Garmin parts and extended lead times

Garmin recently announced extended lead times for many of their baseline aviation parts such as GTN, GNC, GTR, GNX, GTX345 etc due to parts supplier issues. Currently all existing and new orders are subject to a 6 month lead time (that might be extended). Other parts like G5, GI275, GFC500, G3X, GTX335 were parts are available still suffer from extended delivery times, in some cases up to 14 weeks.

Garmin also states that dealers should not start any installations until it is confirmed that all necessary parts have been shipped from Garmin.

This means that we will need to re-evaluate our waiting list and prioritize customers that are looking for parts that are available like Garmin G5 and GFC500 installations.

Garmin GI275 EFIS vs Garmin G5

So what is the difference?

GI275 contains everything inside the unit (no extra boxes are required for the standard installation ADI/HSI). Its mounted from the behind in an existing instrument hole, it’s the “real thing” when it comes to build quality solid aluminium chassis (in some cases heavier than a traditional VAC driven directional gyro), TSO certified, it has Connext wireless capability, touch screen, internal VFR GPS (if enabled), capable of displaying synthetic vision (option), internal navigation/terrain/obstacle databases, can interface to almost everything and if you have 2 ea GI275 ADAHRS you can remove existing airspeed, altimeter, turn coordinator, vertical speed indicator and possibly also existing NAV CDI’s.

The Garmin G5 need’s a separate OAT module (GAD13), it need’s a separate ARINC adapter (GAD29B) that connects the GTN/GNS GPS and NAV to the G5, you will need to keep the basic T intact (airspeed, altimeter, turn coordinator and vertical speed indicator can not be removed).  However the G5 has 3 advantages over the GI275 and that is excellent integration with the GFC500 autopilot (the G5 and GFC500 is practically built as a system made for eachother), much lower weight (the weight of the GI275 may be an issue in some aircraft instrument panels) and the lower price? Well the G5 is quite expensive compared to the GI275 if you also take into account all the features that the GI275 EFIS offers.

One common good thing for both GI275 and G5 is that you can most likely remove the existing VAC system. (G5 can not emulate the attitude signals that the Century autopilot requires but then again, a Garmin GFC500 autopilot is the way to go).

Garmin Flight Stream FS210 Bluetooth interface for legacy units (GN430W/530W)

The Garmin Flight Stream 210 Bluetooth interface has been available for many year’s however not that many know that this unit may be installed and connected to an older device such as the Garmin GNS430W COM/NAV/GPS.  The FS210 enables flight plan transfer between the GNS430W and a portable device with the Garmin Pilot software package. The FS210 has a built in AHRS (attitude heading reference) and the aircraft’s attitude may be displayed in the Garmin Pilot application. The FS210 does not have the capability to update any databases and if you have a Garmin GTN series navigator we recommend the Garmin Flight Stream FS510 that contains both Bluetooth and WiFI (for database updates). The FS510 simply slides into the SD card slot located in the front panel of every GTN series navigator making the physical installation very simple. The FS210 may also be interfaced with legacy Garmin G1000 systems (GDU display unit software version 15.00 and above)

Garmin GPS175 a replacement for Bendix/King KLN89B/KLN94

In this case the customers existing GPS KLN89B basically was out of service and the aircraft already had a King KX165A 8.33kHz COM/NAV and a Trig TT31 Mode-S transponder. The most affordable solution was to replace the KL89B for a Garmin GPS175 in the same location. In this particular case the installation was limited to VFR only since the annunciator/relay unit does not support glide slope which is required for a full IFR installation. The GPS175 was also connected to the TT31 transponder for ADS-B out. The GPS175 has a built in Bluetooth interface  that enables the pilot to send and received flight plans via the Garmin Pilot software for portable devices such as an Ipad.

Garmin GFC500 autopilot in PA28R Series roll, pitch and automatic pitch trim.

