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Volume 10, Number 20a -- May 10, 2004

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This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... Pilot Insurance Center (PIC)

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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's NewsWire.

PILOTS SECURE, BUT ONLY TEMPORARILY...
In January 2004, the FAA told AVweb a third-party appeal process (to an Administrative Law Judge) had been implemented, but now the entire rule that granted the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) the right to pull your certificate has been suspended, AOPA says. ... Suspended until the TSA develops procedures to allow pilots due process. The rule, implemented in January 2003, granted the TSA the authority to direct the FAA to revoke a pilot's certificate based on the TSA's belief that the pilot posed a vaguely defined national security threat. The targeted pilot might not see the evidence gathered to make that determination, and was (until January 2004) able to appeal only to the TSA, the same organization that determined in the first place that they should not be allowed to fly. The forthcoming changes won't save you from wandering into a moving TFR (beware: if it's Monday or Tuesday, it must be Maine and Arkansas) or what happens to you once you have strayed, but we doubt anyone's complaining. More...

...AS PILOTS (AND NBAA) PONDER THE COST OF TFRS
While the TSA haggles with that pesky due process, pilots are still trying to keep their noses clean and their tickets clear by staying away from the Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) warning areas. Those moving plots of no-pilot's-airspace seem to be popping up all too frequently (and even more often as the presidential campaign wears on). According to the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), more than 3,000 TFRs have been issued in the period from September 11, 2001, through March 2004. The NBAA puts the price tag of the TFRs and closure of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Washington to general aviation at $43 million per month in productivity, jobs and revenue. More...

GENERAL AVIATION WELCOMES ZULUWORKS
Q: What happens when a 15-year product designer from the bicycle and outdoor products industries starts taking flying lessons? A: GA pilots get a better kneeboard, the Zuluboard! The Zuluboard comes in two models. They're stylish and far more functional than other boards. Each one is individually handcrafted by the designer himself. Check 'em out at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/zulu/avflash.

VACUUM PUMP MANUFACTURER CLOSES DOORS, REFUSES NEW ORDERS...
Aero Advantage of Granbury, Texas, has stopped production and closed its doors after the discovery that both pumps in its Dual Rotor Vacuum Pump can -- and have -- failed simultaneously. According to a notice posted on the Aero Advantage Web site, company President David Boldenow says the failures are concentrated among 300-hp Lycoming IO-540 engines, which the company believes generate a "resonant frequency resulting in the breakage of both graphite rods." Though the failure rate as tracked by Aero Advantage is just 3%, Boldenow says the number is unacceptably high. Vacuum pump shipments have been halted and orders on hand will not be filled. More...

...AS FAA CONTINUES TO WARN OF UNAPPROVED PARTS
Aero Advantage is NOT included in this warning, but our friendly feds continue to caution that there are a whole lot of unapproved parts floating around in the airplane universe. They range from engines to altimeters to just improper maintenance. If you suspect you might have gotten hold of a part that is not all it was claimed to be, the FAA asks that you let them know so that they can check it out and warn others. To find out which companies hold the Parts Manufacturer Approvals (PMAs) on different parts, the FAA has put together a handy listing that breaks them down by type. More...

ADAM, CIRRUS, LANCAIR, LIBERTY ...
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747 TO MAKE JUMBO WATER BOMBER...
By July 4 of this year, Evergreen International Aviation hopes to gain independence from firefighting the old-fashioned way. The McMinnville, Oregon-based company is working with the FAA to obtain certification for Evergreen "Supertankers") -- retrofit Boeing 747s capable of carrying 24,000 gallons of fire retardant each. Supertanker spokesman Justin Marchand tells AVweb the flight-test aircraft has made more than 50 flights and 82 drops and carried 536,000 gallons -- 1.5 million pounds -- of retardant. Why a 747? "I like the analogy 'why send in a single soldier when you can send in the army,'" says Marchand. More...

...YOU CALL, WE HAUL
Consider that an Evergreen Supertanker will carry in one load what it would take seven other firefighting planes to haul, and it will be able to get to the fire clipping along at Mach .86 (near 600 mph). Each Supertanker will carry 24,000 gallons of flame retardant, which weighs 9 pounds per gallon. That's 216,000 pounds of material that will be leaving the plane in eight seconds. That would be an interesting ride. Or maybe not. According to Marchand, data collected so far and borne out by the flight tests shows only a "negligible" g-loading (or un-loading?) when a drop is made. "Since it is a fully pressurized system, you can't even tell [when a drop is made] from a cockpit aspect," says Marchand. Neither does hauling such a big load put the jumbo on the cusp of weight problems. More...

