Having trouble viewing this AVwebFlash? View it online. To ensure that you continue to receive this newsletter, please add avweb@homer.belvoir.com to your address book.

Volume 12, Number 19a
May 8, 2006
Trade-A-Plane: The Aviation Marketplace Since 
1937 Use Trade-A-Plane's New Search Feature to Search the Entire Site -- up to 10,000 ads -- or just specific portions from the advertiser and product indices. It's your choice. It's that easy! Call Trade-A-Plane at (800) 337-5263, or go online to "Buy, Sell, Fly!"
Charging For Air Traffic Control back to top 
ATG - A New Dawn of Business 
The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's NewsWire.

Organizers of a small but growing fly-in at Alleghan Airport, near Grand Rapids, Mich., say the FAA intends to charge them $3,200 to set up and staff a temporary tower for their event in late June. Andy Millin, one of the organizers of the West Michigan Fly-In, told AVweb this week that, barring a change of heart from the feds, his group will scrape together the money because they believe the tower is essential to the safe running of the event. "We're not willing to take the chance," Millin said. But by writing that check, Millin said he understands the watershed precedent the group will be setting. "The tower is clearly a safety measure and is well within the mandate of the FAA," Millin said. "We would like to refuse the payment as we feel this is the service the FAA is supposed to be there for. However, this is a genuine safety consideration and we just can't roll the dice on this one." More...

Millin said that local FAA officials tried to cancel the deployment of the temporary tower last year, citing budgetary concerns. A concerted protest by EAA, fly-in officials and the controllers themselves prompted the agency to relent. However, this year, after Millin sent his standard request for the service, he got a letter from Nancy B. Kort, the FAA's area director for central terminal operations, saying that free temporary tower services are a thing of the past. "Due to increased demands on our FAA facilities to manage resources and account for all expenses, we are asking you and all sponsors requesting our services to reimburse the FAA for these costs," she wrote. "We are committed to providing safety services at a reasonable cost and look forward to working with you in the future." More...

Millin said he believes his fly-in is the thin edge of the wedge and that charging for these types of services could become the norm throughout the country if the practice isn't stopped immediately. In fact, he said FAA officials he's spoken with are predicting that major events, such as EAA AirVenture and Sun 'n Fun, will be asked to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to the FAA for ATC services starting in 2007. Messages left for FAA spokesmen in the Great Lakes Region weren't returned but EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski said his organization has heard nothing about being charged for the so-called "World's Busiest Tower" historically manned by volunteers at AirVenture. And he said EAA's position on such a notion is clear. "That would be a user fee and EAA's position is that it opposes user fees," he told AVweb. More...

JA Air 
Center JA Air Center, Your Garmin GPSMap 396 Source, Is Looking to Purchase Used GPS Units, Avionics, and Aircraft
Call (800) 323-5966 for current value, with no purchase required. One of Garmin's largest aviation dealers, JA stocks the new GPSMap 396 with terrain, XM Weather, and music with same-day shipping (before 3pm CT). 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, JA provides FBO services and fuel at Dekalb Taylor Municipal Airport (KDKB) in Dekalb, IL. Call (800) 323-5966, or click for more information.
An Alcohol Problem back to top 
Aviation Safety Magazine

It looks like the future of mogas use in airplanes is limited unless something is done to reduce the U.S.'s growing preference for ethanol as a fuel additive. Most states are considering laws requiring up to 10 percent ethanol in all or most automotive gasoline and the federal government seems poised to make it easier for oil companies to make the switch by reducing, suspending or even canceling a 54-cent-per-gallon tariff on imported ethanol (which is generally a lot cheaper than the domestic variety). That's bad news for aircraft owners who've obtained supplementary type certificates (STCs) allowing the use of automotive fuel in their engines. Ethanol-blended fuels are not permitted under the STCs. More...

