| Dec. 10, 2007
What's New -- Products and Services
This month AVweb's survey of the latest products and services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft owners brings you a Cozy model, indestructible plotter, survival pack and much more.
If you know of a new product or service other AVweb readers should hear about, please send us a note.
Powerful Learning Pilot Training Software
Powerful Learning, a supplier of study materials for commercial aircraft pilots, is introducing two new software products for flight schools and GA pilots; the VFR Pilot Review System and the Private Pilot Study System. Both software packages are designed around a three-pieces concept:
- Testing and review software;
- A comprehensive aviation reference library; and
For flight schools, the integration technology developed by Powerful Learning can be customized to enhance computer-based training program. They can design learning modules linked directly to a particular aircraft manual so your students will learn faster, cheaper, and more thoroughly.
Each software package is highly customizable (random questions, choose categories, mark question for review, show answer, view explanations, grading system, etc.) and contains multiple tests to choose from.
The Private Pilot Study System contains the FAA Knowledge Test for the Private Pilot Certificate, plus 12 additional tests to choose from, including unique tests designed to help a student learn METAR and TAF codes. The Private Pilot Study System also includes a unique flashcard mode of test delivery: Questions can be displayed with no answer showing, or with the answer automatically revealed for reviewing.
The VFR Pilot Review System contains 12 tests to choose from. Questions can be delivered in a multiple choice format, or in an open-ended format (a good way to prepare for a flight review). Powerful Learning has embedded links to many online courses directly into the answer windows for certain questions. From inside the testing environment you can launch an online course relevant to the question you are on and take the entire course without ever leaving the testing environment.
Both software packages contain an Aviation Reference Library. The entire library, including the FAR/AIM, can be updated from Powerful Learning's Web site. To purchase the books in the library in traditional paper form would cost approximately $130. The library is a great stand alone reference source for GA pilots, flight school owners, students, CFIs, corporate operators and examiners alike.
The third piece, Integration, makes this software an incredibly powerful learning tool. From any test or review question, with the click of a button, Powerful Learning's software will go to the library, find the book relevant to the question you are on, open the book to the appropriate chapter and page and highlight the answer for your question.
Free demo versions of the VFR Pilot Review System and the Private Pilot Study System are available from their Web site.
Sporty's 2007 Christmas Ornament
This year's Sporty's Christmas Ornament features Charles Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis. This aircraft was selected for the 2007 ornament because 80 years ago this year Lindbergh made his famous flight.
The Spirit of St. Louis is etched on the ornament, along with the year. Sporty's Crystal Christmas ornament comes in an attractive gift box and includes a colorful ribbon.
Sporty's 2007 Crystal Christmas Ornament is available for $24.95 and may be ordered from Sporty's Web site.
PilotMall.com ParmaT Sunglasses
PilotMall.com has released ParmaT, the latest in the company's line of aviation sunglasses. ParmaT features the HDL-3CT high-definition lens that equalizes the color spectrum, obtaining a generalized increase of the relative transmittance factors without reduction of any color, thus increasing clarity and visual performance.
The new, frameless, Italian, ParmaT sunglasses have a comfort spring hinge and the lenses provide 100% UV protection. ParmaT is available in Grey or Rose lenses. Each pair includes a micro fiber pouch and hard case with a one year guarantee, and are $149.
Visit PilotMall.com for more information.
Cozy Mark IV Model
The Cozy Mark IV is the latest homebuilt to be immortalized as a model. The 1:32 scale model is made of composite resins. The marriage of art and science began with a master copy developed from the plans using a high-precision CNC machine to give shape to a solid piece of metal. Production copies were cast in special tooling and hand finished for accuracy.
The model features a retractable nose gear, a painted propeller and night lights. No assembly is required and the model will fit nicely on any shelf or desk space. The wingspan measures 10.5" and the model stands 3.6" high. Available for $95, the Cozy model can be ordered through Aircraft Spruce's Web site.
Sporty's Indestructible Plotter
If you have checked a low-altitude, en route chart lately, you will have noticed they have been reconfigured: There are now 36 charts with nine mileage scales. Sporty's Indestructible Instrument Plotter has been updated to work with all of them.
The Instrument Plotter conveniently measures distance and courses as well as calculates holding-pattern entries on any FAA Low Altitude En Route Chart. The Instrument Plotter includes 10 individual, easy-to-read mileage scales and a compass rose. The holding pattern diagram can be overlaid on the chart to determine holding entries in seconds for both standard and non-standard patterns.
At 8 inches long, the Instrument Plotter can slide into a shirt pocket and comes with complete instructions. It comes with a lifetime guarantee and is acceptable for use during FAA written exams.
The Instrument Plotter with Holding Entry Calculator is available for $4.95 from Sporty's Web site.
Collier Trophy Centennial Medallion Series 3
The third edition in the National Aeronautics Associations (NAA) Collier Trophy Centennial Medallion Series is now available.
