NewsWire Complete Issue
By The AVweb Editorial Staff
This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ...THEY SHOOT AIRPLANES, DON'T THEY? YOU BET!
Wings to Adventure on The Outdoor Channel
They shoot them in stunning
high-definition video, and you can see the results this Sunday at 2:30pm (Eastern) on Wings to Adventure television, the hottest television show ever created about general aviation. Just
tune to the Outdoor Channel this Sunday, when series host Tom Gresham profiles the Cirrus SR-22 the plane against which others are now measured and a de Havilland Chipmunk, an
affordable warbird with style. You'll also visit Wallaby Ranch, a hang-gliding park in Central Florida, and you'll catch a tip for organizing your cockpit. On Monday, August 8, at 4:30pm Eastern,
WTA features a Great Lakes biplane, a new Mooney, and a tour of the Liberty aircraft factory. Satellite subscribers can add the Outdoor Channel "a la carte" for $1.99 a month. For more on this
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FAA Proposes "National Defense Airspace"
The FAA is proposing to fold all the various types of temporarily restricted airspace around Washington, D.C. under a permanent designation called National Defense Airspace. According to AOPA, the
zone will cover 2,000 square miles up to 18,000 feet and will be announced today. It had not been posted on the FAA Web site by 2 a.m. EDT. AOPA President Phil Boyer said the 15-mile no-fly zone
centered on the Washington Monument, with laser warning lights and anti-aircraft missile batteries is adequate to protect the city. "But we take strong exception with the FAA's proposal to make the
temporary outer ring of Washington's defensive airspace -- the Air Defense Identification Zone -- permanent. Boyer said the ADIZ has hampered GA, hurt business and inconvenienced a lot of people since
it was imposed at a time of heightened security when the U.S. was about to send troops to Iraq. Since then, the security posture that justified the ADIZ has reduced substantially but the ADIZ around
Washington lives on.
Boyer says the government hasn't even made the case for the temporary restrictions, let alone creating permanent ones. "No general aviation aircraft has ever been used in a terrorist attack," Boyer
said. "And the government has determined that not a single ADIZ violation was terrorist-related." He said the ADIZ is "operationally unworkable" and the FAA has neither justified the permanent zone,
nor addressed the operational problems. He said GA-friendly alternatives have been presented, but those have apparently been ignored with this proposal. AOPA has proposed that small, slow aircraft be
allowed to operate without the flightplan and transponder requirements now in place because they lack the mass or cargo capacity to cause serious damage. However, federal security officials have
repeatedly stated that their intelligence suggests that small aircraft have been considered for use in terror attacks.
User Fees? ... Which Users?
FAA Administrator Marion Blakey is continuing to call for restructuring of the agency's funding base, a call that sent a chill through many of those attending her Meet the Administrator session at EAA
AirVenture last week. In Oshkosh, she used the phrase "User pays also means user says." In a discussion with reporters in Washington, she again raised the specter of user fees. "I think it is very
realistic and very important to look at a different set of structures of taxes and fees that ties the cost of the system more closely to the revenue that is coming in," she said, according to The
Dallas Morning News. It will be up to Congress to decide what, if any, changes are made but the FAA is acting to help members in their deliberations. Blakey told the reporters that a study is underway
to determine how airports and FAA services are used and by whom. The results will be available as the legislators get ready to ponder the bill to reauthorize the agency. Blakey maintains that the
Aviation Trust Fund, which is derived from airline ticket revenue, is being depleted because of fare reductions, and that there's a fundamental disconnect between those who finance the fund
(passengers) and the FAA. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) did its own study of the fund and determined that it's healthy, but that policy makers had shifted more of the burden
for funding the FAA from general revenue to the fund.
As if on cue, the Government Accountability Office released its own study of FAA finances and it's predicting a train wreck.
According to the GAO, the agency will have a $4 billion deficit by 2010 if something isn't done. The GAO does not look at changing the revenue structure, as Blakey has been doing, and simply warns the
FAA to cut costs, particularly in its Air Traffic Organization, which sucks up 80 percent of the budget. The paradox presented, however, is that somehow the FAA must find the money to invest billions
in more efficient equipment while keeping the existing antiquated (and increasingly expensive) infrastructure operating as traffic volumes grow. The GAO also mentions consolidation of facilities as an
option, something that always faces political opposition as individual senators and representatives fight to keep towers open and those high-paying jobs in their districts.
