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Volume 15, Number 7b
February 19, 2009
3M Lens Restoration System Available Now at Aircraft Spruce
3M Lens Restoration System lets you shine and restore plastic lenses, including landing lights, wing lights, and beacon lenses. Now you can produce professional results with the 3M Lens Restoration System and a household drill. This system is a fast and easy way to restore the clarity back to lenses that have become dull or cloudy over time. Call Aircraft Spruce at 1 (877) 4-SPRUCE or visit online.
Top News: Adjusting for the Timesback to top 
Sponsor Announcement

Eclipse Aviation sent home 800 of its remaining workforce of 850 in Albuquerque on Wednesday, but a company official said he hopes to recall them soon. "It's a furlough, not a layoff," Eclipse President and General Manager Mike McConnell told reporters in a conference call on Wednesday afternoon. He said the global financial crisis has slowed down efforts to put together the financing package necessary to complete the sale of the company, which was approved in bankruptcy court last month. "That it's taking longer speaks to the complexity of putting together global deals in today's economy," he said. "The good news is, we believe they're very close to closing the transaction." The affected workers will receive their next paycheck as scheduled, he said, and will continue to receive benefits. McConnell couldn't guarantee that all the furloughed employees will be recalled. He said the company still has about 1,000 orders for jets, with 30 right now in the production line. So far, 259 E500 jets have been delivered. More...

No surprise here: the 2008 year-end numbers, released on Tuesday by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, show that worldwide shipments of general aviation airplanes decreased for the first time in five years. The decline was wholly driven by the 20.8 percent drop in piston deliveries, down to 2,119 from 2,675 the year before. Turboprop deliveries grew 16.6 percent compared to 2007, and business jets were up by 15.6 percent. Overall, industry billings grew by 13.4 percent, to $24.8 billion. The positive numbers reflect the fulfillment of orders placed for turboprops and business jets during the strong economic years of 2006 and 2007, according to GAMA. All of the main piston manufacturers saw declines except for Piper, where deliveries increased from 221 in 2007 to 268 in 2008, driven by the popularity of the Matrix six-seat piston single. GAMA Chairman Mark Van Tine, president and CEO of Jeppesen, said despite current challenges, the industry is focused on the future. "The world's economy depends upon a robust air transportation system and general aviation is absolutely a vital component of that global system. Our industry's continued investment in research and development of new products is unprecedented," he said. "We have learned from history that investing smartly in our future and that of our customers is the best way to build our way out of tough economic times." For more details, and a PDF of the complete report, go to the GAMA Web site. More...

Air Power: Striving for "Raving Fans"!
Air Power, Inc.#1 Factory Engine Distributor — is dedicated to excellence and 100% Customer Satisfaction. Air Power, Inc. stops at nothing to turn their customers into "Raving Fans"! Air Power, Inc.'s people are friendly, knowledgeable, and have more Factory Engine experience than anyone in the industry! The Best Engines, the Guaranteed Lowest Price, and Zero-Down Factory Engine Financing!

Call Air Power, Inc. at (888) 759-4295 or go to FactoryEngines.com for details!
Rehabilitating Corporate Jets' Reputationback to top 

Cessna has created a Web site to maintain momentum on the ad campaign aimed at convincing corporate aircraft owners to keep using their planes. The campaign, now dubbed Cessna Rise, continues the theme that real CEOs aren't afraid to use jets to make their businesses more competitive." In the face of empty rhetoric, business aviation speaks for itself. So pull your aircraft out of its hangar and put it to work," says the latest ad, which appeared in the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday. "The companies that do, will be the very ones who lead the world back to prosperity." More...

The General Aviation Manufacturers Association and the National Business Aviation Association have reconfigured a familiar advocacy program to deal with the negative perception of business aviation in the minds of some "policy makers and opinion leaders." In a news release, GAMA President Pete Bunce said the reprise of the No Plane No Gain campaign is an effort to set the record straight on business aviation. "The contributions of business aviation to our nation's employment, commerce, competitiveness and health are profound but not always well understood," said Bunce. "We are launching this new multi-media educational campaign to get the word out that business aviation is working for America." In a podcast interview, NBAA President Ed Bolen told AVweb that although the new campaign shares the name of a 1990s promotion, the focus is different and aimed at having business aviation considered "for what it is." More...

