FAA, Let us make our planes safer!

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by AuntPeggy, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. ronnieh

    ronnieh Cleared for Takeoff

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    Derek, in Michelin alone, for just general aviation there are four different tires available. Both radial and bias all of which use synthetic compounds. There are many, many different choices including recaps for general aviation..
     
  2. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That's not quite true. Any car that's used on the street (whether home made or not) has to meet certain requirements, and (at least in this state) has to be inspected every year. Any production vehicle must be "certified" relative to emissions, fuel economy, safety, etc....

    That's not quite true, Ted, as safety, emissions, and certain other things ARE cared about (window tint, for example, in my state). And - at least here - there's a state safety inspection every year, and emissions every 2 years. Overall, you're correct, but there are exceptions.
     
  3. ClimbnSink

    ClimbnSink Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Haha cars. I'd guess it is easier to start a new airplane company(not affiliated with the dinosaurs) then a new unaffiliated car company. Those car companies own senators, the airplane companies just rent them once in awhile.
     
  4. Derek Zeanah

    Derek Zeanah Pre-Flight

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    Sounds like I was given bad info.

    Thanks. :)
     
  5. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Not quite - the feds have to say you're OK to start producing planes on a production line... not so with cars.
     
  6. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser!

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    In Michigan there are no yearly inspections. So, here, they don't care. If I cut the catalytic off the Vette, I could run 100LL in it and no one would ever know.
     
  7. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Actually, with cars you do as well. If you build under a certain number of cars a year you don't have to comply with certain federal regulations. Once you go over, you do.
     
  8. wabower

    wabower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Dude must be worried about potholes. Or maybe that he won't get 60k miles on his 172 before the tread won't pass.

     
  9. rcpilot

    rcpilot Pre-Flight

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    Tires are like $80, and last quite a while on airplanes. I'm not sure exactly what the problem is with what we have.

    When a GNS430 costs $5000 and a G1000 more than most cars and every other GPS unit is cheap enough to be thrown into a phone for almost free that's a problem I'd prefer to have addressed somewhat.

    Look at the cost of some of those panel displays you can get for experimentals, you could buy the rest of the plane for the difference in cost.
     
  10. JHW

    JHW En-Route

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    again, it's somethig that cuts both ways. you can install the displays in your certified airplane. I've ridden in a bonanza with a dynon display. But along with those, people often bring up experimental autopilots. I agree those cheap autopilots are great value, but it's not a slam dunk to match an autopilot to an airframe. The high costs of certified autopilots reflect the testing burden that safety in all flight regimes demands.

    I would be willing to take a lot of liberties with parts substitutions, but when it comes to propellors or autopilots to be used under IFR, I'll stick with the certified versions. Propellors and autopilots can kill you via undetectable failure modes easier than any other part of the plane.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013
  11. N801BH

    N801BH Touchdown! Greaser! Gone West

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    Hmmm.. Us plane drivers will smell that sweet scent a mile away... And pat you on the back for your use of 100LL..:yes::yes::):D
     
  12. JHW

    JHW En-Route

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    I've run it in the boat when i couldn't find ethanol-free car gas away from home. I don't dare put ethanol in the fiberglass fuel tanks.
     
  13. ronnieh

    ronnieh Cleared for Takeoff

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    ARC, a couple of things. There are quite a few more phones than aircraft. Quantity does make a difference. However, there might need to be some thought given to VFR only navigation units. I do not have an opinion either way on that. I stated in an earlier post that if I am shooting an approach at night, in the mountains, to near minimums in blowing snow I really prefer to have somebody be REAL sure there are no bugs in the unit. That is just me.

    Part of the problem is the application. The last plane I flew was a turboprop and the cost of the two X30W units was a small part of the equation. The same units in a $30,000 Cherokee is a different situation.

