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3100 Autopilot - S-TEC Autopilot - Program Details


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1 hour ago, rcwagner said:

We have exhausted the options for the GFC500 for my aircraft.  Garmin's service sucks.  They really don't care, they don't have to.

Another option is go on beechtalk, and post something on panel talk and ask for @TrekLawler specifically. Usually he helps a lot. Id give that a shot before spending thousands of bucks removing and reinstalling a different ap.

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I bet a DER could get the GFC approved for modest cost. I don't know who to recommend, but I'd ask your shop, or make an appeal here and on Beechtalk.

I don't understand why an M tailcone would matter...I doubt there is any difference. Did something change with the avionics shelf in the back, or mounting location for servos?

If you're really desperate, I'd make you a deal on my spare J tailcone that you could swap in, but it is here in KS and obviously a shipping issue.

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11 minutes ago, KSMooniac said:

I bet a DER could get the GFC approved for modest cost. I don't know who to recommend, but I'd ask your shop, or make an appeal here and on Beechtalk.

I don't understand why an M tailcone would matter...I doubt there is any difference. Did something change with the avionics shelf in the back, or mounting location for servos?

If you're really desperate, I'd make you a deal on my spare J tailcone that you could swap in, but it is here in KS and obviously a shipping issue.

Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk
 

I think this is the best option, and probably also the cheapest.

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I'm an engineer in the industry, but not a DER. (Would like to be, though)

I suspect an engineering report outlining the part differences between a stock J and your repaired J would be sufficient to get the approval. You could do a lot of the background work to minimize the cost of a DER by collecting part numbers, material details (ie 2024-xxx, 0.0xx thick, etc), drawings from the maintenance manual, etc for stock and your plane. The DER could then use that as a basis to determine that your repair does not result in any form, fit or functional differences related to the GFC installation. It likely is very possible and not prohibitively expensive.

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The M tail cone has an opening on each side of the fuselage, other than that, it is a direct fit to install in a J model.  The difference is a bulkhead in the tail cone is displaced about 1" and interferes with the servo mount designed for the J model.  It would be easy if you could swap the M servo mount out and install it in my M tail cone, but the M mount is not listed for the J model STC.  The M model has its own STC.  Therefore, a new STC for my unique aircraft has to be assembled and approved.  That's where Garmin engineering comes in and they will not do it for a one of a kind aircraft.  I am going with an STEC 55X.  Apparently their STCs are a bit more flexible for Mooneys.

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Thanks to Garmin, I am having to pay $4700 for nothing.  That's what the labor and non-returnable materials are for the GFC500 that the will not stand behind.  Garmin's service is terrible.  STEC on the other hand has come to my rescue and is providing me with a tremendous deal on a 55X.  Garmin's products are pretty good, but the service from their engineering department is terrible.  They do not care about their customers.

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Your choice, but I know you can negotiate a way thru the approval process with a DER...that is what they do. And this instance will be trivial since it will be using a combo of already approved parts.

But you can buy 20 year old tech if you wish. If your shop won't refund your GFC 500 purchase I might be interested in buying the kit if it can be done above board.

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I'm very sorry about your experience but I must say that it differs dramatically from mine.  While I understand how disappointing this is, when my J model went in for the GFC-500 install, the shop found that there was a serial number range that had a wing difference and Garmin modified the roll servo bracket and got it certified for me in 2 weeks.  I have had excellent service from them.  I am sorry to hear you didn''t.

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Thanks to Garmin, I am having to pay $4700 for nothing.  That's what the labor and non-returnable materials are for the GFC500 that the will not stand behind.  Garmin's service is terrible.  STEC on the other hand has come to my rescue and is providing me with a tremendous deal on a 55X.  Garmin's products are pretty good, but the service from their engineering department is terrible.  They do not care about their customers.

I would blame the shop, they should have read the STC limitations before ordering and call up Garmin with questions.


Tom
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Just a PP trying to help out...  there seems to be a lot of discussion that is not getting through...

 

RC,

I think you might want to work with a few people...

