When to cut off and make new dataplate?

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Aviacs

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Reading the "no bill of sale" post reminded me of a legal Q that i have been curious about.
Relating strictly to amateur build experimentals, suppose you buy a fuselage & pile of parts, fuselage perhaps once having had a USA AWC; or alternately, import an airplane that never had a USA AWC. IOW, no matter how you look at the project, it *will* require a new one (new USA AWC).

Are there any legal issues or downsides to simply cutting off the old data plate and stamping a new one for the new build?
Does having an unused, or even the original (of which there would be no USA record or standing of serial #) plans make a difference?

FWIW, not trying to cheat the build log: which would show parts used, adaptations, build, etc. then FSDO determination if that accumulation = AB; preferably with a FSDO that appreciated that "amateur built" includes all labor in the chain, not just the final applicant.

smt
 

tralika

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You should not assume that anyone at your local FSDO will have any knowledge about Experimental Amateur Built aircraft. More than likely any question you ask will be met with a pregnant pause followed by "I'll have to get back to you". Then you should expect avoidance on their part to make any definitive answer to your question. I had to talk to several different people at my local FSDO (and wait for them to get back to me) before I could get them to process my Repairman Certificate application. It was obvious they did not know what a Repairman Certificate was. They just don't know much about Experimental Amateur Built and don't want to take a chance of making an error.

Most likely they will refer you to a DAR. I suggest you save yourself the trouble and contact a DAR first. I think the only way your pile of parts would meet the 51% rule is if you had the original amateur build logs for each of those parts. Of course, I'm no expert, but the DAR is. Good luck.
 

TFF

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The data tag represents the paperwork. A tag it’s self is meaningless. How do you explain the existence of what you want to call an airplane? If you drug it out of a swamp, do you have proof? Pile of parts, proof? Magically materialized, affidavit from Mr Scott? A safe to fly airplane had to come from somewhere.
 

kent Ashton

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I think most would advise it would be easier to keep the old data plate and when the project is finished, apply for a reissued AWC (assuming the repairs/rebuild are IAW the original type certificate). You'd end up with a certified airplane. However make sure you can get a copy of the expired AWC from Ok. City. That your proof it had one formally and all you are doing is repairs. If you delay, records get purged and the FAA may not remember this airplane. No one but a manufacturer can make a data plate for a certified airplane. If you want to use the parts to build an experimental, there is a limit on how much of the old airplane can be used
 

rv7charlie

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My understanding is that legally, you can use 'stuff' from a previously type-certificated a/c, but if it's a 'major assembly' like wings or fuselage, you get no credit on the FAA's '51% checklist' for that assembly, even if you highly modify it or do extensive repairs (those are repairs and alterations; not 'fabrication and assembly').

If you can convince the FSDO or DAR that it wasn't ever a certified part & was built by some amateur, then you might get away with it, but it doesn't meet the letter of the law.

A DAR might be the path of least resistance, but I have an aversion to paying a private contractor (again) to do the work that my tax money already paid for. And if you know chapter & verse before calling the FSDO, you may well be able to train the FSDO people properly. ;-)
 

Aviacs

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I think most are missing the point.
There is no AWC record in Ok city.
Amateur plans built airplane built, registered, flown in foreign country. Deregistered by law there before sale out of country.

The question is, if a person intends to build an experimental airplane that will include only amateur built parts, some imported from another country, is there an issue with creating their own new dataplate? Taking it further, suppose the fuselage never had a dataplate. Is there an issue with creating one?

I understand that a certified AC can be built around a dataplate, a group of us built & operate one.

Typically, one would not cut a dataplate off even an Experimental if it had been issued an AW, because you would have to then manage the process to ever get another AWC. However, that is a moot point - this AC requires a US AWC no matter how the project is approached.

For an amateur built accumulation of parts that never had a USAWC it seems like the point of build authorization is the set of plans, build log, and serial #. At what point can the person who decides to use the likely parts, use a new serial # & date for what becomes their build?
There is no intent to mis-represent the completeness or lack or completeness or stage of construction of any assembly. Essentially creating a quick-build kit from various sources, which would still likely have some thousand(s) hours of mods, scratch-built systems, and other finish/completion items.

