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What Happens On Post MX Flight Checks?

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Well-known member
Nov 28, 2001
When I worked at DL, after heavy MX they took the plane out and tested it out.

Do you know what altitude they do this?
What do they do? Spins, stalls, etc?
Yeah, Delta usually spins their airplanes during a flight test. I heard the 777's a real great airplane for spin training. If the plane just came off a heavy check, they do Cuban 8's. Usairways only allows split-s's to be performed on the 737's.
Post MX Flights

1.) You pray a lot to whatever supreme being you believe in.

2.) You do the most thorough pre-flight of your life and you question every mechanic within earshot about every screw that looks misaligned.

3.) You start the engines and taxi with a clenched jaw and the fire extinguisher and crash axe already in reach.

4.) You perform the most abrupt taxi and engine abuse that you can do and remain within specifications.

and then....

5.) You perform the softest, simplest flight that you can as quick as you can.

6.) On safe return, you kiss the ground, sign the paperwork, run away from the airplane and hope that your supreme being will not assign you that aircraft for your next revenue flight.

Heck, you cheated death once, why tempt fate!
I flew a mx test flight on one of our L1011-500s that came out of a heavy check in Hong Kong last January. The Company fleet manager had a short checklist of a couple of things he wanted done. Most notably was an autoland. Another stipulation was that the flight be performed in day VFR conditions. Otherwise he said it was up to us. The captain gave the leg to me, and I guess I should have racked it around on a couple of steep turns or something, but I just flew it normally (or at least as normally as I can fly!). A couple of the engineers from the facility, Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company, rode along in the jumpseat. They were very proud of their work. All of us in the flight crew got baseball caps. golf shirts, ties, and a calendar with the HAECO logo on them. The next day we flew the airplane back to LAX. All in all it was a fun time as I got to spend three nights in Hong Kong.
On the CRJ, we have an ADG, which means air driven generator. It's a little propeller with a generator attatched that pops out of the FO's side of the nose when you lose all electrical power. Once a year we have to take the aircraft up and test the little bugger out. It's kinda fun, as the FO's flight instruments all go blank, so the Captain flies the plane and works the radios. The FO and a mechanic in the jumpseat perform a bunch of tests, and they land it and put it in again for another year.

That's one type of test flight we do, and we stay below 10,000 ft and just fly around the airport until the checks are finished.
It's a well defined procedure

For acceptance out of a heavy check, I have a magazine sized checklist about 3/4" thick that outlines a series of procedures that take around 8 hours if all goes well. We check everything from the interior lights to the emergency O2 bottles on the inside, then check everything on the outside, then we fly. The exterior preflight is obviously comprehesive. We check control surfaces for proper movement and travel, etc. The flight takes about 4 hours and consists of operation every system and operational parameter. We check control effectiveness, do stalls, check trim with the controls assisted and in manual reversion at high and low speed. We shut down the engines, restart the engines, start the APU, drop the gear with using every available method and run the flaps/slats in and out. We time every operation to ensure it meets specs. We test the autothrottles and the autopilot, we do numerous approaches and go arounds, coupled and hand flown, coupled misses and we also intentionally go below G/S to test the GPWS. We also intentionally sink after a miss to set off the "don't sink" function of the GPWS.
And much more.
The objective is to provide as close a flaw free airplane to the line guys as possible.
Hope this helps

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