Find JA Air Center Find the New Garmin GPSMap 496 JA Air Center, Your Garmin Source, has the new Garmin GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and built-in StreetPilot Automotive GPS in stock for immediate
delivery. Call JA Air Center toll-free at (800) 323-5966, or order online.
If you are looking to sell your current GPS, JA Air Center Purchases Used GPS and Avionics call for current values.
Visit the new GPSMap 496 Blog for more information on this exciting new product from Garmin.
The flying fraternity and sorority in the San Antonio area is collectively shaking its head at what some are describing as a senseless waste of tax dollars with the destruction of 110 piston-single
aircraft. As AVweb told you in its Sept. 15 Audiocast, the T-3 Slingsby Firefly pilot screening aircraft, virtually all of which were in flying condition when they were mothballed nine years ago, were smashed to pieces by heavy equipment
at Hondo Airport last week. According to Air Force spokesman Capt. Gideon McClure, the militarys term for the systematic destruction of the aircraft is "salvage in place." The Air Force paid
more than $32 million for the planes and the best it can hope for from the destruction work is that it wont cost any more.
The planes have been stored under "hail sheds," essentially metal-roofed shelters without walls, at Hondo since they were pulled from service in 1997 for safety reasons. The methods used to reduce
them to rubble were devastatingly simple and completely effective. They were dragged from the sheds on their flat tires and picked up, nose first, by a giant forklift. That part of the process
probably finished them as flying machines. They were then carried to a screened-off area where an excavator smashed them to shards of fiberglass with its steel bucket. At some point in the process,
the coup de grace was administered with a plasma torch that melted and fused the engine block.
It doesnt appear anyone had any hope of the aircraft flying again. They were outfitted to military specifications and the Air Force estimated that converting them to civilian standards and
fixing the effects of nine years of neglect would cost upward of $100,000 per plane. But what local pilots couldnt understand was why the airframes went to the crusher with all their radios,
instruments, wheels, tires, brakes, seats and everything else where Slingsby put them, including the Lycoming AEIO-540 engine. Norris Warner, president of the Southwest Regional Fly-In held annually
at Hondo, said his group tried to recoup some of the value of the aircraft through a salvage proposal.
Their plan was to strip the planes to the airframe and sell off all the salvaged parts. "None of the planes would have moved. We would have done it right where they were," he said. Once all the
engines, avionics and other gear were sold, the group proposed that the proceeds be split between the Fly-In organization, the Air Force and the city of Hondo for airport improvements. The Air Force
rejected the idea, citing liability concerns, but Warner said that as far as he knows there could be no liability transferred to the salvaged parts.
The T-3s were purchased as part of a program to save money on initial flight training by the Air Force. The fully aerobatic,
relatively high-performance aircraft allowed the Air Force to expose flight-training prospects to the twists and turns of military flying at relatively low cost to make sure they could handle the
larger, more powerful primary flight training aircraft. But, according to GlobalSecurity.org, the T-3s
were plagued by an apparent fuel problem that would cause the engine to quit when it was throttled back in flight. It happened 66 times on takeoff or landing. Three instructors and three students were
killed in three crashes that dont appear to be related to the fuel fault. There were also 10 groundings of 57 aircraft for engine and brake problems.
The technical problems appear to have only indirectly led to the demise of the program, however. In 1997, the Air Force grounded the T-3s while it looked for solutions to its problems (it even
considered installing ejection seats). Without the weeding-out process afforded by the T-3 program, the washout rate in primary flight training spiked above 15 percent and the Air Force sought a
temporary solution. It contracted private flight schools to do the screening and found they did at least as good a job of bringing the failure rate down in the more advanced training. The Air Force
has continued with the private-sector screening programs and the T-3s were orphaned. "The Air Force no longer has a mission for these aircraft," said McClure.
