Reason #1 Pilots First
Leading the aviation industry isn't about bragging rights. Being No. 1 is about providing pilots with all of the things that make owning a Cessna such an irresistible value. Things like
safety. Affordability. Reliability. Insurability. Flyability. And the world's largest service organization. All of which have helped make Cessna the No. 1 selling line of new single-engine
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Alphabet groups and two industry leaders declared war against the Air Transport Association (ATA), which represents
most U.S. Airlines, in the latest chapter in GA's effort to prevent the imposition of user fees on general aviation. EAA President Tom Poberezny spoke yesterday to a large audience at AirVenture,
declared the airlines as the "enemy" and referred to the gathering of GA leaders at Tuesday's forum as "the opening salvo in the united front" against the FAA's apparent determination to impose
fee-for-service charges for a variety of aviation services. Earlier this year the ATA issued a news release recommending that GA operators (defined by the FAA as anything but scheduled and military
flights) pay for the actual services they use, rather than have their contribution collected from fuel taxes. However, the ATA also seemed to suggest that those flying piston aircraft be exempt from
the charges. Regardless, general aviation groups have composed a unified position document, demonstrating
solidarity and arguments for their cause.
At the Tuesday forum, AOPA President Phil Boyer said his group, which represents more than 400,000 pilots, will be
lending its considerable political clout to the effort, even though he's been told it's not his fight. He said that at debate between himself and Airline Transport Association President Jim May. May
said piston-powered aircraft would be exempt from the user fees (which in speculated form hit a mark closer to business jets) and the vast majority of AOPA members unaffected. Boyer said he didn't
take the bait and AOPA will continue to fight fees that, at least for now, shouldn't affect most pilots, but would be a firm step in an unwelcome direction. Boyer went through a long list of fees
imposed on pilots in other countries and said it's sucking the life out of general aviation. Until recently, the fees have been prevalent in far-away places like Europe and New Zealand but a
development in Canada has brought the issue closer to home. Until last week, GA operators in Canada have been required to pay a flat $72 annual fee to gain access to all services provided by the
non-profit private aviation services provider, Nav Canada. Last week, the Canadian Transportation Agency upheld Nav Canada's request to impose daily user fees on GA aircraft landing at Canada's seven
largest airports. Boyer said the Canadian experience proves that once user fee systems are in place, they eventually trickle down to general aviation.
Through the current system of fuel taxes, GA contributes about $500 million to the FAA. The ATA is looking for
about $2 billion in relief with its proposal. If only turbine-powered, non-scheduled aircraft are left footing that bill, it means business jet owners could be faced with up to $100,000 in extra fees
each year, according to the math done by the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA). "This is a very serious, very immediate threat," said NBAA President Ed Bolen. Cirrus Design CEO Alan
Klapmeier said user fees would "be a disaster for GA) because, as pilots dropped out of the system because of cost, costs would escalate for those who remain. "This is a bad deal," he said. Cessna CEO
Jack Pelton noted that GA could end up paying for the more than $1 billion in renovations required at major airports to accommodate the Airbus A380 and the 555 passengers it will carry.
All the speakers said the user fee proposal is a cynical attempt by the airlines to dump costs on general aviation and gain control of the airspace system. "All the airlines want to do is pay less and
control more," said General Aviation Manufacturers Association President Pete Bunce. "User fees are bad business and airlines drive the cost of the system." He noted that the FAA hasn't saved any
money since GA was virtually banned from Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. so the "blip is a blip" analogy that the ATA is promoting doesn't add up. The ATA contends that only two-thirds of
air traffic is airline-related but 90 percent of the cost is assessed to airlines. The forum speakers agreed that if GA disappeared, the costs of handling the remaining airline traffic wouldn't
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The HondaJet's flight toward certification has begun, an
enthusiastic Michimasa Fujino told a crowd of reporters yesterday morning at EAA AirVenture. Under dazzling lights that bathed the jet in a brilliant glow, Fujino, who designed the airplane and has
shepherded its creation, announced that Honda is now committed to take the jet to the marketplace. Honda will form a new company based in the United States to see the project through to certification
and production. But they won't go it alone -- Honda is teaming up with Piper Aircraft to provide a global sales and service network. Certification is expected in three to four years. Honda will start
taking orders later this year. The enthusiastic reception for the HondaJet at AirVenture 2005 was a major factor leading to this year's announcement, said Jeffrey Smith, Honda spokesman. "The warm
reception and enthusiasm for the jet were overwhelming and encouraging," he said.
