Our Story

On his way to college where he signed up for the Aircraft Maintenance Technician course, our founder, Joe Natale coincidentally saw an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME) working on a helicopter in front of the hangar facing the highway. 

To understand what he was getting into, Joe decided to stop to ask the AME some questions.  To his surprise Joe was asked to pick up some tools to give the AME a hand to replace the engine on a Bell 206 Jet Ranger. They worked a 10-hour shift together and in the end, Joe knew he was on the right path… this was his chosen profession. 

Upon completion of college, Joe worked for the Ministry of Natural Resources in Ontario where he noticed commercial operators did not have a facility to turn to for heavy maintenance or overhaul of components in this part of the country.  Just like the engine change on his way to Canadore College, this was his calling.  

In 1996, Skyline Helicopter Technologies was born.  His first job was a Main Rotor Mast Retorque inspection.  Joe was set to serve primarily Bell Helicopter operators with their heavy maintenance on Bell Long Rangers. 

Bell Mediums were the next step.  But in order to adequately serve his growing client roster, he had to move from a one man show to hiring a skilled workforce.  Soon, local private prospects were knocking on his door to take care of their helicopters: from Robinsons to Jet Rangers to Hueys.

Bell Helicopter Textron noticed the growing trend of activities emanating from Northern Ontario & invited Skyline Helicopter Technologies to represent their products as a Bell Customer Service Facility.  This meant investing in all the required tools, crew training on the helicopters, their components & writing the procedures to carry out  quality maintenance in a repeatable way.  This provided Skyline the license to overhaul Bell Helicopter components & provide a superior client experience.  

Skyline Helicopter Technologies morphed from 100-Hour inspections & changing hydraulic pump type of jobs to Heavy Maintenance checks & full blown frame up refurbishments with structural repairs, the smell of new carpets, new seat covers, the look of new side panels, unloading of pilot workload with updated avionics suites, increased reliability with new wiring harnesses, component overhauls, operational required modifications & sleek new paint works.  

With the Bell CSF as a template, it made sense to add the Robinson Service Center sign on the wall to serve the growing number of Robinson helicopters in helicopter flight training & private aviators.   

Joe also noticed the French Eurocopter AS350 rising in popularity at the start of the new Millennium for Commercial Utility Operators.  Although Eurocopter will not issue Service Centers, Skyline Helicopter Technologies invested heavily in tools & staff training to meet the growing demand his clients were moving to.  With the new capabilities came new clients. 

In 2014, Sikorsky Aircraft Company, now a Lockheed Company realized an uptick in the VIP Corporate market in the highest concentration of the Canadian population: Southern Ontario & South Western Quebec.  They set out to find a Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul provider to serve their clients who were purchasing the Sikorsky S-76 to transport them efficiently.  They quickly concluded the decision was obvious by simply asking Skyline Helicopter Technologies to be the only Eastern Canada Sikorsky Service Center facility since their study revealed a high level of client satisfaction & efficiency in maintenance. 

All along the way, Skyline Helicopter Technologies has never changed their values or procedures: the formula has always been serving the clients with their interests in mind without neglecting their safety.  In Maintenance Repair & Overhaul talk, this translates into efficient Turn Around Times with ZERO tolerance for Quality blunders.  The final result in the eyes of our clients is on budget helicopter maintenance & with superior client support.

If you walk into our hangar, you’ll still find Joe in the Overhaul shop changing TT straps in a Bell 212 head or advising our specialists on maintenance procedures.  If you any questions you can contact Joe Natale at jnatale@skylinehelicopters.com.

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