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Mod Works Inc.


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23 hours 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

1980,

My reference was to Coy Jacobs having passed…

I’m not sure how the chain of ownership is structured…. If Coy owned them, the cooperation owned them, or partners in the cooperation owned them…

They have value… there is always interest in putting a turbo normalizer on an IO360…

No idea if there is a market for any of it since there is no pricing available… hard to take a poll without knowing how much it would cost…

Sorry for the rough details…

Best regards,

-a-

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Lots of speculation in this thread.  Florida maintains an online registry of active judgment liens on personal property:

http://dos.sunbiz.org/scripts/jlilist.exe

Only one is active on Mod Works, Inc., it's not for that much money ($36k), and it might not even apply to a sale of the STC's. Would have to consult a Florida lawyer about that.

The bankruptcy courts also maintain an online records search system.  The company never filed for bankruptcy and is not in active bankruptcy.  The most recent federal litigation about the Porsche Mooneys got settled and dismissed in 2014.  Also the statute of limitations has likely long passed for all of the events people are worried about here, meaning any creditors who wanted to collect have likely waited too long.

All of that to say, it looks like someone could buy the STC's if a deal could be struck with the owners.  I'm not in the market but would like to see them go to a good home for the fleet.

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On 11/30/2022 at 5:27 AM, Z W said:

Lots of speculation in this thread.  Florida maintains an online registry of active judgment liens on personal property:

http://dos.sunbiz.org/scripts/jlilist.exe

Only one is active on Mod Works, Inc., it's not for that much money ($36k), and it might not even apply to a sale of the STC's. Would have to consult a Florida lawyer about that.

The bankruptcy courts also maintain an online records search system.  The company never filed for bankruptcy and is not in active bankruptcy.  The most recent federal litigation about the Porsche Mooneys got settled and dismissed in 2014.  Also the statute of limitations has likely long passed for all of the events people are worried about here, meaning any creditors who wanted to collect have likely waited too long.

All of that to say, it looks like someone could buy the STC's if a deal could be struck with the owners.  I'm not in the market but would like to see them go to a good home for the fleet.

Having the STCs is one thing, but if there are parts involved you then need to have a PMA and that's an approval process also. I've been following the Monroy Long Range tank STC. In this case you have a willing seller of the STC, Jose Monroy, and a credible buyer, Don Maxwell, but I understand now what delays it is the parts manufacturing. 

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The engineering data is the hard part, the STC is just patiently waiting for the FAA to approve it.  As a one-time field approval, that time is significantly less.

I wonder if purchasing the engineering data from Tim Coons but not the STC’s could get around some of the stickier bankruptcy issues.

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20 hours 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.

 

1 hour ago, LANCECASPER said:

Having the STCs is one thing, but if there are parts involve. You then need to have a PMA and that's an approval process also. I've been following the Monroy Long Range tank STC. In this case you have a willing seller of the STC, Jose Monroy, and a credible buyer, Don Maxwell, but I understand now what delays it is the parts manufacturing. 

 

4 hours ago, Z W said:

Lots of speculation in this thread.  Florida maintains an online registry of active judgment liens on personal property:

http://dos.sunbiz.org/scripts/jlilist.exe

Only one is active on Mod Works, Inc., it's not for that much money ($36k), and it might not even apply to a sale of the STC's. Would have to consult a Florida lawyer about that.

The bankruptcy courts also maintain an online records search system.  The company never filed for bankruptcy and is not in active bankruptcy.  The most recent federal litigation about the Porsche Mooneys got settled and dismissed in 2014.  Also the statute of limitations has likely long passed for all of the events people are worried about here, meaning any creditors who wanted to collect have likely waited too long.

All of that to say, it looks like someone could buy the STC's if a deal could be struck with the owners.  I'm not in the market but would like to see them go to a good home for the fleet.