The seven-seat jet has reached 43,000 feet and 412 knots so far in 240 hours of flight testing, and is
expected to have a range of over 1,000 nautical miles, according to Honda's preliminary figures. Final specifications, as well as a price point, will be forthcoming later this year. The two GE-Honda
HF118 turbofan engines are mounted on pylons extending vertically from the inboard section of the wings. The company says the result is better outside and inside for aerodynamics and ergonomics,
respectively. The jet's distinctive features, which include a "natural laminar-flow" wing and nose, "help it achieve far better fuel efficiency, larger cabin and luggage space and higher cruise speed
than conventional aircraft in its class," according to the company's news release. Fujino made clear that Honda intends
to find its place among the growing choices in the small-jet field. "We emphasize three key attributes -- performance, quality, and price," that will resonate with buyers, he said. To see how that
translates, stay tuned.
Piper Aircraft President James Bass said the new arrangement signals the launch of "a significant and
meaningful relationship" between the two companies. The synergy will extend through sales and service to engineering collaborations and beyond, he said. No merger or takeover is in the works, however,
and Bass said the arrangement won't affect Piper's plans to develop a jet of its own. There is plenty of room in the market for a Piper jet that wouldn't be going to head to head with Honda, he said.
Does that mean Piper would offer a smaller, more personal-size jet? "You could make that assumption," Bass said. He added that Piper will have more to say about plans for their own product line by
this fall at the NBAA convention. This morning's HondaJet news conference was broadcast over the Internet, and can still be seen online.
A quick, free registration is required to access the video.
Oregon Aero Fixes What Hurts at Oshkosh 2006 Oregon Aero, Inc. has built its business upon refusing to accept that common discomforts in the cockpit and on the ground are unavoidable. If you experience headaches from your headset or
helmet, backaches from your seat, or aching feet and joints from walking the AirVenture grounds, come to Building C. Oregon Aero has a variety of solutions to fix what hurts. Learn how Oregon
Aero solves the problem of pain online.
Visit Oregon Aero at EAA AirVenture Booths #3137-3141
"It will set new standards in performance, comfort and safety, and will be backed by Cessna's worldwide sales,
distribution, training and service infrastructure," said Cessna CEO and president, Jack Pelton of the company's "Next Generation Piston Aircraft" (NGP). The design's surprise appearance came during
Monday's unveiling of Cessna's concept LSA (which was expected). The un-announced arrival of Cessna's NGP, however, simply dropped jaws. A close
look shows fixed tricycle gear, a cantilever forward-swept wing, front and back access doors plus a baggage door, and subtle compound curves. With the introduction of two brand new aircraft
designs -- the proof-of-concept LSA, and the forward-swept wing five-place(?) piston-single -- Cessna has re-entered the race and put its money where its mouth is. Gaping jaws and visible goose bumps
(in the balmy mid-western heat) were a dime a dozen during the aircraft's three circuits, but hard numbers are still to come. Cessna says the aircraft, flying out of the company's Wichita facilities,
has since June 23 accumulated more than 20 hours in its development program.
The proposed Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) made its debut at AirVenture Oshkosh Monday to an eager sun-drenched
crowd. LSA's are defined by a maximum gross weight of 1,320 pounds, maximum level-flight speed of 120 knots, and no more than two seats ... so that much was no surprise. Cessna's uncommitted proof-of-concept (click for images) offering features a strutted high wing spanning 30 feet and side-by-side seating in a cabin with a maximum
width of 48 inches (hop into your local Cessna 152 and add six inches). The cockpit is accessed via upward opening doors and sports large windows and dual control sticks. Targeting pleasure flyers and
new pilots the aircraft sits on tricycle gear, steers (while on the ground) via toe brakes (plus a castering nose wheel), and is pulled aloft by a 100-hp Rotax 912 engine. Construction is mostly
aluminum, with selective use of composites for the cowl, wing and dorsal fin. Cessna chairman, president and CEO, Jack Pelton, said first flight of the aircraft is planned for later this year. Cessna
says reaction to the aircraft will help determine whether the company will enter into the budding LSA sector.
Avidyne TAS600 Because Two Antennas Are Better than One!
Whether you're flying in a busy terminal area, navigating a long cross-country, or hovering over a city, seeing and avoiding traffic requires having the right information in real time.
Avidyne's TAS600 Traffic Advisory Systems, with dual-antenna technology, provides significantly improved signal coverage and target tracking, enabling faster updates and enhanced performance
over single-antenna systems, for maximum safety. Starting at $9,990, Avidyne's TAS600 Series makes premium performance, active-surveillance traffic alerting affordable for virtually every
general aviation aircraft. Visit Avidyne at AirVenture or online.
