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Discussion in 'Avionics and Upgrades' started by Dayron Nunez, Aug 1, 2017.
At some point A&Ps just need to retire. That guy seems like he fits that category.
Of COURSE not, that's why the IA is given the latitude to toss stupidity like this out. (S)he is also given the latitude to use hex head stainless steel hose clamps from the aviation department of the National Aviation Parts Association (NAPA) Parts Store instead of the "aviation quality" stuff from Spruce or Waggyaero.
I suspect that a reasonably savvy owner should be able to do much of the legwork, and just keep the A&P/IA in the loop. However, mechanics have to eat, and support their families too...
I've been trying this myself with mixed success. From what I can tell, FSDO inspectors aren't really keen on talking to non-A&P owners about this kind of stuff. Seems you can get some surface-level information, but I've struggled to get much past that. In other words, FSDO will talk to you in really broad terms about your project, but won't really discuss a) whether they'll seriosuly consider an approval or b) what it'll take to get them to consider an approval. It's mostly been "that sounds like a nice project, have your A&P call me..." And in my experience, most A&Ps and shops just aren't interested in dancing with the FAA for a field approval.
Funny thing, I had a conversation with a senior engineer at the FAA today (not in the FSDO) and he was bemoaning the fact that the FAA gives a lot of individuals a lot of discretion (A&Ps, FSDO inspectors, etc.), but they're all terrified to use it. One of his points was that there is absolutely nothing in the regs that requires airplane parts to be TSOd, and that a TSO is simply one way for an A&P to determine that a part is suitable to be installed on an airplane. But that most A&Ps refuse to install non-TSOd stuff because they don't want to have to actually make an airworthiness decision. Same goes for FSDO inspectors who don't want to grant field approvals because they'd have to actually exercise discretion and make a determination. Easier to just leave that to the manufacturer and the ACO (STC process).
You've just described why every industry NEEDS a few old folks around who really don't need the job. The need for a paycheck quite often leads to the wrong outcome.
It's okay to need the paycheck. Just find the old guy or gal and sic them on the stupidity. They'll know if it's worth the battle.
Jim knows the TSO thing is worth the battle. He's outnumbered by those who need the paycheck but he'll keep shooting. Helps all of us.
There's an old story about the screech owl and the scrooch owl. The screech owl swoops down on the henhouse, grabs the first hen he sees, raises hell screeching and drags the hen out of the house yelling like hell. If he's lucky he'll make it out of the henyard before the farmer has a chance to grab his shotgun and make it one less screech owl in the world. The scrooch owl climbs the henhouse fence carefully, tiptoes into the henhouse, scrooches over to the fattest hen in the house, nuzzles up to her, tells her how pretty she is, and soon their ain't no hen.
Moral, tiptoe into the henhouse, scrooch around carefully, you'll get what you want, and you won't get shot. Raise hell, bother the FSDO with a ton of questions, screech your head off and they'll take a paperwork shotgun to you.
Softly, softly catchee monkey.
Don't forget that transponders and IFR GPS do need to meet TSO and maybe one or two other odd items. Other than that, I agree totally.
Maintainers are given the leeway to make decisions, but aren't being trained and shown how. Then you get owners who want what they think is right and you have to try and educate them. And then the regulator comes along, adding more confusion and non-answers. Not a great situation. But if it was easy, everyone would be doing it!
LOL Pretty much! LOL