User avatar
Faro
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 1:08 am

Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 3:17 pm

Water, coffee, Coke, etc; this must be a common mishap...just wondering whether the avionics boxes on the center pedestals are spill-proof.

Faro
The chalice not my son
 
tom355uk
Posts: 168
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:34 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 3:36 pm

In 1985, a Yemen Alyemeda Airlines 707 was nearly lost after water was spilt on the pedestal at FL230. The trim wheel started to rotate rapidly of its own accord, and severe pitch oscillations followed. Control was regained at just 1,000 feet, and an emergency landing was carried out at Aden. 3 Passengers were killed.

The only incident I know of, but there may be more.
on Twitter @tombeckett2285
 
aviopic
Posts: 2423
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 7:52 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 4:16 pm

Quoting faro (Thread starter):
Water, coffee, Coke, etc; this must be a common mishap...just wondering whether the avionics boxes on the center pedestals are spill-proof.

It is very very common, in fact I see it every day right in front of me.
We even have SB's to seal off certain components located in the pedestal.
The main reason is probably that a right handed Captain doesn't use the cup holder which is on his left side and thus he puts his cup on the pedestal, same story for a left handed F/O.
The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
 
tdscanuck
Posts: 8572
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:25 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 4:46 pm

Quoting faro (Thread starter):
wondering whether the avionics boxes on the center pedestals are spill-proof.

From tom355uk's story, I guess they weren't always, but they certainly are now.

Tom.
 
rwessel
Posts: 2448
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:47 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 5:15 pm

That even turned into a movie plot... "Fate is the Hunter.”
 
aviopic
Posts: 2423
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 7:52 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:12 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 3):
From tom355uk's story, I guess they weren't always, but they certainly are now.

Not sure whether all LRU's are spill proof these days.
For todays aircraft it is not such a big problem anyway as most if not all pedestal located LRU's are designed to run on the emergency bus(28V) in case of trouble and on a DC bus(28V) in normal situations.
You can't cause a 28V circuit to short with water(nor coffee) and so basically nothing should happen, it remains messy though.

In the 707 days 115V might still have been around in the pedestal, not sure though.
The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
 
tdscanuck
Posts: 8572
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:25 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:59 pm

Quoting Aviopic (Reply 5):
Not sure whether all LRU's are spill proof these days.

Not all LRU's are waterproof...that's why you find drip trays in the EE bays. But everything in the aisle stand should be spill proof, either by low voltage or sealing.

Tom.
 
aviopic
Posts: 2423
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 7:52 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sat Oct 02, 2010 8:12 pm

Quoting tdscanuck (Reply 6):
Not all LRU's are waterproof

I meant in the pedestal of course, not all LRU's.  
The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
 
User avatar
Faro
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 1:08 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sun Oct 03, 2010 9:35 am

By the way, are all those avionics control boxes still metallic? From certain pix in the database, it sometimes seems like they're made of some sort of ruggedised plastic.

Faro
The chalice not my son
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sun Oct 03, 2010 2:59 pm

http://www1.airliners.net/aviation-forums/tech_ops/read.main/86592/

Even Tea/coffee/sugar spills are a problem on the centre pedestal of most aircraft.[B737/757].
As crew tend to rest the glass on it due flat surface.

regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
charlienorth
Posts: 1051
Joined: Sat Jun 10, 2006 6:24 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sun Oct 03, 2010 9:11 pm

Over time spills like this eventually jam up the buttons on the Audio Control panels and the Radio management panels
Work hard fly right..don't understand it
 
mrskyguy
Posts: 309
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 7:13 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:28 am

I can speak from personal hands-on experience that water-proofing these avionics is extremely expensive to the airlines, but not impossible. Most of the pedestal avionics are designed to mitigate fluid migration, with the exception of the printers. We are seeing modifications to these components all the time (especially the MCDUs) in the shop for fluid spills.. some of these components can cost as much as $400K ea USD to replace. Pilots are always looking for a place to put drinks, and the flattest non-slippery surface usually wins.

The printers on the other hand require special design to keep FOD and liquids out of the mechanisms, purely by design. We've seen food, mold, crumbs, fluids (all kinds.. yuck), paper clips, pens, pencils, fingernail clippings, hair, dirt, dust, oil, and quite a few smelly undetermined things too. While printers are not directly related to safe flight, they do contribute to efficiency and can be rather helpful for ACARS and other communications.