Trade-A-Plane Features Thousands of Classifieds, Updated Hourly
With thousands of hourly updated Classifieds, a Product & Advertiser Index, Forums, NAAA Evaluator, Performance Database, Spec Sheets, and Aviation Weather, Trade-A-Plane gives you everything that keeps you flying. Order your Trade-A-Plane subscription by calling (800) 337-5263, or go online.
Aviation Safetyback to top 

Investigators studying last week's fatal crash of a Continental Connection Dash 8 Q400 in Buffalo, N.Y., now have found evidence that pilot inputs to the controls may have contributed to the airplane's stall, The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing sources close to the investigation. The flight data recorders show that the flight was routine until roughly a minute before impact, when the crew lowered the landing gear and extended the flaps, according to the WSJ sources. Almost immediately, the airspeed bled off and the stick-shaker activated, followed by a stick-pusher that automatically lowered the nose. It appears the captain pulled back on the stick with enough force to overpower the pusher and added power, causing a 31-degree pitch-up. The wings immediately stalled, and the airplane whipped to the left, then entered a steep right turn. The pilots continued to fight with the controls, and they were starting to recover when they "ran out of altitude," according to the WSJ source. NTSB member Steven Chealander, speaking to The New York Times earlier this week, urged "caution about jumping to conclusions that it might be an icing incident." More...

"Please stand down for now," EAA says, regarding its call to action on a Nevada proposal that would have allowed local authorities to control who uses the airspace at their local airports. Amid "vocal protest" from the state's aviation community, EAA says, the two Nevada state legislators who submitted the resolution aimed at banning homebuilt experimental aircraft from North Las Vegas Airport have agreed to suspend their legislative effort and instead work with local general aviation groups to improve airport safety. "We're hopeful that the local collaborative effort will yield a better understanding of the safety issues at North Las Vegas Airport," said Earl Lawrence, EAA vice president of regulatory affairs. "We're looking for real solutions that neither jeopardize our federal airspace-management standards nor scapegoat any particular category or class of general-aviation operations." Last week, EAA had asked its members and other aviators to participate in a letter-writing campaign to oppose the resolution, sponsored by state representatives Steven Horsford and Marilyn Kirkpatrick. More...

Aircraft Financing Available
Purchasing an aircraft but wondering about available financing? AirFleet Capital is dedicated exclusively to aircraft and has flexible financing programs available to meet your needs for new and used aircraft. From Light Sport to Light Jet, please call (800) 390-4324 or visit us online for a quote today!
What You Missed in AVwebBiz This Weekback to top 

Anyone in the southeastern U.S. who is interested in buying a GA airplane will have a chance to check out a variety of models in a series of Airport Expos that launches in Florida next week. Among the aircraft manufacturers scheduled to participate are Cessna, Daher-Socata, Diamond, Hawker Beechcraft, Husky, Liberty, Mooney, Piper, and Remos. "These Expo events give serious aircraft shoppers a chance to compare all the latest models at an airport close to where they live," said Fred Ahles, president of Premier Aircraft Sales, an organizer of the event. "The Southeast and Texas Aircraft Expo events were extremely well attended last year and we anticipate the same level of interest this year in Florida." The shows will make eight stops in Florida, starting Feb. 26, from Daytona to Miami; in March the shows visit Atlanta and Savannah in Georgia, and Knoxville, Tenn. In Texas, six stops are scheduled, starting in March. More...