Aircraft Engine Services, which hopes to begin selling the REV 220 and REV 300 V-6 aircraft
engines next year, says the mills will tolerate a nip of ethanol. AES head Luc de Gaspe Beaubien said the engines, which are finishing certification testing at their manufacturer, Rotax, in Austria,
will be certified to burn automotive gasoline with 10 percent ethanol content (matching current trends). There are currently no aviation engines permitted to use ethanol/blended gasoline. De Gaspe
Beaubien also told a press conference that the engines are performing well and he expects 2007 to be the watershed year for them. De Gaspe Beaubien remains tight lipped about the aircraft manufacturer
he says will be the launch customer for the high -revving (6,000 rpm at max power) engines. Introduced in 2003, the engines, which were originally planned to be part of the Rotax line, are
FADEC-controlled and will be shipped with dual alternators and a two-stage air conditioning compressor. Rotax will make the engines but they will be sold through AES. They'll weigh about 570 lbs, a
little less than the 300 horsepower TIO-540 made by Lycoming. De Gaspe Beaubien said they'll have 2,000-hour TBO and offer turbine-like operation and smoothness.
Point2Point Airways, a next-generation air-taxi/charter company based in
North Dakota, announced yesterday at Oshkosh that they've placed an order for up to 100 airplanes from Diamond Aircraft. "We aim to be the world's
first personal airline," said Point2Point CEO John Boehle. Diamond will deliver 10 of its DA42 TwinStars starting next month. Boehle also holds delivery options for the D-Jet, due to make its public
debut here at AirVenture later today. The TwinStar is the right size and has the right capabilities to meet the growing needs of his company, Boehle said. It can carry a pilot and up to three
passengers at 200 mph with a range of up to 1,300 miles. The TwinStar also is certified to fly into known icing conditions, said Diamond President Peter Maurer, which is vital for reliable all-weather
dispatch. The D-Jet can carry a pilot and up to four passengers, with a cruise speed of 362 mph and a range of 1,553 statute miles at an altitude of up to 25,000 feet. The prototype will visit briefly
today, but a full-size mockup is on display all week at the Diamond exhibit. The interior, with two seats up front and a double bench seat in back, feels roomier than it looks, and the co-pilot seat
will be able to swivel around for "club seating." Point2Point's order represents the first sale of Diamond's DA42 Twin Star and D-Jet to a U.S. commercial air carrier.
New Garmin GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and Built-in StreetPilot (Auto) JA AIR CENTER has the new GPSMap 496 in-stock for purchase at our EAA AirVenture Booth, #2088-2089 (Oshkosh, WI). Call (800) 323-5966, or order online. Update your Garmin portable GPS or sell your used GPS at our booth. Flying to the show?
PITSTOP for fuel at our Dekalb Taylor Municipal Airport (KDKB) FBO location in Dekalb, IL (123 nm to OSH).
Find the new Garmin GPSMap 496 at JA Air Center, EAA AirVenture Booths #2088-2089
Although the Cirrus SR22 is no slouch in the cruise speed arena, it still trails Columbia's 400 by 40 knots or so,
especially when the Columbia hits the high teens. The Cirrus answer to this appeared at OSH in the form the new SR22-GTS Turbo, which promises to deliver 200-knot cruise speed in the low flight
levels. Cirrus expects the turbo SR22 to be available sometime this fall, for an add on price of $59,800, bringing the total price for a typically equipped new SR22 to $509,795 -- a price that
includes a new lighter Hartzell composite prop. But that's not the only new twist. What's interesting about this project is that the engineering was done by an outside vendor, not Teledyne
Continental, which supplies the airplane's IO-550-N engine. Tornado Alley Turbo -- well known for its Bonanza and Cessna aftermarket turbos -- was already developing a turbonormalizer setup for the
SR22 so Cirrus decided to offer that to its customers rather than a factory TC option. This isn't the first time an OEM has retained an outside vendor for a turbo setup, but it's certainly one of the
most high profile.
Kollsman Commercial Aviation Systems arrived at Oshkosh with a forward-looking infra red (FLIR) camera poking out
the top of a C-Model Mooney. The GAViS (General Aviation Vision System) lets pilots see through haze, smoke, light fog, mist, and night by seeing differential heat. This is a simpler version of their
million-dollar, enhanced-vision system used on Gulfstream jets. "The main thing is night ops, night VFR ops," said Exec Vice President Randy Moore. At $69,375 -- and that's the show special -- you'll
pay a lot for that safety. Forward Vision just announced that the next 100 customers for its FLIR can get the entire system for $9995, and with extra features.
