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Volume 13, Number 47b
November 22, 2007
Adam, Cirrus, Columbia, Diamond, Liberty ...
The most respected new aircraft on the market all choose Continental engines. Bring your aircraft up to speed with a genuine Continental engine. Select from factory-new, factory-rebuilt, or factory-backed overhauls by Mattituck. Add value to your aircraft and the peace-of-mind that you're flying behind the best — Continental. Click here for further details.
News from the Northwestback to top 

With the bankrupt Columbia aircraft company due to go up for sale on November 27, Cirrus CEO Alan Klapmeier told AVweb on Tuesday that his company won't be making a bid after all. "We have done our due diligence, and we think there are a lot of problems that would have to be solved," he said. "They wouldn't be in bankruptcy, if that wasn't true." A buyer would have to take on those problems, plus all the warranty costs for the current fleet, he said. Taking on the Columbia product line would divert a lot of financial and engineering resources that could be better invested in developing The Jet, Klapmeier said. More...

All three occupants of two Cessnas that brushed each other over Commencement Bay, off Tacoma, Wash., on Tuesday walked —and swam— away from the mishap. Cessna 182 pilot Bud Williams said he felt a thud that sent his charts and paperwork flying all over the cabin and looked out to see another aircraft in a circling descent to the ocean below. Williams said he quickly determined his aircraft was controllable. "I figured my plane was in flyable condition. Everything checked out," Williams, 63, told the Seattle Times. He followed the other aircraft and watched it ditch under control. He called 121.5 to give the coordinates of the ditching and then headed to a nearby airfield where he made an uneventful landing. His aircraft suffered damage to the right wheel pant, fuselage and a wingtip. Meanwhile the two unidentified occupants of the other aircraft, a son taking his mother for lunch at nearby Gig Harbor, clung briefly to the sinking Cessna before it sank in 200 feet of water. More...

Zulu Time ... From Lightspeed
The new Zulu headset looks different because it is different. Made with magnesium, stainless steel, and four types of composite plastics, it's extremely durable and yet weighs just over 13 ounces. Rather than concentrating purely on cutting decibels, Lightspeed engineers looked at how pilots perceive noise at different frequencies. You get broader noise attenuation over the entire audible range. Zulu has more total noise cancellation than any headset on the market. Click here for a dealer near you.
The High Cost of Making Partsback to top 

Precision Airmotive has reached a tentative deal with "a group including Tim Henderson, President of Aero Accessories, and others involved in the manufacture of the Tempest brand of general aviation products," to buy Precision’s line of MSA aircraft carburetors, according to a news release from Aero Accessories/Tempest issued Monday. The group says it plans to move the manufacturing facilities for the carbs to a facility in an undisclosed location in North Carolina. Precision announced earlier this month that it was suspending manufacture and distribution of the carbs and parts after it was unable to obtain product liability insurance. There’s no mention of the insurance issue in the Henderson Group’s release. More...

When a Beech Baron crashed into a New Jersey neighborhood in November 1999, killing the pilot and his wife and child, as well as one person on the ground, many lawsuits followed. This week, one of those suits was resolved in favor of S-Tec Corporation, based in Texas, manufacturer of the airplane's autopilot. The case was significant for general aviation, according to lawyer David Zeehandelaar, who led the defense team for S-Tec, because "the conventional wisdom is that it's tough for a manufacturer to win in a product liablity case." The NTSB had determined in July 2000 that the probable cause of the accident was the pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control. Factors in the accident, the NTSB said, were failure of the horizontal situation indicator for undetermined reasons and the pilot's use of inappropriate medication. Zeehandelaar told AVweb on Wednesday that although the NTSB report was not admitted in court, his firm argued that the HSI that failed was not part of the S-Tec autopilot system, and also that the autopilot wasn't being used at the time of the crash. "We had radar data that showed the final turn was made at a rate of 6 degrees per second, which is not standard rate, and would require pilot input," Zeehandelaar said. The trial lasted for eight weeks and included testimony from approximately 30 expert witnesses on topics including piloting, aerodynamics, engineering, meteorology, aeromedical issues, and more. More...

IFR Pilots: Take Your Flight-Planning Skills to the Next Level
Introducing IFR Weather, Planning & Tactics — a new computer training program from PilotWorkshops.com. Join their experts as they plan and fly real IFR trips, using the latest online tools to interpret the weather and develop the safest flight plans. This program provides a structured approach that will have you better prepared to manage the complex and challenging environment of instrument flight. Click here to learn more.
Bringing Pilots Home Safeback to top 

When famed aviator Steve Fossett went missing in Nevada last September, the scale of the search was humbling to many pilots who wondered, if I disappear one day, will the whole world come looking? Thanks to the Internet, it's easier for even us regular folks to get the word out when a beloved pilot fails to come home. On Oct. 23, Ron Boychuk, 60, took off in his Cessna 172 from Springbank Airport near Calgary, Alberta, en route to Qualicum Beach, in British Columbia. He never arrived, and after extensive air and ground searches turned up nothing, his family launched a Web site in the hope that folks in the area will remember to keep a lookout. "If you or anyone you know has any information, no matter how small, we want to know, as any info that leads to the finding of Ron will result in a cash reward," the site reads. Boychuk's family has raised about $20,000, according to the Edmonton Sun. His three sons have joined with search and rescue teams and many volunteers to scour the area, but came up with nothing. "Because of the large area and the terrain, there is still sooo much more to search," it says at the site. "His sons will not give up until their father is found." More...