The biggest annual gathering for the rotary crowd, Heli-Expo, opens this Sunday in Anaheim, Calif., with a full slate of product announcements, safety and management seminars, forums and workshops, an awards banquet, a job fair, and lots more. The state of the economy is sure to be a major topic of discussion, though the helicopter segment has so far felt less pain than many other aviation businesses. Production appears to be relatively stable and mass layoffs have not occurred, according to FlightGlobal. The main attraction at Anaheim is the chance to check out all the newest and best products and services in one place, with technical briefings from the exhibitors. This year's show has attracted a record 583 exhibitors, including 88 showing for the first time, and 73 helicopters are scheduled to be on the show floor. At last check, registrations were running close to the numbers for last year's show, which set a record with over 17,000 attendees and exhibitors. Online registration is still open. The Expo, held at the Anaheim Convention Center, runs Sunday through Tuesday. More...


Have you signed up yet for AVweb's no-cost weekly business aviation newsletter, AVwebBiz?

Delivered every Wednesday morning, AVwebBiz focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the business aviation industry, making it a must-read.

Add AVwebBiz to your AVweb subscriptions today by clicking here and choosing "Update E-mail Subscriptions."


Sun 'n Fun — It's Like Spring Break for Pilots
Scheduled for April 21-26 in Lakeland, Florida. Featuring the U.S. Army Parachute Team "Golden Knights." This annual event includes more than 4,500 airplanes, 500 commercial exhibitors, over 400 educational forums, seminars, and hands-on workshops for virtually every aviation interest. Plus a spectacular daily air show. All included in your ticket price. Special online-only discounts. Get your tickets online now at Sun-N-Fun.org.
Photo Galleriesback to top 

Click for more photos
Although the actions of the crew grabbed most of the attention in the aftermath of the ditching of Flight 1549 in New York last month, the aircraft itself proved itself to be a real traffic stopper. After being hoisted from the water and stripped of its flight surfaces, the fuselage of the Airbus A320 had to be moved using special trucks and trailers. The streets of East Rutherford, N.J., proved especially challenging. More...

Click for more photos (and video)
According to the Department of Defense's Pentagon Channel military information service, it took more than two days to remove a damaged C-17 from the runway at Bagram Air Field outside of Kabul, Afghanistan. The DOD has video of the recovery, and we have photos of the crippled aircraft. More...

Piper Meridian — Exhilarating
Piper Meridian. Power. Pure and simple. Relax in business jet luxury with turbine simplicity for 30% less than any comparable six-place turbine-powered aircraft.

Click here for more information on the Piper Meridian.
News Briefsback to top 

A consortium of 20 of general aviation's major alphabet groups, from EAA to AOPA to NBAA and GAMA to groups representing agricultural flyers, helicopter interests, state aviation officials, regional airlines and more, this week released a statement (PDF) summarizing their thoughts about aviation and climate change. "[This paper] offers a constructive set of principles to frame the discussion of policy tools to address aviation and climate change," the authors state. "It is clear that to further reduce aviation's impact on climate change requires a partnership between the industry, labor and government ... Solutions lay in four main areas: technology, infrastructure, operations, and economic measures." The report notes that since fuel efficiency has always been a powerful economic driver for aviation, the industry already has made impressive progress, having improved aircraft fuel efficiency by more than 70 percent during the last four decades. The best strategies, the report says, are to improve air traffic management, invest in research into new technologies, and develop alternative fuels. The groups, not surprisingly, are opposed to measures that impose fees, charges or taxes, calling them "unnecessary and counterproductive." They also say that any proposed measures to address aviation's impact on the environment should include a rigorous analysis of the expected benefits weighed against the cost to the economy, industry, jobs, communities, and the transportation infrastructure, and should take account of the costs and benefits of alternate forms of transport. More...

FAA has issued an AD for Cessna 400-series auxiliary wing spars...
General Motors has shut down its flight department, cutting 49 jobs. More...

Can You Believe Avemco® Will Not Exclude Coverage Even If ...
... your annual, medical, or flight review expires midterm? It's true. And with Avemco there are no hidden deductibles, no N-number blocking, and no family sub-limits. To learn more or to get your no-cost quote, call Avemco at (888) 241-7891, or click here to visit us online.
New on AVwebback to top 

Thinking of selling your aircraft? Looking to buy a "pre-loved" one? Here are some eye-opening "war stories" about pre-buys gone wrong, and some advice about how to avoid getting burned. More...

