97 MXS present new landing gear fixture to Travis AFB

  • Published
  • By Todd Dennison
  • 97th Maintenance Squadron

Between February 24 and March 3, 2024, John Hatchell, 97th Maintenance Squadron Fabrication Flight chief, and Lesley Wathen, 97th MXS Fabrication Flight sheet metalworker lead, visited Travis Air Force Base, California to present a C-17 Globemaster III outboard main landing gear (MLG) fixture developed by the 97th Fabrication Flight.

This fixture was developed to aid in the precise fitting of new C-17 aircraft landing gear doors, which can present a challenge due to their unique shape and curvature.

Upon their arrival at Travis AFB, Wathen demonstrated the capabilities of the outboard MLG fixture by assembling it with a C-17 landing gear door. Traditionally, replacing these doors can be time-consuming and costly, but this fixture significantly reduces labor by approximately 24 hours and saves an estimated $7,000 in costs compared to conventional methods. As a result, the fixture has garnered recognition among other C-17 bases.

With the immense size of the C-17 fleet, the demand for trimming fixtures is expected to increase due to door damage caused by fatigue and stress. The personnel at Travis AFB were thankful for Hatchell and Wathen’s visit, and for bringing their knowledge and expertise to their base, as well as expressed interest in future collaborations with Hatchell’s team.