    Perhaps there does need to be some new rules for aircraft below a certain weight, VFR, and operated under part 91 to be able to use some uncertified avionics. I am just not sure how much that would help but, perhaps needs to be looked into. It would take somebody a lot smarter than me to try to figure out all of the unintended consequences. For example how about subsequent owners? Could the equipment be removed and returned to normal service. Lots of questions and few answers.
     
  14. N801BH

    N801BH Touchdown! Greaser! Gone West

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    Yup... And it will run perfectly fine.. and last for years in the tank..:yes:.

    All my piston engines get a dose of 100LL each fall for winter storage...

    Personally I run a 75% 91 octane auto fuel and 25% 100LL cocktail in my experimental plane... I built it using all fuel components that are compatible with alcohol, and I mean even if I run straight methanol in it...

    I really like to use Ethanol laced auto fuel as it helps my performance up high since alcohol has oxygen molecules in it and that makes up for less O2 at 17,500...:yes:
     
  15. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    True, Bill. However the reality is that most states with inspection you can still get around without much effort. Aviation I find has greater following of the rules than automotive.

    When I worked in the auto world at a shop, I drove a car with non-functional brakes to another shop who did our inspections. It got the sticker, I don't think the guy even noticed what kind of car it was.
     
  16. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Oh, yes, I agree - there are those that will ask "do you want the inspection, or do you want the sticker?" I was discounting them....

    But then again, there's another active thread about "pencil-whipped" annuals...
     
  17. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    "Inspected IAW Cessna..."
     
  18. JohnAJohnson

    JohnAJohnson Cleared for Takeoff

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    Flats/blowouts are fairly rare, but have the potential to throw you in the weeds causing possible damage to airplane and people. Run-Flat technology would I think, be a welcome addition to a GA plane, but they are a bit heavier.
     
  19. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    The weight would probably be a hard sell for many, but you do make a good point there.
     
  20. wabower

    wabower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The leak-proof tubes are money well-spent. I seldom need to add air between annuals.
     
  21. Graueradler

    Graueradler Pattern Altitude

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    I could have a house or drive a car as high as I normally fly my plane. Should fire extinguishers for those require pressure testing??
     
  22. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Usually by far in the opposite order.

    Safety is also often used to rationalize the decision when the wallet is empty.
     
  23. poadeleted21

    poadeleted21 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    In MS, the stickers are $5 or $15 depending on which route you go, I'm not sure there's an inspection place that doesn't offer this deal.

    in Memphis they were "free" but required to get your tag, and a miserable experience lining up for hours to get one. If you failed three times, they just gave you the tag.
     
  24. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Our "guaranteed to pass" price was higher, but it sure was popular.
     
  25. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Looked these up - have they been found to contribute to increased survival? The concept isn't a bad one. I've been wanting to do something with the seat belts in the 310 (although these aren't STC'd), which have shoulder harnesses for the front but they are fixed, meaning I can't lean forward to push buttons easily with them on. I could see that being a problem in potential emergency situations, especially since I can't reach things like the fuel shut-off valve if an engine is on fire. I'm also not a huge fan of the short forward seats that come up to about 6" below my shoulders.
     
  26. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Called Amsafe - no plans for adding the belts to the Twin Cessna line.

    I'll just stick to not crashing, then. :D
     
  27. AuntPeggy

    AuntPeggy Final Approach

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    Good idea. We like you.
     
  28. Skylane81E

    Skylane81E Final Approach

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    Here is a thought, what about a "recreational" airplane certification standard that falls between EAB and current certificated planes? Like light sport but with bigger more capable planes?

    AP seems to be moaning about the cost of certificated parts as she has to pay the cost of certification to a commercial use standard
     
  29. Bill Watson

    Bill Watson Pattern Altitude

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    I think that's where we are headed and it would seem to make some sense.

    If you accept that having someone like Vans, build RV10s like they are/will be producing LSA RV12s, then the question is, "what are the restrictions?" I think fly for hire is the basic one. Size becomes another one - twins? turbines?

    There are lots of reasons we may never get there. It could gut the SEL certificated market for example.

