|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : zzz.airport|
|Altitude||agl single value : 0|
|Controlling Facilities||tower : zzz.tower|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Bonanza 35|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Function||maintenance : inspector|
|Qualification||technician : inspection authority|
technician : powerplant
technician : airframe
|Experience||maintenance technician : 29|
|Function||other personnel other|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : critical|
|Independent Detector||other other : 2|
|Maintenance||contributing factor : briefing|
During an annual inspection; the aft bathtub fitting on top of the right wing was found to be stopped up. This was common; and had been the case for the last 6 annual inspections. There was some surface rust on the nut of the wing attaching bolt in the bathtub fitting. There was discoloration from water and rust stains on the surface of the bathtub fitting. This was addressed; and the fitting and nut and bolt were determined to be airworthy. The owner later decided to sell the aircraft. A prospective buyer came and looked at the aircraft and had a mechanic with him. They looked at the fitting during the pre-buy inspection; and the fitting was again clogged; and the rust and stains had returned. They told the owner they would not buy the aircraft; that it was not airworthy; unless the fitting was replaced. I was not contacted by the owner. The owner was upset; and took the plane to a shop known to me. This is when I first heard about the problem. The shop proceeded to polish on the fitting. It was then flown to another shop which I also have known for yrs and they did what the owner told them to do. They removed the right wing; replaced the fitting and the owner elected to buy new bolts also. I went to the shop; talked to the shop owner; whom I also have known for yrs; and he showed me the fitting and the old bolt. The owner had contacted beech and they did what any manufacturer would do. They told him to replace everything. The owner had since contacted me and asked me to pay for all of the repairs. I attempted to explain to him that my generic; but thorough inspection form which includes all of the items in far 43 appendix D and more did not include any special instructions beyond visual for bathtub fittings. I have since changed to using beech inspection checklists for bonanza. There were no airworthiness directives on these fittings (except for T-34 wings on bonanzas). The owner told me there was a recommendation by beech to change the wing bolts every 15 yrs. I asked him if he had been sent these by beech as an owner; and if so; why he had not showed it to me and requested the change be done. I explained to him I do not receive those types of notices; nor am I responsible for them by FAA regulations. I am filing this as required by regulation; and I am concerned that the owner will jeopardize my license if I do not give him money. Callback conversation with reporter revealed the following information: reporter stated these 'bathtub' fittings on top of the left and right wing have a drain hole that continually gets 'stopped-up;' basically clogged-up. This is not from flying the aircraft or dirt accumulation. The major contributors of plugging these drain holes are spiders; insects and 'dirt daubers;' which look like wasps that build nests the size of baseballs around these drain holes. These nests require some effort to remove; even to the point of busting them out; due to the hard; dry; mud like consistency of the nest construction. All the insects involved with contributing to the plugging of the drain hole; do so when the plane sits in the hangar. This plugging of the 'bathtub' fitting drain hole from these insects; at least in his area; allows moisture and water to pool and; are the major contributors to corrosion on the fitting and attaching bolt.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: AN INSPECTION AUTHORIZED (IA) MECHANIC PERFORMING AN ANNUAL INSPECTION ON A BEECH BONANZA DESCRIBES THE EVENTS SURROUNDING THE AFT 'BATHTUB' FITTING ON TOP OF THE WING.
