Number 2a — January 9, 2006|
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This issue of AVweb's AVflash is brought to you by ... ZuluWorks
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The Top Headlines From
AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
SUSPECT LYCOMING CRANKS
Lycoming is casting its recall net a little wider for engines with
potentially faulty crankshafts and the FAA is reinforcing that with
yet another proposed AD. Since 2002, Lycoming has replaced hundreds of
cranks containing suspected metallurgical faults and now nearly 400
more have been added to the list. In a Nov. 30 supplement (check there to see if your engine is
affected) to a mandatory service bulletin issued last July, Lycoming
said a single failure (no accident involved) prompted the expanded
recall. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking issued by the
FAA on Jan. 6 duplicates the company's call for the affected engines
to be repaired within 50 hours or six months, whichever comes first.
The MSB supplement and NPRM affect (L)O-360, (L)IO-360, and AEIO-360
THE NUMBERS MATCH
If your engine is on the list in the MSB supplement, Lycoming wants
you to phone them (570-323-6181) or fax them (570-327-7160) to arrange
its return. If your engine was rebuilt or had the crankshaft replaced
after March 1, 1999, you need to hunt down the repair records and find
the crankshaft serial number to compare to the list contained in the
MSB supplement. If your number comes up, you need to call or fax, too.
Lycoming will cover a "reasonable" amount of labor for the removal and
reinstallation of the engine. At the factory, it will be disassembled,
inspected and the cranks and bearings replaced. More...
AWOS SYSTEM STRIVES FOR LEGITIMACY
What if you built a better mousetrap but government regulations made
the cheese prohibitively expensive? That's the situation the owner of
a small electronics company says he finds himself in as he tries to
bring to market what he says is an affordable (about $1,000 per
installation), effective and user-friendly system to display automated
weather observation system (AWOS) and automated surface observation
system (ASOS) information via the Internet. About five years ago, Bill
Stanwyck, of Newburgh, N.Y.-based Stanwyck Avionics, designed software that would
enable an ordinary PC to gather, record and upload the weather sensor
data to a Web site. There, it's displayed both in text and graphic form. The
information is updated every minute and the graphic display shows wind
speed and direction trends for the previous five minutes and even
calculates the crosswind component. "I think it's a useful tool for
pilots," Stanwyck told AVweb. More...
AWOS INFORMATION NO FAA "CERTIFICATION"
Stanwyck said his software is designed to interface with any of the
more than 1,500 AWOS and ASOS installations across the country by
plugging into already-existing data ports. But the FAA won't let him
physically attach anything to the equipment, saying it is proprietary
and he must have written permission from the companies that
manufactured the gear before he can plug in with FAA approval. Since
Stanwyck began the crusade, those companies have come up with Internet
distribution systems of their own (which Stanwyck claims they copied
from him), and Stanwyck said it's unlikely he'll get permission now.
Stanwyck said the services offered by the original equipment
manufacturers (OEMs) are prohibitively expensive for many smaller
airports while his is a fraction of their prices. More...
METHODS TRIPLE COSTS
The FAA's position stopped Stanwyck dead in his tracks for a couple of
years but he didn't stop thinking. That eventually led to him design a
system that can transcribe data captured from the UHF radio signal
that some AWOS and ASOS stations emit and then put it up on the net.
It works, but the receiver alone triples the equipment cost and it's
another device to maintain. But even though the FAA has said it will
allow him to gather the data in this way, it's not endorsing the end
product. Even though the information is exactly what can be obtained
over the phone or the radio, the FAA has told Stanwyck that his Web
pages must carry a disclaimer stating that the information is not to
be used for aviation purposes. More...
BACKS DOWN ON NOISE RESTRICTIONS
The FAA has backed off on implementation of noise restrictions that
could have prevented owners of thousands of older aircraft from
getting any modifications, through Supplementary Type Certificates, to
their planes that had anything to do with how much sound they might
create. After hearing from more than 30 groups and individuals, the
agency decided that turning back the clock on already-certified
designs would be both expensive and potentially unworkable, so the new noise standards will apply only to clean-sheet
designs for which the certification is received after Feb. 3, 2006.
"Following consideration of all the comments, the FAA has determined
that the impact of a new noise standard on already certificated
aircraft could be significant," the final rule says. "We also realized
that given the number of STCs, the impact is almost impossible to
estimate for the fleet of single engine airplanes." More...
