AVwebFlash Complete Issue: Volume 16, Number 31b

August 5, 2010

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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AVflash! FAA and Safety back to top 
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FAA Funding Bill Changes Pilot Requirements

As Congress was heading out the door last weekend for a six-week break, both houses approved an FAA bill (PDF) that extends funding for the agency only for the next two months, but they tacked on some provisions that affect pilot certification. The bill requires that every pilot flying for a commercial airline must hold an ATP certificate, effectively increasing the minimum requirement from 250 flight hours to 1,500, effective three years after the bill is enacted. The bill also requires the FAA to implement NTSB recommendations related to training for Part 121 pilots, including stall and upset recovery training. The FAA must review research on fatigue and mandate new flight and duty time rules for pilots within a year. Also, the bill says the FAA must create a database with a comprehensive training record for every pilot and require airlines to offer remedial training to pilots if needed. Laura Brown, spokeswoman for the FAA, told AVweb on Tuesday her agency is currently reviewing the bill and has no comment yet on its implications.

Chris Dancy, AOPA spokesman, told AVweb the GA pilots who will be affected most by the bill are those who are in training for Part 121 careers. "It will obviously mean more time as a flight instructor or a freight dog, or any of the other ways future airline pilots build time," he said. The safety measures have largely been driven by reaction to last year's Colgan Air crash in Buffalo. FAA funding will continue at present levels until Sept. 30, with no extra funding specified for NextGen. The FAA has been operating on short-term funding for about three years. The Helicopter Association International said it appears likely that the Sept. 30 deadline will be reached without any agreement on a new long-term funding bill, and the process will have to start all over in the next session.

FAA To Cessna Drivers: Check For Water In Fuel

The FAA says pilots of Cessna 100-, 200-, and 300-series airplanes should intensify their efforts to check for water in the fuel before every flight. "All pilots, owners, operators, maintenance, and service personnel of these type airplanes should assume some water exists in the fuel tank system," the FAA said in a Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin posted last week. Water may enter the fuel system via any penetration in the tank, or it may come out of solution in the fuel and settle or adhere to the inside of the tank walls. The bulletin recommends that owners should ensure the airplanes have plenty of drains at a variety of locations, and check them prior to every flight, taking at least one cup of fuel from each location.

The FAA also suggests that fuel filler caps should be the raised umbrella-style type that shed water, and airplanes should be stored indoors when possible. Pilots should keep the tanks full, know their fuel suppliers and monitor the fueling procedures. The bulletin provides guidance and education but compliance is not mandatory. The complete text of the SAIB, including more details and suggestions for annual and 100-hour inspections, is available online.

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Downturn Debriefing back to top 

GA Aircraft Sales Down 10 Percent From Last Year

In the first half of this year, sales of general aviation aircraft are down 10 percent compared to the first half of last year, the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) reported on Wednesday. Last year, 1,039 aircraft were sold in the first six months, compared to 937 this year. Billings, however, were up 0.2 percent, totaling $9.40 billion in the second quarter of 2010.  This is the second consecutive quarter that industry billings have risen, GAMA said. "As general aviation manufacturers continue looking towards recovery from the economic downturn, it remains critical that pro-growth, pro-manufacturing policies like bonus depreciation that promote aircraft purchases and stimulate job creation be put in place," said GAMA CEO Pete Bunce.  "As the global economic recovery picks up steam, markets outside of North America continue to hold promise for renewed growth in our industry."

Piston-powered airplane shipments totaled 425 units compared to 434 units delivered in the first half of 2009, a 2.1 percent decrease. Turboprop shipments declined 17.8 percent from 191 units in the first six months last year, to 157 units in 2010. Business jet shipments totaled 355 units, a 14.3 percent decrease over the 414 units delivered during this same period in 2009. The full shipment report can be found at GAMA's website.

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Anything Can Happen back to top 

Paris In Miami? Maybe In 2012

With a growing aerospace industry and a location that provides access to the Latin American market, an economic development group in Florida hopes to bring a major commercial airshow similar to the one in Paris to Miami every other year. Airbus has moved its Latin America and Caribbean sales team from France to Miami, and trains about 2,000 crew members at a center there each year. The Miami show could attract small and medium-size companies that can't get to Paris, and would also be attractive to the U.S. military, said Frank Nero, CEO of The Beacon Council, an economic development group working for Dade County. The show could launch as soon as 2012, though "there are still many hurdles," Nero told the Miami Herald.

Aviation accounts for almost 25 percent of Dade County's total economy, according to the Herald. The international airshow could be held in Homestead, just outside Miami, and is considered a key initiative of the development group.

