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Volume 11, Number 46b November 17, 2005

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

STATE OF THE FAA, 2005...
On Tuesday, the FAA released its latest version of its Flight Plan, setting strategy and priorities for the agency through 2010, and Administrator Marion Blakey made her annual "State of the FAA" speech to the staff, carried by satellite to field offices around the nation. She listed the FAA's achievements for 2005 -- coping with Hurricane Katrina, launching DRVSM (Domestic Reduced Vertical Separation Minimums), zero airline fatalities, and the privatization of Flight Service Stations. The failures were in lowering the GA accident rate and reducing reports of operational errors for Air Traffic Control. To improve the accident rate, she said, the FAA will continue to work with the GA Joint Steering Committee -- a government/industry group that studies accidents and makes recommendations to improve safety. More...

...WITH MANY CHALLENGES AHEAD...
Blakey said the FAA must deal with three immediate challenges -- building a next-generation air transportation system that incorporates new technology, operating more like a business and changing how the FAA is financed. "They are all interrelated," Blakey said. "Each depends on the other." She also cited the ongoing contract negotiations with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA). "We cannot and will not sign a contract that we cannot afford," she said. "The outcome of these negotiations will fundamentally affect the future of this agency. We want a deal that's fair and equitable. ... And we're hopeful that we'll reach a voluntary agreement." More...

...AOPA AND NATCA RESPOND
NATCA didn't even wait for Blakey to give the speech before going on the attack. In a news release sent out the day before, NATCA predicted Blakey would paint a "rosy picture" of the state of the nation's aviation system -- a picture that NATCA sees very differently. NATCA cited inadequate staffing, outdated and broken-down equipment, and management denials that safety issues exist. On Tuesday, AOPA chimed in that the new Flight Plan is still improperly focused on user fees. "There is a fundamental disagreement between the FAA and AOPA about whether the aviation trust fund is running out of money," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. More...

AIRCRAFT SPRUCE REDUCES PRICING
Aircraft Spruce just reduced the price on the Teklitez to $123.95 from $198.95 — a $75.00 reduction! TekLitez feature ELF (Electro Lumens Fiber), a flexible, thin, clear fiber that is energized by the inverter. The fiber produces a blue neon light, resulting in 360° of instrument lighting. Easy to install. Illuminates up to six round or square instruments. The small, thin ELF is Super-Glued into place behind the panel. The inverter is 2" cube, which goes anywhere behind the panel. Life expectancy is over 20,000 hours. Dimmers are included. Experimental aircraft only. Call 1-877-4SPRUCE, or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/spruce/avflash.

CUB REGALIA IN DISPUTE...
A bright-yellow taildragger with a black lightning-bolt stripe means "Cub" to many aviators, but with a kit industry awash in Cub-a-likes just who has the right to use those colors and that name for production aircraft has come into dispute. Cub Crafters, of Yakima, Wash., has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Texas against American Legend Aircraft Co. , claiming that Cub Crafters has rights to the names "Cub" and "Legend," plus the yellow-with-black design. Cub Crafters builds the Sport Cub light sport aircraft (LSA) and the Part 23-certified Top Cub, and has been rebuilding Cubs since at least 1986. Legend Aircraft, of Sulphur Springs, Texas, builds the Legend Cub LSA that went on the market just this year. More...

...AWAITING A LEGAL OUTCOME
Since the legal matter is pending, neither party was willing to say much about it. Todd Simmons, spokesman for Cub Crafters, told AVweb in an e-mail that "Our company policy is not to comment specifically on legal matters or pending litigation. ... We are bringing a variety of internal and external company resources to bear on protecting the integrity of the intellectual property that we have invested in and developed over our twenty-five year history. Any current proceedings toward that end are consistent with similar efforts and actions taken in the past." Tim Elliott, spokesman for Legend Aircraft Co., told AVweb on Tuesday: "We believe that the lawsuit and their claims have absolutely no merit. We intend to continue our strong defense of the case." More...

