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Mod Works Inc.


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Working from 25 year old memories. I was unaware of a 6 cyl change for the J. All my research back then was K related as that is what I owned at the time. Yes it does seem odd to me to put a more expensive shorter TBO engine into the J without a significant power change. I was involved with Rocket Engineering back about 1996. The slight cost difference between the Rocket and the 262 conversions made the Rocket conversion way more worthwhile. My 231 was converted to a Rocket. Their Missile conversion where a IO 550 was installed in a J was a significant upgrade.

Edited by RJBrown
IO 550 not TSIO 550
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3 hours ago, bluehighwayflyer said:

Have you thought about doing the LASAR brake caliper rotation mod and then just removing your lower gear doors and under wing tear drop fairings all together?  I think this is a much more viable option than many people realize.  

I'm planing on doing this with my K.  It might cost me a quarter of a knot at cruise, at most.

Cheers,

Dan 

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1 hour ago, RJBrown said:

Working from 25 year old memories. I was unaware of a 6 cyl change for the J. All my research back then was K related as that is what I owned at the time. Yes it does seem odd to me to put a more expensive shorter TBO engine into the J without a significant power change. I was involved with Rocket Engineering back about 1996. The slight cost difference between the Rocket and the 262 conversions made the Rocket conversion way more worthwhile. My 231 was converted to a Rocket. Their Missile conversion where a TSIO 550 was installed in a J was a significant upgrade.

That's exactly my thought too. Don't get me wrong - I love Continental engines as much as Lycomings but in the Trophy 221ES conversion, the engine swap also entails a custom fiberglass cowling (and a very heavy one at that!) and custom tuned exhaust system. Unfortunately in the specimen I fly, we recently got the exhaust overhauled, but during the overhaul process, I suspect some dimensions got inadvertently modified. Even after taking the exhaust off, sending it back to the O/H welding shop, getting it reworked (which took a dandy long time) , repairing the fiberglass damage (exhaust had burnt through the cowl in some areas), and putting it back on, there are still some spots that are rubbing, so I'm bracing for Episode #2.

I've never heard the plane run from the outside (since I'm always the one flying it at the moment), but I hear that the custom straight-pipes create an awesome sound. However, I'm afraid the maintenance and parts availability are gonna creep up on this bird fast if we're not careful.

I'd love to see a Missile conversion for myself one day to see how that performs. Everybody I've talked to that has flown one says the converted planes definitely live up to their name.

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11 hours ago, Farmboy561 said:

Bob was partner with Coy prior to Mod Works. There wasn't a modified Mooney until Coy modified the first one. I was part of the original Mod Works team designing the mods and getting field approvals by FAA for the STC's. Some of your stories are accurate but some are not. Too much for me to write in an old post like this, but I was there as one of the major mechanics through it all. Kevin Surrell has passed and so has Coy. I still am in touch with Tim and Coy's daughters. Also a few of the original mechanics. We are all older now and have moved on.


Welcome aboard Farmboy!

There is always interest in some of the aged STCs that Coy had...

One in particular is the ability to add a turbo to the mid body Mooneys...

I know there is a company around here that buys up STCs that are languishing...

It might be an interesting idea to the heirs of Coy’s estate...

There isn’t a way to get rich selling these things...  

But, the legacy would continue... if the STCs were kept alive...

This one seems neither dead or alive...  wanna help blow the dust off of it?

Best regards,

-a-

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I have the mod works STC that allows me to run the a3b6 engine on my F. When I bought my second A3b6 I asked Lycoming what happens to people who don’t already have the stc. Lycomings position is that’s their problem; they don’t have an stc themselves. Although I suppose you could get a 337 for that conversion. 

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  • 1 year later...

After all this, does anybody have an address to write to for permission to use one of the Mod Works STCs?  In my case I physically have the Lo Profile door panels but I don't have the STC for my aircraft.  There's an address for Mod Works on the FAA webpage for this STC but I'm sure they are no longer at their Punta Gorda Airport address.

Any help tracking down who I can write to would be appreciated.