Get Our "Best Class" Rates with Only 250 Total Hours
Now, through the Pilot Insurance Center, a private instrument-current pilot with as few as 250 total hours may qualify for our "Best Class" rates. Pilot Insurance Center works
closely with leading insurers to develop life insurance policies specifically designed for pilots. All of our insurance products offer full coverage with no aviation exclusions and are provided by A+
rated (A.M. Best) insurance companies. Compare and Save for a quote, call PIC today at (800) 380-8376 or go
The FAA formally gave its blessing for a new major airport near Panama City on the Florida Panhandle. The agency
issued its Decision of Record accepting the environmental-impact statement and clearing the way for federal funding for the $300 million project. The state has committed $82.5 million to the project
and civic officials are hailing it as a boon to local tourism and development. The current Panama City-Bay County International Airport
is on 715 acres the city says was worth $55 million three years ago. The new airport would be about 30 miles away in West Bay and critics argue that the project has more to do with real estate than it
does with air traffic.
The new airport will be on 4,000 acres donated by the St. Joe Company, a massive land-development company that just happens to own the 78,000 acres of mainly undeveloped land surrounding it.
According to the Business Journal of Jacksonville, "the airport relocation is a necessary condition for the second and third phases of St. Joe's 16,000-acre West Bay project." The first phase included
housing, commercial space and a hotel; the second and third phases add industrial space, more housing, and commercial and tourism development.
Environmental groups are trying to shout down the project, which still has some hoops to go
through. The National Resources Defense Council says that from an aviation standpoint, the airport isnt needed because traffic is dropping at the existing facility. "Given that traffic at the
current airport has dropped dramatically, there's no demand for this new one, which would destroy nearly 2,000 acres of wetlands that protect water quality and provide a buffer against storms," it
said in a statement. The group claims that traffic records for the existing airport show the number of arrivals and departures has dropped from about 50 a day to about 24 a day and that upgrading the
current facility will handle any foreseeable future growth.
Airport proponents say the environmental concerns have been addressed and the new airport will spur commercial, residential and tourism growth in the Panhandle area. "The new airport will give
northwest Florida a tremendous economic development platform and a competitive advantage over many of the regions with which we compete for job creation," said Al Wenstrand, director of Floridas
Great Northwest, an economic-development group representing 16 counties in the area.
Fly with the Bose® Aviation Headset X
Enjoy an unmatched combination of benefits: Full-spectrum noise reduction, clear sound, and comfortable fit. Voted the #1 headset for the fifth year in a row by readers of Professional Pilot
magazine. (Headset Preference Survey, 12/05.) Learn more and order.
EAA and its Warbirds of America division are working with the FAA to ensure the regulatory environment allows
historic aircraft to keep flying long into the future. The FAA has come up with what it calls its Road Map to keep warbirds and other vintage aircraft in the air. During EAA AirVenture, EAA officials
met with the FAA to discuss the document and make recommendations. "During the weeks immediately following EAA AirVenture 2006, EAA's Industry and Regulatory Affairs Department and the Warbirds of
America's Advocacy Committee thoroughly reviewed the draft and made numerous recommendations to enhance the document," EAA said in a news release. Earl Lawrence, EAAs regulatory expert, told
AVweb much of the focus is not on the aircraft themselves but on the people needed to fly and fix them.
As the aircraft themselves become rarer, along with the pilots and technicians who keep them flying, a special set of rules needs to be developed to ensure that new personnel can be trained to fill
those roles. Lawrence says that may mean modifying rules on type ratings to allow people with experience in similar types of aircraft to be allowed to fly them. He said its not often practical
to get checked out on certain aircraft but the pool of people who have parallel experience can apply their knowledge. "EAA and the Warbirds of America seek to make the final FAA Road Map document an
effective preservation blueprint for the aviation community," Lawrence said.
What adjective do you use to describe a jumbo jet thats been given a plus-size makeover? While the spinmasters
come up with one, Boeing is celebrating the arrival of the first of its Boeing 747 Large Cargo Freighters at Boeing Field in Seattle. The plane, which is modified with an outsized fuselage and a
hinged empennage, is one of three that will be used to carry wing and fuselage parts for the new 787 from offshore contractors. The arrival of the plane, which was on its first long-distance flight
(from Taipei), was symbolic for those on the 787 program. "These planes will be a cornerstone," Scott Strode, whos in charge of the 787 program, told the Bellingham Herald. "It's one of our most
visible milestones this year for the 787 because we have to have it certified and ready to ship hardware by early next year."
