New STC lets PA-32's Enjoy BasicMed Compliance - Good News!

All a PA–32 owner needs to do is receive a copy of the supplemental type certificate (STC) and letter of authorization from AOPA that allows certain PA–32 models, certified with an option for seven seats, to be flown as six-seat-restricted aircraft.

With several thousand Piper PA–32 Saratogas, Cherokee Sixes, and Lances out there, that news should make quite a few Piper pilots very happy.
“With more than 35,000 pilots flying under BasicMed, the medical certification reforms we fought for years to achieve have reduced some of the costs and burdensome regulations that pilots face, and this announcement means that even more pilots will have the opportunity to utilize BasicMed,” said AOPA President Mark Baker. “AOPA is committed to making aviation more accessible for everyone, and we will continue to work to expand the opportunities for BasicMed pilots.”
Here’s how AOPA made it happen, and what you have to do to fly your Piper PA–32 under BasicMed.
Starting in May 2017, the BasicMed rule took effect as an alternative to medical certification for many pilots. BasicMed allows eligible pilots to fly recreationally as pilot in command, under VFR or IFR, in single- or twin-engine aircraft with a maximum certificated takeoff weight of not more than 6,000 pounds, with no more than six occupants.
The sticking point for PA–32s was this: Those specs cover a large percentage of the general aviation fleet, but they do not cover some Piper PA–32 models that have an option for a seventh seat. Even if your airplane only has six seats and has never had the seventh installed, the capability for six or seven under the type certificate data sheet (TCDS) excludes the airplane from being piloted under BasicMed.
To make those airplanes BasicMed compliant, earlier this year AOPA requested that the FAA issue a supplemental type certificate (STC) that would restrict Piper Aircraft Models PA–32R-300, PA–32RT-300, PA–32RT-300T, PA–32R-301, PA–32R-301T, PA–32-301, and PA–32-301T to six seats—the way most of them are actually equipped most of the time.
Why was an STC required?
“Traditionally, these aircraft would be modified through the field approval process and FAA Form 337 but, since the models are ‘authorized under Federal law’ to carry more than 6 occupants, the only legal way to change a limitation is through an STC,” AOPA said in its application to the FAA.
AOPA noted that safety would not be affected. Nor would the aircraft’s Part 23 certification status, because the STC would not change weight, balance, structural strength, performance, flight characteristics, maximum operating speed, or any other parameters, “since it would only change an optional seat limitation,” said David Oord, AOPA senior director of regulatory affairs.
On March 2, the FAA’s Aircraft Certification Office granted the STC, which also limits the aircraft to a maximum flight altitude of 18,000 feet msl.
Since receiving the STC’s approval, AOPA has been working to set up the system by which aircraft owners may acquire the STC and receive technical support.
Requesting the STC
AOPA is making the STC available to anyone who requests it, at no charge to AOPA members, and for $99 to nonmembers. Contact the AOPA Pilot Information Center with your request.
Upon receiving a PA–32 owner’s STC request, AOPA will send the owner a Letter of Authorization to Utilize STC SA04064NY and a copy of the STC, which the owner will need to retain with the aircraft’s records.
An airframe and powerplant mechanic with inspection authorization (A&P/IA) should provide the owner/operator with an entry in the aircraft maintenance record (per 14 CFR 43.9) along with a copy of the STC, which lists the limitations and conditions of the STC. The A&P/IA should also execute an FAA Form 337, per Appendix B of Part 43.
If the aircraft has the seventh seat installed, it must be removed per Piper Aircraft’s instructions before the STC can be installed and the aircraft flown under BasicMed.

Scott Sherer
FAA Master Pilot
Piper Owner Society Forum Moderator and Pipers Author.
Need help? Let me know!

Comments

  • Aeronautix also has an STC for BasicMed. Theirs covers PA-32 AND PA-34.

    Aeronautix BasicMed 6-Place STC Now FREE! - Here's Why

    On June 1, 2018, Aeronautix was issued FAA AML-STC SA01875WI which provides a 6-place occupancy restriction for certain Piper PA-32 and PA-34 aircraft for the purpose of BasicMed compliance. Yesterday, we learned that AOPA has also obtained an FAA STC to accomplish the same thing for Piper PA-32 series aircraft and are offering it for free to their members and for $99 to the rest of the flying public. In light of this announcement, we feel it is only fair that we reimburse those who previously purchased our STC. In addition, we will provide the STC for free to anyone else whether AOPA member or not.
    In the end, we are just happy that those affected by FAA BasicMed restrictions have options to keep them flying!
    For those that have already purchased our STC, please navigate to our Contact page and provides us the name and address you want the re-imbursement check issued to. For the rest of you interested in obtaining our free STC, navigate to our Contact page and provide us with the following information:
    Aircraft Owner Name
    Aircraft Owner Address
    Aircraft Registration Number
    Aircraft Serial Number
    This will allow us to issue you the letter of authorization and other paperwork required by the FAA to utilize the STC.
    Applicable Piper aircraft models include:
    PA-32-260: Cherokee Six 260
    PA-32-300: Cherokee Six 300
    PA-32S-300: Cherokee Six Seaplane
    PA-32R-300: Lance
    PA-32RT-300: Lance II
    PA-32RT-300T: Turbo Lance II
    PA-32R-301 (SP): Saratoga SP
    PA-32R-301 (HP): Saratoga II HP
    PA-32R-301T: Turbo Saratoga SP
    PA-32-301: Saratoga
    PA-32-301T: Turbo Saratoga
    PA-34-200: Seneca
    PA-34-200T: Seneca II
    PA-34-220T: Seneca III

    Scott Sherer
    FAA Master Pilot
    Piper Owner Society Forum Moderator and Pipers Author.
    Need help? Let me know!

  • Good news! Read the article on AOPA last evening. Free from AOPA.

  • Great news! :)

    Scott Sherer
    FAA Master Pilot
    Piper Owner Society Forum Moderator and Pipers Author.
    Need help? Let me know!

Sign In or Register to comment.