The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

Duncan Aviation at NBAA: That's a Wrap

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Fri, Oct 24, 2014 @ 11:49 AM

More than 26,000 people from 49 U.S. states and 95 countries around the world attended NBAA14 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, that included 1,100 exhibitors and 100 aircraft on static display.

And it was all kicked off during the Opening Session with this…

Lee Bowes, Duncan Aviation Regional Manager, officially kicked off NBAA14 with a beautiful rendition of The National Anthem.


During NBAA, we offered a comfortable place to sit and the opportunity to talk to our most valuable assets: our people. Because tt is our people and their relationships that allow us to rise above the rest. 

Over the last three days, hundreds of aviation professionals, operators, enthusiasts and even students came to visit us at our booth and hundreds more went to static and got a personal look and tour of this Embraer Legacy 600 that Duncan Aviation completely refurbished both inside and out, performed a 96-month inspection and installed Wi-Fi for Embraer Executive Jet’s PreFlown division. At time-lapse video can be viewed here:


As always, we had fun at NBAA. We hope you did too. Have a look at our NBAA photo album below. 


Duncan Aviation’s 2014 NBAA Awards


Read more about it here


If you stopped by and talked to us this year, "Thank You!"

Please take a moment and share with us your favorite Duncan Aviation experience and relationship. 

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions

Day 3: Duncan Aviation at NBAA—Static

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Thu, Oct 23, 2014 @ 11:42 AM

It is day three of NBAA! Have you been to Static?

Take a trip to the Orlando Executive Airport and drop by NARA static display–220 and check out this Embraer Legacy 600. It has been completely refurbished both inside and out with a 96-month inspection and Wi-Fi.

Click on photos to enlarge. 


Along with its incredible physical transformation, the aircraft boasts a new Aircell GoGo Biz Broadband solution, as well as the Aviator 200 Swift Broadband solution alongside several custom additions, creating an efficient, effective, comfortable business jet.


We also paired up with Embraer Executive Jet’s PreFlown division to develop a timelapse video showcasing what it takes to inspect and update an Embraer Legacy 600. To watch the video, visit


Tags: Interior Refurbishment, Wi-Fi, Paint Refurbishment, NBAA

Day 2: Duncan Aviation at NBAA—And The Award Goes To…

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Oct 22, 2014 @ 04:13 PM

During the first two days of the 2014 National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Meeting and Convention in Orlando, Florida, Duncan Aviation has been recognized separately by three OEMs as a top dealer.

Duncan Aviation’s 2014 NBAA Awards

Duncan Aviation President Aaron Hilkemann was present to accept many of these awards and believes they represent the great relationships Duncan Aviation shares with its OEM partners. “Duncan Aviation is founded on the principle of working together with all of our OEM partners to provide our mutual customers with an experience unlike any other in the business jet market.”


(L to R) John Slieter, Robert Duncan, Joachim Naimer, Paul DeHerreraClick to enlarge

Universal Avionics 2014 Top Dealer in North America

During an in-booth reception on Wednesday, Universal Avionics awarded Duncan Aviation the 2014 Top Dealer in North America. This is the third consecutive year Duncan Aviation has received this honor. 

This award represents the outstanding performance of only one North American dealer out of several hundred in its Authorized Dealer network.

Universal Avionics President and Chairman Joachim "Ted" Naimer and CEO Paul DeHerrera presented the award to Duncan Aviation’s Chairman Emeritus Robert Duncan and John Slieter, Duncan Aviation Vice President of Sales.


2014 Bombardier Authorized Service Facility Excellence Award for North America


(L to R) Aaron Hilkemann, Todd Duncan and Robert Duncan. Click to enlarge

Also on Wednesday, Duncan Aviation’s Provo, Utah, facility was recognized by Bombardier as the top authorized service facility in North America for its superior support of Bombardier customers.

Duncan Aviation's Aaron Hilkemann, Chairman and CEO Todd Duncan and Robert Duncan, accepted the award from Stan Younger, Bombardier Business Aircraft Vice President, Service Centers and Chris Milligan, Director, Authorized Service Facilities for Bombardier.

This is the fourth year in a row that a Duncan Aviation facility has received this award. In previous years, Duncan Aviation’s full service facilities in Battle Creek, Michigan, and Lincoln, Nebraska, have been recognized.

TrueNorth Top Tier Dealer for 2014


(L to R) Jeff Beutel, TrueNorth Regional Sales Manager, John Slieter, Mark van Berkel.  Click to enlarge

Duncan Aviation received recognition Tuesday afternoon from TrueNorth Avionics as one of the company’s Top Tier Dealers for 2014, representing TrueNorth’s Simphone product line.