Bruce

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There is a process by which TCs and STCs may be declared abandoned, which can be initiated by requesters.   A TC or STC that has been abandoned allows the FAA to release the data on request.   It may take up to three years, however, and isn't guaranteed to be successful if an heir responds.

https://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/avs/offices/air/abandoned_tc

I don't know whether anyone has started this on any relevant STCs, but as often as this gets asked about it might be worthwhile for someone to look into it.

 

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On 11/26/2022 at 4:48 PM, MisfitSELF said:

After all this, does anybody have an address to write to for permission to use one of the Mod Works STCs?  In my case I physically have the Lo Profile door panels but I don't have the STC for my aircraft.  There's an address for Mod Works on the FAA webpage for this STC but I'm sure they are no longer at their Punta Gorda Airport address.

Any help tracking down who I can write to would be appreciated.

Bruce

They've been out of business for over 18 years

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1) out of business

2) owner is passed

3) their library of STCs have value

4) People are still interested in the STCs

5) May be surviving family members

If there is anyone with STC revival experience, this may be an interesting project…

AOPA legal services may be a helpful tool…

Best regards,

-a-

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On 11/26/2022 at 4:48 PM, MisfitSELF said:

After all this, does anybody have an address to write to for permission to use one of the Mod Works STCs?  In my case I physically have the Lo Profile door panels but I don't have the STC for my aircraft.  There's an address for Mod Works on the FAA webpage for this STC but I'm sure they are no longer at their Punta Gorda Airport address.

 

On 11/26/2022 at 5:32 PM, EricJ said:

There is a process by which TCs and STCs may be declared abandoned, which can be initiated by requesters.   A TC or STC that has been abandoned allows the FAA to release the data on request.   It may take up to three years, however, and isn't guaranteed to be successful if an heir responds.

https://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/avs/offices/air/abandoned_tc

I don't know whether anyone has started this on any relevant STCs, but as often as this gets asked about it might be worthwhile for someone to look into it.

 

21 hours ago, carusoam said:

1) out of business

2) owner is passed

 

19 hours ago, Will.iam said:

So you’re saying there is a chance. 

Mod Works Inc. exists legally as an "inactive" company.  A company can be "active" or "inactive".  An "inactive" company means that it still exists in the eyes of the law but that it has no activity taking place.   Until the company is dissolved, it will still exist.  An inactive company might not "dissolve" because there are claims against it that are unresolved.  An inactive company still owns its assets (STC's in this case) until dissolved.  FAA lists 35 STC's currently owned by Mod Works and listed as "Current".

Tim Coons is listed as the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Agent.  Lisa Coons is also listed as a Secretary.

@carusoam said "owner has passed".  MS discussed last year that Coy Jacobs had passed.  But he parted ways with Mod Works and sold control to Coons.  Same thing with Bob Meier.  Tim Coons wound up owning the business.  But has Tim Coons in fact passed?  Internet search seems to indicate that he is in his 60's still living in Punta Gorda.

@MisfitSELF has a plane where presumably a former owner paid Mod Works for and had installed the Low Profile gear door panels (STC SA00803AT).  But he has no paper work to prove it.  Mod Works would have been able to confirm and reproduce the specific STC for his plane but they are no longer an active business.  However, regardless whether they are "active" or "inactive" they are still a legal entity, (a company) which owns the STC assets.  But their historical business records may or may not exist.

I don't see how the FAA 8110.120 - Processing Surrendered, Abandoned, and Historical Aircraft Type Certificates is going to actually get you the paperwork approving your installed STC.  The company still exists even if it is "inactive". The company has not surrendered any STC's.  The owner and heirs seem to exist which stops the "abandonment" process dead in its tracks.  If the company still has business records showing your installation that is great but don't be surprised if they are gone.  It seems unlikely that Mod Works will release the engineering data or sell the engineering data and STC because if that would have satisfied the creditors they would have done it years ago. - creditors may be blocking any sales.

 

1589680316_modworks.png.613fb4bbda92126ea241cce03996c8fa.png

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37 minutes ago, 1980Mooney said:

 

 

 

Mod Works Inc. exists legally as an "inactive" company.  A company can be "active" or "inactive".  An "inactive" company means that it still exists in the eyes of the law but that it has no activity taking place.   Until the company is dissolved, it will still exist.  An inactive company might not "dissolve" because there are claims against it that are unresolved.  An inactive company still owns its assets (STC's in this case) until dissolved.  FAA lists 35 STC's currently owned by Mod Works and listed as "Current".

