Saturday, February 05, 2005

Sport Pilot Repairman Certification Guide

Sport Pilot Certification of Repairmen Guide

What is this document?
This Guide is written for those who are transitioning their two seat Ultralight trainers and single seat ultralight like aircraft and wish to obtain a Repairman's Certificate. In this document I will outline the steps required to obtain the Repairman's Certificate for your Experimental Amateur-Built Aircraft or Experimental Light Sport Aircraft. The document will tell you how to apply for the certificates and will list the study areas, and give you links to the study aids, necessary for the 16 hour Repairmen's course with an Inspection rating, for Experimental Light Sport Aircraft owners.

Master Document List
Before I go any further, here is a master list of documents to study and or download and locations for information needed for this Guide

Applicable Regulations

14 CFR Part 1 Definitions and Abbreviations
14 CFR Part 21 Certification Procedures for Products and Parts
14 CFR Part 43 Maintenance, Preventative Maintenance, Rebuilding and Alteration Appendix D
14 CFR Part 45 Identification and Registration Marking
14 CFR Part 65 Certification: Airmen Other than Flight Crewmembers
14 CFR Part 91 General Operating and Flight Rules

AC20-27F Certification and Operation of Amateur-Built Aircraft
AC20-88A Guidelines on the Marking of Aircraft Powerplant Instruments (Displays)
AC39-7C Airworthiness Directives
AC43.13-1B CHG1 Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices-Aircraft Inspection and Repair
AC43.13-2A Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices-Aircraft Alterations
AC43-9C Maintenance Records
AC45-2B Identification and Registration Marking
AC45-3 Installation, Removal, or Change of Identification Data and Identification Plates on Aircraft
AC65-23A Certification of Repairmen (Experimental Aircraft Builders)
AC90-89A Amateur-Built Aircraft and Ultralight Flight Testing Handbook
AC103-7 The Ultralight Vehicle

FAA Forms
FAA Form 8610-2 Airmen Certificate or Rating Application Instructions for 8610-2

FAA Handbooks and Orders
8300.10 Airworthiness Inspector's Handbook
8130F-2F Airworthiness Certification of Aircraft and Related Products
8000.84 Procedures to Accept Industry-Developed Training for Light-Sport Repairmen

FSDO (Flight Standards District Office)
A lot of help and information is available from the Flight Standards District Office within your area. Mine sent me a whole packet of forms, checklists, and manuals to help me through the registration and inspection process. They are also helpful when you have questions, especially about FAA documents and procedures.
Also check with the FAA Manufacturing Inspection District Office (MIDO) or Manufacturing Inspection Satellite Office (MISO) nearest your location.
For a list of FSDO's in your area please go to:

FSDO Index

Repairman's Certification
Repairman's Certification for Amateur Built
Repairman's Certification for Experimental Light Sport (With an Inspection Rating)

Owners of Experimental aircraft have an advantage in that you may qualify for the Repairman's Certificate for the aircraft you build (Experimental Amateur-Built) or own (Experimental Light Sport). This certificate allows you to do your own annual inspection.
For Amateur-Built, the Repairman's Certificate allows the holder to do the annual for that specific aircraft for which he was the primary builder. There is no training course.
For Experimental Light Sport, the holder of the certificate can inspect aircraft in the same class of Experimental Light Sport Aircraft as the class of Light Sport Aircraft for which he has taken a training course, and which he owns. The training course is 16 hours.

Note: The only Repairman's Certification for Light Sport Aircraft that I am going to cover in this document is the Repairman's Certificate with an Inspection rating. I may go over the Repairman's Certificate with a Maintenance rating in a future guide.

Your aircraft's approved airworthiness inspection serves as the only inspection you need for the first year (or the first 100 hours if you use the aircraft for flight training, (but then it must be inspected by a repairman with a maintenance rating), so you will need to have your Repairman's Certification in time to inspect your aircraft when this date occurs. As you can see, there is less urgency to get this finished then there is for certifying the pilot and aircraft.

Repairman's Certification for Amateur Built
You qualify for the Amateur Built Repairman's Certificate by the process of building the aircraft. No class is required. The aircraft may be built by multiple builders but you must be the primary builder. The certificate is issued for a particular aircraft and is not transferable. The following AC contains details about the Repairmen's Certificate for Amateur Built:

AC65-23A Certification of Repairman (Experimental Aircraft Builders)

The repairman's certificate for the Amateur Built aircraft is applied for by submitting FAA form 8610-2 Airmen Certificate or Rating Application.

8610-2 Airmen Certificate or Rating Application Instructions for 8610-2

Repairman's Certification for Experimental Light Sport
The owner of an Experimental Light Sport Aircraft may apply for a repairman's Certificate upon taking and successfully completing a 16 hour course. If you have different categories of aircraft, you need to take a course that covers each category you wish to have listed on your certificate. These courses will be given by various entities. Links to some of the possible sponsors are listed here:

Aero Sports Connection (ASC)
United States Ultralight Association (USUA)
Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA)

Update 7 Jan 2006
A number of organizations and businesses are now offering courses for a person who wants to qualify for a Repairman's Certificate with an Inspection rating. These include courses for Fixed-Wing, Weight-Shift Control and Powered Parachute categories. A number of these courses have already been completed and applicants graduated. Here is the link to the FAA list:

Rainbow Aviation is in the process of writing and getting approval for parts of some of the Repairman with a Maintenance rating, courses and modules.