John Slieter accepted the award from TrueNorth’s CEO Mark van Berkel.

More than 30 Duncan Aviation representatives are attending NBAA this year, representing several Duncan Aviation services, including airframe and engine servicespaint and interior modificationsavionics and parts support and aircraft sales and acquisitions.

Stop by the Duncan Aviation NBAA booth #208 to congratulate the team.

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions, Announcements

Day 1: Duncan Aviation at NBAA—Let The Games Begin...

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Tue, Oct 21, 2014 @ 01:34 PM

It is opening day of the 2014 National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Meeting and Convention in Orlando, Florida, and the excitement is palpable among the 1,000 show exhibitors.


In Duncan Aviation’s booth (#208) hundreds of business jet owners and operators and NBAA attendees have already stopped by to talk to the Duncan Aviation representatives attending NBAA this year, representing several Duncan Aviation services, including airframe and engine servicespaint and interior modificationsavionics and parts support and aircraft sales and acquisitions.

NBAA Static

Don't forget to stop by the by the NARA section of the static display and check out this Embraer Legacy 600 that features a Duncan Aviation 96-month inspection including, full paint and Wi-Fi. Or watch the transformation here on this incredible time-lapse video


Lee Bowes, Duncan Aviation Regional Manager

Oh Say Can You See...

During the Opening General Session Duncan Aviation’s own Lee Bowes sang the National Anthem to a standing room only crowd.  


Stop by to see us in booth #208. We’d love to see you. 

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions

NextGen Mandate Timeline & Cost Benefit Analysis

Posted by Kate Dolan on Thu, Oct 16, 2014 @ 01:48 PM


Click below to download Duncan Aviation's NextGen Mandate Timeline.

NextGen is shorthand for the Next Generation Air Transportation System, and it’s all about tapping into the technology available in our digital age to make air travel and communications safer and more efficient. Shifting from a ground-based air-traffic system to a satellite-based system will give air-traffic controllers (ATCs) greater ability to track and communicate with aircraft.

Monitoring aircraft over land and sea will result in shorter, more direct routes (reducing fuel consumption and saving time) and fewer delays. When ATCs can see and communicate with all of the aircraft in their airspace, they can put the aircraft closer together so fewer aircraft will stack up on runways, awaiting takeoff.

When you consider the cost of upgrading your avionics equipment and are tempted to take advantage of the exemption, be sure to weigh the following factors. And keep in mind that you’ll usually be flying oversea routes at night.

Cost / Benefit Analysis

Without the upgrade, you will:

  • Fly outside the six, optimal tracks
  • Use more fuel per trip, increasing costs
  • Fly less safe routes—less situational awareness from flying crowded routes at night, relying solely on sight as opposed to ATC guidance
  • Experience flight delays—priority is given to aircraft that are in compliance

If you go with the upgrade, here are a few of the benefits—tangible and intangible:

  • Faster flight times—priority given to aircraft in compliance
  • Use one of the six North Atlantic tracks (NAT), increasing fuel efficiency and time
  • Enhanced safety with constant pings from ATC

NextGen Mandate Timeline

Transitioning the safety of the skies from ground-based tracking systems to satellite-based systems of air traffic control requires new standards and upgraded avionics equipment.Check our timeline to see what mandates may apply to your aircraft and when.

Tags: Avionics Installation, NextGen

Avionics NextGen Mandates: We Have You Covered

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Oct 15, 2014 @ 02:19 PM


Duncan Aviation's Avionics Satellite are located within 200nm of 90 percent of the 50 busiest general aviation airports in the United States.

In addition to your everyday and AOG avionics needs, they lead the industry for avionics installations to meet upcoming NextGen Mandates.

Featured Installs

  • APA/BJC - Gulfstream IV: Aircell Axxess II with Gogo Biz® Wi-Fi install

  • FXE - Broadband/Wi-Fi install on a charter fleet for flight in Caribbean

  • HOU/IAH - Duncan Aviation’s Wi-Fi STC for Learjet 45 aircraft was engineered in HOU on a customer’s fleet

  • MKC/SUS - Falcon 900B: Dual NZ-2000 6.1 software upgrade with WAAS/LPV in customer’s hangar

  • PDX - Global Express: First Inmarsat high speed data upgrade with Broadband/Wi-Fi router

  • STP - Installing USB power port installations on a fleet of eight aircraft

  • TEB/MMU - Falcon 2000: Broadband/Wi-Fi install

  • VNY/BUR - Boeing 727: Future Air Navigation System (FANS) compliance including: Flight Management System (FMS), Universal UniLink, Iridium phone, Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR), Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance (TCAS) 7.1, Cobham SwiftBroadband and transponder (TDR) upgrades to Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) DO260A

Avionics Satellite Directory


Duncan Aviation's Avionics Satellites are strategically based at more than 25 business airports across the United States. Each location is interdependent, sharing staff and resources to support customers anywhere they land, live or hangar their aricraft. 

