AVwebFlash Complete Issue: Volume 15, Number 28a

July 13, 2009

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
3 Airplanes ... 3 Levels ... 1 Edition ... Ice
New for 2009, Cirrus Aircraft shakes the lineup with a new way to spec out your new Cirrus. SR20, SR22, and Turbo models are now available in three well-equipped trim levels - "S," "GS," and "GTS"; Known Ice Protection is ready to go on SR22 and Turbo models; or choose an all-new premium interior and exterior upgrade package dubbed "X-Edition." Visit CirrusAircraft.com for details.
Top News: The End of Impulse-Buy Charts? back to top 
Sponsor Announcement

FAA To Create Aeronautical Chart Cartel?

If your FBO doesn't sell $5,000 worth of charts annually, it might not be selling any charts to anyone after Oct. 5, 2009 -- that's when the FAA and National Aeronautical Navigation Services (formerly NACO) new Chart Agent criteria take effect. Proponents claim the new criteria will help reduce costs and increase efficiency; opponents fear it may for all practical purposes make spontaneous chart purchases at small airports (and spontaneous trips) a thing of the past. At present some smaller FBOs rely on discounted pricing from the FAA and returns for credit for expired charts to make selling charts financially feasible. Under the new program, businesses that don't sell $5,000 worth of charts annually would either be cut out of the distribution network -- and no longer sell charts -- or be forced to rely on the graces of a select group of high-volume private chart distributors that meet the target sales volume. According to the FAA, only 293 of 1790 independent chart distributors currently meet the mark. And, for some, that raises serious questions.

Under the new system, the FAA would allow selected high-volume Chart Agents to purchase the charts and distribute them through "their own network of sales outlet(s)." Theoretically, smaller outlets that won't qualify as Chart Agents but are still interested in offering charts to pilots would work out arrangements with the larger qualifying Chart Agents. According to one AVweb reader and FBO operator, those arrangements "are nowhere near as favorable" as those the FAA has (until Oct. 5) offered, prompting the fear some outlets will simply choose to remove charts from their offerings. For more details, find "HPO White Paper," the "Agent Listing Spreadsheet" and "Chart Agent Letter" here.

Business Aviation Will Help Companies Not Only Survive
But Prosper During the Current Financial Crisis

To be your most productive, and your most efficient, you must keep flying. Because in so doing, you will emerge from these times even stronger than before. And you will replace the uncertainty that surrounds many, with the confidence and courage to light the way for all. Visit CessnaRise.com.
Accident Investigation Reports back to top 

Air France Investigation Enters Next Phase

Multiple submarines remain in the search for sunken debris, but they will no longer be actively "listening" for emergency signals from the recorders aboard Air France Flight 447. It's been more than 40 days since the Airbus A330-220, with 228 aboard, crashed in the Atlantic ocean while en route out of Rio de Janeiro for Paris -- the aircraft's flight data and cockpit voice recorders are designed to emit signal for 30 days. "All is not lost," Pierre-Henri Gourgeon, director of Air France-KLM told the Le Figaro last week. Brazil's military last month called off the search for floating debris and bodies having recovered 51 bodies (including that of one of the flight's pilots), some 640 pieces of aircraft wreckage and not a single inflated life vest. Examination of wreckage has led investigators to believe the aircraft broke up after striking the water in a fairly flat attitude at high speed and on track with its route.

With investigators citing the aircraft's own automated reports of inconsistent air data, an Air France pilots' union Wednesday accused safety authorities of failing to prevent the crash. The unions published a letter Wednesday stating that agencies had failed to act on information that certain pitot tubes fitted to certain Airbus aircraft were known to have faults.