With ethanol in the news so much, some aircraft owners are apparently concerned that avgas will also be getting a shot of alcohol. That isn't going to happen, according to Woody Cahall, AOPA's vice president of aviation services. "Members are concerned that ethanol is being added to avgas, which could adversely affect engine operation. Ethanol is not being added to avgas," Cahall said in a statement. But he acknowledged that those with mogas STCs, particularly those with older aircraft designed for the old 80 octane avgas, may find trouble because they aren't allowed to use alcohol blends. Although the use of ethanol is becoming more widespread, EAA has made some headway in easing the impact on aircraft owners. More...

Pilot Insurance 
Center Innovative Life Insurance Products From The Pilot Insurance Center
In addition to the incredible savings pilots get when purchasing life insurance from the Pilot Insurance Center (PIC), PIC offers a wide variety of insurance products. The most popular is the Return of Premium (ROP) term policy. The ROP policy is a hybrid between universal life and term insurance. At the end of the ROP policy term, you get all of your premiums back, and it offers convertibility options. For more information on ROP benefits and features, or any other coverage, call PIC at (800) 380-8376, or visit online.
AirVenture Countdown back to top 

You know spring is here when the AirVenture NOTAM is published. The bible for those planning on flying to the world's biggest fly-in (July 24-30) is a must-read for everyone making the trip by air -- even if they've done it a dozen times before. Chances are, if you're reading this you'll simply download the online version but hard-copy pamphlets are available for free, also. Since channeling thousands of aircraft, ranging from gyrocopters to airliners, into a single airport in a compressed time period is an evolving art, there are always a few changes to the procedures and this year is no exception. More...

Last year's event is a tough act to follow (SpaceShipOne, GlobalFlyer, HondaJet) but aviation is such a diverse endeavor, and AirVenture such a huge show, that there's never any shortage of things that you just can't see anywhere else. For instance, warbird buffs will be pleased to know that one of the largest gatherings of World War II heavy bombers will be at this year's show. One of two flying examples of the Lancaster bomber left in the world will be making the trip from the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum to join a B-29, a B-24 and up to five B-17s at AirVenture. And, can you believe the most popular airplane of all time turns 50 this year? More...

Don't Pass Up the Chance to Receive a $50 Gift Certificate to Sporty's!
Does the brand of avionics on your plane matter? Make it known! Take a 10-minute survey to express which avionics brands you prefer. Upon completion, you will be entered to win one of ten $50 gift certificates to Sporty's. Click here to access survey.
News Briefs back to top 

Organizers of the Monaco Air Duluth Airshow are getting a hard-won lesson in public relations after their president told the owners of six homes bordering the airport they'd have to be somewhere else during the show. Ryan Kern told the six families that since their houses were in the air show box, they'd have to leave home from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for each of the three days (July 5-7) of the performance (he did offer them air show passes), according to the Duluth News Tribune. Well, the good folks of Lavacque Road in Hermantown, Minn., are reasonable folks who don't appear to want to spoil anyone's fun but they did kind of balk at Kern's apparently self-imposed powers of eviction. The local police also noted that private property rights supersede the air show's operational challenges. Fortunately, cooler heads (and a little spending money) prevailed. More...

It may be the ultimate irony that airline pilots can easily find lucrative jobs -- as long as they're willing to travel. According to a recent report in The Wall Street Journal, American pilots are flying the coop on cash-starved, morale-depressed, pension-gutting domestic carriers and landing high-paying jobs in Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai. Former U.S. Airways pilot Brian Murray now works for Emirates Airlines and says it's like returning to the Golden Age of aviation in the U.S. He told the Journal that pilots are "treated with respect in this part of the world. We're driven to work. We're put in four- and five-star hotels, on the concierge floors. Captains are treated as vice presidents of the organization." And there's no shortage of work. More...

