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Dec. 16, 2011, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' newsletterDec. 16, 2011, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' newsletter

AOPA ePilot

In This Issue:

VOLUME 13, ISSUE 50 — December 16, 2011

‘Aging Gracefully, Flying Safely’
Fly like a fighter: Where’s the runway?
LightSquared investors get SEC warning
Quiz Me: Logging time


Safety >>

Picture Perfect

Picture Perfect >>


AOPA Live >>

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‘Aging Gracefully, Flying Safely’: Advice for older pilots

Feature Like the nation as a whole, the pilot population is getting older. It’s a fact that raises a number of questions, not only about the future of general aviation, but about more practical, here-and-now issues: What effects does aging have on piloting performance? How can we keep flying as safely as possible? And how, as individuals, do we know when it’s time to say “when”? The Air Safety Institute’s new online course, Aging Gracefully, Flying Safely, is part of the institute’s effort to address such questions. Built around a positive but honest discussion with five older pilots, the free course aims to increase awareness of common changes associated with aging, as well as practical ways to adjust. Get started >>

Introducing, the best pilot headset ever from Bose.

NEW Bose A20™ Aviation Headset
The A20® Aviation Headset provides significantly greater noise reduction than currently available. It also features an improved level of comfort, clear audio, Bluetooth® connectivity, auxiliary audio input and priority switching. Learn more >


GA News

Digital chart charge meeting kicks off dialogue

For the first time since it announced it would start charging for its digital chart products, the FAA’s AeroNav Services branch brought together major stakeholders Dec. 13 to float ideas and field suggestions. The FAA said it must recover $5 million of operating costs in the first year of digital charges, and proposed options for reaching that number. Some, it was clear, were nonstarters. But input from AOPA and dozens of vendors will help the agency draft a proposal that it has committed to releasing for public comment in early 2012. Read more >>

‘AOPA Pilot’ comes to Apple’s iPad

Would aviation be the same without AOPA Pilot and the iPad? Now the two indispensable pilot accessories are together in a new way thanks to the AOPA Mags app. The application delivers both AOPA Pilot and Flight Training magazines in an iPad-optimized format. Digital-edition-only subscribers now have the option of reading their magazines on the iPad, computers, or any number of electronic devices, while digital-edition-add-on readers have the ultimate choice of print, digital, or tablet. Read more >>

1954 Aerocar offered for sale

1954 Aerocar offered for sael There are only six Aerocars left from the 1950s and `60s when inventor Molt Taylor hoped to put airplanes both on the highway and on the airport. One of them is for sale for $1.25 million. Courtesy Aircraft located in Rockford, Ill., is brokering the sale of Aerocar N101D most recently owned by Greg Herrick’s Yellowstone Aviation and on display at the Golden Wings Flying Museum at Anoka County/Blaine Airport 10 miles north of Minneapolis. The aircraft was serial No. 3 and won a United States type certificate. Read more >>

Your IFR rating in 10 days at your location … IFR finish-up in as little as 3 days!

Professional teachers, specialized curriculum. IFR specialists for 30+ years. Whether flying G1000, Avidyne Entegra, Aspen, Cirrus Perspective or analog instruments, our instructors have the experience. Put “Instrument Rated” on your calendar NOW. 800-435-9437. Already Rated, but rusty? Our IFR Safety Course will get you current and make you a safer pilot.

Czech Sport Aircraft offers lower-cost trainer

Flight schools are the targeted market for the SportCruiser Classic, a Czech-built model that is equipped with an analog instrument panel to bring the introductory price down to $119,500, including transportation and document charges. It is offered through U.S. Sport Aircraft in Fort Pierce, Fla. Other than a different paint scheme, it is identical to the SportCruiser, the flagship model that can reach prices of $150,000 to $160,000 with avionics options that include a glass cockpit. Read more >>

Private space race gets new entrant

Private space race gets new entrant Tired of getting into orbit the same old way? Relief may be coming from Stratolaunch Systems, a collaboration between Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and Burt Rutan, in a project that will merge a Rutan-inspired design with certain hardware and engines from Boeing 747s to create a huge airplane that will launch rockets into orbit during high-altitude flight. The mobile launch system will include the carrier under development at Rutan’s Scaled Composites; a multi-stage booster manufactured by Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX); and a mating and integration system built by aerospace engineering firm Dynetics. Read more >>

