On July 21, 2000, approximately 1450 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 182R, N101SP, registered to and operated by the Civil Air Patrol (CAP), and being flown by a private pilot, was substantially damaged during the touchdown/landing roll at the John Day State airport, John Day, Oregon. The pilot was uninjured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a flight plan had been filed, but not activated. The flight, which was a combined proficiency flight for the pilot and positioning flight for the aircraft, was being operated as a public use operation, and originated approximately 1345, at Redmond, Oregon.

The pilot was telephonically interviewed and reported that he arrived in the John Day area and set up for a straight-in visual approach to runway 09. He reported that about two miles out he lowered 10 degrees flaps and established 80 knots airspeed. Approximately one mile out he lowered the flaps to 20 degrees maintaining 80 knots, and about one-half mile out he lowered the flaps to 30 degrees, established his speed between 70-80 knots, and then began to flare focusing on the upwind end of the runway (refer to DIAGRAM I, a transcription of a diagram provided by the pilot and the pilot's written narrative attached). He reported that upon touchdown of the nose wheel, a loud "chattering" noise ensued along with an intense vibration. The aircraft's nose wheel bounced twice on the pavement with the propeller making runway contact after the third bounce.

Post-landing examination by an inspector from the Federal Aviation Administration revealed a "zigzag" black scuff mark on the runway pavement slightly left of the centerline. Two gouges in the asphalt roughly perpendicular to the track of the scuff mark were observed near the beginning of the mark (refer to photograph 1). Additionally, the nose wheel tire was observed to be flat and the nose wheel bearings were badly damaged. The airframe and firewall were buckled and deformed, and the propeller tips were observed to be scuffed and bent aft (refer to photograph 2).

The nose wheel, fork assembly and recovered bearings were submitted to the Board's Materials Laboratory for metallurgical examination. The metallurgical report stated in part, "All the bearing components were covered with an abundant amount of a lubricant and exhibited to heat tinting (indicating no evidence of heat damage). The inner race in several areas for both halves of the rim contained marks from rollers. The cage on each bearing assembly exhibited deformation damage." Additionally, the report concluded stating "Bench binocular microscope examination of the fracture surfaces from the submitted pieces revealed features typical of overstress separation. No evidence of fatigue cracking was found in the fracture faces" (refer to attached metallurgical report).

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