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  #1  
Old 01-12-2020, 01:16 PM
Larry DeCamp's Avatar
Larry DeCamp Larry DeCamp is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Clinton, Indiana
Posts: 904
Default ELT requirement / suggestions ?

I have read the threads and AOPA/FAA stuff. Still questions :
1- Is a PLB acceptable or not ?
2- If not, what is best 406 option ? Artex, Kannan,Other ? Why ?
3-Suggestions for RV4/RV8/Rocket ( ie. tandem) install to optimize :
A- Easily accessible.
B- Antenna location.
C- Antenna cable protection in crash.
D- Antenna location if inverted on ground.
Your thoughts much appreciated !
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RV-3B flying w/7:1 0320 / carb / Pmags / Catto 3b / Steam
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Last edited by Larry DeCamp : 01-12-2020 at 02:22 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-12-2020, 03:57 PM
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RV6_flyer RV6_flyer is offline
 
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Location: NC25
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry DeCamp View Post
I have read the threads and AOPA/FAA stuff. Still questions :
1- Is a PLB acceptable or not ?
2- If not, what is best 406 option ? Artex, Kannan,Other ? Why ?
3-Suggestions for RV4/RV8/Rocket ( ie. tandem) install to optimize :
A- Easily accessible.
B- Antenna location.
C- Antenna cable protection in crash.
D- Antenna location if inverted on ground.
Your thoughts much appreciated !
1. NO. It does satisfy the FAA requirement.
2. Depends. ACK is what I have.
3A. Not that important.
3B. Needs to have good VSWR.
3C. Must work so that aircraft will be found.
3D. In the event of a crash, I am more concerned about survival of the individuals and the wreckage being found.
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2020, 04:59 PM
rocketman1988 rocketman1988 is online now
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Sunman, IN
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Default So...

So, if you follow the manufacturers instructions, the antenna is to be mounted on the top of the fuselage, at least two feet from anything else.

When the aircraft flips over, the antenna is now sticking in the ground and being shadowed by the fuselage...so I guess if you have a "crash", don't end up inverted?
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  #4  
Old 01-13-2020, 06:21 PM
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gmcjetpilot gmcjetpilot is offline
 
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Default

What RV-6 Flyer said.

What brand? Look at Aircraft Spruce. See what is out there and or how much. Follow the installation instructions. I have deviated by putting the ELT and antenna both in the baggage compartment. The antenna can transmit through plexi... it is a compromise. Nothing stopping you from having a PLB on your person in addition as well as an ELT. The ELT has "G" switch and is designed to come on when there is an impact. PLB does not.

Some ELT's have GPS interface so you can send your GPS's LAT LONG position through ELT. Other ELT's have GPS built in, and others don't have GPS (so accuracy will be less but much better than older ELT accuracy). Battery replacement cost? Form factor, size, shape....

https://www.aircraftspruce.com/menus/av/elts.html
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Last edited by gmcjetpilot : 01-13-2020 at 06:27 PM.
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  #5  
Old 01-13-2020, 08:06 PM
RVDan RVDan is offline
 
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Location: Frederick, MD
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I would definitely recommend a 406 ELT that takes a GPS input to provide lat/Lon to the satellite. It gets the rescuers directly to you. Without the GPS input there is a much larger search radius.
I also carry a PLB in case I need to travel from the wreckage. Also a good backup.
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  #6  
Old 01-14-2020, 06:14 AM
Larry DeCamp's Avatar
Larry DeCamp Larry DeCamp is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Clinton, Indiana
Posts: 904
Default More government wisdom 😒

Thanks for responding guys.
My summary is you are required to spend $500 to $2,000 on a device requiring periodic battery replacement, that only works if you hit something hard enough to activate it and you don't flip over. I think the probability of escaping death from impact and or fire is low, and landing anywhere but a road without flipping is also low.
So my conclusion is buy the cheapest unit, live with the false activations and manage your aircraft so the big fan keeps turning 😊
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  #7  
Old 01-14-2020, 06:52 AM
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N941WR N941WR is offline
 
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Default

Years ago, someone on this forum who is a first responder said that in his experience, if the ELT goes off, the mission switches from a Search and Rescue to Search and Recovery.

That just doesn't sound good.

Wherever you mount your ELT, put it somewhere that you can access it and its portable antenna without tools. This is much easier to do when building than retrofitting.
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  #8  
Old 01-14-2020, 07:05 AM
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Walt Walt is online now
 
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Based on everything I've seen and heard, along with some personal experience with faulty ELT's, I switched to Kannad and haven't looked back.
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  #9  
Old 01-14-2020, 08:06 AM
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fl-mike fl-mike is offline
 
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Although it is not discussed officially, the general consensus at COSPAS-SARSAT is that if the antenna and cable are intact and connected to the ELT after the crash and the ELT activates, they will pick it up.
When NASA did the gantry crash tests with the old 172s recently, the antenna that was in the dirt after the 172 flipped was picked up by the satellites.
So, design your installation to give the coax and antenna the best chance of survival, i.e. leave slack so the connectors don't rip out, and consider how the structure might deform, shear, or breakup. The new installation guidelines also recommend fire-sleeve for the coax, so there is a better chance of getting out a few messages before fire consumes the cable/antenna.

And carry a PLB....
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  #10  
Old 01-14-2020, 09:28 AM
Ralph Inkster Ralph Inkster is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
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Default

I agree. Back in Feb 1, 2009 when Canada first activated the 406 coverage, a buddy & I were busy installing one and accidentally activated it. Wasn't too long before we got a call asking if everything was OK. We were the very first GA aircraft activation so they were keenly interested with their signal location accuracy (before GPS interconnect) as it was about 600ft radius of our location, they expected 60ft radius accuracy for the 406. When I explained we were inside a full metal hangar with doors shut, they felt much better.
The 406 antenna (thick portion at the base) is much more likely to survive even if the 121.5 (long whip portion) is mangled.
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