by Airman 1st Class Jarrod Grammel
23rd Wing Public Affairs
4/15/2011 - MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. -- It is important to flying operations to maintain the engine properly, part of which is performing what is called an "engine run."
An engine run is when an uninstalled engine is put on an engine stand, and tested for functionality. Becoming certified to run this process takes six months of on-the-job training and a specialized two-day course.
This week Tech. Sgt. Brandon Hodges, 23rd Component Maintenance Squadron engine test cell craftsman, is training another NCO on the process of running uninstalled engines.
The engine test cell Airmen of the 23rd CMS do engine runs for a number of reasons.
"What we do here is test TF-34 engines," said Tech. Sgt. Joe Bruning, 23rd CMS NCO in charge. "When we test the engine we do a preinspection and make sure there are no safety issues. Then we hook everything up and determine whether everything is working properly by doing engine runs.
"Running the engine on the stand 'breaks in' the parts so there is less wear from rapid acceleration and deceleration then there would be if it was in the plane," said Sergeant Bruning.
As important as it is to perform engine runs, there is a shortage of qualified Moody Airmen.
"There are currently only two Moody Airmen who are qualified to run uninstalled engines," said Sergeant Hodges. "Two to three Airmen a year are certified on engine runs, and Airmen are required to get recertified every six months."
Sergeant Hodges is a detached instructor and the only Moody Airman qualified to instruct the two-day course.
"The course teaches the process of doing engine runs, emergency procedures, and familiarization with the hush houses and equipment," said Sergeant Bruning. "The first day of the course is in a classroom setting and includes two tests. The second day is the hands-on portion of the training."
Sergeant Hodges who instructs the course explains the hands on training.
"During the hands on training they will complete dry runs," said Sergeant Hodges. "During a dry run the students perform all the normal procedures without actually running the engine."
Engine runs are a necessary part of maintaining the A-10C Thunderbolt II's here at Moody. To increase the efficiency of the manpower in the 23rd CMS, Sergeant Hodges trains other Airmen in the process of engine runs during the two-day course.
MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga.-- A TF-34 engine sits on a T-20 C engine test stand before receiving maintenance and undergoing a engine run April 14. An engine run is when an uninstalled engine is put on an engine stand and tested for functionality. Airmen who are qualified to run uninstalled engines have to get recertified every six months. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Joshua Green) Hi-res