WATCH LIGHTSPEED'S MACH 1 HEADSET VIDEO ONLINE
The Mach 1 in-the-ear headset offers up to 40dB of passive protection and is loaded with features and style. The magnesium alloy headset weighs under an ounce and comes equipped with a feather-weight gooseneck boom.  Specially designed ear plugs comfortably block noise before it has an opportunity to enter the ear canal.  High-fidelity speakers deliver crisp, clear voice and stereo music. The streamlined control box provides cell phone/music input, stereo/mono options, and volume control. For availability or to order LightSPEED's Mach 1 headset, visit a LightSPEED dealer or call (800) 332-2421. Watch the video at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/litspeed/video/avflash.

TOUGH TIMES FOR AIRLINE WORKERS...
How tough is it? Well, on Friday you might have run into FedEx pilots picketing outside your local FedEx Kinko's store when you stopped by for some copies. The pilots, who are members of the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), have been working without a contract for more than a year. They say the company's record profits now are going only to executives and investors, while workers no longer get a share. Meanwhile, pilots at Delta Air Lines are threatening to strike if the company succeeds in an effort to void their contract in bankruptcy court. A pilot strike would be equivalent to "murder-suicide," the company said Monday, since it would likely shut down the carrier and put it out of business for good. Monday, Northwest Airlines pilots chose a different strategy. More...

...AS GLOBALIZATION HITS HOME
Meanwhile, the Department of Transportation has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that would change the law that governs foreign ownership and control of U.S. airlines, and the proposal has caused an uproar. Continental Airlines called the proposal "a blatant attempt to circumvent the law that DOT has been unable to convince Congress to change." The DOT proposal is intended "to satisfy the European Union that its citizens will be allowed to control U.S. airlines," Continental said in a news release. ALPA's president, Capt. Duane Woerth, agreed, and added that members of Congress are "very unhappy with the administration's jurisdictional grab." More...

THE SJ30-2 IS THE WORLD'S FASTEST LIGHT BUSINESS JET
Not only is it fast; it has intercontinental range — 560 mph and over 2800 sm range. The SJ30-2 is the most advanced light business jet in the sky today, the perfect package of speed, range, and good looks. For details, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/sino/avflash.

CHANGES IN STORE FOR LAX FSDO
Flight Standards District Offices in Southern California are slated for consolidation, and this will mean moving about two dozen inspectors out of the FSDO at Los Angeles International Airport, the FAA said yesterday. "No jobs are being lost nor is headcount being reduced; we are simply going to be moving our aviation inspectors closer to where the work is -- which is generally not at LAX but elsewhere in Southern California," FAA spokesman Donn Walker told AVweb. The announcement has caused some concern among staffers at LAX, according to an inspector who spoke to AVweb. More...

SANDEL, KOLLSMAN WORKING ON HEADS-UP DISPLAYS FOR GA
Sandel Avionics and Kollsman, Inc., announced last week they will work together to develop advanced heads-up displays for GA cockpits. Initial efforts will focus on integrating Sandel's advanced displays with Kollsman's small-footprint heads-up display, the MicroHUD, the companies said in a news release. A follow-on program will add Kollsman's new GAViS, a heads-down, forward-looking infrared capability, to Sandel's display products. In both cases, the object will be to reduce the size and cost of these advanced display technologies, making them available to corporate and general aviation. More...

PROTECT & SHINE YOUR AIRCRAFT
WITH A NAME YOU KNOW & TRUST — AEROSHELL

AeroShell Flight Jacket products are specifically designed for general aviation aircraft. The AeroShell Flight Jacket Kit Bag contains all six AeroShell Flight Jacket Polish and Cleaners, along with the application pad and cleaning cloths. To order the best in shine and protection for your aircraft, go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/shell/avflash.

