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Intermountain Turbine Services extends capabilities

Vertical Mag | September 9, 2016

Estimated reading time 6 minutes, 9 seconds.

After developing an unparalleled expertise with the Honeywell LT101, maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) specialist Intermountain Turbine Services has now extended its capabilities to the Honeywell HTS900– the engine that powers the Eagle 407HP and the upcoming Marenco Swisshelicopter SKYe SH09.

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The Lindon, Utah-based company was established by Darryl Christensen in 1993. It sells new and serviceable hardware, as well as complete engines, and offers exchanges on components such as Triumph fuel pumps, Honeywell accessories, and most other repairable items in the engine.

After spending its first two decades with a laser focus on the LT101, Intermountain Turbine has been working hard to establish the same level of capability for future operators of the HTS900.

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“We are the only certified service and maintenance facility in the world right now for that engine,” said Christensen. “We have all the tooling, trained technicians and inventory.”

The process of becoming an authorized service center for the HTS900 has been a long one. “It’s pretty extensive,” said Christensen. “It took six months to just get the tools. Then it’s a matter of building up the inventory and completing the training — which is made more complicated by it being a brand new engine that hasn’t been in service yet. We’ve been with Honeywell, learning right alongside them. It’s pretty in-depth. It’s not an easy undertaking, but we are excited to make an investment into the future of this engine.”

While it’s certainly an exciting time of new beginnings for Intermountain Turbine, the company is still heavily focused on continuing to be a market-leader in the provision of MRO for the LT101, the engine that has formed the company’s core for the last 23 years. It’s an engine for which Christensen has a particular affinity. “I’m pretty passionate about the 101,” he admitted. “You cut me, I bleed 101!”

Christensen’s background is as a maintenance technician, and, when possible, he still likes to spend time working on the shop floor. He established Intermountain Turbine as a small repair station, beginning with buying and selling parts and gradually building up inventory. Since moving into its facility in 1999, Intermountain Turbine has nearly tripled in size. The company opened its own Honeywell engine shop in 2000 and began repairing Triumph fuel pumps in 2012.

Today, Intermountain Turbine offers full overhaul capability on the LT101, as well as being a service center for Triumph’s fuel pumps and high pressure fuel filters. With a staff of 28 working in Lindon, and satellite offices in Phoenix, Arizona, and South Carolina, Intermountain Turbine repairs about 80 engines a year, as well as providing hardware support for operators who want to do their own engine work.

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The company’s customer base is truly global — it services customers in every continent that operate aircraft with an LT101 engine.

“We’re very fortunate,” said Christensen. “We’ve been able to retain about 90 percent of our customer base over the years. I credit this to our ability to support our customers, our knowledge of the engine, and our focus on hiring dedicated employees that want to see this engine succeed as much as I do. I have people on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you need something, we’ll get it to you right away.”

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Mike Matthews, sales director at Intermountain Turbine, said this customer-focused mindset is a key element of the company’s success. “Darryl constantly wants his staff — whether it’s those of us who deal head-on with the customers, or the folks on the shop floor — to understand the importance of meeting the customer’s needs; the need to meet turn times and quality requirements.”

Christensen said his philosophy is to do whatever it takes to keep an aircraft in the air — or get it back in the air as quickly as possible — and this was guided by his experience working for an operator earlier in his career. “I understand that if a helicopter is not flying, they’re not making any money; or, if it’s an air medical operator, they’re not saving somebody’s life,” he said. “It’s critical that we always do everything in our power to make sure that our customers are in the air.”

This philosophy helped guide the development of field service kits, launched last year, that provide everything an operator of a new LT101 or HTS900 will need to get through their 600-hour inspections. “The better they take care of the engine, the less it’s going to cost them when it comes into our shop,” said Christensen.

Though this might seem a counter-productive approach for an MRO provider, it’s easily explained given both Christensen’s dedication to customer service and love of the LT101. “I want to see the customer get the least expensive 1,800-hour inspection that they can. My goal in life is to make sure that these engines stick around.”

www.intermountainturbine.com

801-785-9898

If you would like to see your company featured in Insight, contact sales director Frank Sargeant at frank@mhmpub.com.

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