AVwebBiz - Volume 6, Number 36

September 3, 2008

By The AVweb Editorial Staff
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Top News: The Verdict Is In for Lycoming/Interstate back to top 
Sponsor Announcement

Lycoming Appeal Of Crankshaft Case Quashed

The lawyer for a Navasota, Texas-based foundry says the Supreme Court of Texas has upheld a lower court ruling absolving his client of wrongdoing in the manufacture of faulty crankshafts that were installed in Lycoming engines. In 2005, Interstate Southwest won a jury decision that not only found it blameless, but also found Lycoming liable for fraud in the case. Lycoming appealed and the Supreme Court rejected that appeal on Tuesday. "This Supreme Court decision means Interstate Southwest wins and Lycoming loses – it's as simple as that," attorney Marty Rose said in a news release "A jury of 12 people looked at this and said that Lycoming was to blame. This decision affirms that." Lycoming's offices were closed when word of the decision reached AVweb and we were not able to contact the company for comment on Tuesday.

The case goes back to 2003 when a series of crankshaft failures in high-horsepower Lycomings prompted a massive recall. Lycoming sued Interstate, which made the cranks, but the jury found that it was Lycoming's design, particularly the addition of vanadium to the alloy mix, that weakened the cranks. Interstate maintained that the cranks were made to Lycoming specs and Rose says the Supreme Court ruling affirms the part maker "made no mistakes" in the process. Earlier appellate court rulings reduced a $96 million judgment awarded Interstate by the jury to lawyer fees only but also stopped a $186 million counterclaim by Lycoming.

Trade-A-Plane, Aviation's Original Search Engine
Back in 1937, Trade-A-Plane was the original — and only — place to look for parts to repair an airplane. Trade-A-Plane is still the best, with everything that keeps you flying — thousands of planes, products, and services updated hourly. Call Trade-A-Plane at (800) 337-5263 or subscribe online.

In print or online, start your search with the world's largest aviation resource — Trade-A-Plane.
The Next Great Jet Success Story? back to top 

Fuji Joins Mitsubishi Jet Group

After shelving its own Subaru light jet program, Fuji Heavy Industries has decided to take part in the development of Mitsubishi's regional jet, according to the Nikkei business news service in Japan. According to a story on the Thomson Financial wire, Fuji will work on wings and other "major components" of the new jet. According to the story, Mitsubishi is short-staffed in its engineering department and the Fuji engineers will supply the needed expertise.

Fuji makes wing components for Eclipse and is also working on the Hawker Beechcraft 4000. It's been toying with the idea of its own business jet for several years. No specs have been released on what a Subaru jet might be.

Fly With Bose Aviation Headset X®
Enjoy an unmatched combination of full-spectrum noise reduction, clearer audio, and comfortable fit. Voted the #1 headset for the seventh consecutive year in Professional Pilot's 2007 Headset Preference Survey. Also rated "Best ANR Headset: The Aviation Consumer Product of the Year" by Aviation Consumer. Learn more and order.

Quotes reprinted with permission: Professional Pilot, 2007 Headset Preference Survey, 12/07; Aviation Consumer, 8/07.
Goodbye, Sentient; Hello, Sentient and JetDirect back to top 

Sentient Split Complete

The Australian investment company Macquarie Opportunities Partners has finished the acquisition of the jet membership, retail charter and fuel management arms of Sentient Jet Holdings LLC, completing a split of Sentient that was announced two weeks ago. The new company will retain the Sentient brand and will be headed up by Steve Hankin, the former CEO of Sentient. Meanwhile, the parts left over will reform under the name JetDirect Aviation.

JetDirect includes the aircraft management, charter and FBO divisions. In a news release two weeks ago, CEO Gregory Campbell said splitting the company made sense for future growth of all arms of the diverse company. "Following a period of sustained and remarkable growth across all of our businesses, the Board of Managers and I concluded that the operating and capital structure of the jet membership, retail charter brokerage and fuel management programs was better suited as a separate, standalone company.

A Repeat Performance Sure to Evoke a Soaring Ovation
No one knows Citations better than Cessna. So, it just makes sense to buy a pre-owned Citation from the company that builds them. You can even select one of Cessna's pre-owned ValuePlus Citations, which have been restored to new-aircraft standards. Get the pre-owned peace of mind that only comes from the most trusted name in aviation. Choose Cessna pre-owned. For complete details, go online.
Thailand: Hot New Destination for Your Private Jet back to top 

Thailand Woos Private Jet Travel

The idyllic resort area of Phuket, Thailand is hoping to attract even more upscale business through the construction of a private jet terminal at Don Muang Airport. Property Report Asia says the country's tourism ministry believes the area is losing rich travelers because there are no facilities dedicated to private jets at Don Muang Airport or at Phuket Airport. Although there is general support for the project, there's still a lot of work to do.

For instance, the country would need immigration officers dedicated to serving the private jet arrivals, not to mention come up with the $870,000 needed to renovate part of the existing terminal. Thailand Elite, a government company that runs a "membership program" for visitors to Thailand, will look into the viability of the project, which it hopes will boost daily private aircraft arrivals to about 10 a day from the current six to seven.

