Avionics News July 2019 - 16

In this monthly column, Ric Peri of the AEA's Washington, D.C., office, informs members of the latest regulatory updates.

B Y

R I C

P E R I
A EA V I C E P R ES I D E N T O F G OV E R N M E N T & I N D U ST RY A F FA I RS

Oh, the value of
understanding history!

T

he Aircraft Electronics Association has the pleasure
and distinction of co-chairing a Federal Aviation
Administration aviation rulemaking advisory
committee that is looking into the relationship between the
regulation (14 CFR Part 145), the advisory materials (Advisory
Circulars 145-9 and 145-10), and the guidance materials (FAA
Order 8900.1).
While we are a couple of years away from having a conclusion and recommendation, the exercise in investigating the
regulatory history is quite interesting.
My research of the history of the repair station regulations
begins at roughly the same time as the regulations themselves
following the passage of the Civil Aeronautics Act of 1938,
which transferred the federal civil aviation responsibilities
from the Commerce Department to a new independent agency,
the Civil Aeronautics Authority. It was the Air Commerce
Act of 1926 that created the Aeronautics Branch, within
the Department of Commerce, which had assumed the primary responsibility for early aviation oversight. While there
were regulations and guidance before 1938, it was the Civil
Aeronautics Act of 1938 that established the regulatory structure that we see today beginning with the Civil Air Regulations
and transitioning to the Federal Aviation Regulations in 1967.
While the history of the FAA and the regulatory oversight
of aviation is much more complex, in my humble option,
there are three fundamental events in the history of repair sta16

avionics news

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july

2019

tions: the Civil Aeronautics Act of 1938; the Department of
Transportation Act of 1966 (and the fundamental establishment
of the FAA along with the codification of the Federal Aviation
Regulations); and the FAA Part 145 rulemaking in 1999.
The Civil Aeronautics Act of 1938 brought us the Civil Air
Regulations 18 and 52. CAR 18, which addressed maintenance,
repair and alterations of airframes, powerplants, propellers and
appliances, is the predecessor to 14 CFR Part 43 that we utilize
today. The value of the history of CAR 18 (and its accompanying guidance, CAM 18) are the definitions and descriptions that
were eliminated in the 1967 transition to the FARs.
As an example; while FAR Part 1 defines major and minor
alterations, CAR 18 contains the basic definition of an alteration. According to CAR 18, "an alteration means any appreciable change in the design of an airframe, powerplant, propeller or appliance." In contrast, CAR 18 defined a repair as "the
restoration of an airframe, powerplant, propeller or appliance to
a condition for safe operation after damage or deterioration." In
order to make today's determination of major or minor alteration, you must understand the difference between a repair and
an alteration. For those definitions, you must look into the history of CAR 18.
Civil Air Regulations 52 addressed repair station certificates.
Back in the day, CAR 52 established the requirements for the
issuance of repair station certificates and ratings and the basic
operating rules repair stations had to follow. It is interesting to



Avionics News July 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News July 2019

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Avionics News July 2019 - 1
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