By far the most costly item in the FAA budget is wages, and the determination to bring labor costs down is the FAA's clear stance as contract negotiations continue with controllers. Last week, Blakey revealed details of those negotiations, including controller demands for 5.6-percent wage increases and
seven-hour work days. She added the agency's proposal for a two-tiered wage system, in which existing workers would not see any cuts but new controllers would be paid less. National Air Traffic
Controllers Association President John Carr said, "We're not interested in discussing the specifics of negotiations in the press ... We're engaged in good faith negotiations and we're disappointed the
FAA doesn't share that sentiment." NATCA spokesman Doug Church said the FAA is attempting to pit worker against worker by concentrating on the pay disparity between controllers and some other civil
servants. Harold Shaitberger, president of the International Association of Firefighters, said he found the tactic offensive and simplistic. "It's clear to us that her efforts to use rhetoric to
divide us are a remedial level union busting tactic," Shaitberger said in a statement. "And all that her comments to the media did was expose her weaknesses in an even basic understanding of public
safety protocol." Transportation Workers Union President Michael O'Brien added that the use of "scarce federal resources to carry out an explicit anti-worker campaign, it is an affront to all working
Americans and a grave threat to aviation safety."
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AVweb's Look Behind The Controls
Doug Rozendaal arrived at Oshkosh flying a DC-3 and left in an F6F Hellcat. He doesn't own either of them, nor does he own any of the Corsairs, B-25s or Mustangs he transports to air shows for owners.
With a small nod and smile he offered, "I've been very lucky in my flying career." Rozendaal's education with warbirds began with flying freight in DC-3s and Beech 18s. These airplanes were not the
well-kept examples seen around Oshkosh. But they provided a good, if hazardous, classroom. One Beech 18 had Rozendaal in IMC handling an emergency with his right hand and holding a cup of urine in his
The flight was an out-and-back to get a replacement part for an automotive assembly line. Rozendaal didn't get a chance to "use the facilities" before launch but figured he could do that while they
loaded up the plane. On landing, he found the forklift waiting. By the time he got out of the Beech, the pallet was being loaded and he was told to climb right back in. No problem, he figured he'd
just use the relief tube after takeoff. He launched back into the clouds and peed into the tube, only to find it clogged. Then a tank ran dry and an engine quit. Welcome to the world of the freight
Even normal operations in a warbird require procedures and systems knowledge you don't see on a Cessna or Columbia. "Every power change in a fighter requires rudder trim. You use rudder trim more than
elevator trim on these airplanes," Rozendaal advises. We learned that climbing into the Corsair is complex enough; put your left foot on a slot in the flap, left hand to a slot in the fuselage, right
foot to a hidden step in the wing, left foot up to that same step, and then swing your legs over and into the cockpit. For everyone's sake, don't slip while you do this. (The cockpit is ten feet off
the ground.) Otherwise, Rozendaal says of the Corsair: "It's a straightforward airplane to fly."
What was it like to fly a Corsair for the first time? "Once I finally got up the nerve to move the stick on the Corsair, I realized it was just like a big RV-4." Rozendaal owns an RV-4 so he felt
right at home. "The Hellcat flies like a Cub -- just look at that big, fat wing ... it's an honest, forgiving airplane. But it isn't fast ... Navy airplanes didn't have to be fast. They just had to
get above the ships and wait for the enemy to come to them." On better days, they'd later have to get stopped on a ship. Super Corsairs were Navy planes designed to climb fast, though. The "Super"
part refers to the 3000-plus-horsepower 28-cylinder R-4360 up front. The engine has seven magnetos on a rotary switch to help diagnose a problem. It idles with the prop at almost zero pitch since any
more pitch sends the Super Corsair taxiing. Only 10 of them were built as Kamikaze killers. "It could still win a time-to-climb [contest] in its class," Rozendaal opines.
Flying the airplanes isn't what keeps people like Rozendaal in them. They are messy, expensive, cantankerous machines. "If you're flying these airplanes because flying them gets your rocks off, then
you won't be in this business for long." It sounds cliché, but dedicated warbird pilots say the motivation burns from another source. It's the kid that come up and says he wants to be a warbird
pilot, or the older gentleman with a misty look in his eyes. That's what matters. "You get these guys in the cockpit and all these stories come out. I ask them 'Have you told these stories to your
family?' ... more often than not they haven't," says Rozendaal. "These stories need to be told -- and remembered." See you next year at the show.
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The FAA has fired nine air traffic controllers at the volatile New York Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) for allegedly failing to admit that they'd sought treatment for stress. It's the latest
chapter in a simmering (sometimes boiling) dispute over the function of the facility, which the FAA claims was effectively taken over by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association membership in
recent years. The nine controllers were accused of falsifying government documents by failing to acknowledge their stress treatment on a form that is part of their routine physical examination. The
union claims the allegations are bogus because the FAA already knows who's taken time off for stress or any other reason. Sick days with pay became one of the contentious points between the agency and
the controllers in New York after a review showed they used far more sick days than any other facility. Under workers' compensation laws, a controller is allowed up to 45 days of paid leave each year.
