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Volume 16, Number 12a
March 22, 2010
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Top News: Companies May Meet in Courtback to top 

Cirrus Aircraft has gone to court to stop a former supplier from allegedly telling other suppliers that Cirrus is headed for bankruptcy. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune Cirrus filed suit Thursday against Grand Rapids, Mich.-based L-3 Communications and also claims L-3 has been encouraging other suppliers to stop doing business with Cirrus. Cirrus wants the court to stop L-3 from contacting suppliers and is also seeking unspecified damages. Cirrus claims that if suppliers act on the alleged advice from L-3, it would be forced out of business and that the bankruptcy allegations could scare off potential customers. L-3 was closed on the weekend and officials could not be reached for comment. The suit is the latest wrinkle in legal wrangling between the two companies that began last May. More...

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
Paying the Piperback to top 

FAA chief Randy Babbitt was in Washington Thursday to explain why the FAA wants $1.14 billion for fiscal 2011. The administrator defended the request to the Transportation and Housing and Urban Development subcommittee, explaining that the move to NextGen involves a "complex series of programs" and inter-related initiatives. If granted, the funding would be a 32-percent increase from fiscal 2010, and only part of the $20 billion that full NextGen implementation is expected to require. The NextGen project is already behind schedule and Committee Chairman John Olver, D-Mass., suggested some of the blame rests with leadership. "Early implementation efforts have been hampered by unclear roles," he said, asking if that had yet been addressed. But there will be other future complications, not the least of which involves how aircraft will come to be equipped and who will pay for it. More...

Compare and Save at the Pilot Insurance Center
Don't pay more for life insurance coverage just because you fly. Contact Pilot Insurance Center to see how you can save. PIC works with A+ rated insurance companies to provide preferred rates for pilots. Call (800) 380-8376 or visit
Policy & Procedureback to top 

The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) has updated its guide explaining the required electronic Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) used by pilots flying into the U.S., with consideration given to suggestions from EAA. The new guide clarifies certain requirements first published in 2008 and adds instruction designed to help pilots deal with real-world complications they may encounter. Added sections include details on what to do if weather or other issues prevent a pilot from arriving at their planned border crossing location, or cause them to miss their planned crossing time. It clarifies what to do when departing from an airport not designated by the CBP as an airport of entry. And it also adds direction for pilots who encounter APIS system problems or, for other reasons, can not provide complete information through the system. Previously, the guide indicated those problems were the sole responsibility of the pilot, regardless of whether the APIS system itself (through an interface or other problem) was at fault. A link to the guide follows after the jump. More...

The Federal Court of Canada has backed flight attendants who refused to work a flight because they believed the pilot was suicidally depressed. It's not clear if the attendants, as part of the ruling, would have to tell passengers on the flight about their motivation to deplane. The court challenge arose when four Air Canada flight attendants in the summer of 2008 refused their assignments after one of them met the flight's pilot. The attendant, Hugh Bouchard, called in sick after the meeting and told another attendant the pilot had, on a previous flight, threatened to fly a plane into the Atlantic, according to the Montreal Gazette. Subsequent investigations found no support for that exact wording, but when the story was shared among the crew three other flight attendants (scheduled to work under Bouchard on the Toronto to Paris flight) also opted out. The airline found a backup crew and the flight went on without additional drama. Legal complications followed. More...

Sixth Annual Archie League Medal of Safety 
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association Proudly Salutes the Winners of the Sixth Annual Archie League Medal of Safety Awards
Named after America's first air traffic controller, these awards honor instances of exceptional skill, professionalism and dedication by our nation's air traffic controllers. From alerting aircraft to dangerous situations in the sky to expertly guiding private aircraft pilots in distress to safe landings, each of these winners has contributed to ensuring the safety of others. Click here to see the 2010 winners.
Aviation Safety Reportback to top 

Three people died in a midair collision near Williston, Fla., on Saturday. Lee Sentman, 73, has been identified as the lone occupant of an aircraft that was arriving at the Williston Airport on a flight from Ocala when it was in collision with an aircraft that was departing Williston. The names of the two occupants of the departing aircraft have not been released. The departing aircraft was identified as a single-engine Piper and the inbound plane was reportedly a homebuilt. More...

AERO Friedrichshafen || Europe's Foremost 
Trade Show for General Aviation
AERO Friedrichshafen Is Europe's Foremost Trade Show for General Aviation
Besides major decision-makers and multipliers of the industry, AERO attracts thousands of aviation enthusiasts each year in the scenic city of Friedrichshafen, Germany — home base of the famous Zeppelins. As a trend-setter and driving force in the industry, AERO not only showcases the entire range of GA products and services, it also offers significant added value in the form of future-oriented supporting events. Go online for complete information.
News Briefsback to top 

The on-again, off-again, on-again, four-plus-one place Seawind 300C has received its flight permit, flown over Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Canada, and is heading for certification, according to company chief, Richard Silva. The aircraft is marketed by Seawind as both "the world's most versatile land plane" and "the world's fastest seaplane." Flight testing will be performed by the National Research Center, Canada, over three months finishing in June, Silva told AVweb. Silva says that, after successful testing, his priorities will shift to production of the first five customer aircraft, and flight tests and certification work with the autopilot. Silva says he has secured funding through certification and is working to set up the next phase for production. He forecasts demand in excess of 120 aircraft per year, looking at amphib pilots alone, but Silva adds that most of his early orders came from non-amphib pilots. More...