Tim Coons is listed as the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Agent.  Lisa Coons is also listed as a Secretary.

@carusoam said "owner has passed".  MS discussed last year that Coy Jacobs had passed.  But he parted ways with Mod Works and sold control to Coons.  Same thing with Bob Meier.  Tim Coons wound up owning the business.  But has Tim Coons in fact passed?  Internet search seems to indicate that he is in his 60's still living in Punta Gorda.

@MisfitSELF has a plane where presumably a former owner paid Mod Works for and had installed the Low Profile gear door panels (STC SA00803AT).  But he has no paper work to prove it.  Mod Works would have been able to confirm and reproduce the specific STC for his plane but they are no longer an active business.  However, regardless whether they are "active" or "inactive" they are still a legal entity, (a company) which owns the STC assets.  But their historical business records may or may not exist.

I don't see how the FAA 8110.120 - Processing Surrendered, Abandoned, and Historical Aircraft Type Certificates is going to actually get you the paperwork approving your installed STC.  The company still exists even if it is "inactive". The company has not surrendered any STC's.  The owner and heirs seem to exist which stops the "abandonment" process dead in its tracks.  If the company still has business records showing your installation that is great but don't be surprised if they are gone.  It seems unlikely that Mod Works will release the engineering data or sell the engineering data and STC because if that would have satisfied the creditors they would have done it years ago. - creditors may be blocking any sales.

 

1589680316_modworks.png.613fb4bbda92126ea241cce03996c8fa.png

Well if creditors are blocking sales, how the hell do they expect to get paid?

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2 hours ago, Will.iam said:

Well if creditors are blocking sales, how the hell do they expect to get paid?

Restructuring an insolvent company is hard.  There are always competing claims by creditors and not enough to go around to satisfy everyone (hence insolvency and too many chasing too few dollars).  And generally, creditors have no faith in the owners and management to do the right thing to maximize proceeds from liquidation.   And one class of creditor is always fearful that another competing class of creditors will get a disproportionate share of anything valuable.  Another way to say it is battling claims and lack of trust by all parties. 

Based upon the horror stories you hear about the hurricane and subsequent downfall of Mod Works, creditors probably include former M20L PFM owners, Continental Motors, other suppliers, banks, insurance companies and employees.  Mod Works may not have been forced into an actual court managed Chapter 7 liquidation because there so few (or no) assets with any cash value.  No creditor is going to spend a lot of time and money on lawyers and financial advisors to force a company into bankruptcy court if there is nothing to be gained in liquidation. It is just more cash loss for the creditor.    I bet any dollar that Coons might liberate through sales of any asset (like STC'S) will go directly to battling creditors. - If Coons does try to sell the STC portfolio, the creditors will likely allege he is selling too cheap and will try to block.  If he does sell all the STC's he still likely wont satisfy all creditor demands so in reality he is basically motivated to do nothing....which has been the case the past 18 years.

If an insolvent inactive company owns some valuable assets, and creditors do trust management then they will go into a Chapter 11 out of court Bankruptcy reorganization (negotiated by management)

If an insolvent inactive company owns some valuable assets, and creditors do not trust management then they will go into a Chapter 7 court managed Bankruptcy liquidation

If an insolvent inactive company does not own any valuable assets, then everyone walks away and licks their wounds.

Edited by 1980Mooney
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Then it sounds like someone could put together an offer to purchase the STCs and contact the creditors to work out a plan to forced Chapt 7, with the proceeds of the sale distributed among the creditors.  And they get something.

And that something is “found moneys” as after this long, the business entities have probably written off the loss and moved on.

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3 hours ago, Pinecone said:

Then it sounds like someone could put together an offer to purchase the STCs and contact the creditors to work out a plan to forced Chapt 7, with the proceeds of the sale distributed among the creditors.  And they get something.

And that something is “found moneys” as after this long, the business entities have probably written off the loss and moved on.

After someone does a lo5 of research, it is possible a buyer could buy the debts for Penny’s on the dollar.   And eventually own enough to force the sale.     Any bankruptcy attorneys here?..


