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AOPA Online Members Only -- -- AOPA ePilot Volume 2, Issue 25AOPA Online Members Only -- -- AOPA ePilot Volume 2, Issue 25


Inside AOPA

On Capitol Hill

Airport Support Network

ASF News

Quiz Me!

Picture of the day

ePilot Calendar

Weekend Weather

Manufacturer announces new name, new plane
Jeppesen Sanderson to be sold
Magazine arrives nearly 20 years late
AOPA makes ground in new SFO Class B
Volume 2, Issue 25
June 23, 2000
GA News
Under its new company name, The Lancair Company has officially announced the development of its next airplane, the Columbia 400. The new plane will be powered by a twin-turbocharged, twin-intercooled Continental TSIO-550 engine and will retain the same fixed-gear configuration as the certified Columbia 300. The target date for the maiden flight of the Columbia 400 is June 30. Performance figures for the new 310-hp aircraft have not been released, but company officials said that "it will blow your socks off." Once the Columbia 400 is certified deliveries are expected to begin in about 12 months. The company also announced that it has changed its name to The Lancair Company from Pacific Aviation Composites. "This company name change has been planned for quite some time. It capitalizes on the strong identity the name 'Lancair' has earned over the last 15 years with regard to quality, style, and performance," said Lance Neibauer, Lancair president and CEO. Coupled with a multi-million-dollar investment, Lancair is adding staff to all manufacturing areas to handle production of the new plane. (Photo of Lancair Columbia 300)


A merger between the Tribune Company-owner of the Chicago Tribune-and The Times Mirror Company has been completed following the approval of the deal by Tribune stockholders. A Tribune spokeswoman said her company would sell Jeppesen Sanderson, formerly owned by Times Mirror, and Tribune Education, publisher of supplemental education materials. The spokeswoman, Katherine Sopranos, said she could not reveal the bidders for Jeppesen.

The Belfort Instrument Company has developed DigiWx–an automated weather sensing station designed for private use. The system includes instruments to detect and report atmospheric pressure, wind speed and direction, wind gust intensity, temperature, dew point, density altitude and relative humidity. Belfort's aim is to sell these $6,950 units (which includes an instrument mast and a handheld receiver) to heliports, seaplane bases, resorts, cropdusting outfits and balloon operations. The handheld receiver lets you access a discrete frequency and display wind components on a runway image symbolic of the customer's runway orientation. Additional receivers are $595 apiece. DigiWx comes with a one-year warranty, and Belfort says that the instruments are pilot-maintainable. Contact Belfort at 800/937-2353, or visit the Web site.

When Jack Gerbl of San Jacinto, California, recently received his copy of AOPA Pilot magazine, there was something peculiar-the date read October 1982. It took more than 17 years for it to arrive in his mailbox. The U.S. Postal Service was confused and didn't have any answers as to why it took the agency so long to deliver it. A postal official told The (Riverside) Press-Enterprise that he had never heard of a magazine being delivered that long after it was mailed. "It was in pristine condition. I know it was sitting in the bag somewhere," Gerbl told the newspaper.

For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

Inside AOPA
Following a formal complaint from AOPA and the Air Transport Association, the FAA has ordered the city of Los Angeles to return more than $20 million of revenue improperly diverted from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). "This is an important ruling for general aviation," said Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of regional affairs. "That's $20 million that Los Angeles could and should have spent on its airports, including its three general aviation airports." (Los Angeles also owns Van Nuys, Palmdale and Ontario airports) In 1985, the state of California condemned some 1.5 million square feet of airport land to build the Century Freeway. In 1995, the city transferred the proceeds from that sale (some $58 million) from the airport account to the general fund. AOPA's 1995 complaint to the FAA argued that it was illegal "revenue diversion." The FAA agreed that some of the money should have remained with the airport. "We have determined that the city of Los Angeles is in violation of its federal obligations regarding the use of proceeds from the sale of airport property," the agency said in its "preliminary determination" released June 20. "This ruling shows that the FAA is starting to get serious about enforcing the law that airport revenues must be used for the benefit of airports," said Dunn.

