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Trio Auto Pilot Install
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I am going to document the daily install of my new Trio Avionics EZ Pilot and EZ2 altitute hold with vertical speed http://www.trioavionics.com . The harnesses used are my original panel harness and the new altitude hold harness made by Steinair, http://www.steinair.com . I would seriously, and without reservation, recommend Steinair. I guess you will also get a sneak preview of my carbon fiber panel to go with the rest of the "Black Magic" theme.

autopilot1.jpg

The package has arrived. I have separated the parts into altitude hold on the right, autopilot on the left. It is a very clean setup and I am impressed with the quality of each of the separate parts. The servos are robust but don't seem to weight as much as I had anticipated, a good thing. The pushrods even have one female insert for the rod end bearings with the other side open for cutting to length, nice touch. I haven't read the plans yet but plan to start around 3PM eastern time.

autopilot2.jpg

Kind of a fuzzy shot of my carbon fiber panel. The autopilot head will go in the vacant left hole. I am going to install it first just so I can see where I have space to install the altitude hold units. The altitude hold units are two separate parts and do not have to be side by side. We will see............any thoughts folks?

autopilot3.jpg

This is the EZ Pilot harness connection coming out of the 430 into the Trio. This is a very small example of the quality of work performed by the guys, and maybe gals, at Steinair. These people are definitely one of the "highly recommend" group. I'll post some shots of their altitude hold wiring harness tomorrow when I get it UPS. Off we go to get some work done. Thanks Stein!!!

autopilot4.jpg

This the Trio autopilot head. It measures 3.25 inches square. The hole are standard spacing. Be careful in drilling your holes, as this unit is very close. The face is flush and does not have a protruding ring so the hole in your panel is seen. I'll polish up the hole edges. BTW, this is a very light weight unit.

autopilot5.jpg

Using the Steinair harness it was a simple matter of attaching ground and GPS data ground with power to the buss. The unit has it's own switch so there is no need for a single throw switch. There is a ground momentary servo power interupt I need to put on the panel. My current thoughts are to install it somewhere around the throttle. As you can see on the panel, my right hand is going to be busy, no big deal though. Anybody got any thoughts on that? Yes, that is a 7" LCD screen on the right with the DVD player mounted behind the panel. Anybody for in flight movies.............before anyone asks, the square hole in the middle top is a traffic avoidance system wired through the intercom.

autopilot6.jpg

OK, time for the servo install. First thing you need to do is clamp your elevator in the neutral position. This places the bellcrank in the correct orientation for what follows.

autopilot7.jpg

The first thing you do is assemble the servo tray. It consists of the bottom plate and angle bracket which will rivet to the bottom fuselage elevator bellcrank support. I dimpled five rivet holes for 4-5s and used 4-4s to attach the bottom to the angle brace. The angle brace at the length provided from Trio places it near the bellcrank pivot point. I followed Sam's advice and moved it reward on the bottom. In doing so, I had to trim a little off the bottom of the angle as the fuselage support (rib) gets smaller as it goes aft. I went with the reasoning the radius bend at the rear added enough rigidity to move the angle support more forward than middle but not flush with the front........man, that was a long explaination for probably nothing. Anyway, you will be able to drill the tray flush with the passenger side of the angle........see next picture. Yes, there is an "extra" hole in the picture...don't ask.

autopilot8.jpg

I don't need to say this, but be sure and countersink the angle.

autopilot9.jpg

One little pushrod. I left the servo in the pic so you would have a reference as the actual size.

autopilot10.jpg

OK, one servo installed. Follow the plans and drill the hole in the bellcrank equal distance as the distance from the pivot point and the attach point on the servo arm. I used the next size longer bolt to attach the rod end bearing to the bellcrank. The pushrod tub is wider that the rod end bearing and you don't want the pushrod pivoting and jaming on the end of end pushrod. I ended up using three washers between the rod end bearing and the bellcrank. This did not leave enough bolt length to fully go through the provided bolt, close but not quite and what the heck, I had the next length bolt available.



OK, started at 3PM today and ended at 9PM with about an hour with phone calls, dog feeding, eating, etc. so I'm looking at 4.5 hour of actual work to get the autopilot head wired, servo tray drilled, deburred, dimpled, prime with........OH NO.....rattle can, fabricated and servo install. I'll take that.



So far, Trio and Steinair.........YOU ROCK.



Email me at Bo124rs@hotmail.com