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FAR 91 aircraft equipment required Day
2010-03-18

FAR 91 aircraft equipment required Day VFR minimum equipment: airspeed, altimeter, compass, tachometer, fuel gauge, oil temperature, oil pressure, (gear indicator and manifold pressure)
Night
VFR minimum equipment: Position lights, beacon, power source, and a flashlight. Class D airspace requires a radio while Class C and B requires radio, and an encoding transponder.
Transponder
required above 10,000' in TCA, in ARSA, and above ARSA. FAR 91.413 requires the transponder to be checked and certified within the preceding 24 calendar months.
Oxygen
requirements change at 12,500, 13,000, and 14,000
High altitude
checkout required to fly pressurized aircraft.
Emergency Locator Transmitter
(ELT) is required on all aircraft with some exceptions. FAR 91.207. 50 nm training flights are exempted. The ELT battery must be replaced after one hour of use or on a date of expected half-life. The ELT must be placarded and signed as to date of installation and the expiration dates of this half-life. The logbooks also require a signature by an Airframe & Power Plant (A&P) for this information. As a pilot you must know where to find this information.
IFR flight
has specific checks of VORs, altimeters, and static systems.
Registration
is required for legal ownership. The only way to be sure of registration is to check with the FAA Aircraft Registration Branch, in Oklahoma City. Every three years the validity of this registration must be confirmed to the FAA. FAR Part 47. This is a very neglected part of aircraft paper work. Registration expires according to Advisory Circular 61-23B after any of the following:
(1) Replaced by foreign registry
(2) Aircraft destroyed/scrapped
(3) Request to cancel
(4) Holder loses U.S. citizenship
(5) 30 days after death of holder
(6) Transfer of ownership
(7) Registration expires if owner leaves country for 6 months. A waiver of this expiration can be obtained.

Placards or manuals
must be in every aircraft, giving the performance limitations of the aircraft not limited to maneuvering speed, gross weight, prohibitions, and performance. Color-coded markings on the instruments are part of the limitations. Color codes on the airspeed indicator show never exceed speeds, normal operating speeds, flap operating speeds, and turbulent air limitations. The tachometer shows never exceed RPM, and sometimes ranges to be avoided for continuous operations. Normally, you wouldn't need a specific document, on file with the FAA, listing the operating limitations for a specific model aircraft.

Weight and balance
papers are specific to each aircraft and must be available. Any subsequent items permanently affixed to the aircraft must be added as weight and balance elements to the papers. It is a violation of the FARs to operate an aircraft in non-compliance of the operating limitations of the airworthiness certificate. Some aircraft manuals (Mooney's) are required equipment.

Airframe and engine
logbooks must show all maintenance performed. Any aircraft used for instructional purposes must have 100-hour inspections. All aircraft are required to have annual inspections. Minor maintenance may be performed by other than a licensed mechanic. It is a violation of the FARs to operate an aircraft in non-compliance of the operating limitations of the airworthiness certificate. The recommendations of manufacturer bulletins and the operating handbook regarding maintenance should be followed. FAR 91.407 requires a flight check and aircraft sign-off for any maintenance that changes flight characteristics. During the test you will be expected to know the location, requirements, and terminology of these logs as well as to explain the numbering system and meaning of each column on the AD chart.

Go through both the airframe and engine logbooks and post-it the last annual, inspection, the last 100-hour, the last ELT entry, the last transponder entry, and any supplemental modifications made.

Consider the CHECKLIST a required document.
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