Sun 'n Fun preps grounds for drier 2012 show

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds as airshow headliners for the Sun ’n Fun International Fly-In and Expo is not all that will be new in 2012. There will also be plenty of new dirt, gravel, and other enhancements to better manage whatever weather phenomena that may decide to descend on the Lakeland, Fla., event in 2012. A tornado swept over the fly-in in 2011, causing significant damage to a number of airplanes and flooding parking lots and some other facilities. Read more >>

Goulian wins top airshow performer award

Goulian wins top airshow performer award Airshow performer and past national aerobatic Unlimited Class champion Michael Goulian has won the airshow industry’s top award given for making the greatest contributions over the past year. With receipt of the International Council of Air Shows (ICAS) Sword of Excellence, Goulian becomes only the seventh airshow professional to be awarded all three of the airshow industry’s top honors: the ICAS Sword of Excellence, the Art Scholl Memorial Showmanship Award, and the Bill Barber Award for Showmanship. Read more >>

Where the love-light gleams

Call it a rite of passage, or an occupational hazard, or just one of those things that come with the territory: If you work in the aviation industry, there’s always a chance that you may find yourself far from home during those special times when other families are gathering to share the joy of the season. That’s when the camaraderie that’s so natural in the aviation community—and a few special touches from others who care—can help make the loneliness vanish, replaced by the joys of giving and sharing. Read more >>

Video contest offers English Channel flight prize

A video contest promises to send one American woman to the United Kingdom for a general aviation flight across the English Channel in celebration of an aviatrix’s historic flight 100 years earlier. The organizers of Women of Aviation Worldwide Week events, which celebrate milestones of women in aviation and aim to get more women flying, are holding the “Across the Channel: Women Unifying Nations” video contest to mark the 100th anniversary of Harriet Quimby’s flight across the channel. Read more >>

Reagan-era FAA chief dies at 86

J. Lynn Helms, who served as president and chief executive at Piper Aircraft in the 1970s and FAA administrator during the Reagan administration, died Dec. 10 at his home, according to reports. He was 86. Read more >>

Piper issues M-series landing gear SB

The landing gear of some Piper M-series airplanes may not remain in the down and locked position when the aircraft are parked for extended periods of time, Piper notified owners in a service bulletin. Read the bulletin for affected serial numbers and instructions on moving or towing the aircraft.

BlogsAOPA Now: One hundred years of transcontinental flight

Situated right on the water, Long Beach, Calif., is a major port as well as a great place to fly. AOPA President Craig Fuller traveled across the country to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the first transcontinental flight. Could Cal Rodgers and the Long Beach leaders who helped him complete his dream have imagined where we would be today, 100 years later? Read more >>

BlogsMedical Sense: Reflections and connections

There are plenty of tough jobs in the federal government, and overseeing the operation of the FAA Aerospace Medical Certification Division may be one of the most challenging, writes AOPA Director of Medical Certification Gary Crump. Dr. Warren Silberman has handled the pressure with patience, resilience, and professionalism. On Dec. 31, he will retire from the FAA. Read more >>

BlogsHover Power: H-V curve

Helicopter manufactures publish a chart in the flight manual that depicts combinations of airspeed and altitude that should be avoided. The chart shows shaded areas that should be avoided because in the event of a power failure the helicopter might not be able to perform a successful autorotation. Read more >>

BlogsReporting Points

Blind spotsList FBO freebies here


Rotary-wing flying for less

Affordable helicopters? It may sound like a contradiction, but this week The Aviators highlights some rotorcraft you could snag for between $30,000 and $125,000—if you’re willing to put in the legwork. From ultralight gyroplanes to 180-horsepower two-seat helicopters, these amateur-built creations can get in and out of some tight spots. Watch AOPA Live® >>


For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

You didn’t get where you are today by standing on the sidelines when opportunity knocks.

