The FAA has issued several "alternate means of compliance" (AMOC) that will allow most T-34s to get back in the air this summer. And there is a special AMOC for airshow performer Julie Clark that will permit her to fly at least some of her performances this season. The T-34 Association worked closely with the FAA to obtain this solution, while AOPA assisted by working with both groups.
The Beechcraft T-34 Mentors, former military training aircraft similar to the Bonanza, were grounded late last year following the third in-flight breakup of a T-34 used in mock aerial combat. (See " AOPA advocates for owners of aging aircraft.")
The new AMOCs will allow most owners to fly their T-34s for up to 60 hours, provided they don't exceed 152 knots or -0/+2.5 Gs, don't fly aerobatics, avoid flight into known moderate or severe turbulence, and complete a surface eddy current inspection. It applies to aircraft that have had wing spar modifications by GAMI, Nogle & Black, or Parks Industries. Owners need to contact the original AMOC holder to get the 60-hour flight extension.
Those aircraft modified by the Saunders Strap AMOC must complete the same surface eddy current inspection as the other AMOCs. However, once the inspection is completed, the airplane is returned to its original flight envelope and has a 300-hour interval between inspections of the center section.
For more information, contact the T-34 Association.
April 22, 2005