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Is there anyone manufacturing new DME devices for small GA planes? (and GPS substitution)

It seems that people on the web are only selling reconditioned/ secondhand DME devices. Mostly KN64s / KN62s. Is that it? Are they no longer manufactured?

There will come a time when I’ll be trading out my KNS80 to make some panel space and will then need a DME device. Will I have to hunt in the used parts bin?

(I know they are not required for IFR flight in the USA – presumably that’s at the heart of the supply problem.)

I have searched on here for the answer but couldn’t find it.

Howard

Flying a TB20 out of EGTR
Elstree (EGTR), United Kingdom

Honeywell still make the KN62A panel-mount and KN63 remote-mount DMEs.

Avionics geek.
Fairoaks. EGTF

In the USA DME can if flying below FL180 be replaced by GPS so a lot of used units are coming onto the market.

Both the KN62a & KN63 are compatable with most of the Garmin kit and I guess that Garmin think that they could not economicaly build a better DME so why bother.

No doubt we will get a bunch of posts telling us that you can use GPS distance instead of DME distance for IFR approaches but IMO this idea is just a CFIT in the making…………….. my life is worth more than the money I might save not fitting a DME and despite my aircraft having two GTN650’s I am more than happy to have paid for a KN63.

Last Edited by A_and_C at 29 Nov 23:20

Thank you.

Flying a TB20 out of EGTR
Elstree (EGTR), United Kingdom

There don’t appear to have been any new entries into the DME business for quite some years.

The KN63 DME is probably the best. It uses the KDI572 remote indicator which makes it really nice in the panel (the box itself is remotely mounted) but this solution is not dirt cheap… the KDI572 alone costs thousands!

No doubt we will get a bunch of posts telling us that you can use GPS distance instead of DME distance for IFR approaches but IMO this idea is just a CFIT in the making…………….. my life is worth more than the money I might save not fitting a DME and despite my aircraft having two GTN650’s I am more than happy to have paid for a KN63.

I agree; Europe is anyway full of IAPs which need a DME.

I know they are not required for IFR flight in the USA – presumably that’s at the heart of the supply problem

@NCyankee is the expert on this but I don’t think that is the whole story when it comes to required alternates to a GPS IAP. I believe that requirement is widely disregarded however and one argument I read is that once you are flying to your alternate that becomes your destination so the alternate IAP equipment requirement is nonsense

However your second part is definitely the reason for the low demand. For example Cirruses have mostly shipped without a DME and consequently most of the European SR22 fleet has been illegal for IFR (but surprisingly not even the Germans have busted anyone for it)

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

A_and_C wrote:

In the USA DME can if flying below FL180 be replaced by GPS so a lot of used units are coming onto the market.

Both the KN62a & KN63 are compatable with most of the Garmin kit and I guess that Garmin think that they could not economicaly build a better DME so why bother.

No doubt we will get a bunch of posts telling us that you can use GPS distance instead of DME distance for IFR approaches but IMO this idea is just a CFIT in the making…………….. my life is worth more than the money I might save not fitting a DME and despite my aircraft having two GTN650’s

So, if using GPS for a DME fix is:

a) Extremely prevalent and/or common
AND
b)Extremely dangerous (“CFIT in the making”),

then can you please point us to the DATA that supports this opinion ?

FAA A&P/IA
LFPN

Many previous threads… start with this one

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

Many previous threads… start with this one

That’s not data Peter, that’s self-serving anecdotal examples .

Pilots will continue to F-up on approachs and make fatal mistakes.

The question here is quite simple: If using the GPS for a DME fix is so wide-spread (and legal) in the US, are there any statistics that show that this practice has added risk ?

Last Edited by at 30 Nov 08:27
FAA A&P/IA
LFPN

The main risk of using GPS for DME is not the difference between slanted and horizontal distance but rather measuring the GPS distance from the wrong point. Most GPS devices indicate only the distance to the next waypoint, while the DME may be up to 3-4 waypoints away, or not in the flight plan at all, or, worse yet, not even in the database.

LKBU near Prague, Czech Republic

Usually the waypoint you need for DME=0 on a GPS is not in the database at all…….. and if it is, you need to be pretty smart to find it.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
164 Posts
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