New Issue Prompts Expansion Of Boeing 737 Pickle Fork Checks
An initial period when fatigue cracking is not anticipated.
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November 13, 2019 - by Sean Broderick for aviationweek.com
- An initial period when fatigue cracking is not anticipated (FAA)
- Cracking outside the initial inspection area (FAA)
Checks of frame fittings and failsafe straps, or pickle forks, turned up cracks in four aircraft near fasteners that were not covered in the original inspection order issued Oct 3.
As a result, Boeing on Nov. 5 recommended that operators expand the checks to include eight fasteners, up from two in the previous order.
FAA will mandate the checks in an airworthiness directive (AD) slated to be published Nov. 13 and effective immediately.
The original AD "required repetitive inspections for cracking of the left- and right-hand side outboard chords of frame fittings and failsafe straps at a certain station"—station 663.75—"around two fasteners," and repairs of any cracks, the new directive said. "From these findings, four airplanes have been identified to have cracking outside the initial inspection area...
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