The Piper Owner Society compiled what we believe is the best uAvionix review available, including dozens of anecdotes and tips from Piper owners who installed the uAvionix SkyBeacon ADS-B Out units on their planes.
uAvionix SkyBeacon reviews on installations in a Piper from the May issue included …
- Complete history of uAvionix and an analysis of their products by avionics expert and writer Bob Hart.
- uAvionix installation in a Piper Warrior article.
- Dozens of member installation photos and advice for installing in a Piper.
- Top 8 Installation Tips and Tricks.
- Test Checklist by member Richard Murray to help you pass the rebate test.
The June issue of Pipers Magazine then included more coverage, including a step-by-step installation article as Piper Owner Society Aviation Director Scott Sherer helped member Bob Skwarek install the SkyBeacon on an Arrow II.
Piper uAvionix Review
Among the things learned in this expansive study of uAvionix in a Piper …
- Use the uAvionix mounting template. You can print one on their website. At this point in their history, most Pipers are a bit different from each other. Print before you cut!
- Relatedly, you might need a fairing to adapt the SkyBeacon to your wingtip.
- You need an FAA Form 337 (modifications documentation) so have an A&P/IA available.
- Strongly consider paying the A&P/IA (and not trying to do this all yourself).
- If you have strobes the wiring gets a bit more complicated.
- Consider removing the wingtip, which makes wiring easier.
- Don’t be in a hurry. Most mistakes made were related to trying to go too fast.
Among the quotes from owners who installed uAvionix in their planes.
Took longer than the 10 minutes advertised, but my air-frame mechanic insisted on redoing the wiring, which was poorly spliced to my wingtip light. It actually took about four hours, including pulling out the back seat and bulk head to get to the old strobe light power supply to disconnect the strobe wire at its source. Also the entire wingtip needed to be removed, not just the position light, since he needed access to the nuts on the inside.”
“I can’t emphasize enough the skyBeacon only transmits when it receives the signal from the plane’s transponder and the transponder only transmits a signal in reply to an interrogation from a ground radar site.”
“The instructions don’t relay the importance of the step involving ‘Transponder Monitor Threshold.’ If this isn’t showing your squawk code you absolutely will not pass the validation flight for the $500 rebate.”
“In order to control the strobe switching, I had to change the wires going from the high voltage unit in the rear of the plane. This took about 30 minutes total.”
“Be very careful to input the correct ICAO code for your specific airplane. Each installation will present different challenges based on the type of airplane and how well it has been maintained. At the end of the day, this product is the easiest unit to install.”