Q&A FAA Special Review Team Report - Zodiac 601XL/650 - FAA clarification letter

This Q&A is about the FAA's clarification letter of March 8th, 2010.

Like previous Q&A's, post all your questions / concerns at the bottom of the last
page of this Q&A.  If I do not have the answer, I will consult with
Chris Heintz and or other engineers.
If you have a very technical question or just want to vent, call me at 705-526-2871 or email me at newplane@gmail.com

Thank you for your continued support.
Mathieu Heintz
Zenair Ltd

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Replies to This Discussion

I believe there was some discussion about inviting the FAA and the NTSB to a Zenith forum at Sun 'N Fun. Have they responded positively to this request?
Jim,
I will follow up on this.
To all,
The FAA has confirmed that they will be present at the Zodiac forum at SNF. However, they will be at the back of the tent and will be available for questions after the forum only.
To all,
I am back at Zenair from Sun-n-Fun aircraft show in Florida. It was a good show and interest in the Zodiac 650 is starting to regain some strength. We added the B designation behind the 650 so now its the Zodiac 650B or 601XLB. Zenith will be sending out decals of all this in the very near future, once customers confirm that they have completed the upgrade.
I talked to at least 30 Zodiac builders who are in the process of doing the upgrade or already flying with it. Everyone was positive so I think we are on the right track to recovery. Our Zodiac forum was a success with good feedback and again very positive. The FAA attended forum and was available to all after.
AMD sent out a letter to the FAA confirming that flight testing of the Zodiac with the upgrade was done as per the ASTM LSA rule. However, I would still like to complete a more detailed flight test as previously discussed.

Thanks again to everyone for your continued support.
Hi Mathieu

I and fellow builders would like to thank you and the Zenith Team for your support and guidence over the last 6 mths.
In Australia we now have 4 x 601 XL that are fully fitted with the Mod Kits and flying. There are a further 28 Mod kits being fitted to 601's in various stages of constrution.
Thanks and cheers from down under

Allan
Zenair Australia
Allan,
Thanks very much for the support and am really glad that all of you are finally starting to enjoy your aircraft again.
FYI

One of the AMD dealers out West just sold a used SLSA (factory built) 650 for just under $80K. Before the upgrade, nobody would have touched the aircraft so this is excellent news. My understanding is that the proud new owner was well aware of all the past issues and bought the aircraft after seeing one being upgraded in a shop.
FYI
Here is the State Government's Coroners investigation report into the Zodiac XL that went down in 2008.
Attachments:
Has anyone been able to open this file? It is not allowing me access????
Greg,

I had no problem opening and reading.

Steve

P.S. Mathieu, thanks for posting it.
This is the Coroners report not the RAA Crash report. it has errors in it.
The pilot had a heart attack.
Oshkosh update - Zodiac XL &650.
We had another excellent forum at the show. About 150 attended and even a few FAA guys were present. It was excellent to hear from owners who are now really enjoying their aircraft after the upgrade. Congratulations to all of you.

Please remember that once you are finished with the upgrade, inspect the aircraft with the detailed inspection list (+60 pages) and get someone with aircraft airframe maintenance experience to assist. A second set of eyes is very important when doing the work yourself. Also remember to plan your flights as you start flying again. Fuel, weather, speed, distance etc.

From the response that we are now getting from owners who are flying and did the upgrade, the Zodiac is truly an excellent design. Together, we can rebuild the reputation of the aircraft.

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