August 19, 2013
By Ian J. Twombly
With winter nearly around the corner, it's time to begin planning for cold temperatures. That means engine preheating solutions. FST Regal introduced a remote switchbox last year that enables users to turn on and off their engine preheater with simply a phone call or by interacting with a free smartphone application. Now the device comes with two new features.
A smartphone is the easiest way to operate the switchbox, and now Android users will have the option to do so with a new application. The free software can turn on and off either of the switchbox's two outlets. So you can turn on the preheater a few hours before coming to the hangar, and the coffee pot a few minutes prior.
This feature, as well as the standard phone interface, works through a cellphone card installed in the box. That card needs to be updated in order for the remote features to continue working. Trying to explain this process to an AT&T representative can be a challenge. To ease the pain, FST has developed a concierge service that manages the cellular card, negating the need for owners to do anything. The service is a bargain at $80 a year.
Flight Training Editor Ian J. Twombly joined AOPA in 2003 and is an instrument flight instructor.
New Zealand helicopter company Composite Helicopters is moving from kit to certified carbon fiber rotorcraft.
More than 500 members of the Montana aviation community turned out to “fly the Big Sky” by attending the thirty-first annual Montana Aviation Conference.
An ice runway that has become a New England destination tradition continues: 2,600 feet of Alton Bay have been scraped clean by dedicated volunteers.
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