Click on photo to the right to download your copy of the Duncan Aviation Satellite Directory. 

Tags: Avionics Installation, NextGen

NBAA 2014: It's All About the Relationship

Posted by Danielle Kavan on Thu, Oct 09, 2014 @ 09:54 AM

As the only family owned MRO with thousands of team members and a presence that spans the globe, what helps us stand out, what makes us different, what allows us to rise above the rest, is our people and the relationships they develop and maintain year after year.

That focus will be very apparent in booth #208 at the 2014 National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Meeting and Convention in Orlando, Florida.

Fall-Debrief-Cover_blogFrom left to right: Project Manager Gary Dunn stands with Chief of Maintenance Greg Hamelink and Avionics Team Lead Matt Collins in front of three aircraft they've worked on together at Duncan Aviation's BTL location.

Why do relationships matter? Don’t all customers want the cheapest price and the fastest turntimes? Sometimes, yes. But when it comes to the jet your family, friends and co-workers fly on, you want a trustworthy individual you can call anytime about anything. You want to work with a place that values their team members, creates a sense of community and leaves a lasting impression.

Our customers demand a company that lends a hand to others instead of looking only at the bottom line. We want to convey that we value your needs as if they were our own. Customers aren’t just a number. They become part of our family.

Those relationships are the reason why our tech reps spend a holiday with their customers after helping them out of an AOG situation. They’re also why our project managers plan family vacations with customer reps and road bike together on the weekend when their jet is in one of our many hangars.

Those relationships extend beyond the one-on-one interaction. Teams who work with OEMs and others in the industry develop new products and improve existing ones because that collaboration and trust was built alongside a friendship.

So, this year at NBAA, we’ve opted not to build a brand new booth. Instead, we offer a comfortable place to sit and the opportunity to talk to our most valuable assets: our people.

Come, cultivate a new relationship and see why Duncan Aviation is an experience, unlike any other.

For more information, visit Duncan Aviation at booth #208 at NBAA 2014 held Oct. 21-23 in Orlando, or watch for announcements at

Tags: Conventions & Exhibitions, Customer Service

Duncan Aviation Parts Team Connects with 82 Countries

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Oct 07, 2014 @ 11:21 AM

Duncan Aviation Parts Chat

How can we best reach our customers all around the globe at any hour? Via online chat, of course.

Earlier this year,  the Duncan Aviation Parts and Rotables Sales team launched live online chat support, and their team has already connected with thousands of customers in 82 countries—instantly.

“Customers seeking parts and rotables sales information can talk to a real person, at any time and get immediate answers to their questions, such as stock quantities, pricing and availability,” explains Parts and Rotables Sales Manager Chris Gress. “They don’t have to pick up the phone or send an email. It has been a great tool.”

Email can take minutes or even hours to get a response and phone calls can be expensive for international customers, but Live Chat is an instant message window, providing that immediate response customers demand.

The Live Chat button is visible on all Parts and Rotables pages when a representative is available.

Duncan Aviation’s team has connected with the following countries:

Albania Ecuador Malta Russian Federation Venezuela
Argentina Egypt Mexico Rwanda Vietnam
Australia El Salvador Republic of Moldova Saudi Arabia  
Austria France Namibia Singapore  
Bahrain French Polynesia Nepal South Africa  
Bangladesh Gabon Netherlands South Korea  
Belgium Germany New Caledonia Spain  
Belize Greece New Zealand Sri Lanka  
Bolivia Guatemala Nicaragua Suriname  
Bulgaria India Pakistan Switzerland  
Canada Indonesia Panama Taiwan  
Chile Israel Paraguay Tonga  
China Italy Peru Turkey  
Columbia Japan Philippines Uganda  
Costa Rica Kazakhstan Poland Ukraine  
Croatia Kenya Portugal United Arab Emirates  
Czech Republic Lithuania Puerto Rico United Kingdom  
Denmark Luxembourg Qatar United States  

Read more about Duncan Aviation Parts Chat window in the 2014 Fall Duncan Debrief. 


Tags: Parts & Accessories

Duncan Aviation Hosts Manufacturing Day Event Dream It, Do It

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Fri, Oct 03, 2014 @ 11:32 AM

Today, October 3rd, is Manufacturing Day! 

Did you know the highest salary and benefits of any industry in America belong to the manufacturers? Yeah, neither did I!