Maybe here's the point: If the steel tube fuselage was disposed of & a new one built, or a never-plated/registered semi-complete fuselage acquired separately; then creating your own dataplate from unused plans for it would not be an issue. Nobody would quibble with the rest of the construction of the airplane using previously built parts including complete wings, & empennage parts. So, is it necessary to throw the existing fuselage out & acquire a similar one elsewhere? Or can you cut off the dataplate and proceed under the exact same plan with a new dataplate for what is indeed a new build? Create a stretch fuselage for which none of the reconstructed parts includes the old dataplate? etc.

Confirming whether the new builder did "51%" of the work is a separate question/not one i asked.

The point about contacting a DAR is a good suggestion, i will take that up.

Thanks!
 

proppastie

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I think you need to prove the parts were amateur built by some one...logs, pictures etc.....not factory built.....so you buy a pile of parts that were amateur built ....and
proceed..........with new dataplate
for example I sold my scrapped MM1 with aircraft log book to prove it was amateur built but specified that the new owner must re-license with them as the "manufacturer".....it will be interesting to see if they use the log book and try to re-license it with me as the "manufacturer"
 

rv7charlie

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In the past, the FAA's position was that if it ever existed (was licensed) as a homebuilt experimental and the a/w cert was surrendered, it could never be an aircraft again. Not saying that it's never been done; it has. But it was wink/nod/we know nothing, relative to HQ interpretation of the law. I've never seen any *documented* case of major assemblies from a foreign-registered a/c being brought into the USA and used in a new homebuilt, so I don't have any answers for you on that one.

I've heard varying opinions on whether it's *legal* to use major assemblies from a previously de-registered US homebuilt in a new build, but I've never seen an official opinion from the FAA about that.

If you have most of the original airframe (or even just a few major bits), it *would* be legal to register it in Experimental Exhibition category, but you can find a way to do that with almost any airframe. Only real downside to Exhib. category these days is you can't get a 'repairman certificate' on it; an a&p has to do the annuals.

But if you want final, authoritative answers, this is the wrong place to be asking. Only the FAA (meaning the guy signing your a/w cert) knows for sure....
 

Aviacs

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But if you want final, authoritative answers, this is the wrong place to be asking. Only the FAA (meaning the guy signing your a/w cert) knows for sure....
Understood.
The questions are to try to formulate the route to take up to that point.

In the past, the FAA's position was that if it ever existed (was licensed) as a homebuilt experimental and the a/w cert was surrendered, it could never be an aircraft again.
Please clarify: Anywhere/ever? Or USA registry?
Canada, for instance, requires an airplane to be de-registered before export to non-Canadian owner.
For a certified AC, the airworthiness stays in place with the dataplate (If it is a type/model recognized in the US).
For an experimental, there is now no longer a record the airplane ever existed.

I sold my scrapped MM1 with aircraft log book to prove it was amateur built but specified that the new owner must re-license with them as the "manufacturer".....it will be interesting to see if they use the log book and try to re-license it with me as the "manufacturer"
This has bearing on my Q.
Doesn't the FAA consider you the manufacturer regardless?
Or did you surrender the AWC? Remove the dataplate? Hence new guy has to apply new dataplate to whatever new build he constructs?

At this stage in life i'm not necessarily dead set against exhibition. But it does not seem necessary, given (potential extensiveness) of other mods desired or needed to make it fit me. It's probably time to talk with EAA & AOPA. Then discover the most likely DAR.

Thanks!
 

TFF

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I know someone with a Polish bush plane project . Worthless. Paperwork on a “certified “ airplane not “certified” other than government decree. There are some Wilgas, AN2s, and Alouwettes out there in the US, but they survive because of money.