NTSB Releases Probable Cause Of Fossett Crash -- Downdraft

The NTSB has determined downdrafts were the probable cause of the fatal September 3, 2007, crash near Mammoth Lakes, Calif., of a Bellanca 8KCAB-180 piloted by Steve Fossett. The Board determined the aircraft inadvertently encountered descending air that exceeded the climb capabilities of the Bellanca, which was flying over mountainous terrain at a high density altitude. Fossett's disappearance initiated a month-long search that involved the Civil Air Patrol, state and county authorities, Fossett's friends and an unknown number of private citizens who participated online by scanning the latest satellite imagery of the search area. But it was not until a hiker found some of the pilot's personal affects on October 7, 2008, that an approximation of the wreckage's whereabouts was determined. An aerial search based on the findings discovered the wreckage about half a mile away at an elevation of approximately 10,000 feet. Fossett was a pioneering aviator and set records for distance and speed flown in numerous aircraft types. He was also the first person to fly solo around the world in a balloon.

Among Fossett's long list of world records, he holds those for the longest non-stop flight in aviation history (25,766 miles flown in the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer); fastest speed flown in a manned balloon (200 mph); and longest out-and-back flight in a glider (1,244 miles). The Board's report is available online here.

Is There Anything More Important than Protecting Your Family?
Be certain you have the right life insurance coverage. Get the information you need to find the right policy for your family's protection at the Pilot Insurance Center. Call PIC at (800) 380-8376 or visit PICLife.com.
Summer Air Show Updates back to top 

Marketing And Adventure For Sling LSA Promoters

Two men plan to fly their Rotax-912S-powered, aluminum-constructed and modified D6 Sling light sport airplane (not as modified) around the world, carrying up to 118 gallons in each wing for the longer legs, including at least one over-ocean stretch of more than 2,000 nautical miles. Mike Blyth and James Pitman hope to begin the journey at Johannesburg, South Africa this week (they're aiming for Thursday) and they expect to make a stop at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. The complicated task of preparation entails more than aircraft modifications as evidenced by "delays in documentation and flying permits" that have (at the time of this writing) set the departure date back (but just one day) to Thursday. Their final preparations have involved autopilot and propeller adjustments and inoculations as recommended for the multitude of countries they plan to greet along their way.

As planned, Pilots Mike Blyth and James Pitman will see their longest legs between Guinea and Brazil, and California and Hawaii. The two have previously captured flying adventures on DVD and are both co-owners of The Airplane Factory, which sells the Sling aircraft. Interested observers can follow the two online.

Airshow Performer Clanton, Racer Miller Killed In Crashes

It's been a tough week for performance pilots. Chandy Clanton, three-time member of the United States Unlimited Aerobatic Team and several time EAA AirVenture Oshkosh performer, was killed Friday in her Edge 540 ahead of the Wingnuts Flying Circus in Tarkio, Mo. She was 36 years old. On Thursday, Reno Air Races pilot Gary Miller died when his SNJ named Mystical Powers crashed and burned near Kiowa, Colo. Clanton was scheduled to fly in the Missouri show and was also scheduled to fly this year at AirVenture.

Clanton's aviation history included airshow performances and experience in aircraft ranging from the Piper Cub through the P-51 to the King Air and Lear Jet (Clanton earned a type rating in a Lear 24 with only 400 hours in her logbook, according to her Web site). Outside of aviation, Clanton served as president of Bank Iowa Corporation, which manages banks in 21 locations. She was also the mother of two young boys and a strong supporter of Mission Central for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.

The New Meridian G1000 — Commanding
The new Meridian G1000 with Garmin G1000 avionics and GFC 700 autopilot suite, business jet luxury and turbine simplicity for 30% less than any comparable six-place turbine-powered aircraft. With a panel as commanding as the airplane, and a million dollars less than its closest competitor, "Pilot in Command" means precisely that.