NEW 747-8 FAMILY OF AIRCRAFT LAUNCHED
Boeing has gone back and forth for years on the fate of its 747 line, but Monday the company announced a decision -- they will go forward with the 747-8, stretched and upgraded, available as a freighter or a 446-seat passenger jet. The company already has orders for 18 freighters, which will be 18 feet longer than the current 747-400 version. Those orders are worth $5 billion. "The 747-8 will use the technologies of the 787 Dreamliner to ...offer greater fuel efficiency, improved operating economics, and be more friendly to the environment with reduced noise and emissions," said Alan Mulally, CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. More...

NEXT FOR SPACEDEV -- CREW SHUTTLE TO SPACE STATION
Taking the private space industry to the next phase beyond suborbital tourist flights, SpaceDev announced yesterday that it has a plan for a six-passenger vehicle that could provide routine, safe crew access to the International Space Station -- replacing the Space Shuttle -- for a fraction of the cost of traditional programs. SpaceDev said if funding is forthcoming, multiple manned suborbital test flights could launch by 2008, and manned test flights to orbit by 2010. SpaceDev, of Poway, Calif., built the hybrid rocket motor that powered SpaceShipOne. CEO Jim Benson said yesterday the ship could also be used for tourist flights. More...

THE COLUMBIA 350 & COLUMBIA 400 HAVE A NEW CORPORATE NAME
The Lancair Company has re-branded itself as Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation. The manufacturers of the Columbia 350 and Columbia 400, the world's fastest certified piston aircraft, made the change as part of an ongoing campaign to develop a unique identity for these premium aircraft. The schedule for the Fly Columbia Tour, an interactive Columbia experience, is posted online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/columbia/avflash.

FAA AIR SHOW POLICY CHANGES OK WITH EAA
The FAA has listened to the concerns of EAA and the air show community, and an updated list of changes to air show policies shows that most of EAA's recommendations will be included when the policies are updated, EAA said on Monday. "We are very pleased that FAA worked with EAA, the International Council of Air Shows and other groups as the agency developed these policy statements," said Earl Lawrence, EAA's vice president of industry and regulatory affairs. The tweaks mean that warbird shows will still be able to enter the show airspace from different directions, when flying above 1,000 AGL. Media photographers will still be allowed to approach closer than the general public. Also, landmarks will still be OK to use as corner markers for airspace boxes when practical. More...

ON THE FLY...
$100,000 raised for Katrina at NBAA annual meeting in Orlando...
NPRM would reduce flammability of fuel tank vapors in large jets...
Update online on investigation of Air France accident in Toronto...
AVweb columnist Rick Durden featured in a Grist magazine interview...
Pilots at Sea-Tac keep mistaking taxiway for runway...
The Sport Pilot Tour stop in Dallas drew best crowd yet. More...

AVEMCO IS COMMITTED TO SAFETY — AND SAVINGS
Avemco's Safety Rewards Program allows pilots to improve their flying skills and reduce their insurance premiums at the same time. By completing a course in King Schools' CD-ROM Practical Risk Management series, and by completing Avemco-approved recurrent training, pilots can receive up to 10% off their annual insurance premiums. For details about Avemco's Safety Rewards Program — and to discover how you can take to the sky with increased confidence — call (888) 241-7891, or visit AvemcoDIRECT insurer of general aviation aircraft and pilots since 1961 — at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avemco/avflash.

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. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part. More...

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
_______
COLUMNS
As the Beacon Turns #95: I Am The Master
Now that glass cockpits can be found in even the most traditional of planes such as Cubs, AVweb's Michael Maya Charles is very concerned that we're forgetting who's actually in charge of flying the aircraft.

More...

WIN THE LATEST GARMIN GPSMAP 396!
LEK Consulting, a leading market research company, is running a survey exclusively for aircraft owners and potential owners.  The results will help determine the specifications for the Next Generation Aircraft for the General Aviation industry in the U.S.  The survey should take approximately 15 minutes to complete. Survey with terms and conditions of entry — and chance to win the GPS — can be found at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/lek/avflash.

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...

