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Piper will be delivering the first copy of its own PiperSport light sport aircraft at Sun 'n Fun on Tuesday afternoon.
The airplane has been tweaked a bit from the SportCruiser model by Czech Sport Aircraft that the company adopted. Besides the fresh paint job, Piper's version of the LSA includes a beefed-up nosegear,
a BRS chute as standard, a sunshade for those Florida summers, and adjustments to the pitch control, Jackie Carlon, Piper's marketing director, told AVweb on Monday. "We've also made the
leather interior a standard feature, as well as the dual Dynon avionics," she said. Piper promises to have more news at a press conference on Tuesday morning.
The PiperSport was introduced at the U.S. Sport Aviation Expo at Sebring, Fla., in January. The airplanes will continue to be
built in the Czech Republic under a licensing agreement with Piper. The airplane is being sold in three models: the basic PiperSport at $119,900, the training-oriented LT at $129,900, and the fully
decked-out LTD at $139,900. All are powered by the Rotax 912, which will run on premium unleaded mogas as well as 100LL. AVweb editorial director Paul Bertorelli took a test flight in the
airplane; click here for the video report.
FIND THEM AT:
Cessna Tents SNF-001 SNF-002 SNF-004 SNF-005
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.
The folks at Flight Design must be feeling some impact of the down economy, but it hasn't slowed them down much. They are here at Sun 'n
Fun, busy as ever, and with a list of new stuff to entice light sport buyers. Now they are offering floats for their fleet, as well as a "show special" value package -- several popular options for
the CTLS, including the Garmin 695, Artex ELT 406, and leather seats, included at no extra charge. The company also continues its efforts to attract new pilots, with three new Flight Design Pilot
Centers coming online around the U.S. They have also developed a two-day training syllabus to help improve transition training for experienced pilots who are switching to LSAs. "It's about five hours
of flying, and a good introduction to what's different about flying and owning light sport planes, for pilots who might be switching over from other kinds of aircraft," John Gilmore, a company
spokesman, told AVweb.
On Tuesday, the Flight Design crew was busy getting ready an example of their CTLS-Lite, being shown here at Sun 'n Fun for the first time. The model has a lower price, by $20,000, than the
standard model, as well as more useful load. Gilmore promised to have more updates later in the week. He also said that more new projects are in the works, some of which might be ready for the market
by Oshkosh. A CT model with a high-lift wing is one item expected soon, as well as a Rotax 914 turbocharged option.
FIND THEM AT:
Top Pick EFB by Aviation Consumer: ChartBook, Again! FlightPrep ChartBook EFB wins "Top Pick" again with the call-outs "best 3D, simple, big buttons, highly configurable, fast rendering." Dedicated Charts and IP
(instrument procedures) buttons make using the system easy and intuitive. Our Exclusive Flight Definition display upgrade gives you improved brightness, clarity, contrast and freedom from glare.
Includes standard solid state disk, too. Add XM Wx or traffic awareness when you're ready. Demo ChartBook yourself in Hangar B, Booths 36 and 37 at Sun 'n Fun or buy online at
Spot, a hand-held satellite GPS messaging unit, is now shipping in its latest version, distribution manager Greg Wilkinson told AVweb on Monday. The new version is smaller than the original unit,
weighing in at only 5.2 ounces, with added features. The Spot taps in to the company's own global satellite network which covers most of the
world's surface. It can transmit tracking information to the company's Web site, where others can follow a traveler's progress. A message function will send e-mails to up to 10 addresses to announce
that you have departed on a flight. The unit also has an SOS/911 feature that sends an distress signal that is received at the company's emergency center in Houston.
The new units originally began shipping in October, but Spot then initiated a "product return program" asking buyers to return all of the units for replacement. According to the Spot Web site,
"During recent testing, we discovered that these SPOT 2 devices may not meet battery and messaging operating specifications. We were not 100% satisfied with the performance of this unit." Units
shipping now are not affected by the recall.
FIND THEM AT:
Aspen Avionics' "Power Your Panel" Rebate
Choose the Evolution Package that suits your needs and budget. Now is the time to buy with Aspen's "Power Your Panel" Rebate offer through June 30,
The executive director of the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) has been released from a Michigan jail after he was arrested earlier this month on a charge of embezzlement of
between $20,000 and $50,000. The charge relates to Blair's term as manager of the Hastings Barry County Airport in Michigan from 2007 to 2009. On the advice of his lawyer, Blair declined comment on
the case when contacted by AVweb. He was arrested April 2 by the Alleghan City Police and taken to the Barry County Jail. He was released after posting a $5,000 cash surety. He continues in his
role at NAFI, according to EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski.
