This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... Pilot Insurance Center (PIC)PAYING TOO MUCH FOR LIFE INSURANCE?
you are a pilot who currently has or is applying for a life insurance
policy with anyone other than the Pilot Insurance Center (PIC),
STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING! You are probably overpaying for your
insurance or awaiting a higher premium once you are approved. PIC
assures you the best policy at the best price from an agent who knows
aviation and won't send your rate into a flat spin after underwriting.
You have nothing to lose, and it might be the most profitable five
minutes of your day. Call PIC at (800) 380-8376 and get an instant
quote, or visit PIC at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/piclife/avflash.
The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded,
Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
CHECKS GROUND TANKER PILOTS...
A year ago, the U.S. Forest Service decided most of its heavy air
tankers were unfit to fly, not because they were demonstrated to be
unsafe but because there was some circumstantial evidence they might
be. Now, it seems some of the pilots who fly the big planes are
suffering the same fate. According to Wildfire News
up to eight pilots have been told they are not allowed to go near the
airplanes because of "issues" in background checks that were initiated
this year. According to the magazine, the pilots, some with military
experience, are not being told what flags were raised on their checks
and they must wait for the government to complete the reviews before
they find out. "It's pretty amazing they can pull us off the line on
an assumption," Steven Maxwell, one of the grounded pilots, told
Wildfire News. "The background check isn't even completed."
TANKER CONVERSION TESTED...
And while the government sorts out who can fly the ancient iron,
entrepreneurs continue to experiment with not-quite-so-ancient
aircraft with which to modernize the fleet and potentially open the
field to more pilots. As AVweb told you last year, Evergreen
Aviation has developed a tanker version of the Boeing 747 and now a group of
California companies is hoping converted DC-10s will soon be on
fire duty. 10 Tanker LLC, which is spearheading the project, tested
the 30-year-old trijet by dropping 10,000 gallons of water over
Southern California Logistics Airport last week. The plane is now at
Le Bourget in France where it will do four drops at the Paris Air Show
in hopes of attracting customers. More...
TECH KEEPS THE OLDER BIRDS FLYING
And as 1970s technology is applied to aerial firefighting hardware,
the Forest Service, NASA and the University of California, Davis, are
collaborating on a state-of-the-art facility to keep the well-worn
fleet of air tankers operating as safely as possible. The new Aviation
Center for Excellence includes a flight simulator specially designed
for firefighting crews and a whole-aircraft X-ray system for spotting
structural problems in aircraft. The X-ray system is a former Air
Force facility now owned by Aerobotics Inc., which has joined with
four other firms to create the Aircraft Health Management center.
GENERAL'S OFFICE CRITICAL...
As the hand-wringing (and finger-pointing) continues over future
funding (or lack thereof) for the National Airspace System, other
areas of the FAA are also feeling the pinch. Next to be red-flagged in a report by the Department of Transportation's
Inspector General's office is airline safety inspections. With budget
carriers sprouting across the country and many airlines on the
financial ropes, the FAA has decided, due to financial constraints,
not to replace about 200 inspectors who will retire or resign this
year. There are now about 3,400 inspectors. DOT's Assistant Inspector
General David Dobbs claims inspectors aren't doing the job properly at
current staffing levels. "Adequate resources need to be committed to
air carrier oversight to ensure the continuity of safe operations,"
said the report. More...
AIRLINES DEFEND RECORD
The FAA and airlines were critical of the report, noting that there
hasn't been a major airliner crash in the U.S. in more than three
years. "We changed the way we do business as the industry changed,"
FAA spokesman Greg Martin told The Associated Press. "This is the
safest period in aviation history." And even though they're losing
huge amounts of money, airlines say they will not cut corners on
safety. "We have cut nothing that would compromise safety, nor will
we," US Airways spokesman David Castelveter said. Inspector General
Ken Mead agreed there's no need to hit the panic button.
PLAN WOULD TAKE MORE THAN IT GIVES?
The city of Chicago is being accused of making its expansion plan for
O'Hare International Airport look better than it actually is so it can
qualify for FAA grants. The Campbell Hill Aviation Group has filed a
critique of Chicago's application for $300 million in FAA funds. The
consultants, who were paid to do the critique by the communities of
Bensenville and Elk Grove, both of which will be significantly
affected by the expansion, say the city failed to prove that the
massive expansion (ultimately costing about $20 billion) is worth it.
