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polished frost

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Well-known member
Dec 13, 2005
I heard the part of FAR 135.227 that allows frost to be polished smooth for takeoff has been removed. My FAR/AIM 2010 still shows this as part of the FAR's: "Takeoffs may be made with frost adhering to the wings, or stabilizing or control surfaces, if the frost has been polished to make it smooth." It won't affect the way I operate but it's good to know if it's official. Is this true?
The AFM is likely more limiting on this subject.​

From the CL-604 AFM Limitations Section:​

During cold weather operations, the flight crew must ensure that the airplane fuselage, wings and tail surfaces are free from ice, snow or frost.​

From the LR-60 AFM Limitations Section:​

...requirement to assure that all critical surfaces of the airplane
(wing, vertical and horizontal stabilizers, flight control surfaces,​
spoilers and flaps) are free of frost, ice and snow for takeoff.

HS-125 was a little more agreeable, though: (This is several years old and may no longer be accurate).

�� The aircraft must be clear of snow, ice, and frost before
takeoff, with the exception of the following areas.​

Frost is allowable on underside of wings over the general
area of fuel tanks provided that the depth does not
exceed 0.125 inch (3 mm). If frost is present in this
region, the WAT limited takeoff weight must be reduced
by 1,000 lb (454 kg) and the net flight path reference and
fourth segment climb gradients must be obtained using a
weight 1,000 lb (454 kg) higher than the actual weight.​

Frost is allowable on the fuselage provided the layer is
thin enough to distinguish the surface features such as
paint lines or markings underneath, but all vents, probes,​
and ports must be clear of frost.

Anyone ever actually polished frost? Do FBO's have Hand-Buffers available?
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Actually, the OP was indeed correct. The polished part exception has been removed (looks like it was amended on Dec 1, 2009):


§ 135.227 Icing conditions: Operating limitations.

(a) No pilot may take off an aircraft that has frost, ice, or snow adhering to any rotor blade, propeller, windshield, stabilizing or control surface; to a powerplant installation; or to an airspeed, altimeter, rate of climb, flight attitude instrument system, or wing, except that takeoffs may be made with frost under the wing in the area of the fuel tanks if authorized by the FAA.
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It has been removed from our aircraft's AFM as well.

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