Click here for more information on the new Piper Meridian G1000.
Aircraft in Jeopardy back to top 

Aerial Firefighting Aircraft Burglarized

With fire season coming early to the southwest, three aircraft and two helicopters operated by regional firefighters at the Grand Junction Interagency Air Center in Colorado were grounded Friday morning after it was found that burglars had entered the aircraft and stolen equipment. "Tens of thousands of dollars" worth of pilot gear and equipment is missing from the facility, according to The Grand Junction Sentinel. The aircraft were temporarily grounded, inspected for vandalism or sabotage and "almost all" were then cleared for service by Friday night, the paper reported. The criminals had to contend with an access-code-protected front gate and/or a barbed-wire fence that surrounds the facility, which is itself within the grounds of Grand Junction Regional Airport. The center, managed jointly by BLM and U.S. Forest Service in conjuction with the National Park Service and State Forest Service, coordinates air tankers, smoke jumpers and other fire support services for operations in western Colorado and eastern Utah.

The facility is looking at ways to increase security and has already taken short-term measures to further secure the property. At this time, police believe more than one individual was involved in the burglary. Police are requesting citizens who have any information to call Crime Stoppers at (970) 241-STOP.

Trislander Throws Blade, Loses Door In Flight

"It was like an explosion going off inside the plane," a passenger of a Great Barrier Airlines Trislander told the New Zealand Herald, after the aircraft's right engine threw at least one blade into the side of the aircraft as it carried 11, with an empty seat in the cabin ... where the blade hit. When the propeller blade hit, it scattered debris throughout the cabin and took off a right side door, leaving a gaping hole in the aircraft through which the hub-less engine could (in theory) be clearly seen. The event occurred last Sunday and somewhere out there someone may have in-flight pictures -- one passenger had the wherewithal to take out his camera and another claims to have had steady enough hands to take some shots as the aircraft returned to Claris. Passengers told the Herald they'd noticed the engine wobbling during the takeoff roll at Claris Airfield on a flight that would otherwise have ended in Auckland. One passenger told the Herald "there were engineers working on that engine" on the same aircraft when he had flown on it days earlier.

As fate would have it, the propeller's departure shortened the flight to about six minutes total. The aircraft returned to land safely at Claris, but two of the flight's very shaken passengers required medical aid to extract debris from their eyes. Those two may have been lucky only in the difficulty it may have caused them in surveying the damage. Other passengers wondered if they would survive or "is the aircraft going to break up?" Great Barrier Airlines chief executive, Gerard Rea, said the maintenance had nothing to do with the propeller, and that the airline would make available the results of its own internal investigation. Rea also noted the aircraft is capable of flying "comfortably" on two engines ... presumably one could remove the word "comfortably" when accounting for a gaping hole in the fuselage.

Sensenich Expands Its Revolutionary Line of Propellers for Light Sport and Experimental Aircraft
Lighter in weight, easier to navigate and less expensive to fly, Sensenich's composite props are also stronger than similar props. Their carbon construction allows the propeller's weight to aerodynamically optimize flight and minimize its susceptibility to harmonic vibration damage. Pitch-adjustable, their built-in stops ensure selection of the most efficient pitch. Check 'em out in booths 4145-4147 at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, or click here to learn more online.
News Briefs back to top 

787 Smokes 'Em Up

Although a first flight for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner will have to wait until engineering fixes strengthening the wing attachments, that doesn't mean the aircraft has to sit idle. Engineers and test pilots got to run it up and down the runway at Paine Field last Tuesday in its first taxi tests. The aircraft reached speeds of about 100 knots in at least one run and the brakes were tested. They apparently work.

Boeing hasn't announced any further testing, and a date for the first flight still hasn't been determined.

Click for a gallery of photos from the event.

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2009, A Displays Extravaganza

The collection of aircraft set for display at this year's (July 27 to August 2) EAA AirVenture Oshkosh airshow does not scream recession or depression and could prove to be among the best gatherings the group has put together. Aside from the roughly 2,500 showplanes expected annually, the 2009 collection will include the space-tourist-launching Virgin Galactic VMS Mothership "Eve"; Airbus' A380 -- the world's largest airliner; an Avro Lancaster WWII bomber; a 1909 Wright B Flyer replica; a rare Japanese "Zero" and Messerschmitt ME109 will add to more familiar flock of warbirds; and possible appearances from the dawn of a new age -- electric flight -- are hoped for, if not expected. The show will celebrate anniversaries of the Cessna 150 (50th), the T-28 (60th) and the Pietenpol homebuilt (80th) among others.

