Tag Archives: 40I

Airbus Partners With Uber For Helicopter Service

Airbus has partnered up with Uber to make it possible for travelers to book a helicopter using the Uber app, CEO Thomas Enders said at an industry conference on Sunday. The app will be the first step in a project that aims to “connect air transport to ground transport in an integrated way,” he said. Enders, speaking at the DLD (Digital-Life-Design) conference, in Munich, said the project is part of the new Airbus Ventures venture-capital fund, which launched on Friday with $150 million. The fund will invest in “promising, disruptive and innovative business opportunities around the globe,” Enders said. That could include flying cars.
Source: avwebAirbus Partners With Uber For Helicopter Service

Short Final

Last November, I transported 40 endangered sea turtles (stranded on Cape Cod) from the Boston area to a turtle rescue center center in Georgia. I put “transporting endangered sea turtles” in the comments section of my IFR flight plan and had two interesting exchanges on the trip. /// Providence Approach (PVD): “69 Tango, how’s your cargo doing?” … Me (after looking at them): “One is looking out the window through a hole in the box.” … PVD: “That’s awwwesome.” /// New York Approach (NY): “69 Tango, they normally don’t allow the routing you requested, but I really like what yer doin’ with dem sea turtles, so let me see what I can do.” … Me: “Roger. Thanks!” … NY: “69 Tango, you are cleared direct JFK; direct destination.” /// Happy to report all sea turtles made it to destination, recovered, and have been released to the ocean. — James Rose
Source: avwebShort Final

Heintz Brothers Buy Sam LSA

The Sam LSA, an all-metal low-wing tandem airplane that first flew in 2013, has been acquired by brothers Sebastien and Matt Heintz, owners of Zenith Aircraft (U.S.) and Zenair (Canada). In a news release issued Monday, the brothers said they are considering several different options for the airplane, including an LSA version, a kit, a quick-build kit, and a sport aerobatic configuration. The airplane was designed by Thierry Zibi, of Quebec, Canada, who built just one copy of the airplane and flew it to many U.S. air shows in search of buyers.
Source: avwebHeintz Brothers Buy Sam LSA

Niner-Niner Zulu: Some things in aviation are meant to be

A Cessna 205, showing its distinctive cowling. (Photo in public domain). https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ACessna205C-GHOR03.jpg

One of my earliest aviation memories is of a family holiday trip from our home in Illinois to Florida, spending the season with not one, but two, grandmothers and relations.

Any Christmas dinner for 30 or so members of the same family won’t be without its drama, and I’m sure that one didn’t surprise. But my memories of that December were more focused on the transportation: A Cessna 205 with an N-number ending 99Z.

My father was the pilot, and I was self-loading freight. Age-wise, I was in single digits, and certainly not tall enough see over the glareshield. (This was the mid-1960s, but I guess pillows and booster seats hadn’t been invented yet. Neither had GPS.)

I have no memory of the actual flights down and back, how long they took, where we stopped or how badly the weather sucked. But, boy, do I remember that N-number, and the aircraft type.

Fast forward 20 years. I’d earned my private, instrument and commercial, and was married with child. Both sets of in-laws were far enough away to make driving impractical, but the distance was Mama-bear right with a decent cross-country airplane.

I’d been in and out of various flying clubs, but at that point I was a renter, and my FBO’s offerings in equipment, scheduling, and expense just weren’t working for me, so I started looking for a better option.

I didn’t have a specific airframe in mind, and I don’t remember where I learned about a 205 being available. I had never flown one, but a local owner wasn’t flying his enough to make it worthwhile, and was selling shares of his.

As all-metal Cessnas go, the Model 205 isn’t that well-known. The type’s formal designation is 210-5(205), reflecting that it’s derived from the retractable Model 210 but with fixed gear. It was made in 1963 and 1964, before Cessna refined the concept into the Model 206.

It has a 260-hp Continental IO-470, and seats up to six people if the last two are small. Rear-cabin access is through a door much larger than standard. Think Skylane on steroids. Think the box your Skycatcher came in.