According to the consultants, Chicago, by law, had to show that the
benefits would at least equal the expense -- but it didn't, and that
means the FAA has to turn down the application. "The FAA is clearly
between a rock and a hard place," said Craig Johnson, the mayor of Elk
(ALMOST) ALL-AMERICAN LSA
A Texas company claims to be the first U.S. aircraft manufacturer to
certify an airplane under the new Special Light Sport Aircraft (S-LSA)
category. The Thorpedo, a Jabiru-powered version of the certified
Thorp T211 made by IndUS Aviation, of Dallas, received its FAA
certificate June 8. Base price is $85,000. A handful of imported
planes, mostly from Europe, have earned S-LSA status but IndUS says
its plane is the first "designed in America and manufactured in
America." The plane was designed by American Jim Thorp in the 1940s
but some might split hairs about the Thorpedo's nationality. According
to the company Web site, the aircraft's components are made in
Bangalore, India, and assembled in Dallas. More...
JA AIR CENTER, YOUR GARMIN SOURCE, IS LOOKING
PURCHASE USED GPS UNITS, AVIONICS, AND AIRCRAFT
inventory levels allow JA to offer top dollar for used GPS,
avionics, and aircraft. Call (800) 323-5966 for your current
value with no purchase required. JA Air Center,
Garmin's largest avionics dealer, stocks all the
new Garmin aviation GPS units including the GPSMap 296 (new low
price of $1,495), iQue 3600A PDA/GPS, GPSMap 196, GPSMap
96C, and GPSMap 96. We also stock Garmin accessories;
software; and outdoor, mobile, and marine GPS
units. JA Air Center [Dupage Airport (KDPA) in West
Chicago, IL] provides the
finest avionics installations, turbine/piston maintenance,
avionics/instrument service, mail order, and aircraft
sales. Also, we offer FBO services and fuel at Dekalb
Taylor Municipal Airport (KDKB) in Dekalb, IL. Please call
(800) 323-5966 and mention this AVflash, or order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ja/avflash.
AND TSA ON DCA SECURITY
TSA Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Fleming told the Senate Commerce
Committee last week that the strict security requirements that will be
imposed on the owners of private aircraft using Ronald Reagan
Washington National Airport are a "basic starting point" and could be
revised in the future. He didn't say whether that means they might get
even tougher but his comments came after several members of the
committee complained that the security lid will keep out all but a few
private operators. Anyone using DCA will have to have an armed law
enforcement officer on board and go through a TSA security screening
at a gateway airport before flying to Washington. Committee Chairman
Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) said the provisions are "just going to kill
general aviation" because of the added costs. More...
OWNERS WANT TO TAKE OVER
A group of 50 Commander owners from all over the world have bid on the
assets of the bankrupt aircraft manufacturer. They've formed a company
called Commander Premier Aircraft Corporation (CPAC) and named Joel M.
Hartstone as their president. Hartstone said the bid is to buy
"substantially all of the assets" of the company, which is based in
Bethany, Okla. A dollar figure wasn't released but Bob Tippens, a
director of CPAC, told AOPA that there are no other serious bids.
Commander slipped from Chapter 11 reorganization to Chapter 7
liquidation last January after a potential investor defaulted. The
company built about 200 of the highly-regarded, speedy and luxurious
singles between 1992 and 2002. More...
AOPA; THE REAL-TIME FLIGHT PLANNER IS WORTH THE DUES
Whether you're an experienced pilot, a student, or
simply someone interested in aviation, AOPA membership can be
an invaluable resource for you at an incredible value. You can
join AOPA for just $39 a year and take advantage of the
incredible benefits exclusive to members. These include: A full year's
no-cost subscription to AOPA Pilot magazine; 24-hour access to
the members-only section of the web site; and AOPA's Real-Time Flight
Planner, with up-to-the-minute flight restrictions, routing images,
weather info, and more! As the largest aviation organization in the
world, AOPA is a tireless advocate for over 400,000 members,
protecting their right to fly. So what are you waiting for? Become an
AOPA member today by going online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aopa/join/avflash.
YOUNG EAGLES DAY
Saturday was Young Eagles Day at airports across the country,
and EAA members, who have already taken more than 1 million youngsters
aloft for their first GA flight, went to work on the second million.
At Quonset State Airport, in North Kingstown, R.I., 90 kids and their
families got an intro to the GA world that started with a bit of
ground school -- navigation, air traffic control and instruments
briefly explained -- and a free museum tour, before heading outdoors to the 20
aircraft waiting on the flight line. First to fly, in Kim
Boekelheide's homebuilt Glastar, was 11-year-old Ben Falvey. "It was
awesome!" he said, echoing every Young Eagle's first response. "I
always like going up in the sky, I'm just amazed at what everything
looks like from up there." More...
