AVwebFlash - Volume 17, Number 12a

March 21, 2011

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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AVflash! "Any Crew Could Have Flown It" back to top 

Boeing's New 747 Flies

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Boeing flew its newest airplane for the first time on Sunday but casual observers would be excused from noticing the importance of the event. The 747-8 Intercontinental lifted off smoothly from Everett, Washington's Paine Field for a four-hour and 26-minute flight that ended at Boeing Field in Seattle. Test pilot Capt. Paul Stemer summarized the first flight of the familiar airframe by noting that "any 747-400 crew could have gone and flown this airplane." Nevertheless, the airplane does put some additional pressure on Airbus as Boeing's "new" 747 takes direct aim at the "when is this going to end?" segment of the airliner market with a range of 8,000 nm with a full load of 467 passengers.

Of course, it's all about efficiency in the airline market and the 747-8I's GEnx-2B67 engines squeeze every mile out of the 333,000-pound fuel load. Boeing has also borrowed heavily from the 787 for cockpit and creature comforts so it's not quite a standard 747. Boeing says the transition won't be a big one for those used to the upstairs cockpit. The company is predicting a three-day training transition for those with 747 type ratings.

Bose® A20™ Aviation Headset
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Is Your (N-)Number Up? back to top 

Re-Registration Deadline Looms

The first wave of aircraft registrations set to expire under the FAA's new re-registration drive are reaching their deadline -- March 31, 2011 -- and the FAA is encouraging affected owners to re-register online, now. If you own an aircraft, you will have to re-register sometime within the next three years. The first group targeted for the $5 fee and paperwork are those owners holding registration certificates issued in March of any year prior to 2010. Owners have a three month window to file re-registration applications, a timeframe that has shrunk to weeks for the first wave. You should be receiving a reminder from the FAA when your time approaches. The FAA has provided online tools to help you check when your turn will come and to help you through the process. Don't do it too early and don't do it too late.

The notification you should receive from the FAA provides a code for online re-registration. Find the FAA's frequently asked questions page, here. That page offers direct links and descriptions to help you through the process whether you have that code in hand, or not. A broader re-registration page here includes more links for more intricate situations. Otherwise, if you're prepared with your code in hand, and the calendar puts you within your re-registration window, proceed directly to the FAA's re-registration/renewal page. The FAA says it anticipated the increased workload of the re-registration process and applications received within the three-month window should be processed in a timely manner. Applications submitted late will be processed "as soon as possible" but may be completed after the certificate expires. The program exists as an attempt to improve the accuracy of the registry.

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Diamond's Star Hitched to D-Jet back to top 

Diamond's Future Contingent On Loan?

Diamond Aircraft's president, Peter Mauer, is making it sound like the future of the company may be hanging on a $35 million Canadian loan that, as of Friday, may or may not be coming. The loan would help launch production of Diamond's D-Jet, save 200 jobs and create 500 more in London, Ontario, where the unemployment rate is currently near 8.5 percent. Roughly half of Diamond's workforce is currently dedicated to the jet, which has amassed more than 230 firm orders. According to Mauer, without the jet the company's debts would be "very difficult to satisfy" based on depressed piston sales. And "I'll let you do the extrapolation," he told the Financial Post.

Diamond has gathered $20 million in private funds and an additional $35 million from the Ontario government. But the Ontario money is contingent on Diamond securing the separate $35 million Canadian loan. According to Mauer, "The federal level is the very last piece in the puzzle." If the loan is approved and added to previously committed funds, it would bring the total Ontario and federal government investment to $100 million. A spokeswoman for the Canadian government said last week that a decision is pending.

Related Content:

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Profit Amid the Pandemonium back to top 

Japan Exodus Puts Premium On BizJets

The nuclear crisis in Japan has some companies pulling staff from the island nation in droves and some private jet companies may not only be cashing in on the business, but increasing prices. COO of Hong Kong Jet, Jackie Wu, told Reuters Wednesday, "Yesterday, a charter plane from Tokyo to Australia, one way, was quoted at $265,000, up 20 percent." Wu said he'd received a request to fly 14 people from Tokyo to Hong Kong and charged a 26-percent premium. Some of the companies working the area have already seen significant business gains from participating in evacuation flights in the Middle East. Charter operator Air Partner says it has moved more than 12,000 people from troubled regions since late January. As demand grows in Japan, some companies are positioning themselves and their equipment to respond and cash in on the work.

"We are dealing with over 1,000 people wanting to evacuate from Tokyo this morning," Asia Jet's Mike Walsh told Reuters, Wednesday. Walsh has arranged to have five Airbus A330s on standby to meet demand. Asia Jet's clients have so far been large corporations and non-government organizations seeking to evacuate their employees. Other operators working the area include Metrojet and Air Partner. Air Partner says jet fuel shortages and airport closures have complicated logistics. Meanwhile, inbound flights are apparently seeing extremely low demand. Passenger Andy Beese, who flew to Tokyo late Tuesday, told the Toronto Sun, "I've never been on such an empty flight." Said Beese, "It was a (300-seat Boeing) 777 with barely 20 people on board."

