North State Aviation to lay off 345 employees

Katie Arcieri – Triad Business Journal

North State Aviation, an aviation maintenance business at the Smith Reynolds Airport in Winston-Salem that officially began in 2011 with a handful of employees, notified the state that it will permanently close its facility at the Smith Reynolds Airport in Winston-Salem starting this week and lay off 345 people due to an “unforeseeable significant downturn in business.”

Company officials told the state in a WARN (Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act) notice that North State Aviation was not successful in obtaining capital to avoid or postpone “this unfortunate result.”

Gary Smith, CEO of North State Aviation since last year, did not immediately return a reporter’s phone call. Charlie Creech, president of North State Aviation, also did not return a call this morning.

Smith recently served as a panelist on the TBJ’s Business of Aviation event held March 9.

As of 2015, North State was operating six production maintenance lines for United Airlines and had amassed a client list that includes other major aviation customers.

Smith said recently that the firm had been seeing increased competition from maintenance repair and overhaul in areas south of the U.S. border.

North State had become part of the burgeoning aviation sector in the Triad, which is home to major companies — including Honda Aircraft Co. and HAECO Americas — that combined employ thousands of workers.

Can You Maintain Your Own Airplane? –

FAA Safety Team | Safer Skies Through Education
You have asked us to notify you when a webinar is scheduled that meets your criteria. The following webinar may be of interest to you:

“Can You Maintain Your Own Airplane?”
Topic: May you, as a pilot, perform maintenance on your aircraft including Light-Sport Aircraft & Experimental aircraft?
On Thursday, March 30, 2017 at 19:00 Eastern Daylight Time (16:00 PDT, 17:00 MDT, 18:00 CDT, 13:00 HST, 15:00 AKDT, 16:00 Arizona, 23:00 GMT)

Select Number:


Do you like to do your own maintenance?  Are you aware of just what you can and can’t do?  This class is a review of the requirements in FAR Part 91 and 43.  We will cover exactly what maintenance you can perform, whether you need oversight, and how to document it correctly.


To view further details and registration information for this webinar, click here.

The sponsor for this seminar is: FAA Safety Team

The following credit(s) are available for the WINGS/AMT Programs:

Basic Knowledge 3 – 1 Credit
AMT: 1.00

Click here to view the WINGS help page

1979 182Q Skylane

This Skylane with a stunning recent new paint job arrived at Carolina Avionics & Aircraft Interiors with the ‘old school’ original factory interior…dated fabric and filthy carpet with lots of worn, torn areas throughout.  The owner knew the look he wanted, and we helped him through the design process – including several special custom features.  Carolina Avionics & Aircraft Interiors’ technicians successfully brought the plane’s interior back to life, giving it a clean, new look and adding many more years of flying comfort and pleasure – along with enhancing its book value.  Several avionics upgrades were also installed at the same time the interior was refurbished – “One Stop Service…Under One Roof” to minimize down time.


For information or to request a quote, contact:
Warren Ludlam
Director of Sales and Marketing
Carolina Avionics & Aircraft Interiors
Rowan County Regional Airport (RUQ)
Salisbury, North Carolina
Direct Office #: (336) 253-3994

North State Aviation firm names CEO

Katie Arcieri – Triad Bus Journal

Winston-Salem-based North State Aviation has named Gary L. Smith its CEO, according to a company announcement.

Smith, who received his MBA from the UNC-Greensboro Bryan School of Business, most recently served as vice president and general manager of the Wabtech Elastomers Group, where he had oversight of sales, operations and finance functions of the company.

Al Bodford, chairman of the board and majority shareholder for North State Aviation, said the company is pleased that Smith has decided to join the team at North State Aviation. “Gary brings a wealth of expertise that will complement our group and enhance our continued efforts to build and expand our company,” Bodford said.

Smith said he is very excited to be a part of the North State Aviation team. “North State has achieved many accomplishments in its first six years,” Smith said. “I look forward to partnering with the management team to take the business to the next level. Aviation is a huge part of the history of this great state and the opportunities are excellent for North State.”