Forward Vision's FLIR uses a different technology that Kollsman (a BST sensor vs. a microbolometer for the techno-geeks out there), which makes it immune to solar damage and doesn't flicker as the
Kollsman image does. Forward Vision also comes with a two-hour emergency power supply that could give you a visible horizon at night after a total power failure and input to put GPS-driven track and
airspeed on the FLIR display. Both systems require 337 forms to install, but Kollsman has a clever antenna mount system that should make this a simpler process. Kollsman has 200 orders already for
their system, which ships next year. The Forward Vision system is available today.
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Ever wonder where the EAA gets pictures of all those pretty airplanes for their calendars and magazines? Well, if you come to
Airventure with a showpiece, you might find out. David Hipschman, the new editor of Sport Aviation, has the pleasure of walking around the show and leaving notes for airplane owners saying the
EAA would like to photograph their airplane. The note invites the owner to a briefing where they learn how to fly in formation with an EAA photo plane. The briefing starts at 9:00 am where the pilots
are shown each of the standard positions they'll have to fly -- in trail, low right, "plan-view" -- and how communications will work in the air. Subject planes then take off late in the day and fly to
Wautoma Municipal (Y50) where the ground photos are taken. Then each subject meets up in the air with the photo ship for 45 minutes of formation flying. Depending on the light and the clouds, the
flight could be 500 feet over the lake or at 10,000 feet above the clouds. To hear what it sounds like at that briefing and during formation flight, listen to our podcast later this week.
Barely a year after its official introduction, Diamond's DA42 diesel TwinStar is making a name for itself
as a mega long distance flyer. Two were flown into AirVenture, from Germany, one across and the Atlantic and, get this, the other eastbound across the Pacific. We'll have an interview with the three
Swedish pilots who navigated their TwinStar around the world as part of tommorow's podcast.
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Visit LightSPEED Aviation at EAA AirVenture Booths #2019 & 2022-2023
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 part.
Find all of today's stories in AVweb's: NewsWire
Aircraft Spruce Canada to Open in Toronto
Aircraft Spruce & Specialty Co., the world's largest supplier of experimental and certificated aircraft parts, has announced the opening of
Aircraft Spruce Canada. Scheduled to open in Toronto early-September, Aircraft Spruce Canada will provide aircraft builders and owners throughout Canada with the full range of Aircraft Spruce
products at competitive prices and shipping rates. Orders placed with Aircraft Spruce Canada will be shipped via UPS, FedEx, or postal service to Canadian customers, and a retail store will be open
at the Toronto facility in early Fall 2006. Contact Aircraft Spruce Canada at 1-877-4-SPRUCE. Orders can also
be placed online.
Visit Aircraft Spruce & Specialty at EAA AirVenture Booths #1022-1029
Online Now: Check AVweb's podcast index for special off-day reports you may have missed. And watch for more 'casts this Thursday and
AVweb's podcasts feature exclusive interviews with industry gurus, like: TCM president Bryan Lewis, NATCA president John Carr, New Piper CEO Jim Bass, Hal Shevers for Sporty's Pilot Shop, Light Sport
guru Dan Johnson, Excel Jet's Bob Bornhofen, Adam Aircraft's Joe Walker, FAA administrator Marion Blakey, Cirrus Design's Alan Klapmeier and more. AVweb's Podcast index, is online, now. You'll hear things you won't find anywhere else.
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HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVwebs NO-COST twice monthly Business AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also
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The 2006 New Piper Mirage Offers Serious Sophistication
Avidyne's Flightmax Entegra Integrated Flight Deck is standard equipment on the New Piper Mirage. Three flight displays, moving map, Garmin GNS 430, autopilot, color radar system, and dual Air
Data/Attitude and Heading Reference System (ADAHRS) combine to provide serious sophistication for a higher level of confidence. Click here for complete information on the New Piper Mirage.
Visit the New Piper at EAA AirVenture Booths #72-75 & 79-82
Offering up Ocean Air, Scott Burton told us, "The elegant and relaxing facilities make it worth the stop coupled with the extraordinary service and friendly people. Denise runs that FBO as best as
I have ever seen and always with a smile. Truly one of the best FBOís I have been to and the service is impeccable."
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Lost Your Ride from Oshkosh to Home? Have to Fly Home Sooner than You Planned?
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