The FAA has published its final rule, reconfiguring the San Francisco Class B airspace. The new airspace will become effective on September 7 with the publication of new sectional and terminal area charts. Thanks to input from AOPA and local pilots, the FAA did not expand the inner five-mile ring to the south. That preserved noise abatement procedures developed for San Carlos Airport by local pilots. The FAA also agreed to a Class B airspace "cut out" over the Sausalito VOR and Mount Tamalpais, allowing more airspace for VFR aircraft and sailplanes. The agency moved an eastern boundary to align with Interstate 580. The FAA did raise the top of the Class B from 8,000 to 10,000 feet. AOPA had asked that portions of the Class B remain at 8,000 feet to allow north- and southbound VFR traffic to operate "over the top." The FAA refused, but promised that pilots would be able to easily get clearance to transit through the Class B.

AOPA attorney Kathy Yodice last week argued against the FAA's authority to close an airport. A three-judge panel of the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals that convened in St. Paul, Minnesota, on June 13 heard AOPA's arguments, alleging that the FAA has exceeded its authority in "releasing" an airport sponsor from its Airport Improvement Program or surplus property grant obligations. The suit is specifically challenging the FAA's decisions that permitted Kansas City (Missouri) to close Richards-Gebaur Memorial Airport, a former Air Force base conveyed in 1985 for use as a civilian reliever airport. The judges also heard from the attorneys representing the FAA, the city of Kansas City, and Friends of Richards-Gebaur. The court will issue its ruling later. For more information, see the Web site.

The June 12 airing of Private Planes on cable TV's History Channel drew double the expected audience for an episode in the network's Modern Marvels series, said the program's producer. AOPA assisted in the production as a consultant for a balanced, comprehensive presentation of general aviation and appeared in four interview segments. In a brief poll on AOPA Online last week, 294 AOPA members critiqued the show. Some 65 percent said general aviation was fairly represented, but 75 percent believed the program placed too much emphasis on business jets. More than 85 percent of this non-scientific sample watched the entire program.

On Capitol Hill
The House and Senate approved legislation late last week that will provide aviation funding for the 2001 fiscal year. Based on early analysis of the bills, AOPA budget experts estimate that programs key to AOPA will receive funding at or above the Clinton administration's requested level. Neither bill includes aviation user fees nor an airline-proposed commission to study air traffic control. Programs important to AOPA now set to receive funding include OASIS, the equipment designed to modernize flight service stations, as well as the loran navigation system. The House/Senate conference will start in the coming weeks with bill completion expected before the August recess.

The House Resources Committee voted to approve a bill that protects general aviation access to backcountry airstrips. Congressman and AOPA member Jim Hansen, the bill's author in the House, offered his own amendment, clarifying the definition of backcountry airstrips as "those commonly known by federal agencies and pilots and consistently used by pilots for takeoffs and landings." The bill passed by voice vote despite opposition from some Democrats who offered an amendment requiring a study of the issue before further action is taken. The bill is expected to reach the full House in the coming weeks.

Airport Support Network
After locals banded together to save the Lakes Region Airport in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, from turning into residential property, the state created an airport authority. Even before becoming an ASN volunteer, Jay Chastenay actively kept AOPA up to date on the issue. The airport owner had long desired to sell it to developers with grandiose plans to scrap the airport. Local users immediately began working with the state to enact legislation to create an airport authority to preserve the facility, which serves as an important regional hub for land and seaplanes. In March the voters of Wolfeboro expressed their resounding support, voting 78 percent in favor of an airport authority, following a massive campaign by volunteers. With this vote of confidence, the legislation quickly moved forward. On June 9, Gov. Jeanne Shaheen signed the bill to establish an airport authority for the town of Wolfeboro.

Click here to learn more about the Airport Support Network.