Smith takes the helm of North State Aviation at a time of growth for the company. North State started in 2011 at Smith Reynolds Airport with a handful of employees and has since grown its work force to more than 400 employees. It now operates a second facility at the Global TransPark in Kinston.

The company specializes in maintenance of aircraft including Boeing and Airbus planes. To date, the company has completed maintenance checks on more than 600 airplanes.

How often should you change your Tempest (Gibsonville NC) oil filter

General Aviation News

I’ve received several questions recently about oil filters. Specifically, if you own an aircraft that came from the factory without an oil filter, should you install an aftermarket filter?

The questions were usually divided into two parts. First, will the installation of an oil filter pay for itself? And will an oil filter increase the life or increase the chance of reaching TBO on an aircraft engine?

The question of cost is relatively simple. If you fly 150 hours a year, you will save the cost of roughly three oil changes a year.

However, you do need to increase the cost estimate for each oil change by the cost of an oil filter element. The more you fly each year, the more you will save.

Oil Filter

The benefit for the engine question is a little more cloudy.

Common sense tells us that an oil filter that removes particles from the oil has got to be a good thing. And that is basically true.

However, there is one concern here, and that is low usage aircraft.

The idea that you change the oil every 50 hours on an oil filter equipped aircraft and 25 hours on an aircraft without an oil filter is very ingrained in the aviation community. So if you fly only 75 hours or less a year, you will be changing the oil about three times a year.

If you think that if you install an oil filter on this aircraft, you can go to 50 hours between oil changes, that may cause a problem.

Changing the oil once every year or so will probably cause problems in the long run. If the low usage aircraft sits for extended periods of time, especially in a humid climate, rust will form on many surfaces like the cam and lifters.

Then when the engine is started, this rust rouge will be absorbed by the oil and act as a lapping compound for high load wear parts in the engine. A filter will reduce the amount of this rouge, but will not remove all of it.

The bottom line here is that if you fly less than, say, 50 to 75 hours a year, changing the oil every 25 hours or a minimum of three times a year will probably give you a better chance of reaching full TBO than installing an oil filter and changing every 50 hours.

People need to remember that changing the oil at least every four months is probably the number one secret to getting to full TBO. On high usage aircraft, the 50 hours with a filter then comes into play.

So is an oil filter worth the cost? It does offer advantages for higher usage aircraft.

Another reason for an oil filter is it is probably one of the best diagnostic tools for your engine.

Whenever you change the oil, you need to cut the filter apart and look for metal in the pleats of the paper. If you do this at each oil change, you should be able to note any significant increase in metal production from your engine. This is an excellent predictor of problems before they become major problems.

As always, the basics are the most important. You need to change the oil every four months.

And if you fly more than 75 to 100 hours a year, then an oil filter may be something to consider.

Triad aviation firm gets FAA clearance to work on Airbus planes

Katie Arcieri, Triad Business Journal

North State Aviation, a Winston-Salem-based aviation maintenance company that employs more than 400 people, has received clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration to perform work on the Airbus A-320 family of airplanes.

The company said it can now perform preventive maintenance, repair, inspection and alterations on Airbus 319, 320 and 321 airplanes. Other aircraft that can be worked on at North State’s facility at Smith Reynolds Airport are the Boeing 727, 737, 757 and 767.

North State President Charlie Creech said the addition of the Airbus family means “we have basically doubled the number of aircraft available for North State to maintain.”

“There are over 9,200 Boeing 737 aircraft in operation and over 7,100 Airbus A-320 family aircraft have been delivered commercially,” Creech said.

Since its founding in 2010 at the airport, North State has performed maintenance checks on more than 600 aircraft. The company has grown to more than 400 employees and now operates a second facility at the Global TransPark in Kinston, where it is expanding with 109 jobs for a new maintenance center.