If you think your flying job is stressful sometimes, consider the Monday morning that two Australian pilots had this week in Papua New Guinea. They were flying a chartered aircraft -- the reports don't specify what kind of airplane -- carrying $2 million in cash for a bank, with two security guards on board. The two guards, however, pointed their guns at the pilots and suggested they should change course. They landed at a neglected World War II-era airstrip on an offshore island near Port Moresby, the nation's capital, where the guards' three masked and armed accomplices were waiting. The pilots, however, apparently managed to signal air traffic controllers of their dilemma. Reports differ regarding what happened next -- it may be that the three masked men armed with shotguns stole a dinghy from island locals and headed for the coast, with the pilots on board, but were captured. But another version says the pilots were found by police, covered in mud and handcuffed to a tree. A gunfight ensued, the police killed one of the guards and recovered the money, but two of the bad guys escaped. "It is only a matter of time before the other two are captured," Police Commissioner Gari Baki told the Herald-Sun. More...

The 2008 Aircraft Spruce Pilot Shop Catalog Is Now Available
Aircraft Spruce & Specialty has published a new, full-color, 88-page pilot supply catalog which is available at no charge. Products in the new catalog include handheld GPS and nav/coms, JPI and Electronics International engine monitors and scanners, headsets, intercoms, flight bags, laminated checklists, folding bikes, oxygen systems, windsocks, survival gear, flight jackets, Scheden sunglasses, weather stations, Jeppesen and ASA flight training products, aviation software and simulators, charts, videos, books, and much more. Call 1-877-4-SPRUCE or visit online.
News Briefsback to top 

It wasn't that long ago that female pilots here in the U.S. were an uncommon sight -- and unsettling, to some. Now in other parts of the world, women are just starting to find their way into the front seat, and not everyone is happy about it. In Qatar, the first Arab woman to fly a helicopter has been widely ridiculed and subjected to threatening phone calls after appearing in public wearing her pilot's uniform. "All phone calls had a similar message to convey," Munira Al Dosri told The Peninsula. "People were telling me they felt ashamed to see me without the abaya and veil (Qatari women's traditional attire). They told me they were ashamed of me being a Qatari woman." Qatar, a small country bordered by Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf, is one of the richest countries in the world. Al Dosri works for Gulf Helicopter and plans to continue flying and earning more ratings. More...

If your holiday wish is to go flying with CNN reporter (and pilot) Miles O'Brien or to have aviation photographer Paul Bowen personally autograph a copy of his classic book "Air to Air" for you, then Build-A-Plane's eBay auction site is the place you're looking for. You can also bid to share a talkative lunch with aviation writer Bill Cox, fly a P-51 Mustang, or take an aerobatics course. Purchases at the site support Build-A-Plane's mission to help kids learn science, technology, engineering and math by building real airplanes. New items are being added to the auction all the time, says Build-A-Plane President Lyn Freeman. "The proceeds from this unique fundraiser, something totally new and different for aviation, will help us continue to help kids," he said. More...

Download No-Cost Runway Flash Cards Now!
Landing a plane is tough. Flying into unfamiliar runways makes it even tougher — and more dangerous. Ensure you and your crew's safety by downloading these no-cost flash cards today. Each of the 23 flash cards displays an airport sign or pavement marking as well as the required pilot action. Use them as a quick reference before your departure or during your flight. Download the Runway Safety Flash Cards now.
Nuisances Out of Controlback to top 

After a TSA agent at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport said he smelled alcohol on the breath of a Midwest Airlines pilot last week, airport police arrested him. A breath test registered a blood alcohol level of .016, and the FAA limit for pilots is .04 and eight hours. The airline's own limit is .02 percent. Reports were unclear regarding how long since the pilot had indulged (if he had), but his lawyer said there's enough alcohol in mouthwash to register a .016 level. The pilot was detained by police for three hours, but wasn't charged with a crime. He was taken off flight duty until the airline completes its investigation. Some early reports of the incident noted that the pilot was carrying a gun, for which he was certified, and also mis-reported the alcohol level at 0.16. More...

Most pilots love the sound of engines in the morning -- and have little patience with airport neighbors who complain -- but in Vancouver, one airline pilot who chose to live close to the airport has had it with early-morning engine tests and middle-of-the-night jumbo-jet takeoffs. "Some areas of [the city] are absolutely blasted," Neil Filipek told Canada.com. "Most airports in the world do a better job addressing complaints than Vancouver." Filipek says the airport should build an engine run-up enclosure to shield neighbors from the noise, and do a better job of addressing complaints. "Other major airports do not allow 24-hour operations," he said. He says he got the brush off from the airport when he made suggestions for improvements. "Officials are used to doing whatever they want because the airport is on federal land," Filipek said. Airport officials told Canada.com they might consider building a noise shelter, and said they are already doing a "really good job" at addessing noise issues. More...

