What is a "test flight"

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cage
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What is a "test flight"

Unread post by cage » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:04 am

Ok, we all know what a test flight is, but when is it legally considered one.
The regs state the following, requiring a post-maintenance test pilot rating:
Requirement for test flight
61.19.2 A test flight shall be carried out—
(a) prior to the initial issuing of a certificate of airworthiness;
(b) for the validation or rendering effective of a certificate of airworthiness;
(c) after maintenance, adjustments or repair to an aircraft which is or likely to affect the flying characteristics of the aircraft and as stipulated in the maintenance manual; or
(d) when prescribed by the Director.
So is an oil change a test flight? where would the line be drawn?
Where would tracking and balancing fit in?

To make things a bit more murky:
Circumstances not requiring a test pilot rating
61.19.6 In the event that there are circumstances which cannot be categorised as test flight that would require the pilot to hold a test pilot rating, the pilot must be rated as PIC within the category of aircraft, on the type or within the class of aircraft for the test flights as defined.
Circumstances requiring a test pilot rating
61.19.7 The circumstances that would require the pilot to hold a test pilot rating for the PIC include a test flight, maintenance test flight, import test flight and an experimental or a prototype test flight.
The wording is all quite vague and broad and potentially open for interpretation.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Arch » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:26 pm

Post-maintenance flight systems and acceptance tests (class 2) are quite different from test flying (class 1). Unfortunately the regulator's use of English creates the opportunity for confusion, and enables common garden-variety flight-test-accredited pilots to think of themselves as test pilots
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by hugo_visser » Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:41 am

So do you get an endorsement for a class 2 post maintenance test pilot and what are the requirements please ?

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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by cage » Fri Sep 28, 2018 7:44 am

Arch wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:26 pm
Post-maintenance flight systems and acceptance tests (class 2) are quite different from test flying (class 1). Unfortunately the regulator's use of English creates the opportunity for confusion, and enables common garden-variety flight-test-accredited pilots to think of themselves as test pilots
Thanks Arch.
In the good old days anyone holding a commercial license could (to a degree) sign out an aircraft after minor maintenance.
Where are the boundaries?
Under current regs does anything post-maintenance (even an oil change) require a class 2 rating?
Would that also include performing tracking and balancing?
Is it pretty much just compass swings that don't require an additional rating?
This follows a chat with friends where there is a perception about what can/can't be done and when you check the rules it all gets quite grey.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Iceberg » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:33 am

I know this is the rotor wing section, but I believe the same applies for FW.

61.19.2 A (c) describes after maintenance test flights as one where the flying characteristics of the aircraft could be affected e.g after fitting a vortex generator kit etc. An oil change/standard MPI does not fall under this as I read it.

I have always done the post MPI test flights on my AC and signed off on them - has never been a problem. I do hold a CPL - don't know if that makes a difference.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Arch » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:51 am

cage wrote:
Fri Sep 28, 2018 7:44 am
Arch wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:26 pm
Post-maintenance flight systems and acceptance tests (class 2) are quite different from test flying (class 1). Unfortunately the regulator's use of English creates the opportunity for confusion, and enables common garden-variety flight-test-accredited pilots to think of themselves as test pilots
Thanks Arch.
In the good old days anyone holding a commercial license could (to a degree) sign out an aircraft after minor maintenance.
Where are the boundaries?
Under current regs does anything post-maintenance (even an oil change) require a class 2 rating?
Would that also include performing tracking and balancing?
Is it pretty much just compass swings that don't require an additional rating?
This follows a chat with friends where there is a perception about what can/can't be done and when you check the rules it all gets quite grey.
Your AMO will require a flight test to be carried out after certain maintenance procedures or major component changes / overhauls. The AMO system determines when a flight test is required, and there is a flight test acceptance form provided by the AMO that the test pilot is required to sign off, and which will be filed with the work pack. It's an AMO function, not a pilot function
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by cage » Fri Sep 28, 2018 9:03 am