And opportunity is knocking right now at Cirrus on the world’s leading personal aircraft. There are incredible time sensitive tax incentives that can offer you up to 100% depreciation in Year I based upon your business use of the aircraft. But you have to act this year, before December 31, 2011 to take advantage of this capital preservation opportunity.

Safety & Proficiency

Fly like a fighter: Where’s the runway?

Turning final as the No. 2 ship in an F-15 formation, pilot Larry Brown realized they had a big problem: The setting sun was aligned directly with the end of the runway, making it nearly impossible to see straight ahead for landing. Read more >>

IFR Fix: The comfort factor

IFR Fix: The comfort factor The big holiday flight with the family aboard is tomorrow. Weather’s only looking so-so—but you’re IFR current, proficient, and eager to fly the FBO’s familiar trainer. Phone call for you from the FBO: The aircraft is down for maintenance. But, good news! The new bird we’ve been expecting is in. Wait until you see the panel on this aircraft. You can fly it without a checkout because it’s the same make and model as the aircraft you’ve been renting. Is this a go, or a no-go? Read more and take the poll >>

ForeFlight Mobile for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch

Introducing version 4.3: Measure, Manage, Log, and Share
The latest update adds a dynamic map ruler, online account management, logbook exporting, and flight sharing via Twitter or email. Available for download from iTunes App Store.

It only takes one

Perhaps the most baffling of all aviation accidents are the ones in which a skilled pilot flies a highly capable aircraft into a hillside. On the morning of Dec. 20, 2010, the pilot of a piston-engine Commander 680FL on a short hop from Palm Springs to Chino, Calif., died when his airplane hit a hilltop at an elevation of just more than 2,500 feet msl. The solo pilot was a 33,000-hour air transport pilot, type-rated in no fewer than seven transport-category aircraft, who also held a multiengine and instrument instructor’s certificate. Read more in this special report from the Air Safety Institute.

Air Safety Institute exposes the chilling truth

Aircraft Icing Safety Advisor from the Air Safety Institute Ice is anything but nice as it disrupts the smooth airflow over your aircraft. A chilly scenario: As you add power to compensate for the ice-induced increase in drag, you raise the aircraft’s nose to maintain altitude, which also increases the aircraft’s angle of attack. You’ve now exposed the underside of the wings and fuselage to additional ice buildup where no heat or deicing boots can reach it. Avoid icing problems with the Air Safety Institute’s Aircraft Icing Safety Advisor’s life-saving tips and solid advice. Download it today >>

Experience the Garmin 3-D Audio Difference

Advanced audio processing in Garmin’s GMA 350/350H audio panel helps you differentiate between the audio inputs coming into your headset. When multiple COM radio sources are monitored, they seem to come from different locations around you. Try the demo today.

Miss it live? Recorded Webinar offers buying advice

There is a lot to consider when deciding whether to buy an aircraft. How much is the aircraft really worth? Are there hidden costs and what are they? What financing is available? What about insurance? Is a prepurchase inspection a good idea, and how is one arranged? AOPA's aviation technical specialists answer these questions and more in a recorded Webinar discussing the aircraft purchasing process. Watch AOPA Live >>

Take the guesswork out of risk assessment

As pilots, we make decisions about risk all the time. Most are pretty clear-cut, but there will always be “gray areas” to contend with—which is why the Air Safety Institute developed an innovative application to help out. The ASI Flight Risk Evaluator is a two-part online course that covers the basics of risk management, and then lets you input the details of an upcoming flight and get an assessment of the potential risks. Give it a try >>

BlogsLeading Edge: Realistic expectations?

How do we prevent tragedies like the accidents that claimed several lives over the Thanksgiving holiday? Members shared strong opinions on the subject, and a combination of solutions may yield the best results. As we work on improving flight instruction, the whole business of teaching risk management is worthwhile, writes AOPA Foundation President Bruce Landsberg. Explain and study the high risk areas. Communicate clearly and know that a few will ignore or forget the hard lessons of another pilot’s mistakes. Read more >>

Buy A New Diamond Aircraft Now ... 2012�s @ 2011 Prices!

