Tooling Tech Advances To Simplify MRO, Tool Tracking

Snap-on Industrial MicroLithium Mini Drill
Credit: Snap-on Industrial

1. New Technician Tools

Company: Snap-on Industrial

Snap-on Industrial has been manufacturing hand tools, power tools and tool storage for the aviation and aerospace industries for more than a century. This month it released new angle-headed, 14.4-volt MicroLithium Mini Drills, which it says enable precise drilling without the need for tethering to an air source. The company says the product gives technicians unhindered access to hard-to-reach areas where small holes are needed while removing tripping hazards caused by air hoses in the hangar and around the aircraft.

AeroTools Connection altimeter
Credit: AeroTools Connection

2. 737 Next Generation Tooling

Company: AeroTools Connection

Founded in 2010, AeroTools Connection provides specialized aircraft tools and test equipment for commercial and military aircraft to customers such as AAR, Aeroman, Flightstar, and the U.S. Air Force and Navy. In addition to providing fuselage, landing gear and engine tools, it also offers technical support on maintenance tools and ground support equipment. AeroTools Connection is currently focused on manufacturing the whole line of tooling for the Boeing 737 Next Generation, and the company says it is expanding its government projects.

Venture Research Task Kit mobile tool drawer
Credit: Venture Research

3. Technology For Tool Tracking

Company: Venture Research

Venture Research provides hardware, software and services for the MRO industry that use RFID and Internet of Things (IoT) technology to track and manage tools and assets. Its products include an RFID Surface Reader to track tool removal and a Task Kit mobile tool drawer with a work surface and touchscreen display. It also provides TagAware software to manage tools and materials, as well as services including RFID tagging and encoding, tool serial number etching and custom laser-etched foam boards to store tools. Venture Research is about to release a next-generation Industrial Forklift Reader that uses RFID, sensor and IoT technology.

AGSE aircraft ground support equipment
Credit: AGSE

4. Tooling and GSE Expertise

Company: AGSE

Headquartered in Los Angeles, AGSE provides a variety of aircraft and engine tooling, as well as ground support equipment (GSE), for what it says are the top programs in commercial aviation. It says a variety of airline, MRO, OEM, lessor and armed forces customers use its tools, including Air France, FedEx, GE Aviation and United Airlines. AGSE says it is Pratt & Whitney’s preferred manufacturer of shipping stands for its PurePower Geared Turbofan (GTF) engine family. AGSE has sold more than 1,000 GTF stands to support MRO operations worldwide.

Guill Tool & Engineering internal spline tool
Credit: Guill Tool & Engineering

5. Machining For Tooling

Company: Guill Tool & Engineering

Guill Tool provides custom machining of tooling for aerospace, defense and other industries. It offers merchant machining services to the aerospace industry, including 5-axis machining, high-precision machining and full wire electrical discharge machining capabilities. It says typical products machined through this service include brackets, latches, engine components, fine hole cooling channels and structural mechanisms. This year it also began production of a new internal spline tool for the aerospace industry made of anodized carbon steel.

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.