One of the great advantages of owning an Amateur Built aircraft, like my Zenair 601 Zodiac HDS, is the privilege and responsibility of doing my own maintenance. I guess Transport Canada figures that after building the thing, I should understand the nuts and bolts enough to keep it safely flying. What a lot of pilots don’t understand is that even if they buy an Amateur Built aircraft that they did not construct themselves, they are still allowed to do all the maintenance if they want to. The same thing applies to formerly-certified aircraft which have been tranferred into an official Owner Maintenance status.
Once Transport Canada has “washed their hands” of any direct oversight of an aircraft’s maintenance issues, an appropriate placard has to be installed on the airplane stating that (basically) you’d better trust the aircraft owner because he/she and he/she alone is responsible for its safe maintenance.
Here’s an example of the required placard in an Amateur Built aircraft:
THIS AIRCRAFT IS OPERATING WITH A SPECIAL CERTIFICATE
OF AIRWORTHINESS FOR AMATEUR-BUILT AIRCRAFT.
And for a Certified Aircraft that has been converted to Owner Maintenance
“Special Certificate of Airworthiness – Owner Maintenance. This aircraft does not comply with international recognized standards of airworthiness.”
Just to illustrate how professionally my Amateur Built aircraft is maintained, I am pasting below an official diagram of the Flow Chart I use to diagnose and treat typical situations that arise: