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  #1  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:08 PM
Fenderbean Fenderbean is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Huntsville AL
Posts: 78
Default How do people learn this stuff?

Been looking at a few things around here and just wondering how the average guy with no back ground learns how to build his electrical system for his plane? I know some can be simple but with all these avionics options now I have to ask?

I had crew chiefs that went to school just for the wire/avionics side of the house in the military, how would even your A&P know how to do some of these advanced setups? Is it just about being able to read electrical diagrams? When you buy something like the GX3 does it come with a wiring guide for dummies?

I know youtube is a great thing but dang how do folks wire up a full plane with all these systems, interior lighting, heated seats door sensors and back ups with back ups???

Last edited by Fenderbean : 10-15-2020 at 03:10 PM.
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  #2  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:16 PM
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bkervaski bkervaski is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fenderbean View Post
Been looking at a few things around here and just wondering how the average guy with no back ground learns how to build his electrical system for his plane? I know some can be simple but with all these avionics options now I have to ask?

I had crew chiefs that went to school just for the wire/avionics side of the house in the military, how would even your A&P know how to do some of these advanced setups? Is it just about being able to read electrical diagrams? When you buy something like the GX3 does it come with a wiring guide for dummies?

I know youtube is a great thing but dang how do folks wire up a full plane with all these systems, interior lighting, heated seats door sensors and back ups with back ups???
A lot of us have the wiring designed and even harnesses built by SteinAir. To the uninitiated, it seems overwhelming, but its not, you learn a lot during the process.
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Last edited by bkervaski : 10-15-2020 at 03:19 PM.
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  #3  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:21 PM
PilotjohnS PilotjohnS is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Southwest
Posts: 1,291
Default the dance is just a shuffle

Like riveting, we learn this electrical stuff one wire at a time. Yes it is overwhelming at first, but we all learn the Dynon or Garmin vernacular when dollars are involved.
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  #4  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:27 PM
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jcarne jcarne is online now
 
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I too was very overwhelmed at first and was looking for a way to not read those massive manuals. In the end you will have to spend some serious time reading them... I also went with a diagram by Bob Nuckolls, that made it a lot more simple. That only covers your basic architecture though. You will still have to look at how to make all your avionics connections/interconnections. In hindsight it is fairly easy now but back when I started it certainly wasn't...
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  #5  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:28 PM
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AAflyer AAflyer is offline
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Fort Mill, South Carolina
Posts: 369
Default Sparks!

Oh my...You're gonna get a lot of advice on this.
Which is JUST WHAT YOU WANT!!!

For the record, I am not an electrician, and I, too, was very intimidated about wiring my bird. I even called up a "completion shop" to see what it would cost for them to do the wiring, and after a very patient conversation, he actually encouraged me to do it myself...as he said...one wire at a time.

I attended an EAA weekend workshop.
I read everything on this site.
I used the Vertical Power digital circuit breaker system to eliminate a LOT of wiring for CBs.
I had SteinAir make my wiring bundles and connectors behind the panel. (There were a couple of mistakes, so if you do this, you STILL have to double-check every wire in every plug.)
I asked a LOT of questions of the vendors I bought stuff from: Dynon, VertPower, Stein, B & C, antennae manufacturers, switch manufacturers, and..
most importantly...utilized my knowledgable friends in my EAA chapter!!!
You ARE in a local chapter, aren't you?!

Each new wire or component installed added to my confidence until I crossed a "threshold", where I knew I could figure most anything out...with a little help.

There's a lot of HELP out there (here)...be sure to ask for it.

Good luck with your build...you're gonna LOVE the end product.
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  #6  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:29 PM
tims88 tims88 is offline
 
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Location: Arvada, CO
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I haven't gotten far enough to do it myself but some good resources to learn from are:
  • The AeroElectric Connection by Bob Nuckolls, along with the Matronics forum that Bob responds to
  • The Aircraft Wiring Guide by Marc Ausman
  • Installation manuals for whatever avionics you go with
  • Hours and hours and hours of reading about it on this site from others that have already done it

There's also classes put on throughout the year by EAA and the Aircraft Electronics Association. Not sure what their schedules look like right now with the pandemic though.
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  #7  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:29 PM
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DanH DanH is offline
 
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Buy or download a copy of "The Aeroelectric Connection". Read it twice. At least.

Marc Ausman's "Aircraft Wiring Guide" would also be a good buy.

You can go the the avionics manufacturer's website and download the installation manuals for what boxes you might install. Garmin, for example, does very good manuals with a lot of detail about how they want things done.

Edit:

HA! Exactly the same advice, at exactly the same post time!
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  #8  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:33 PM
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mike newall mike newall is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Yorkshire, England
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When you started your project, what did you know ?

What have you learned ?

How many skills have you expanded on ?

Avionics can be tricky, but the electrics on the aeroplane are not. I always advocate utilising either a plug and play system such as Approach Systems or Advanced, or going to a specialist like Stein. You can do lots of wonderful stuff during your build, but the hooking up of modern avionics can and is daunting - use a specialist, it will save you time and angst and result in that - Oooooo moment when you turn it on

The two 12's we did were an absolute joy when it came to the avionics. A hub, some superbly crafted looms by Vans/Stein and a fault free result with no squawks whatsoever.
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  #9  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:38 PM
BobTurner BobTurner is offline
 
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Location: Livermore, CA
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Make certain you also read about digital communications. Buzz words you want to understand include RS232, ports, baud rate, format. You need to read and understand this before making any purchases. More than one builder has bought an inexpensive box with only a couple of RS232 ports, and after the fact realized he wanted four of them! Figure out how many you need before spending money.
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  #10  
Old 10-15-2020, 03:44 PM
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scard scard is offline
 
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Location: Cedar Park, TX
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You end up educating yourself, just like your crew chief did. Except, you only "must" learn just enough to do what you want to do on your one project. Yes, the components usually come with extensive documentation and example wiring/interconnect schematics which many of us find ourselves immersed in while we're working on that particular part.
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