You make some excellent observations and points.  You might be able to strike a deal but one has to wonder why it hasn't already happened years ago - the demand for these mods has only dwindled over the years as the fleet shrinks.  Probably the economics don't work as a business.  What you don't get with the STC or engineering data is the knowhow to manufacture and make it work .....i.e. relearning and some engineering required as @PT20J points out.  There is probably a lot not documented.  @LANCECASPER points out the PMA.  For instance I bet a lot of time and money will be spent trying to figure out how layup and build (and get the manufacturing process approved) for the "Mod Works 201 STYLE" cowling for SA00946AT even with 26 year old paper (or maybe electronic) drawings.  I doubt the mold still exists.  This might interest someone as a hobby - there is someone on MS that talks about doing fiberglass mods on his plane for instance.

 

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I suspect someone could be gifted the entire portfolio of Mod Works STC's and still manage to lose money on the deal with the state of the industry.  That's just the way it is now.

I was <this> close to purchasing the M20 Turbos STC back in 2013 but the seller balked at the last minute.  I doubted then I could "make money" operating that business, but it aligned with some career goals for me, as well as improving my own J and I was willing to give it a go.  Our market is so small, and the cost of many off-the-shelf parts or materials is so high now, that is just doesn't make sense financially in the modern era.  40+ years of tort abuse has essentially killed our GA industry for most of the population, and that is sad.

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On 11/28/2022 at 9:04 PM, 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

You've have hit the nail on the head as to my dilemma.  Except that I don't have the STC for my tail number.  I have the parts from someone else's airplane and some Xerox copies of what I think was the STC for his or her tail number.   Reference FAR 91.403 (d).

In theory, all I need is written permission from the STC owner to install them.  I've already spoke with the Atlanta FAA folks and they gave me the summary that you so well expressed in your post.  It's certainly NOT as easy as some imply -- even if I get the STC declared "abandoned" I still can't install it on my airplane because I never purchased nor do I have written permission to install them on my aircraft.  The "abandoned" status allows you to get the engineering data maintain or rebuild the STC on your own aircraft IF you already have had permission to use it.  This allows for the continued airworthiness of those aircraft with out having to be forced to demod if the part(s) becomes unservicable.

Any one have a line on Tim or Lisa Coons' mailing address?  You can send via private message if you like.

 

Bruce

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55 minutes ago, MisfitSELF said:

You've have hit the nail on the head as to my dilemma.  Except that I don't have the STC for my tail number.  I have the parts from someone else's airplane and some Xerox copies of what I think was the STC for his or her tail number.   Reference FAR 91.403 (d).

In theory, all I need is written permission from the STC owner to install them.  I've already spoke with the Atlanta FAA folks and they gave me the summary that you so well expressed in your post.  It's certainly NOT as easy as some imply -- even if I get the STC declared "abandoned" I still can't install it on my airplane because I never purchased nor do I have written permission to install them on my aircraft.  The "abandoned" status allows you to get the engineering data maintain or rebuild the STC on your own aircraft IF you already have had permission to use it.  This allows for the continued airworthiness of those aircraft with out having to be forced to demod if the part(s) becomes unservicable.

Any one have a line on Tim or Lisa Coons' mailing address?  You can send via private message if you like.

 

Bruce

You can install any major modification on your airplane with "approved data".    You can get that from a number of sources, a DER being one, and an STC being another.   As you mention, obtaining approved data from the FAA for an abandoned STC in order to maintain existing installations is useful, and it may also be useful as a reference for other methods of generating approved data rather than starting from scratch.

The FAA is unique in its approach to intellectual property in that STCs never expire like patents or copyrights.   Patents and copyrights allow the creator to exclusively enjoy the commercial benefits of their IP for a period, and then it becomes public domain.   This is a time-proven, sensible approach to such things, but the FAA, perhaps because their IP field is barely a hundred years old, has not yet grokked the dangers of not expiring technology ownership that users and the industry have come to rely on.   So I sympathize whenever this sort of thing comes up, but it's another area where the FAA has kind of created the problem on their own.

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1 hour ago, MisfitSELF said:

You've have hit the nail on the head as to my dilemma.  Except that I don't have the STC for my tail number.

Not to derail this thread, but it's never made sense to me that these STC's are per TAIL number.

