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Stranded in south of France - urgently looking for aircraft mechanic for replacing a tire in PA46


I’m desperately looking for a mechanic in south of France (Avignon area) that would be willing to go to Aubenas (LFHO) to help with AOG. The issue is trivial – flat tire, but there are no repair facilities at the airport. I already have the replacement tire and tube, but need someone with basic equipment to replace it.

I already tried ATA Aviation in Avignon, BlueAero in Grenoble and aeroclub mechanic in Montpellier and none are available on a short notice…

I’d appreciate any help or guidance where to look for help.


EPMO, Poland

Maybe a silly suggestion, but would a car garage be able to sort it for you? It’s only changing a tyre if you already have the replacement.

Also, thinking a little outside the box, I see that there are two places within walking distance, just outside the airport road that must be used to dealing with burst tyres on small wheels.

Go karts

These seem to deal with ATVs
Offroad adventures

They are so close to the airfield that a quick walk and chat might just get you the help that you need. A person in front of you asking for help, is harder to refuse than a phone call. An offer of a flight after its fixed might help encourage them to go out of their way to help.

They are both quite close

EIKH Kilrush

Sent you a contact by direct message, did you get it?

Rwy20, I got it, thank you! She is in the plane right now, but I can call her in 2h, maybe this works….

EPMO, Poland

@dublinpilot admire the proposed solutions, but placing an aircraft on jacks probably needs someone familiar in doing this. Having the PA46 tilt back on its haunches might make the tyre replacement look trivial :)

Oxford (EGTK)

There was even someone at the airport willing to help with a car jack, but I did not feel confident about it and they only had metric tools, so there was a concern that Piper being US made will require imperial tools. Besides, I had exactly the same concerns as mentioned by RobertL18C

EPMO, Poland

Nose or main tire? If you are desperate you can lift the plane with enough people but you have to zip tie the suspension and then rest the axle on a piece of wood. But I would only do that if there are really no alternatives. We did lift a main wheel that way once but it takes about 8 people pushing with their back on the wing main spar.

RobertL18C wrote:

Having the PA46 tilt back

If it is the nose wheel (and it sounds like that) you could in fact tie some weight to the hook at the underside of the tail. For a Comanche you need about 100 kg there to lower the tail and raise the nose. That’s the way how you tie down the tail when testing gear operation when on jacks…


No, it is the the right main wheel, indeed nose wheel would have been a bit easier…

@Sebastian_G indeed my “home” maintenance suggested that, but I’m still missing tools to remove the tire…

EPMO, Poland

I seem to remember the story of someone with a light twin. A tyre burst on landing. Everyone fire crew included came out to help move the plane off the runway. If someone had read the flight manual they would have known not to lift the aircraft as it caused the gear to retract and the whole aircraft ended up on the floor with 2 damaged props.
I don’t remember the exact story or the aircraft but suggest you read the flight manual before any lifting is done if not being done by someone who knows this aircraft’s systems, well.

Last Edited by gallois at 06 Aug 13:03
30 Posts
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