ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. --
The Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex completed its first D-Check on a HC-130J Super Hercules aircraft for the Air Combat Command.
Members of the 560th and 558th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron along with the 402nd Commodities Maintenance Group at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, teamed up to complete the intensive task.
Michael Smith, 560th AMXS C-130 J-Model Flight chief said the D-Check is one of the letter checks required for periodic maintenance.
“The D-Check is the equivalent to program depot maintenance,” he said. “But with more inspections and less 100% replacements.”
It took approximately 150 technicians 233 days to perform the D-Check, Smith said.
“Shortly after arrival at the depot, the aircraft is defueled and de-armed for maintenance,” he said. “Then the aircraft is de-painted or sanded before heading to the dock for inspections.
“After inspections, maintainers begin the repair and overhaul process before building the aircraft back up for operational checks” he continued. “The aircraft then heads to the fuel pit for leak checks, then to paint before going to functional test for final operational checks and pre-flight inspections.”
There were tasks in the D-Check Robins maintainers had not done in the past, said Smith.
“The team performed maintenance on the in-flight refueling reel pods for the first time,” he said. “Active-duty teams from Moody AFB, Georgia, came to Robins to help certify our technicians on several maintenance tasks associated with the In-flight Refueling Pods, including replacement of hoses and performing operational checks.”
Smith said the first D-Check on a HC-130J aircraft is significant to the base.
“This was the first J-Model Special Operations Forces aircraft to come to Robins with the IFR pods still installed on the aircraft,” he said. “The D-Check requirement changed; adding inspection and operational checks of these pods to the work requirements.”
Binh Nguyen, WR-ALC Maintenance Workload analyst said they had on-site support.
“The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Systems Program Office, which is co-located at Robins, is an important part of the HC-130J stand-up,” he said. “The SPO is in charge of the overall management of the entire aircraft system and they helped to accomplish our mission.”
Nguyen, said the HC-130J aircraft arrived at Robins in December 2021, and the second one arrived a few days ago.
“This is going to be very important to Robins because by fiscal year 2029 we will be completing depot maintenance on 30 of these AFSOC aircraft,” he said.
Smith is proud of his team’s work.
“I’m proud that the entire C-130 family and our mission partners were able to come together to accomplish the first D-Check on an ACC aircraft,” he said. “We’re especially thankful to the 71st Rescue Generation Squadron team at Moody AFB for providing critical equipment and tooling required for IFR pod maintenance, along with the training. We will continue to strive for excellence and deliver quality aircraft to the warfighter.”