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Aircraft battery (Gill versus Concorde)

GILL getting into “sealed” batteries

For some years, Concorde have been the standard replacement for GILL, offering much better performance.

Now GILL are doing what may be a similar part – example for the 242.

Does anybody know if these are actually the same technology as Concorde?

There have been endless debates whether one can change the battery type, for one of the same or very similar dimensions, as a Minor Alteration. You can dig out an A&P or an IA for either camp. I know a US pilot who has an affirmative written reply from an FSDO, and every IA I know personally agrees. I have no idea what the EASA position is on these.

Last Edited by Peter at 15 Jan 12:03
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Had a concorde RG-35AXC in my Mooney loved it.. going to install the same in the Beech.


We (most GA people) use Gill.. recomended replacement 18 months..
I have tried to get several batteries out of spec replaced on warranty without success…
Worst case was when the whole positive battery (few months old) terminal came of the battery during reinstallation…
I was the one putting it back and torquing the “nut” and “snap” the pole came of without warning.
I had some email conversation (possible Airworthiness Directive poor quality or manufacturing errors/faults) but no success.

And I no longer do any reports beacuse that takes to much time.. and I never get any reasonable replies. Ok – so I misstankenly torqued the nut to hard – no more discussion. Stangley enough, I was able to use a wrench and torque the negative pole nut so it would become totaly “deformed”… then I did a test for how much torque it required to pull the nevgative pole of (at the base) and that was a lot…

Replaced my Gill with a Concorde RG380E44 and the turbine first start temp is now excellent.


We (most GA people) use Gill.. recomended replacement 18 months..

18 months for a battery costing a few hundred quid is completely outrageous.

I had one Gill (which failed suddenly after 4 years, leaving me stranded in France and paying €1500 for an incorrectly diagnosed starter motor replacement) and two Concordes, the first of which lasted 6 years (never failed to drive the high power Skytec starter but eventually failed the load test, and is now at work powering a UPS) and the second is still in the plane.

I think Gill are in business because they got certified on a lot of type certificates over many years. They are playing on the widespread ignorance and unwillingness to read the FAA “Minor Alteration” wording by A&Ps and IAs. Only today I read a discussion by supposedly intelligent people (on a members-only type specific US forum) saying they need an STC to install a different battery and would they be willing to put some money together to fund it

I spoke to Concorde at Friedrichshafen last year about this issue and they agreed – it is apparently a daily struggle for them. STCs are so often produced for marketing reasons.

Just my opinion

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Gill are rubbish. Known for being unreliable with meridians and other PA-46s…

Last Edited by JasonC at 17 Jan 20:41
EGTK Oxford

I have gone over to Concord following the same sort of problems reported above and had no problems with my three American aircraft.

My Robin uses a French car battery and seems to outperform all the aircraft battery’s !

I think the traditional flooded cell lead acid Gills are not bad. My previous lasted 6 years and was still cranking fine at -20C in winter but I replaced it before a longer trip to be on the safe side after it failed my capacity test. Current one is the same flooded cell Gill (because the previous owner of the plane had it on the shelf for 5 years and gifted it to me). I would probably buy a sealed Concorde although the flooded cell batteries are generally fine and only need a fillup once a year.

I have handpropped my aircraft many times and I have an external power connector and there should always be a way to find two cars to daisy chain so I am not overly concerned with the battery going bad.

Whether the CTEK trickle charger I have always connected does any good for the battery’s life expectancy, the experts disagree. At least it always gives me a fully charged battery and it saved me more than once when I forgot to turn off something in the cabin.

PS: The Gill booth at Friedrichshafen was a kind of surrealistic experienced last year. Two elderly guys well in the retirement age making weird statements about batteries and life in general. I would not have bought their batteries after meeting them

Last Edited by achimha at 19 Jan 11:03

Two elderly guys well in the retirement age making weird statements about batteries and life in general. I would not have bought their batteries after meeting them

why not ? If they carry Gills in their pacemakers

EDxx, Germany

We had a Gill battery on the Auster. It lasted only a bit more than 18 months. Still holds charge perfectly well but it’s as if its internal resistance has shot up and it just can’t deliver anything like enough amps to turn the starter (especially when the engine’s hot).

Fortunately since Austers became a permit aircraft we’re no longer limited to this style of battery.

Andreas IOM
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