Menu Sign In Contact FAQ
Welcome to our forums

EAC (Evolution Aircraft Company) to cease production

To make certified planes, you need to be a 145 company and – for practical purposes – have an in-house DER and DAR. In EASA land (e.g. Socata) you need to have the 145 and 21.

The Evo may have contained materials and processes which rendered it fundamentally impossible to cerify but that could have been rectified.

This isn’t like software in a homebuilt-market product which may need a substantial rewrite to get a TSO.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

You need to do a lot more if you want to gain a type certificate (TC). The FAA has a handbook detailing the process:

Obtaining a TC for something that already exists and was designed outside the certification process is highly unusual.

However two examples spring to (my) mind, that is Europa XS/Liberty XL2 and Pulsar/Wega (the latter didn’t finish the certification process though, since the prototype crashed in the spin recovery testing).


When Lancair went into the certified business their original plan was to certify the “ES” kitplane as the “LC-40”.
That was a lengthy process during which almost every part of the airplane had to be re-designed. The result was the Lancair Columbia 300.

I think that Lancair should have stayed with the kitplanes, like Van’s Aircraft.

achimha wrote:

It’s an amateur homebuilt aircraft,…

We’ve had that in a recent thread, but “amateur homebuilt” has a different meaning for me than it had for Evolution. At least, other than some competitors, they were honest enough to call it “build assist”:

EDDS - Stuttgart

It’s a legal term, with a clear legal meaning. That meaning may be different for different countries, and probably very different of what an arbitrary individual’s idea is.

The elephant is the circulation

Which European homebuilt registries have a “build assist” option? The usual option here is the “51%” one. And in some cases you have to dismantle to 51% and reassemble to put one onto a new registry… of course who decides what the 51% is, is another story.

There is very little traffic about this issue on the Lancair forum. Just a couple of people, one who has paid into escrow to buy an Evo.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

There is no problem pretending those 51%. Somebody I know built an N-reg homebuilt in Germany without doing anything. He just had a guy do it for him. There are companies in Germany specialized in building homebuilts under somebody else’s name.

Of course the whole “build assist” program is a charade.

We did this in many previous threads but much depends on whether the registry in question requires “CAA” inspector involvement at the Annual.

The FAA effectively does, by requiring a “non builder owner” to use an A&P to sign off the plane. So the downside of any level of factory assistance, right up to using somebody (not officially the factory) to build the whole thing and selling it to you, is basically nonexistent.

The UK CAA, via the LAA inspector, does the same thing, so the builder owner has no advantage over the next (non builder) owner. The UK system is actually really tight, especially if you get a “difficult” inspector

Others e.g. Netherlands (PH-reg) are different, and there can be a big loss of privileges for the non builder owner.

So speaking of the factory-assisted Evolution, there would not be a problem, assuming you could get one onto some usable registry in the first place.

However the main market by far is the USA. There are only around 3 Evos in Europe – one based in CZ, one in the former USSR, and one last reported parked in Bulgaria. The other 75-80 are in the USA. And clearly it has failed in the USA.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

An aircraft can be FAA registered in Experimental Amateur Built (E-AB) category if the owner satisfies certain conditions, including the 51% condition. In other words, if somebody hires somebody else to build a whole plane for him he can’t register it in E-AB, which is a significant downside. However, he can get some assistance, remain the legal manufacturer and get a repairman certificate which gives him annual condition inspection rights on that plane.

If somebody buys a used, flying FAA E-AB registered aircraft they don’t have a repairman certificate for that plane so they need an A&P to sign off annual condition inspections. The A&P does not need an IA and only makes maintenance log entries (no other paperwork) to compete an Annual. Very often this ends up being a paperwork exercise on the part of a non-professional A&P friend or acquaintance. Also, and significantly, any work on plane other than the inspection can be done by anybody, no A&P required, so non-builder E-AB owners often know their planes pretty well after a while.

Re the Evolution, there have been a zillion homebuilt designs that have come and gone and the prospects for the success of an extremely complex pressurized homebuilt have never seemed that promising to me.

Last Edited by Silvaire at 04 Oct 14:39
Sign in to add your message

Back to Top