North State is the largest tenant at the airport, where it occupies the majority of a former Piedmont Airlines building at 4001 N. Liberty St. and works on aircraft for United Airlines and other customers.

First Aviation Services Inc. Named “MRO of the Year” by Aviation Week

Business Wire

FAvS’s principal operating subsidiaries are Aerospace Turbine Rotables, Inc. (AeTR) in Wichita, Kansas, Piedmont Propulsion Systems, LLC (PPS) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and Evolution Aerospace, Inc. (EVO) in Wichita, KS. More information about FAvS and its subsidiaries may be found on the company’s website

First Aviation Services Inc. has been selected to receive the 2016 ‘MRO of the Year Award for Military Center of Excellence’ from Aviation Week. The company was singled out from maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) industry nominees and will receive the award during an April 5th ceremony at the MRO Americas Conference to be held in Dallas, Texas.

“DOD’s recent competition reports show that up to 80% of aircraft sustainment spending is contracted without competition, usually to the aircraft’s original manufacturer”

Aviation Week editors selected First Aviation for the award due to the company’s efforts to eliminate waste in Department of Defense (DOD) maintenance spending by reducing sole source contracts and promoting competition using the Government’s rights to maintenance and repair technical data. “DOD’s recent competition reports show that up to 80% of aircraft sustainment spending is contracted without competition, usually to the aircraft’s original manufacturer,” explains Josh Krotec, Senior Vice President. “However, we have demonstrated that U.S. based FAA-certified Repair Stations like ours – of which many are small businesses – have the technical capability and experience to meet all DOD Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) requirements.” By taking the simple initiative to use the Government’s right to maintenance and repair manuals for aircraft and other weapon systems, DOD can immediately convert tens of billions of dollars of annual MRO spend from sole source to full-and-open competition. Krotec projects that First Aviation’s efforts will result in over $300 billion in savings to U.S. taxpayers over the next decade and provide tremendous job growth in the U.S. aviation industry.

Chairman & CEO Aaron Hollander said “We are very honored to receive this recognition. What is most important to our firm is that the MRO award provides legitimacy to our efforts to increase competition in the Department of Defense’s procurement processes to bring savings, innovation and improved readiness to support the American warfighter. The move to stop sole sourcing will provide additional funds for our country’s necessary and urgent need to modernize our armed forces.”

First Aviation Services Inc. (FAvS), located in Westport, Connecticut, is a leading provider of repair and overhaul, rotables management and related engineering services to the aviation industry worldwide. FAvS’s principal operating subsidiaries are Aerospace Turbine Rotables, Inc. (AeTR) in Wichita, Kansas, Piedmont Propulsion Systems, LLC (PPS) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and Evolution Aerospace, Inc. (EVO) in Wichita, KS. More information about FAvS and its subsidiaries may be found on the company’s website


First Aviation Services Inc.
Larissa Strautman, 203-291-7700
Corporate Secretary

Revised proposal still calls for early ECi cylinder retirement

General Aviation News

The FAA has released a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking affecting ECi cylinders, but officials at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) say the new proposal doesn’t go far enough to mitigate the impact on aircraft owners. According to a report at, the proposal calls for the early retirement of replacement cylinders with serial numbers manufactured between May 2003 and October 2009 by Airmotive Engineering Corp. and marketed by Engine Components International Division, better known as ECi. The cylinders are installed in thousands of Continental 520 and 550 engines. On Jan. 8, the FAA published the supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register, opening a new comment period through Feb. 23.

Tips for cold weather engine starting


Now that cold weather is here, I get asked quite often, “How long should I warm up my engine before I drive/fly off?”

As always, there is no simple answer.

Part of the reason we warm up our vehicles is to get the heater going. But there are technical reasons to warm up our cars and our planes before we take off.

The first is to get the oil warm enough to flow through all of the passages to properly lubricate the entire engine. However, the new multi-grade oils have really eliminated this as a concern.

Read more here: