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Thread: Avionics

  1. #1
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    Default Avionics

    Quote Originally Posted by Flybyjim View Post
    I am at a point of deciding what antennas I need and where to put them along with the OAT probe. I am going to be using a G3X, GTX-45R transponder, GTR-200 panel mount radio. So the questions are, what have others used, the location of mounting and if flying how it all worked out.
    I just put an order in on a kitfox and have not yet decided on avionics. Where are you getting your avionics from? Looks like a nice package...what do you think the package will cost you? I priced out a MGL and its 10k for everything including engine monitoring. If its close and not to much more I think I will go with garmin.

  2. #2
    Administrator DesertFox4's Avatar
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    Default Re: Avionics

    Dustin, I moved this post from antennas thread to itís own so we donít hijack the antenna thread.

    I went with MGLís Lite iEFIS and V-6 com radio to keep costs down. Still has more features than Iíll need. Installation was simple with the engine RDAC module and canbus system. Havent flown behind it yet but powered up it looks really good. No where near $10,000.00 however I only wanted one screen.

    9113E847-BE2F-41D1-BD18-4B7E2FC6D31D.jpg


    DesertFox4
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Esser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Avionics

    Personally if it was me and the same price, I would go with MGL
    ------------------
    Josh Esser
    Flying SS7
    Rotax 914iS
    AirMaster Prop

    Edmonton, AB, CWL3

  4. #4
    Senior Member jiott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Avionics

    When you are comparing avionics on features and price, don't forget to figure in the cost of software (firmware) and database updates. Major software updates usually happen once a year or so, but database updates come out once a month. The different manufacturers vary widely on the charge for these updates. I have Dynon Skyview and ALL the updates are totally free with no yearly subscription. Garmin, I have heard, charges quite a bit, others are somewhere in between. If you figure in the update costs over a few years it may change your mind about just looking at first cost. With costly updates you also may be more tempted to fly around with out-of-date information or forego the latest new features.
    Jim Ott
    Portland, OR
    Kitfox SS7 flying
    Rotax 912ULS

  5. #5

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    Default Re: Avionics

    MGL databases are free. Also, you lucky people in the USA can get free map downloads

    I bought MGL kit so that I could configure the screens how I want. Initially it was quite daunting because the manual assumes a knowledge that I don't have but the MGL geniuses obviously do. However, an extremely helpful guy on the MGL forum (Australian ) put together a couple of videos and they were enough to kick start me. Once I got going it all became a lot easier and now I'm adding, deleting and designing all sorts of goodies. I'm even getting rid of panel warning lights by designing analogue and digital inputs to trigger 'lights' on the EFIS. Believe me, if I can do it anyone can.

    PS: Same MGL unit as DesertFox but Trig radio and transponder remote units only, hidden behind the panel and controlled by the EFIS.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Avionics

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulSS View Post
    MGL databases are free. Also, you lucky people in the USA can get free map downloads

    I bought MGL kit so that I could configure the screens how I want. Initially it was quite daunting because the manual assumes a knowledge that I don't have but the MGL geniuses obviously do. However, an extremely helpful guy on the MGL forum (Australian ) put together a couple of videos and they were enough to kick start me. Once I got going it all became a lot easier and now I'm adding, deleting and designing all sorts of goodies. I'm even getting rid of panel warning lights by designing analogue and digital inputs to trigger 'lights' on the EFIS. Believe me, if I can do it anyone can.

    PS: Same MGL unit as DesertFox but Trig radio and transponder remote units only, hidden behind the panel and controlled by the EFIS.
    Thanks guys! Who is the best to buy from? I am doing one 10" screen, v6 radio, transponder ads-b, rdac engine monitoring. I got a quote from MGL and I attached it to see if I am thinking correct and have not forgotten anything. I know I need an ELT aslo. I am planning on running the Edge Performance turbo 912, so I want boost gauge and EGTs. Are those videos on youtube on how to setup the screens?
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Avionics

    Quote Originally Posted by jiott View Post
    When you are comparing avionics on features and price, don't forget to figure in the cost of software (firmware) and database updates. Major software updates usually happen once a year or so, but database updates come out once a month. The different manufacturers vary widely on the charge for these updates. I have Dynon Skyview and ALL the updates are totally free with no yearly subscription. Garmin, I have heard, charges quite a bit, others are somewhere in between. If you figure in the update costs over a few years it may change your mind about just looking at first cost. With costly updates you also may be more tempted to fly around with out-of-date information or forego the latest new features.
    Thanks Jim, that is one thing I don't like about garmin, they charge you for everything. What do you think the Dynon Skyview system will cost me, efis, engine monitoring, transponder, ads-b, and who do you suggest buying from?
    Last edited by Shadowrider; 01-21-2018 at 12:05 AM.

