Or a Screw in your wing?
Jim Odenwaldt -Elliott Aviation Aircraft Sales Manager
Last month we touched on technical expertise and use of available resources during pre-buy (otherwise known as survey). We have all had bumps in the road as we move deals towards completion. Sometimes, it can be tough to get sellers and buyers to agree on price and terms when the pre-buy list is distributed. Here is a short story illustrating how the use of these skills assisted in delivering the best possible outcome.
Earlier this year, we had a light jet at an OEM service center for a pre-buy. It had come directly from a well-known non-OEM service center facility where a complete inspection had just been conducted for the seller, based on the calendar requirements of the maintenance program, prior to the deal being structured. The seller assumed that no major issues would be found as this inspection had just been completed.
At the OEM service center, during the pre-buy, however, a section of the leading edges was removed for a detailed inspection of the area. It was discovered a countersunk screw that was ¼" too long had inadvertently been installed in the corner of the panel. As this fastener was headed toward being flush on the outside, it was gouging into the structure underneath. The damage was beyond the allowable percentage of skin thickness. The service center had to call OEM Engineering to devise a repair, which could take up to three weeks at an undetermined cost. They did offer a 30 flight hour waiver so we had the option to move the aircraft to P&I, the next scheduled stop after closing. Either way, it had to be fixed.
The non-OEM shop that conducted the inspection sent representatives and ultimately took responsibility for the improper fastener. They agreed to cover the cost of the repairs but found it unacceptable to wait three weeks to get a repair scheme from OEM Engineering with no cost estimate. The buyer was willing to close and have the repair made during P&I but the company who offered to pay the bill, understandably, wasn’t going to offer their checkbook carte blanche.
I went to the buyer and presented the idea of having an independent DER devise a repair procedure and take the aircraft back to the non-OEM facility to conduct the repairs. This would accelerate the schedule and allow them to fix their own mistake. Thankfully, they agreed! We finished the inspection, settled the bill and had the aircraft towed back across the airport. The DER was able to quickly formulate a plan, and the work was completed in about two weeks. We were very fortunate all parties were very reasonable. Everyone proceeded with integrity and patience so this one was able to get done.
Jim Odenwaldt has extensive flying and technical experience with all Beechcraft products and sales expertise with all models of Hawker/Beech, Citation and Gulfstream. After graduating from Embry-Riddle in 1989, Jim worked as a CFI and maintenance technician. While with American Beechcraft Company, he was responsible for aircraft sales in the mid-Atlantic region. In addition to his ATP, Jim is an A&P and type rated in the Beechcraft Premier.
Elliott Aviation is a second-generation, family-owned business aviation company offering a complete menu of high quality products and services including aircraft sales, avionics service & installations, aircraft maintenance, accessory repair & overhaul, paint and interior, charter and aircraft management. Serving the business aviation industry nationally and internationally, they have facilities in Moline, IL, Des Moines, IA, and Minneapolis, MN. The company is a member of the Pinnacle Air Network, National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), National Air Transportation Association (NATA), and National Aircraft Resale Association (NARA).
This year was my first trip to Oshkosh for EAA AirVenture. I knew going in that there would be too much to see in one week – especially when I was seeking great stories to take in and put to print. But volume wasn’t my goal – a rich experience was what I needed. And on Thursday, I received the richest experience that many people don’t – even experienced pilots. I took my first ride in a seaplane!
I rode out to the Seabase, wondering how many patrons have never set foot in this area of Oshkosh. After all, it is a bit of a drive – about 20 minutes by bus (free to get there, $3.00 to return), and since the warbirds and airshows are all right there and easily accessible, the temptation to "go with what you know" is strong.
But once I emerged from the walking trail from the parking lot and campground to the base itself, I couldn’t help but wonder what those that have overlooked it know what they’re missing! The lush green land overlooking Lake Winnebago exudes a naturally relaxing atmosphere. The shelter house, built to handle maybe a couple hundred visitors at once, plus a giant fire pit on the shore still smoldering, reminded me of many of my scouting experiences. If Henry David Thoreau was alive today, this is where he’d hang his hat.