Narrative: DURING AN ANNUAL INSPECTION; THE AFT BATHTUB FITTING ON TOP OF THE R WING WAS FOUND TO BE STOPPED UP. THIS WAS COMMON; AND HAD BEEN THE CASE FOR THE LAST 6 ANNUAL INSPECTIONS. THERE WAS SOME SURFACE RUST ON THE NUT OF THE WING ATTACHING BOLT IN THE BATHTUB FITTING. THERE WAS DISCOLORATION FROM WATER AND RUST STAINS ON THE SURFACE OF THE BATHTUB FITTING. THIS WAS ADDRESSED; AND THE FITTING AND NUT AND BOLT WERE DETERMINED TO BE AIRWORTHY. THE OWNER LATER DECIDED TO SELL THE ACFT. A PROSPECTIVE BUYER CAME AND LOOKED AT THE ACFT AND HAD A MECH WITH HIM. THEY LOOKED AT THE FITTING DURING THE PRE-BUY INSPECTION; AND THE FITTING WAS AGAIN CLOGGED; AND THE RUST AND STAINS HAD RETURNED. THEY TOLD THE OWNER THEY WOULD NOT BUY THE ACFT; THAT IT WAS NOT AIRWORTHY; UNLESS THE FITTING WAS REPLACED. I WAS NOT CONTACTED BY THE OWNER. THE OWNER WAS UPSET; AND TOOK THE PLANE TO A SHOP KNOWN TO ME. THIS IS WHEN I FIRST HEARD ABOUT THE PROB. THE SHOP PROCEEDED TO POLISH ON THE FITTING. IT WAS THEN FLOWN TO ANOTHER SHOP WHICH I ALSO HAVE KNOWN FOR YRS AND THEY DID WHAT THE OWNER TOLD THEM TO DO. THEY REMOVED THE R WING; REPLACED THE FITTING AND THE OWNER ELECTED TO BUY NEW BOLTS ALSO. I WENT TO THE SHOP; TALKED TO THE SHOP OWNER; WHOM I ALSO HAVE KNOWN FOR YRS; AND HE SHOWED ME THE FITTING AND THE OLD BOLT. THE OWNER HAD CONTACTED BEECH AND THEY DID WHAT ANY MANUFACTURER WOULD DO. THEY TOLD HIM TO REPLACE EVERYTHING. THE OWNER HAD SINCE CONTACTED ME AND ASKED ME TO PAY FOR ALL OF THE REPAIRS. I ATTEMPTED TO EXPLAIN TO HIM THAT MY GENERIC; BUT THOROUGH INSPECTION FORM WHICH INCLUDES ALL OF THE ITEMS IN FAR 43 APPENDIX D AND MORE DID NOT INCLUDE ANY SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS BEYOND VISUAL FOR BATHTUB FITTINGS. I HAVE SINCE CHANGED TO USING BEECH INSPECTION CHKLISTS FOR BONANZA. THERE WERE NO AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES ON THESE FITTINGS (EXCEPT FOR T-34 WINGS ON BONANZAS). THE OWNER TOLD ME THERE WAS A RECOMMENDATION BY BEECH TO CHANGE THE WING BOLTS EVERY 15 YRS. I ASKED HIM IF HE HAD BEEN SENT THESE BY BEECH AS AN OWNER; AND IF SO; WHY HE HAD NOT SHOWED IT TO ME AND REQUESTED THE CHANGE BE DONE. I EXPLAINED TO HIM I DO NOT RECEIVE THOSE TYPES OF NOTICES; NOR AM I RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM BY FAA REGS. I AM FILING THIS AS REQUIRED BY REG; AND I AM CONCERNED THAT THE OWNER WILL JEOPARDIZE MY LICENSE IF I DO NOT GIVE HIM MONEY. CALLBACK CONVERSATION WITH RPTR REVEALED THE FOLLOWING INFO: REPORTER STATED THESE 'BATHTUB' FITTINGS ON TOP OF THE LEFT AND RIGHT WING HAVE A DRAIN HOLE THAT CONTINUALLY GETS 'STOPPED-UP;' BASICALLY CLOGGED-UP. THIS IS NOT FROM FLYING THE ACFT OR DIRT ACCUMULATION. THE MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS OF PLUGGING THESE DRAIN HOLES ARE SPIDERS; INSECTS AND 'DIRT DAUBERS;' WHICH LOOK LIKE WASPS THAT BUILD NESTS THE SIZE OF BASEBALLS AROUND THESE DRAIN HOLES. THESE NESTS REQUIRE SOME EFFORT TO REMOVE; EVEN TO THE POINT OF BUSTING THEM OUT; DUE TO THE HARD; DRY; MUD LIKE CONSISTENCY OF THE NEST CONSTRUCTION. ALL THE INSECTS INVOLVED WITH CONTRIBUTING TO THE PLUGGING OF THE DRAIN HOLE; DO SO WHEN THE PLANE SITS IN THE HANGAR. THIS PLUGGING OF THE 'BATHTUB' FITTING DRAIN HOLE FROM THESE INSECTS; AT LEAST IN HIS AREA; ALLOWS MOISTURE AND WATER TO POOL AND; ARE THE MAJOR CONTRIBUTORS TO CORROSION ON THE FITTING AND ATTACHING BOLT.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of January 2009 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.