  8. #8

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    Default Re: Avionics

    You really don't need to buy the harnesses for the MGL CAN bus. It really is a matter of twisting some 22AWG wire (or using a shielded cable where the twisting has already been done for you) and at either end of the daisy chain of connected components you just chuck in a resistor. If you can solder then you might choose to solder wires into the DSub connectors. If you're like me and it looks like a cat has got loose with a soldering iron, just use the crimp-type pins in a DSub connector. Yes, those MGL harnesses make it more plug 'n' play but you can save yourself a few 00 $s by doing a very simple job yourself.

    The videos on the MGL website from Dutchroll will get you going and after a short while you can see that it is easy to put a boost gauge onto your screen (try doing that with the others). You simply insert the type of drawing you want into the list of things on the screen e.g. you might want a barograph for boost instead of a round dial. You then just tell that barograph what it is displaying (so you tell it it's the boost from RDAC 1) and that's it. Chuck in the max and min boost you want, throw in an alarm if you want to and just put it where you want on the screen. EGTs are even easier

    Edited to add: since you're buying a Lite you'll need to add an Extender Module in order to input OAT. You can use it for many more things than that, including AoA and it gives you a bunch of ports for digital and analogue inputs and outputs but, specifically, the Lite doesn't come with an input for the OAT probe.

    Edited Edited: Seriously, take a look at the Trig TY91 radio and, for you guys in the US with the 'upped' requirements for ADSB, the Trig TT22 transponder. They both work with the MGL interface and the TY91 does have a built in intercom as well, so no need to buy a separate one of those.
    Last edited by PaulSS; 01-21-2018 at 12:36 AM.

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Avionics

    Here's a few screenshots of screens I've been playing with recently. Bear in mind that until a couple of weeks ago I din't have the first clue what I was doing. I'm still working on the engine screen (which I'm going to use as my start up screen) and the gap in the bottom right will be for the checklists, with just a forward and back arrow to go through them.

    You'll notice I haven't got fuel tank information but that's because the Eurofox (that I'll be building) doesn't have contents senders and I'm happy with that. You can install trim and flap information if you wish (and use electricity for those) but, again, I'm just keeping it manual and simple.

    You'll have synthetic vision etc but I just haven't loaded that stuff yet.

    This is for a 912iS, hence the lack of CHTs and, instead, MAT & EAT.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    Senior Member PapuaPilot's Avatar
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    Default Re: Avionics

    Don't buy your avionics till you are ready to install them in the plane. So much changes so fast. Also the warranty may start ticking. At this point you want to start looking, deciding on the brand, what components are needed, where they go in your plane, antennas, wiring routing, etc. If you are able I would suggest spending 2-3 days minimum at Oshkosh visiting Garmin, Dynon, MGL, etc. so you can see the products first hand.

    Usually you can get the best price during the week of OSH, but you have all your fact finding done. When you are ready to buy them go to OSH again (maybe 1-3 years down the road). Research the prices from all of the big dealers for the entire package before you go so you know who can give you the best deal. Spend a day or two visiting the dealers at OSH and see what price they can give you for your package and be ready to write the check.

    I have no regrets getting the Garmin G3X package and yes, I wish I didn't have to pay for database updates (you don't pay for software updates). I keep up to date with iPad with the Garmin Pilot app for $75 per year.

    There is a lot more to consider than the $ for updates when choosing your panel:
    -Ease of installation (but this is only done once, so don't get too hung up on this)
    -Screen quality (resolution, view angle, glare, etc.)
    -User friendly
    -Variety of choices for screens
    -Weight (shouldn't be a big difference)
    -Do they have a transponder, autopilot, ADSB, COM, intercom, etc. too (if not how will it interface with the brand you choose)
    -Presentation of information (can you pick where things go on the screen)
    -Warranty, customer service, help desk, company reputation
    Phil Nelson
    A&P-IA, Maintenance Instructor
    KF 5, Continental IO-240
    Flying

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