Avionics News March 2018 - 25

PHONE: 530-359-8751
WEBSITE: flytruckee.com
FACILITIES: 6,400 square feet

WHAT THEY DO:
Sierra Aero is a limited Part 145
repair station and Cirrus service
center focused on small general
aviation aircraft.

D

rawn by the gorgeous setting, great flying,
and a market need, Jeff and Jessica Fay
opened a new aircraft maintenance shop
at Truckee Tahoe Airport in
2012. Jessica, a native Swede,
and Jeff, a native Brit, met in
Thailand while teaching scuba
diving to tourists. They decided
to settle down near Lake Tahoe,
an area Jeff Fay knew well.
Although businesses had closed
and the airport was quiet, the couple saw potential.
"It was six years ago," said Jessica Fay, who oversees
day-to-day operations. "It was very slow up here. The

Sierra Aero owners Jessica and Jeff Fay brought aircraft
maintenance services back to Truckee Tahoe Airport.

FOUNDED: 2012 by Jeff and Jessica Fay
EMPLOYEES: 5
AEA MEMBER SINCE: 2017

two maintenance shops had closed. There was nobody
here. Local operators were looking for someone to do
basic maintenance. So we jumped on that. When we
started Sierra Aero, it was just me
and Jeff, a toolbox, and a really
small hangar."
An A&P with 20 years of experience, a 5,000-hour pilot and flight
instructor, Jeff Fay brought muchneeded aviation expertise to the
area. He was quickly welcomed
by pilots with small general aviation aircraft in need of
annual inspections, maintenance, and transponder and
pitot-static system checks. Just as the doors opened,
Jeff Fay was deployed to Afghanistan as part of the
National Guard flying CH47 Chinooks, leaving Jessica
Fay to manage the business on her own for a year.
"At the time, I didn't actually have any aviation
background," she said. "Apart from flying with Jeff,
my instruction in aviation was starting and running
this business. We hired two mechanics who worked
for me while he was gone."
Jessica Fay learned quickly, and the business
grew with most customers either based in Truckee
or owning a second home at Lake Tahoe. In 2014,
the couple moved the shop from a tiny hangar to one
capable of accommodating five aircraft at once. In
2016, Sierra Aero was designated as a Cirrus service
center, adding more customers and a bigger workload for the company's five employees.
To accommodate the growth, Sierra Aero is hiring
more staff and expanding its existing hangar's footprint by more than 25 percent later this year.
"The growth has a lot to do with the electronics,"
Jessica Fay said. "With the ADS-B mandate deadline
coming up, we do a lot of transponder installations.
As an Appareo dealer, we're installing Stratus, but
Continued on following page
avionics news

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march

2018

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http://flytruckee.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News March 2018

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