A Cessna 205, showing its distinctive cowling. (Photo in public domain). https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ACessna205C-GHOR03.jpg

A Cessna 205, showing its distinctive cowling. (Photo in public domain)

I contacted the owner and made arrangements to look at the airplane at a non-towered airport in the suburbs. It had a funky split switch for the navigation lights, allowing them to be on, off, or flashing, like a poor man’s strobe system. It also had something like 1,500 pounds of useful load.

Another interested pilot joined us and after all three of us poked and prodded the airplane a bit, we decided to take it for a quick flight. I had the most ratings and recent experience, so I got the left seat.

Shortly after takeoff, we discovered the engine oil dipstick hadn’t been secured during what passed for a preflight inspection. We knew this because there was oil on the windshield — a lot of it. Since there was an airport right behind us, I reduced power and we staggered back around the pattern and onto final. I had to stick my head out the open pilot’s side window to see the runway.

I got it over the numbers, but ended up dropping the old girl in from 30 or 40 feet high. One of my worst-ever landings. An easy 7.0 on the Richter scale. But a go-around wasn’t happening.

We didn’t break anything and after adding a couple of quarts of oil, the airplane could be used again. (By the way, the oil was relatively fresh and clear, but the slipstream disturbed it, like ripples on a pond, distorting the view and making that openable side window my new best friend.)

I should have taken that flight as a sign this particular airplane wasn’t the best solution to my dilemma. But the idea of flying the same type of airplane as on that long-ago trip was stronger. And it won.

A Cessna 205A at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport near Denver. (Photo in public domain). https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ACessnaT2105A.jpg

A Cessna 205A at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport near Denver. (Photo in public domain)

The owner and I, plus a couple of other pilots, worked out a club agreement and started flying the airplane. Soon, a club member took it on a business trip to the Midwest. Of course, the engine broke somewhere in Missouri and the airplane was grounded a thousand miles away.

Perhaps knowing he had us by the delicates, the local mechanic wanted real money to put it back together. After some indecision and negotiation, the original owner airlined out with some tools and parts, helped hang a cylinder on it, and flew home.

And he almost made it. While performing a dusk landing at home plate after a non-stop flight from Missouri, he reportedly caught a wingtip on a tree near the runway. He was uninjured, thankfully.

I have no clue what really happened, but there were no trees within a wingspan of the runway. There was enough damage that the insurance company totaled the airplane and paid the claim.

I had managed to put several hours on the airplane before it flew to Missouri — all my subsequent landings were better than the first, by the way — so the whole thing was basically a wash. I got back my “investment” and never saw the airplane again, though it was repaired and is still on the registry. The club was disbanded and we all went our separate ways.

Looking back on that experience, I learned a lot about who gets to do the preflight, and about airplane ownership.

And I’ll always have a soft spot for 205s. That holiday trip in 99Z helped plant in my young mind how personal airplanes can be used, and a generation later it was a cool idea to try using another 205 for the same basic purpose.

The idea wasn’t bad, but its execution was imperfect. Some things just aren’t meant to be.

Niner-Niner Zulu gets a lot of the credit (or blame) for getting me into this aviation thing. Thankfully, it’s still registered, also.

Source: http://generalaviationnews.comNiner-Niner Zulu: Some things in aviation are meant to be

Fourth building at Air Force museum to open in June

DAYTON, Ohio – The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force’s new $40.8 million fourth building, which will include aircraft such as SAM 26000 (Air Force One) and the only remaining XB-70 Valkyrie, will open to the public on June 8, 2016.

The 224,000-square-foot building, which was privately financed by the Air Force Museum Foundation, will house more than 70 aircraft, missiles, and space vehicles in four new galleries:- Presidential, Research and Development, Space and Global Reach, along with three science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) Learning Nodes.

Construction of the building began in July 2014 and is expected to be completed this month by the Columbus office of Turner Construction Company and overseen by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Louisville District.

The museum’s restoration division is currently moving aircraft into the building and assembling other artifacts for display, such as the massive Titan IVB space launch vehicle and satellite booster rocket weighing 96 tons.

Although the building will open to the public June 8, special weekend activities and demonstrations are being planned to continue celebrating the building opening, June 11-12. More information on these events will be released as it becomes available.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 360 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about 1 million visitors from around the world come to the museum.

Source: http://generalaviationnews.comFourth building at Air Force museum to open in June