Randall Fishman hopes to have his first two-seat electric aircraft there to greet a Chinese offering from Yuneec aircraft -- both are scrambling to be ready for the show. Plus, multiple takes on the flying car (or roadable aircraft) are expected. See the whole list online or go to AirVenture.org for more. In a year when people around the world are struggling with a downturned economy AirVenture has the goods to provide some lift.

United Breaks Policy, Offers Money For Guitar

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United Airlines has offered to break its baggage loss policy and compensate a Canadian singer for his broken guitar. Dave Carroll became an Internet sensation last week when his music video entitled United Breaks Guitars went viral (more than two million views so far). In a follow-up video (70,000 views), Carroll says he's gratified by the huge response, doesn't want money from United and hopes the airline donates it to charity. He also empathizes with United baggage services manager "Ms. Irlweg," whose first name hasn't been released, saying she did a good job of representing the airline's interests and policies. His dealings with Irlweg, however, will be the basis of a new video which he says will be a "light-hearted" look at his year-long battle with the airline.

Carroll and his band, Sons of Maxwell, of Halifax, were on their way to a gig in Nebraska last year when rough handling — in plain view of the the alarmed passengers — snapped the neck off band leader Dave Carroll's $3,500 Taylor guitar. After a year of appeals for compensation, the video is the result. After the video went viral, Carroll was interviewed by most of the morning TV news programs and repeatedly told the hosts he wasn't interested in money. He said the attention has resulted in numerous offers to write songs and perform.

Share Your Thoughts on Aviation Headsets
What's important to you when choosing an aviation headset? Please take a few moments to complete an online survey. Help influence the headset industry.

Go to survey.
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

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. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

Become a Mooniac Now
There has never been a better time to own the fastest single-engine piston plane available. Mooney Airplane Company is offering generous incentives, low interest rates, the best warranty in the industry, and immediate delivery from current inventory. In addition, you may qualify for significant tax advantages with 50% bonus depreciation this year. Click here for the top 10 reasons to buy a Mooney now.
Another Chance to Win an AV8OR Begins Here back to top 

AVweb and Bendix/King by Honeywell Are Giving Away an AV8OR to Celebrate AirVenture!

Bendix/King by Honeywell is helping us give away another AV8OR handheld MFD unit to celebrate EAA AirVenture Oshkosh! All you have to do is click the image at right to enter your name and e-mail address. And no, we're not going to rent or sell your name, but Bendix/King by Honeywell may send you information on the AV8OR. You may also forward this newsletter to friends and invite them to sign-up for AVweb's EAA AirVenture 2009 coverage and qualify for the AV8OR prize drawing, too. (We won't spam them, either, but we will send them our e-mail news Flashes.)

Deadline for entries is midnight EST on Sunday, August 2, 2009.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.

(There's nothing to buy. All you need to do is be registered with AVweb.)

JA Air Center, Your Source for the New Garmin GPSMap 696
JA Air Center is YOUR source for Garmin equipment, including the new GPSMap 696 with Victor Airways, Jet Routes, XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, and Safe Taxi. JA Air purchases used GPS units, avionics, and aircraft.

JA Air Center is now open in Sugar Grove, IL (KARR) providing the finest avionics installations, turbine/piston maintenance, avionics/instrument service, mail order, and aircraft sales. Call (800) 323-5966, or click for more information.
New on AVweb back to top 

AVweb Insider Blog: United Breaks Policy and Faith with Employees

By now, most everyone has seen Dave Carroll's video for "United Breaks Guitars" and empathized with the plight of the passenger who can't get any satisfaction from the major airlines. Now may be a good time to extend some of that empathy to "kind Ms. Irlweg" and the rest of United's policy-enforcing employees, Russ Niles says in the latest installment of our AVweb Insider blog.

Read more.

