parts and labor needed to complete the repair.
Tip: D Checks are a great time for these repairs, as well, if there are minimal cracks. With a D Check inspection, you will already have budgeted a longer downtime. By combining labor and service, repairs become more efficient.
Tighten the Engine Torque Indicating System
The Engine Torque Indicating System is the one issue that Cessna Conquests have had over the years, outside of general wear and tear that occurs with all aircraft. The Engine Torque Indicating system works to electrically transmit engine torque to the cockpit indicator. With constant vibration that comes from the engine truss assembly where the transducer is mounted the vibration and heat causes a natural wearing of the mounting hardware.
If too much movement occurs, the torque transducer could sustain damage—damage that could cost you up to $30,000 for a new transducer.
A much more effective and affordable solution is to consistently check the tightness of all components. Keep the torque indicating system clean and in good working order with a keen eye for any excessive movement or wearing of mounting. If necessary, replace the clamps to ensure they are serviceable. All of these are quick and easy adjustments that will save tons of money and downtime.
Tip: Phase 2, Phase 3, or D Checks are great times to have your MRO check the clamping of your torque transducer. Ask your MRO to give the engine torque indicating system a once over during those inspections.
Address Bleed Air System Issues
There are very few options for repairing your bleed air valves on Cessna Conquests. Recently we have seen issues with bleed air valves sticking or opening late. If a bleed air valve fails, you will be hard pressed to find a serviceable valve.
The good news is that there are simple ways to ensure the operation of the bleed air valves. Following the pilots operating handbook and performing the pre-takeoff checklist will let you know the valves are operating properly. Cycling the valves to all the positions, left engine, right engine, both, ground and emergency, and then setting them for your takeoff will give you a good feeling that all is operating properly.
If you do not already complete these checks prior to takeoff the adjustment to your pre-flight inspection could make all the difference in ensuring your bleed air system is running properly.
Contact Winner Aviation for Repairs for Cessna Conquests
Older airplanes like the Cessna Conquest simply don’t break and will keep running if you treat them well. And, as with most older aircraft, parts are becoming harder and harder to find. So it’s important that the aircraft is taken care of to avoid costly repairs or parts replacements.
Should a repair need arise, Winner Aviation has your back. Contact us today to either schedule your Cessna Conquest phased inspections, or to discuss any issues you may be seeing. We’re always here to help.