AOPA Air Safety Foundation News
Jeff Rubenstein of Syracuse, New York, won an AOPA Air Safety Foundation auction for an air-to-air photo session featuring his newly purchased Jaguar edition Beech Baron. Doing the honors this time was AOPA Pilot photographer Mike Fizer. ASF auction winners are also photographed by Pilot photographer Mike Collins. ASF raises money to support air safety programs through the auction of a wide range of items. Photos were taken Tuesday over Rubenstein's farm, 22 nm southeast of Syracuse. Helping with the flight were AOPA Senior Editor Al Marsh in the lead aircraft and Editor At Large Tom Horne as the formation pilot.

Quiz me!
Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge.

Question: I would like to know how to find the bank angle for a standard rate turn in a large aircraft. I think there is a rule of thumb for small airplanes (10 percent of the TAS plus 5.) Is there any difference for large airplanes that have approach speeds of 150 to 160 knots?
Answer: The same rule would apply for airplanes with approach speeds of 150 or 160 knots. The rule of thumb is 1/10 of the speed plus 5 for degrees of bank. Example: If your airspeed is 130 knots, then the standard rate bank is 13 plus 5 or 18 degrees bank angle. The top limit would be a maximum of 30 degrees, or 25 degrees if using a flight director system.

Got a technical question? Call our technical specialists at 800/872-2672 or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].

Picture of the day
Jump to the AOPA Online Gallery to see the featured airplane of the day. Click on the link for details on how to capture wallpaper for your work area. Visit the AOPA Online Gallery.

What's new at AOPA Online
AOPA Pilot and AOPA Online are trying something new, and ePilot readers are the first to know about it. The July issue of Pilot–which you either just received or should arrive in the next few days–includes an article titled "Breaking Out" by Thomas A. Horne (p. 95). It’s about transitioning from IMC weather to VFR conditions and how instrument pilots can better handle that difficult transition. If you have access to Microsoft's Flight Simulator 2000 program, you'll be able to try the IFR-to-VFR transition for yourself. Just click on the link to download the Flight Simulator 2000 files and read instructions on how to install and run them.

ePilot Calendar
Boise, Idaho. The Boise River Festival takes place June 22 through 25, featuring hot air balloon rallies, giant inflatable parades, and the seventh largest fireworks show in the nation. Boise Air Terminal/Gowen Field (BOI), 208/383-3110, serves the area. Call 208/338-8887 for event information.

Longmont, Colorado. The Rocky Mountain EAA Regional Fly-In takes place June 24 and 25. Vance Brand Airport (2V2), 303/651-8431, is the host airport. Call 303/772-7170 for event information.

Santa Monica, California. The Mustang Wings and Wheels Expo takes place June 25, featuring both P-51 and Ford Mustangs. Santa Monica Municipal Airport (SMO), 310/458-8591, is the host airport. Call 310/374-7508 for event information.

AOPA Expo 2000
takes place in Long Beach, California, October 20 through 22. Visit the Web site.

For more airport details, see AOPA’s Airport Directory Online. For more events, see the Aviation Calendar of Events.

(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Phoenix, Arizona, and Reston, Virginia, June 24 and 25. Clinics are scheduled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Portland, Maine; and Seattle, Washington, July 8 and 9. For complete details, visit the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule.

The next AOPA ASF Safety Seminars are scheduled in Albany, New York, June 26; Syracuse, New York, June 27; Rochester, New York, June 28; and Niagara Falls, New York, June 29. For more information about ASF Safety Seminars, visit the Web site.

(Pinch Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter� Ground School will take place July 9 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. For details and a complete schedule, see the Pinch Hitter Ground School Schedule.

Featuring AOPA President Phil Boyer
(7:30 p.m.; admission is free)
The next Pilot Town Meetings are in Lansing, Michigan, August 22; Des Moines, Iowa, August 23; and Omaha, Nebraska, August 24. Click for more information on Pilot Town Meetings.

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