PRICE ROLLBACK! Now is the time to get the best deal on a new Diamond aircraft. Buy a 2012 model at 2011 prices. There are a limited number of Diamonds available at 2011 prices, so act now! Realize 100% bonus depreciation before December 31, 2011 on a new aircraft purchase or new interior and performance enhancements that will make your aircraft safer and ensure greater resale value. Click for details.

Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Jan. 7 and 8

Baltimore, Md.

Ypsilanti, Mich.

Portland, Ore.

San Antonio, Texas

Jan. 14 and 15

Long Beach, Calif.

Jackson, Miss.

Charlotte, N.C.


Jan. 21 and 22

San Jose, Calif.

Bellevue, Wash.

Jan. 28 and 29

Sevierville, Tenn.


For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Can’t make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.

Jan. 9

Mesa, Ariz.

Reno, Nev.



Jan. 10

Tucson, Ariz.

Sacramento, Calif.

Jan. 11

Milpitas, Calif.

El Paso, Texas

Jan. 12

Santa Rosa, Calif.

Albuquerque, N.M.


Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

AOPA Life Insurance—low rates, exclusively for pilots.

Finding quality, affordable insurance to meet your personal needs can be challenging. That’s why AOPA has done the legwork for you and developed a comprehensive offering of products with low rates and great benefits. Call today! 888-785-8376 ext. 8559.


LightSquared investors get SEC warning

Executives of the hedge fund that has invested heavily in LightSquared were notified Dec.8 that they may be investigated for possible civil securities-law violations, said published reports. The Wall Street Journal reported that Harbinger Capital Partners, the major financier of LightSquared and its GPS-jamming mobile satellite network, had disclosed that Philip Falcone and two other HCP board members received so-called Wells notices. Read more >>

Cincinnati warned against closing Blue Ash Airport

News reports that the city of Cincinnati may abandon its support of Blue Ash Airport—and possibly defy FAA warnings about use of funds from a sale—are meeting a strong response from AOPA and local pilots. “This is just wrong. Cincinnati made commitments, and now they’re backpedaling,” said Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of airport advocacy. “The aviation community is going to fight this.” Read more >>

Seaplane access to continue at Ross Lake

Seaplane access to continue at Ross Lake Seaplanes, historically one of the few means of access to a spectacular national recreation area “ringed by mountains and glaciers” in Washington state, will keep flying under a National Park Service plan for the Ross Lake National Recreation Area near Seattle. On Dec. 1, the National Park Service released its final general management plan and environmental impact statement for the recreation area, which is part of the North Cascades National Park Service Complex. Read more >>

AOPA Aircraft Financing Program offers NEW lower rates

Our goal is to get pilots into the aircraft of their dreams. To help make aircraft ownership more attainable we just lowered our rates to make monthly payments more affordable. For more information, or to have a representative call you to discuss financing, go to

Aircraft ‘luxury’ tax resurfaces in Washington State

As Washington State lawmakers grapple in a special session with another huge budget shortfall, numerous revenue ideas have surfaced from various groups and organizations to bring the budget into balance—including a “luxury tax” on aircraft. Two plans to tax aircraft have failed in the last two years in Washington state, where aircraft ownership is already among the costliest in the nation, and AOPA remained cautiously optimistic that lawmakers would not move forward with any new aviation taxes. Read more >>

Join the Airport Support Network today

Join the Airport Support Network today Ensuring the health and vitality of your airport is up to you—incompatible development and economic and political pressures can restrict your flying. Every day, more than 2,000 Airport Support Network (ASN) volunteers work with AOPA headquarters to help save their airports, but we need more. Below is a link to a list of the airports where an ASN volunteer could make a difference.

To nominate yourself or an associate to be a volunteer, visit AOPA Online.

To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit ASN Online.


