This quote is also from my addendum (supplement) to my first report.
This is being reiterated from a later section due to applicability:
Sometimes our Liaison Engineers are so clueless that writing a revision to get a disposition fixed is a useless endeavor. Check out (NCR number) revision 2, I believe. The discrepancy was on two vendor clamps C/T a vendor tube that had damaged cushions. The revision 0 disposition stated to remove and replace the clamps per AMM (Airplane Maintenance Manual). This tag epitomizes the danger of accepting vendor rework per the undocumented "tribal knowledge" PSD way, of just making sure the vendor signature is attached to the tag, without any inspection of the rework itself. I did my usual inspection of the rework. I got the AIPC (Airplane Illustrated Parts Catalog) pages from the Boeing Maintenance Document website that showed the vendor clamp installations. I noticed on the AIPC figure part number listing that under the vendor tube P/N and/or the vendor/clamp P/Ns, that only a (engine vendor) MM (Maintenance Manual) section was listed. No AMM reference was listed. That was why I could not find the removal and replacement instructions for the clamps and tube in the AMM--they were not there--they were only in the vendor MM. I looked at the lower replaced clamp and it was fine--per AIPC, at least. Then I looked at the upper clamp that was replaced. The horrific scene that met my eyes justified in spades why I inspected vendor rework when other Boeing inspectors did not. Even though the airplane was not in all likelihood going to crash because of this one poorly installed clamp, it made you wonder what other more critical components of the engine the vendor mechanic had worked on.
The mechanic had had to remove a bolt to get the damaged clamp off of the tube. In that process they managed to drop the washer that had been under the bolt’s head. They then slapped the new clamp on, probably in an extreme hurry, as instead of the new clamp being butterflied under or over the adjacent clamp as the original clamp had been, they butterflied it’s lugs with the other clamp’s lugs in an interwoven fashion, so that neither clamp would be completely closed when torqued down. Then they reinstalled the bolt, without the washer they had dropped, and then torqued it down, probably with their calibrated arms. Of course, the washer had been required for a purpose, and when the bolt was torqued the uppermost clamp lug twisted with the bolt head due to friction, twisting the clamp into permanent deformity.
Of course, the vendor mechanic was in such a hurry they did not see this, or did not give a damn if they did, and the vendor rep that signed off the work also missed it. I now had to write up the three new discrepancies on the NCR, whereas if I had not inspected the work like my comrades my job would be much easier--like a roller stamping inspector’s life was.
I wrote the revision, and also noted on the revision that there were no instructions in the AMM to replace the clamps, so I had inspected the work to the AIPC instead. I also stated that the rework instructions were in the (engine vendor) MM, I believe.
To make a much too long story finally end, the disposition for my revision came back to state to remove and replace the newly discrepant clamp per the AMM! Yep, same disposition as revision 0 that was incorrect, except the engineer had actually called out a section of the AMM in his new disposition, whereas the whole AMM document number was listed in the original disposition and us line inspectors were supposed to fish for the right section of the AMM to do the inspection to.
I looked at the AMM section the engineer had called out. It only applied to Boeing tubes and clamps, not the vendors. Oh well. I had tried to get the message across in my revision that the vendor MM applied, not Boeing’s--to no avail. I decided not to try again as that would likely be similarly fruitless, and just result in me inspecting yaks at Boeing Siberia.
The Last Inspector