Yet, only 35 percent of parents say they would encourage their children to pursue a manufacturing career, despite the advanced skills and high pay that are characteristic of work in today’s advanced manufacturing industry.

This is due to a perception of manufacturing that existed a generation ago but does not represent the current reality of the industry.

Manufacturing Day addresses common misperceptions about manufacturing by giving manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show what manufacturing is — and what it isn’t.

Today, more than 1,400 manufacturers across 49 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and three Canadian provinces are hosting events and inviting high school students, their parents and educators to come for a visit. 


Left to right: Duncan Aviation Sheet Metal and Avionics Line Technicians

Duncan Aviation "Dream It. Do It."


Todd Duncan talks to students from area high schools about the opportunities at Duncan Aviation.

Duncan Aviation is hosting a "Manufacturing Day - Dream It. Do It." event today at its Lincoln, Nebraska, facility. During this all-day event, more than 100 high school students from Lincoln and the surrounding area were welcomed by Duncan Aviation's chairman, Todd Duncan and his wife Connie, guided on a tour of the company's newly constructed maintenance hangars and visited with Duncan Aviation employees about the opportunities available in the business aviation industry.

Sponsored by The Manufacturing Institute, the "Dream It. Do It." program is designed to address the national and local skills shortage by helping students, parents, and educators understand the global and local challenges employers are faced with when trying to find skilled workers.

This program provides a pathway to obtain the necessary skills that lead to career opportunities with local companies like Duncan Aviation to strengthen our economy.

Duncan Aviation is the largest family owned aviation maintenance company in the world and employs more than 2,000 aviation professionals around the world. To learn more about the career opportunities at Duncan Aviation, visit

Tags: Careers & Recruiting

From the Chairman: Todd Duncan

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, Sep 30, 2014 @ 11:40 AM

Investing. It’s a bit of a gamble, but if done well, the rewards are worth the risks. At Duncan Aviation, we invest in our facilities and our people. We know those key elements lead to an incredible customer experience.


From left to right: Todd and Connie Duncan pose on the LNK ramp with their twin sons Harrison (left) and PK (right). A team member works on an engine. Hangar H houses, almost exclusively, Bombardier Challenger and Global aircraft.

Our Facilities

As part of our strategic plan, we invested $100 million in updating and improving our facilities during the past 10 years and plan to invest another $100 million during the next decade.

Two years ago, customer requests and the trend toward larger, long-range business jets resulted in the building of a larger, more modern paint facility. Once it was complete, we considered our maintenance hangars. They were full. Actually, they were bursting at the seams. We knew we needed more space to meet customer demand.

Doing the Right Thing for Our Customers, Our Facility and Our People

So we built an additional hangar facility. Yes, it was a huge investment during a time when the economy wasn’t booming. Yes, it was a bit risky. Yes, we chose materials that would make the facility environmentally responsible.

The first hangar bay opened in January. The second was complete in May. Since then, the new hangars have been full of large business jets while our recently updated older hangars still service the light and very light jets. It’s already apparent the addition was vital to remain flexible enough to provide services for our customers.

Our People

In order to provide the best customer service, we also need to invest in our people. By providing a great work culture, maintaining a focus on wellness and safety and investing in the proper training, our team members will benefit professionally and personally. They will also make careers at Duncan Aviation and provide a wealth of knowledge and experience to our customers that they simply can’t find elsewhere.

So far, that belief has worked, evidenced by the fact that we have 245 people in our Silver Wings Club, which honors those who have dedicated 25 or more years to the company.

In order to provide top-notch service, we need to be up-to-date on all aircraft training. That technical training accounts for a large portion of our training budget. The rest is dedicated to training leaders, helping our team members move into new, more diversified roles and broaden their knowledge.

Besides the traditional technical and “soft skills” training, we have a subsidy program that reimburses team members for some of the expenses they occur when obtaining private pilot licenses and instrument ratings. After all, Duncan Aviation was founded with a passion for flight, and we want team members interested in flying to have the opportunity to do so.

When I reflect on the business we have built around our passion for aviation, I see proud team members, an immaculate facility and customers who love their experience so much that they refer friends and colleagues. That tells me we are doing the right thing. We will continue that tradition, because we are Duncan Aviation.

Duncan Debrief

The Fall 2014 Duncan Debrief is now available. In this issue, you can read more about how we invest in our facilities and our people to create an incredible customer experience.

The Duncan Debrief is a free. You can subscribe to receive a printed copy of the magazine or access the current and past editions online at

Or if you are truly on-the-go, the Duncan Debrief is available on Apple’s Newsstand for the iPad.

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting


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