 

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11 hours ago, 1980Mooney said:

I don't see how the FAA 8110.120 - Processing Surrendered, Abandoned, and Historical Aircraft Type Certificates is going to actually get you the paperwork approving your installed STC.  The company still exists even if it is "inactive". The company has not surrendered any STC's.  The owner and heirs seem to exist which stops the "abandonment" process dead in its tracks.  If the company still has business records showing your installation that is great but don't be surprised if they are gone.  It seems unlikely that Mod Works will release the engineering data or sell the engineering data and STC because if that would have satisfied the creditors they would have done it years ago. - creditors may be blocking any sales.

The process described in 8110.120 doesn't cite corporate legal status as a factor in determining whether STCs are "abandoned".    Nothing in that document suggests that an abandonment determination requires that the corporation have been dissolved or no longer exist.   There's a criterion for three years of "inactivity", where: "Activity is evidenced by any record of communication between the holder of the TC and the FAA, operators, maintainers, FCAAs, etc., in the office certificate project file."    The FAA then has a process described in the document by which contact is attempted and if there is no response then the STC may be declared abandoned.

They don't seem to care what the corporate status is, just that there's somebody actually there to respond.   If not, I suspect the viewpoint is that regardless of the corporate status if nobody is responding then safety is better served by making the data available.   If somebody does respond, then the responder can be contacted for the same purpose.

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3 hours ago, Pinecone said:

Then it sounds like someone could put together an offer to purchase the STCs and contact the creditors to work out a plan to forced Chapt 7, with the proceeds of the sale distributed among the creditors.  And they get something.

And that something is “found moneys” as after this long, the business entities have probably written off the loss and moved on.

 

27 minutes ago, Ron McBride said:

After someone does a lo5 of research, it is possible a buyer could buy the debts for Penny’s on the dollar.   And eventually own enough to force the sale.     Any bankruptcy attorneys here?..

I suppose it is possible.  Get ready to start paying $350-500/hour for a corporate business bankruptcy attorney (not a cheap personal bankruptcy attorney).  Given the complexity and time don't be surprised if he bills you 100-200 hours for research.

First think about the creditors.  Companies like Continental Motor, which were probably owed money for engines lost on the M20L conversions in process, will remember.  Although written off that won't stop them from wanting recovery.  And then there are the famously "cheap bastard" Mooney owners.  Expect "PMF Air Inc." (the ones that sued Porsche) to come out of the woodwork.

Think about the nature of the creditors' claims.  There may be different classes of creditors.  Some of the creditors may have been "secured".  I suspect Continental may be a secured creditor.  They will say "I want to be paid in full first" which will "suck the air out of the room" since it means some creditors will get nothing.

Think about the value of the STC's vs. the claims.  Be realistic - I bet the value of these STC's useful only to a slowly dying fleet of planes is already only "cents on the dollar of the claims".

Think about the types of bankruptcy.  Chapter 11 is negotiated amongst the creditors.  Every class of creditor has to agree to your proposed negotiated offer.  If one class, such as the secured creditors, holds out for 100% recovery, the other classes, which may get nothing, will walk.  If you don't get all classes to agree you have no deal - no bankruptcy settlement.  The way you solve it is that you, as the proposed buyer, offers more and more so that everyone as @Pinecone says "they get something".  It is called "Greenmail" - and you wind up paying way more for the company than you planned.

And if you can't get all the creditors to agree then Chapter 7 "Liquidation" is the only way to go.  But you can't force it into bankruptcy unless you are a creditor.  So you personally need to buy out one creditor and become a creditor yourself.  Then you go court and sue for recovery.  A forced bankruptcy Chapter 7 is managed by a judge who will do what he wants as he sees it for all the creditors - possibly not what you want.  There will be an "auction of assets on the courthouse steps" so to speak.  The judge will auction the assets (the STC's) in court.  He may auction the 35 STC's as a package or he may auction each one individually - it's his call.  You need to be prepared with cash to bid in court for the assets (STC's) - settlement is right then and there.  You might be unpleasantly surprised to find that some other party shows up and out bids you (or drives the price up).

