MCAS Cherry Point News

 

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Three propellers are loaded into the cargo compartment of a KC-130J Super Hercules from Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 252 at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., Oct. 15, 2014. VMGR-252 conducted a flight in support of deployed unit, or FISDU, to Moron Air Base, Spain, transporting necessary parts and supplies to its detachment that is currently deployed supporting Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response.

Photo by 2nd MAW & MCAS Cherry Point Joint Public Affairs

VMGR-252 conducts FISDU, props up detachment

31 Oct 2014 | Courtesy Story Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point

Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 252 sent one KC-130J Super Hercules to Moron, Spain, on a flight in support of deployed unit Oct. 15-18.

VMGR-252 conducts monthly FISDUs, transporting necessary parts and supplies to its detachment of four KC-130J Super Hercules currently deployed to Moron Air Base supporting Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response.

“We are somewhat unique compared to the other 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing squadrons,” said Lt. Col. Scott Koltick, commanding officer of VMGR-252. “We don’t deploy as a whole squadron; we deploy as detachments. And because we deploy as detachments, we are not able to put our full amount of resources out at any given location at any point in time.

“So the reason we need to conduct FISDUs is because I only have four planes and 85 Marines in Moron right now. From time-to-time they need to be supported with parts and supplies – typically it’s the big stuff like engines and parts, things that we can’t ship through commercial means,” explained Koltick.

On this FISDU, three ready-for-issue KC-130J propellers, each weighing nearly 550 pounds with blades spanning a diameter of 13.5 feet, were loaded into the cargo compartment of the Super Hercules and transported to Moron Air Base.

According to Koltick, the detachment was very busy supporting Operation Unified Assistance in Liberia this month and went through some propellers that they are swapping out.

The deployed VMGR-252 aircrew and maintainers met the plane upon arrival at Moron Air Base and immediately offloaded the three propellers. Four damaged propellers were already staged and ready to take their place inside the KC-130J to be transported back home for repair.

“We do not have the tools, equipment and expertise to completely fix these four propellers here,” said Capt. Jenner Yuhas, a maintenance officer with the detachment in Moron. “We also did not have any more ready-for-issue propellers here to replace the ones that are damaged.

The detachment’s powerline section is only equipped to perform lower-level maintenance to repair minor wear and tear on the propellers to keep them serviceable.

According to Chief Warrant Officer 2 Michael Steele, the detachment’s maintenance management control officer, the Marines do a good job of getting the most use out of the propeller assemblies before they must be replaced.

It is when parts reach a non-operational state that the detachment relies on a FISDU to bring out replacements. All four damaged propellers will be sent straight back to VMGR-252 at Cherry Point to be repaired in the propeller shop, said Steele.

“We only have a certain number of collateral duty quality assurance representatives in the squadron to do the repairs on the propellers … and we usually don’t have the opportunity to deploy one because they are also repairing all the propellers at Cherry Point,” explained Steele. “Every propeller we install in our aircraft doesn’t come from the depot or new from the factory, but are repaired solely by VMGR-252 Marines.”

Of the three propellers delivered, two were immediately hung on separate aircraft and one was set aside as a spare for future use.

“So the FISDU gives us a lot of flexibility,” said Koltick. “It means we don’t have to deploy a lot of material capability – in other words, I don’t have to keep six spare engines and six spare propellers in Moron – because I have the flexibility back here at Cherry Point. In about a day’s notice we can launch a FISDU out to them, and that is what we did.”


Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point