Arch wrote:
Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:51 am
cage wrote:
Fri Sep 28, 2018 7:44 am
Arch wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:26 pm
Post-maintenance flight systems and acceptance tests (class 2) are quite different from test flying (class 1). Unfortunately the regulator's use of English creates the opportunity for confusion, and enables common garden-variety flight-test-accredited pilots to think of themselves as test pilots
Thanks Arch.
In the good old days anyone holding a commercial license could (to a degree) sign out an aircraft after minor maintenance.
Where are the boundaries?
Under current regs does anything post-maintenance (even an oil change) require a class 2 rating?
Would that also include performing tracking and balancing?
Is it pretty much just compass swings that don't require an additional rating?
This follows a chat with friends where there is a perception about what can/can't be done and when you check the rules it all gets quite grey.
Your AMO will require a flight test to be carried out after certain maintenance procedures or major component changes / overhauls. The AMO system determines when a flight test is required, and there is a flight test acceptance form provided by the AMO that the test pilot is required to sign off, and which will be filed with the work pack. It's an AMO function, not a pilot function
Indeed, except the regulator seems to be trying to define when it is required which seems at odds with an amo.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Whirly » Fri Sep 28, 2018 9:45 am

Arch wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:26 pm
Post-maintenance flight systems and acceptance tests (class 2) are quite different from test flying (class 1). Unfortunately the regulator's use of English creates the opportunity for confusion, and enables common garden-variety flight-test-accredited pilots to think of themselves as test pilots
I hold a class 2 and those are the only type of test flights that I do. I leave the rest for the class 1 boffins. :D

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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Chopperanskie » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:30 pm

I would like to find out about doing a class 1 test pilot rating. Can anyone point me in the right direction please.
Who does this and how long does it take ?
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by hugo_visser » Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:03 am

Would also like to know and requirements.

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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by Rotor Mad » Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:31 am

As far as I know you will have to do a course at a Test Flight Academy as
run by Petri van Zyl
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by cage » Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:41 am

Rotor Mad wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:31 am
As far as I know you will have to do a course at a Test Flight Academy as
run by Petri van Zyl
CATS define no syllabus or requirements for this.
Only the CARS state:
Requirements for issue of rating
61.19.1 (1) An applicant for a Class II test pilot rating shall—

(a) be the holder of a valid PPL or higher grade licence;
(b) have completed not less than 500 hours’ flight time of which not less that 300 hours were as PIC;
(Editorial Note: Wording as per original Government Gazette. It is suggested that the phrase “not less that” is intended to be “not less than”.)
(c) be the holder of the appropriate aircraft category rating;
(d) be the holder of the appropriate aircraft class rating; and
(e) satisfy the Director that he has adequate knowledge of test flying techniques.

(2) An applicant for a Class I test pilot rating shall
(a) be the holder of a valid PPL or higher grade licence;
(b) have completed not less than 1000 hours’ flight time of which not less that 700 hours were as PIC;
(c) be the holder of the appropriate aircraft category rating;
(d) be the holder of the appropriate aircraft class rating; and
(e) satisfy the Director that he has successfully completed a recognised test pilot course.
The form seems to be:
http://www.caa.co.za/Part%2061%20Licens ... 1-01.0.pdf

But there is no associated checklist that I could find.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by hugo_visser » Fri Oct 12, 2018 12:03 pm

TKS Cage.
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Re: What is a "test flight"

Unread post by moosp » Sun Oct 28, 2018 11:43 am

Just picked up on this thread with interest.

There is that wonderfully wooly phrase in 61.19.1 (1) ref the Class 2 rating, "satisfy the Director that he has adequate knowledge of test flying techniques"

It seems that under Subpart 19: Post Maintenance Test Flight Rating, all a Class 2 holder can do is just post maintenance flying.

Does anyone have any recent experience as to how one might "satisfy the Director that he has adequate knowledge of test flying techniques" ? It specifically excudes a test pilots course requirement, which is required for a Class 1.

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