Rather than build the freighters, Boeing bought three used 747-400s and had them modified by Evergreen Aviation Technologies Group in Taiwan. The aircraft use the same engines and many other
components but theres not much resemblance to the passenger planes from which they are derived. For one thing, only the flight deck, with room for three pilots (theres usually a relief
pilot on long-haul flights) is pressurized. The cavernous hold is 26 feet high and the huge tail swings open for loading. Joe MacDonald, Boeings chief 747 pilot, was the captain on the flight
and said it was like any other trip. "When you're sitting in the pilot seat, you can't tell the difference between this and any other 747," he told the Herald.
AOPA President Phil Boyer says there's not much room for general aviation in NASA's and the FAA's
vision of future air travel. The so-called Next Generation Air Transportation System is geared toward commercial carriers and heaps expense on GA while diminishing its access. "But in this nightmare
of the future, GA would lose access to airspace, experience increased security requirements, and operate from fewer airports," said Boyer, "even if we equipped with all the expensive
technologies envisioned." There are some major shifts in the way airspace management would work under the plan [1.3 meg PDF file] but it's the expense that small aircraft owners would incur thats got AOPA particularly riled.
Under the plan, all aircraft, including VFR-only planes, would have to be equipped to supply the "four dimensional trajectory (4DT) management" system with continuously updated position and flight
plan information to take part in the system. All flights would have to have a flight plan. Planes without the gear would be restricted to what AOPA describes as "shrinking areas of 'classic
airspace.'" Computer-controlled "virtual towers" would direct traffic at many GA airports and require sophisticated electronics to permit their use. Boyer says hell continue to fight for
modernization "to serve the needs of all users, not just the airlines."
Subscribe to Trade-A-Plane & See Why 96% of Trade-A-Plane Subscribers choose Trade-A-Plane as their primary aviation shopping tool.
Thousands of classifieds (updated daily), product and advertiser indices, NAAA Evaluator, and aviation weather Trade-A-Plane is everything that keeps you flying! To order, call
(800) 337-5263 or go online.
Cessna and its parent company Textron dedicated a new parts factory in Chihuahua, Mexico, last week that officials from both
companies seem to think is the shape of things to come. "We believe the Textron Aerospace Mexico facility is a positive step toward expanding Cessna's global presence as we continue to ensure Cessna
products remain competitive in the world-wide aerospace market," Cessna Senior Vice President of Integrated Supply Chain Ron Alberti told Jobwerx.com. The Mexico plant makes wiring harnesses for
Cessna jets and employs 138 people in a 62,000-square-foot facility. Meanwhile, back in Wichita, aircraft parts suppliers gathered to look at the future of their business.
The forum, sponsored by Cessna, drew suppliers from all over the U.S. and focused on strategies small-to-medium-sized firms can use to serve the large manufacturers. One trend is for manufacturers
to subcontract entire assemblies, not just the parts needed to make them. Thats forced the suppliers to act more like the manufacturers in terms of supply chain management. "I cannot afford
disruptions in my flow," B.J. Schramm, of Hitco Carbon Composites, in Gardena, Calif., told the forum.
After theyve beaten the explosives detectors, scammed the baggage scanners, avoided the
ever-vigilant scrutiny of security screeners and knocked down the bulletproof door to the cockpit, terrorists of the future might face an even more daunting adversary -- the plane itself. European
scientists began working on a $35 million project in July to see if they cant make the last line of defense against airborne terror the aircraft. "You never reach zero level of threat, no risk,
but if you equip planes with on-board electronics, it will make them very difficult to hijack," Daniel Gaultier, coordinator of the Security of Aircraft in the Future European Environment (SAFEE)
project, told the Evening Standard.
The project, which is being funded by several European countries, aims to give aircraft the smarts to thwart a would-be hijacker by, for instance, refusing to fly into a large building.
Sophisticated biometrics appear to be the heart of the system and would be able to spot terrorists before they act, detect whether a pilot was "under duress" while opening the cockpit door and ensure
that everyone on board is who they say they are.
