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AirVenture Booths #3137-3141
PROMISES -- AND DELIVERS -- CHANGES For pilots discouraged by
their encounters with government beauracracy, FAA Administrator Marion
Blakey on Wednesday brought a morsel (or two) of hope. The agency has
cut the time it takes to process special-issuance medical certificates
from several months to an average of 16 days. Investments in new
technology have paid off in making such change possible, she said.
Further, many pilots will soon be able to cut back on the number of
times they must visit an FAA medical examiner for a certificate renewal.
The FAA plans to issue a proposed rule that would reduce the frequency
of renewals from 6 months to 1 year for first-class certificate holders,
and from 2 years to 5 years for pilots under age 40 who have third-class
IN FUNDING ARE COMING Blakey said she's determined to change
the way the FAA is funded once the current structure expires in 2007.
However, she expects that a contribution from the General Fund and
continued oversight by Congress will be part of any new plan. She also
tried to reassure the crowd that whatever plans and proposals eventually
emerge, "We do not want to in any way stifle the general aviation
community." The current airspace system needs an overhaul, she said,
because it's simply not capable of handling the projected increase in
airplanes and traffic. "We have to transform the system," she said, with
new technology and efficient infrastructure, to ensure that it will
continue to be safe and meet the needs of all users. More...
AHEAD FOR HOMEBUILT AND AGE-60 RULES? In response to a
question from the audience, Blakey said that a newly established
Aviation Rulemaking Committee will soon begin a review of the rules that
govern homebuilders. She said "commercial entities" have made use of the
51 percent rule in ways in which it was never intended. The homebuilt
category is meant to allow hobbyists to build their own airplanes, but
its application to ever-more-sophisticated aircraft has raised concern.
Also, when an audience member asked for clarification of the agency's
position on the contentious Age-60 rule, she seemed to soften a bit from
the agency's long-held "neutral" stand. More...
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RECEIVES PROVISIONAL CERTIFICATE With balloons, banners, and
crowds of special guests, Eclipse Aviation hosted a big celebration
yesterday at their pavilion just off Aeroshell Square. Just seven years
after announcing a radical plan to build a small jet unlike anything
else then on the market, Eclipse CEO Vern Raburn took possession of an
official Type Certificate from the FAA. Eclipse flew in 170 of its
workers for the event, and dozens of them, wearing white T-shirts
labeled "We Did It," looked on and cheered as Raburn accepted the
certificate from Acting Secretary of Transportation Maria Cino. The
certificate is provisional, and won't allow the company to start
customer deliveries yet. They can, however, start to train pilots in the
jet. "Today's announcement is significant because it means we anticipate
no further major hurdles in the process to award full Type Certification
to the Eclipse 500," FAA Administrator Marion Blakey said in a news
NETWORK TO EXPAND Eclipse also announced plans yesterday for
the further development of its service and support network. In addition
to previously announced Factory Service Centers now in the works for
Albuquerque, N.M., Gainesville, Fla., and Albany, N.Y., four additional
sites will open by the end of this year. The goal is that by 2008, an
Eclipse Service Center will be within a 60-minute flight of virtually
all customers in the lower 48 states. "Eclipse is dedicated to expanding
access to private jet travel throughout the nation, particularly in
areas that are currently under-served by commercial airlines," Raburn
NOISE FOR NEIGHBORLY RELATIONS Eclipse also said yesterday
that noise tests have shown the Eclipse 500 to be quieter than any other
jet aircraft as well as virtually all multi-engine turboprop and piston
airplanes. Since the 500 is designed to land at small GA airports, quiet
operation is an important part of ensuring public acceptance of the
added traffic of some 2,500 Eclipse jets due to enter the airspace
system. "We set out to provide our customers and the aviation
communities they frequent with an aircraft that produces exceptionally
low noise on takeoff, in the air and on landing," said Raburn, "This is
a very, very community-friendly airplane." More...
