GFC 500.... Field approval for non-listed airplane?

Discussion in 'Avionics and Upgrades' started by Unit74, Aug 9, 2019.

  1. Unit74

    Unit74 Final Approach

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    If a plane is not listed by Garmin as supported for the GFC, can a AP IA get a field approval anyway or is it more complicated than that? I had a discussion where this was introduced and I was like, uh.... Yea, not sure bout dat one.
     
  2. Salty

    Salty En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Technically you can get a field approval for anything, right? All you have to do is show the engineering to the satisfaction of the appropriate faa official. I think it’s figuring out what will satisfy that makes it a challenge few want to face. Am I mistaken?
     
  3. MooneyDriver78

    MooneyDriver78 Pattern Altitude

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    The hard part would be servo installation, designing the brackets to insure no binding or interference, obviously FAA is going to be reluctant when messing with flight controls.


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  4. bnt83

    bnt83 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    It is not practical, and quite likely the FAA will default to "one-time STC" and they will likely want engineering approval of all the structure aspects and mechanical interfaces my guess would be $2k+ per servo for that data (unless you are a mechanical engineer and have DER handy that works for beer money).

    We haven't even gotten to the configuration and flight testing, and yes, the FAA would probably want to fly it. Of course all STC effort involving that have approved ground test plans, flight plans, and risk assessments.

    I think it would be easier to come up with a contract with Garmin, you pay $50k or so to get your airplane added to the AML and then they could pay you $XXXX back for each additional airplane that buys the kit. You want it bad enough and offer enough money I don't see why Garmin, or another ODA would turn you down.

    Since all this stuff is software based and subject to software updates I'd have a hard time doing anything that wasn't supported by the autopilot manufacturer. Alternate route of one-time STC or field approval may require follow-on approval for any additional software upgrades, where if it was all done per Gamin STC AML all that would be covered (typically) for the life of the autopilot.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
  5. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    If it’s a popular “on the list” aircraft the payment can go the other direction. That’s what they did with Troy’s airplane. Leased it from him to do the STC work.

    Worth asking if it isn’t on the list if they want to add it anyway, but as others have mentioned it’s all about the servo mounting and developing a set of instructions and components that that work fleet-wide for the type, as long as the aircraft is unmodified.

    They’re doing the ones they can sell the most to, first... for the most part.
     
  6. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    I saw the end result of the work. A good job was done and Troy is a very, very happy 182RG owner.
     
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