    The thing that I don't think will ever work is 'uncertifying' certified aircraft. A lawyer could speak to how liability could be handled, or not. But if the idea is that a uncertified aircraft can now be tweeked and modified by the owner as he/she sees fit, you quickly run into problems. Builders earn their way to that privilege. Yes, even the quickbuild, factory assist builders earn it, and yet even the best will do crazy stuff. Without that filter, crazies will ruin it.
     
  30. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    We're not "headed there". Cessna owns at least one Kansas Senator. ;)
     
  31. Jay Honeck

    Jay Honeck Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I haven't read this whole thread, so I apologize if this has been covered -- but here's my perfect example of how the FAA has reduced safety in certificated planes:

    In Atlas, our Cherokee 235, we have a basic Piper Wing leveler. Better than nothing, but not a real autopilot that can fly you to an airport.

    A few years ago I looked into upgrading it with a modern S-Tec autopilot -- and stopped short when the price hit $15K.

    My Van's RV-8A has a Tru-Trak autopilot in it. Dial in an altitude, and it will take you there. Dial in a rate of descent, it will do that to. Program a destination on your GPS, and it will you fly you to the runway threshold.

    Price: About $3.5K.

    Bottom line -- my experimental has a potentially life-saving safety device that has been made unaffordable by the FAA in my Pathfinder.

    That, my friends, is criminal, and in direct conflict with the FAA's stated goals.
     
  32. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    THIS ^^^^.
     
  33. JHW

    JHW En-Route

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    And now here it is

     
  34. Bill Watson

    Bill Watson Pattern Altitude

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    Yes, but here is what?
    The capabilities and price tags are as Jay describes but it's useful to look under the covers a bit.

    A wing leveler seems likes a pretty good tool for a VFR pilot and plane to just make it more pleasant to fly and to possibly get out of some self inflicted weather corner.

    But now we have all these great APs that are capable of flying 2 axis coupled approaches to practically any runway threshold. Such a system is probably in every new Cirrus out there. I have installed such a system in my '10 around some GRT EFISs, a G430 and a Trutrak AP. At the time I did my panel, it cost about 40% or less of what a fully integrated equivalent Garmin panel cost to put in.

    What's the difference? I've never flown in such a Cirrus or equivalent but recognize the work they've done to provide an integrated suite. There are still many challenges in learning to do the button pushing but it's getting simpler all the time. Do they have a "get level and straight" button yet? For the IFR pilot, the Garmin panels must be sweet and for the VFR pilot willing to make the effort, it would be a great tool and possibly a life saver if needed.

    On my '10, all the pieces work together but required a significant effort to get them to the point where I'm confident in the soup. Many hardware and configuration options, constant software updates, lot's of flexibility. I can load a plan, takeoff, click on the AP and not touch the stick again until over the threshold. Very cool but it's taken a lot of work to get it there. I would challenge even the most experienced pilot, even one familiar with my collection of gear, to figure out how to do that on a first or second attempt. It's an EAB aircraft and panel that's full of capability, relatively low in cost but quite personal though hopefully short of quirky.

    So in the example Jay described, a cert'd AP can be added to the 'ol Pathfinder at some sig $$$. I'm sure there are various $$$ options to upgrade the panel to provide more function and integration but a installed a 2 axis AP that could be directly operated would be a significant upgrade in function and cost. it wouldn't be Cirrus level integration but good stuff nonetheless. My understanding is that certification requirements would put some limits on function and burdens in cost but what would be there would be well documented, not too confusing and useable by trained operators.

    The RV8's capability sound similar to mine. Jay is familiar with what it can do but as a serious and committed VFR pilot, could he fly a 2 axis navigator driven approach with the setup? There's no reason for him to necessarily figure out how to do it but I suggest it would be less than straight forward. There are few standards around how that plane could be setup so one would have to unravel what the builder put in. But the equipment was a fraction of what would be required to upgrade the trusty Pathfinder. On the other hand, operating the Trutrak directly to fly a course, climb to an altitude or hold a vector would be pretty simple and real cost effective benefit of the EAB aircraft.