What's in the course?
Here is the FAA's course overview and elements from:
FAA Order 8000.84 Procedures to Accept Industry-Developed Training for Light-Sport Repairmen


The light-sport aircraft rule requires a minimum of 16 hours of training for an inspection rating in each class of ELSA. The goal of the 16-hour course is to take an individual with zero knowledge and train that individual to inspect an ELSA to a level of proficiency comparable to a level 3 in 14 CFR part 147 appendix A. Level 3 requirement means that the repairman can make a decision that an aircraft is in a condition for safe operation without additional technical assistance. To ensure a level 3 standard of training, the 16-hour course will be limited to 16 students per instructor for lecture and 8 students per practical project.
The Repairman (Light-Sport Aircraft) with Inspection Rating Course.
This course will contain at least six elements:
(1) Regulations and other guidance applicable to light-sport aircraft, review of operating limitations, annual condition inspection record entry, a review of FAA Airworthiness Directives (AD) and manufacturer’s safety directives.

Regulations and Guidance for Light Sport Aircraft
Light Sport Aircraft regulations

Operating Limitations
8130F-2F Airworthiness Certification of Aircraft and Related Products
FAA Airworthiness Directives (AD's)
Manufacturer's Safety Directives

(2) Inspection procedures in Advisory Circular (AC) 43.13-1B, Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices, Aircraft Inspection and Repair, and use of manufacturer’s manuals, technical data, and personal safety in the work environment.
AC43.13-1B CHG1 Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices-Aircraft Inspection and Repair
(3) Aircraft theory of flight and discussion of aircraft systems, to include proper operation and critical areas that are prone to failure or fatigue for at least the following systems:
(a) Airframe, including instrumentation, landing gear, brakes, etc;
(b) Engine, including fuel and oil systems;
(c) Propeller and gear reduction unit;
(d) Accessories, including ballistic parachute; and
(e) Flight control operation and rigging.
(4) Use of an inspection checklist provided by the manufacturer or found in FAA
AC 90-89A Amateur-Built Aircraft and Ultralight Flight Testing Handbook, appendix A.
AC90-89A Amateur-Built Aircraft and Ultralight Flight Testing Handbook
(5) Student course evaluation (critique). (See form Appendix 1 in FAA Order 8000.84}
(6) A required final test that will contain no less than 50 questions with multiple-choice answers.
NOTE: Applicant must achieve an 80 percent score or higher on the final test to pass the course. If the applicant fails, the course must be retaken in its entirety.

Note: The course will be 75 percent lecture and 25 percent practical (hands-on) training. The instructor should have one airframe, of the category for which the class is given, for each 8 student practical group.

FAA Airworthiness Directives
Here is the FAA database of Airworthiness Directives (AD's):

FAA Airworthiness Directives (AD's)

Other Links and Websites
Airworthy.Org (Additional information on AD's)

AC 43.13 is the common shorthand for the FAA's Advisory Circular 43.13: "Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices - Aircraft Inspection and Repair." This advisory circular is the official bible on how to inspect, modify, or fix aircraft of almost every construction type. It is also commonly used as a reference guide in the detail design of new aircraft.
As amateur builders of experimental aircraft, we are not legally obligated to comply with all the directives of AC 43.13. However, we are definitely obligated to take all reasonable precautions to ensure that our aircraft do not present a danger to either ourselves or to others. The easiest way to meet this obligation is to follow the guidelines of AC 43.13 wherever practical, and to rely upon engineered and tested practices in all other cases.

Operating Limitations
When the DAR or FAA inspector gives you your Airworthiness Certificate he will also specify Operating Limitations for your aircraft. Part of these will be requirements to fly a Phase one program of flight testing. In some cases there will be credit given for flight time logged as a registered Ultralight aircraft with one of the UL organizations. In any case, it is a good idea, after doing the kind of repairs and equipment installations that many of us will be doing, to flight test the completed aircraft. AC90-89A Amateur-Built Aircraft and Ultralight Flight Testing Handbook will help you develop a safe flight testing plan. It is here:

AC90-89A Amateur-Built Aircraft and Ultralight Flight Testing Handbook

General Sources for Documents and Forms

FAA AC's (Advisory Circulars)
All the AC's (Advisory Circulars) listed in this document, and more, are available at the following FAA site:

FAA AC (Advisory Circular) List (The main link)

NOTE: AC 00-2, Advisory Circular Checklist, transmits the status of all FAA advisory circulars (AC's),as well as FAA internal publications and miscellaneous flight information such as Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), Airport/Facility Directory, knowledge test study guides, and other material directly related to a certificate or rating. The checklist is available on the Internet at:

AC 00-2, Advisory Circular Checklist

FAA Forms
Go here for FAA forms and instructions:

FAA Forms and Instructions

Most or all of the publications listed in this document may be available as downloadable files from the FAA website. Some of the files are large and require a fast connection to the internet.

Printed Materials
Check with the Superintendent of Documents (Government Printing Office) for printed versions of some or all of the above publications.
Call your local FSDO for more info including publications and videos they may sell or loan.

Here is a link to the other site with guides for the knowledge and practical tests:

SP Training Blog