Union officials told Newsday they believed the firings were intended to discourage controllers from taking sick leave. The fired controllers have 30 days to appeal.
Although it's not a common arrangement, Honda was apparently a little hasty in suggesting its wing-pylon-mounted engines are groundbreaking. Michimasa Fujino, the chief engineer on the project, told the crowd at the aircraft's first public appearance at EAA AirVenture that conventional aerodynamic wisdom
dictates engines should be mounted under the wings or on the fuselage. "It was believed you never put anything above the wing, but I was skeptical of that," he said. As always, when a tidbit of
aviation lore goes astray, AVweb readers are quick to point it out, and we received several e-mails noting that pylon-mounted jets actually made it into production on a German design called the
VFW614. A total of 19 of the small passenger jets were built in the early 1970s but most were bought back by the
manufacturer, Vereinigte Flugtechnische Werke (VFW)-Fokker, in the late 1970s so it wouldn't have to continue supporting them. The Luftwaffe operated three until the early 1990s (the West German
government funded most of the development costs of the airplane). But while Honda put the engines on the wings to make more room in the cabin, VFW-Fokker put them up there to allow for a short, sturdy
undercarriage capable of using unimproved runways. Another reader also told us that NASA had looked at the setup in the 1970s but nothing got off the drawing board.
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It looks like the FAA is going to approve Chicago Mayor Richard Daley's controversial plan to expand O'Hare International Airport (and pave over a couple of small towns and a pioneer cemetery). The
FAA formally endorsed the $15 billion to $20 billion project as the most viable way to relieve the chokepoint in Chicago, which often wreaks havoc on airline schedules throughout the country. Final
approval is expected in September and Daley says work will begin immediately after that. When complete, in 2013, O'Hare will have six parallel and two intersecting runways, a new terminal, parking for
"oversize" aircraft (like the A380?) and more jet bridges. Most important, however, is the expected impact on O'Hare's terrible on-time record, the worst in the country. All this is cold comfort to
the 2,600 people who will lose their homes, the 200 businesses that will have to relocate and the families of 1,300 of the dearly departed who will also be shifting digs (sorry). Local community
governments and activists vow to fight the expansion to the end, saying there are alternatives to the mass destruction.
It will come as no surprise to anyone who was there that EAA AirVenture was bigger and busier this year than it has been in recent years. After a few years of modest (but nonetheless unsettling)
declines, this year's big show boasted a 7-percent increase in attendance to about 700,000, according to figures supplied by EAA media boss Dick Knapinski. A healthy portion of those folks arrived by
air, as evidenced by the jammed aircraft parking and camping areas. (Possibly an indication of pilots' attraction to this year's particularly historic collection of aircraft.) More than 10,000 planes
arrived over the seven days. There were almost 3,000 show planes, including a record number of homebuilts (1,267), 924 vintage planes, 386 warbirds, 196 ultralights, 130 seaplanes and 24 rotorcraft.
The media contingent, undoubtedly bolstered by such newsworthy presentations as SpaceShipOne and Global Flyer plus first appearances of the Cessna Mustang, Eclipse 500 and HondaJet, swelled to 904
from the previous year's 711. On the business side, a total of 789 aviation-related companies set up booths on the grounds and in the hangars. Although the blue-chip list of attractions was likely
largely responsible for the show's resurgence (makes you wonder what they'll do for an encore) EAA President Tom Poberezny said there were other factors at play. "There were three factors we could see
that contributed to the attendance increase this year: the switch to a Monday-Sunday format, which better suited people's travel patterns, ideal weather and the incredible depth and the variety of the
programs in 2005," he said.
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Weather may be the single biggest factor in the runway overrun of an Air France A340 at Toronto's Pearson International Airport on Tuesday. "It was definitely an extreme storm, something we haven't
seen in a long time," Brian Lackey, vice president of operations for the Greater Toronto Airport Authority, told reporters Wednesday. "As we were looking out the window, we were commenting that storm
was extremely severe and we hadn't seen one like that." The plane skidded 200 yards off the end of the runway into a ravine and caught fire but none of the 309 people aboard was seriously hurt.