SPORT SHOW THIS WEEK
Although Mother Nature disrupted the timing, the second U.S. Sport
Aviation Expo will get off the ground from Jan. 12 to Jan. 15 at
Sebring Regional Airport in Florida. The event, which features only
aircraft that qualify under the Light Sport Aircraft classification,
was supposed to be held in late October but Hurricane Wilma blew that
plan away. All the palm branches and shingles have been cleaned up and
organizers are expecting another big turnout after last year's
first-ever event drew thousands of attendees and hundreds of
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MILLION SETTLEMENT IN CRASH SUIT
In what may be the largest settlement of its kind in North Carolina
history, the family of a Concord, N.C., couple settled for a total of
$26 million from four companies after the couple was killed by the
post-crash fire when the Cessna 421 on which they were passengers went
down in Mecklenburg County in 1999. David and Ann Drye, along with
pilot Kelly Ward and another passenger, Mark Carlson, died after the
pilot reported the right engine had failed. Teledyne Continental, the
maker of the engine, was assessed $20 million of the settlement, while
engine overhauler Ram Aircraft paid $3 million. Component supplier
Vibratech was hit with $2.8 million and Stevens Aviation, which
maintained the plane, paid $250,000. According to the NTSB report, metal fragments were found in the
right engine's oil sump from the starter adapter needle bearing but
"the right engine assembly did not exhibit any condition that would
have prevented it from operating." More...
RUNWAY SHORTENED IN NAME OF SAFETY
The FAA and local authorities are spending more than $5 million to
tear up 324 feet of runway at Indianapolis International Airport. But
both insist the amputation won't affect the utility or safety of the
airport, which is undergoing a $1 billion reconstruction. In fact, the
jackhammers are being called in for safety reasons. The section of
runway in question is at one end of Indy's 7,604-ft. crosswind runway.
It's being eliminated because a FedEx hangar blocks controllers' view
of that portion of runway from the new 340-foot tall tower. Officials
insist the runway shortening has been part of the construction plan
all along and is regarded as the most practical solution to the
sight-line problem. It's not that Indy is short of runways, however.
We're not sure who learned more from a mishap on a busy freeway near
San Jose, Calif., last week. An unidentified flight instructor and his
student landed their Piper Cherokee on busy I-680, near Fremont, after
they reportedly "ran out of fuel" on a sightseeing trip, according to
the Bay area's Daily Review. "It was a perfect landing" said witness
Gary Page, who was among the motorists who got out of the airplane's
way as it glided onto the road. Neither occupants nor aircraft
suffered any harm (physically, anyway) and the Cherokee was trucked
away a few hours later. Reporters described the pilots as behaving
sheepishly. Neither would comment. More...
EMPLOYEES GET PAY HIKE
What's FAA for a raise? How about "organizational success increase."
Whatever it's called, it will mean an extra 3.1 percent in the pay
packets of employees as long as they meet "minimum performance
standards." Administrator Marion Blakey linked the raise to what she
termed the successful achievement of the agency's goals under its
operational plan, known as the Flight Plan. "The real credit for this
goes to you who delivered an outstanding performance under the Flight
Plan," Blakey said. The agency has also eliminated a payband freeze
that had capped the salaries of some of its most senior employees.
NAA AND HELP SHAPE THE NEXT CENTURY OF FLIGHT|
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SHOW PILOT DIES HAULING FREIGHT
Described by colleagues as "one of the top three or four performers"
in the business, air show pilot Eric Beard, 48, died Friday when the
Piper Seneca he was flying crashed in fog about 400 yards short of the
runway at Skagit Regional Airport near Burlington, Wash. Beard was
perhaps better-known for flying a rare Yak-54 nicknamed Russian
Thunder in air shows all over the world. On Friday he was flying
for Airpac Airlines, a Seattle-based cargo company. He worked
part-time for Airpac and also worked for Boeing. His last transmission
to Whidbey Island approach was normal and there was no indication of
an emergency, according to Tom Peterson, air search coordinator with
the state department of transportation. More...
Four-year-old makes no-fly list...
Twin Star gains 187 pounds (of
EASA OK'd payload)...
U-2 may be retired by 2011...
damaged in accident with fuel truck. More...
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NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
What have you heard? There might be something to it. If you've
heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, don't be
shy. Submit news tips via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You're a part
of our team ... often, the best part. More...
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FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES
AVmail: January 6, 2006
Reader mail this
week about the TSA chasing airplane "hunters," IFR vs. VFR, airline
pilot woes and more. More...
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
What's New for January 2006
This month AVweb's survey of
the latest products and services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft
owners brings you portable oxygen, micro lights, an ultralight/LSA
engine and more.
Insuring the Professionally Managed Aircraft: A Candid Discussion
of Fleet Policies
If you buy a plane and then put it on the
flight line at a flight school or charter outfit -- or have it
operated by an aircraft management company -- who takes out the
insurance policy? The answer is different depending on several factors
you may not have thought about.
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An oldie, but a goodie...
Overheard while flying freight near
ATC: F1243, desend and maintain 12-thousand.
F1234: 12-thousand, F1234.
ATC: F1234, can you make it to 12 in one minute?
F1234: Negative. The captain requests I inform you we're
going as fast as this Fokker will go.
ATC: ...Right. Lufthansa 456, turn right heading 330,
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YOU FLY IFR, YOU'LL WANT TO READ THE FEBRUARY ISSUE OF IFR
Some highlights of the February issue: "The
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