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Any interest in a GFC500 STC for a Robin DR400?

No, I don’t develop STCs. I am just interested and help where I am able.

Last Edited by at 22 Feb 08:20

I am just interested and help where I am able.

No DR400 so far, but I am on it.

We do allow commercial posters provided they participate generally etc, and post under their real business identity (or at least say what their job is, for example). To allow otherwise would undermine the integrity of the forum because one would have people recommending some product or service from which they make money. We have already had several of these on EuroGA.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

The company I am a director of is a Garmin agency and there is nothing more I would like than a Garmin autopilot in my DR400 but the development of the STC must wash its face financially. I don’t think there is the market for it as most of the UK’s DR400 owners usualy spent an hour at the most in the air , the result of this is little demand for autoflight a fact that is not helped by the fact the aircraft is a delight to fly.

The result of this is as most of my long range flying is done with one person investing in teaching her to hold hight and heading is likely to be the most cost effective option.

If there are people reading this forum and would put money up front for a DR400 autopilot STC please contact me, I would be delighted to be proved wrong.

Hi A_and _C
What kind of money are we talking about?

Eshott / Newcastle, United Kingdom

I have no idea , I would talk to wigglyamp and ask his opinion as he has done this sort of thing before.

We are also looking at setting up a design organisation that we would need for this to get this done, as for the cost I would guess about £30k for the paperwork for the STC.

As you say not cheap, it’s a shame there are not more of these aircraft in use which would make the likely numbers wanting to install an autopilot more of an attractive proposition to the likes of Garmin. I know the manufacturers of Stec have changed a few times over the years but I would have thought they might have developed something to compete with the current Garmin / Trio / Trutrak stuff. One thing that’s slightly puzzling, if the business case for developing an STC for the GFC500 is not clear why did Stec bother to do it for their autopilot?

Eshott / Newcastle, United Kingdom


The S tech autopilot was a factory fit and as they are the design authority for the aircraft they can do this without writing an STC.

As the factory is well aware of the cost and difficulty of getting an STC they charge a fortune to retro fit autopilots and will only do it at the factory.

Perhaps if the factory has not pitched the costs of fitting an autopilot at a costs at a price the market could afford we would not be having this conversation and they would be selling more autopilots..

I get the picture now. No doubt the factory fit price will be ridiculous. It would be good to think Garmin would put the DR400 on their list ( not looking likely ). Maybe one of the smaller companies like Trutrack or Trio might take a punt.
I share your frustration about getting enough people interested and willing to contribute to sort an STC out.

Eshott / Newcastle, United Kingdom

@A_and_C when Garmin is openly asking for owners to volunteer their airplane for flight testing, do you happen to know if this is US-only, or the offer is also valid for Europe-based EASA aircrafts?

Last Edited by Arne at 26 Feb 23:20
ESMK, Sweden

@Arne: I guess it doesn’t matter with all the relevant exchange treaties in place.

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