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Duncan Aviation

Challenger 300

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Duncan takes dated CL300 from mundane to magnificent
The Challenger 300 had a mid-2000s look about it that the buyer didn't like. As soon as his purchase was completed, Duncan was able to get on with making it look like it had just rolled off the production line.
The team changed one of the rounded stripes to a pointed stripe, and modified the design to create a sleek look with a logo to the tail.

Duncan Aviation's full-service MRO facility in Provo, Utah took a dated CL300 and transformed it to look like a brand new aircraft. The aircraft was at the facility for a pre-purchase evaluation, and work began immediately after the purchase transaction was completed. The aircraft received a new interior, partial paint and minor maintenance work before being delivered to a happy customer.

Associate designer Amie Jensen explains that the team had all the materials purchased ahead of time, and the second the pre-purchase evaluation was completed, it rolled into interior work. "We wasted no time," she says. "The interior had a typical, mid-2000s look with light wood, ultra-suede and yellowing components. There wasn't anything unique about it."

The team took the worn and dated interior and transformed it to look like it came straight off the production line. Jensen said the owner sent inspiration photos of what they wanted to do to with their aircraft.

"We would be in video communication with the owner halfway across the world as he showed us different samples of what he wanted," says Jensen. "This is a great example of how we cater to our customers' individual needs. Whether they are on-site in one of our design centres, or on an international video call in their home, we take the necessary steps to assist them in the decision-making process."

The interior of this CL300 is highlighted by reupholstered seats with two-tone patterned headrests, a new countertop in the lavatory, vinyl flooring, grey and white patterned carpet and new shades.

The aft lavatory countertop has complex curves, which presents a unique set of challenges when working with a rigid material like corian. The Duncan team has been refining its techniques for applying this material to more organic shapes, and is now able to shape corian into different profiles.

"Before this new capability, the only option to customise the material was to paint it, and we had difficulty customising lavatory countertops because of it," Jensen continues. "Because of this capability, we were able to instal a new, customised corian countertop in the lavatory."

The seats utilised Duncan's automation technology, which for upholstery includes machinery for the precision cutting of seat covers and foam, computerised sewing machines for stitching and quilting, and automated design software to create seat models and generate dress cover patterns tailored to customer specifications.

"Using the automation technology ensures there is conformity across all of the seats," says upholstery team leader Brandon Crosby. "The automation process helps us provide a great product." The upholstery shop created two-tone patterned headrests that are highlighted by a sliver of black around the base.

"The seats are a huge reason the new interior looks great," says Jensen. "The sliver of black really makes the seats pop and adds a unique touch."

The existing shades had plastic components that have a tendency to break or lose strength over the years. The team found a manufacturer that utilises a more durable shade that is simpler to maintain.

"The maintenance on these shades is a lot easier to perform," says interior completions team leader Clay Witte. "If the pleats begin to lose rigidity, it will be quick and easy to swap out. We have been very satisfied with this new product and anticipate using it quite a bit."

The customer previously operated a Hawker XP, and wanted the paint on the CL300 to reflect what they had on the Hawker. The paint shop and design team came up with a solution to modify the existing stripe scheme instead of repainting the entire aircraft.

"We changed one of the stripes from a rounded stripe to a pointed stripe, and modified the design to create a really sleek look," says Jensen. "We also added a logo to the tail. It was a creative interpretation of the design they had on their Hawker.

"We worked directly with the customer, understood their needs, and got them exactly what they wanted," Jensen concludes. "We were pleased to deliver this aircraft to an extremely happy customer."

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