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  1. #1
    Captain Randombloke's Avatar
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    CAA Consultation: 600 kg for microlights?

    Consultation: Opting out of EASA regulation for 450-600 kg light aircraft


    We have opened a 6-week long consultation to seek views on the UK moving new designs of light aircraft 450-600 kg from pan-European EASA certification to national regulations.


    Stakeholders are invited to submit their views and respond to questions set out in the consultation document online:

    https://consultations.caa.co.uk/ga/4...kg-regulation/


    The closing date is 29 November 2019.


    18/10/2019
    Steve U.
    PG, HG & microlights
    "Weekend bimbler, day to day car driver & genuinely undeserving Southern oik who has never done anything of any worth"


  2. #2
    Trainee Pilot Asgard's Avatar
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    I'm confused by the title of this thread, this is surely a different matter to that of raising the microlight weight limit or am I missing something?

    BTW re: the push to raise the microlight weight limit to 600kg, Im dead against it, if you want a light aircraft get an SSEA rating or a different licence and leave microlights as a distinct class.
    600kg is not in the spirit of microlight flying and pushing the weight limit will certainly lead to more onerous regulations and higher costs for all microlights

    Edit reading just the first page I am even more confused, it says only light aircraft up to 450kg are currently non EASA, this is completely untrue, I've been parked next to an 800kg non easa light aircraft for 5 years

    who the feck drafted this?

    edit number 2, ok i've read further, its just a case of crap terminology being used in the first part of the paper, it is about microlights, you could teach monkeys to write clearer stuff than the CAA
    Response submitted
    Last edited by Asgard; 19-10-19 at 14:59 PM.

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  4. #3
    Trainee Pilot tomshep's Avatar
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    Not so sure I agree with you, Asgard. The value of 390 and 450KG machines will decrease aas people want 600s. The C42 with a pair of portly pob will be able to carry full fuel legally and therefore be able to fly further. Who determines where the line is drawn? you? Me? The limit has been raised over the years as both the machines have become more useful and the pilots have wanted more. Can you really tell me that it takes more skill to fly a Eurofox from the factory at 560Kg than it does to fly a homebuilt one at 450?
    Besides, I reckon that our low inertia aircraft need a greater level of flying skill than the average spamcan. Look at the relative performances of a 390Kg Rans and a Cub. One needs a PPl, the other doesn't. It isn't a digital playing field and there are a lot of analogues involved. I think that there should be three licences:
    Microlight to 600KG, LAPL to two tons and PPL beyond that. We have gratefully moved on from the 503 to competent 100 horsepower engined aircraft that people want to fly and can afford to do so which they can't with a forty year old 150 - and why not? If my skills are good enough to fly a 600Kg machine then why shouldn't that be available.
    There is no logical reason to suspect that the lower weight aircraft could be subjected to a more rigorous regime because the CAA would like to delegate the LSA responsibility to the existing amateur bodies and they shouldn't want to make life harder for their members.
    Underpaid but overhead.


  5. #4
    Trainee Pilot Asgard's Avatar
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    Can you really tell me that it takes more skill to fly a Eurofox from the factory at 560Kg than it does to fly a homebuilt one at 450?
    It's got nothing to do with piloting Skill?, the extra regulation I expect would come with the 600kg limit is entirely due to increased potential for danger to third parties on the ground, the exact opposite of how SSDR is deregulated because of low inerti and hence lower risk

    You want a heavier aircraft fine they already exist, they dont conveniently transform themselves into low inertia microlights just because someone re-writes the definition.