But, play with an open hand...

Be extra clear with what you have...

Take a picture or five...

I thought you had the tail of a Bravo on your J...

I know the tail feathers and everything connected to them are going to be different...

A page into this... I think I understand the tail cone you have is a perfect fit for your J, but the access panels may be slightly different...

I would also consider how the parts you have... have been installed on your plane... the same logic can be used while installing the AP...

Big G doesn’t have the resources to get further down the chain of Mooneys where there is already plenty of interest...

It would be really hard to move up on their radar if you keep telling them you have a unique Mooney...

How unique is it?  This is where you supply part numbers and drawings if able...show what is different... show what is the same...

Discussing the challenge through your mechanic seems to be adding to the challenge... get on the same page...

If you want to make headway with big G... Find Trek.  He is a real human being... he sits at BT... and is quite responsive...

Maybe your tail cone won’t work, maybe it will...

You May have to explain the same detail with everyone that is going to try to put an AP in your plane... depending on how the structure of the tail cone is needed for the AP...

I have a long body near identical to a Bravo... I am unfamiliar with exactly what we are calling a tail cone... i’m Pretty sure all AP activity is far from the tail cone... both from the installation, and the operation...

Is it the last six inches, or the last six feet we are talking about?

Is it even touched by the AP installation?

Will the access panels hamper the installation by five minutes?

Can anyone tell that the Bravo part has been used as a legal substitute?

Back to playing with an open hand...

Just a PP trying to help out...

 

Best regards,

-a-

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8 hours ago, 201Mooniac said:

I'm very sorry about your experience but I must say that it differs dramatically from mine.  While I understand how disappointing this is, when my J model went in for the GFC-500 install, the shop found that there was a serial number range that had a wing difference and Garmin modified the roll servo bracket and got it certified for me in 2 weeks.  I have had excellent service from them.  I am sorry to hear you didn''t.

I, too, had unbelievably good service from Garmin when I had my pitch oscillation problem.  In particular, Trek went way beyond the extra mile.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was notified yesterday by my avionics shop that the tail assembly part number on my J model is not approved by Mooney.  Apparently the rebuild shop that installed it did not get approval from Mooney to install the M20L tail assembly on a J model.  My aircraft is now not airworthy ( It has been flying for 8 years since the rebuild).  I contacted Air-Mods for them to get a Letter of Acceptance from Mooney International.  Hopefully Mooney will approve and I can move on.  If not, the tail assembly will have to be replaced with the correct part number.  What a mess.  Lesson:  Never buy an aircraft with damage history.  I also probably will go back to an experimental for my next aircraft.  Certified aircraft have too much red tape.

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I have a good J tailcone in my hangar in KS.

But as I mentioned a few times above, you could very likely engage a DER and get what you have approved at far less cost than swapping tailcones or autopilots.

Keep pressing Air Mods to get their work approved. They should've done so originally, perhaps they did and the records didn't go with the plane somehow?

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  • 3 weeks later...
1 hour ago, rcwagner said:

Air-Mods is working with Mooney to get an 8130-3 form for my modified Mooney J Model.  They have been working it for a couple of weeks, but told me Friday it is nearly complete.  I have my fingers crossed.

Hi,

 Will Garmin now accept your modified Mooney and allow the Garmin Autopilot to be installed? 

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On ‎9‎/‎29‎/‎2019 at 5:16 AM, rcwagner said:

 Lesson:  Never buy an aircraft with damage history.

I would not think that this is valid, but if you do, make sure it is not some modification which may turn up problems eventually.

I would think however that it is up to the shop who rebuilt it to sort this out, as they have rendered the airplane not airworthy. So they should come up with a compatible tail assembly and cover your costs. Letting an airframe fly "illegally" on paper at least is not a very nice thing to discover, so maybe you should explore a route whereby the shop has to sort this out or this may well go legal. Once that is done, your Garmin AP will also be legal.

Possibly Garmin had a point refusing this as they see a non-standard tail and are asking themselfs whether that tail is actually suitable.

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