Avionics Upgrade

Future avionics upgrade for 7311S

We have known that we wanted to upgrade the panel in 7311S ever since we purchased it. After having an Aspen in 199TX, we admit we got spoiled by the display and situational awareness. It would be like removing our GPS and going back to only VOR navigation and pilotage; who wants to do that? So some kind of upgrade is clearly in our future.

We are also in a time of transition. The FAA has become open to new technologies and streamlining the approval process not only for new equipment, but also for options previously available only to those in the experimental world. Almost every month, there is a press release from an avionics company about their newest and greatest product. And of course, with the ADS-B deadline approaching, we have to make at least that decision; we can’t get away with not flying in controlled airspace.

So the Trustees have been studying and discussing potential options since May of 2017. Several times, we have updated the members as to the progress of those discussions.

This page will hopefully give you the most up-to-date information and thoughts about what avionics upgrades we might choose. 

 

“What if we went with a basic upgrade?” Update September 21, 2018

What if instead of ripping everything out to go full glass, we decided just to do a few upgrades, replacing just a few of the old instruments to get us a partial glass panel?

Well, we would probably consider the following:

  • a 2-instrument sided EFIS (Aspen or Garmin G5).
  • Autopilot
  • ADS-B 2020 Compliance

We would relocate the required standby instruments (artificial horizon, altimeter and airspeed indicator).

Here are our options and estimated costs for this basic upgrade scenario:

Garmin G5 Combination

To achieve equal capability, we would install a Garmin G5 Primary EFIS as well as a HSI module. These units would go directly above the yoke.

We would need an autopilot that interfaces with the Garmin, and that is the newly certified Garmin GFC 500.

We would upgrade our transponder to be ADS-B out compliant. 

Fortunately, everything in this option is certified and ready to be installed at any avionics shop we choose.

Estimated Cost (installed): $21,119

 

 

 

 

 

Aspen Evolution PFD Pro 1000

We are very familiar with the Aspen; we installed one in 9TX. It is an affordable glass option that incorporates primary flight instruments along with an HSI and course overlays from the GPS, and fits in 2 standard 3.5″ holes above the yoke. It interfaces with our Garmin 430W. 

Because we do not have a working autopilot, we would need one that interfaces with the Aspen. So far, that is the TruTrak PMA Vizion autopilot.

We would have to upgrade our transponder to be ADS-B out compliant. 

Fortunately, everything in this option is certified and ready to be installed at any avionics shop we choose.

Estimated cost (installed): $21,995

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aspen and Garmin G5 Side-by-Side – Update April 22, 2018

Here is a picture of an Aspen and a Garmin G5 stack side-by-side. This helps get an idea of the display size for these different pieces of equipment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Full Options – Update April 12, 2018

 

Dynon Skyview HDX

Coming from years of successful installations in experiment aircraft, Dynon has been working toward getting Skyview HDX approved in certified aircraft. It is a 10” touchscreen that has the capability of showing primary flight instruments, maps, engine monitoring, autopilot, Comm, transponder, flight plans, and checklists. When installed with the Dynon EFIS DA-10 as backup, all vacuum gauges (and the vacuum system itself) can be completely removed.

For a fully integrated system, we would install Dynon’s Autopilot, Transponder/ADS-B out, Engine Monitor, and VHF Comm Radio (see below what our panel might look like).

Unfortunately, Skyview is not yet approved for our airplane. On March 14, 2018, approval in certain Cessna 172s was announced. There has been a news report that 182s could be next. One more item: the closest installation shop would be in Texas! So until certification is announced, any Dynon option is on hold.

Estimated cost (installed): $29,793

 

 

Aspen Evolution PFD Pro 1000

We are very familiar with the Aspen; we installed one in 9TX. It is an affordable glass option that incorporates primary flight instruments along with an HSI and course overlays from the GPS, and fits in 2 standard 3.5″ holes. It interfaces with our Garmin 430W. If we were to match the Dynon option, we could install an Aspen Evolution MFD to the side of the PFD to provide an in-panel map. When installed with an Aspen Evolution E5 as  backup, all vacuum gauges (and the vacuum system itself) can be completely removed.

Because we do not have a working autopilot, we would need one that interfaces with the Aspen. So far, that is the TruTrak PMA Vizion autopilot.

In addition, to match Dynon, we would get an engine monitor, thus eliminating our unreliable engine instruments. One option might be the JPI EDM 830.

We would have to upgrade our transponder to be ADS-B out compliant. 

Fortunately, everything in this option is certified and ready to be installed at any avionics shop we choose.

Estimated cost (installed): $34,990

 

 

 

Garmin G5

Garmin has been working hard to provide an electronic flight information system (EFIS) at a more affordable price. Enter the Garmin G5, which is a single 3.5″ EFIS providing primary flight display. With the additional HSI module, usually installed underneath, it provides flight information for the pilot and interfaces with our Garmin 430W. When installed with an additional G5 (that’s right, three G5s), all vacuum gauges (and the vacuum system itself) c

an be completely removed.

Without a working autopilot, we would need one that interfaces with the Garmin, and that is the newly certified Garmin GFC 500.

Once again, to match Dynon, we would get an engine monitor, thus eliminating our unreliable engine instruments. Keeping with the other options means installing the JPI EDM 830.

We would have to upgrade our transponder to be ADS-B out compliant. 

Fortunately, everything in this option is certified and ready to be installed at any avionics shop we choose.

Estimated cost (installed): $28,768

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gamin TXi 500

Garmin’s experimental TXi 500 has arrived in the certified world. This 10.6″ touchscreen display compares to the Dynon Skyview HDX, without as many buttons. When installed with an additional Garmin G5, all vacuum gauges (and the vacuum system itself) can be completely removed.

As far as the autopilot goes, the Garmin GFC 500 interfaces with the TXi 500.

Once again, to match Dynon, we would get an engine monitor. There is some confusion whether the TXi 500 has the capability to add Engine Information System (EIS), so we are using the JPI EDM 830 numbers until we know more.

We would have to upgrade our transponder to be ADS-B out compliant. 

Everything in this option is certified and ready to be installed at any avionics shop we choose.

Estimated cost (installed): $39,644

 

No decision has been made. The Trustees will keep the members informed.