The aircraft engine shop known internationally for its Gold Seal piston engine has taken to the skies on a new venture—turbine engine maintenance and repair. Western Skyways acquired the entire inventory for the shop by purchasing the assets of ASL Turbine, LLC, formerly of Rome, Ga. ASL had tooled-up their own full service turbine engine shop just three years ago, making the acquisition for Western Skyways into essentially a new shop.
“Our service base is comprised largely of fleet aircraft. Having the ability to work on the #1 commercial turbine engine answers the demand of our fleet operators, who’ve come to trust Western Skyways,” explained David Leis, vice president of sales. The new turbine engine shop will specialize in PT6A and JT15D engines.
Perhaps most significant in the purchase of ASL assets was the move of its senior vice president, Thomas Barry. A 22-year turbine engine maintenance veteran, Barry brings with him a resume that includes an 11-year career at Pratt & Whitney, along with additional time logged at Airwork in Millville, N.J., Dallas Airmotive and Van Dusen Turbine, before starting ASL in the spring of 2003. He also brings the core of the ASL customer base.
“We had a specific objective to raise the bar on turbine engine service,” Barry said. “We accomplished that by offering quick turn service, an exceptional fuel nozzle exchange kit program, and an extensive in-house OEM parts inventory.”
Western Skyways is positioned to offer those same advantages to their turbine engine customers. The menu of services includes basic hot section inspections of a PT6 engine in 24 hours, based on required repairs and customer requirements, and 48 hours for the JT15. For sudden stoppage and lightning strikes, operators can expect engine services to be completed in three to five days, again, based on customer requirements, required repairs, and parts availability. Standard services include engine changes, rigging, hot section inspections and repair, accessory gear box repairs, MIO (metal in oil), JT15 fan repair due to F.O.D., engine vibration analysis, fan balancing and repair, and borescope inspection.
Western Skyways will continue the unique fuel nozzle exchange kit program, started by Barry while at ASL. Western Skyways can inspect and clean nozzles or provide a fuel nozzle exchange kit, shipped within 24 hours. The program has been highly acclaimed by owner/operators, as it’s fast, easy and slashes both down time and costs.
The new shop will be located next to the existing piston engine shop. That 30,000-square-foot facility was completed in 2001 at Montrose Regional Airport. The 2001 expansion was made possible by assistance given by the local Montrose Economic Development Corporation, through one of its development initiatives for new and expanding business ventures. The turbine engine shop is located at the brand new 75,000-square-foot JetAway Aviation fly-in facility.
JetAway is a premiere FBO located at the base of the San Juan Mountains, in the heart of Colorado resort country. The FBO features the largest climate-controlled hangar in the region, as well as superior pilot and passenger amenities and executive air charter services.
Western Skyways’ turbine engine shop features state-of-the-art equipment, a Vectrax fully computerized lathe, Schenck horizontal and vertical balancing machines, micro view for precise measurements, and all in-house filed tools from Kellstrom. Joining the two facilities brings an exceptional level of never-before-available jet expertise to the region.
“This has been a dream of mine for over a decade,” said Al Head, president of Western Skyways. “The strength of the western central states market now not only makes it feasible, but a great time to turn our dream into reality. We fully anticipate achieving the same phenomenal success we’ve had with our piston engine shop. We’re very excited to see our hard work and attention to detail come together to launch our new turbine engine shop.”
To help kick-start the acquisition of new customers, Western Skyways has introduced its Buddy Program, a referral incentive offer. When a friend or colleague schedules turbine engine maintenance or repair work within 12 months of a referral, a $500 reimbursement check is sent to the person who referred the new customer, and a $500 credit is applied to the invoice of the new customer.
“It’s our grand opening kickoff incentive,” Leis said. “We know once people experience our new turbine engine shop, they’ll be happy to make a Western Skyways referral. And after using Tom and Western Skyways’ turbine services, they’ll still be your friend!”
For more information, contact Tom Barry at 970-254-0854, or David Leis at 970-249-0232 or