Replacing side interior panels in the back

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Localizer
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Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Localizer » Tue May 15, 2018 11:17 pm

Hello, everyone!
I just want to share my experience with replacing side interior panels where the rear seats are.

My DA40 is a 2007. By now the side panels looked pretty worn, so I have asked an upholstery shop to have them re-upholstered. Without looking too closely, I thought it was going to be a simple, straight forward operation - remove panels, have them done, place them back, and be happy.
Very quickly I had a suspicion that I needed to remove many more things in the back. My email to Diamond has confirmed that I needed to remove:
- front seat torsions for the front seat belts (peanuts)
- compartment where the tow-bar is stowed behind rear seats (peanuts)
- rear seat belts (not quite peanuts)
- the whole baggage compartment (peanuts)
- the rear seat assembly (major pain in the neck)

However, while it made me (who mostly watched) and a mechanic (who did all this) sweat a lot (it was above 90F), I need to say that this is a testament to how well the aircraft is build. The tolerances are very tight, each part interlocks with another, making a rigid structure. Bottom line is that I like the airplane a lot!

Now I will have my panels back on Thursday and the whole operation will need to be repeated.
DA40 40.779
RV-10 build is in progress.
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Rich » Wed May 16, 2018 12:04 am

A worthy assessment. Most of the stuff isn't too hard, but the rear seat is a bugger. And you need to fabricate a shield of some kind (heavy cardboard works OK) for the inside of the right rear window as the darn thing is bound and determined to scratch it :x

My rear panels don't look bad, but I've had a heck of a time keeping the right side panel properly attached to the fuselage. This last effort seems to be working but when the weather warms up it might come undone again. :scream:
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Karl » Wed May 16, 2018 3:08 am

DA40 and DA42 passenger seats are the same.

I recommend using the procedure in SI42-147 for easy and hassle free seat removal.
Attachments
SI42-147-Removal-and-Installation-of-Passenger-Seats.pdf
(1.2 MiB) Downloaded 56 times
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Localizer
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Localizer » Wed May 16, 2018 10:24 pm

Thank you for sharing the document, Karl!
However, I'm a bit curious about Diamond's intentions with this document. Having just done that, I can tell that there is no other way to remove the seat other than that.
It is also interesting to see a guy in picture 5. In DA40 there is a right front seat where he stands. Do they fold flat forward in DA42?
To me, the most interesting part is "Remove the mounting hardware of passenger seat acc. to AMM (Chapter 25-10, Maintenance Practices, 6. Remove/Install the Passenger Seat)". This is the part which I had no clue about and I'm glad I asked mechanic to help with that.
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Rich » Wed May 16, 2018 10:44 pm

I doubt this procedure works for my plane. I've tried every possible thing to pull the rear seat out the passenger door, but the construction of the seat pan, upholstery and left fuselage side curvature just refuses to allow it.
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Localizer
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Localizer » Thu May 17, 2018 12:13 am

Rich, lots of cardboard helped, as you have already mentioned, but then it was push and tug.
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby Steve » Thu May 17, 2018 3:10 am

I always take it out the passenger door. I remember the first time I did it I couldn't get it back inside the fuselage. A couple of emails to Diamond resulted in my trimming 0.25 inch off the side of the seat. Now I get it out and back in by myself (although it is easier if I have one of my sons help me). I have never removed the fire extinguisher bracket or moved the inertia reels, although pulling the front seats out is a prerequisite. Mine is out right now - had to get the DG overhauled.
DSCN5044.jpg

I just got the gyro back today, but I won't be able to get it buttoned up before going to FL for 10 days.
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Re: Replacing side interior panels in the back

Postby LTek1 » Thu May 17, 2018 3:10 pm

Huh. I always just yell at it and shove it and sweat all over it and jump up and down on the wings and kick it until it comes out. Works every time.
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Avidyne Entegra (!), Dual GNS430, KAP140

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