Contributed by Roy Block, Paint Shop Manager with Elliott Aviation
If you’re in the market for a used vehicle, chances are you want to purchase a car that has been maintained well, runs great and has years of good service left in it. Let’s be honest, though. You’ll also want a car that looks nice. It’s human nature. We have an emotional attachment to these kinds of purchases and tend to want something that is aesthetically pleasing.
The same is true of the potential aircraft buyer. He or she is simply going to be more impressed, more interested in and willing to spend more money on an aircraft that sports a nice, high-quality paint finish than an aircraft that might look okay at 20 feet but that shows flaws and less-than-the-best in its exterior finish when you get close-up.
If a seller or an inventorying broker has an aircraft that needs new paint to make a good impression on potential purchasers, they need to look at more than just new paint. They need to look at taking the aircraft to a high-quality paint shop. That’s because when aircraft buyers look at an aircraft, they notice the little flaws that typically come when an aircraft is painted by a lower-cost facility. They see specs of dirt, crooked stripes, and paint runs. And it causes them to question the functionality of the rest of the aircraft. If corners were cut during an aircraft’s paint application, they wonder, were they also cut in its maintenance and care?
But when an aircraft is painted at a high-quality facility like the paint shop I manage at Elliott Aviation, it is handled with care. The paint stripping, sanding and application processes strictly follow the aircraft manufacturer’s requirements. And we have a downdraft, climate-controlled paint booth and detail focused paint experts who take pride in their work. The care shows in the finished product. The wings look like glass. The stripes are straight and flat. And the main color is smooth and clear.
In reality, though, paint does more for an aircraft than make it look nice. It adds a layer of protection against corrosion, or at least it does if the paint process is handled correctly by the paint facility.
Integrity says a lot in this business. And so does a high-quality exterior finish.
Elliott Aviation provides aircraft services including aircraft sales and acquisitions, avionics, maintenance and parts, paint and interiors, accessories, fuel, aircraft management and private charter. The company has one of the largest fleets of private jets and turboprops in the Midwest and operates three locations: Minneapolis, MN; Des Moines, IA; and Moline, IL. Elliott Aviation is a member of NARA.Visit www.elliottaviation.com for more information.
Roy Block has 18 years of aircraft painting experience and started in aviation with his father’s aircraft painting business in East Central Iowa, where he worked for 10 years painting light aircraft. Roy will soon be celebrating his 9th year with Elliott Aviation, where he started out as a second-shift Paint Tech advancing to Team-leader, Supervisor and now Paint Shop Manager.