Unalakleet Travel Blog› entry 30 of 38 › view all entries
Our replacement turbine was scheduled to arrive at 1:00 p.m. on a DC-6 out of Anchorage. Around eleven, I walked out to the airport and, in a light rain, removed our broken turbine and prepared for the replacement. It was nice working on flat blacktop as opposed to ragged weeds, twigs, and tundra; any dropped hardware or tools could easily be found. Just after one o'clock, we learned that the DC-6 had its own engine problems half way here. It blew a cylinder on one of its massive Pratt & Whitney engines so returned to Anchorage on three. We would be in Unalakleet for at least another day.
By mid-afternoon the rain stopped so Matt and I used the dry spell to completely unload the helicopter. Since he pulled the emergency fuel shut-off upon landing, I had to verify that the valve fully opened when it was re-set. A partially opened fuel valve would cause engine failure at full power settings. Access to the valve was beneath the protective plywood floor so everything had to come out and we had a lot of stuff. The valve was fine and the entire task took less than an hour.