King Aerospace Maintenance Keeps Military Aircraft Ready to Fly
May 23, 2023
From Beechcraft turboprops to 747s, King Aerospace proudly offers maintenance and modification support for a wide range of government, military and special mission aircraft types, all with a commitment to flight readiness and squawk-free reliability.
“We really run the whole gamut of aircraft and services,” notes company Chairman and Founder Jerry King, “and we apply the same high standard for quality for every airplane, from the United States presidential fleet to smaller turboprop aircraft.”
Those services include maintaining special air mission C-32 (Boeing 757) and C-40 (Boeing 737) jets and supporting C-12 Huron (Beechcraft King Air), Lockheed Martin C-130, C-144 (Airbus Military CN-235) and other turboprops on a variety of missions for multiple agencies around the globe.
In 2019, King Aerospace earned a prestigious U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) contract to service and support the fleet of Boeing 737-400 and 737-700 aircraft operated by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the agency responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science.
Based at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, NM, these aircraft transport materials and personnel throughout the country and must be ready to fly on very short notice. King Aerospace performs onsite maintenance required to keep these aircraft ready on the flight line, with heavy maintenance services performed at the company’s FAA-approved and AS9110C-certified facility in Ardmore, OK.
“Flight line readiness means you show up every day, ready to make important decisions and to implement them quickly,” says Greg Mitchell, vice-president of government services. “Our position as a smaller, more agile company allows us to be extremely responsive to our customers’ needs. Many of our larger competitors simply aren’t built that way.”
For the second straight year, the General Services Administration (GSA) recognized this exemplary service with the 2022 Outstanding Small Aviation Unit award. Mitchell notes two King Aerospace team members – aircraft maintainer Patrick Williams and administrative professional Danielle Bisenieks – were also honored by GSA for their individual contributions in support of the NNSA mission.
“A Premier Flight Line Support Provider”
Another important service provided by King Aerospace involves paint stripping and application for U.S. Air Force C-40 and C-32 aircraft, as well as C-27J Spartans and HC-144A Ocean Sentry aircraft operated by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Approximately 5-7 Coast Guard aircraft come to King Aerospace for paint work every year, in which “we strip down the entire aircraft to bare metal” over 8-9 days, notes Steve Sawyer, general manager of operations. Coast Guard personnel then fly the aircraft back to base to perform heavy maintenance and corrosion checks, which are aided by having the aircraft in bare metal.
Once that work is completed, Sawyer continues, the aircraft returns to the company for a fresh coat of primer and paint in the Coast Guard’s distinctive livery. That process takes another 8-9 days, with combined work on most aircraft requiring less than 20 days total.
King Aerospace is also honored to provide flight line readiness support, as a subcontractor to Northrop Grumman, for highly-modified De Havilland Canada Dash 7 (DHC-7) and Dash 8 (DHC-8) series and Beechcraft King Air derivatives operated by the U.S. Army Special Electronic Mission Aircraft (SEMA) program.
Used for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions, these aircraft are based at Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso, TX, Camp Humphreys in South Korea and from multiple other domestic and international deployment locations.
In addition to these services, King Aerospace also offers avionics installation, interior refurbishment, mission equipment integration and nondestructive testing (NDT) services, as well as on-demand AOG (aircraft on ground) support.
Whether the job is large or small, “we pride ourselves on being a premier flight line support provider,” Mitchell concludes.