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
OPTIONS FOR CIRRUS CUSTOMERS Although Cirrus has proven to be
the GA success story of the new century, like every other airplane
manufacturer, it still works hard to find to more buyers. As we reported
in Thursday's AVweb podcast, Cirrus is now offering the option for
buyers of its new airplanes to hire a professional pilot and flight
instructor for a year -- to live near the buyer -- so the new owner can
learn the ropes at his or her own pace and schedule, and if he or she
feels like it, train the rest of the family, too. But that's only one of
a broad palette of initiatives Cirrus announced at this week's
AirVenture show designed to make getting into one of their airplanes
safer and more affordable. More...
NEXT SMALL JET WILL BE SMALLER Alan Klapmeier, CEO of Cirrus
Design, gave reporters at Oshkosh a brief update on the future Cirrus
Jet... "I have no pictures, no specifications, no price, and no dates to
announce," he said. Such details will be forthcoming at a later date.
But he did confirm that a jet is in the company's future. It would be "a
logical step-up path for Cirrus owners," he said. He aims for it to be
the lowest, slowest, and shortest-range aircraft in the small-jet field.
"It will be a personal jet," he said, "not a VLJ." The candid nature of
Klapmeier's comments may imply to some that the jet's cost will also be
correspondingly curtailed, but ... see above. Of the details offered: it
will have a single engine, and a parachute will definitely be part of
the package, he said. More...
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 aircraft. Explore more reasons
Visit Cessna Aircraft at
EAA AirVenture Booths #143-156
CRASH, WHAT'S NEXT FOR SPECTRUM Spectrum's principals and
associated manufacturer Rocky Mountain met Wednesday to discuss future
plans, including certification of the Spectrum 33 light jet and matters
far more personal. The light jet and its test crew were lost Tuesday at
about 4 p.m. in a crash at Spanish Fork-Springville airport. It's been
just four months since Linden Blue, veteran pilot, founder and managing
director of Spectrum Aeronautical, LLC, had his dreams take flight
aboard a carbon fiber 10-seater design-prototype ultimately aiming for a
performance goal 415-knot cruise at 45,000 feet and 2,000 nautical
range. It's been some forty flights since the jet's first.
ELITE, AOPA TEAM UP TO MENTOR NEW PILOTS Yesterday at
Oshkosh, AirShares Elite said it will donate $100,000 worth of free
flight time to help encourage AOPA's latest effort to recruit new
pilots. In the few weeks since AOPA launched its revitalized Project
Pilot at its annual Open House in Maryland, nearly 1,000 AOPA members
have already signed up to be mentors and recruit new flyers. "When I
learned that the pilot population had declined by 25 percent over the
past 25 years, I knew that we had to inspire more people to move from
being wannabe pilots to gottabe pilots," said AirShares Elite CEO David
Lee. Lee said he hopes that introducing interested newcomers to flight
in a Cirrus will help to convince them of the benefits of GA flying.
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.
MAKES A QUICK STOP AND GO Diamond's newest project, the
single-engine D-Jet prototype, made its world debut at AirVenture on
Wednesday morning. The jet rolled in to a welcome from officials from
EAA and the FAA, then was displayed at Aeroshell Square before flying
back home to Canada mid-afternoon to get back to work. Diamond CEO
Christian Dries said the five-place jet is "extremely comfortable" to
fly in, and so far has logged about 30 hours aloft. Labeling it as a
"personal jet," Dries said its target market is the 500 to 700 hour
owner-pilot. With that in mind, the aircraft is designed to be safe and
easy to fly. More...
THIN (ALMOST) AND SUNLIGHT READABLE Makers of electronic
flight bags and cockpit computers have struggled with making the things
readable in direct sunlight and no one has really figured out an elegant
way to display approach plates. But at AirVenture 2006, we saw an
intriguing gadget that appears to have broken the code. The eFLYBook
from Arinc was described by a company representative as "electronic
paper." And it is, too. It's an impressively thin tablet computer (Linux
based) about the size of a standard approach plate. Rather than a
backlit LCD display, the eFLYBook uses proprietary technology from iREX
that works sort of like a high-tech Etch-a-Sketch, requiring only tiny
amounts of power and displays in a black and white (ish) format.
Buy 2 Cases of Exxon Elite in July and Get a
Complimentary $20.00 ExxonMobil Cash Card!
For every two cases of Exxon Aviation Oil Elite 20W-50 you
purchase between July 1 and July 31, ExxonMobil will give you a Cash
Card worth $20.00. Purchase Exxon Elite online at EliteEtc.com or at the ExxonMobil Aviation
Lubricants' exhibit at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh.