A special commemorative card encases a heavy metal medallion showing the 96-year old Collier Trophy on one side and an image of the F-22 Raptor on the reverse. (The F-22 was the Collier Trophy winner for 2006.) Also available are medallions from Series 2 (Eclipse 500 jet) and Series 1 (SpaceShipOne).
The cost is $21.95 for members of NAA and $26.95 for non-members. U.S. shipping is free. You can order from NAA's More info from the Web site.
Sporty's 2-Man Survival Pack
Sporty's Survival Pack is and has been upgraded to include new items and larger quantities of items, all while remaining stowed in a compact backpack weighing only 12 lbs.
This Survival Pack was custom designed with the general aviation pilot in mind. It contains a large selection of quality supplies in each of six groups necessary for survival and rescue:
- Medical and First Aid Group: First aid cream, adhesive bandages, cotton balls, gauze bandage, antiseptic towelettes and non-aspirin acetaminophen tablets.
- Food and Water Group: 1 qt. rugged canteen, two 3600 calorie food bars, water-purification tablets, fishing kit and 8 water packs.
- Signal and Light Group: Two light sticks, whistle, long burn candle, signal mirror and a high-intensity strobe light.
- Emergency Devices Group: Quality utility knife, 50 ft. nylon rope, wire saw, quality liquid-filled compass, toilet tissue and sewing needles.
- Shelter and Protection Group: Large, orange two-person tent, two emergency space blankets (84" x 55") and two emergency sleeping bags.
- Fire and Cooking Group: 50 waterproof matches with case, fire starting sticks and metal cookpot.
All of these items are packaged in a high-quality, red backpack that is 12 inches wide, 17 inches high and 10 inches deep and weighs 12 lbs. (without water). The Survival Pack is available for $159.95 and may be ordered from Sporty's Web site.
Aircraft Spruce VibraLITE 8 Wristwatch
The new VibraLITE 8 wristwatch, now available through Aircraft Spruce, has many pilot-friendly functions.
It can be pre-set to sound off or vibrate for as many as eight different times. A countdown timer has an auto-repeat function that goes off when a period of time has elapsed and then begins to automatically count down again and again. It can also be set to provide reminders that a countdown time is approaching.
Illumination is provided to the dial by wrist action or by pushing a button.
The watch can be set in 12 or 24 hour time modes and will display three time zones for reference, allowing you to set local time, destination time and zulu time. The stopwatch function will clock elapsed time up to 24 hours. Of course it will also function as a simple alarm clock when traveling.
The VibraLITE 8 Model VL8SL-BK has a stainless steel back, is water resistant, comes with a one year warranty and costs $129.95 from the Aircraft Spruce Web site.
Tanis Engine Dehydrator
All engines develop moisture between flights and, when trapped in your engine's crankcase, this moisture creates the perfect environment for rust and corrosion. The Tanis Engine Dehydrator reduces this damaging moisture by moving a large volume of air from the engine, over a desiccant, and back to the engine. The result is a closed loop of ever-drier air moving through your engine.
If you aren't flying once a week, the humidity level in your crankcase could be as high as 98 percent. When run continuously, the Tanis Engine Dehydrator can reduce the humidity in your engine's crankcase to less than 10 percent.
The Engine Dehydrator is simple to use: Hook one hose to your engine's oil filler tube, hook the other hose to your breather tube and turn it on. It works with all Lycoming and most Continental engines. An LCD screen displays humidity and temperature for easy monitoring.
Active indicating desiccant crystals change color when they need to be reactivated. Conveniently, a reactivating heater is built in. Simply flip the switch on the engine dehydrator to "reactivate" and, in approximately four hours, the crystals are fully dried and ready to use again.
Portable enough to take with you on a flight, the Tanis Engine Dehydrator comes with the desiccant crystals, runs on 110V, measures 16-inches long x 9.5-inches wide x 9.5-inches high and weighs only 13 lbs. when full.
The Tanis Engine Dehydrator is available for $649 from Sporty's Web site.
Laminar Flow Systems Speedpants for Piper PA-28 and PA-32s
Stating that they can increase airspeed by as much as 10.5 mph, Laminar Flow Systems is now offering a refined version of their SpeedPants for Piper PA-28 and PA-32 models. These units are five times stronger than the original Piper wheelpants, six pounds lighter and considerably more aerodynamic.
All mounting points on the new SpeedPants are reinforced with Kevlar for increased strength. They are available with a white gel-coat finish or can be ordered in a gray primer for custom painting.
The SpeedPants come with a three year warranty that is not affected by the number of hours flown and are backed by a money back guarantee (less shipping and installation).
Available starting at $1995, SpeedPants can be ordered from Laminar Flow Systems' Web site.
IWASM Playing Cards
International Women's Air & Space Museum (IWASM) Playing Cards celebrate women of air & space. Makes a perfect gift or collectible item. Each of the 55 cards (52 regular cards and three wild cards) features a photo of a different women or organization plus a fascinating facts. Many of the photos are from the IWASM archives. Buy one to use and one to keep!
A pack of cards is $10 at the IWASM Web site.
Want more? Check out What's New from other months.
If you know of a new product or service other AVweb readers should hear about, please send us a note.