SOLUTIONS FOR CONGESTION
For those who think airspace congestion is the evil empire, a Berkeley
professor is striking back with a mathematical force he believes will
be with aviators in the future. "The long term vision is a bit like
what you might see in Star Wars films when streams of aircraft in the
sky are crisscrossing each other beautifully," said Alexandre Bayen.
Bayen is now working on mathematical algorithms that will enable
aircraft to recognize potential conflicts and, initially at least,
warn them to take evasive action. But he said in a Berkeley press release that his ultimate plan is
for computers that will take over control from a pilot "in an
emergency situation." More...
GET READY FOR SUMMER!
DOUG RITTER'S SURVIVAL GEAR
Doug Ritter has designed a Pocket
Survival Pak and two RSK Survival Knives by Benchmade.
Aeromedix.com is the exclusive outlet for the Doug Ritter RSK
MK1 and the Mini RSK MK1 in black or yellow handles. Says
Doug, "I don't believe that you will find a better value in a folder
for everyday utility or survival." The Mini RSK M1 knife
has the same incredible CPM S30V steel and same superb Griptilian
handle as the full-size model. The Pocket Survival
Pak is waterproof, floats, and has all the essential
survival items. No other pocket survival kit compares to the overall
quality of the Pocket Survival Pak. To order, call
Aeromedix at (888) 362-7123. View Aeromedix's complete line of
safety and survival products for pilots at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/aeromedi/avflash.
PASSING OF CURTIS PITTS
The man whose nimble little biplane spawned a whole segment of
aviation design, competition and just plain fun died Friday. Curtis
Pitts, whose Pitts Special became the standard for sport
aviation for 60 years, was 89. He died in the hospital from
complications resulting from a heart valve replacement. EAA President
Tom Poberezny, who has more than 3,300 hours on Pitts Specials, said
Pitts had a tremendous influence on him personally. "More important
was his personality and willingness to share so much with those who
were in pursuit of aviation as a career, recreation, or aerobatic
performer," he said. "As we mourn, we should take this opportunity to
celebrate his life and contributions to the aviation community."
Vickers Vimy made it to St. John's...
Emergency AD issued on T-6s
Boeing took early lead in airliner
Angel Flight calling on Texans...
passé on Northwest. More...
NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
Drop us a line. Heard something that 130,000 news-savvy pilots
might want to know about? If it caught your eye, it would likely
interest someone else. Submit news tips via email to email@example.com. ... With our
REFURBISH WITH McCAULEY FOR EXCELLENT RESALE
Your airplane is an investment. Increase the
resale value with McCauley propellers. McCauley
propellers are installed on more than 250,000 aircraft
worldwide. McCauley is the only propeller and piston engine
governor manufacturer with a worldwide network of authorized service
centers. For the right propeller system investment for your
airplane (and an authorized service center near you), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/mccauley/avflash.
FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES:
Reader mail this week about the New York TRACON,
flat panel displays, photo submissions and more. More...
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
The Pilot's Lounge #88: The Air
Care Alliance -- Helping Those Who Fly to Help Others
they go on flights for documenting environmental degradation or for
transporting kids for medical treatment, hundreds of pilots in dozens
of organizations work tirelessly to provide special aviation duties.
AVweb's Rick Durden tells about the central source of information on
all public-benefit flying in this month's The Pilot's Lounge column.
Avionics and Your
Advertising in glossy airplane magazines (and, let's
be honest, sometimes here on AVweb too) exhorts you to buy the latest,
greatest, bleeding-edge avionics for your plane. Come time to sell it,
though, and you might not get back what you put into it. Brian
Jacobson discusses the value of upgrading your panel.
|BENEFIT AVIATION & YOURSELF WITH THE NAA PLATINUM
In addition to favorable rates, NAA
cardholders will receive benefits including a discounted rate for NAA
membership and aviation products. You may also qualify for no-cost
accidental death and dismemberment coverage and aircraft damage
reimbursement. NAA, the first national aviation association, receives
a contribution from BankOne with every purchase made on the NAA
Platinum Visa® Card. Those contributions help NAA preserve
the heritage of aviation by supporting the presentation of prestigious
awards and the certification of national aviation records. For more
information and for the 2004 Collier Winner go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/naa/visa/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/
ATTENTION, CESSNA OWNERS AND PILOTS
Cessna Flyer Association (CFA) provides parts locating, tech
support, a monthly member magazine, online forums, national & regional
events, an annual convention, seminars, and more. For less than
a tank of fuel ($39.00 for a one-year membership), you can access the
needed information to expand your knowledge and get more enjoyment
from owning and flying your Cessna aircraft. Join the Cessna
Flyer Association (CFA) today as they build the ultimate Cessna
association. Go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cfa/avflash.