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FAA MANAGER MANGLED, CUT, DESTROYED 9/11 TAPES
Information provided to the commission investigating the U.S. government's response to terrorist threats prior to September 11, 2001, names an FAA quality manager in the destruction of an audiotape made in the aftermath of the 9/11 hijackings. Each of at least six air traffic controllers and some ten other employees who were on the job at the New York Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC) in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., during the World Trade Center attacks gathered several hours after to recall their version of events. But that tape, which could have helped determine how the agency responded to clues that four planes had been hijacked, was destroyed before it was ever heard. In fact, officials at the ARTCC were never even told of the tape's existence. More...

FALSE REPORT REVS UP MEIGS FAITHFUL
An apparent false report of a swimmer in distress proves once again that closing Chicago's beloved lakefront airport was a singularly boneheaded move, according to the group Friends of Meigs. On April 25, Chicago 911 received a call of a person in trouble on a north-side beach. Emergency crews were dispatched, including a helicopter with diver. Prior to the closure of Meigs Field, emergency crews were stationed at the Meigs Fire Station, but that station closed when the field did. Though city officials promised that the closure would increase response time by only one to two minutes, Friends say the false alarm showed it would be much more. More...

DON'T BUY A NEW AIRCRAFT WITHOUT CHECKING WITH CS&A'S INSURANCE PROS!
Check with CS&A Aviation Insurance professionals online now for complete insurance packages with the best coverage and prices in the industry. Get a no-cost, no-obligation quote online from one of CS&A's top aviation specialists. Check with the pros before you go — at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/csa/avflash.

U.S. WATCHES AS AIRBUS "CREAMS" BOEING
Citizens of Toulouse, France, and European aircraft maker Airbus celebrated as a "gigantic" new assembly line for the new super-jumbo A380 was unveiled to acclaim and many other fine adjectives last week. Airbus, the consortium of European companies, has (according to the numbers) displaced Boeing as the world's leading producer of commercial aircraft. That sits very poorly with Washington Sen. Patty Murray, who railed against U.S. inaction during comments Thursday on the Senate floor. Murray, who is up for re-election this year, says Europe is engaging in unfair trade practices that are resulting in the "subsidized slaughter" of American companies. More...

ALUMINUM OVERCAST'S BOUNCE ... BACK?
We told you last week about damage suffered when the EAA's B-17 "Aluminum Overcast" belly-flopped after folding its mains on a landing May 5 at the Van Nuys, Calif., airport. Now you can see what happened. Video obtained by KCBS-TV in Los Angeles shows that the B-17 went down hard when both of its mains gave way after what seemed to be an uneventful landing roll. The EAA's Dick Knapinski tells AVweb the plane's 2004 plans, including the "Salute to Veterans" tour, have been put on indefinite hold. Knapinski says the extent of damage still isn't known, but the goal is to get the WWII-era plane in such shape that it can be ferried back to Oshkosh for repairs. More...

DOC BLUE'S EMERGENCY MEDICAL KIT — DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT!
Do you carry a first-aid kit in your airplane or car? AVweb's Dr. Brent Blue says drugstore first-aid kits are packed with mostly useless stuff. Dr. Blue has assembled his own traveling medical kit for dealing with all sorts of medical problems, based on his long experience as an emergency room doctor, frequent traveler, pilot, outdoorsman, and dad. It would cost more than $500 to duplicate this kit, but it's available on sale from Aeromedix for $333. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aeromedi/avflash.

US AIRWAYS RECONSIDERS BANKRUPTCY
Just how many times can one company file for bankruptcy? We may find out with US Airways. US Airways Group Inc. says it is considering yet another filing to reduce costs by at least 25%, to better position itself to compete with the low-cost carriers. US Airways emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March of 2003, and has not made a profit since. First-quarter losses were $177 million. During the initial bankruptcy, the airline cut about $1.9 billion in costs, the bulk of which came from employee pay and benefits. More...

