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CHAPTER 5 general airworthiness and avionics technical functions

Section 3 Certificate Amateur-Built Aircraft Requiring Commercial Assistance

8-361    PURPOSE. This section provides information and guidance to aviation safety inspectors (ASI) who issue experimental airworthiness certificates for amateur‑built aircraft that are built with commercial assistance (can only be built at a commercial assistance center or can only be built with commercial assistance).

8-362    BACKGROUND.

A.    The Aircraft Certification Service (AIR) is concerned with amateur‑built aircraft that can only be fabricated and assembled with commercial assistance. These aircraft are marketed and sold as eligible for amateur‑built aircraft certification. However, they may not meet the requirement of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 21 , § 21.191(g) that the “major portion” (more than 50 percent) was fabricated and assembled by an individual or group of individuals.

B.    A review of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Order 8130.2 , Airworthiness Certification of Aircraft and Related Products, and aircraft certification records reveals several areas for improvement in the amateur‑built airworthiness process. Aircraft Certification Service’s Production and Airworthiness Division (AIR‑200) is working with both FAA field personnel and the experimental Aircraft Association to develop the appropriate changes.

8-363    DISCUSSION. Until FAA Order 8130.2 is revised, AIR is taking the following interim steps:

A.    Directorates will identify, and report to AIR‑200, all commercial assistance centers in their geographic area.

B.    Directorates will issue a letter to all known manufacturers of aircraft kits that require commercial assistance to fabricate and assemble. A copy of the letter will be sent to AIR‑200.

C.    All requests from manufacturers for an evaluation of an aircraft kit requiring commercial assistance to fabricate and build must be coordinated with AIR‑200. The Manufacturing Inspection District Office (MIDO) must review the results of their evaluation with AIR‑200 before the evaluation can be finalized.

D.    MIDOs will coordinate with AIR‑200 regarding all applications for certification of amateur‑built aircraft that require fabrication and assembly with commercial assistance. AIR‑200 will assist the field office in determining the appropriate course of action. FAA designees will not be utilized for certification of these aircraft projects.

8-364    ACTION. The Flight Standards Service ASI must take the following actions:

A.    Applications for an experimental airworthiness certificate for the purpose of operating amateur‑built aircraft requiring commercial assistance to build must be coordinated with Rodney Watson in the Airworthiness Certification Branch, AIR‑230, at (202) 267‑9540. This must be done before performing a conformity inspection on these aircraft.

B.    Until further notice, ASIs are the only individuals authorized to perform these certifications. ASIs must contact their assigned Designated Airworthiness Representatives (DAR) with Function Code 46 to inform them of this policy.

RESERVED. Paragraphs 8‑365 through 8‑379.