Straight as the crow flies...
Clearance Delivery: ...then own navigation as filed.
Flight 269: Roger. 269 is cleared to Destination Indian
Springs via after take off Radar vectors to 4000, then present
position direct BOM, pass BOM at 6000 or below, after passing 15,000
turn right on heading 280 to intercept J-156 direct ZZT, thereafter
intercept J-158, climb and maintain FL 240 own navigation as filed...
...And I need another pencil. More...
|Sponsor News and
Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by
the support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your
|AVIDYNE'S CMAX APPROACH CHARTS TAKE SITUATIONAL
AWARENESS TO THE NEXT LEVEL|
Charts, which can be displayed on Avidyne's FlightMax EX500 or
Entegra/EX5000 MFDs, provide geo-referenced approach charts and
airport diagrams. CMax reduces the amount of paper in your
cockpit, and allows you to access critical chart data more quickly and
easily. CMax overlays your flight plan and aircraft position for
optimum orientation. CMax even shows runway incursion hotspots
and improves taxiway awareness, reducing the need for "progressives"
at unfamiliar airports. With CMax, youll know exactly
where you are on the approach or on the field. http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.
|SEE WHAT ATC SEES AND THEN SEE WHAT THEY DO WITH THE
The AVweb Edition of Flight Explorer is
the PC-based graphical aircraft situation display that gives you 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 want for
just $9.95 a month. Subscribe at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flightexplorer/avflash.
|PROTECT YOUR IFR TICKET WITH THE MAGAZINE DEDICATED TO
IFR Refresher is dedicated to
keeping IFR-rated pilots updated with the latest information. IFR
Refresher polishes your proficiency, challenges your knowledge,
briefs you on changing regs, and keeps your decision-making skills
sharp. Order for guaranteed savings for as long as you subscribe at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/ifrref/avflash.
|CFIs DISCOVER THE SECRETS TO SUCCESS IN GREG
BROWN'S CLASSIC BOOK|
The Savvy Flight
Instructor. You passed the challenging CFI checkride, but what
about all those "other" flight instructing questions how to
recruit flight students; how to keep them flying; how to optimize your
pass rate on checkrides; and how to get students to return for
advanced ratings? Find the answers in The Savvy Flight
Instructor by Greg Brown, AOPA Flight Training
columnist and 2000 Flight Instructor of the Year. AVweb
EXCLUSIVE: Order your personally autographed copy of the book at
|FLYING MAGAZINE'S JUNE ISSUE HIGHLIGHTS "THE NEW
Still a Glamorous Shape." New Piper's model
PA-46 turns 21 this year and is as good a pressurized piston
single-engine concept as ever. This issue's articles also include:
"The IFR Safety Conundrum" why isn't the record as good as
expected?"; "Boeing vs. Airbus" they fight it out with business
jets, too; "Cockpit Entertainment Has Arrived"; and much more. Order
your Flying subscription online for exceptional savings
|AIRSPORT AVIONICS OFFERS A $100 DISCOUNT & COMPLIMENTARY
AirSport Avionics is the only manufacturer
of Altitude Alerters that work by listening to everything your
transponder and encoder are reporting to ATC, both Mode A (squawk
code) and Mode C (altitude). A double benefit! AirSport Alerters are
completely portable and don't require permanent installation.
SPECIAL: $100 discount on all models, with complimentary ground
shipping. Order online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/airsport/avflash.
|THOUGHT THAT USING GPS WOULD BE FUN, DIDN'T
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.
|PUT AVWEB'S HALF-MILLION DAILY HITS TO WORK FOR
AVweb users can offer their aircraft, parts, and
accessories for sale on General Aviation's most popular web site with
AVweb's improved Classified Ads section. To better
qualify sellers and limit the number of non-aviation products, a
nominal fee for listings has been initiated. Discover AVweb's
marketplace for classifieds at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/classifieds/avflash.
We Welcome Your
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.
Letters to the editor intended for publication in AVmail should be
sent to mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a comment or question? Send
it to mailto:email@example.com.
Today's issue written by News Writer Russ Niles:
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:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Greasy side down for landing.
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
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