Customer Demonstration Flights
A special flight permit may be used when conducting customer demonstration flights of a new production aircraft.
This permit is normally issued only for the purpose of customer demonstration. However, customer demonstration may be listed in block A of the special airworthiness certificate FAA Form 8130-7 along with production flight testing, but will not be issued in conjunction with any other special flight permit purposes.
When both flight purposes are listed in block A of Form 8130-7, the aircraft’s operating limitations will clearly state that no customer demonstration flights are allowed until the aircraft has satisfactorily completed its production flight tests.
NOTE: The meaning of the word “customer” for the purpose of this airworthiness certificate means any person or organization judged by the manufacturer to be an acknowledged or potential aircraft purchaser.
The special flight permit will be issued when the following conditions are met:
- The new production aircraft was produced under a Production Certificate (PC) or Type Certificate (TC) only.
- The PC/TC holder has satisfactorily completed production flight tests. Completion of production flight tests indicates acceptance by the production flight test pilot and no further flight tests are required or planned.
Application and Issuance
A letter from the manufacturer must accompany the application describing the flights to be made if sufficient information cannot be included on the application.
Upon receipt of a properly executed application, the issuing FAA representative will inspect the aircraft and prescribe the operating limitations as deemed necessary for safe operation.
The flight area(s) also will be listed on the operating limitations. Special flight permits may be issued only for the period needed to complete the flights, usually not to exceed 90 days.
If the Manufacturing Inspection District Office (MIDO) determines that the PC holder has procedures in place to safeguard the storage and issuance of special flight permits, permits that are transferable from one aircraft to another may be issued.
It is still necessary to prescribe operating limitations as deemed necessary for safe operation. The expiration date shown on Form 8130-7 and the associated limitations will not exceed 12 months from the date of issuance. The permits issued in this manner will be serialized so as to differentiate them from any production flight permits which may have been issued. The number of special flight permits for conducting customer demonstration flights issued to a manufacturer will be limited to actual need.
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