Former NetJets Boss Santulli Is Back

Richard Santulli left his position as CEO of NetJets Inc. one year ago and announced Wednesday that he will head a new aviation company. Santulli's Milestone Aviation Group is setting its legs behind a $500 million investment, a few key former NetJets employees, and a plan to buy new and used jets and helicopters, which it then plans to lease. Santulli's position is chairman, while the company's president, Daniel Rosenthal, is a former NetJets vice president; its CEO, William Kelly, was the head of NetJets Europe; and a host of other former NetJets employees make up Milestone's leadership. The new company is based in Dublin, Ireland, but has an office in Columbus, Ohio, which is also the home of NetJets. That said, Milestone is not designed to compete with NetJets.

Milestone is seeking to fill the needs of those who need aircraft but have been unable to acquire 100-percent financing from lenders or quick approval from lenders, according to the Columbus Business Journal. The company says it will be looking beyond a potential client's balance sheet to make financing (and aircraft) available to companies with solid flight departments and structure. Santulli's new company has just 10 employees, but does have plans to grow.

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They're Not Getting Any Younger back to top 

School Launches Aging Aircraft Maintenance Site

A new website has been developed that aims to provide one-stop shopping for general aviation maintenance information and, specifically, for help maintaining aging aircraft. Wichita State University's National Institute for Aviation Research has developed the Aging General Aviation Education & Training website to provide information to the general aviation community through an extensive searchable database of maintenance documents and training materials. The site hopes to help users identify potential type-specific problems, offers links to outside resources and includes recommended training and education materials for pilots, mechanics and avionics technicians. It also offers a growing collection of "war stories."

The war stories are selected articles that help define a maintenance concern and expose it for the benefit of other pilots and mechanics. Users can contribute their own war stories or browse a collection specific to their type. Other site resources include links to FAA documents (Advisory Circulars, Airworthiness Directives, NPRMs, etc.) along with links to type clubs and more. Find the Aging General Aviation Education & Training website here.

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What You Missed in AVwebBiz This Week back to top 

Flight School Closes, 60 Chinese Students Affected

About 60 Chinese student pilots face an uncertain future after the abrupt closure of a London, Ontario flight school that took their $55,000 tuition up front and was evicted from its facilities for non-payment of rent before training was complete. The London Free Press says some of the students are also facing eviction from their apartments because accommodation was included in the fee paid to Maylan Flight Academy, which was forced from its premises more than a month ago. The students are still flying. They were transferred to another school at the London Airport and so far their lessons have been covered by Maylan. But the other school, Blue Bird Flight Academy, trains only private pilots and the Chinese students were promised multi-IFR tickets.

Maylan has not declared bankruptcy and is still considered solvent but its 15 aircraft have been secured and an interim receiver has been named to try to sort out the financial mess. In the meantime, students are worried the huge financial investment, often raised through contributions from family and friends, has been lost. "It's big money in China," said 23-year-old Bravo Chen, one of the students. Maylan is owned by Chinese-Canadian businessman Davi Joe. Those interviewed by the Free Press said they've had no recent contact with Joe and the newspaper was also not able to reach him. Tom Lawson, who owns the Maylan building and sold a 60-percent stake in his business, Empire Aviation, to Joe to start Maylan, told the newspaper there is concern for the students. "We wanted to protect the students, we wanted the business to succeed," he said.

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AVwebBiz: AVweb's Business Aviation Newsletter

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

Question of the Week: A Vision for EAA's New President

EAA has picked a new president, and AVweb asked Rod Hightower what his vision was for the next five years. You can view his response here, and we encourage you to have a look before you reply. We've given some options below but realize this might not be a classic multiple-choice question so feel free to expand your thoughts in a letter to the editor at editor@avweb.com. We'll feature the letters that represent a cross-section of points of views in our Monday AVwebFlash.

What should be EAA president Rod Hightower's vision for EAA for the next five years?
(click to answer)

Last Week's Question: Results

Want to see the current breakdown of responses? Take a moment to answer the question yourself, and then you can view real-time results.

What's On Your Mind?

Have an idea for a new "Question of the Week"?
Send your suggestions to .

NOTE: This address is only for suggested "QOTW" questions, and not for "QOTW" answers or comments. (Use this form to send "QOTW" comments to our AVmail Editor.)

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.

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Opinion & Commentary back to top 

AVweb Insider Blog: Flight Students Need Protection

Student pilots have lost hundreds of millions of dollars to unscrupulous flight schools. Now California is trying stop it, and AVweb editor-in-chief Russ Niles asks the obvious question, "What's wrong with that?"

Read more and add your own thoughts at the AVweb Insider blog.

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AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

EAA AirVenture 2010 Complete Coverage Round-Up

Looking for coverage of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2010?

Click here for all news stories from AirVenture. And our AVwebAudio newsletter has the complete run-down of this year's multimedia coverage:

Want to get AVwebAudio in your inbox every Friday? Just log in to AVweb (or create a free account in the upper right corner of this page) and visit AVweb.com/profile. Choose "Update E-mail Subscriptions" in the profile center, and from there, you can add or drop any AVweb newsletters.