Canadian Transportation Safety Board officials were to recover data and voice recorders on Wednesday but speculation is the plane encountered either a microburst or wind shear in the final seconds of
its approach and then hydroplaned on the drenched runway. It may also have been struck by lightning The airport was under a red alert, meaning the likelihood of thunderstorms, at the time, but was not
You probably don't know who Bob Chambers is, but if you're one of the thousands of pilots who have watched Rod Machado's Defensive Flying video then you've heard Chamber's voice. Defensive Flying
includes a recording of two MU-2 pilots and ATC as they suffer a double engine failure in IMC over the mountains of British Columbia. Bob Chambers was the copilot on that flight. He had no idea
Machado had made his story famous. He met an AVweb reporter at this year's AirVenture, got to talking about MU-2s and found out he was a celebrity of sorts. Chambers began to retell the events
of 20 years ago and had to sit down as the memories came back.
Chambers and his pilot iced up at 22,000 feet and began to lose altitude Then the left engine quit and soon after, the right. At one point they were dropping over 5000 feet per minute (the VSI was
pegged). The pilots recovered at 3600 feet over a lake surrounded by mountains. "We had both engines in start sequence and I remember wondering if the battery was going to overheat and fall out the
back of the airplane." said Chambers "We looked at each other and realized there was nothing more we could do." Both engines did relight and the pilots climbed out of the valley and landed at Kelonna,
British Columbia. "It was way below minimums, but we didn't care." Machado makes a big deal about how Chambers and his captain never stopped flying the airplane. "I'm just glad others are gaining from
my experience," said Chambers. Machado and Chambers exchanged signatures and handshakes. You never know who you'll run into at Oshkosh.
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Two people in a sport utility vehicle were killed after it was clipped by a Piper Archer that
was landing at a private airport in Georgetown, Del., last week. Three people on the plane were injured...
Mooney Airplane Company CEO Gretchen Jahn has also assumed leadership of the parent company, Mooney Aerospace Group. Jahn joined Mooney a year ago and the company has since doubled production
and sales and claims to be climbing out of the financial crises that have dogged it in recent years...
An icon of the Cold War that still gets plenty of use, the U-2 turned 50 today. Hundreds of workers and guests marked the anniversary at Palmdale, Calif., last week where the fleet of 28
spyplanes is being modernized...
Four skydiving friends died in the crash of a Cessna 172 off the Florida Keys. Pilot Krystal Koch and passengers Egon Sussmann, Piers Littleford and Bruno Asmann were well-known in skydiving
circles. They were traveling to South Florida, possibly to go sailing.
Drop us a line. If it caught your attention, it will probably interest someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to
email@example.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best
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The Savvy Aviator #21: Checking The Oil
The oil in your engine lubricates, cleans and cools. If you pay attention, it also provides some of the best tools available for monitoring the health of your powerplant.
The cartoon adventures of Chuck and the rest of the Roost-Air FBO continue this week as gives back a little of Chuck's own medicine.
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*** PREVIOUS RESULTS ***
Before we left for AirVenture Oshkosh, AVweb asked
readers where they stand on the recent (and continuing)
brouhaha between NATCA and the FAA. We were a bit
facetious in the choices we offered who, us?
and here were your responses:
"NATCA!" dominated the survey, with a full 88% of
respondents pumping their fists in the air to cheer for
overworked and underappreciated controllers.
A much smaller percentage of our readers (only 5%)
were willing to chant "FAA!" on behalf of the federal
Slightly more than that (6% of respondents) seemed to
be fed up with the controversy and voted that we "fire 'em
all and sort it out later" a choice that drew some
criticism of AVweb in the
July 25 edition of AVmail.
*** THIS WEEK'S QUESTION ***
This week, AVweb wants to know what you think about
the changes to the Washington, DC ADIZ. Unfortunately,
we can't offer a wide range of analysis in our answers
we'll have to rely on your letters and commentary to
fill in the gaps but, for the purposes of "QOTW," we'd
like to know which blanket statement comes closest to
matching your attitude.
to chime in.
Have an idea for a new QOTW? Send your suggestions to
This address is
only for suggested QOTW questions, and not for QOTW answers or
this form to send QOTW comments to our AVmail Editor.
Submit a Photo |
Current POTW Winner |
Past POTW Winners
"Picture of the Week" returns today, marking the end of
our annual AirVenture hiatus and boy, did we get some
great photos while we were away at the show this year!
For those of you who are just discovering AVweb, "POTW"
is a weekly feature where we publish our favorite
reader-submitted photos. Each week, we go through all
the submissions and choose the top three photos, plus a few
bonus pics if our submission box is particularly full.
After much debate and a few heated words, we pick one of the
photos as our "POTW" winner and send the photographer an
official, cannot-be-purchase-in-any-store AVweb baseball
Sounds like fun, doesn't it? Trust us: It is.
