Shields, plugs, and covers

I get my SR22 the week of May 20th and am requesting PIREPs about Sun-Shields, Cowl-Plugs, and Cabin Covers (am looking for updates/additions to previous posts). My SR22 will live in a hangar at home, but I will want to shield or cover it while parked outdoors on my trips away from home. So…

  1. Has Cirrus yet clarified their contradictory statements about using sunshields (Response Team?)?

1a. For those using sunshields, what brands (Kennon, Bruce, Sporty’s etc.) have you used and with what success? Do they fit easily without Velcro? Other comments?

  1. Anything unusual about putting cowl-plugs into an SR22? Any brand recommendations?

  2. Can anyone compare the quality and fit of cabin covers from…
    BruceÂ’s
    Ground Tech (a.k.a. Planecover.com)
    Custom Cabin Covers (very highly recommended by Grumman owners)

Thanks in advance.

Marty,

We’ve been very happy with the fit and workmanship of our Bruce’s cover, cowl plugs, and pitot tube cover.

You’ll have a blast in Duluth! Have a great time (and try the microbrews at Fitger’s down by Lake Superior).

Cheers,
Roger

We have the Kennon sunshields and find they fit very well without velcro. They are lightweight and easy to install.

I just picked up my 22 last week. What an airplane!

The Cirrus customer rep is recommending covers over shields. I challenged him on this with concern about sand (Florida) getting between the cover and glass. He said I had a good point so my sense is that it is not a strong recommendation. I decided on a Kennon shield due to heat, sand and salt air for my trips to Florida.

Joe

In reply to:


  1. Has Cirrus yet clarified their contradictory statements about using sunshields (Response Team?)?

In reply to:


1a. For those using sunshields, what brands (Kennon, Bruce, Sporty’s etc.) have you used and with what success? Do they fit easily without Velcro? Other comments?


In reply to:


  1. Anything unusual about putting cowl-plugs into an SR22? Any brand recommendations?

In reply to:


  1. Can anyone compare the quality and fit of cabin covers from…
    BruceÂ’s
    Ground Tech (a.k.a. Planecover.com)
    Custom Cabin Covers (very highly recommended by Grumman owners)

Marty,
My answers to your questions, one by one:
Yes and no - there is no ideal solution, so all the company can do is warn us of the potential problems with each. In different ways, it’s bad to either (a) not protect the airplane, (b) use a cover, or © use reflective sunshields. We have to choose the “least bad” approach in each situation.
At this point, I’ll take off my “Response Team” hat – the comments below are strictly my personal opinion.
I use Kennon sunshields. (I also have Bruce’s cover – more below)
Advantages:
They are lighter than a cover;
I find them quicker and easier to “deploy”, esp. solo, in wind;
They hide the inside of the airplane better (more secure);
Disadvantages:
Over time, they can cause “feather scratches” on the windows if they touch them;
Can overheat the windows if they don’t touch them (air gap should be minimized);
Over time, they fit less well (corners curl).
I use Bruce’s. They just work… no problems. Love the little flags to make them obvious from the cockpit.
Bruce’s cover fits perfectly; my purchasing experience was first-rate.
Advantages:
Probably does the best job of protecting the interior.
Disadvantages:
Comparatively heavy;
A pain to deal with in rain, esp. at large airports*;
Can scratch surfaces if any dust/dirt/grit gets trapped - sometimes inevitable.
*It took me only one experience in wind-driven rain, with no help, to convince me that this was not an ideal solution. At larger airports, I find that a fine black sooty residue (from the jets) gets trapped under the cover, and it’s really messy when it gets wet. The covered surfaces are dirtier and harder to dry than uncovered surfaces. Putting a wet cover away is a problem. When I’ve returned after rain has just ended, I’ve managed to “spin dry” the cover on the ramp, which worked although it must have looked weird. Can’t dry properly no matter what - and you still have to lay the cover on wet surfaces to fold it. Don’t think there’s an easy solution if it’s actually still raining, short of hauling the (heavy) cover inside and packing it there.
I started out using the cover most of the time - actually, at first, I used them both, every time. Now I know that really doesn’t make sense. For the last 8 months or so, I’ve used the reflective shields exclusively - I don’t even carry the cover with me anymore.
I can still imagine times when I would use the cover - places where bird poop is a problem, and if I have to park outside and snow or hail is expected.

When circumstances are right (good weather, on a ramp where I trust everyone, not too windy, etc.), I simply leave a door open. That’s the best of all - no greenhouse effect in the airplane, no time/effort needed.

There’s no perfect universal solution…

Mike.

marty

i assume you saw review in aviation consumer?

larry

If its a cover you are looking for Bruce has a new cover that goes from the prop to tail. If does away with the need for plugs, We love it. If that guy only made suits, I have yet to see a better fit…You can go to Bruce’s custom cover web site and see pick’s in the photo gallary.Of course you will see Dave and Ed’s first baby 157CD and also our older child 224DE ;)…Ed

Following several recommendations of COPA members, I ordered a set of SR22 covers from Bruce’s Custom Covers. Could it be that Ed’s plane was the template for these wonderful cover? They delivered to the Cirrus factory in a big enough box that I was glad not to handle it.

My needs were hangar protection, because we have 2 Cirrus planes in 1 hangar that takes some delicate jockeying, sun and occasional cold weather protection while travelling. I ordered the canopy cover (windshield to rear window, but NOT over parachute), cowl plugs, pitot cover, prop cover and wing tip pads. I travel with the covers but leave the pads in the hangar.

Fit & quality – both excellent.

Sun shields – unless their fit is perfect, go with the canopy cover. The Bahamas trip provided conclusive proof that the canopy cover works really well for sun protection. We left some water bottles and a chocolate bar in the plane and they were still cool after 3 days in the sun under the cover. Easy enough to put on and take off in a couple of minutes by 1 person, although really windy conditions requires 2 people (start with the windward side)

Cowl plugs – ordered with the set, fit well, cute warning flags.

For hangar protection, I got a set of wing tip pads – mainly to protect the other plane, but also to protect the strobe lights that are must-have-to-fly items.

Enjoy the Duluth experience!

Cheers
Rick

Mike:
Whose brand of heatshield did you use? Some come with a plastic “film” that ptries to prevent those feather scratches you talked about.
Brian

I think it depends where you are based. I bought both Bruce’s cover and sunshades, have had the same experience as Mike and come to the opposite conclusion: I always use the cover and don’t even carry the sunshades. The difference: California vs NJ. Rain is a rare problem here, and during the month we get it, freezing levels are low and I don’t fly much.

I have developed a technique for solo covering that works in winds up to 20-25 kts:

When removing the cover, roll it from back to front.

When putting it on, first drop the roll onto the windshield. Rolled it isn’t too likely to catch the wind.

Clip on the front, leaving all the slack you can.

Go up on the plane, unroll the cover to the anntena pouch and slip the pouch over the antenna

Go back to the front and take the slack out of the front strap

chase down and latch the remaining straps.

This is for a front quartering xwind. That seems to be what I always have. For a rear quartering wind, I’d just switch to doing it from the back first.

This comes from being based at an Our Lady of the Perpetual Crosswind airport.

-Curt (KSQL)

In reply to:


Whose brand of heatshield did you use? Some come with a plastic “film” that ptries to prevent those feather scratches you talked about.


Brian,

I have Kennon. I’d be interested to hear from anyone who has a different brand, perhaps one with more scratch protection.

FWIW, polishing does a good job of removing scratches - and making me a LOT more careful about how I use the sunshields.

Mike.