# Lycoming Problems with connecting rods requiring immediate compliance

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#### Hot Wings

##### Grumpy Cynic
HBA Supporter
Log Member
"Lycoming has determined that a small percentage of the bushings manufactured by a sub-supplier during a specific time period were diametrically undersized, resulting in a tightness of fit below factory accepted tolerances."

Where is their QC? Don't they do that in house or do they actually take the vendors word for the quality!? ara:

#### Toobuilder

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Log Member
It is very common for subcontractors to have their own in house QC. Often the prime will make random visits and spot check, but 100% QC? No.

HBA Supporter
Log Member
but 100% QC? No.

#### gtae07

##### Well-Known Member
You're an MBA and an AE??? Wow. You can build your own aerospace company and then sink it
No, no, no... you have it wrong... you build the company, find some investors, hype up the product, and then "retire". Let it sink on its own. Obviously you haven't been to business school.

MBA school was an expensive lesson in why I should not, and do not want to, go into management. I thought I did when I started; by my last semester I was fed up but figured I might as well finish it out. Yeah, I can better understand the company's financial statements now, and I had a really good Econ professor... but overall it really just makes me

. Since many MBAs don't believe in evidence or looking at company-level costs, they didn't care.
This is one of my greatest workplace frustrations. I'll leave it at that, since I need some alcohol to really get that rant polished up.

#### TFF

##### Well-Known Member
I think any employee in the corperate headquarters believes that they will have a job no matter what happens on the core bussiness floor. They all believe the bussiness is there for them instead of them in support of the bussiness.

#### Kyle Boatright

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
No, no, no... you have it wrong... you build the company, find some investors, hype up the product, and then "retire". .
Never retire. Hang on as long as you can pulling in a 7-8 figure income. Be the last man standing when the ship goes down... Alternately, have your stooges... I mean "The Board" write you a contract with a tremendous golden parachute, so when they run you off, you get millions in immediate and deferred compensation.

#### Swampyankee

##### Well-Known Member
I think any employee in the corperate headquarters believes that they will have a job no matter what happens on the core bussiness floor. They all believe the bussiness is there for them instead of them in support of the bussiness.
Bingo. Somebody, possibly in jest, once said the best way to make US manufacturing more competitive with Japan was to send Japanese middle managers to get Harvard MBAs.

#### Dan Thomas

##### Well-Known Member
It is very common for subcontractors to have their own in house QC. Often the prime will make random visits and spot check, but 100% QC? No.
Modern CNC machinery has the capability to mike a bushing as it's parted off. Small corrections for thermal expansion complete the check. The machine can adjust the depth of cut to achieve the correct dimensions. It sounds like Lycoming's "contractor" might be some guy with a manual lathe.

This issue is past the SB stage. http:// https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2017/08/10/2017-16968/airworthiness-directives-lycoming-engines-reciprocating-engines

#### Hot Wings

##### Grumpy Cynic
HBA Supporter
Log Member
It sounds like Lycoming's "contractor" might be some guy with a manual lathe.
Nothing wrong with a manual lathe for making Lycoming, or any, rod bushings but it sounds like someone stepped on the go/no go gauge.

#### Winginit

##### Well-Known Member
I would tend to think that the bushings are probably finished externally with a grinding machine and internally with a grinder/or a hone . If so, holding suitable tolerances should be a no-brainer. But then with Lycoming, nothing surprises me anymore.

#### Hot Wings

##### Grumpy Cynic
HBA Supporter
Log Member
I would tend to think that the bushings are probably finished externally with a grinding machine and internally with a grinder/or a hone . If so, holding suitable tolerances should be a no-brainer. But then with Lycoming, nothing surprises me anymore.
You would think that something this basic shouldn't cause problems but....

Way back in the dawn of time I ordered a case of rebuilt VW rods - IIRC from Brazil. One of the first engines from that batch came back less than a month later with a noise. Turns out it was a loose upper rod bushing. It had little more than a heavy hand press fit. Bushing measured just fine but upon further inspection you could see honing marks in the rod where the surface had been 'cleaned up'. I ended up checking a bunch of that batch of rods by checking the press fit. Enough failed that I tossed the whole batch (around 100) in the iron bucket and found an old school machine shop in Denver to do my rebuild work. I always got a few of the cores back because they couldn't be rebuilt.

