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BirdDog

Angled Instruments

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So recently I became the proud owner of an Evektor Sportstar and I am loving it, with one exception. The instruments and gauges on the right side of the cockpit. The really should have been angled back toward the pilot to make them easier to read. To get any accuracy, you have to lean over to the Pax to see the instruments correctly.

 

SO... does anyone have any ideas on how I can rectify this? Maybe retrofit some sort of angled bezels etc?

 

I am open to ideas.

 

Cheers

J

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Just a thought, are you wearing polarized sunglasses? If so, do you have the same issue if you have no sunnies or non-polarized sunnies on?

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Slightly off-topic, but I was once peeking inside a helicopter at Echuca, and the engine instruments looked like they'd been thrown at the panel - nothing was straight, with some instruments up to 45 degrees rotated. It all became clear when I asked the pilot about this; at normal pressures & temps, all the needles should point straight up. This allowed a much quicker check on P's&T's.

 

mal

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So recently I became the proud owner of an Evektor Sportstar and I am loving it, with one exception. The instruments and gauges on the right side of the cockpit. The really should have been angled back toward the pilot to make them easier to read. To get any accuracy, you have to lean over to the Pax to see the instruments correctly.

 

SO... does anyone have any ideas on how I can rectify this? Maybe retrofit some sort of angled bezels etc?

 

I am open to ideas.

 

Cheers

J

 

Yep - I am hoping to speak to my LAME in the next couple of days to get his take on that.

 

It really is an oversight by the factory. After you have sat in the pilot's seat of an aircraft that has all the instruments banked toward the pilot, it becomes quite noticeable.

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Slightly off-topic, but I was once peeking inside a helicopter at Echuca, and the engine instruments looked like they'd been thrown at the panel - nothing was straight, with some instruments up to 45 degrees rotated. It all became clear when I asked the pilot about this; at normal pressures & temps, all the needles should point straight up. This allowed a much quicker check on P's&T's.

 

mal

 

 

Ahahahah! That's actually a brilliant idea when you think of it! LOL!

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In my aircraft I have all the flight instruments on the left straight in front of me & the engine instruments on the right angled so I can see them all accurately. It seem. such an obvious configuration but there are so many factory built aircraft out there that have thrown ergonomics and logic out the window. The same applies to location of controls.

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In my aircraft I have all the flight instruments on the left straight in front of me & the engine instruments on the right angled so I can see them all accurately. It seem. such an obvious configuration but there are so many factory built aircraft out there that have thrown ergonomics and logic out the window. The same applies to location of controls.

 

Did your bird come that way, or did you modify??

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LSA can only be changed by manufacturer approval. It's all in the regs and ACs. But back to the matter at hand. Angled instrument adapter/mounts, 3D printed by some clever guy? Assuming you have room behind the panel to angle the things. Might just be right up Peter Anson's alley..... http://www.ansoneng.com/ as greatest invention since the flux capacitor. Not that he invented that, but I'm sure he could have if he had wanted to.

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LSA can only be changed by manufacturer approval. It's all in the regs and ACs. But back to the matter at hand. Angled instrument adapter/mounts, 3D printed by some clever guy? Assuming you have room behind the panel to angle the things. Might just be right up Peter Anson's alley..... http://www.ansoneng.com/ as greatest invention since the flux capacitor. Not that he invented that, but I'm sure he could have if he had wanted to.

 

I thought it can be modified, with a approval but would likely result in a rego change???

 

I have a mate who just ripped his entire dash out and replaced with glass - how does that happen?

 

I might have to ask him I think.

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Did your bird come that way, or did you modify??

I built it that way. The panel was a rough fibreglass moulding & I finished it cutting all the holes,locating all the instruments etc. I have a centre stick & mounted the throttle, Carb heat & flap switch in a binnacle where my left hand rests at the side. I did my conversion in a J170 & you need 3 hands to operate that easily with a LH throttle, centre stick, carb heat & flap switch in the middle & all the other switches along the bottom of the panel hard to access when fully buckled in. Cessna changed things around all the time as well so it is not just Jabs.

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I thought it can be modified, with a approval but would likely result in a rego change???

 

I have a mate who just ripped his entire dash out and replaced with glass - how does that happen?

 

I might have to ask him I think.

44032 is right. You can not change anything in a LSA aircraft and remain LSA without written factory approval, and you won't get that easily. You possibly could go experimental LSA (ELSA) but that would lower the resale value in my opinion. The instruments may not be perfect but they are eminently useable.

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The joys and limitations of LSA. It's the same with GA. There's no throttle friction adjustment on the Citabria. you'd think someone would (besides me) want that. Hardly rocket science. Take more effort and time than it's worth. Exp GA is the go they say. Is there a glass cockpit option for your ship? Nev

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Slightly off-topic, but I was once peeking inside a helicopter at Echuca, and the engine instruments looked like they'd been thrown at the panel - nothing was straight, with some instruments up to 45 degrees rotated. It all became clear when I asked the pilot about this; at normal pressures & temps, all the needles should point straight up. This allowed a much quicker check on P's&T's.