AFSS Is Up to Speed. And Gaining Altitude.
The new automated flight services system is here. Revolutionizing flight service operations. Reducing legacy sites. Bringing 15 upgraded sites and three hubs online. Retaining 1,200 specialists. Marrying local needs with national information sources. The result: ever-improving levels of performance. And a future of efficient, effective service that give general aviation pilots more flexibility than they've ever thought possible. To see for yourself, visit AFSS.com.
News in Briefback to top 

Two pilots died in the crash of a helium balloon in Iowa ...
Liberty Aerospace's first U.S. dealer is First Flight Aviation, Arkansas ...
Feeling thankful? Air Care Alliance can use your help. More...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. What have you heard? More...

Over 16,000 Happy GAMIjectors® Customers Can't Be Wrong!
GAMIjectors® have given these aircraft owners reduced peak cylinder head temperatures, reduced fuel consumption, and smoother engine operation. GAMIjectors® alter the fuel/air ratio in each cylinder so that each cylinder operates with a much more uniform fuel/air ratio than occurs with any other factory set of injectors. To speak to a GAMI engineer, call (888) FLY-GAMI, or go online for complete engineering details.
We Want to Hear Your Voiceback to top 

According to Time magazine, 49% of pilots are "very happy" with their jobs. This week, we'd like to know how many AVweb readers fall into that category. Plus: Your answers to last week's question, Should the U.S. government re-open a serious inquiry into UFOs? More...

Collier Trophy Collectible Medallion Series 3 Now Available
NAA's Collier Trophy Centennial Medallion Series 3 is now available for gift-giving or for your own collection, along with Series 1 and 2. A commemorative card encases a heavy metal medallion showing the Collier Trophy on one side and an image of the F-22 Raptor on the reverse. Series 1 reverse shows SpaceShipOne, and Series 2 reverse shows the Eclipse 500. Visit NAA's merchandise section to view and order.
New on AVwebback to top 

Columns | Features | What's New | Calendar | Brainteasers

If your mechanic seems over-cautious and self-protective in his approach to maintaining your airplane, he has good reason. More...

Microsoft Flight Simulator X is one of the most powerful PC simulators available, and practicing GPS approaches with FSX is a great way to prepare for (and decrease expense in) flight in a real plane. More...

Get into the Cockpit!
Classic Cockpits is a series of high-quality DVDs that put you into the pilot's seat of some of the world's great airplanes. Be there for engine start, checklists, taxi, take-off, climb, cruise, descent, landing, and more. Titles currently available are: Flying the Legendary DC-3, Flying the PBY Catalina, and Flying the De Havilland Vampire. Order your DVD now online.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Antrim County Airport at KACB in Bellaire, Michigan.

AVweb reader Stan Prevost flies into KACB several times a year, and he tells us it's always a pleasant experience, accompanied by a warm welcome. Here's how Stan was greeted on a recent arrival:

As we disembarked the airplane, airport manager John Strehl met us at the airplane with two plastic bags, greeted us by name, and told us to help ourselves to tomatoes growing on vines they had planted around the terminal.

Fresh tomatoes! Can't top that!

Keep those nominations coming. For complete contest rules, click here.

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!


New Gift Ideas Have Been Added to AVweb's Holiday Marketplace
When purchasing gifts for family, friends, and flying buddies, go to AVweb's Holiday Marketplace. AVweb is the perfect place to find perfect gifts for pilots and aviation enthusiasts. And for yourself — forward the link to your family and friends as a hint as to what you want! It's easy online, with AVweb!
Reader-Submitted Photosback to top 

This week's top reader-submitted photos will be going live just as our U.S. readers are busy skipping breakfast so they can eat an extra-large helping of turkey and dressing and grandmother's house. Yes, it's Thanksgiving here in the States, and in that spirit we have to say thanks to every single reader who's taken time to submit a photo over the past year (and earlier). Many of you have been featured here (or in the slideshow on our home page), but many more haven't. Rest assured that even if you haven't won a hat or been lavished praise here in "POTW," your photos have brought us many hours of joy, and we look forward to seeing more of them in the coming year. (Here's where you send 'em in.)

Tom Callahan of Pensacola, Florida knows his color wheel — and knows when to feature at a too-often-underappreciated subject, too. "We love the Blue Angels," writes Tom, "but Fat Albert holds a special place in our hearts. Like the character in the Bill Cosby cartoons, Fat Albert always save the day by doing the heavy lifting."

You said it, Tom. And we'll say thanks by sending you one of those coveted AVweb hats you read about here from time to time. More...

More AVweb for Your Inboxback to top 

HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST weekly business aviation newsletter, AVwebBiz? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the business aviation industry. Business AVflash is a must read. Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/. More...

Names Behind the Newsback to top 


AVwebFlash is a weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

The AVwebFlash team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

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