It's pretty hard to build avionics that can function while also protecting themselves from the kids up front.   
"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
 
411A
Posts: 1788
Joined: Mon Nov 12, 2001 10:34 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:36 am

Quoting Aviopic (Reply 5):
In the 707 days 115V might still have been around in the pedestal, not sure though.

One item only...pitch trim cutout switches, on the right hand side.
 
etherealsky
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:13 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 4:34 am

Perhaps airlines should make sippy cups standard-issue equipment for flight crews.  
.
"And that's why you always leave a note..."
 
mrskyguy
Posts: 309
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 7:13 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 6:31 am

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 13):
Perhaps airlines should make sippy cups standard-issue equipment for flight crews.  

You'd be surprised how many times I've seen and heard similar suggestions during very high-level meetings on the subject.  
"The strength of the turbulence is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee." -- Gunter's 2nd Law of Air
 
User avatar
Faro
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 1:08 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 8:33 am

Quoting 411A (Reply 12):
Quoting Aviopic (Reply 5):
In the 707 days 115V might still have been around in the pedestal, not sure though.

One item only...pitch trim cutout switches, on the right hand side

Probably explains this:

Quoting tom355uk (Reply 1):
In 1985, a Yemen Alyemeda Airlines 707 was nearly lost after water was spilt on the pedestal at FL230. The trim wheel started to rotate rapidly of its own accord, and severe pitch oscillations followed. Control was regained at just 1,000 feet, and an emergency landing was carried out at Aden. 3 Passengers were killed.

The only incident I know of, but there may be more.
The chalice not my son
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17053
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:25 am

Lately, I've been working with private customers on their computer woes. A startling amount of issues can be solved with a simple clean. Turning a housewife's keyboard upside down in front of her produces an always predictable startled expression. Blowing out the fan on a laptop reveals all the dust inside, and reduces noise and lock-ups significantly.

Any environment with people around is inevitably dirty. Bits of skin, hair, dried lotion fragments, crumbs and other food spills, drinks, sugared drinks. It all contributes. Doesn't take an actual spill.

I'm wondering about plastic film. Do manufacturers use a thin layer over buttons and such? It would both water/dust-proof and help with cleaning. Obviously this won't work on things like flap handle tracks but on FMC and such.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:23 am

Quoting charlienorth (Reply 10):

Over time spills like this eventually jam up the buttons on the Audio Control panels and the Radio management panels

Probably Electrical shortings would be a bigger concern....
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
mandala499
Posts: 6458
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2001 8:47 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:34 am

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 13):
Perhaps airlines should make sippy cups standard-issue equipment for flight crews.

Actually... some crews use that or something similar!
Seen it with my own eyes!   
"Keep maintenance costs under control! Don't spill!"
Some companies here use those cup covers on the drinks... it doesn't stop a spill when it gets knocked over... but reduces "motion spills"...

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:38 am

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 18):

Actually... some crews use that or something similar!

Are those common & reused or each crew has their own?.
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
mandala499
Posts: 6458
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2001 8:47 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:37 am

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 19):
Are those common & reused or each crew has their own?.

On the ones I've seen...
each crew has their own...

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
musang
Posts: 788
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2001 4:11 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:35 pm

About a year ago the F/O caught his drink on the edge of the centre console as he pulled it out of the holder (which would be by his left leg, on his side of the console). There was only a cm or two left in it, but of course it spilt all over the front right corner, mainly the VHF Com 2 panel.

Pretty funny in that we both froze, looking at it motionless and in shock for a second like deer in the headlights, then simultaneously (a) I reached to the discarded meal trays on the jumpseat for some napkins, whilst (b) my ingenious and selfless colleague unfastened his lap strap, rose out of his seat, swivelled, and sat on the console to absorb as much cold coffee as possible into the seat of his pants!

Having averted tragedy, we then got some paper towels and took care of it properly, and there was no problem. Engineers met us on arrival and we ended up doing another two sectors. (737 classic).

Regards - musang
 
SAAFNAV
Posts: 336
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 5:41 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 01, 2010 5:58 pm

Quoting musang (Reply 21):

That's has got to be the funniest, most quick thinking act I've heard of! Nicely done!  

Regards,

Erich
On-board Direction Consultant
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:00 pm

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 20):

On the ones I've seen...
each crew has their own...

Thankfully  
Quoting musang (Reply 21):
my ingenious and selfless colleague unfastened his lap strap, rose out of his seat, swivelled, and sat on the console to absorb as much cold coffee as possible into the seat of his pants!