AVweb Insider Blog: Airplanes and Global Warming

You knew we would have to talk about this sooner or later. Like most of us, Paul Bertorelli concedes he hasn't the first clue about rationalizing airplane ownership with climate change — but that didn't stop him from sharing his thought on the AVweb Insider blog. Log in and add your own opinion to the mix.

Read more.

27 Years of the RVator
Over half the airplanes at GNB are Vans homebuilts. In fact, over 6,100 have been completed and are flying. If a 200 mph, 9 gph airplane intrigues you, this is where to learn more. It's 500 pages of builder and flyer advice written by Vans Aircraft, specifically on the RV-3 through RV-10. Nothing will describe the building experience better, and nothing will be more useful once you start. Buy the book, CD, or eBook at AVwebBooks.com for $29.95.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

NAFI Offers Group Memberships

File Size 7.6 MB / Running Time 8:15

Podcast Index | How to Listen | Subscribe Via RSS

For decades, the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) has represented the interests of thousands of flight instructors, but many of those instructors work for businesses or schools that don't necessarily share that affiliation. AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with NAFI's Jason Blair about the organization's group program, which launches today.

Click here to listen. (7.6 MB, 8:15)

Exclusive Video: Aspen EFIS in the Diamond DA20

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

The DA20 is a terrific instrument and basic trainer, and now it has the option of a glass panel with the Aspen EFIS system. AVweb's Paul Bertorelli recently checked out the system with test pilot Rob Johnson.

Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to download the video directly.

Video Marketplace Spotlight

Classic Cockpits DVDs
Rick Searle Productions takes you behind the stick of some of the world's most incredible classic airplanes — the Douglas DC-3, the PBY Catalina, the de Havilland Vampire, and the Avro Lancaster — in a series of Classic Cockpits DVDs.

Click here to watch the video (and discover other great products) at AVweb's Video Marketplace.

Traditional Tactics Need a Fresh Approach
Doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Isn't it time to initiate a digital marketing program with AVweb that will deliver traffic and orders directly to your web site? Discover several new and highly successful marketing options to use in lieu of static print or banner campaigns. Click now for details.
Your Favorite FBOs back to top 

FBO of the Week: Duffy's Aircraft (Marshfield, WI)

Nominate an FBO | Rules | Tips | Questions | Winning FBOs

AVweb reader Marcelaine Lewis has this week's top FBO, Duffy's Aircraft at Marshfield (Wis.) Municipal Airport (KMFI). Marcelaine writes:

If you're well enough to fly, yet sick enough to need to go to the Marshfield Clinic, Duffy and Jeff Gaier will greet you on the ramp with a smile, homemade chocolate chip cookies, and "hometown hospitality." If your clinic appointment is short, they will even let you use the courtesy car. (And if you have to spend the night, within a short walking distance is the Clearwaters Hotel, owned by another aviation enthusiast.)

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!

The Lighter Side of Flight back to top 

Short Final

My instructor and I were flying around today (July 8, 2009) and had an interesting exchange with ATC. I don't know if you'll include it in the "Short Final," but we got a chuckle out of it.

We were doing maneuvers under the hood in a BE-76 Duchess. My instructor had failed my left engine, and I was just getting ready to restart when Whiteman Approach came on and told a Columbia that they had traffic to their 10 o'clock. (That traffic was us.)

ATC then came on and told us, "Mule Flight 106, traffic is 1 o'clock, a Columbia a couple miles out." (I can't remember how many for sure.)

My instructor replied that we were looking for traffic and then decided that we should make a turn to the west. On the radio, he told Whiteman approach of our impending turn.

Whiteman came back, advising, "Mule Flight 106, keep an eye out for that traffic. They are moving about double your rate of speed." (Vyse is 85 kts on a Duchess.)

My instructor came back and said, "We're a little slow because we're running on one engine right now."

Whiteman came back with, "We thought something was going on. We just saw a car on highway 50 going faster than you are."

Stephan Kollitz
via e-mail

Names Behind the News back to top 

Meet the AVwebFlash Team

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
Mariano Rosales

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.

Aviate. Navigate. Communicate.