The Internet's Aviation Magazine & News Service

Now Over 130,000 Subscribers
Volume 11, Number 17b April 28, 2005

Email this AVflash to a friend

This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ...
Piedmont Hawthorne Aircraft Sales

LOOK TO THE PIEDMONT HAWTHORNE AIRCRAFT SALES TEAM WHEN YOU'RE BUYING or SELLING YOUR NEXT AIRCRAFT

Whether you're looking for that "envy of many pilots" single (such as a Bonanza) or a workhorse turboprop or multi-mission jet, Piedmont Hawthorne Aircraft Sales does it all — and has done so for over 65 years — boasting a professional sales/marketing team engaged in new and pre-owned aircraft with more than 100 years of sales, support, and consulting expertise — Turnkey assistance from acquisition, financing, or sales consulting to award-winning service and avionics centers, and a VIP program for every customer at their extensive network of 36 FBOs — Always looking to purchase quality turboprop, mid-size, and large turbine aircraft. One call to (800) 259-1940, or one click to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/phas/avflash.h.

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

BUREAUCRACY BOGS DOWN SPACE BUSINESS...
Burt Rutan may have conquered space but he's not so sure he can crack space bureaucracy. The iconic aviation innovator gave legislators an earful last week when he testified before the House Science Committee's space subcommittee. If the government lets him, Rutan envisions a franchise-like system for operators who want to get into the "personal spaceflight" business, with strict controls over equipment, operations and standards emanating from a head office. Such a system could fill a surprisingly large "need" and put up to 100,000 people into suborbital weightlessness within 12 years. Virgin Galactic, which is getting Rutan's Scaled Composites to build spacecraft for its commercial operation, claims 29,000 people have already offered to put up $20,000 deposits on $200,000 flights. More...

...RULES ANTIQUATED, INEFFECTIVE...
Rutan told the hearing that the regulatory process almost scuttled his Paul Allen-financed bid to win the Ansari X Prize, which his team accomplished last October. Although SpaceShipOne and White Knight bear little resemblance to the classic booster/payload arrangement that has typified space flight to date, under the FAA's new Office of Commercial Space Transportation, according to Rutan, they get the same treatment. Under those regs, the protection of the "non-involved public" in the event of disaster is paramount. "It resulted in cost overruns, increased risk for my test pilots, [and] did not reduce risk to the non-involved public," he said. Rutan offered a solution. More...

...LINING UP FOR A PIECE OF THE ACTION
Of course, the spinoff from such an industry could be huge and the maneuvering to capitalize on it has begun. According to the South Florida Business Journal, at least 10 states, including Florida, are trying to convince the new space tourism companies to choose them as bases for their operations. The paper says the research firm of Futron/Zogby surveyed 450 millionaires in 2003 and projected that private space flight would become a $1 billion annual business, with 15,000 people seeing the black sky in 2021. But it's not just launch sites and other infrastructure that will create wealth. After all, what's the point of taking the most high-tech adventure available without bringing home the most high-tech souvenir? More...

IN PRINT AND ONLINE, TRADE-A-PLANE GIVES YOU THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
Get 24 issues (two years) of Trade-A-Plane for just $24.95 (U.S., standard mail) INCLUDING the web edition. Subscribe by calling (800) 337-5263 and mentioning this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/tap/avflash.

VLJ SHOWDOWN AT OSHKOSH?
Visitors to EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh (July 25-31) may be able to compare firsthand the frontrunners in the very light jet (VLJ) competition. Eclipse plans to make a big entrance with a fully finished type-conforming version of its long-awaited 500 and Cessna is considering flying the prototype of its Mustang to the big show. Adam Aircraft will also undoubtedly have its A700 proof-of-concept plane there. The AdamJet made a big splash two years ago when it became the first of any version of a VLJ to fly to Oshkosh, but the A700 program has not yet produced a conforming airframe. More...

...ECLIPSE CONFIRMS BIG ORDER...
The Oshkosh announcement comes a couple of days after Eclipse released details of an order for up to 300 VLJs to DayJet, a company that hopes to start an on-demand charter service on the eastern seaboard. Eclipse says it has more than 2,000 orders for the 500, which was originally slated to begin delivery this year but was delayed due to a change in engine supplier. Eclipse CEO Vern Raburn told reporters on Wednesday the Pratt & Whitney Canada 610F-equipped 500 is a pleasure to fly, although there are still a few developmental bugs to work out, including improved longitudinal stability and better brakes. More...