For years, the NTSB has complained that the FAA hasn't done enough to improve flight-in-icing requirements in the airline industry. If the Buffalo crash is icing-related, AVweb Editorial Director Paul Bertorelli thinks there will be hell to pay. More...

Over 17,000 Happy GAMIjectors® Customers Can't Be Wrong!
GAMIjectors® have given these aircraft owners reduced 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.
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 


Even GA pilots are beginning to feel pressure for their "rich man's hobby" in this turbulent economy. This week, we'd like to know how your friends, family, and peers view your involvement with aviation. Do others think you're rich because you fly?

Plus: Last week, we asked AVweb readers to put yourselves in the position of the major airplane makers and tell us how they'd react to the oppressive antipathy toward private jets that's been dominating the headlines; click through to see which approach readers favored. More...

Our sister publication, Aviation Consumer magazine, wants to hear about your experiences with engine warranties. We'd like to know about warranties of new or remanufactured engines from the factory, field overhauls and "boutique" engine shops. In your opinion, was the warranty sufficient? Did you encounter problems after installation, and were they resolved to your satisfaction? Did any factory, overhauler or installer go beyond their warranty to address any problems?

Please send a note to aviation_safety@hotmail.com and let us know your experiences, including the factory or shop doing the work, the aircraft type and the nature of any problems.

(The results will appear in a future issue of Aviation Consumer. For subscription information, click here.) More...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. What have you heard? More...

Working Healthy
A "no excuses" book that belongs in every repair station and line shop, Working Healthy is a manual on health and safety techniques written specifically for the aviation technician. Learn to protect your most valuable assets (your employees and students) from the risks and long-term health issues common in every aviation facility, and so reduce absenteeism, job delays, and your workman's comp premiums. One minor injury prevented will pay for this book 100 times over. Click here for details.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Fly on water thrust — this new jet pack idea may not be the best way to get to work, but it sure does look like a good time. The German company MS Watersports GmbH is marketing the JetLev-Flyer and selling it (lessons included) for about $128,000 — or just about what a brand-new two-seat 120-mph light sport aircraft costs. (Click through to watch.) More...

Judge for yourself by viewing AVweb's latest product report video. Editorial director Paul Bertorelli demonstrates traditional incandescent bulbs, HIDs, and new-age LEDs. The results are revealing. (Click through to watch.) More...

Economic Challenges Call for Proven Advertising Results — AVweb Delivers Results
Since 1995, AVweb has been the most comprehensive no-cost aviation site online. Advertisers reach over 255,000 pilots, aircraft owners, and aviation professionals via a unique and effective combination of newsletter text messages and web site banner ads. Links send readers directly to advertisers' web sites for instant information. Click now for details on AVweb's cost-effective programs.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Bay Minette Aviation at 1R8 in Bay Minette, Alabama (near Mobile).

AVweb reader Al Airey tells us he "actually had to go back and research the 'FBO of the Week' archives because I could not believe they had not previously been recognized":

[I] had to stop in both directions between Texas and Florida because of the pleasant service and fair price. The all-girl line crew make this a must-see FBO, and the facilities are first class, as well. You can do a quick turn, but you will probably want to stay and chat with the staff and maybe purchase one of their newly available photo calendars. This has to be the most unique FBO in all of aviation. The spacious facilities are spotless, prices are the best in the Mobile area, and did I mention the gorgeous crew that makes this a most memorable fuel stop? You should consider a wide deviation in your routing if needed to make a fuel stop at this amazing FBO.

We have to admit: This is the first nomination we've seen where the line crew drew 'em in and the prices brought 'em back ... .

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!


Reader-Submitted Photosback to top 

Another week has come and gone, and AVweb readers have again come through with some great airplane pics to kick off our Thursday morning. Let's get things started with this stellar shot from Andrew Kocher of Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. Seems like we're getting a lot of good air-lift photos lately — but we're not complaining! 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

Scott Simmons

Jeff van West

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

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team.

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

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