 

mal

The first time I saw that done was about thirty eight years back at Avalon on a couple of Army Nomads that had come back in for some mods.

The factory had set them up as per normal but the Army boys had spun them around so normal ops were all at 12 o'clock.

Yep a smart idea.

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It only applies to engine instruments and more applicable to multi engines. Your FLIGHT panel should always be in front of you plus a HUD if you have the works. Glass doesn't seem to be the go in bright sunlight, as far as I see it. Nev

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Thanks lads,

 

Shame me for thinking that making my cockpit easier to read might actually make it safer. LOL!

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Shame me for thinking that making my cockpit easier to read might actually make it safer. LOL!

 

The irony being that if a mfg allows you to make the change, does that mean they admit the original config was substandard or unsafe?

This is why it is hard to get them to agree to a change. Fear of liability.....

 

Perhaps asking the mfg whether you should make a report to the RAA about this safety issue or whether it would be fine to angle the gauges might be a way to ...um.... garner mfg support?

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Depends what's being talked about here.

There's nothing wrong with tuning an instrument panel in to your personal tastes, but it also has to be safe for an instructor in the RHS if instruction will take place; and it's not a safety issue if the aircraft could be operated with flush instruments RA aircraft tend to be very squeezy by comparison with big GA aircraft which have operated safely for nearly a century.

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I've been in planes with a glass setups which I can't read at all at least from the passengers seat. The instruments are marketed as " daylight readable" but they are not to me.

And how on earth could angling the instruments towards the pilot ( taking Turbs point about instructors needing to see them) be construed as breaking regulations? I find that idea offends my notions of property rights and common sense.

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I can't believe such a fuss is being made about this to the point of claiming it is a safety issue. I have flown more than 20 LSA or RAAus types ( including owning 2 Sportstars ) and only a few have had instruments angled towards the pilot. I have never found it to be an issue.

 

Turbs with you passion for rules I am shocked you say "there is nothing wrong with tuning an instrument panel to you personal tastes". What about the LSA rule ( and the subject Sportstar would be LSA ) that no modifications are permitted without the written approval of the manufacturer?

 

BirdDog if this is such a big issue I will help you out & buy your Sportstar for what you paid for it so you can find another aircraft better suited to your likes.

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Turbs with you passion for rules I am shocked you say "there is nothing wrong with tuning an instrument panel to you personal tastes". What about the LSA rule ( and the subject Sportstar would be LSA ) that no modifications are permitted without the written approval of the manufacturer?

 

Yes, I should have corrected it to "there is nothing wrong with WANTING TO TUNE"

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I reckon a 3D printer could easily produce some nice angled mounts. And I also reckon that the idea of banning owner "modifications" to LSA does not reasonably apply to such a trivial change.

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I reckon a 3D printer could easily produce some nice angled mounts. And I also reckon that the idea of banning owner "modifications" to LSA does not reasonably apply to such a trivial change.

 

In my experience, unfortunately the majority of those who want to 'tinker' often don't have a clue and shouldn't be allowed to wield so much as a screwdriver.

 

Messing with the instrument panel is fraught with danger for those types of people. It only takes a little lack of understanding and the next thing you have a wiring problem - for example a relocated ammeter, which carries the full current load of the aircraft, might end up with its wiring pulled a little tight perhaps, next thing the vibration has the insulation wearing against an earthed member - and Mr Tinker has a cabin fire on his hands at worst, or a blown fuse/circuit breaker at best. Even the best scenario is the first hole in the cheese lined up. The worst case is too scary to contemplate, an inflight cabin fire.

 

Now that was all very well in the days when we only had single seaters and we all took our own chances with our soft pink flesh, but these days ol' tinker wants to take his unsuspecting mates and fillies for a jolly. Is that fair on them?

 

Now, it might be that he managed to reconfigure the panel without too many problems, but where does it end? Should it be OK for him to add a heater system too, piping the 120C engine coolant through the firewall using some nice Bunnings clear PVC tube and an old oil cooler? Nothing wrong with something so minor is there, and imagine the comfort it'll bring to his passengers? Boiling liquid spraying through the cabin wouldn't be too bad after all, would it?

 

Then ... well I even watched a friend, who DID build his Jabiru from a kit, who therefore was perfectly allowed to make modifications ... as he cut right through the mainspar carry-through in two places and removed a section of it so that he could mount a swing-down ipad up there.

 

Sheeesh! At least as it is with no-one allowed to tinker with a factory-built LSA, subsequent owners have half a hope of buying an unadulterated aircraft that might carry them around with reasonable safety, but seriously, if anyone could make changes to their factory built, would you buy a used one?

 

EDIT - if people are competent rather than tinkerers (and I'm not saying that everyone who wants to change something isn't competent - though many aren't) then why not get a kit to assemble the way they'd like it to be?

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