Colombian Army Goes For Grand Renaissance—Twice

Two JetProp Twin Commanders operated by the Colombian Army are undergoing Grand Renaissance refurbishments at Eagle Creek Aviation Services, Inc. in Indianapolis. The two refurbished Twin Commanders will serve a dual role in the Colombian Army as military executive transports and also for medical evacuations.

Twin Commander Aircraft's Grand Renaissance program involves disassembly of the aircraft to its aluminum shell, and a comprehensive rebuilding or refurbishment of all systems and virtually all components with new or overhauled components. Optional Honeywell TPE 331-10T engines are fitted to Commander models powered by standard TPE331-5 series engines. The result of the Grand Renaissance process is an aircraft of superlative quality, safety, and long-term value.

Grand Renaissance projects are done at authorized Twin Commander service centers that have been factory certified to undertake the extensive Grand Renaissance program. Eagle Creek is an authorized Twin Commander service center, and a major Grand Renaissance completion center.

It will take an estimated 11 months and more than 14,000 man-hours to complete the Grand Renaissance makeover on the Colombian Army's 980 (model 695) and 1000 (695A), according to Eagle Creek. It plans on delivering one aircraft in August 2011 and the other in the fourth quarter of 2011.

Eagle Creek also will complete service bulletin work, an interior refurbishment, and manage the exterior repainting of the two aircraft. An extensive avionics panel upgrade will be performed on both airplanes including dual Garmin G600 Flight Displays; WAAS-enabled Garmin GNS-530W and GNS-430W Comm, Nav and GPS Units; Garmin GMA-347 Audio Panel; Garmin GTX-330 Transponder; Garmin GWX68 Radar; and Meggitt Avionics Engine Instruments Display Systems. “We are honored to have been selected by the Colombian Army for this important refurbishment,” said Matt Hagans, Eagle Creek’s CEO. “We are firmly committed to the enhancement of the Twin Commander fleet worldwide. When these aircraft are delivered, it will be difficult to tell that they are not brand new given the level of detail and refurbishment being performed.”

“We are pleased with the strong interest being shown in the Grand Renaissance, especially from military and government operators, and congratulate Eagle Creek on securing this recent contract,” commented Twin Commander Aircraft President Matt Isley. “Making the right decisions about aircraft acquisitions and upgrades is never easy, but in difficult economic times those decisions become even tougher, requiring even more precise analysis. The fact that operators are choosing the Grand Renaissance is solid evidence that there is simply no new aircraft out there capable of delivering the all-around performance, fuel efficiency, and value of a Twin Commander, especially one that has benefited from the world’s only factory-authorized and monitored twin-turboprop airframe refurbishment program.”

Representatives of the Colombian Army came to Eagle Creek’s facility in Indianapolis to deliver the aircraft for the refurbishments. The refurbishment project was conducted in cooperation with Asesorias Y Representacion Para Ingenieria S.A. (ASERPA) of Bogota, Colombia. ASERPA is a Colombian aviation advisory company and a provider of aviation parts, maintenance, repair, training, logistics, and other services for non-regular operators using helicopters and small aircraft, and for the army in Colombia. Eagle Creek said that ASERPA has been a valued partner and an important resource for engaging with the Colombian Army.