Avstar Aircraft of Washington, Inc.

10415 172nd St. E., Hangar A1
Puyallup, WA  98374
office (253)770-9964
or (253)770-0120
email:  avstarair@att.net

07-16-2007 Ask Mike! Archive
Adding the 5th & 6th seats to an older airplane


I'm currently in the process of purchasing a 51 V-Tail Bonanza. It has been heavily modified, including the longer V type 3rd window, speed slope windshield, hydraulic prop, tip tanks, etc...
My question is this... Can a person legally add a 5th seat into the newly enlarged baggage area? Or could a person re-configure the rear seats into a "Club Seating" arrangement?


Hi Dean;

You need to start with the document that approves the large baggage compartment on that particular airplane.

If it is the D'Shannon STC'd extended baggage, the answer is a definite no. Not really strong enough.

I know Beech had a kit for installing the long third window, but I don't believe they had one for the large baggage on a C, so I'm going to guess it must have been done on a field approval. If this is the case (or even if it is a Beech kit), look for wording in the documents (installation instructions, 337, STC, etc.) allowing for the 5th and / or 6th seat. There is quite a bit of additional structure required for those seats to be installed.

On my F, when we added the extended baggage, we intentionally omitted the 5th & 6th seat mounting provisions, and will only use the extra room for bulky items, not heavy, as CG is a concern on these critters.

For your alternate question, this depends on the type of seat installed.

If it is the original bench, the answer would be no, it won't fit, and was never approved. If it has the mid-late style with 2 tracks on the floor aft of the rear spar and a single track on top of the rear spar, again, no as the aft legs would have no place to attach if turned around. The late-late style is a maybe, as all the tracks are mounted on top the spar, but parts from the late V35B's would not work due to the lengths of the tracks. Parts from a 36 would, as all the tracks are the same length.

However, if it does have the 36 style, the answer, again, goes back to what the approval documentation states.

Realizing I did not answer your questions, I hope I gave you an idea of how to find the answers.

Gear Green,