The FAA has published the final report from the Amateur-Built Aircraft Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) that was re-formed in 2008 to take another shot at the advisory material controlling Experimental/Amateur-Built aircraft. Signed in early August by the FAA’s Frank Paskiewicz and midmonth by the EAA’s Earl Lawrence and Van’s Aircraft founder Dick VanGrunsven, the report restates the elements of change that we reported from AirVenture in August.
In short, the dreaded 20/20/11 requirement could well be gone—the FAA said last year that it wanted the builder to perform 20% fabrication, 20% assembly (and 11% as either) to add up the “majority” of the work. Builders decried the proposal, calling it unworkable and an unnecessary complication. However, until the final Advisory Circular has been published, we won't know if this proposal has truly been taken back. The document published today says only that "after much deliberation among ARC members, AIR-200 [the FAA] agreed to consider withdrawal of the 20/20/11 proposal."
As we reported in August, the definition of fabrication has been broadened to the point that it should be useful in the context of modern kits. In addition, a single group of inspectors will be assigned the task of vetting new kits; this NKET (National Kit Evaluation Team) will be responsible for validating new kits and verifying that the manufacturers sell kits with a "majority" of the work to be done by the builder.
Although the final guidance has yet to be published by the FAA, the tenor of the report released today suggests that the recommendations of industry, builders and members of the ARC are likely to be heeded.
KITPLANES will have a thorough analysis of the final rule soon after it's published.