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Old September 8th, 2013, 08:40 PM   #1
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Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

A lot of planes I am looking at have Autocontrol IIIB installed w/o altitude hold. Is there an add on device that can be coupled with this to provide pitch control and altitude hold?

Thanks in advance.
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Old September 8th, 2013, 08:59 PM   #2
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Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

STec makes one, but it is about $6k to $10k

Just checked my notes. The system is the System Thirty at $6300 plus installation.
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Old September 8th, 2013, 09:03 PM   #3
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

Second that stec makes an altitude hold add on for auto pilots rather expensive,you could also install an stec 30 with alt hold for about 10k
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Old September 9th, 2013, 06:11 PM   #4
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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Originally Posted by frfly172 View Post
Second that stec makes an altitude hold add on for auto pilots rather expensive,you could also install an stec 30 with alt hold for about 10k
I'd like to know what shop is selling and installing a complete S-Tec 30 for $10K. Last I heard it was pushing $14K at most shops.

In any event, I think the Piper Autocontrol IIIB is a Century IIB with a Piper faceplate, and there is no pitch axis modification or upgrade for that autopilot short of replacing it with a Century III. The Century III is a full 2-axis autopilot including pitch hold, pitch command, altitude hold, and GS coupling (but not Vs command or altitude preselect). I have no idea what this upgrade would cost or how much of the roll axis equipment from the original autopilot would be carried forward.

Installing an independent S-Tec 30ALT would add altitude hold (and only altitude hold -- no attitude hold or GS coupling) to your aircraft without any interaction with the existing autopilot. Cost of that would be about $6K installed, IIRC.

Last edited by Ron Levy; September 9th, 2013 at 06:16 PM.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 06:19 PM   #5
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

I guess I'm not keeping up on prices 10 k quoted was 4years ago.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 07:01 PM   #6
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

I was told that it would be a waste of time upgrading. Told to look for an aircraft that had a Kinf, Century or STec installed.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 07:05 PM   #7
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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Originally Posted by asgcpa View Post
I was told that it would be a waste of time upgrading. Told to look for an aircraft that had a Kinf, Century or STec installed.
The Piper Autocontrol IIIB is a Century autopilot.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 11:29 PM   #8
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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The Piper Autocontrol IIIB is a Century autopilot.
Ron, the avionics guy I spoke to said Century made those for Piper but there are differences. I am so confused.....feel like I should continue to rent. Some folks have told me it took them years to find their plane.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 10:03 AM   #9
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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Originally Posted by asgcpa View Post
Ron, the avionics guy I spoke to said Century made those for Piper but there are differences. I am so confused.....feel like I should continue to rent. Some folks have told me it took them years to find their plane.
I think those people haven't done a good job of looking. I've never had a problem finding a plane I liked and was happy with. Maybe I just have low expectations, or else realistic.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 10:19 AM   #10
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

Totally dependent on the situation.
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I think those people haven't done a good job of looking. I've never had a problem finding a plane I liked and was happy with. Maybe I just have low expectations, or else realistic.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 10:33 AM   #11
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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Originally Posted by asgcpa View Post
Ron, the avionics guy I spoke to said Century made those for Piper but there are differences.
Only differences of which I am aware are the writing on the faceplates and maybe the shapes of the knobs.

Quote:
I am so confused.....feel like I should continue to rent. Some folks have told me it took them years to find their plane.
I've bought four, and it never took me near that long. Given the buyer's market we have right now, things are definitely in your favor.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 02:37 PM   #12
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

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Totally dependent on the situation.
True, but for most planes there is plenty of supply.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 03:16 PM   #13
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Re: Autopilot question Autocontrol IIIB

Not necessarily, and certainly not at the price point and condition that many buyers desire, as one of the leading brokers of those planes will quickly confirm while you're in Dallas.
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True, but for most planes there is plenty of supply.
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