If this is some homebuilt project crossing a border that was never completed, it won’t matter. I had another friend buy a flying plane that he needed to get a revised operating instructions and it almost got scrapped. Flying plane, then became a project, went to Canada, came back from Canada, then tried to resume its old identity after restored. DAR signed it back in. . The guys at our FSDO figured out the paperwork was not perfect. They allowed it to survive only by requiring it to fly 40 hours off like a new homebuilt.

If correctly documented ownership of a plane crossing boarders, the country it’s leaving wants its credentials back. It’s their tail number. It’s their airworthiness paperwork. On the other side, you are supposed to pick up the new identity, prearranged of course. A bunch of parts is easy to get across the boarder, leaving a live identity and trying to have a second is what raises the red flags.
 

Aviacs

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Please keep in mind that my intent is to explore the legitimate bureaucratic options, not "game" the system per se.
It seems there are multiple approaches. I would like to sort the sensible ones to formulate a path to compare the value of "shortest time to any AWC vs value of "preferred AWC". (to me)

IOW, putting AC back into last configuration and hauling 30 lbs of documentation to the local FSDO might yield an exhibition category "somewhat promptly". I would be fine with an A & P doing the annuals. However if it limits my ability to work on it, and potentially to change it later, then there are already some mods that need done, and several that would be desired. The time expended could be more or less extensive.
If that is the case, then actively planning the approach so that it becomes a new, amateur built project makes sense.
 

N804RV

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When I first started building, it seemed to me that path to an EAB airworthiness certificate was not quite as structured as it is now. If you had a kit that was on the 51% list, and a builder's log with photos you were good to go. Now, Its seems they want to see the provenance of every sub-kit and major sub-assembly.

Van's seems to me to be very "formal" in their record keeping as far as kit purchases. When I purchased the wings from another builder who gave up, Van's requested a copy of the bill-of-sale, and reassigned that wing kit serial number to my builder #.

I suspect you might want to talk this whole issue over with a EAA tech counselor, and your FSDO.
 

rv7charlie

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Assuming a knowledgeable FSDO, the path to Exhibition should be relatively painless. Having said that, I'm not clear on whether this is all hypothetical, or about a specific a/c, and whether it's a foreign flying homebuilt or a pile of parts, or foreign ?? or ??.

As far as I know, *all* a/c get de-registered in their origin country when they are exported to another country, and are then registered in their new home country. I sold an RV4 (flying a/c, disassembled and shipped in a container) to the new owner in Argentina; after the sale I sent the US FAA the registration showing 'exported'. The new owner then started the registration process in Argentina, but the FAA's database had to clear showing the sale before Argentina would accept their application.
 

TFF

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To the FAA an aircraft is either current or new. Parts are not an aircraft.

If I inherited a flying RV4 but the airworthiness was lost, I would apply for another. As long as I have what the FAA wants for proof. It stays the original airplane.

If you inherited it, airworthiness was returned to the FAA, you might as well get the drill gun out and start pulling off wing skins and take the whole thing down to anything that unbolts. Paint stripper to remove any evidence of its previous life. Now you are finishing a project that had work completed. You are ready for your own glamour shots to complete a new plane. Take some pictures with a 110 instamatic and leave them in the sun for patina.
An airworthiness returned is scrapped in the FAAs eyes.
Hypothetically, what is keeping this arbitrary airplane from being what it is? Hypothetically where does it have to come from?
 

rv7charlie

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My understanding, FWIW, is that the above is what you can maybe get away with, but not the letter of the law in the FAA's eyes. If it was a scratch-built a/c, there's little to prove its history (if any). But most kits (certainly the RVs) have serial numbers (RVs engraved in the wing spar). That number may or may not appear in the FAA's original registration, but it *will* appear in the kit mfgr's records, and if the FAA asks the kit mfgr...
 