  6. #5
    Trainee Pilot tomshep's Avatar
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    And how many of them actually do hurt people on the ground? Really? As many as that? Goodness, we must ban them. Hazard needs to be balanced against risk assessment (in this day and age. Orville and Wilbur would have been incarcerated for their own safety.)
    Any sensible risk assessment would place the odds against getting landed on as very long.
    Potential risks come down the birth canal with you. Being born is inevitably fatal. It isn't a good reason for insisting on a different class of pilot licencing for a heavier aircraft.
    An SSEA rating doesn't reduce the risk so by your argument, we should go back to the underpowered 390 Kg aircraft which although they were possessed of lower inertia, were more likely to sieze up or fail to climb steeply enough to clear obstacles. Weight is a component in glide performance, as well. Now I'm sure that somebody can explain to fourteen decimal places that raising the limit to 600Kg will, in the event of a crash liberate sufficient energy to knock the planet off it's axis, causing it to spiral into our nearest star but I still question the likelihood of it.
    I'm more likely to kill somebody in my car (32Cwt unladen and much more solid than an aircraft,) but they still let me drive one of those with 120MPH closing speeds at separations of inches amongst less experienced and able conductors.
    Last edited by tomshep; 19-10-19 at 17:38 PM. Reason: spelling
    Underpaid but overhead.


  7. #6
    Co-Pilot Martin Watson's Avatar
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    Actually weight is not a component in glide performance. Glide ratio is only dependant on lift and drag. Putting more weight in the same airframe does not degrade it's glide.
    Martin
    BMAA 5370
    Fixed wing instruction, examinations and revalidations in Norfolk.


  8. #7
    Trainee Pilot tomshep's Avatar
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    More weight into a headwind gives more distance.
    Last edited by tomshep; 19-10-19 at 19:52 PM.
    Underpaid but overhead.


  9. #8
    Co-Pilot Martin Watson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomshep View Post
    More weight into a headwind gives more distance.
    Sure, in any individual aircraft penetration into wind is better if it is at maximum weight. That's why gliders carry water ballast.
    But heavier doesn't mean better glide performance. The space shuttle manages 4.5/1 at best. That's pretty poor compared to most light aircraft, and it's a lot heavier..
    Martin
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    Fixed wing instruction, examinations and revalidations in Norfolk.


  10. #9
    Captain Randombloke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asgard View Post
    It's got nothing to do with piloting Skill?, the extra regulation I expect would come with the 600kg limit is entirely due to increased potential for danger to third parties on the ground, the exact opposite of how SSDR is deregulated because of low inerti and hence lower risk
    It doesn't look like the extra 125kg lets loose the four dark horsemen of the apocalypse. The LAA and BMAA are pushing for no extra regulations. We haven't seen a massive step in accidents with Group A versions of microlights, have we?

    Quote Originally Posted by Asgard View Post
    You want a heavier aircraft fine they already exist, they dont conveniently transform themselves into low inertia microlights just because someone re-writes the definition.
    You can have a heavier aircraft, but they must either be amateur built, or EASA CoA. The first precludes some people, the supply second hand may not be great, and the second approach is mega money to buy and maintain.

    If the current lift to 600kg takes place, then factory built microlights with sensible payloads will be on the cards. You might find that the 472.5kg Eurofox and the 560kg one are the same aircraft, or a Skyranger Swift with a stronger nose leg is rated up to a similar weight

    OTOH, the 350m farm strip might be a thing of the past with a 45 knot stall speed.

    However, if there is going to be no additional regulation, why wouldn't you let others fly up to 600kg? Beloved old shitters like the AX3 and X-Air won't be banned, and can be enjoyed by those opposed anything over 450kg.

    Given that we have very few indigenous manufacturers, and they will want to compete in the bigger 600kg market and we will want choice, we won't get that choice with most of Europe moved to 600kg.

    How many 3 axis microlights can legally carry 2 people and a full tank of fuel?
    Steve U.
    PG, HG & microlights
    "Weekend bimbler, day to day car driver & genuinely undeserving Southern oik who has never done anything of any worth"

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  12. #10
    Trainee Pilot tomshep's Avatar
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    Agreed. Then there is the matter of wing loading. A bit more mass and you don't get kicked around by turbulence so much. That gives more comfort and more flyable days, both of which contribute to greater safety.
    Underpaid but overhead.


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