One of our latest installations – Piper PA28R-201 including Garmin G5 attitude and HSI with OAT, GMA345 audiopanel, GTN650Xi with Flight Stream 510 WiFi/Bluetooth interface, GTX345 ADS-B in/out transponder and GFC500 autopilot with pitch, roll and automatic pitch trim. The existing Garmin GNS430 is now used as the second/backup COM/NAV/GPS.

Garmin G5 EFIS… the new standard?

Most of our installations today include at least one Garmin G5 EFIS display. Many pilots really like the  G5 but then again the Aspen E5 is a strong competitor. If you have a Garmin audiopanel, Garmin navigator and perhaps in the future – plan for a Garmin GFC series autopilot.. well then the Garmin G5 EFIS is a must. However if you already have a good working autopilot like the S-tec 55X or dual axis KAP140 then you might choose the Aspen E5 instead of the Garmin G5.

Garmin GFC500 autopilot, again?

For about a year ago we installed some Garmin Avionics in a C172. The customer was quite sure that they wanted a Garmin GFC500 autopilot in a couple of years or so we prepared the aircraft with the necessary wiring for the servo’s. Well now a year later the GFC500 was installed below a picture of the layout.

Aspen E5 EFIS / Garmin GNX375 GPS and ADS-B in/out xpdr

The old King KLN94 GPS and KT76C transponder was replaced by the Garmin GNX375 a combined WAAS GPS navigator and ADS-B in/out transponder. The attitude indicator, directional gyro and VAC system (dual VAC pumps) was removed and replaced by a Aspen Avionics E5 EFIS with “advanced features unlock” that includes OAT and winds. The GNX375 has an internal bluetooth transceiver and built in backup AHRS (requires an Ipad and the Garmin pilot software) so we also installed a RAM mount for portable electronic devices and a Garmin GSB15 dual port USB charger.

Garmin GFC500 autopilot in a Cessna 210

We have noted an increased interest in autopilots, not just any autopilot but the Garmin GFC500 that in it’s basic configuration has pitch/roll and automatic pitch trim as an option. Some aircraft may also be equipped with a yaw servo but that might seem like an overkill for small GA aircraft like the Piper PA28 that has a one axis roll Century IIB autopilot as standard. The GFC500 requires that the Garmin G5 EFIS system is installed and preferably a WAAS GPS navigator such as the Garmin GTN 650/750Xi series for full functionality.

Total system pricing for a roll/pitch/pitch-trim, dual G5 attitude and HSI with OAT option is about USD15k. Installation cost varies depending on the complexity of the servos and standard PA28 series with battery in the tail section being the easiest. PA28R series are much more complex since the servos are located in the most AFT tail section and very hard to reach.

Is is difficult to estimate installation time since it may include the removal of VAC system, complete rework of pitot/static system and re-doing the existing installation.

The picture below is from a C210 with a GFC500 pitch/roll autopilot with pitch trim option. The attitude indicator was kept in the panel since the aircraft has de-icing so the VAC/Pressure pump can not be removed.

G5 and Avidyne?

The Garmin G5 is a non TSO part and must be installed in accordance with an EASA STC. The G5 STC defines all compatible units and the Avidyne IFD series are not listed. However the recent revision of the Avidyne STC lists the G5 as an approved display for the IFD440 series. We also installed a JPI EDM730 engine analyser with EGT/CHT/FF/RPM/Carbtemp sensors, 2 ea Appareo Stratus Power panel mounted USB chargers and a MaxPulse Wing tip LED landing light controller. The aircraft had an older GMA340 audiopanel that was replaced for a Garmin GMA345 audiopanel with automatic squelch, bluetooth interface and  USB charging port. The existing TT31 Mode-S transponder was connected for ADS-B out. The installation looks simple but is a combination of 4 ea EASA STC’s, 1 ea grandfathered FAA STC, 1 ea EASA Minor change and additional CS-STAN for those items not covered by STC’s.