Member Benefits

Bank of America helps member’s dream come true

As a first-time airplane buyer, AOPA member Tom Johnson had many questions and needed guidance. Debbie Edwards at Bank of America made the whole buying process easier. “I had no clue, didn’t know what steps to take, or where to begin. … I can’t tell you enough how Debbie made this purchase easy for me,” said Johnson. Of all the help Edwards gave, the thing that stuck out in Johnson’s memory is that she always called when she said she would and always did what she promised. Read more >>

Waco ornament celebrates holiday, aviation spirit

Waco ornament celebrates holiday, aviation spirit Get into the holiday spirit this year with a new limited-edition AOPA Holiday Ornament. The second in AOPA’s line of commemorative ornaments features an aircraft that embodies the spirit of aviation, a beautiful 1940 Waco. The Waco, offering its nostalgic glimpse of aviation times gone by, is certain to inspire you to share your most cherished aviation memories. Sure to add charm to any tree, the AOPA Holiday Ornament is now available at the AOPA Online Store. Remember, every purchase made at the AOPA Store benefits AOPA’s work preserving and protecting your freedom to fly.

FREE Video Tip! — Courses for Beginner to Pro!

Click for a Free Video Training Tip and find a course to achieve your next goal, or to make your flying safer and more rewarding. Not sure? Call us at 800-854-1001 and talk to one of our pilot training advisors.

AOPA 2012 Sweepstakes Husky

Water dog

The Tornado has a factory-installed float kit that makes it relatively easy for the AOPA 2012 Sweepstakes winner to install straight or amphibious floats. To get an idea of the adventures open to the pilot of a float-equipped Husky, AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Dave Hirschman recently went to Ryan Aviation at Flagler County Airport in central Florida. Read more >>

AOPA Career Opportunities

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We’re looking for a senior government analyst, director of corporate finance, manager of flight training programs, online product manager, AOPA Live producer/videojournalist, associate editor–Web/ ePilot, and aviation technical specialist. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.


Picture Perfect

AOPA’s online photo gallery allows you to upload your own aviation photography as well as view, rate, and comment on others’ photos. Your favorite aviation images from AOPA Pilot are still available online through this new gallery. Take a look, and submit your own photos!

Picture Perfect

Forums: What you would have done differently

A member is restarting the quest for a private pilot certificate, and would like some advice. In hindsight, what choices, timing, or preparation would you have done differently in your training? Join the discussion >>



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Rally GA

Check out user-submitted events from your region. To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. AOPA does not endorse the events listed below, nor have ePilot editors edited the submissions. AOPA assumes no responsibility for events listed.


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Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member who contacted our aviation services staff through the AOPA Pilot Information Center. Test your knowledge.


Question: I’m a commercial pilot with an instrument rating and was recently offered a right-seat position with a friend who has to make a long trip in a twin turboprop. She is fully qualified and legal to operate the twin in a single-pilot capacity; however, she is not a multiengine instructor and I do not yet hold a multiengine rating. I would hate to make this trip with her and not be able to log anything at all. Can I legally log any flight experience in this airplane?


Answer: You can log anything you want, but keep in mind that you must be able to delineate this time from other time that will be used toward a new rating, certificate, or currency. You can log this entire flight as flight experience; however, you cannot log the flight time as pilot in command or second in command.

Your logbook should allow you to log this under the Total Flight Time or Duration of Flight and Multiengine Land columns without recording it under PIC or SIC. With this in mind, you could also record the flight as complex, high-performance, actual instrument, cross-country, and night experience, if any of these items apply. You will also want to log a detailed description of exactly what you learned, and the systems you operated during the flight in your description entry in the logbook. Just remember, you cannot log this flight as PIC or SIC, nor can you log it as dual instruction received.


Find more information about logging time in AOPA’s subject report.


Got a question for our aviation services staff? The AOPA Pilot Information Center is a service available to all members as part of the annual dues. Call 800/USA-AOPA (800/872-2672), or email to [email protected].

Rally GA Become a member of the aviation organizations that support the way you fly. It’s a great way to meet others, learn more about the type of flying you enjoy, and protect your vocation or avocation.


Rally GA Remember to use your AOPA credit card to earn double points on select aviation purchases—every purchase supports general aviation at no additional cost to you! Don’t have the AOPA credit card? Apply today and show your passion for GA.


AOPA ePilot Team
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