New Canadian Airline Finalizing Major Fleet Refurbishment Project

Credit: OWG

A new Canadian airline is finishing a large maintenance and refurbishment project on its recently acquired Boeing 737-400 fleet before launching operations in November. OWG, a subsidiary of charter carrier Nolinor Aviation, will operate three 737-400s with passenger cabin, avionics and IFE upgrades.

The maintenance and refurbishment work is being completed by Nolinor’s in-house maintenance division, which has been operating since 2001. According to Nolinor president Marco Prud’Homme, all of OWG’s future maintenance work will be completed in-house as well.

Each aircraft has undergone a C check to transition from the previous operator to OWG’s MSG-3 maintenance schedule. Following inspection, the fuselage and wings have been completely repainted to reflect OWG branding.

According to OWG, each aircraft is being upgraded to meet its fleet standard for navigation systems, communication systems, cabin trims and emergency equipment layout. The avionics suite is being enhanced with ADS-B compliant transponders, LPV (localizer performance with vertical guidance) precision approaches capabilities and SKYTRAC’s communication and flight tracking system. They will also be standardized with ARTEX 406 MHz emergency locator transmitters.

Bluebox Wow IFE system
Credit: Bluebox Aviation Systems

Each aircraft will feature the Bluebox Wow wireless IFE solution from Bluebox Aviation Systems, which delivers content wirelessly to passenger devices. According to Bluebox, the system is “about the size of a lunchbox,” lightweight, scalable and easily deployed in overhead bins. OWG is opting for the portable, battery-operated version of Bluebox Wow, but the system also comes as a certified solution with a fitted partition and aircraft power.

The passenger cabins will feature what OWG calls “the world’s strongest and lightest seats made of titanium” and it says it will be the first airline offering these seats on a 737. Cabin sidewalls are being completely refurbished, galleys are being re-laminated and new carpeting is being installed. Additionally, cabin lighting is being enhanced with liTeMood LED mood lighting for ambiance and the cabin briefing system is being upgraded to allow a pre-recorded briefing “to be heard clearly throughout the entire cabin.”

According to OWG, each aircraft will receive an average of 10,000 hr. of work before undergoing their first flight test. The airline says the project “represents an investment of several millions of dollars.”

Prud’Homme says cabin interior refurbishment is almost complete. OWG’s first flight on Nov. 1 will take place between Quebec and Cuba as part of its partnership with Hola Sun Holidays. It received authorization from Canada’s Minister of Transport to provide regular international flight service on July 6, 2020.

Lindsay Bjerregaard

Lindsay Bjerregaard is managing editor for Aviation Week’s MRO portfolio. Her coverage focuses on MRO technology, workforce, and product and service news for, Aviation Week Marketplace and Inside MRO.