Our Sierra has a cracked pilot side window that needs to be replaced. Can anyone direct me to a reasonably priced source for a replacement? Also, does replacing a side window qualify as something that an owner can do without a mechanics sign-off?
I need some help with locating a replacement windshield for my “77” Sport 150 S/N MB858. Just talked with Beech and got a quote for $2973.02, I think the 2 cents is a little too much to pay. Although they have one in stock. Any information would be helpful.
Credit to Bob Steward:
Let me address both of these at once.
I buy all my windows from an LP Aero Master Stocking Distributor, FletchAir in Houston TX. (800-FA-WINGS or http://www.fletchair.com/index2.asp)
I’ve used them as a supplier since ’86, and have found that the quality of the LP product is excellent, and the service from FletchAir is among the best you’ll find. I’ve seen some of the OTHER brands of windshields and found that they frequently have distortions in them, so choose wisely.
The trick is that you have to call Garner Rice, the head guy in product support, and let him get the Beech windows. They are a “Grumman” shop, and the regular parts guys will tell you they don’t HAVE any Beech stuff. They’re right, they don’t stock Beech, but they can get any window LP makes at a great price, drop shipped from the Pennsylvania factory, so you just have to ASK GARNER.
Yes, the FAR 43 appendix A subparagraph (c) Preventive Maintenance task list includes all side windows in a non-pressurized aircraft, though I’d recommend getting some experienced help even if you are not asking for an A&P sign off.
As far as the windshield, having an A&P sign off is required, but that only means that the A&P must supervise (in person) to the extent needed to assure that the work is of sufficient quality and done in the correct manner to be airworthy.
Putting in windshields is tricky and time consuming work. But a lot of the labor is “grunt work” and can be done by an owner without the A&P actually being on the clock for the whole job. In my opinion, its probably even MORE important to seek experienced help in putting a windshield in than for a side window, and the cost of failure is quite high (a replacement windshield is hundreds of dollars if you scratch or crack it), so seek out competent help for the installation. Rivets must be drilled out and driven in, to do the installation, so its usually a good idea to do a new windshield BEFORE you paint, if you have that on your list of fix ups.
AC 43.13-1B (change 1) has lots of information about working with plexi.
There are numerous acceptable crack repairs, not all of them are PRETTY, but they are airworthy when done correctly. So you might be able to hold off on windshield or side window replacement if you are willing to live with a patch.
A factor not discussed is the tint (or lack of it) in the windows. Most all the originals were GREEN tint, even if you THINK they are “clear” they most likely were Green. Get a look at the edge of the window and you’ll see a water blue-green color rather than a clear “white” color.
I prefer the “solar gray” color to cut the glare and not distort the true colors. Of course if you are replacing just 1 window, you may not want it to look different from the rest, but the more modern look of the gray tint is very attractive in my opinion, and you might be planning on replacing the rest of those foggy 30 year old windows before too long, so its something to consider.
Credit to Jeff Bryant:
Go here for the windshield; cut and paste all of the link if necessary: