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July 30, 2000
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Sunday OSHtalk (July 30, 2000) The last evening around the Coleman lantern at the North Forty aircraft camping area of EAA's AirVenture 2000 has host Rick Durden commenting on the tough flying weather that prevailed for much of the day, the fact that many of the airplanes have departed leaving lots of parking spots for those who want to arrive for the last two days of the show, and the unusual sight of FAA Administrator Jane Garvey's Gulfstream "N1" sitting on the taxiway with the rest of the airplanes in the departure line after the airshow. In the first segment, Al Waddill, sales manager of Groen Brothers Aviation that builds the Hawk Gyroplane, had a chance to tell Rick about their developments over the past year. When he was on OSHtalk last year, Waddill promised that a turbine powered Hawk would be at AirVenture 2000. He kept his word. Al talked about the capabilities of the turbine aircraft as well as the piston-powered version and said certification was anticipated the end of 2001. The next segment included a chat with Cory Sims, who learned to fly later in life and now was experiencing her sixth Oshkosh convention after sharing flying duties from Oakland, California in a Grumman Tiger. Her description of finally deciding that she could learn to fly after wanting to do so all of her life should be an inspiration to anyone who has wanted to follow a dream but has not yet done so. Rick asked Cory whether she would be willing to let her son fly to Oshkosh when he turns 17 and gets his private rating. She said "yes,".which was a perfect introduction to Chris Cannon and Herb Ballou, both 17, of Helena, Montana. They soloed on their respective 16th birthdays and got their private tickets on their 17th birthdays. They are not even seniors in high school but have just flown a Bellanca Scout to Oshkosh. They describe planning and saving for the trip, to the point that one had to quit his job to make it. These young men are the future of aviation, and they demonstrate to all of us that the future looks very good.In the third segment, host Rick Durden discovered that not all news in the aviation insurance business is bad for pilots. Bill Fanning, president of the Pilot Insurance Center, briefed Rick on how his company does a more sophisticated job of rating pilots for life insurance than other life insurance companies. His company is able to obtain life insurance for most pilots without the normal exclusions if death occurs while flying in a general aviation airplane. He explained that this is a new approach to life insurance and so far it is working well for his company and pilots are generally benefiting by being able to obtain lower rates and better coverage. To close out this year's OSHtalk, Rick sat back and enjoyed a conversation with AVweb founder and editor-in-chief Mike Busch about an exciting new Diesel aircraft engine under development. Under a R&D contract with NASA, Teledyne Continental Motors of Mobile, Ala., is developing the new GAP (General Aviation Propulsion) engine, an innovative liquid-cooled two-stroke turbo Diesel that runs on Jet A and is expected to have a 3,000-hour TBO.. Mike outlined the advantages of this engine, as well several significant problems that TCM must solve before the engine can enter production to replace current general aviation piston engines.
Listen to Sunday OSHtalk (running time 69 minutes).