    So the Pathfinder in this example is certified, can be flown for hire, and otherwise is a known player in the game. The RV8 is an E/AB, is recreational only and is a personal airplane with unknown capabilities and possibly quirks. I maintain there is value in both, appropriate safe guards in both, and they are priced appropriately. Is there room for something in between? I'd say yes but what we have provides a pretty good set of options. Mashing them together by plugging a lot of uncertified gear in uncertified installations in a certified airplane falls short of what we want expect from certified aircraft. Long live EAB aircraft and Jay's RV8!

    Just for reference, in my plane I never directly operate the Trutrak though that's easy to do. My EFIS can drive it or my G430 can drive it. The optimal way to operate it is to flight plan the G430, have it drive the EFIS (which can optionally drive itself) while I 'fly' the EFIS and have the EFIS drive the Trutrak. Full of options, capability and quirks.
     
  35. nddons

    nddons Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Great synopsis. I think that was AP's entire point, and I agree with her.
     
  36. Threefingeredjack

    Threefingeredjack En-Route

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    Here's a novel thought: All those who can learn to live with flying the planes they can afford safely within the performance limits of those aircraft continue to enjoy flying. All other whiners step aside. :dunno:

    Imagine the saved emotional currency and server space.
     
  37. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    You still failed to argue why my Piper Arrow, used exclusively in a recreational capacity, has to be certified. Why am I carrying all this certification premium when the use of these certified cans are by and large not for-revenue? The answer is I don't and Jay's RV-8 is not fundamentally less safe than my Arrow in IFR/IMC. As a matter of fact, according to the FAA, they are allowed to operate in the same airspace under the same rules! He just paid a heck of a lot less for BETTER avionics capability.

    Your argument is similar to those who hold on to 100LL. Because of a small subset of the market, everybody should be beholden to the same cuffs, at the expense of the entire market...

    Accidentally, you've made a great case for owner-experimental. If the lack of certification-cuffing that EAB enjoys is justified by your notion of "operational intent", then Jays pathfinder meets that definition to the same degree that his RV-8A does. Furthermore, both are airplanes that he DID NOT BUILD. So he certainly hasn't "earned" the right to modify on his own accord by the standard of the ivory tower builder crowd, yet he is legally allowed and so far hasn't killed himself in the same operational behavior as he did flying the pathfinder. Enough already with the non-existent distinctions.

    Let's take SEP GA off death row. Let's make Own-exp a reality!
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2013
  38. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Anyone who thinks that no functional or safety issues are discovered through the certification process, thus leading to a safer product, has clearly never been through it.
     
  39. Jay Honeck

    Jay Honeck Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I have a better idea. Let's eliminate the FAA as it currently exists, and start fresh with a new agency that is tasked with promoting general aviation.

    That was FAA's original mission, but it has morphed into the safety-limiting monster we must now endure. IMHO, there is no reforming the beast -- let's kill it, and start over.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
     
  40. Bill Watson

    Bill Watson Pattern Altitude

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    I'm actually trying to make the case for owner experimental. You should own one. But I think you want your Arrow to be able to operate as an experimental and that's where the difficulty is.

    Right now, buying a built EAB is a great way to get what you want. But it's not the same as buying a used certified aircraft. The EAB is an unknown quantity. I certainly don't know that Jay's RV8 is as safe or capable of anything. I'm confident that the basic design is sound and the owner/pilot has done due dilligence to assure this particular example is sound. I know that my RV10 is acceptably safe for my operations. No one buying it can have the same level of assurance, and per some previous postings, I have little liability if I sell it. It is an unknown that requires more diligence on the owners part and a higher tolerance to risk.

    I think a sweet spot is a factory built experimental. To beat that horse once again, a Vans built RV10 would cover a lot of 4 place SEL territory. But if I was building and selling Cirri or 182s, I'd try hard not to let that happen.

    Is it true that most SELs are not revenue producing since rentals and charters certainly are for hire?