While there were docks around, all were in use. So when pilot Jeremy Williams of Tubreaux Aviation (pronounced "Two Bros") landed and floated up in his 1959 P-18 Super Cub, I shucked my shoes and socks and waded on out. It’s no easy trick for a large guy like me to slide into the rear seat, but I wasn’t deterred! Once I was strapped in and headset was in place, we glided out into the lake, accelerated, and off the water a moment later.
Now I’m not a big fan of heights (I know, I picked an odd profession then, didn’t I?), but Williams’ skill on the stick made the ride as smooth as glass, and I never once felt uncomfortable. He offered to let me try my hand, but I was enjoying myself way too much to change it up. As with anything that’s truly great, the ride was over way too soon, and I climbed down the float back into the water.
Shortly thereafter, I sat down with Wyche Coleman, co-owner of Tubreaux Aviation, to find out more about what makes them tick. I was surprised to find that giving fluffy journalist seaplane rides was just one thing they do!
"Luke Lambard and I built a hanger together. I was constantly being approached by people wanting to learn how to fly, since there wasn’t a place in Shreveport at that time training for licenses. So rather than sending people to Dallas for instruction, we decided to branch out. Jeremy was our first instructor – now we’re up to five full-time instructors."
Coleman and Lambert didn’t stop there, however. "When crew chief Dax Wanless expressed a desire to open his own maintenance shop, we saw the need and made the investment. Now we have three full-time mechanics with 20+ years of experience as an A&P/IA, we’re seeking a fourth, and looking to add avionics as well. We recently added acquisitions and sales to services offered, although we’ve been doing this for years already. There is no other place in Northern Louisiana that can teach you to fly, help you buy your aircraft, hanger and maintain it, all in one place!"
Coleman, an ophthalmologist by trade, has been coming to Oshkosh for a while, first flying there as a part of the 2003 Stars of Tomorrow (all pilots under 30 at that time). Now his brother Kevin, at 23, was flying in the airshow for his second year.
Once our conversation had ended, I wondered around to get a few photos, take some more video, change batteries in the camera, etc. – anything I could think to do to remain at the Seabase just a little longer. When we return in 2014, you’ll likely find me there again!
Check out the video of the Super Cub coming in for a landing, from the open door cockpit!
180 degree panoramic view of the Seabase in Oshkosh, 2013
Only in California can you have a brand new, yet vastly experienced FBO. Cutter Aviation/Bob Hoover Jet Center, founded in 1928 by William Cutter, just opened their newest facility in Van Nuys (VNY) in July.
I spoke with manager Tom Magglos, a veteran ATP rated corporate pilot with five years of FBO management experience, about what makes this facility special. "I believe that the combination of the decades of experience of Cutter Aviation, plus the involvement of aviation pioneer Bob Hoover speaks volumes about what to expect!"
In addition, Magglos was proud to be the Piper sales and HondaJet sales and service centers for the region (forthcoming).
by Keely Mick
Essentially, the ideal way for one to live their life is to be economical, realistic and invest their hard earned money wisely. When life throws at you opportunities to travel, the average American will automatically choose to go by way of airline: Fact. But, why is this the case? For a lack of better reasoning we will say this; people believe that airline travel is cost-effective, statistically safe and highly effective. However, as aviators, we must stop and question this. What viable percentage of those American people are aware that there are other ways? Do they know that airplane travel does NOT always entail large airports, waiting in lines, highly invasive security checks or missing baggage?
With airline travel comes many burdens that are avoidable; simple as that.
I’m here to tell you about a different way to go about things; a newer way. Diamond Aircraft recently developed a program known as DiamondShare with hopes of making flying make sense again. This dynamic new program has been designed for simplicity, in turn making the economics of personal aviation sensible, and a real possibility. DiamondShare was inspired and created to provide all pilots with a more affordable option in order to have ownership and/or access to an amazing new and modern aircraft. The secret is "sharing".