...WHILE MUSTANG FLIES
Although it started three years after Eclipse went public with its VLJ program, long-established Cessna appears to be catching up to start-up Eclipse with the development of the Mustang. The prototype flew for the first time on April 23 and by Wednesday it had flown at least twice more, said Cessna spokeswoman Jessica Myers. Myers said the company hasn't decided to fly the prototype to Oshkosh but it hasn't ruled it out, either. "It will depend on where we are with the flight test program," she said. The prototype will be used for aerodynamic and systems tests. More...

RECONDITIONED 25XLs AVAILABLE FROM LIGHTSPEED AVIATION
When new, these headsets had a list price of $599. Now, for a limited time, you can buy reconditioned 25XLs for $350. Most of these headsets come to us from pilots who have upgraded to LightSPEED Thirty 3G headsets. All have new ear seals and head pads and are upgraded and tested to current factory specifications. In addition, they are backed by LightSPEED's 30-day money-back guarantee, one-year warranty, and the LightSPEED emphasis on customer service and satisfaction. Go online for more information and to purchase an R25XL at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed/r25xls/avflash.

T-34 UPDATE
After nearly five months on the ground, the T-34 Mentor fleet is slowly finding its way back into the air. Thanks to a Herculean effort by the T-34 Association Inc., the FAA last week quietly granted owners a one-time 60-hour period to fly their Mentors, pending a permanent fix for the latest bout of spar cracking. Recall that a T-34 crashed in Texas on Dec. 7 after a center section spar gave way. Both occupants were killed. The FAA immediately grounded the fleet and the T-34 group went to work on a fix. To qualify for flight, each owner was required to compile a detailed history of the airplane and to inspect the center spar section for cracks around certain fasteners. Once approved, the flight envelope will be restricted to zero through 2.5 Gs and 152 knots. More...

A380 TAKES OFF AS DREAMLINER SALES SKYROCKET
The world's largest passenger plane lifted smoothly from Toulouse Airport in France Wednesday, officially launching the highly polarized battle between Airbus and Boeing over the future of air travel. Airbus is gambling its massive A380, which flew for four hours on its maiden flight, is the shape of things to come, promising greater comfort, efficiency and lower fares. However, company officials weren't taking any chances with safety on the first flight. Crew members all wore parachutes and fire trucks lined the runway for the event, which drew 30,000 spectators. But while Airbus is claiming the PR high ground for now, Boeing's vision of future flight, the 787 Dreamliner, earned some pretty substantial votes of confidence on the order book earlier this week. More...

PILOT GETAWAYS MAGAZINE — YOUR FLIGHT PLAN FOR ADVENTURE
Pilot Getaways magazine's March/April issue lives up to it's "getaways" name with a romantic retreat to Madden's Resort in Minnesota; outdoor delights in Colorado's Majestic Mountains; a weekend getaway to Petit Jean, Arkansas; back-country flying in the Garden State; fly-in dining in Hampton, New Hampshire; and bush flying into the Flying M Ranch, Oregon. A subscription to Pilot Getaways gives pilots just want they want and need — more places to fly and more things to do! Order your subscription today at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/getaways/avflash.

NON-CERTIFICATED MAINTENANCE?
A North Dakota aircraft maintenance company is reportedly still in business even though it lost its FAA certification in 2004 and its senior mechanic lost his A&P certificate earlier this year. In both cases, according to multiple Associated Press stories published in the Fargo Forum newspaper, the FAA determined that faulty maintenance, compounded by falsified maintenance records on the part of Fargo Aero Tech, led to potentially disastrous failures on two aircraft. In the May 2004 incident, the tail rotor cable on a private helicopter failed just after the pilot had landed. Inspection of the cable was to have been part of the 100-hour inspection, which had been performed by the company four hours previously. There's More...

JET FUEL TAX SUNSET REINSTATED
The Senate Finance Committee has fixed a legislative error and a sunset clause on the tax on jet fuel has been reinstated. According to the National Business Aviation Association, the taxation of jet fuel was moved from one legislative section to another. During the move, the clause ending the 21.8 cent-per-gallon tax on Sept. 30, 2007, was inadvertently omitted. The sunset clause is now back on the books, leaving only a 4.3 cent-per-gallon tax as permanent. Some operators can also expect some small tax breaks thanks to amendments approved by the committee. More...

IF YOUR CELL PHONE CAN SURF THE NET, IT CAN RECEIVE AVIATION WEATHER
— and more! WxServer works with virtually any internet-enabled phone and any nationwide wireless carrier to give you up-to-the-minute aviation weather information and satellite images. WxServer includes airport frequency listings and fuel availability, as well as quick-dial FBO links, rental cars, and taxis. SPECIAL OFFER: AVweb readers receive $10 off the regular annual subscription rates! Order for yourself or as a gift at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/wxserver/avflash.

