Q&A - Zodiac 601XL -650 for the latest upgrade drawings of November 24 2009

This Q&A is for the upgrade kit of the Zodiac 601XL & 650 based on drawings of Nov. 24, 2009 and AMD Safety Alert of November 7. 2009

New drawings:
Nov. 24, 2009: We've updated the draft Drawings 6-ZU-1, 6-ZU-2, 6-ZU-3 and 6-ZU-4, and LAA Aileron Balance.

For very detailed questions (or if you must complain or vent), email me at newplane@gmail.com

Please post all your questions on the last page.

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For all Zenith Aircraft customers, please go through Zenith. For all others, you can go through Zenair. Call Anita at Zenair at 705-526-2871 to place the order.

The European upgrade is in 3 parts, Zenair Europe has its own upgrade which can be viewed at http://www.zenairulm.com/News/pdfdocs/ZE-2009-07.pdf
ULM Technologie in France is supplying the upgrade kits for Europe.
Thanks Ken and Mathieu! I ordered the upgrade using the link on Ken's post.
I believe that Zenith wants to finish the installation of the upgrade before sending the parts. This will be done next week. AMD has already started shipping the upgrade kits to A&P shops, with some back-ordered items.
What is the purpose of the new 6-ZU-3-5 Upright Doubler? is it for strength or to cover holes? it looks really unattractive and an eyesore doubler patch . Can I replace my entire .025 fwd side skins and do away with the doubler? or can I replace them with thicker side skins and do away with the upright doubler?

And if I go back to the new skins can I just use the extrusion for the front wing uprights rather than the bent .125 T6 .
I guess this is a Q that a lot of people are now asking as this upright doubler and new front doubler are a bit of a shock.
Doubler 6-ZU-3-5 has a few purposes.
It is for strength / looks to cover up the skin holes from the old front spar upright, it replaces the top spar upright gussets (from the previous draft drawing), and it is a way to identify that the upgrade has been completed.
If you want to replace the complete front side skins with a 0.025 skin, that is fine but you will need the upright gussets (from the previous draft drawing), that are riveted to the front and rear spar uprights and to the cabin side extrusion.
Yes, you can use the 0.125" extrusion instead of front spar upright 6-ZU-2-6.

In a previous Q&A, I said that you can use make the front spar uprights from the 1"x1 1/2"x0.125 extrusion. That has not changed and can be a good consideration for scratch builders. Just remember to add the upright gussets (from the previous draft drawing).
I am asking the same question ,I really dont like the look of this patch on the outside ,It must be because the existing holes in the front sideskin at the root "slot" will end up in the bend radius of the new 0.125" front upright
as the spar is now thicker ,otherwise you would fit the strengthening patch on the inside .
The mods thus far are great and will add a LOT of strength to the airframe ,however I feel it is very important that the parts are as discreet as possible ,when /if I ever sell my aircraft I think the PATCH over the side will put folk off .
I have already reset my wing to the euroxl /650 angle ,so to "avoid a patch "I remade the sideskins to allow for the 2 degree tilt back, looks like I will have to make yet another set of skins! :0( .
sorry for being a perfectionist .
Yes, you are correct that the existing holes in the front sideskin at the root "slot" will end up in the bend radius of the new 0.125" front upright. We are moving the front center spar 0.125" forward because of the wing root doubler 6-ZU-1-2.
Once painted, I do not think that the patch will be noticeable unless you know it was added later.
Yes, you can redue the side skin. Another option is to make 6-ZU-2-6 out of the 1"x1 1/2"x0.125" extrusion and with a bit of luck, you can use your existing holes in the side skins. The extrusion has a tight radius.
Hi Chris. I believe 6ZU3-5 is an internal doubler and sits inside the side skins. But I think there is an external doubler planned to go over 6ZU2-6. That won't be attractive. Re-making the side skin is major work though.
6ZU3-5 is on the outside as to cover up the old holes of the spar upright.
6ZU3-5 is the external doubler I am talking about, and as I see it yes I agree its not very attractive. your Dad must be sad to see his dream with patches on it, can you ask him if there are alternatives?? and if we reskin the fwd sides what size metal?
I for one,am well pleased with the efforts of zenith to upgrade. I have opened everything and am just waiting for the parts.
I do hope you will enclude the vidio or at least the pictures with the parts. thay have been a great help in visualize what
must be done. before ,I have been a bit uneasy when the air is rough,usually I fly between 110mph and 120mph,but now
I will be more comfortable with the new strength in the airplane.The time and money are well spent..
paul baker....61 years of flying and loving every minute
Yes, a big part of the upgrade is to make everyone more comfortable flying the aircraft. From comments that we have been receiving over the last year, almost everyone wanted us to do something significant and this is what we have done.
The NTSB, FAA, CAA's and others have spent significant resources trying to find the root cause of the accidents. We believe that this upgrade is addressing all major concerns and more.


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