SELLS A FAST ONE; HINTS AT FASTEST Mooney Airplane Company
delivered its first Ovation 3 this AirVenture to Andre Kulaga. "I
studied airplanes for the last couple years, and compared the price,
performance, and the quality of the work," said Kulaga, "...and I think
Mooney is the best airplane out there." The Ovation 3 is the
normally-aspirated version of Mooney's twin-turbo Acclaim. There is some
contention as to whether the Acclaim has displaced the Columbia 400 as
the fastest piston single, but, according to Gretchen Jahn, CEO of
Mooney airplane company, that uncertainty won't last long.
OFFERS A VIRTUAL WINDOW With so many Tablet PC and Pocket PC
navigators available, where do you even begin? A good place might be to
leave the regular Oshkosh product hangars and go out to the flymarket
looking for Mercury Computing's VistaNav booth. VistaNav's 3D synthetic
vision recreates the view out the front of the airplane, complete with
terrain, runways, and highway-in-the-sky (HITS) guidance. This actually
isn't new, but newly completed -- in fact, a patent was filed the day of
the announcement -- with three new features that help with approaches,
emergencies, and collision avoidance. As for the unit's price: $4,300.
If you were expecting something higher ... you can always buy more. Of
course, this isn't a certified product. ... It simply appears that it
may be a highly capable, practical and affordable one that would
probably be nice to have. More...
Teledyne-Continental Motors Celebrates 100
Years of Innovation Teledyne-Continental Motors (TCM) is celebrating 100 years
of aviation powerplant innovation this year at AirVenture. Stop by the
TCM Pavilion near the main entrance and help them mark this
milestone. TCM will be holding daily drawings for those who fly
Continental engines, so don't miss out on the fun. Go online for more information.
Motors (TCM) at EAA AirVenture Booths #96-102
The SJ30-2 Is the World's Fastest Light
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. Click here for
WON'T HEAR IT ANYWHERE ELSE Click here to
download. Garmin talks shop about its latest leading-edge glass
and Chelton responds. A Swedish group tells how they took
Diamond's DA42 across the Pacific and will continue around the world.
Cirrus's Alan Klapmeier talks about his company's program that leaves
buyers with a new airplane plus a CFII (for a year). ECI's Ed Salmeron
explains the latest improvements his company's products add to aircraft
engines. And you'll hear exactly how controllers at Oshkosh manage 2500
operations a day, both when things go right and otherwise. Check
AVweb's audio news
index for more... More...
Do You Know Who Aviation Insurance Brokers
The fact is that many private pilots don't understand that brokers do
not represent Avemco. Yet many brokers say they represent the
entire aviation insurance market. Avemco wants to make sure that the
aviation insurance consumer understands that they have a real choice.
Call Avemco now at (888) 241-7891 for fast, accurate
answers about aviation insurance or for an immediate quote. You may be
surprised at what you learn. Online too!
OF THE WEEK: OCEAN AIR AVIATION, NORTH BEND, OR AVweb's "FBO
of the Week" ribbon goes to Ocean Air Aviation, at KOTH, North Bend, OR.
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 FBOs I have been to, and
the service is impeccable." Keep those nominations coming click here to nominate
your favorite FBO and here
for complete contest rules. AVweb is actively seeking out the best
FBOs in the country, and another one, submitted by you, will be
spotlighted here next Monday! More...
DA40 Diamond Star a Fleet
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
YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST twice monthly AVwebBiz?
Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on the
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up today at http://www.avweb.com/registerMore...
It's Not What You Know But Who
You Know That Can Save You Money!
Avionics next to your airframe and engine(s), avionics are the
most expensive items you will purchase for your aircraft. Don't spend
more than you need to! Before you buy anywhere else, call Bennett
Avionics at (860) 653-7295, or visit
Bennett online. You'll be glad you did!
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AirVenture Booth #3064
Need a Ride to Oshkosh? Have an Extra Seat
Flying to Oshkosh? PilotShareTheRide.com is the perfect site to share the ride with
someone in your plane or in theirs. Like AVweb, the site
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