Aircraft Investor Resources, of Bend, Ore., says it will begin certification tests on the Dynasty, a certified version of its Epic
LT turboprop single, this fall in Calgary, Alberta. Assuming all goes well with the turboprop, the company says it will then start work on certifying a twin-engine jet called the Elite. The company
turned heads at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh a few years ago with the turboprop, which it took from a paper airplane to first flight in less than a year. It was selling a builder-assisted kit version of
the plane but was attracted to Canada to certify it by the more streamlined process north of the border, according to CEO Rick Schrameck. "The Canadians have been wonderful to work with," Schrameck
said in a news release.
The Dynasty will be the first plane to be developed by the Canadian Centre for Aerospace Development (CCAD) at Calgary and Medicine Hat, Alberta. The new center specializes in testing composite
aircraft construction. The plane will be certified under a new program specifically designed by Transport Canada for general aviation aircraft and is expected to be certified in 2008. The turboprop
will cruise at about 340 KTAS at 28,000 feet with a range of 1560 nm.
Don't Fly "Coach" in Your Own Plane Upgrade to a First-Class Seat
You can fly pain-free when you upgrade your aircraft seat with an Oregon Aero® Seat Cushion System. Oregon Aero makes Painless, Safer Seat Cushion Systems for every
type of aircraft that are highly regarded by military and general aviation pilots. Oregon Aero® Seat Cushion Systems shift your hips and pelvis to the correct position, and the
visco-elastic foam molds to your body to ensure a first-class seating experience. To find out which Seat Cushion System is right for your aircraft, visit Oregon Aero® Seat Cushion Systems.
An unidentified pilot suffered serious injuries after he was hit by the main wheels of the airplane he commanded and was then dragged across the ramp at Gatwick Airport. The freak accident happened
last March but a report on the mishap was just released by Britains Air Accidents Investigations Branch. The pilot and co-pilot were getting ready to take the Lear 45 to Paris when the co-pilot
accidentally moved a thrust lever forward.
The pilot, who was stowing his baggage in the rear, noticed the change in pitch in the engine and rushed forward to warn the co-pilot. Along the way, he somehow lost his footing and fell out the
open door. The plane, with the pilot in tow, hit a ground worker and a vehicle before spinning 180 degrees and coming to rest against a large truck.
There were no passengers on board. There was no word on the fate of the ground worker, the two vehicles involved or the aircraft.
A man who allegedly led police on a high-speed chase on a runway at South Florida International Airport could face up to 20 years in jail. Jack Brems has been indicted on charges of Using A
Device To Disrupt Service after an Aug. 8 incident in which a vehicle was chased by police around the airport, ducking under aircraft, including one taking off
Canadian flight schools are reaping the benefits of a worldwide shortage of pilots. Schools are reporting a surge in foreign enrolment, particularly from Asia, as students take advantage of
the relatively low cost of training and the wide acceptance of Canadian credentials
Two companies are teaming up to offer a replacement aircraft for the Canadian Armed Forces Snowbirds. The nine-plane team now flies 40-year-old CT-114 Tutor aircraft, and Venga Aerospace and ARINC Inc. are pitching the Canadian government a plan to replace them with
British-built Hawk aircraft
When it rains, it pours -- inside the Atlanta air route traffic control center -- and controllers would like the roof fixed. According to a letter to FAA officials, some staff worked traffic
under umbrellas during a recent storm.
Columbia Simplifies Buying & Selling All Aircraft Brands
Selling an aircraft can be a challenging odyssey. Aircraft owners need to: locate a broker with national resources to sell for top dollar; select and utilize the most effective advertising; access
no-cost, no-obligation finance pre-qualification; consult aviation tax experts; and obtain insurance quotes with higher liability limits. Columbia Aircraft has created a tool to assist pilots
and aircraft owners of all brands. Check out their web site.
For many aviation buffs, there's nothing like the sound of four big radial engines on a B-17 or the sight of a Mustang in flight
to stir the soul. There are hundreds of warbirds still flying, but the supply of qualified personnel to fly and fix them will run thin if something isn't done to ensure those skills are passed on.
AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with EAA's Earl Lawrence about a program that addresses that issue, in today's Audio News podcast.