An auction in Manhattan on April 13 will feature an annotated checklist used to power down damaged parts of Apollo 13, other space memorabilia and a complete 93-year-old Curtiss MF flying boat. The auction by Bonhams will be held on the 40th anniversary of the oxygen tank explosion that nearly killed three astronauts while they were halfway to the moon and includes notes made by the crew just after the tank blew up, heavily damaging the service module of the spacecraft. The checklist is expected to fetch up to $30,000. The flying boat, a demilitarized version of the F model used by the U.S. Navy, will be on public display starting April 3 at Sculpture Garden Atrium at 590 Madison Ave. More...

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New on AVwebback to top 

It's not often that the crew of a downed airplane is yanked out of the wilderness in under two hours, but that's what the CAP and Bonneville County, Idaho authorities pulled off last week. In his latest post to the AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli notes that the takeaway is to carry appropriate survival gear, which the couple in the Cessna 172 appears not to have done. Read more and add your own comments. More...

Click for larger images
Paul Schafer had a nasty cut on his head but was otherwise hardly hurt in an off-airport landing on a logged-off area of an Oregon mountain. He says he planned for it and that made all the difference. More...

JA Air Center || When It Comes to 
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The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 

AVMAIL: MARCH 22, 2010

Letter of the Week: Light Sport's Future Is Bright As Is

Last week, Larry Stencel submitted a letter entitled "Revamp Light Sport to Save GA."

His letter suggested that the Light Sport movement has failed to be the "last great hope" for aviation. Mr. Stencel's view of the light sport industry is far different than our experience. This letter is submitted on behalf of the owners and managers of Chesapeake Sport Pilot. We opened our doors in January 2007 with one aircraft, two instructors, a handful of students, and a pilot's lounge as a pre-flight/post-flight briefing area. Fast forward to today: We have eight light sport aircraft and seventeen instructors. We have over 60 active students and many more active renters. We built a 6,000-square-foot hangar facility this past fall. All of this was built on the shoulders of light sport aircraft and sport pilots.

The Owners and Management of Chesapeake Sport Pilot

Click through for the rest of CSP's letter from the front lines of LSA — as well as more letters from AVweb readers.


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 What have you heard? More...

AERO EXPO EUROPE 2010 - Prague, 28-30 May 
|| AERO EXPO UK 2010 - London, 25-27 June
Experience AeroExpo Europe, 28-30 May 2010
Europe's Festival of Aviation brings visitors a dedicated weekend of general aviation at its finest. With new features designed to cover as many aspects of general aviation as possible, visitors will have the opportunity to Compare, See, Try and Buy at Europe's Festival of Aviation. Pribram Airfield, LKPM.

Click here for more information.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Aviation Safety is continuing its series on basic flying technique. We've looked at the aerodynamics of coordinated turns. In this video, Paul Bertorelli follows up with a simple rudder exercise that he can't seem to master — but you'll have no trouble with it. More...

Test pilot Graham Tomlinson on March 10, 2010 flies the first F-35B Joint Strike fighter (or JSF), BF-1, at 40 knots on its 40th flight, employing the jet's forward shaft-driven vertical lift fan — look behind the nosegear — and the aft-vectored thrust nozzle. More...

Q: What's the Difference Between a $10,000 Annual and a $2,500 Annual?

Mike Busch and his team of seasoned maintenance professionals are saving their aircraft-owner clients thousands of dollars a year in parts and labor — not to mention hours of hassle — by providing professional maintenance management for owner-flown singles and twins. Learn how they do it.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


Conoco-Phillips WingPoints || Best Rewards 
in the Business

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Blackhawk Aircraft Maintenance at Southern Wisconsin Regional Airport (JVL) in Janesville, Wisconsin.

AVweb reader Bill Foraker tells us how a good FBO is always there for you, even when you don't expect to need them:

I was there ... dropping off a buddy who had just purchased an aircraft. Upon my departure, I had smoke in the cabin of my '58 Comanche, so I returned quickly to the airport. Nick and Joe at Blackhawk are fabulous. They went right to work and corrected my problem, a small hole in my oil pressure line. They had me back in the air and home to Terre Haute that evening. ... If every operation was like this one, we would have a much better aviation community.

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!


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.
Help Us Celebrate AVweb's 15th Anniversaryback to top 

CLICK HERE to Register for All 15 

Win an XM WX Satellite Weather receiver from WxWorx as we continue the celebration of AVweb's 15th Anniversary! All you have to do is click here to enter your name and e-mail address. (You only have to enter once, and you'll be entered in our prize drawings for the entire year — so if you've already entered, you're all set.)

And no, we're not going to rent or sell your name, ever. Tell your friends, and invite them to sign up for AVweb so they can qualify for our 15 Grand Giveaways prize drawings, too. (We won't spam them, either — but we hope they will sign up for our newsletters.)

Deadline for entries is 11:59pm Zulu time April 9, 2010.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.

Congratulations to Colleen Keller of San Diego, California, who won a Garmin 510 aera handheld GPS in our last drawing! (click here to get your own Garmin aera)


The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 


I was flying right seat, giving instruction in a Cessna 210 VFR over New York asking for advisories. The left-seat pilot owned the aircraft and was proficient. After bouncing around with several different controllers, we found one that would talk to us:

NY Approach:
"Squawk 1238."

The left-seat pilot pushed 1-2-3 on the transponder and then stopped and looked at me.

"Did she say '1-2-3-8'?"

"Yes ... ."

Pilot (to NY Control) :
"Did you say '1-2-3-8'?"

NY Approach:
"Yes. Squawk 1238."

(I was laughing.)

"I can't."

NY Approach:
"You can't squawk 1238?"

Pilot (definitively) :
"That's right. I can't."

Ten long seconds went by.

NY Approach:
"Try squawking XXXX. [It was a good number this time.]"

123.8 is a common Philadelphia approach frequency that New York often hands people off to. Of course, there is no 8 on a transponder.

Michael McNamara
via e-mail


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
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.