NTSB REVEALS ERROR CHAIN IN HAWKER HUNTER FATALITY
The National Transportation Safety Board has released information that provides disturbing details of the fatal crash of a Hawker Hunter T MK 7 being ferried last July 22 for the Northern Lights Aerobatic team. Pilot Thomas Benton Delashaw of Conroe, Texas, was killed less than a mile from the runway after taking off from the Wilkes Barre/Scranton (Penn.) International Airport in VFR conditions. The NTSB report includes facts about an engine swap-out the week before the fatal accident, and the mechanic's warnings that the newly installed engine wasn't running correctly. "According to the A&P mechanic who oversaw and supervised the engine change," reads the NTSB report, "he did not sign off any maintenance records to return the airplane to an airworthy status." More...

JOIN PLANE & PILOT MAGAZINE FOR A WEEKEND OF FLYING FUN & EDUCATION!
Come to the Technology for Pilots Seminar Series. What better way to spend a day or weekend than talking about flying and learning more about how to be a better, safer pilot — and how to use the new aviation technologies? The first regional seminar will be at the Hilton Burbank Airport Hotel September 25-26, 2004. The program will include more than 25 seminars over the weekend and a social event on Saturday evening at the Million Air FBO, with many new aircraft on display. For more information and to register, call (310) 820-1500 ext. 118 and mention this AVflash, or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ppm/seminar/avflash.

ITALIAN GOVERNMENT FIRES ENTIRE ALITALIA BOARD
Talk about a break with the past. The Italian government last week fired the entire board of Alitalia in order to find private investors to pump up the languishing airline. The government, which owns 62% of the company, also fired CEO Marco Zanichelli, who had been in the job for less than three months. Talk of bankruptcy caused stock prices to drop more than 12 percent, but on news of the changes, prices jumped 20 percent. Just how bad are things? Even before a series of strikes last week that grounded 1,500 flights, the airline was losing 50,000 Euros ($59,000 USD) an hour. Alitalia hasn't made an operating profit since 1998. More...

BENDIX OR SLICK?
Magnetos, that is. Our sister publication Aviation Consumer is seeking owner feedback on these two magneto types for an upcoming article. Contact the editor directly to comment. More...

ON THE FLY...
Mooney to fight $23 million arbitration decision...
Crew error blamed in crash that killed Macedonian President...
Singapore Airlines preparing to offer longest nonstop commercial flight ever...
X PRIZE renamed ANSARI X PRIZE after family gave multimillion-dollar donation...
Actor/pilot Dennis Quaid to emcee National Aviation Hall of Fame enshrinement event....
British bookies offer odds on future of Ryanair CEO. More...

LONGER DAYS AND WARMER WEATHER MEAN IT'S TIME TO GO FLYING!
If you do the bulk of your flying in the summer months, this is an excellent time to upgrade your aircraft's panel. Take advantage of Bennett Avionics' quality used avionics and professional service. You can have the equipment you need in time for all your summer trips, with Bennett Avionics. See for yourself at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/bennett/avflash.

READER FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES:
http://www.avweb.com/avmail/

Reader mail this week about Northwest Airlines vs. GA, FSS privatization, autogas vs. avgas and much more. More...

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
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COLUMNS
CEO of the Cockpit #32: Great Expectations
We all assumed technology would make life easier and safer; and save time and paper. Nice try. Welcome to the hurry-up-and-wait world with bugs in the software, reams of computer printouts, and people who couldn't calculate a weight-and-balance to save their life (and wouldn't have pencil and paper to do it anyway). AVweb's CEO of the Cockpit wants his slide rule back.

More...

RAVE REVIEWS FOR MIKE BUSCH'S SAVVY OWNER SEMINAR
Here's what attendees had to say after Mike's Memphis seminar: "I've been to a lot of classes, and this was one of the BEST ... simply OUTSTANDING!!!" — Chip Allen (BE55); "Wonderful and informative. Will save me tons of $$$$$." — Jamie McGehee (TR182); "Seminar notebook was outstanding ... best I've seen." — Bob Gillmann (C182 + C172RG); "Great seminar, enlightening and fun." — John Mooney (C182); "It will make you the 'owner-in-command' you should be." — Milt Concannon (C414); "Mike is passionate about making airplanes safe, but doing so as inexpensively as possible. ... I sure learned a lot, and you will too." — Thomas P. Turner (American Bonanza Society). For seminar schedule and details (and Mike's no-cost monthly e-newsletter!), visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/savvy/avflash.