Cannes AirShow || 9-11 June 2011 || The Only GA Expo in 
The Only General Aviation Exhibition in France
The Cannes AirShow brings together the leading protagonists in general and business aviation to allow a demanding clientèle discovery of the latest developments and industry innovations in a geographically logical and appealing setting. This professional exhibition is designed for owners and pilots, whether passionate fans or professionals, in general and business aviation throughout Europe, Africa, and Russia — offering visitors a large and representative palette of the aeronautics industry. The Cannes AirShow is southern Europe's leading exhibition in general and business aviation. Click here for details and registration info.
Commander 114 Owners, Take Note back to top 

Commander Owners Report Cracks

The Commander Owners Group (COG) has received "several" reports from Commander 114 owners about cracks in and around the elevator hinge assemblies and spars, and is encouraging owners to check their aircraft and report their findings. COG does not know if the issue is widespread and is seeking information from the Commander community and asking that they help spread the word. The group is taking a leadership position and offering help to owners by providing a suggested inspection procedure and a survey form to track results.

Those specific resources are available online for Commander owners. COG's online survey page is now available to collect information about the breadth and nature of the problem. The group suggests that aircraft be inspected by a mechanic following the provided elevator spar inspection guide and report (PDF). After your mechanic performs the check as directed by the guide, COG asks that you have him or her fill out the post-check report (available on the Elevator Survey page, above) online. The organization intend to act as a central collection point for information and will make the findings available to its members.

WingX Pro 7 for the iPad (And Other Mobile Platforms) || Hilton Software
WingX Pro7 Version 5 for iPad — Includes In-Flight Weather
The new WingX Pro7 Version 5 Moving Map adds ADS-B In-Flight Weather, Terrain-Enhanced VFR Sectionals, IFR Low/High Enroute charts, ADS-B NEXRAD, TFRs, SUAs, and a lot more. All moving map views can be displayed fullscreen or side-by-side. Also included: Animated weather images, DUATS, A/FD, AOPA Directory with Yelp integration, Route Planning, FARs, E6B, and more. WingX is also available for Windows Mobile, Blackberry, and Android. Click here for more information.
Kyle & Amanda Franklin Update back to top 

Amanda Franklin 'Doing Well'

Air show pilot Kyle Franklin seems to be in good spirits and is upbeat about his wife Amanda's recovery from serious burns after the couple was involved in a mishap at a Texas airport March 12. In a Facebook posting , which serves as a caption for the accompanying photo, Franklin says his wife is "doing well" as she awaits more surgery. "Me working at my computer, after my auto skin graft," Franklin wrote on his wall. "Amanda's down the hall, doing well. She goes in on Monday for more surgeries." Franklin promised a full update on Amanda's progress shortly. Meanwhile, at least two funds have been established to raise money to help the Franklins recover and rebuild. Click here for the fund organized by the International Council of Air Shows and here for the fund created by the Brownsville Air Fiesta, the show during which the Franklins had their accident.

The NTSB's preliminary report of the crash doesn't add much new information, other than the fact that the almost vertical drop of the aircraft into the mesquite collapsed the landing gear and there was plenty of fuel in the wing that didn't get to burn thanks to the speedy response from the airport fire department. Franklin's friends and relatives have recovered the wreck and hauled it back to their home base in Missouri. The engine, which apparently failed during the couple's wing walking act, causing the forced landing, has been sent to Tulsa for analysis.

ICAS Foundation's Kyle & Amanda Franklin Fund

Kyle & Amanda Franklin Fund || Click to Donate via the ICAS Foundation

The aviation community is coming together to help Kyle and Amanda Franklin get back on their feet and eventually back in the air after their mishap at Air Fiesta at the Brownsville/South Padre Island Airport. If you'd like to contribute, click on the banner at right to visit the ICAS Foundation web site.

AviationExpo Europe || 27-29 May 2011 || Bitburg, Germany
AviationExpo Europe
... is the dedicated European General Aviation exhibition in 2011, showcasing everything from ultralights through to business jets. Join Europe's leading exhibitors as they showcase the latest in General Aviation at Bitburg Airport.

Click here to learn more.
Opinion & Commentary back to top 

AVweb Insider Blog: Is Potomac Airfield Our Tahrir Square?

O.K., so it's a reach. Professional nudge (and Potomac Airfield owner and operator) David Wartofksy has asked the DOT to review the onerous security procedures that burden anyone flying into the District of Columbia. In the latest installment of our AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli asks the obvious (and, to some, unthinkable) question: Isn't it time we just stop doing this stuff?

Read more and join the conversation.