The Best Aviation Weather Service for Cell Phones Now Available!
WxServer's Version 6 is chock-full of new features, with a simpler, more powerful menu structure.  NexRad radar maps and satellite pictures are zoomable, and Version 6 takes maximum advantage of any phone's available screen size.  Put NexRad maps centered on every U.S. airport, satellite pictures centered on more than 95% of airports worldwide, METARs, TAFs, and even Winds Aloft maps in your pocket. Aviation weather that's ready wherever and whenever when you need it.  SPECIAL: AVweb readers receive $10 off the regular annual subscription rate. Click here.
News Briefs back to top 

Vacationers heading for the open road this summer might want to pick a route to their local airport. With gas prices topping $3 a gallon, airfare on some routes might be cheaper than driving or close enough in cost that the speed and convenience will tip the balance. "With the price of gas, you have to evaluate closely whether you're saving much by not flying," Stan Gadek, chief financial officer of AirTran Airways, told Knight Ridder Newspapers. Although fuel prices have driven up airfares, there's still fierce competition on well-traveled routes. But checking airfares shouldn't be your only mathematical exercise. It could be that flying yourself will be comparable to driving. More...

A former Vietnam helicopter pilot hailed as a hero for his emergency landing of a DC-3 on a residential street in Ft. Lauderdale last year is facing 20 charges relating to what authorities discovered in the plane. The DC-3 was carrying a load of granite bound for the Bahamas when it went down. Authorities subsequently discovered there was no customs paperwork with the rock and they also allege that pilot Charles Riggs doesn't have the FAA's authorization to fly cargo to the Bahamas, something they claim he'd done numerous times in the two years prior to the accident. The most serious charge is the lack of customs declaration but Riggs' lawyer, Chris Mancini, said Riggs intended to stop at a nearby airport to get the form. "They'll never prove that he intended to violate the law in any way," Mancini told The Associated Press. More...

Exxon Elite Prevents Piston Engine Wear
Aircraft owners often ask "How do I know how well my oil is working?" Oil analysis provides the answer, also measuring which brand works best. And which does work best? According to an evaluation by ExxonMobil of used oil samples provided by an independent laboratory, one brand -- Exxon Aviation Oil Elite 20W-50 -- is most effective in preventing wear in aircraft piston engines. Visit online to learn more.
News Briefs back to top 

A 16-year-old Tennessee boy who took a Piper Cherokee on a wild joyride last Feb. 1, possibly to impress his girlfriend, has been put on a year's probation by a youth court. Nathan Frost, of Rockvale, has also been ordered not to apply for a pilot certificate until he's 18. The boy pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment, theft of a truck, attempted burglary and vandalizing a mailbox in the spectacular example of teenage drama that culminated with a pre-dawn buzzing of a neighborhood. Among the witnesses were amazed sheriff's deputies who said it was like watching an air show and described the boy as a "good pilot." More...

A Boise, Idaho, pilot can expect a call from the FAA (if he hasn't already had one) after authorities in Sun Valley reported that an aircraft landed on a runway, littered with heavy equipment, that had been closed for some extension work. But, according to SunValleyonline, what particularly annoyed the folks at Friedman Field was that the pilot declared a fuel emergency to justify his April 27 landing and then took off again, from the same closed runway, without taking on any fuel. The airport operations manager told the news service the pilot took off "without clearance, without approval and in defiance of the airport manager's directive." In the meantime, he'd dropped off a passenger (believed to be his sister) who grabbed a cab and left the airport. More...

Doc Blue's Emergency Medical Kit -- Don't Leave Home Without It!
Do you carry a first-aid kit in your airplane or car? AVweb's Dr. Brent Blue says drugstore first-aid kits are packed with mostly useless stuff. Dr. Blue has assembled a traveling medical kit for dealing with all sorts of medical problems, based on his long experience as an emergency room doctor, frequent traveler, pilot, outdoorsman, and dad. It would cost more than $500 to duplicate this kit, but it's available on sale from Aeromedix for $333. Order by calling (888) 362-7123, or go online.
News in Brief back to top 

Vietnam-era carrier will be sunk as reef...
Seawind says it took nine orders at Sun 'n Fun...
Diamandis to get Lindbergh Award. More...

