rwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2666 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (2 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2995 times:
They can be inspected and repacked, although it requires special facilities. So you can't do it in the field. If a slide is deployed, it will be replaced with one packed and ready to use, while the old slide is shipped to the facility that can repack it. It's not cheap either - I've heard $20+K to repack a typical slide.
320tech From Turks and Caicos Islands, joined May 2004, 491 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (2 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 2969 times:
Quoting B777UA (Thread starter): if the Emergency Slides deploy by an Armed exit being opened, How do they replace them? do they have to get all new ones, or do they deflate the current ones and reuse them?
They do both. Speaking only of A320s (other airplanes will be similar), the slides are mounted on a packboard, which is then bolted to the door. When the slide is armed, the slide's girt bar engages in the floor fittings (which you can see at the threshold of the door, at each corner). When the door is opened with the slide armed, a cable fires the nitrogen bottle that's also mounted on the packboard. The slide drops out and inflates, usually in five or six seconds. The packboard, slide cover, bag, and electrical connections stay with the door, but the slide is attached only to the floor fittings.
To remove the slide, you first deflate it using a large flapper valve mounted on the side of the slide. You then disconnect the electrical connections, and unhook the girt bar from the floor fittings. The packboard is removed by undoing the two bolts at the top of the packboard, and lifting it off the lower hooks.
The slide and its packboard are then rolled up and put into a container for shipment to a repacking facility. The procedure to repack the slide is dozens of pages long. I've never done it, but I have rejected slides that weren't packed properly.
The primary function of the design engineer is to make things difficult for the manufacturer and impossible for the AME.
MD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14565 posts, RR: 62
Reply 3, posted (2 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 2922 times:
Quoting 320tech (Reply 2): The slide and its packboard are then rolled up and put into a container for shipment to a repacking facility. The procedure to repack the slide is dozens of pages long. I've never done it, but I have rejected slides that weren't packed properly.
Usually you´ll also need a vacuum pump to suck the air out of the slide and special compression jigs to hold the folded slide in position on the packboard while the straps are fitted (it is a bit like packing a parachute, only that the slide material is more rigid).
If you change the slide of a 737, it comes in a solid wooden box. Once you open the box, the slide pack starts to expand slowly. You´ll have to work fast to get it into the door slide box before it becomes too big to fit in.