Recently I was given an opportunity to meet with one of the top advisors for the DiamondShare program, John Armstrong. John broke this down so well for me, I was instantly on board, what a fantastic program this is! I can’t think of a better promotion to offer a new or a young pilot fresh on the market for a single engine aircraft. Everyone wants the hottest items on the market be that technology, automobiles, boats or aircraft. "Yes I want the Garmin G1000, yes I want the all glass cockpit, and yes I want the auto-pilot feature, but let’s be realistic; the hottest aircraft on the market certainly won’t be the cheapest. This brings us right back where we started; I want to be economical, I want to be realistic, and I want to invest my money wisely.
So check this out, did you know that on an annual average, most aircraft owners will only use their planes 80 - 100 hours per year? That equates to roughly 5% of the total hours in a working year, excluding weekends of course. Obviously, that scenario is less than ideal and it’s certainly not economical or wise. Not to mention, along with aircraft ownership comes numerous fixed costs that are essentially inevitable; including insurance costs, hangar fees as well as avionics subscriptions. So why would anyone invest so much money in the purchase of a brand new, top of the line aircraft? The answer is simple; most people wouldn’t.
Due to these factors, the average buyer on the market for an aircraft (especially in an economic crisis) is going to "settle" for an older, more outdated model; if for no other reason, simply to justify their investment. DiamondShare wants to change this. With the Share and Save Program, the new owner can now leverage his/her assets while radically reducing their cost of ownership. The owner still maintains full control and as a bonus, this usually enhances tax advantages.
Moving right along, the aircraft that I am discussing is the Diamond DA40 XLS; a fantastic and beautiful, completely state of the art aircraft. Say you are a student pilot (such as myself); perhaps you are not seeking aircraft ownership right away. Nonetheless, depending on how much a person enjoys the freedom of flight, how much would that person realistically invest every single month on aircraft rental and fees? Aside from that, your local FBO only has so many training aircraft available for hourly rent; this doesn’t allow much capacity for personal travel. $135.00 per hour seems tolerable; until you reach 8 or 9 hours that is. But what other choice is there?
That’s it; you have just discovered the reasoning behind the creation of the DiamondShare program. Suddenly, the brand new Diamond DA40 XLS seems relatively affordable and certainly obtainable. Whether you are seeking full or part time ownership, if $995.00 per month is a budget that you can justify for fractional ownership, I would like to invite you to visit www.diamondshare.com
In conclusion, the DiamondShare program was inspired and created to provide pilots from every walk of life a brand new opportunity to make a gratifying investment. Whether you seek full ownership or just easy and convenient access to an amazing and modern aircraft, DiamondShare has potential for you. By pooling your love for aviation with other flight-goers and literally sharing the wealth, you are now capable to own the latest and greatest, hottest new aircraft on the market; the sky is literally the limit!
View full article - www.aero-news.net
Aircraft Makes Its 1st Journey 'On Wheels'
||Airbus has successfully completed the main structural assembly and system connection of A350 XWB ‘MSN-001’ – the first flight-test aircraft. The aircraft is shown here on its wheels for the very first time moving out of the main assembly hall (Station 40) at the recently inaugurated “Roger Béteille” A350 XWB Final Assembly Line in Toulouse. It then entered the adjacent indoor ground test station (Station 30).
The assembly work performed in Station 40 included the successful electrical power-on of the aircraft's entire fuselage and wings. Soon work in Station 30 will start by testing the aircraft's hydraulic system, followed by the full electric and hydraulic power-on of the aircraft which will be completed by around the end of the year. This will mark the start of several weeks of comprehensive functional system testing.
After the A350 XWB MSN-001 exits station 30, the aircraft will go through a series of extensive production and certification / development tests, be painted and have its engines installed. It will then be delivered to the flight-line and be readied for its first flight in mid-2013.
(Image provided by Airbus)