Knapinski said the matter is under investigation in Michigan and the local district attorney has not yet decided on whether to proceed with the charges. Knapinski told AVweb his
understanding of the case is that it resulted from a "contractual dispute" at the airport. NAFI is affiliated with EAA but has its own board of directors. Blair has been the executive director since
Investigators so far have found no mechanical problems with the Tupolev 154 that crashed on Saturday, killing the president of Poland and 95 others, but they are now looking into reports that
various VIPs, either on the airplane or elsewhere, may have put pressure on the flight crew to attempt a landing despite the weather. The airplane was attempting to land in thick fog at a military
airfield at Smolensk, in western Russia, when it crashed, although air traffic controllers had warned the crew about the airport conditions and advised them to land elsewhere. The passengers were en
route to a memorial service to honor Polish soldiers who had been executed by Soviet secret police in 1940. If the flight had diverted, the service would have been delayed, according to CTV News. Many of those on board were high-ranking Polish officials.
The airplane was operated by the ministry of national defense of the Republic of Poland, according to Pravda,
specifically for the transportation of top officials.
Pravda also said the military airfield uses a different instrument landing system than civil airfields, and the fight crew may have been more accustomed to the civil procedures. A Yak-40 with
journalists on board landed safely at Smolensk just before the Tu-154; however, a military Il-76 diverted to a Moscow airport, Pravda said. "It is worthy of note that the Il-76 was piloted by a very
experienced pilot who was very familiar with the area," according to Pravda. Although the airplane doesn't appear to have been a factor, fatal crashes in Tu-154s have occurred at least nine times in
the last 10 years, according to the Associated Press. The airplane was built
during the Soviet era, said Viktor Baranets, a military journalist quoted by Pravda. "More than half of the civil planes in Poland were made in the USSR," Baranets said. "Many of them had to have
their engines replaced several times already. ... Tu-154 planes crashed in Poland twice. Both crashes were caused because of poor repairs."
FIND THEM AT:
C-092 C-093 C-094 C-095
AV8OR Special Pricing Pairs Technology, Affordability
The Bendix/King by Honeywell AV8OR Handheld Multi-Function Display (MFD) is now available at a reduced price through August 31. Powerful and versatile in the air and on the ground, the AV8OR guides
you on your drive to the airport, then delivers airborne weather and navigation in the cockpit, and even keeps you entertained with powerful multimedia capabilities. Designed by pilots, for pilots,
the AV8OR is ready to fly and has never been more affordable.
Learn more at
John Burton talks with AVweb's Mary Grady about the highlights and new events coming up this week at Sun 'n Fun and shares some of the behind-the-scenes considerations and planning that go
into creating the Sun 'n Fun show every year.
Opening Day of Sun 'n Fun Is Bringing a Very Important Announcement from Lightspeed
Come by our booth for details about the Lightspeed Aviation Foundation that will help support a select group of charities nominated by the aviation community. Also, find out about Lightspeed's
hot Sun 'n Fun Zulu special running April 13-18 at the show. Can't make the show? The special's also available through any Lightspeed dealer nationwide.
Learn more at
On a cold Thursday morning 15 months ago, Jeff Skiles was just another anonymous first officer making a routine flight from LaGuardia to Charlotte. By the end of the day, he was a household name.
Paul Bertorelli met and spoke with Skiles at AEA and reflects on how fame has(n't)
affected him on the AVweb Insider blog.
Fly with the Acclaimed Aviation Headset X®
Enjoy an unmatched combination of full-spectrum noise reduction, clearer audio, and comfortable fit with the Bose® Aviation Headset X. Voted the #1 headset for the ninth consecutive year in
Professional Pilot's 2009 Headset Preference Survey.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.
FIND THEM AT:
C-024 C-025 C-026 N-036
As Vital As Vision
Never fly blind again when you sign up today for one of XM WX Satellite Weather's Aviator LT, Aviator, or Aviator Pro data packages. Enhance your situational awareness with products like
Radar, Lightning, Winds, and more when you make XM WX a permanent part of your cockpit today. Come see the latest from XM WX Satellite Weather at booth C-024 during Sun 'n Fun 2010 or
visit us online at
Win Scheyden Dual RX frames and Flight Crew Ensemble flight gear as we celebrate our 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 30, 2010.
Fly Away for As Little As $83,495
... in a tri-gear or taildragger SLSA. The Kitfox Super Sport is a proven design, made in the USA for 26 years. It's at home at the FBO, in the back country, on floats or skis, and everywhere
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AVweb was on-hand for the 2010 Aircraft Electronics Association show in Orlando, Florida. Here's an overview of our video coverage (with individual links), and you can click here for an index of our complete 2010 coverage in one place.
Don't see a video screen?
Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
If that doesn't work, click here to view this playlist directly on YouTube.
Watch all of our AEA 2010 videos in the player above or click these thumbnails for individual videos:
Something New Your Garmin Can Do
Now you Can fly an approach in real time on your Garmin 696, 496, 396 or 296.
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:
Publisher Timothy Cole
Editorial Director, Aviation Publications Paul Bertorelli
Editor-in-Chief Russ Niles
Contributing Editors Mary Grady Glenn Pew
Features Editor Kevin Lane-Cummings
Webmaster Scott Simmons
Contributors Jeff van West Mariano Rosales
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