And you can get in on the action by submitting your own
(The more pics you send us, the more we'll run each week.)
As mentioned above, we've been on hiatus for a couple of
weeks because of Oshkosh, but we're anxious to get back into
the groove. Rather than combine the past few weeks'
entries into one contest, as we have in previous years,
we're going to break it up by week this time and award
three hats for the three weeks that have passed since our
last original "POTW" contest! Our first hat goes
to Shawn Van Horn of Washington, Indiana, whose eye-popping
sunset photo is this week's top winner. Hats also go
to Tom McLaughlin of Battle Creek, Michigan (our July 21
winner) and Pete Thielen of Green Bay, Wisconsin (our July
28 winner). Look for their photos and lots of bonus
pictures! in our
July 21 and
July 28 galleries!
Due to privacy issues, AVweb does not publish e-mail addresses of
readers who submit photos.
*** THIS WEEK'S WINNERS ***
Used with permission
of Shawn Van Horn
"Ready 'n' Waitin'"
Shawn Van Horn of
Washington, Indiana tells us,
"This is what hurricanes look like to Hoosiers, once the
(It's a far better sight than the hurricane aftermaths we
get in the Southeast!)
As Shawn points out, "Hurricanes nearly always are good for
... dramatic sunsets."
The whirlybird here is an Air Evac Bell 206L-1, captured by
at the end of what was surely a hard day's work ... .
here to view a large version of this image
Click here for a medium-sized version
AVweb continues to receive a large number of excellent images for our
POTW contest. Here are some of the runners-up. Click on the links below to view
copyright © Mark E. Stufflebeam
Mark E. Stufflebeam of
made his first trip to AirVenture this year,
where he was greeted by this ominous beginning
to the show. Taken Monday evening as the sun was
setting, Mark's photo reminds us that Mother Nature
is always a VIP at AirVenture Oshkosh.
One more note in our "POTW Primer for Newbies":
Nothing sparks conversation around here like the
topic of digitally manipulated photos and whether
(or not) they should be allowed into the running for
our "Picture of the Week" contest. Keep that in mind.
Used with permission
of Jim Solensky
of Port Charlotte, Florida
goes where only a few have dared to go and
submits a (gasp!) digitally-altered composite to
this week's "POTW" contest. Every time we run
such a composite, we get
who point out how lighting and resolution give
away the "trick" too easily but this one
has us wowed, and we thought we'd
include it for your consideration.
Because you demanded 'em
but, more importantly, because you sent 'em in ...
with permission of Ward Burhanna
"Mother & Child"
Ward Burhanna of
had us humming
Paul Simon tune all
afternoon with his clever caption for this photo
of SpaceShipOne and the White Knight.
"Shot Saturday, July 30," Ward tells us,
"at (where else?) Oshkosh."
with permission of Keith Sremaniak
"Lined Up to Haul the Fish Home"
of Alta Loma, California
reminds us why seaplanes make for such great photos.
with permission of Greg Marshall
And Greg Marshall
of Ottawa, Ontario (Canada)
sees us off this week with "a beautifully cared-for Beech
Staggerwing visiting the Rockcliffe Flying Club.
National Aviation Museum is in the background" and in
the foreground, a reminder that, with AirVenture now behind
the sunny, carefree days of summer are numbered.
Time to go flying, eh?
To enter next week's contest,
A Reminder About Copyrights: Please take a moment to consider the
source of your image before submitting to our "Picture of the Week" contest.
If you did not take the photo yourself, ask yourself if you are indeed
authorized to release publication rights to AVweb. If you're uncertain,
send us an e-mail.
|Sponsor News and Special Offers
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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.
|WORRIED ABOUT BUSTING A REG? YOU SHOULD BE!|
It's all too easy with today's tightened rules and
enforcement. Join the smart pilots who trust Aviation Safety to keep them aware and in the air. Discover this informative, instructive monthly that sharpens your savvy and
air readiness. Subscribe now for big savings from the regular rate at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avsafe/avflash.
|AIRSPORT AVIONICS OFFERS A $100 DISCOUNT & COMPLIMENTARY SHIPPING|
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.
|PHOTON'S WHITE FREEDOM MICRO NOW 2X BRIGHTER!|
Photon, the first name in LED micro-lights, has a new
product for your flying, hunting, and outdoor needs. The white Freedom Micro, already one of the brightest micro-lights available, is now a full 2X brighter, making it hands-down the
brightest single-LED keychain light in production! Order yours today and save! SPECIAL: $10 off any Photon order of $75 or more at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/photon/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.
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:
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:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Freedom, independence, responsibility.
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.