KIT JET READIES FOR FIRST FLIGHT
While the certification race for the very light jet market heats up, there continues to be interest in homebuilt jets. Aerocomp showed off its (six-foot-tall cabin) kit jet at Sun 'n Fun recently and now the people behind ViperJet claim to be within days of the first flight of their new offering. The ViperJet Mark II has four times the power of the original ViperJet and Viper Aircraft spokesman Dan Hanchette says the 3,000 pounds of thrust now available (from GE J-85/CJ610 engines) should push the two-place plane to 500 mph with a climb rate of 10,000 feet per minute. Test pilot Len Fox will apparently find out for sure in the next week or so. More...

FROM STUDENT PILOT TO TERRORIST SUSPECT TO FUGITIVE
We may never know exactly how commercial student Zayad Hajaig became a fugitive terrorist suspect but the British national, with the help of friends in the U.S., is now trying to assure American authorities that he has no links to terrorist groups. "I am not a bloody terrorist," Hajaig is quoted in The Atlanta Constitution Journal as writing in an e-mail to his friend Leonard Harris, who owns an Atlanta pilot shop. Hajaig fled to London after federal authorities sought to question him over allegations that he "became aggressive" with a flight instructor in a bid to gain a commercial certificate. Authorities later found a handgun and two rifles that he allegedly possessed illegally. Hajaig and his U.S. friends claim it's a misunderstanding that went wildly out of control. More...

AIRCRAFT PARTNERSHIPS NOW ON ASO!
Have an aircraft share you need to sell? Advertise it on ASO! For a limited time, Brief Ads (text only) are complimentary, and Comprehensive Ads (photos & specs) are subject only to a one-time $40 set-up charge. Take advantage of this special offer today! For more information, please call (888) 992-9276 and tell them you saw this AVflash mention, or visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aso/partner/avflash.

GREEK FLIGHT SAFETY INSPECTORS "UNQUALIFIED"
Some Greek flight safety inspectors are being asked to return about $500,000 in salaries because they were not qualified for the job and they already had full-time work in other areas of Greece's Civil Aviation Authority. In fact, a study by the State Audit Council found that the majority of flight safety inspectors were unqualified for the job, which included random safety inspections of aircraft. Not surprisingly, the report raised doubts about the safety of Greek-based aircraft. More...

ON THE FLY...
A Fort Wayne, Ind., airport granted unlimited life...
A top hang gliding competitor died in competition last week...
AirVenture will host a French invasion (relatively speaking). More...

AVWEB'S NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
Drop us a line. Heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about? If it caught your eye, it will probably interest someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. More...

DA40 DIAMOND STAR A FLEET FAVORITE
Airline Transport Professionals, Beijing PanAm, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University CAPT, Empire Aviation, Middle Tennessee State University, and Utah Valley State College — all have selected the G1000-equipped DA40 Diamond Star. For value, efficiency, and safety, the DA40 is the fleet favorite. For more information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/diamond/avflash.

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
COLUMNS
Say Again? #49: Come Up a Bad Cloud
A storm is brewing: Warm, wet air (increasing airline traffic) is about to collide with cold, dry air (decreasing air traffic controllers and FAA budget cutting) ... and the lightning spark will be all the new GPS approaches. "Storm-Tracker" (and AVweb columnist) Don Brown gives the forecast in this month's Say Again column. More...

AVWEB'S BUSINESS AVFLASH
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST twice monthly Business AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the Business of Aviation. Business AVflash is a must read. Watch for a Business AVflash regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA IN THE "SPOTLIGHT". Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/ More...

SEE CLEARLY METHOD IMPROVES & STRENGTHENS VISION NATURALLY
The See Clearly Method does this without the risk or expense of laser surgery.  Developed by award-winning optometrists and research scientists, the See Clearly Method is based on the same principles and techniques used by thousands of pilots in WWII.  As one pilot states, "I never thought it was possible to actually improve your vision, but it worked. I tell other pilots that this is an effective way to improve your vision, naturally."  Call (800) 881-7934 for a no-cost informational video, or visit http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/seeclear/avflash.

AVWEB'S QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
This week, AVweb wants to know if you're current in a taildragger. PLUS: Results of last week's question on the continuing (?) boycott of Chicago over the fate of Meigs Field. More...

SEE WHAT ATC SEES — AND THEN SEE WHAT THEY DO WITH IT
The AVweb Edition of Flight Explorer is the PC-based graphical aircraft situation display that gives a real-time picture of all IFR aircraft in-flight over the U.S. and Canada. Whether you're tracking a friend or want to learn more about the system in action, Flight Explorer has the information you need for just $9.95 a month. Go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flightexplorer/avflash.

