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Article and Photos by Tim Pruitt

MRO Services
All American Aviation is an up and coming player in the aerospace maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) industry.  As an FAA certified repair station, their certified service technicians provide complete support and services for avionics and components on both rotorcraft and fix-wing aircraft. 

In 2011, All American Aviation started out as a helicopter company, and in 2013 the avionics and maintenance business took hold. The management team consists of a General Manager, Director of Operations, Chief Pilot, and Director of Maintenance; all with wide-ranging experience in helicopter operations, including offshore, emergency medical services, law enforcement, military service, and flight training. The company has grown fast in a short amount of time and has just over fifty employees.  This growth is due to management constantly reinvesting back into the company.

Their facilities are located in two states.  Corporate offices, hangar, and maintenance space are housed in a 43,000 sq. ft. facility at David Wayne Hooks Airport in Spring, Texas.  Another 10,000 sq. ft. of dedicated hanger space, office, and maintenance facilities are located at Southland Field, Louisiana.  In Abbeville, Louisiana they have an additional 10,000 square feet of dedicated hangar, office, and maintenance space.  Galliano, Louisiana is the location of the smallest facility, with 5,000 sq. ft. of hanger, office, and maintenance space. 
All American Aviation has a highly trained staff of technicians that provide world-class MRO services.  They work on turbine engines, dynamic components, structures, avionics (including glass cockpits) and airframe rewiring.  Their technicians are able to take care of all routine maintenance, annuals, and other scheduled inspections of customers’ aircraft.  They particularly take pride in troubleshooting problems that other shops may have overlooked. 

Their team of experienced technicians endeavors to develop, design, and install a custom package for each aircraft they serve.  Whether an upgrade is required, or a client would like to take advantage of new technology that revolutionizes navigation and communications, All American Aviation offers glass panels, GPS installations, weather systems, cabin entertainment, office-in-the-sky configurations, and more.  The customer will benefit from All American Aviation’s buying power, state-of-the-art equipment, and their commitment to customer satisfaction.  They specialize in upgrading the value, safety, and performance of aircraft under their care.

As a certified distributor and installer with all of the major avionics suppliers such as Bendix King, Cobham, Garmin, and L3 just to name a few, integrating full avionics packages are an efficient process.  Seven months ago All American Aviation became a Garmin dealer.  As a testament to the quality of their work, in those short seven months they grew to be Garmin’s 30th largest dealer.

No MRO facility would be complete without having their own in-house machine shop; All American Aviation is equipped with precision mill and lathe machines as well as a custom jig grinding machine.  This equipment makes it possible for the company to perform specialized repairs and upgrades, such as custom panels for aircraft.  The technician can take a blueprint from any basic part and fabricate it from a bar of metal.  Whenever a special tool is needed, that may cost thousands of dollars from the OEM, it can be made in-house for much less, saving time and money.  Another benefit is that custom tools can be made to help maintain aircraft, such as parts bins, transmission stands, and a blade removal jig equipped with a hoist.

As evidence of their continuing growth, within a couple of weeks All American Aviation is expected to become an authorized service center for Airbus Helicopters.  They will work directly with the OEM and optional equipment suppliers to bring their customers the best helicopter support in the industry. 
As a helicopter owner/operator, All American Aviation understands the necessity to provide its customers with an exceptional product. They are committed to completions within budget and on time, with the safety of the helicopter and its operator as the primary concern.  The company works to find solutions that are tailored to each customer’s needs.  Refurbishment, rebuild, and maintenance of aircraft owned by operators trying to squeeze every bit of life out of their existing aircraft are key to All American Aviation’s success. Many of these clients are looking more into avionics retrofits or cosmetic makeovers for their aircraft.  In a challenging economy, large operators and small one-or-two ship operators are all trying to find ways to make every dollar count.  All American Aviation understands that when they make a good impression servicing older aircraft, that these customers will be back when a newly purchased aircraft needs warranty repair of other services.

Operations Fleet, Training, and Safety
In addition to their MRO services, All American Aviation also holds a FAR Part 135 Air Carrier Certificate issued by the FAA, and operates a range of aircraft from its Texas and Louisiana bases.  Their fleet consists of a Sikorsky S-76, Airbus Helicopters AS350B2 and B3 “A-Star,” and an Airbus Helicopters EC130.  On average the fleet logs over 800 hours per month, while enjoying an average dispatch availability of over 98 percent.

All American Aviation spends a great deal of money to standardize their fleet of aircraft.  Each helicopter is equipped with the latest navigational and radio equipment that includes the Garmin 430, 696, and 500H GPS. 

Additionally, all of their pilots are required to take annual training.  To help facilitate this, the company has a check airman on staff and performs all of their Airbus Helicopter training in-house; while the S-76 pilots go to CAE for training.  Each pilot also completes dunker training, which further increases the safety levels of pilots and crew operating in the gulf.

To date, All American Aviation has a perfect safety record that can be directly attributed to fleet standardization and not cutting corners when it comes to investing in equipment and training.  A good example of this is that they were the first to operate the Airbus Helicopter AS350B3 in the gulf. Also, pilots are dedicated to a particular base that they fly from, although they may occasionally fill in for another pilot at another base.

Due to ever-changing weather patterns in the gulf, having real-time updates is important.  XM Satellite information is transmitted to crews so they can see and avoid weather systems moving through the area.

All American Aviation is currently the only company operating in the Gulf of Mexico to have air-conditioned aircraft as a standard feature.  Having air conditioning ensures comfort and safety of the crew and passengers.  Gulf flying can involve long hours in hot and humid conditions, and these conditions can cause fatigue to set in quickly.  Having climate-controlled conditions reduces stress and allows crews to stay as sharp and focused as possible while flying.
Another safety feature is the use of Outerlink and SPOT Tracker on all helicopters and pilots.  The Outerlink system operates on an MSAT network, which delivers real-time data transmissions providing updates, messages, and in-flight data to their operations center.  For example, it gives position reports every five seconds in regular mode, and in Mayday mode it will transmit position every three seconds.  SPOT Tracker utilizes one device on the helicopter and another on the pilot.  SPOT transmits position every ten minutes; so two devices will give an update every five minutes.  Since the pilot has one on his person, in the event of a ditching, rescue personnel will have the ability to track the life raft the pilot is in.

Crew changes, VIP and business travel, photo flights, and sight-seeing tours are a few of the services that All American Aviation offers, in addition to providing offshore and land-based helicopter support to the energy and industrial markets. 

Sales Expertise
All American Aviation’s sales specialists have years of experience and work diligently to ensure every transaction is a success. They help select an aircraft perfectly suited to each specific business or personal need. They listen, analyze, and recommend options based on effective resources and years of industry experience.  With attention to detail and technical proficiency, the sales team guides from contract preparation through pre-purchase inspections.  They are experts in the aircraft sales process and take care of everything every step of the way.  All American Aviation also routinely buys helicopters for their own specific aircraft needs.

Additionally, they can completely upgrade and modify aircraft.  From paint and interiors to airframe and avionics, all specifications can be completed under one roof.  All American Aviation is poised to be a major player in the MRO business because it has the people, tools, and procedures to do the job right.

 

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