If I paint my plane and change the tail number (as was done to mine in the past) the STC'S are invalid. The registration becomes invalid as well, but that's fixable.

Point is that the tail number can change. But the serial number does not.

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On 11/30/2022 at 9:50 AM, LANCECASPER said:

Having the STCs is one thing, but if there are parts involve. You then need to have a PMA and that's an approval process also. I've been following the Monroy Long Range tank STC. In this case you have a willing seller of the STC, Jose Monroy, and a credible buyer, Don Maxwell, but I understand now what delays it is the parts manufacturing. 

He wanted 100k for the STC. And if you do the math, he was far above a reasonable number. 

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On 12/2/2022 at 1:02 PM, EricJ said:

You can install any major modification on your airplane with "approved data".    You can get that from a number of sources, a DER being one, and an STC being another.   As you mention, obtaining approved data from the FAA for an abandoned STC in order to maintain existing installations is useful, and it may also be useful as a reference for other methods of generating approved data rather than starting from scratch.

The FAA is unique in its approach to intellectual property in that STCs never expire like patents or copyrights.   Patents and copyrights allow the creator to exclusively enjoy the commercial benefits of their IP for a period, and then it becomes public domain.   This is a time-proven, sensible approach to such things, but the FAA, perhaps because their IP field is barely a hundred years old, has not yet grokked the dangers of not expiring technology ownership that users and the industry have come to rely on.   So I sympathize whenever this sort of thing comes up, but it's another area where the FAA has kind of created the problem on their own.

You can’t use STC data as “approved data” to gin up your own mods because  you don’t own the data and didn’t pay for it. 

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8 hours ago, jetdriven said:

You can’t use STC data as “approved data” to gin up your own mods because  you don’t own the data and didn’t pay for it. 

what legal doctrine are you relying up for this conclusion ?

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27 minutes ago, jetdriven said:

The stc is proprietary information owned by someone. You can’t rip that off and use it as approved data for your own field approval. Try submitting it to the FSDO and they’ll tell you. 

If the STC has been determined to be abandoned, FAA Order 8110.120 says in 15.d, 

"The data cannot be used to apply for a new STC or TC."

...but...

"Under the terms of § 44704(a)(5), the FAA may, without the consent of the owner of record, release engineering data to a person seeking to—
(1) Maintain the airworthiness of an aircraft (that is, will use the data to maintain the aircraft to its type design or properly altered condition, and in a condition for safe operation); or
(2) Develop product improvements of an aircraft, engine, propeller, or appliance (for example, change material, eliminate stress risers, make a change to increase durability, or change a tolerance)."

So modifications to one's own airplane using data from an abandoned STC or even making new modifications are both okay uses of approved data from an abandoned STC "without the consent of the owner of record".

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1 hour ago, EricJ said:

I think maybe you didn't fully read what I wrote.

It’s not legal doctrine. It’s not case law. It’s administrative law and somewhere in their FAA handbook and procedures manual they won’t approve it. If you want to develop your own data you can do that. 

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On 12/2/2022 at 12:02 PM, EricJ said:

You can install any major modification on your airplane with "approved data".    You can get that from a number of sources, a DER being one, and an STC being another.   As you mention, obtaining approved data from the FAA for an abandoned STC in order to maintain existing installations is useful, and it may also be useful as a reference for other methods of generating approved data rather than starting from scratch.

The FAA is unique in its approach to intellectual property in that STCs never expire like patents or copyrights.   Patents and copyrights allow the creator to exclusively enjoy the commercial benefits of their IP for a period, and then it becomes public domain.   This is a time-proven, sensible approach to such things, but the FAA, perhaps because their IP field is barely a hundred years old, has not yet grokked the dangers of not expiring technology ownership that users and the industry have come to rely on.   So I sympathize whenever this sort of thing comes up, but it's another area where the FAA has kind of created the problem on their own.

It seems that whenever problems become more and complicated (read ridiculous), it can be traced to the incoherent directives of an incompetent bureaucracy.

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