M7 Aerospace has announced an “M7 Merlin” program through which it will extensively refurbish an executive Fairchild Merlin in the same San Antonio 426,000-sq-ft factory facility where it was originally built.
“As the OEM, we have resources, assets and tooling not available to other shops,” said Chester Schickling, v-p of business development. “An M7 Merlin is a unique product, and with all the available options it is as close as you can get to a brand-new airplane.” The company, which acquired the assets of Fairchild Aircraft in late 2002, displayed its first M7 Merlin at the NBAA Convention in November. It currently holds the type certificates for the Merlin/Metro fleet and is actively supporting the types with parts, product support and training.
The program is available in two forms: existing Merlin owners can bring their airplanes to M7 Aerospace for refurbishment. At that time they can choose from a host of upgrades and improvements ranging from something as simple as an annual inspection to a complete restoration of the aircraft, including new paint, new interior, new avionics, overhauled engines and propellers and all components zero-timed. Pricing varies with the options selected.
The other option is to select an airplane M7 Aerospace has acquired and refurbished to M7 standards, including fresh paint, a new leather interior and optional cabinetry and avionics upgrades. Aircraft are delivered with fresh ABCD checks. Pricing is expected to range from typically $900,000 to $1.5 million, depending on options selected and the age and model of the aircraft. The M7 program applies to Merlin IIIBs and Merlin IIICs.