AVIDYNE'S NEW TAS600 SYSTEMS DELIVER ACTIVE-SURVEILLANCE
TRAFFIC AWARENESS PROTECTION UNDER $10,000

With pricing starting at $9,990, Avidyne's new TAS600 systems set a new price-performance standard for active-surveillance traffic capability and make important safety systems affordable for owners of light GA aircraft.  TAS600 systems show standard TAS symbology on display systems from 15 different manufacturers, including Avidyne's Entegra and EX500/5000 MFDs; Garmin's G1000, MX20, and 400/500-series; as well as displays from Honeywell, Collins, Chelton, Sandel, and others.  For complete details, go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
Lightgun signals. We all have to learn them. Sometimes our instructors even help us remember them. This week, we want to know if you've ever used them. PLUS: Results of last week's question on the glamour and romance of commercial piloting. More...

BENNETT AVIONICS WILL MAKE YOUR HOLIDAY
DEADLINE WITH UPGRADED SHIPPING

Bennett Avionics stocks a complete line of used avionics that will add tremendous capability to any aircraft at a price that makes sense. Till December 31st, Bennett will upgrade domestic ground shipping to 2nd Day. Call the Bennett Avionics specialists at (860) 653-7295 (PCT), or go online to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/bennett/avflash.



GIFT-GIVING MADE EASY
Visit AVweb's Holiday Shopping Page

Featuring products and services from AVweb's
sponsors — including very special holiday offers!
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AVWEB'S PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
The holiday season is upon us, and the spirit of giving is alive and well among "Picture of the Week" contributors! This week saw submissions soar upward of 100 again, with 46 photos making it into our "final round." There were so many eye-popping, dynamic photos we should have included a pair of 3-D glasses with this installment of "POTW"! So what are we gabbing for? Settle into your big comfy leather office chair, and let's look at some pictures! 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  
THE PERFECT "ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL" GIFT FROM OREGON AERO
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GAMI CUSTOMERS RAVE ABOUT A SMOOTHER RIDE AND SAVING FUEL
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MIKE BUSCH ... THE SAVVY AVIATOR ... THE PERFECT GIFT
During 2006, aircraft maintenance expert Mike Busch will be offering his acclaimed weekend Savvy Owner Seminar nationwide. Learn how to have a safer, more reliable aircraft while saving thousands on maintenance costs, year after year.  For seminar details and to reserve space for yourself (or as a gift), go to http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/savvy/avflash.
A $39 GIFT FOR CESSNA & PIPER PILOTS THEY'LL APPRECIATE ALL YEAR
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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.
FED UP WITH BIG BILLS FOR ROUTINE AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE?!
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NOVEMBER'S FLYING MAGAZINE REPORTS ON SECOND-GENERATION PIPER MERIDIAN
The first single with a three-display Avidyne glass cockpit. Also in November's issue: America's legendary Cub is reborn as Legend Aircraft's all-new-construction light sport aircraft; IFR emergencies from Tom Benenson and Richard Collins; and more. Order a Flying subscription for yourself (or as a holiday gift) at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/flying/avflash.
SOME PILOTS SEEM TO HAVE IT TOGETHER, WHILE YOU LACK CONFIDENCE
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SPONSOR NEWS
AVIATION CONSUMER'S DECEMBER ISSUE REVIEWS:
Electronic flight bags, flashlights, airport bikes, and ASA's "On Top Trainer." PLUS: "Insurance for Old Guys" shows how a training certificate from FlightSafety or Simcom might help lower insurance costs; and "ECI Rod Recall" — the FAA's recall of 1,200 connecting rods for Lycoming engines made by Engine Components, Inc. just doesn't add up and could cost some owners $2,000 or more in unnecessary repairs and replacements. December's "Used Aircraft Guide" highlights the Cessna 337, a best buy. You can't afford NOT to have an Aviation Consumer subscription. Order at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avcons/avflash.
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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 Mary Grady:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#mgrady
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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