For more exclusive AVweb audio content, visit our podcast index page. (No iPod or special equipment required to listen.)
Flight Explorer Pilot Edition® Could Save You Time When Flight Planning
Whether you want to view the weather along your planned route of flight, receive alerts when the FAA sends your preliminary flight plan, or need to have an e-mail automatically sent to someone when
you depart or arrive, Flight Explorer Pilot Edition® is for you. Click here for more information and to
We've heard good things about this FBO before, but AVweb reader
John D. Light thought the entire staff deserved kudos for the
service and facilities.
"Senior CFIs Dale Stewart and Jamey Gauthier are two of
the best anywhere in the world," writes John. "The entire A&P
force, led by Ben Mosier, are always ready, willing and able to
do whatever is required to keep you flying, and the front desk man,
Chris Parker, is the best front desk man to be found anywhere. Owner
Nate Humphries runs a very fine FBO that is certainly deserving
of all the recognition it gets."
AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!
If You Think "Bargains" Are Something Alien to Aviation Think Again!
Spending hard-earned money on your aircraft and its avionics can be expensive. But don't think good deals aren't available in today's marketplace. Bennett Avionics provides pilots with
quality avionics to meet their needs and maintain their budget. Before you buy anywhere else, check out Bennett Avionics at (860) 653-7295 or online. You'll be glad you did!
Probable Cause #15: IFR & Meds A Deadly Mix by Brian M. Jacobson
A pilot loses control while executing a missed approach. The NTSB believes that cold or allergy medication played a role in the accident. This accident report first appeared in AVweb's sister
publication, IFR Refresher.
What's New for September
This month AVweb's survey of the latest products and services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft owners brings you amphib floats for Glasairs, tour of the Bahamas, training DVDs and more.
Join NAA and Help Shape the Next Century of Flight
It's a great time to join the National Aeronautic Association (NAA), the nation's oldest aviation organization. At $39 a year, NAA membership is a terrific value for any aviation
enthusiast! Members receive the Smithsonian's Air & Space and NAA's Aero magazines, plus access to aviation records, product discounts, and much more. Call (703) 527-0226 to
become an NAA member, or sign up online.
A big thanks to everyone who took a few minutes last week to share their favorite flying videos with us. We didn't get much work done on Monday or Tuesday, but we did enjoy your videos so
please keep 'em coming!
This week's "VOTW" is a little longer and more laid-back, but well worth a watch. It was originally posted on YouTube by richardr2000:
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST twice-monthly AVwebBiz newsletter? Reporting on breaking news, AVwebBiz also focuses
on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the Business of Aviation. AVwebBiz is a must-read. Watch for a Biz regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA IN THE
"SPOTLIGHT". Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/
AVWEB APPRECIATES YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT OF OUR SPONSORS,
WHO BRING YOU TODAY'S NEWS AND FEATURES AT NO COST TO YOU
Use the Best ASA's 2007 FAR/AIMs and FAA Exam Prep Now Available ASA's 2007 FAR/AIMs, Test Preps for pilots, and Fast-Track Test Guides for AMTs are now available. Prepware combines all the information in the Test Prep and Fast-Track Test Guide series in
computer-based training. Contains all FAA Knowledge Exam questions. Virtual Test Prep lets students study from their TVs or computer DVD players. For complete details about these products, visit ASA's web site.
Power Flow Is Now FAA-Approved for the Diamond DA40
The Power Flow Tuned Exhaust System is now standard equipment on all 2007 Diamond DA40 aircraft. Benefits include: Speed increases of up to 8 knots; 15% more climb; or, go the same speeds and
save up to 1.2 gallons per hour. Starting in October, existing DA40 owners can retrofit their aircraft. For complete
details, go online!
Gas Prices Keeping You Grounded? Share Expenses on Your Next Flight!
Join PilotShareTheRide.com. This unique site is offered at no cost to pilots AND those who love to fly and don't have access to an aircraft. You can share costs on your next flight! Pilot
Share The Ride is supported by advertisers, just like AVweb, so there are no membership costs. Check out PilotShareTheRide.com.
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
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.