So the bottom line risk is that you invest at least $50k in legal fee research, probably another $100k in legal/advisor fees trying to propose and negotiate a Chapter 11 settlement amongst creditors, then failing that you need to buy out a creditor - let's say another $50K, then sue in court for recovery forcing Chapter 7, let's say another $75k for legal fees.. Dont' forget your time, travel and other fees - let's say $25k.  So now you have $300k invested (my estimate is probably low).  Then there is an auction.  Be prepared to win - what would you pay for 35 STC's?.  If auctioned as a group let's say $350k.  

Possible outcomes:

  • You invest $300k cash and lose the auction.  If you bought the debt of an unsecured creditor your may only get a few thousand dollars in recovery.  Then you need to approach the new owner of the STC's and somehow negotiate and pay something more to get your STC paperwork for your already installed STC. 
    • You have invested about $300K cash for no physical improvement to your plane other than a piece of paper
  • You invest $300k cash and win the auction for $350k.  So now you have $650k cash invested. 
    • You can now create your own paperwork for your STC that is already installed. 
    • You can try to administer the STC's as a business or try to sell them to someone else.
  • You can just forget about Mod Works, sell your plane, go buy another plane without any STC paperwork issues.
  • You can just forget about Mod Works and fly your plane as is - surely there are 337's on file with the FAA when the work was done so that it has been airworthy the last 20-30 years since the mod was done.

The last 2 options are probably the only ones that make economic sense.

 

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2 minutes ago, EricJ said:

The process described in 8110.120 doesn't cite corporate legal status as a factor in determining whether STCs are "abandoned".    Nothing in that document suggests that an abandonment determination requires that the corporation have been dissolved or no longer exist.   There's a criterion for three years of "inactivity", where: "Activity is evidenced by any record of communication between the holder of the TC and the FAA, operators, maintainers, FCAAs, etc., in the office certificate project file."    The FAA then has a process described in the document by which contact is attempted and if there is no response then the STC may be declared abandoned.

They don't seem to care what the corporate status is, just that there's somebody actually there to respond.   If not, I suspect the viewpoint is that regardless of the corporate status if nobody is responding then safety is better served by making the data available.   If somebody does respond, then the responder can be contacted for the same purpose.

You are right - if either Tim Coons or Lisa Coons (both of which are listed officers and I think are alive) or their heirs or anyone who owns any % of the shares of Mod Works Inc (even one single share) responds to the multistep Due Diligence process that the FAA must go through (registered and certified letters, public posting, etc.) then the Abandonment Process is stopped dead.  With the internet and social media it is easier than ever to contact the owners.  And the FAA has become very risk adverse so they are going to be careful about being accused of "stealing STC's" from valid owners.

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59 minutes ago, PT20J said:

If the STCs have any value, wouldn’t it be simpler to reverse engineer them and apply for a new STC?

I think you have hit the nail on the head. The STC’s aren’t worth much - certainly not enough to resolve debts and claims.  No one is going to waste time and money on lawyers to try to free them.  It is probably less costly to just reverse engineer and see if that might simplify the FAA STC approval process. 

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I just looked at the list of STCs. Most don't look very interesting. And, most don't seem like they would be that difficult or expensive to replicate on a one-off basis either as a field approval or one-time STC. A couple of engine swap and cowling changes would require engineering. The portfolio would be valuable if you were to open a mod shop for older Mooneys. But I sure wouldn't buy them (if they were for sale) in the hopes of making any money with them. Which is probably why they sit. LASAR has some STCs that they don't support any longer for the same reason.

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11 minutes ago, PT20J said:

I just looked at the list of STCs. Most don't look very interesting. And, most don't seem like they would be that difficult or expensive to replicate on a one-off basis either as a field approval or one-time STC. A couple of engine swap and cowling changes would require engineering. The portfolio would be valuable if you were to open a mod shop for older Mooneys. But I sure wouldn't buy them (if they were for sale) in the hopes of making any money with them. Which is probably why they sit. LASAR has some STCs that they don't support any longer for the same reason.

Where can one find the list of STC's from ModWorks?  Just curious.

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5 minutes ago, Greg Ellis said:

Where can one find the list of STC's from ModWorks?  Just curious.

Go to drs.faa.gov

Select Design and Production Approvals in the left column and then Supplemental Type Certificates.

Select Mod Works in the drop down list in the STC Holder form field and click Apply.

 

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