AVweb Insider Blog: Fuel Survey — Give Us Real Numbers

Paul Bertorelli has finished compiling the results of our recent avgas replacement survey, and he gives you the skinny on what we've learned in his latest post to the AVweb Insider blog. Among our findings: Owners want to know what it's going to cost — whatever "it" turns out to be.

Read more and join the conversation.

AVweb Insider Blog: Fire in Flight — Give It a Thought

Fire in flight is such a universally horrible thing to think about that most of us probably just don't think about it much. But two recent accidents highlight how important it is to spend some time taking basic precautions. In the latest installment of the AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli (again) stresses why you need a Halon extinguisher and why you need to keep it close in the cockpit.

Read more and join the conversation.

AVbuys || AVweb Stories About Great Deals in Aviation
Fly More for Less
Visit the AVbuys page for discounts, rebates, incentives, bargains, special offers, bonus depreciation, or tax benefits to help stretch your budget. We're helping you to locate and view current offers instantly, with a direct link to sponsors' web sites for details.

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

Are You Flying with a Continental PowerLink System?

If so, we would like to hear your impressions of the system for a follow-up article on this product, which Continental might be about to take another run at promoting. Drop us a line at pbertorelli@avweb.com, and we'll get back to you.

Associate Editor Opening

One of our sister aviation publications is looking for an associate editor. If you are a savvy, motivated layout master and wordsmith, they would love to hear from you. (There's a link to contact them beneath the following job description.)

Job Description: Associate Editor

Associate Editor will provide primary editorial support to Editor of consumer aviation magazine, which may include rewriting press releases for publication, web postings, copy and substantive editing of articles, departments and columns, preparation of galleys for review, writing articles, sizing and color correction of photos, enterprise reporting, proofreading and packaging of layouts for offsite production staff.


  • Two years of magazine or similar experience
  • Strong copy editing/substantive editing/fact-checking skills
  • Skilled in using CS3 Suite/Mac, MS Office
  • Interest in aviation
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively from a home office
  • Intellectual curiosity and willingness to learn
  • Strong work ethic and self-motivation
  • Clear written and verbal communication skills
  • Solid organizational skills
  • Excellent attention to detail
  • Sensitivity to and ability to meet deadlines
  • Ability to internalize and adhere to publication's style guide/style sheets
  • Willingness to travel occasionally

Desirable Skills

  • Experience in building things
  • Experience leveraging social networking/web to encourage product visibility and reader interaction
  • Digital video/still photography, video editing
  • Pilot's license

This is a telecommute position. To apply, submit a cover letter, resume and three clips to BelvoirJobOpportunity@avweb.com. (Resume and cover letter should be Microsoft Word attachments; please attach clips as PDFs.)

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 255,000 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.

Light Plane Maintenance Toolbox CD
Is Your A&P Keeping Secrets?
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AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

Video: Legend Cub vs. CubCrafters LSA

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

To look at an original Piper J-3 Cub, you'd have to say, "What's the big deal?" Tube and fabric construction and a cork for a gas gauge. Yet the Cub idea endures in the form of several LSA Cub clones. In this video, AVweb's Paul Bertorelli gets a flight demo in the Legend Cub and in CubCrafters' S2.

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Picture of the Week: AVweb's Flying Photography Showcase

This week's winning photo comes from Jeffrey N. Jeffords of Lenoir City, TN. Click here for the rest of this week's submissions.
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: Leavenworth Aviation Services (KFLV, Ft. Leavenworth, KS)

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

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Leavenworth Aviation Services, LLC at Sherman Army Airfield (KFLV) in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

"This is obviously a one-man operation (plus volunteers)," writes AVweb reader Denis Walsh — but sometimes one man can do more for you than a large operation. To wit:

We were met with complete cooperation and helped to get the courtesy car running so my son could drive to the prison to visit a friend. All this despite the absence of the FBO operator. His stand-in went out of his way to accomodate our no-notice needs. The very small terminal facility was the tidiest and best maintained I have seen [and is] worthy of being compared to the fanciest FBO. They had all the latest mission-planning equipment and free refreshments. A very pleasant surprise for me.

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

While on final, RNAV 9, into Isla Grande airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico recently:

"Mooney 5 Triple 8 Quebec, be advised: Iguana crossing the runway, south to north, midfield."

Then, on short final:

"Double 8 Quebec, iguana no factor. He's crossed the white line on the north side."

I've heard a lot of funny stuff on the radio, but that was a first!

Wallace Pond
via e-mail

Heard Anything Funny on the Radio?

Heard anything funny, unusual, or downright shocking on the radio lately? If you've been flying any length of time, you're sure to have eavesdropped on a few memorable exchanges. The ones that gave you a chuckle may do the same for your fellow AVweb readers. Share your radio funny with us, and, if we use it in a future "Short Final," we'll send you a sharp-looking AVweb hat to sport around your local airport. No joke.

Click here to submit your original, true, and previously unpublished story.

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.