Aircraft Financing to Fit Your Needs
AirFleet Capital offers a competitive and experienced approach to each and every loan program by focusing exclusively on aircraft financing. AirFleet Capital provides exceptional terms coupled with personal service and a long-term commitment to support the business and shared passion of aviation. From Light Sport Aircraft to VLJs and Business Jets, AirFleet Capital has a loan program to fit your needs. Call an AirFleet Capital financing specialist at (800) 390-4324, or request a quote online.
Hurricane Recovery back to top 

Gulf Coast Mops Up From Gustav

Hurricane Gustav was no Katrina, but it still caused plenty of headaches for aviators in the Gulf Coast region. As of Tuesday, Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans remained closed to passenger traffic and was operating on generator power, but VFR daytime operations were allowed. The airport was expected to be back to normal operations sometime Wednesday. The city's Lakefront Airport was closed and unattended as of Tuesday afternoon, according to the National Business Aviation Association's hurricane report. Most other airports in the region were reopened by Tuesday, although some were lacking electrical power. Gustav has been downgraded to a tropical depression as it moves northwest, but threats of local rains up to 20 inches and possible tornados remain.

Early reports said eight people died in the storm. Officials were asking evacuees to wait another day or so before returning home. Meanwhile, the active hurricane season continues, with three more storms -- Hannah, Ike, and Josephine -- already on track for the southeastern U.S.

"A Celebration"
Celebrating their 45th anniversary this September, the National Championship Air Races are the last head-to-head air racing event left on Earth and are the favorite among aviation enthusiasts, worldwide. The event features six high-speed racing classes and a static aircraft show, and this year the USAF Thunderbirds and F-22 Demonstration Team will highlight a fleet of world-class aviation demonstrations. For more information on the National Championship Air Races or to purchase tickets, call (775) 972-6633, or visit AirRace.org.
AVweb Commentary: Hurricanes and Airplanes back to top 

AVweb Insider Blog: Airplanes and Hurricanes

Why don't more owners move their airplanes out of a hurricane's path? One reason is that insurance companies don't expect them to. In the lastest installment of our AVweb Insider blog, Paul Bertorelli argues that this is short-sighted because it encourages victimhood and costs us all money.

Read more.

AVweb Insider Blog: Hurricane Flyouts — Why It's Not Easy

In Florida, you never know quite where the storm will go, but you can still make sensible evacuation decisions. Oh, and if you think you're subsidizing the sunny Florida lifestyle with your insurance rates, you need to read Paul Bertorelli's latest blog on this topic at the AVweb Insider.

Read more.

Precise Flight: Hidden in Plain Sight
With design capabilities as varied as the number of aircraft models available, it's easy to find at least one device manufactured by Precise Flight in the cabin, cockpit, or body of any aircraft on the market. In fact, integration is a key characteristic of Precise Flight's operating code. Learn more online.
Who's Where back to top 

UYJ Appoints Grassby Sales Director

John Grassby

John Grassby has joined Toronto-based UYJ Aviation as its new Sales Director. He formerly held positions with Bombardier Business Aircraft and Learjet Canada.

Constantine Moves to Director of Tech Services at Cutter Aviation

Dennis Constantine

Dennis Constantine has been named Director of Technical Services for Cutter Aviation FBO Network. He's been with Cutter since 2002 and was most recently its Corporate Director of Finance.

Shiells New Airframe Director at StandardAero

Scott Shiells

Scott Shiells is StandardAero's new Airframe Program Director. Shiells came from Duncan Aviation where he was project manager on maintenance and modification projects.

Diamond Aircraft Distributors Offer Tax Advantage Program
September 30th is the deadline to take advantage of up to $300,000 in depreciation opportunities on a new Diamond DA40 XLS. Diamond Aircraft distributors are also offering a $3,000 cash back incentive, to pay for the tax and legal services needed to take advantage of this tax savings opportunity. Go online for full details!
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You! back to top 

Who's Where? You Tell Us

Get a promotion or a new job? Your colleagues want to know about it, and AVwebBiz can get the word out. Drop us a line about the staff appointment, with a nice recent photo, and we'll do our best to include it in our new section, "Who's Where." The items will be permanently archived on AVweb for future reference, too.

AVweb's Newstips Address ...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. You're a part of our team ... often, the best part.

Aviation Consumer, the Only Magazine with the Guts to Tell the Truth
Truth about the gear you buy and the planes you fly. Aviation Consumer is packed with in-depth and uncompromising ratings of equipment, avionics, accessories, mods, services, aircraft, and much more. Order online and receive unlimited access to Aviation Consumer's ratings-packed web information database!
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learn back to top 

AVweb's AirVenture 2008 Video Round-Up

Original, Exclusive Videos from AVweb | Reader-Submitted & Viral Videos

This year at EAA AirVenture we brought you fourteen video reports over the course of seven days. We realize the news was flying fast and furious during the show, so just in case you missed any of our reports, you can catch them all here. (The main frame contains all of our videos, or you can click over to a particular video if one interests you more than the others.)

Editors' Preview


Rocket Racers

Contest Winner


Bobby Sturgell

ChallengeAir Auction

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Try disabling ad blockers and refreshing this page.
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Sean Tucker


Martin Jet Pack



ATC Tower


Names Behind the News back to top 

Meet the AVwebBiz Team

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

The AVwebBiz team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Scott Simmons

Mariano Rosales
Jeff van West

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