ARC Transponder

ARC Transponder

ATC reported on the final leg of my trip home that they were only picking up a primary target. No transponder signal at all.  I had encountered some moderate turbulence and severe updrafts (for a C-172).  From the cockpit, the transponder seems to be working normally, in as far as flashing amber lights go.

I went to slide it out and found that there is no screw head on the component that latches it into the panel draw. 

The transponder is the original ARC Model A.

I didn't know what to do as I do not have readily available info on it.  Has anyone had this happen?

Should it slide out anyway?

How can I turn the arm that latches it in (do I need to)?

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Re: ARC Transponder

I wouldn't try to take the unit out of the panel. There is likely nothing you can help by doing so.  I would first look at your transponder antenna on the belly of the airplane. It is either a small 3" blade antenna or a 3" spike with a ball on the end. Gently clean the antenna with a degreaser compound but be careful not to break off the spike (if it hasn't been broken off already!) they are very brittle and easy to snap off.  If cleaning the antenna doesn't fix the problem, you will have to go to an avionics shop and have them test the system. A "VFR" Transponder correspondence check (FAR 91.413) will turn up the cause of the problem whether it is a weak cavity tube, just off frequency or some other issue. Good luck with your problem.

Ken

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Re: ARC Transponder

Part of the Qustion I have is:
With the screw head off, how do I get it out of the panel?

I have since flown the plane on a 4.5 hour trip and no one had a problem picking up my signal. 

So until it fails consistently I won't know what's wrong.

OR

ATC had the problem and was blaming my equipment. (It was not locality based as I always got pick up in this area)

OR

I'm not doing anything.

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