SHORT FINAL...
Posted to our "Finer Points of Maintenance" file...

"Remember, you really only need two tools: WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and it should, use the WD-40. If it moves and it shouldn't, use the duct tape." More...

Sponsor News and Special Offers

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SHOPPING DEALS

Terrific Ideas for Father's Day at
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A pair of Scheydens will be given away every other week to a lucky AVweb winner — a retail value up to $395! The unique flip-up design has become the choice of pilots who demand quality and function. Handmade titanium frames, quality lenses, a Rosewood case, plush micro-fiber bag and cloth are standard on all styles. For information, and to register to win, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/scheyden/avflash.

BUYING OR SELLING AN AIRCRAFT?
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AVIATION CONSUMER HAS BEEN HELPING PILOTS BUY SMART FOR 30+ YEARS
Aviation Consumer is the magazine for independent evaluations of products and services and in-depth reviews of new and used aircraft. For over 30 years, Aviation Consumer has been helping pilots buy smart. Don't wait any longer to start your subscription. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/belvoir/avcons/avflash.

FIRST WORLD FLIGHT: THE ODYSSEY OF BILLY MITCHELL IS A MUST-READ!
Three years before Lindbergh's flight to Paris, the U.S. Army joined the race to be the first to fly around the world. Countries that tried had failed, and pilots had died. Could the United States capture aviation's greatest prize? This award-winning hardcover book by Spencer Lane tells it all in great detail. Special autographed copies are available for AVweb subscribers only at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/firstworldflight/avflash.

SKYGUY OFFERS HEADSETS AND FLIGHT BAGS THAT WON'T BREAK YOUR PIGGY BANK!
Feather Lite stereo headsets for $89, and a genuine leather flight bag for $29. With these prices, you can order as gifts AND for yourself! Go online now and order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/skyguy/avflash.

CARBON MONOXIDE KILLS! GIVE THE GIFT OF SAFETY FROM CO GUARDIAN
CO Guardian has carbon monoxide detector models from portable units to panel-mount units. Each unit's solid-state sensors and temperature sensors (EMI-shielded to prevent radio interference) are built in the USA and FAA-certified. Go online to find the CO Guardian model right for your aircraft — and order in time for Father's Day (June 20) — at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cog/avflash.

GIVE DAD FUNCTION & BEAUTY IN A CHASE-DURER TIMEPIECE + A SPECIAL OFFER
Chase-Durer, makers of world-renowned watches, are offering their perfectly balanced, platinum-toned pen with gold accents for only $30 (regularly $90) with any watch purchase. Beautiful and functional timpieces for both men and women, with Chase-Durer workmanship and quality. Order today in time for Father's Day (June 20) at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/chasedur/avflash.

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SPONSOR NEWS

PEARLS OF NIGHT IFR; VECTORS ARE NOT ENOUGH; FILING TIPS = GOOD FLIGHT
... are just some of the topics scheduled for the June issue of IFR Refresher magazine. If you fly IFR, IFR Refresher should be a part of your required reading. Order your personal subscription at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/belvoir/ifrref/avflash.

PILOTS COMMENT AFTER READING IFR: A STRUCTURED APPROACH:
"The GPS chapter alone is worth getting the book. ... It's the best instrument flying book I have ever read," states Fred Scott; "If one book could help you make the leap from a bit player to a skilled conductor of instrument flight, this is probably it," reads a November 2003 AOPA Pilot review. With the help of this book, you will establish your own personal standard operating practices for IFR, including incorporation of checklists, flows, callouts, briefings, and the "fly by the numbers" method of aircraft control. For more information and to order, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/skyroad/avflash.

_____________________________________
We Welcome Your Feedback!

AVflash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest aviation news, articles, products, features and events featured on AVweb, the Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

Letters to the editor intended for publication in AVmail should be sent to mailto:editor@avweb.com.com. Have a comment or question? Send it to mailto:newsteam@avweb.com.

Today's issue written by News Writer Liz Swaine:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#lswaine
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team: mailto:sales@avweb.com.

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