PAX-side doors and seat rails

It seems that I’m not the only one who has a pax-side door which is easily closed without the bottom pin being engaged. The result is more noise and wind. Has there been any indication from Cirrus that they recognize the problem? When I brought it up last year, Cirrus said “check pin alignment” and the service center said “there is nothing to adjust”.

Also, the Cessna-like seat rails I think are an accident waiting to happen. Cessna I think got a $400m judgment against them for an accident which was putatively due to sliding seat rails. I’d hate for any Cirrus owner to have an accident due to having their seat slide back during critical phases of flight, or for Cirrus to go out of business because they failed to address the problem.

I recall having an SB done on my plane for the sliding seat rails, but the problem still happens. I also have metal filings on the carpet behind the seats.

My t/o checklist is fairly simple:

flaps to 50% (check visually)
seat locked
pax-side door completely closed

When flying with a passenger (read wife) I always close the right side door from the outside by leaning against it with my knee. I use my door for air conditioning on the way to the runway. She helps by pulling on the top handle on my side while I close the door. This is the only way that I can get both doors to close correctly.

Gordon, the pins on the door are adjustable to some extent. With the handle in the upright position, the pins should extend far enough out of the door so that when you pull (or push) the door closed, the pins snick into the plastic sockets on the door frame. Then rotating the handle will extend the pins fully. If the pins don’t stick out far enough in the rest position, the door will not stay in the closed position to allow it to be locked, if they are too far out, the door will not close unless you rotate the handle backwards. The adjustment for this is inside the door (I gather the pins are connected by cables to the handle mechanism).

Also, it is helpful to lubricate the pins - I use a solid grease stick called “Dri-Lube” which is sold for lubricating (surprise, surprise!) door latches.This makes it easier for them to locate into the sockets, and MUCH easier to lock the door when it is closed, especially when using the outside handle.

I prefer to close the passenger’s door from the pilot seat by reaching over the passenger’s lap and pulling on the handle to ensure the door is closed before locking it. Then reach behind the passenger’s seat and feel the bottom of the door - if it is not closed properly you will feel a gap. The top of the door can be checked visually. The other reason for doing this is to prevent the passenger using the “Cessna Slam” tactic.

There is some variation between airframes, but with the right adjustment and lubrication you should be able to get it to work well. Unfortunately some fiddliness is the price we pay for having doors big enough for anyone to get in and out of. And when they are closed and locked, they are very secure.

Bob: Exactly what I do, except I close the passenger’s door while standing in front of the wing. Using this approach, I’ve never experienced a co-pilot’s door opening. My only problem is with the lame pilot and his door.

The wife’s assistance with the top hand hold is a help, as is leaving the seat all the way back.


Greasing the door pins and their receptacles works wonders. Try it. --Frank

The nylon? pin sockets in the door frames are also adjustable. The hole that the pin fits in is ever so slightly off-center. If your door fits loosely (air gap, whistling at speed, etc.), rotate the socket bushing 90-180 degrees to move the pin hole and thus cause the gasket to compress more when the door is closed. If your door is too hard to close (i.e., its hard to get the pins to make it over the bushing’s sloped front surface and drop into the hole initially), try rotating the bushing as well. Made it easier to get my pax door closed, and got rid of the whistling at speeds over 140 KIAS from my pilot’s side door…

What type of grease did you use?


You can use a spray lube used alot in GA…LPS-II. ‘Not WD-40’. . Vaseline ‘lip balm’ works well too…you don’t need much…just a pinch