Fly Your Dog?

A key consideration for your next Cessna 140 modified bush plane:

Can you fit the hound?

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Image care of Aaron Bartels

So you purchased a 1947 Cessna 140, put some bush tires on it, and your therapist feels that this is a good direction (and step!) for you.

Bravo.  You eschew “Burning Man” for Wrangell Inlet.  You’re my kinda peeps.

But before we get too excited [whilst thinking of taildragger upgrades], let’s look at the basic needs of the new aircraft owner, facing a mild midlife crisis:

Continue reading Fly Your Dog?

Boeing’s 787, Batteries and Growing Up Fast

787-battery2-c-NTSBThe problem with new technology is that …. well… just so damn new all the time.  New, as in, you don’t recognize that battery running down the street.  Even though you thought you knew what a battery was, you actually don’t know enough about science stuff, like chemistry (and physics things, like ions) to realize you are using a new or dangerous battery that has little compartments (cells) that can actually fall off a potential energy cliff, set fire to their neighbors, and give you a fire, that, well… not even a certified aircraft can put out. Continue reading Boeing’s 787, Batteries and Growing Up Fast

Do Glass Cockpits Make Us Safer?

The topic of “does glass make us safer?”  caught my eye while reading this month’s BCA magazine.  (A related podcast here.) In the intelligence section there was a blurb on how the NTSB can’t correlate any improvement in safety stats with increased use of and prevalence of glass cockpits. This is a significant lesson for humans regarding our use of and approach to better technology: We are a greedy species.  We take, but find it hard to give. Continue reading Do Glass Cockpits Make Us Safer?

Hawker Beechcraft Filing Rumors

Well, it happens to the best of us.  Planning and growth turn out to be two separate things.  In the case of Hawker Beechcraft you can likely point to the declining cachet of having your own jet.  Courting smaller stuff (King Air buyers) and military prospects is a good risk mitigation strategy, but it isn’t where the real money was.   Continue reading Hawker Beechcraft Filing Rumors

The 2012 Hawker Review

Well, it’s that time again.  The Hawker Review gets some love every couple of years and we’re making it available for a while at no charge for the benefit of Hawker 800XP owners (as well as older and newer) and for yet to be Hawker owners.  The big thing to note this year is what is happening to a swath of about 500 serial numbers that wear the Hawker 800XP monicker.   Continue reading The 2012 Hawker Review

Makin’ Love to Learjets

This thirsty little Lear 25 is hooking up to tanker because, well … it has short legs.  But let’s not forget it’s offspring – the Lear 35.  Now old enough to be your somewhat annoying son in law, like your son in law, it has also made its mark on the family.

Built in the late 70’s, the Lear 20 and 30 series are actually one of the longest running light jet rockstars of charter and the private jet world.  For the 20 series one reason – amazing design and wing.   Continue reading Makin’ Love to Learjets

Hawker Series Aircraft Review Update 2012

The 2012 version of the Hawker review is just about done.  We don’t have too many major changes to report this year other than the pending Netjets dumping of their series and which serial numbers this will affect most adversely.   All in all it has been a brutal 4 years for the type, though the XPR upgrade for the later models proves hopeful for the charter management and fractional owners.  Continue reading Hawker Series Aircraft Review Update 2012

Turboprop Evolution and Amortization

Perhaps no one has a true sense of what amortization means more than Pratt and Whitney did once upon a time.  When it comes to turboprop aircraft sales, someone was betting long at Pratt.

Sure your accountant will tell you what it means for your jet or turboprop vs. an expense, but how about someone who amortized a really big number over a long period of time?  Well… the PT 6 is that story.

Continue reading Turboprop Evolution and Amortization

Overhaul and Hot Section

As someone wise once said, it is the *&^%$ little things that kill you.  With airplanes… it isn’t so much the big bills you get.  It is the thousand here and there you didn’t see coming and have a hard time measuring.

Entire ecosystems thrive off you and your plane.

A child will go to a better school because you paid a tad more for Jet-A than you should have.  You are the unknowing philanthropist. Continue reading Overhaul and Hot Section