The infamous Cessna “seat-slip” accidents of the 1970s and early 1980s prompted a recurring Airworthiness Directive to inspect the seat rails for wear. If the holes in those rails were elongated from wear, then disaster could strike.
The seat’s locking pins could slide out of the holes. This could produce fatal consequences on takeoff, when seats slid back as the airplane entered a climb attitude. What happened next is anybody’s guess. Most likely the pilot instinctively grabbed the control yoke in an attempt to pull himself forward. The result was a low-altitude stall.
The Crossover Classic was given new seat rails, thanks to McFarlane Aviation Products of Baldwin City, Kansas. That was a significant safety improvement. The new rails have nice, round holes that grip the seat locking pins firmly. And there are secondary seat stops farther aft on the rails, which serve as a backup.
In one blog I said that adding the new seat rails did away with the AD requiring inspections every 100 hours. I was wrong, McFarlane said. Though new seat rails may provide peace of mind, that 100-hour recurring inspection still stands. But I suspect that it will be quite some time before the freshly-installed rails will show any signs of wear.
In other news, the sweeps Skylane is being readied for its voyage to EAA AirVenture, which takes place from July 25-31 at Wittman Field in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. I’m planning on leaving the morning of Friday, July 22. Here’s hoping N182CX realizes its potential of 160-knot cruise speeds along the way! Those interested can check the ship’s progress on www.flightaware.com