# Definition of an "engine-driven electrical system"?

Discussion in 'Instruments / Avionics / Electrical System' started by cluttonfred, Apr 9, 2019.

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1. Apr 11, 2019

### cluttonfred

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C'mon, Marc, haven't you figured it out? Because we're cheap and don't want to pay several thousand dollars just for the privilege of entering the 30 nm Mode C veil around a major airport without entering the actual Class B airspace.

2. Apr 11, 2019

### Marc Zeitlin

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Hey - I'm a cheap bastard as well - just ask my family. "We can afford this" I hear them say. And my response is "We can afford this because I NEVER BUY IT".

At any rate, I certainly sympathize with the desire not to have to spend a substantial portion of the cost of smaller, cheaper, slower aircraft on a new device, although I've managed to convince myself to spend $35K on an IP replacement for my 17 year old instrument panel, due to starting with the need to upgrade to ADS-B... Go figure. There may be valid reasons for not requiring ADS-B Out. And whether a plane has an engine driven electrical system, and what the exact definition of that is, may be a strange reason to exempt (or not) an airplane. But using arguments that can be demonstrably proven false with the investment of 2 minutes of research isn't going to help the case. I would argue that any plane that has an engine that generates electricity SOLELY for the purpose of running itself is NOT an engine driven electrical system. I would argue that if the plane has an engine that generates electricity for ANY purpose other than keeping the engine running IS an engine driven electrical system, and is not exempt from the transponder or ADS-B requirement. But I'm not the FAA, and who knows what they would say if asked. I just wouldn't want to find out the answer through their enforcement mechanism... My$0.02.

3. Apr 11, 2019

### TFF

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The answer is... don’t get caught. If you do, play dumb. If the plane looks the part, no one will question. If you get written up in SA, because you want to show off, someone will call the bluff. Most FAA don’t know these rules unless they had to question it before. What they are trained to do is ask the question to you then ask their supervisors. If the answer is the same, they move along. If not, you will have to defend yourself. You actually might be right, but it will keep moving up their chain until someone does agree with you. Not one of them will stick their neck out and loose their pension.

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4. Apr 13, 2019

### Joe Fisher

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The Dawn Patrol bunch flew Small scale Newport 17s with VW engines. They had chainsaw engines for starters. It looked like it worked pretty good.

5. Apr 13, 2019

### Joe Fisher

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6. Apr 13, 2019

### TFF

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The Kitplane articles by Ron W on the dawn patrol were some of the best articles written.

7. Apr 13, 2019

### Toobuilder

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Today's starter motors and battery technology will be lighter, easier and more reliable than those chainsaw contraptions. Starting the engine is not hard.

8. Apr 13, 2019

### Wanttaja

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You're half right.

The articles were actually written by Dick Starks.

Ron Wanttaja

9. Apr 13, 2019

### TFF

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Missed it by THAT much.

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10. Apr 14, 2019

### pictsidhe

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Whatever happened to hand propping? Yeah, the hand crank starting on the early RR Merlins proved to be a bit too much exertion, but anything direct drive in our size range should be quite feasible.

Some quick calcs show that a \$99 20V drill driver may be enough to start a 627 v-twin. It wouldn't even need a dedicated aeroplane battery, just grab a charged battery from your tool kit. Should run a radio for many hours, too. Good chance of being able to charge it at many airports if it is a major brand, too. I want around a 2.6:1 reduction ratio, which will make my engine feel seven times bigger for hand propping, so I'm a little dubious that hand propping will work for me. But there are recoil starters for the v twins that will work. Direct drive would be easy to hand prop.
A bigger ground charged tool battery system could be a light option for those running real airplane engines, too.

11. Apr 14, 2019

### Wanttaja

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Bring back the Hucks starter!

Ron Wanttaja

12. Apr 14, 2019

### recmob

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I've been installing a lot of Dynon equipment in my clients aircraft. I understand your sentiment here, but I have to say that at least where I'm flying after scanning for traffic and THEN looking at the screen, I'm surprised at just how many aircraft are out there that aren't picked up in the visual scan. I don't want to spend the money either, however I can certainly see the benefit of it.

13. Apr 14, 2019

### BJC

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Nice job, Ron.

How long did that take?

BJC

14. Apr 14, 2019

### Toobuilder

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The need for a transponder is not universal. I personally think that using the "no electrical" excuse to get around a transponder in high traffic areas is pretty silly these days, but I do object to the ADS-B mandate for aircraft that steer clear. My Rocket and RV-8 go high, far, and penetrate all airspace. I have no issue equipping them to coexist with other traffic. On the other hand, The T-craft and my "someday" Pitts will rarely leave sight of my house. Really no need for even a radio in these. The Pitts will get electronic ignition though, and that's the rub. And while many a Pitts is hand propped, in this age of miracle batteries and lightweight starters it just doesn't make sense to me. Much rather be strapped in and completely in control during the engine start.

So I think the thing to do for my future Pitts is to build it as a total loss electrical and then down the road add the "ignition system sustainer" SD-8 alternator. If some of the excess capacity from the alternator happens to leak into the battery during flight, so be it.

15. Apr 14, 2019

### TFF

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First it’s government, they always want a head count. It would have been nice to to assigned an altitude. 5000 ft AGL and above requires ADSB. I would be happy with 3000 ft. Below and out of B/C airspace, optional. Unlucky that is not what they put in affect. It’s dumb to not have it if traveling or if the traffic is high. Simple airplanes should remain simple. Complex airplanes should not be trying to pull
One over. ADSB is just in the beginning, once it is ten years old, I expect an adjustment if the government keeps cutting services.

16. Apr 14, 2019

### Wanttaja

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Did it several years ago, but IIRC, it took less than an hour for the Photoshop work. Hardest thing is matching the contrast and color palette of the two images. It's easier to work in black and white, though I'm still not happy with the Hucks starter image.

But when 'shopping in a Fly Baby picture, the thing that takes the most time is finding a picture taken at about the same angle.

Fortunately, Drew Fidoe (the owner of that camouflaged Fly Baby) takes a lot of shots of his airplane.

Because of that, I do *lot* with Drew's airplane...

(Drew...a retired RCN sailor...named his Fly Baby, "Stringbag," hence this photo)

Bill Hills has a camouflaged Fly Baby, too, and I've used his as well....

They're more fun when they're subtle....

Far, FAR too many more examples at: http://www.bowersflybaby.com/stories/altered.HTM

Ron Wanttaja

17. Apr 14, 2019

### pictsidhe

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Is that the Shuttleworth Hucks? Many of their groundcrew wear white coveralls. Those seem impractical for wartime...

18. Apr 14, 2019

### Sockmonkey

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Looked at some portable generators. The littlest ones weigh around 20 lbs and 150-200 bucks.

19. Apr 15, 2019

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