AVWEB'S PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
It's been a couple of weeks since Sun 'n Fun — just enough time for reader photos to start trickling in. You've seen our galleries; now let's see what AVweb readers who were lucky enough to attend the show sent us! More...

Sponsor News and Special Offers

Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by the support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your patronage.

SHOPPING DEALS  
AVEMCO TEAMS WITH PILOT INSURANCE CENTER (PIC) TO OFFER LIFE INSURANCE
Avemco, the only direct writer of property and casualty insurance for general aviation in the U.S., is sponsoring a Term Life Insurance Program underwritten by well-respected insurance companies that have products tailored to general aviation pilots. The Avemco Program will be administered by the Pilot Insurance Center, using PIC's unique criteria. This collaborative effort will make life insurance more widely available to pilots at the best possible rates. For more information, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avemco/avflash.
SUBSCRIBE TO AVIATION SAFETY AND SAVE BIG!
You spent thousands to earn your license. Safeguard it for just pennies a day. Aviation Safety helps pilots stay ready for the realities of today's demanding flight environment with instructive articles to keep decision-making skills sharp. Subscribe now and save at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avsafe/avflash.
PRO PILOTS — INCREASE YOUR CAREER RATE-OF-CLIMB WITH GREG BROWN'S
classic book Job Hunting for Pilots. This book puts you on the inside track by addressing all aspects of advancing your career, specifically focusing on how to get your resume hand-carried into the flight departments. Not another airline interview book, Job Hunting for Pilots offers tips and techniques for job-seeking pilots at all levels — from regional, corporate, and airline to new CFIs and helicopter pilots. Take command of your career, and network your way to a new flying job. Order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/paperjet/avflash.
HASSLE-FREE AUTO BUYING FROM CREWCAR & CONSUMER GUIDES
Don't go blindly into a dealership when purchasing a vehicle; look to CrewCar. CrewCar is a car-buying service providing shoppers with a complimentary integrated phone and electronic concierge-level buying service offering value nationwide. The service is provided gratis and meets the Consumer Guide dealership network standards. For more information, visit CrewCar at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/crewcar/avflash.
SPONSOR NEWS
KITPLANES MAGAZINE TAKES THE SILENCE TWISTER OUT TO PLAY
Can we just come out and admit something? Flying is — should be, must be, just has to be — about having fun. Well, the Silence Twister — a single-seat, all-about-the-fun-and-making-no-excuses-about-it airplane — has arrived. Kitplanes takes it out to play in the June issue. Also in the June Kitplanes: "The Elite 582"; "The Perfect Paint Job, Part 2"; "Budget Builds" proves you can build and fly a "real" airplane for the cost of a new SUV; "The True Cost of Building"; "Feeling Used" — used homebuilts are out there; "Fancy Paneling, Part 1"; "Lancair U" — training from Lancair specialists; and more. Order your subscription today at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/kitplanes/avflash.
"I HAD NO IDEA THERE WAS THAT MUCH INFORMATION THAT I NEVER THOUGHT OR
heard of about flying. Not only does your book help instructors be more effective, but [it] also helps seasoned pilots improve their techniques and performance. It is exceptionally good for multi-engine students and pilots" — a comment heard from a well-experienced senior instructor after an IMFI seminar. Gordon Henrie's Instructional Methods for Flight Instructors, and Ways to Improve the Precision, Safety and Confidence of Rated Pilots is not a question-and-answer book, but a guide to what you actually think and do when you are in the cockpit. Order today at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/mountain/avflash.
THOUGHT THAT USING GPS WOULD BE FUN, DIDN'T YOU?
Then you went through the manual and came away frustrated and confused. Stop laboring to understand those manufacturers' manuals! For less than $40 (plus shipping and handling) you can better understand and operate most of the modern GPS units on the market with ZD Publishing's Pilot Friendly GPS Manuals. GPS operation is fun and rewarding when you understand how to get the desired results. These manuals will help you through all operations. Order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/zdpub/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 Russ Niles:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#rniles
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.

Fly it till every part stops.

AVflash is now available in optional easier-to-read graphic format, which includes some photos and illustrations. If you prefer, you can continue to receive AVflash in text-only format. Simply follow these instructions and AVflash will continue to arrive as it always has, in text format.


Want to subscribe or unsubscribe? Review/update your AVweb Account? Forgot your password? No problem! Simply go to our friendly Member Services menu.


AVweb | Free Sign Up | Advertise | Help | Contact Us | Privacy Policy
Aviation Consumer | IFR Magazine | Aviation Safety
Light Plane Maintenance | IFR Refresher | KITPLANES


Copyright 2005, Aviation Publishing Group. All rights reserved.
--BoUnDaRyCavflashM393D042805T36--