After several mechanical checks on my Socata TB20, I found that a yoke play of about 1cm is due to a defective gimbal joint that transmits movement from the yokes to the ailerons.
The part number is listed as Z00.N7422010002 – SADEX GIMBAL-JOINT 10996AS (part 060 in the attached diagram). I found it online listed for about 150 USD on a website from 2001. I emailed the only European Socata supplier I know and to my surprise they said the price at the manufacturer is about 1,300 EUR!!! just for a small piece of metal of about 3 cm… Add the shipping and installation costs and you can easily go over 2,000 EUR.
I initially thought it would be a great idea to replace all the similar gimbal joints that can be found inside the aircraft in several places to be sure there is no play on the ailerons or horizontal stabilizer. However, at these prices I might just wait for a while…
I wonder if this it’s a normal price (inflated 10 times in the past decade) or my supplier is just a big scam. I tried to find any info about the ‘10996AS’ or ‘SADEX’ online with no results. I know there aren’t too many TB20s out there, but any help in finding a good supplier/normal price would be appreciated.
SADEX indeed googles to nothing useful. It could be an old French company which is long gone; anything more than about 20 years old is mostly not on the internet. A lot of Socata parts came from French companies which did little or no export, some never had websites (and google is bad for French company websites; you need a search done from France) and which are mostly gone.
Also a lot of their parts come from firms in the ULM or homebuilt-part sphere which Socata generate EASA-1 forms for using their 145 approval; one example is the brake master cylinders. And a lot come from CNC firms which make custom parts for anybody, so the manufacturer name can never be discovered.
I have this part which was extracted, in perfect condition and later NDTd anyway, from a gear up landed TB10, from the 1980s but which flew only a few hundred hours, and which is the old style upper universal joint
On it I see HORSTMAN SADEX (or HORSTMANN SADEX – there is a screw hole immediately after the “N”). That also googles to nothing useful.
I recall a conversation with an A&P 2-3 years ago regarding a similar part for a Piper and it was then about £700, with the Socata one about £1000. That is fairly normal. And Socata have been increasing their prices 10-20% every year. That is why it is imperative to look after the aircraft, with good lubrication. Unfortunately this UJ is not readily visible so in most TBs never gets any lube. So you might need to take the hit on that, and make sure the rest gets greased.
These were the subject of an AD, IIRC, c. 2003. Worth checking that…
Socata prices vary from very reasonable to crazy expensive depending on what part it is and to some extend what dealer you use.. I have replaced an airspeed indicator on my TB21 which was same price through socata as similar united instrument models sold elsewhere. Also I had to replace one of the two bolts holding in the stabilator due to play and that little bolt was 170 EUR if I recall correctly without the nut off course which was another 100 or so. Totally insane. The same bolt for my experimental RV8 would have been $10 at the most. Overall the TB designs are well thought through and if taken good care of will not require a lot of repair.
I don’t think I know if this is of any help but there used to be a factory called Horstmann at a place called the la Sadex at Pressins. A couple of the old guys here seem to think it got swallowed up by Wassmer or Issoire aviation. Issoire is still going and making planes. I’ll try to find out more if it would be of use.
I reckon that is exactly the one, gallois! Makes perfect sense; in the old days of great engineering (18-20th century) it was normal to have the place name on the product. This is an example of a nameplate from the same sort of era – the Titanic
Whether Issoire still make these universal joints is another matter, and if they do they will prob99 not talk to anyone asking about a Socata product, but it is worth a try.