If a small shop like I used could implement proper QC there is no reason Lycoming can't - and make sure it's suppliers are actually getting the job done. There is too much corporate maleficence that is accepted as normal. :depressed

#### Winginit

##### Well-Known Member
You would think that something this basic shouldn't cause problems but....

Way back in the dawn of time I ordered a case of rebuilt VW rods - IIRC from Brazil. One of the first engines from that batch came back less than a month later with a noise. Turns out it was a loose upper rod bushing. It had little more than a heavy hand press fit. Bushing measured just fine but upon further inspection you could see honing marks in the rod where the surface had been 'cleaned up'. I ended up checking a bunch of that batch of rods by checking the press fit. Enough failed that I tossed the whole batch (around 100) in the iron bucket and found an old school machine shop in Denver to do my rebuild work. I always got a few of the cores back because they couldn't be rebuilt.

If a small shop like I used could implement proper QC there is no reason Lycoming can't - and make sure it's suppliers are actually getting the job done. There is too much corporate maleficence that is accepted as normal. :depressed
Floundering about, I located a company in Florida that made the exact same gear other than a Mil-spec difference on material for the Air Force. Explaining my predicament, the owner/operator promised me he would get them done for me. He was very professional to talk with and I believed him. He red eyed some material from Kalifornia....ooops, wrong stuff. He immediately ordered more, giving it his personal attention. Anyway, within 3 weeks he had the gears made and delivered to me and they were all in spec.
I called to thank him and told him I would look for some other work that he might be interested in. Shortly thereafter, a real plum of a job showed up. I contacted him and had him submit a bid. When it came time for placing his bid, I pointed him in the right direction and tried to help with any questions he had. Since no one else submitted a bid on the job, it was awarded to his company and he ended up bidding on a much larger contract with the FSS to make the same item. There were a few other jobs that he quoted and got too. All in all it turned out to be a real boon for his company because he was willing to put the effort out when needed.
When you purchase things on the open market, there are dozens of companies that contact you offering great service and lower pricing. What you find is that there is a lot of lip service and glad handing. When you do find the ones who sincerely strive to make and deliver quality products, you stick with them and try to help them.
If Lycoming has a company that they can trust, there is nothing wrong with doing business with them.....they just have to realize which ones are which. All of that being said, its also entirely possible that Lycoming used specs that were incorrect and the subcontractor made them just like the drawing. Remember, they did that with the crankshaft fiasco and then tried to blame the subcontractor.

#### Aesquire

##### Well-Known Member
We called it the Curse of the Harvard MBA. One company that will become nameless that I worked for, In QC, went from the #1 employer in the area to a small group of executives giving themselves bonuses for how cleverly they managed to sell all the working parts of the company, and stealing the retirement fund.

I was there for the beginning of the end. We had a product that was going to be the Big Seller, that had issues with many things, but the 2 big ones were that the million molded parts that did X were designed wrong and needed a bevel on one edge to trip the micro switch. So 24/7 they had employees on overtime manually milling these parts in rework, hundreds of hours in the tooling dept. making jigs to do so, and the product didn't make it to the shelves by Christmas, which for a consumer item means 70% of your yearly sales sometimes. The other problem was it just did a poor job. There was an internal group in the company that managed to make it to a board meeting, and the presentation was short and painful. Basically, "it's a piece of junk that's going to anger our customers and ruin our reputation, but we've figured out how to adapt the new tech to an older product making it the best on the planet, and we can have them by Christmas." The Board listened politely, then told them they were idiots and didn't know anything about anything and go back to work, shut up, or get fired.

Oh, yeah, and it burst into flames. But that was a minor issue.

After they laid off the first 4000, I couldn't get a job for over a year in the field since I'd worked for "those guys".

I have a list of things a company says that tells me to sell their stock immediately. "A new Paradigm" is one of them.