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 newstips@avweb.com. Our best stories start with you. More...

Online Now: Take today's news with you via AVweb's downloadable podcasts. Find exclusive interviews featuring FAA administrator Marion Blakey, Cirrus Design's Alan Klapmeier, Scott Crossfield, and more. AVweb's Podcast index, is available online -- pick and choose your particular interets, or subscribe free to AVweb's podcasts and receive them automatically for listening on your computer, iPod, or while traveling with any MP3 player. You'll hear things you won't find anywhere else. More...

Your #1 Source for Cessna Aircraft Parts -- CessnaParts.com
CessnaParts.com offers exceptional service and support to Cessna Aircraft owners and operators. With competitive discounts on everything for Cessna Single- and Multi-Engine aircraft, which means savings to you! Go online and see for yourself!
Your Favorite FBOs back to top 


Nominate an FBO |Rules | Tips | Questions | Winning FBOs

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to AIRFLITE at KLGB, Long Beach, Calif.


Keep those nominations coming.

Click here to nominate your favorite FBO and here for complete contest rules

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBO's in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!


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, click here.
Features back to top 

CEO of the Cockpit #57: Mentors
Don't let experienced pilots convince you they got where they are solely through their own efforts. All good pilots had folks who helped them out along the way, including AVweb's CEO of the Cockpit.



Reader mail this week about the GAP diesel engine, fuel prices and more.


Benefit Aviation and Yourself with the NAA Platinum Visa(R) Card
In addition to favorable Visa(R) rates, National Aeronautic Association (NAA) cardholders receive benefits including discounted rates on NAA membership and on 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 Chase with every purchase made on the NAA Platinum Visa(R) card. These contributions help NAA preserve aviation heritage by supporting prestigious awards presentations and national aviation record certifications. For more information, visit the NAA web site.
AVwebBiz back to top 

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...



Bonanza & Baron Owners: Learn to Save Thousands on Maintenance
The 10,000-member American Bonanza Society is sponsoring a weekend-long Savvy Owner Seminar by maintenance expert Mike Busch November 4-5 in Mobile, Alabama (BFM), including a TCM factory tour. Seminars are open to all GA aircraft owners! In one information-packed weekend, Mike teaches how to save literally thousands on maintenance costs, year after year. For details and to reserve your space, go online.

Your Aircraft-Buying Helper -- Aviation Consumer's Used Aircraft Guide
Dreaming about your next plane? Ready for a closer look at that plane in the ad? Need to know what your plane is worth? Don't consider buying or selling without the Aviation Consumer's 10th edition Used Aircraft Guide. Now available for the first time on CD, for just $29.95 with NO-COST shipping and handling -- over 38% off the retail price. Order now.

Aviation Consumer Helps Pilots Buy Smart
Get immediate no-cost access to more than 75 of Aviation Consumer's acclaimed Used Aircraft Guides, plus reviews of hundreds of aviation products, when you order a money-saving subscription to Aviation Consumer today. And as an Aviation Consumer subscriber, you'll have unlimited no-cost use of the ratings-packed AviationConsumer.com archives. Order now

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, click here.

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 personal standard of IFR operating practices, including incorporation of checklists, flows, callouts, briefings, and the "fly by the numbers" method of aircraft control. Order online.

The Lighter Side Of Flight back to top 

While working as a controller at Ellsworth Approach Control in the 80's, I heard this exchange.

ATC: Western 474, Ellsworth Approach Control is utilizing a certain phase of the radar called circular polarization, which allows us to depict only the most severe areas of weather on the radar display.

[Long Pause...]

Western 474: Approach, say again, please.

[Without error, ATC repeated the alert, (which I had never heard before!)]

[Second Long Pause...]

Western 474: Approach, we don't know what's going on down there, but the co-pilot seems to think that somebody just circumsized a polar bear. More...

Names Behind The News back to top 

AVwebFlash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

Today's issue was written by news writer Russ Niles (bio).

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team.

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

Freedom, independence, responsibility.