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Volume 16, Number 34b
August 26, 2010
Spidertracks || The Crash-Proof Aircraft 
Location System That Survives Every Crash - So You Can, Too
Get Spidertracks Aviator, the Aircraft Location System That Survives Every Crash — So You Can, Too
Spidertracks tracks you in real-time and automatically sends SOS alerts within minutes of an accident. Your flights are displayed on the Aviator web site, and your online logbook automatically fills in flight time and distance. You can upload photos, share your flights, "follow" other pilots, and talk flying with other aviators who love flying as much as you do. Get Aviator today — call 1 (800) 491‑2895 or visit
AVflash! Fly Into Edwards AFBback to top 
Sponsor Announcement
European Aviation Asset Management 
Conference || September 9, 2010 || Reykjavik, Iceland || Register Now
NOTE: Due to technical difficulties, our Thursday issue is a little later than you might usually expect it. Thanks for waiting.

The dry lakebed at Edwards Air Force Base in California has seen lots of aviation history in the making, and on Oct. 1 another first will take place there -- a fly-in for general aviation aircraft. Just 100 pilots will be drawn by lottery to land on the 21-square-mile Rosamond Dry Lake, which has been the site of aviation research and testing for more than 50 years. Historic events at Edwards include the Bell X-1 tests that first broke the sound barrier and the first landings of the space shuttle. Pilots can enter the lottery online, but must meet strict criteria, including a minimum of 200 hours of flight time, liability insurance, and a background check. Only single- and twin-engine GA aircraft are permitted, no jets, gliders, LSAs or helicopters; warbirds will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Pilots must be prepared for high and gusty winds, and must be willing to land on dry packed mud. Click here to review the requirements and enter; the drawing will be held Sept. 10, but due to the overwhelming response, applications for most pilots must be in by 5 p.m. California time on Thursday, Aug. 26. More...

Related Content:

Lightspeed Aviation || Change Your Mind
Are You Ready to Move Up to a Zulu?
Then your wait is over. Thanks to Lightspeed's greatly expanded trade-up program, you may be able to move up to the quietest, most comfortable headset in the world. No matter what brand you're currently flying with. This offer is available only through Lightspeed Aviation direct. To learn more about the Zulu and check the "tradeworthiness" of your current headset, just go to
Doors, Design and Diligenceback to top 

Responding to "several reports of the rear passenger door departing the airplane in flight" the FAA Wednesday published proposed rules for owners of certain Diamond aircraft models. "Several reports" appears to translate to 31, according to the FAA, and affected models are DA40 and DA40F airplanes. The FAA is proposing to change the models' "emergency open doors procedure" via temporary revision to the aircrafts' flight manuals and apply an "improved design" to an open door retention mechanism on some aircraft. The physical change required for door retaining brackets would affect 428 airplanes in the U.S. registry at an estimated cost of $245 per aircraft. But that change does not affect the door locking mechanism, itself, which Diamond says appears to be fine ... so long as pilots actually close the door. More...

E-Z Ladder from Aircraft Spruce
E-Z Fuel Ladder Available at Aircraft Spruce
The E-Z Fuel Ladder is rated Type 1 with a working load of 300 lbs. Sturdy aluminum sides and steps are reinforced with zinc-plated steel diagonal braces and fastened with heavy-duty steel rivets and bolts, yet the ladder weighs only 14 lbs. Super-tough co-polymer top tool tray doubles as a leg rest and knee support for added stability and safety. Call 1 (877) 4‑SPRUCE or visit
Destination: Wayyy Up Thereback to top 

Felix Baumgartner is working to break the longstanding freefall record by jumping from a balloon gondola at the edge of space later this year, and this week Red Bull said it has developed a "flying video production studio" to capture the event for live streaming over the Internet. When the current record was set, 50 years ago this month, USAF Col. (Ret.) Joe Kittinger documented his jump from 102,800 feet using spring-wound motion-picture cameras warmed by hot-water bottles. The Red Bull Stratos capsule will be equipped with nine high-definition cameras, three 4K digital cinematography cameras and three high-resolution digital still cameras. The outside cameras are in pressurized housings designed to protect them from the near-vacuum air pressure, ice and extreme heat of the stratospheric conditions. Baumgartner also will carry three small cameras attached to his space suit. The launch date will be announced within a few weeks, the team said on Wednesday. More...

A Danish team of space enthusiasts has built a rocket that they hope will carry humans into suborbital space, and they plan to launch it on Monday, Aug. 30, with a test dummy. If all goes well, they will launch again soon with an astronaut on board to experience parabolic flight to the edge of space, about 62 miles above the surface of the Earth. The "micro-size" minimalist single-place spacecraft will launch on top of a booster rocket from a launch tower in the Baltic Sea. As the booster uses up its fuel, it will be jettisoned, and the capsule will continue to ascend and achieve zero-g as it reaches its apogee, then descend beneath a trio of parachutes for a water landing. The goal, the team leaders say, is to provide access to space for adventure tourism as well as commercial and scientific purposes. More...

Avemco Insurance Company
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Aviation Safetyback to top 

Alejandro Maclean, a pilot in the Red Bull Air Races since 2005, died last week while practicing for an airshow in his native Spain. The airplane slammed into the ground during a maneuver and Maclean was killed instantly, according to a spokesman for the Casarrubios del Monte air field, near Madrid, where the accident occurred. Maclean, who twice won aerobatic championships in Spain, had placed as high as fifth in the Red Bull races. He was known for an aggressive style of flying and was a pioneer in air-race fitness, working to lose over 40 pounds in 2007 to help gain fractions of a second in high-G turns. He started flying in ultralights at age 18, and had survived two other accidents in his career. Maclean was 41 years old, and leaves his wife, Emma, and two children, age 7 and 12. More...

