The teeth on the small gear in this landing gear motor were stripped off, requiring a very careful manual gear extension.  Listen to the podcast and see how it all turned out!DSCN1056

The gear motor attaches to the gearbox / drive assembly, which is an amazingly simple, but critical part of the landing gear system on Bonanzas, Barons, Debonairs, and Travelairs.

The red handle is for emergency extension.  The top 4-way arm is for the attachment of the main gear actuating rods and inboard door rods.  The bottom arm operates the nosegear rod.  (This one was not aligned properly on the shaft splines, and may have been a factor in stripping the teeth on the gear motor drive gear.)


A recent A36 Bonanza I inspected had the wrong part number brake caliper installed, which caused the brake to seize when new linings were installed.  (See how the new caliper has more depth available for piston travel,IMG_1899which gives proper clearance and operation of the brakes.)


Here is the difference between an old, rusty, stretched, main landing gear uplock spring, and a new one.  If yours look like the one on the left, it’s time to change them!  I’ve heard that if this spring breaks, there is the potential for punching a hole in the top of the wing.



Gear Motors:

If internal landing gearbox clearance cannot be achieved by adjusting the limit switches, the gear motor may need to be overhauled.  (If the motor is worn, the dynamic braking action may also be weak, and may not stop the gear quickly enough.)

Use caution and safety devices when putting airplanes on jacks, and running landing gear!  If an airplane lands on its nose, significant repairs will be required!


3 Recommendations if you own a Bonanza, Debonair, Baron, or Travelair:

  1.  Join ABS (American Bonanza Society.)  It is a fantastic organization.
  2. Take your airplane to a service clinic, and if possible, take your mechanic with you.
  3. Read the Landing Gear Rigging and Procedures book that was produced by ABS.  It will help you become more familiar with your landing gear system.