Jet Panels Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
The information in this FAQ has been checked for accuracy. We do strongly recommend that you contact us
for application specific information. The information contained herein is intended to provide generalized
answers suitable for the majority of Jet Panels customers, and may not reflect your particular aircraft.
- Do you actually install the panel or just manufacture it?
Right now we manufacture the panels only. We will coordinate with you and your preferred avionics shop during the
design process to manufacture the panel to your specs and ship it out to you. The result is a panel can be installed
quickly with little (if any) processing saving you on labor costs and delivering aesthetically pleasing results.
- What benefit does a floating panel (i.e. D'Shannon or Aviation Research) provide and is it really necessary?
Floating panels were at one time thought to be a great asset in extending the life of avionics related products. The
thought was that vibration was the main deterrent to long life. It turns out that while vibration is a factor, the
floating panel still transmits much of the vibration to the instruments, and often there was additional maintenance
required to service the mounts for the floating panel. Recent trends have shown that securing the instrument panel
to the rigid framework behind it is actually a much better method.
- How long does it take you to manufacture the panel from time of order?
The amount of time for manufacture can vary. Your finished product can typically be produced in as little as 4 working
days. For emergencies, the process can be completed and returned to you in as little as 48 hours, depending on the
aircraft, whether you can supply an accurate CAD file for our staff engineers to work from and the complexity of your
requirements. Note that expedited orders are subject to additional fees.
- Does your panel replace the subpanel on typical aircraft?
Lower sub-panels typically contain switches, circuit breakers, and controls for heating, ventilation, throttle, and mixture.
Creating a sub-panel is possible, but sub-panels are typically more difficult to remove. Please inspect your aircraft carefully
to determine if there are any compound curves or radii that would need to be created. If possible, please take some high-resolution
digital photographs (at least 1 MP resolution) of your aircraft panel so that we can review it from our location.
- Is this considered an "owner produced part" or do you have a pre-approved STC for the panel?
Since your aircraft was most likely produced under FAR part 23 or 25, your maintenance manual should give you guidance regarding
replacing any aluminum portion of the aircraft. As an example, if the external skin, a rib, or even a firewall was damaged on
your aircraft, any maintenance shop would be able to easily "remove and replace" the damaged aluminum or part.
The logbook entry "sign off" should include the scope and location of the work performed, and that the work was produced in
accordance with (IAW) the manufacturer's maintenance manual, and AC 43.13 1B and 2A . This FAA Advisory Circular (AC) is a
very large and comprehensive book that gives specific guidance to shops and maintenance personnel ensuring that work like this
is "equal to the original structure" (reference AC 43.13(B) pgs 4-50 ¶. b. and c. for more information).
In the case of the new instrument panel, the old metal panel that formerly held your flight instruments is being removed and
replaced with the exact same material, and in the exact same manner. The only significant difference between the two examples
is the reason for the removal. In the former example, the reason was for necessity because of damage or a need to repair. In
the case of the all-new metal panel, the reason becomes purely aesthetic, but the same structural quality control rules still
Therefore, there is no need for this new piece of metal panel to be a PMA part, or for STC paperwork to exist. There is not
even a legal need for an FAA form 337 as the aircraft was not changed in any way. Your logbook entry from the avionics shop
or mechanic will simply state:
"Removed and replaced existing metal (aluminum 2024 T3) pilot and copilot panels and replaced with same. All work performed
IAW the structural repair manual and AC43.13 1B End."
If the shop or maintenance person installing the new panels feels more comfortable, an FAA form 337 can be filled out and
filed with the FAA as a major alteration, even though there is typically nothing being "altered" or "repaired." in this
process. You may also want to check with your local FAA FSDO for guidance on their requirements.
- What is the approximate price for your aircraft panels?
The prices vary depending on the aircraft, the requirements, the thickness of the material, and whether you need two, three,
or four separate panels, or an all new "one piece" all-metal panel. Pricing starts at $750 for basic stock half-panels, and
full panels start at around $1,500.
- What process are you using to create these panels?
We can't tell you that. After five years of research and development and hundreds of thousands of dollars of investment, we
hope you'll appreciate our desire to keep our trade secret a secret. What we can tell you is that our process does not use
lasers, water jet, plasma, CNC milling. Our process is more efficient and does not involve intense thermal conditions that
would compromise the integrity of the alclad finish or the alloy itself.
- I have a certain make/model aircraft - what can you provide?
Our database includes over 375 aircraft panel types and 1,350 instruments. We're capable of producing stock panels site-unseen
for most common aircraft. Most of our customers are people who want to rearrange their avionics, or even upgrade to new avionics
suites. For those customers, we start with the generic CAD files from our database, and then include the arrangements to your
specifications. If you have a panel that is already modified or is not in our database, you will need to provide precise
measurements of the sub-panel including the location of existing fasteners and a description of your desired layout including a
sketch. Alternatively, if you already have panel or panel prototype in process, you can send us the panel itself or a 1:1 scale
tracing of the panel.
After we have completed your layout, we'll provide you with a full size template that can be used to test the fit in the cockpit.
Any changes that need to be made are incorporated into the CAD file. Once you're satisfied, our technicians will manufacture your
panel and ship it out to you or your avionics shop of choice. We'll also retain the CAD files in our archives in case you ever
need to do an additional avionics upgrade.
- What are these panels made of?
Our panels are made from aircraft grade T3 2024 Aluminum in .080" (2.03mm) and 0.125" (3.175mm) thicknesses. All panels are
alclad coated, and conform to the following specifications: ASTM B209, AMS 4041, AMSQQA25015.
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