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Help Us Celebrate AVweb's 15th Anniversary back to top 

15 Years and Now 15 Grand Giveaways ... It's Your Chance to Win a Spidertracks Aviator

CLICK HERE to Register for All 15 Drawings

Win a Spidertracks Aviator 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 Friday, August 6, 2010.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.

Congratulations to Lukasz Shaded of Atlanta, GA, who won a Zaon PCAS XRX in our last drawing! (click here to get your own from Zaon)

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Your Favorite FBOs back to top 

FBO of the Week: Wisconsin Aviation at Dodge County Airport (KUNU, Juneau, WI)

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

Conoco-Phillips WingPoints || Under Our Wings, Reward Yourself a Latte || Click to Get Your 

We heard from many readers who were diverted on their journey to Oshkosh this week and discovered other FBOs along the way. The most popular FBO we heard about, though was Wisconsin Aviation at Dodge County Airport (KUNU) in Juneau, Wisconsin.

Jon Dean was the first to bring this FBO to our attention:

When over 190 aircaft arrived un-planned thanks to the closure of OSH for arrivals, Tim and his team (Mary and Josh) were truly amazing. They got everyone tied down, allowed us all to camp, got transport, helped with finding food — Domino's actually delivered to my plane on the far side of the field! — made coffee, and organised shower and head facilities. And with all this, they levied no charges at all, just the regular top off with gas! ... They then helped organize transport for all of us stranded there to get to OSH some 45 nm north.

The best part of this story? Most of the readers who told us about Wisconsin Aviation have already made plans to fly into KUNU next year as part of their AirVenture pilgrimage!

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!

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Reader-Submitted Photos back to top 

Picture of the Week: AVweb's Flying Photography Showcase

Submit a Photo | Rules | Tips | Questions | Past Winners

Each week, we go through dozens (and sometimes hundreds) of reader-submitted photos and pick the very best to share with you on Thursday mornings. The top photos are featured on AVweb's home page, and one photo that stands above the others is awarded an AVweb baseball cap as our "Picture of the Week." Want to see your photo on AVweb.com? Click here to submit it to our weekly contest.


medium | large

copyright © Ryan Grantonic
Used with permission

The Super Bug

... And we're back! AirVenture Oshkosh was a blast, but if there's one thing that can take the edge off coming home from our favorite trip of the year, it's finding photos like today's "Picture of the Week" waiting in our submission box.

Ryan Grantonic of Dayton, Ohio has been a regularly submitter this year, but this simple, elegant shot is the one that put him into our top slot.

medium | large

Used with permission of Isaac Adler

Tired 150

Isaac Adler of Kalamazoo, Michigan is another contributor we've come to watch for this year — and we'll have a nice complement to this overworked panel from Donald Laffranchi in this week's slideshow, so watch for it, too. ;)

medium | large

Used with permission of Shawna Nelson

"Though I Fly Through the Valley of Death, I Shall Fear No Evil — For I Am at 80,000 Feet and Climbing"

"I love flying!" declared Shawna Nelson of Marysville, Washington in the comments section of this submission. She snapped the photo while "flying wtih my uncle in his Alpha Jet" — which only serves to remind us that our uncle doesn't have any jets!

Wait — we're not talking about our common Uncle Sam, are we, Shawna?

medium | large

Used with permission of William Morgan

Marvin Mainliner

We admit it: We're starting to miss having all those DC-3s parked a quick stroll away from the mobile office at Oshkosh. So we selected this cleverly color-manipulated shot from William Morgan of Seattle, Washington to recreate the experience here in the home office.


Yeah, it's a nice photo — but somehow it's just not the same.

medium | large

copyright © Charles Capaldi
Used with permission

New Hope on Mobile Bay (Alabama)

It's a lovely photo to sign off with, that's for sure — one made even more lovely, we're told, by the fact it was snapped July 15, "the first day the oil flow [from Deepwater Horizon] was stopped since April."

Submitter Charles Capaldi of Grand Bay, Alabama also wrote, "We hope the oil is cleaned up so we can enjoy this plane to the fullest. (By the way, it's a CGS Hawk Arrow 2 on puddle-jumper floats.)"

We'll have more brand-new reader photos for you in the slideshow on AVweb's home page Thursday morning. Don't miss 'em!

Click here to submit your own photos to "POTW."

A quick note for submitters: If you've got several photos that you feel are "POTW" material, your best bet is to submit them one-a-week! That gives your photos a greater chance of seeing print on AVweb, and it makes the selection process a little easier on us, too. ;)

A Reminder About Copyrights:
Please take a moment to consider the source of your image before submitting to our "Picture of the Week" contest. If you did not take the photo yourself, ask yourself if you are indeed authorized to release publication rights to AVweb. If you're uncertain, consult the POTW Rules or or send us an 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.