Its called rapid response.
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
User avatar
exFWAOONW
Posts: 362
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 10:32 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Thu Dec 09, 2010 9:32 pm

Quoting musang (Reply 21):
About a year ago the F/O caught his drink on the edge of the centre console as he pulled it out of the holder (which would be by his left leg, on his side of the console). There was only a cm or two left in it, but of course it spilt all over the front right corner, mainly the VHF Com 2 panel.

In the distance recesses of my brain, I remember reading a company memo directing flight crews to not move/handle a cup with liquid in it over the console. They wanted crews to swing their cups clear of the center console at all times.
Is just me, or is flying not as much fun anymore?
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sun Dec 12, 2010 8:28 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 24):
I remember reading a company memo directing flight crews to not move/handle a cup with liquid in it over the console.

Yup read something like that in a company internal bulletin some place too.Something like keeping the Beverages to the Outboard of the seats.
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
musang
Posts: 788
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2001 4:11 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Sun Dec 12, 2010 10:28 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 24):
In the distance recesses of my brain, I remember reading a company memo directing flight crews to not move/handle a cup with liquid in it over the console. They wanted crews to swing their cups clear of the center console at all times.
Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 25):
Yup read something like that in a company internal bulletin some place too.Something like keeping the Beverages to the Outboard of the seats.

We have all those rules also, as do most carriers. Might work in a wide flight deck but imagine how difficult that is in a 737, DC-9, 146, ATR etc. I suppose spillages into the pilots' briefcases or onto the various manuals that live down there would be preferable, but the other risk is spilling a drink down a couple of hundred circuit breakers.

The cabin crew are good at trying to observe the rule, and we usually get round it by "taking control" of the drink behind the centre console, thus absolving the c/c of responsibility.

Another rule - not allowed to have open sachets of sugar in the flight deck. Apparently its bad news if it gets in the electronics. Or the ACARS printer.

Regards - musang
 
lowrider
Posts: 2542
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:09 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Dec 13, 2010 12:48 am

Our company encourages crews to pass drinks forward on the outboard side, away from all the expensive stuff in the middle, that way if you drop it, it only goes into your flight bag. A spill on the center console will earn you a personal phone call from the chief pilot.

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 13):
Perhaps airlines should make sippy cups standard-issue equipment for flight crews

I actually do carry a self closing insulated coffee mug with me. I like my coffee, but don't want to be the one to cause a diversion due to a spill.
Proud OOTSK member
 
etherealsky
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:13 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Dec 13, 2010 2:57 am

Quoting Lowrider (Reply 27):
I like my coffee, but don't want to be the one to cause a diversion due to a spill.

I suppose it would be hard to live something like that down if it ever happened   
"And that's why you always leave a note..."
 
lowrider
Posts: 2542
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:09 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Dec 13, 2010 6:59 am

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 28):
I suppose it would be hard to live something like that down if it ever happened

We can be pretty brutal over those sorts of mistakes. Often the best way to ensure that something like this never happens again is to broadcast to the pilot group that it happened once.
Proud OOTSK member
 
soon7x7
Posts: 2267
Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 10:51 am

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Dec 15, 2010 11:47 pm

When you disassemble the face plates from the avionics unit you will find "o" ring type seals and membranes that ward off moisture. The display window frames/ lenses, while fairly scuzzy, are dry on the inside.
 
User avatar
HAWK21M
Posts: 29867
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2001 10:05 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:40 am

Quoting musang (Reply 26):
nother rule - not allowed to have open sachets of sugar in the flight deck. Apparently its bad news if it gets in the electronics. Or the ACARS printer.

Its Cubes only permitted for that very reason.
regds
MEL.
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
User avatar
Plainplane
Posts: 625
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:50 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Wed Jan 05, 2011 5:57 pm

This happened recently, the 777 operating UA940 from Chicago to Frankfurt was diverted to Toronto after the pilot's coffee was spilled on the center console.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5heKwJ1X53VqjvFKmDkBw0JjvwIbw?docId=cdb73d24071947328fec380e45f5bb4f

[Edited 2011-01-05 10:56:51]
 
Viscount724
Posts: 18838
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:32 pm

RE: Liquid Spills On The Pedestal Avionics

Thu Jan 06, 2011 2:17 am

Quoting Plainplane (Reply 32):
This happened recently, the 777 operating UA940 from Chicago to Frankfurt was diverted to Toronto after the pilot's coffee was spilled on the center console.

Current thread in the Civil Aviation forum on that incident a couple of days ago.
United B777 At YYZ (by longhauler Jan 4 2011 in Civil Aviation).

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests