Polyurethane vs. Wood Airplane Chocks

Polyurethane Aircraft Chocks vs. Wooden Chocks

Our polyurethane aircraft chocks are the premium chocking solutions for planes, helicopters, and other air vehicles. Compared with wooden competitor products, our polyurethane chocks are much more durable and feature a longer life span. We frequently work with the military to ensure that our service men and women, and their equipment, stays safe. Here is an excerpt from a case study reflecting the substantial savings switching to polyurethane chocks can create:

Monster polyurethane aircraft chocks“In September of 2002, the 121st AWR purchased 80 polyurethane chocks with the “121st ARW OHANG” logo on imprinted on them from Checkers Industrial Products. The total amount of the contract was $15,101.80. At the same time, 80 wooden chocks were also purchased, for a cost of $7,446.40. Forty of both the wooden and polyurethane chocks were used simultaneously on the flight line. The wooden chocks degraded so badly that they required two replacements. They became waterlogged and froze to the ramp during extremely cold weather. In the hangar where aircraft are washed, the wood chocks are replaced every six months due to the extreme weight from being waterlogged. The 121st ARW has weighed one waterlogged wood chock at 47 pounds, 70% heavier than a Monster polyurethane chock, which weighs 33lbs. Additionally, through continued use, the wood chocks chipped and splintered leaving FOD on the flight line. The 121st used 72 wood chocks exclusively indoors and only for TTF configurations. Within a time frame of 4 years 80% of these chocks cracked, and several warped, despite not being exposed to weather. There was also mold discovered growing on the chocks. In accordance with MIL-PRF-32058 (USAF), these chocks are unacceptable for aircraft use. The polyurethane chocks never froze to the ramp, became waterlogged, cracked or warped. Due to their construction, they won’t move on slippery surfaces. They do not require repainting. The 121st ARW purchases twenty gallons of yellow paint per year to paint the wood chocks at a cost of $500.00. Sand paper, paint brushes and barrier paper add up to an additional $325.00. This does not take into account the man hours required to sand, paint and clean up. The 121st originally projected a ten-year time frame to realize cost savings. However, it quickly became apparent that they will realize cost savings on the initial purchase by the end of the fourth year.

These chocks are to be utilized on the TTF packages (72 total) and for each hangar bay where aircraft are washed (20 total). One polyurethane chock is 2.16 times the cost of a wood chock, however, based on research and historical data, the wood chocks will be replaced approximately every three years. Additionally, these chocks will require over $825.00 per year to paint and maintain them. This doesn’t even factor in a conservative estimate of 360 man hours to conduct this maintenance. In a twelve-year period, the 121st will spend approximately $44,860 to purchase, replace and maintain wood chocks for the flight line, TTF configurations and hangar bays. Alternatively, the 121st could spend $18,400 for polyurethane chocks.”

While this information is eye opening, putting it into table form really illustrates the point:

  • Costs for 92 Aviation Chocks
  • Cost of chocks
  • Cost of painting and repairs
  • Frequency of replacement
  • Cost over twelve year period
  • Polyurethane Chocks
  • $200.00/chock
  • $0.00/year
  • 10+ years
  • $18,400.00
  • Wood Chocks
  • $95.00/chock
  • $825.00/chock
  • 3 years
  • $44,860.00

As the table indicates, switching to polyurethane can be very cost effective, in addition to being a safer solution that avoids FOD. There are many other details and reasons to consider polyurethane chocks.