Take the 'Dreading the Weather' Safety 
Quiz || AOPA Air Safety Foundation (ASF)
Do You Have What It Takes to Be a Safe Pilot?
Challenge yourself with the Air Safety Foundation Safety Quiz, underwritten by the AOPA Insurance Agency.

Quiz Topic: Dreading the Weather
In the age of Google, we're still using coded weather that dates to the teletype era. However, pilots still need to be able to decode this ancient form of communication. Click here to take the quiz.
What You Missed in AVwebBiz This Weekback to top 

The FAA is planning to bring pilots and air traffic controllers together to share information after near midair collisions to help develop better strategies for prevention, according to a report in Tuesday's Wall Street Journal. United Airlines is expected to be the first airline to participate in the project. Currently, pilot and controller reports are analyzed independently. The FAA will also consider possible changes in training for air-traffic controllers and will explore new ways to encourage controllers and their supervisors to report mistakes voluntarily and avoid punishment, according to the Journal. A series of recent close encounters prompted an FAA review of the current procedures. More...

Arizona may be planning to take a chapter out of California's regulatory textbook and that could lead to significant extra costs for flight schools. National Association of Flight Instructors President Jason Blair says Arizona officials are meeting Thursday to discuss the regulation of flight instructors and flight schools. A similar meeting by California officials some time ago that lead to AB48, a hugely unpopular measure that will require flight schools to pay significant registration fees and prove financial viability through a debt-to-equity formula. The California law could lead to school closures and increased training costs and Blair says NAFI is afraid the same thing will happen in Arizona. "As a state that has a significant number of flight training providers, we're concerned about the chilling effect those fees may have on those businesses," Blair said. "We're encouraging our members in that state to get involved in this issue, so we don't have a repeat of the California situation." California legislators say the move is needed to protect flight students from unscrupulous operators but some aviation businesses have dismissed it as a ploy to raise revenue. More...


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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.

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Coming Soon - Telex Aviation Ascend 
Ascend to New Heights
Engineered from the ground up, the all-new Ascend headset by Telex is finely tuned to provide superior performance in a bold new design.

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

A letter to the editor on Monday by Chuck Leathers suggesting increased regulation for radio-controlled models in light of the collision between a large RC model and a biplane earlier this month has caused a lot of discussion. Where do you stand?

Plus: Last week, we asked whether a recent string of air show accidents and incidents indicated performances were becoming unsafe and should be discontinued. You can probably guess which side of the issue most AVweb readers came down on, but click through to see the numbers. 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 What have you heard? More...

Over 18,000 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.
Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

The first (and understandable) reaction is to decry another sellout of an American business. On the AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli says he gets that — but for those who reach for the emotional high notes about how awful such deals are, here's a question: What's the alternative when no Western buyers come forth? Read more and chime in with your own thoughts at the blog. More...

Light Plane Maintenance Toolbox CD
Is Your A&P Keeping Secrets?
Learn to recognize maintenance issues and take action before they turn into something big. The Light Plane Maintenance Toolbox shows you how.

Click here to order now.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Aviation Consumer's Jeff Van West got water up his nose as he practiced exiting an aircraft that has sunk and flipped over. It was quite a ride. More...

Avidyne has a slide-in replacement for the STEC-55X autopilots common to Cirrus SR20s and SR22s. Aviation Consumer's Jeff Van West took it up for a flight to the claims of improved performance and new safety features. More...

Peter Drucker Says,
"The Best Way to Predict the Future Is to Create It"

It's easy for your company to be more proactive, flexible, and entrepreneurial with AVweb's cost-effective marketing programs. Discover the benefits of instant response, quick copy changes, monthly tracking reports, and interactive programs. To find out how simple it is to reach 255,000 qualified pilots, owners, and decision-makers weekly, click now for details.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


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

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Landmark Aviation at Asheville Regional Airport (KAVL) in Asheville, North Carolina.

AVweb reader Tahj Kraus told us about this Landmark location:

I spent three weeks coming and going out of KAVL. Initially I was hesitant to stay there, but thought I'd try out Landmark. Rebecca and Paul made my stay so enjoyable and comfortable that I ended up feeling like part of the family — a home away from home. Even though I'm just an avgas burner, they still made me feel like royalty!

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!


Help Us Celebrate AVweb's 15th Anniversaryback to top 

CLICK HERE to Register for All 15 

Our 15th anniversary celebration continues, with a second chance to win a Bose Aviation Headset X! All you have to do is click here to enter your name and email 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, September 3, 2010.

Click here to read the contest rules and enter.

Congratulations to Roger Newcomb of Austin, TX, who won our last drawing, for a Spidertrack Aviator! (click here to get your own from Spidertracks)


Reader-Submitted Photosback to top 

We knew we were in trouble this week when we the first five photos we downloaded from the electronic submission box went directly into the "maybe top photo" pile. Picking a winner was tough, but the photos we've got to share with you are outstanding, even by our usual high standards. When all was said and done, Isaac Adler of Kalamazoo, Michigan nudged out the nearest competitor by combining a great airplane and unusual photo op. Isaac and the Yankee Air Museum B-17 seen here were both at Pontiac Airport in Waterford while storms were battering Oshkosh during the opening hours of AirVenture. When a sudden downpour surprised everyone, Isaac grabbed his camera to get some shots of the rain against a sunny blue sky and couldn't pass up this shot. 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
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.