Aviacs

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Assuming a knowledgeable FSDO, the path to Exhibition should be relatively painless. Having said that, I'm not clear on whether this is all hypothetical, or about a specific a/c, and whether it's a foreign flying homebuilt or a pile of parts, or foreign ?? or ??
Actually, i have essentially stated "all of the above". Whichever option leads to the most sensible solution to a flying airplane preferably with an EAB, but Exhibition not ruled out. I bought a once flying amateur plans built S2 in Canada. The fuselage needs modification to suit my height, which then means mods to the empennage, leads to some mods to controls for that and other reasons, leads to, etc. It needs other parts made and adapted (new canopy, etc). In the states, a year or so later, i went to a machine shop auction for tooling, and accidentally acquired a pile of parts that amounts to most of an RV3 B project without the fuselage or engine. There is room for miscegenation.

I suspect you might want to talk this whole issue over with a EAA tech counselor, and your FSDO
Covid cut into our WINGS programs but maybe we can plan one for sometime this fall and i'll snag the FSDO guy for another chat.

I'll document related work if/as it occurs until then. Mostly sub-assemblies or accessories, & engine related.

Anecdotes, opinions, advice re my situation: foreign amateur plans-built AC => USAWC preferably EAB continue to be welcome.

smt
 

TFF

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I’m not stating that the take apart rebuild is letter of the law, it’s an example on how far you would have to go to backtrack to pull something off. I picked the RV4 because it could have been scratch built. I know of at least one scratch built 7. Anyway I would call it JoeBob Special. Vans may have SN kits but there is all sorts of subterfuge that is not necessary to get into.

If you got this Pitts from Canada why can’t the Canadian registration be terminated and US picked up? Bringing over something that needs repair is not a reason that it has no airworthiness. It’s not flyable. There is a distinction between legal and useable. If the paperwork is still alive in Canada, it’s probably best to claim the oops I did it wrong, and fix it right.
 

Aviacs

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Sorry, not Pitts.
Sonerai 2
Been reading on the brand specific forum & forgot Pitts made an S2 model.


De-registered in CA.
FAA approved BOS form. As much other paperwork exists as is useful. Up to maybe 10 - 15 kg.
Does that translate to any weight in US? :)
Do FSDO's require it be translated to English?

Nontheless, the airplane needs to be considerably modified to fit me, as described.
Leading to the 2 previously asked questions:
1.)At that point, how far away from consciously steering toward EAB would i be?
Plus to a person who incorrigibly can't not think "what if": the RV-3B spars, wing tanks, flaps, and Hoerner tips have a lot of intrigue.
2.)would Exhibition limit what i personally can do to modify the AC after it is granted? Between A & P "annual condition checks" or at any such time as the notion struck

We/local EAA chapter have traditionally had very good relations with our FSDO. So will look forward to the next event when we can get them down for a presentation. Easier to discuss with show 'n tell anyway. Was hoping that someone here had actually gone through a similar process themselves to add some early familiarization.

Working through this with others' input from all directions has been useful & clarifying.

thanks!
 
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TFF

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With all that you really need to do, you will have to cut it up a bunch. The wing carry through, you stretching the cockpit or laying it back, is the tail length/volume going to be ok, landing gear, engine mount? You might be starting with a Sonerai fuselage, but it’s not going to be one in the end. You really are going to build another plane. Too bad it’s not a playboy then it would be an RV1. Almost a no mans land, because really any direction you go is going to require backtracking. I would be inclined to build a new tail, lots of welding pictures, and claim the wings as already built and call it new. Just seems like a lot of work no matter the direction. Selling or trading to either get an RV fuselage or Sonerai wings would make more sense.

No, the FAA does not read the foreign languages, so when the inspector is there he will ask you to point out certain things. A friend imported something from Europe and when they went through the AD list it took a bit of figuring out. When I did an annual on it, I had questioned one( questioned by the FAA too), figured it out through two different languages. Google translate. I think the FAA kind of gave in because the records were pretty good overall.
 

proppastie

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Or did you surrender the AWC?
yes I did, however I do not understand if they keep the records by N# and or Manufacturer name or both..... my paranoid delusions think that if they change the N# would the FAA ever see the aircraft has the AWC surrendered?
 
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