…Crash Airplane Met AD…


The aircraft in the most recent crash was an early T-34, serial number G-13, and had seen extensive use in mock air combat operations, including a stint with Georgia-based Sky Warriors, before it was acquired by Texas Air Aces. Like virtually the entire fleet of T-34s, it had met one of the alternate means of compliance (AMOC) to the AD requiring extensive spar inspection and/or a prohibition on aerobatics. George Braly, whose company, General Aviation Modifications Inc., developed its own AMOC in concert with the T-34 Association, told AVweb that the crash aircraft had been fitted with a used Baron spar sometime in 1995. The replacement spar qualifies as one of four AMOC methods, which include replacement spars, a re-enforcing gusset in the stressed area and a hefty external steel strap bridging the wings across the belly. Sometime after G-13 had its used Baron spar installed, the aircraft suffered an in-flight canopy opening and the right rear wing spar suffered damage when the canopy departed the aircraft. It’s not yet known if this was a factor in the structural failure.