Saturday, March 31, 2007

Three More

Eclipse Aviation Delivers Three Eclipse 500 VLJs to DayJet

New era in aviation kicks off with arrival of first VLJs for use in commercial fleet operations

ALBUQUERQUE, NM — March 31, 2007 —

Eclipse Aviation, manufacturer of the world’s first very light jet (VLJ), today announced the delivery of three Eclipse 500 aircraft to DayJet at the Eclipse headquarters in Albuquerque, New Mexico. DayJet is Eclipse Aviation’s largest customer with firm orders for 239 Eclipse 500s and options for an additional 70 aircraft over the next two years. The company, which is the first commercial jet service to take delivery of a VLJ, will offer point-to-point “Per-Seat, On-Demand” services to regional communities.

“As our population and business centers become more and more dispersed, air travel is more critical than ever to the health and growth of our regional communities and businesses,” said Vern Raburn, president and CEO of Eclipse Aviation. “We are proud to be playing a role in expanding the future of air transportation by delivering the Eclipse 500, the first of a new generation of VLJs that can quickly move people from point to point across our nation. It is exciting to be a partner with DayJet as they take the next step in this journey.

”The aircraft delivered today will be used to train pilots at Eclipse’s facilities in Albuquerque. DayJet will put its fleet of Eclipse 500s into commercial operation in the second quarter of this year.

“Today is a major milestone for DayJet, as we begin to take delivery of our Eclipse 500 jets,” said Ed Iacobucci, president and CEO of DayJet. “Like many great innovations in history, there is a confluence of hardware and software advances that together, promise radical change and benefit to thousands of regional business travelers.”

Thanks to hotdog for the late breaking news from ABQ!

35 comments:

a37pilot said...

Where are you BD5 Believer?

I guess you win the over/under since they slipped those last 3 in today. I think you said they would deliver 5 in the first quarter. Now if they can only get some of them to actually leave ABQ, then Eclipse can get on with all that darkening the skies with VLJ's that I keep hearing so much about.

Ken Meyer said...

And, along with the delivery of three airplanes, Eclipse released the new DRAFT AFM, Section 5 (Performance). It shows some very nice improvements over the interim model performance. I'll post some numbers here later on. It looks to me like the plane will meet or beat all of its performance guarantees.

A hearty congratulations to Eclipse Aviation!

Ken

mirage00 said...

Yeeeeehaaaaaaaaaa!!!!

EclipseOwner387 said...

Hey,

Where has bambazonke gone? Just curious....

Airtaxi has been quieter as well.

Hmmmmm....

Is Eclipse starting to quiet the naysayers somewhat?

Frank Castle is history.

What gives?

Ken you are winning!!! EB, you should come back and enjoy this victory!!!

:-)

Ken Meyer said...

Gunner, too, seems to have run out of ammunition :)

What will this blog be like after the first 100 planes are happily flying all around the country?

Ken

lumar said...

Oh Ken,you mean:

...the first 100 planes are happily flying all around the country?...

There are maybe five E500 'delivred', but not 'flying' ! Do we call this creation of hangarqueens ??!!

twinpilot said...

Can we assume all three aircraft have a Certificate of Airworthiness? I guess that depends on what the definition of "is" is. Or, I mean, what the definition of "delivered" is.
Now all of you naysayers will have to eat crow. This really proves that E-clips is up to a delivery rate of 3 per day.

Eric said...

What are the limitations on these aircraft? Are they going to be used for training the DayJet guys or can they be used for revenue flights? Will they have to hold off on the revenue flying with these until they are modified?

EclipseOwner387 said...

Eric,

My understanding is training.

Ken Meyer said...

...and now they'll have an IFR-approved GPS system onboard with Garmin's recent announcement. After all these months, Garmin finally got the TSO C129a IFR approval for their popular handheld 396/496 GPS units. Read about it here!

Ken

Black Tulip said...

Ken,

Ah yes, the long awaited IFR approval for the Garmin handhelds... Follow your link and just press the button for activation information and your worries are over.

No matter what, the three jets delivered yesterday could be used for training. With the addition of visual systems they would make excellent flight training devices. Add motion systems and you have three simulators, hopefully Level D.

In any case with the altitude of Albuquerque being much less than 24,000 feet, they should be able to fly.

Black Tulip

bill e. goat said...

Ken-
Good one!
(I bit the hook).

cherokee driver said...

Eclipse Aviation fully intends to deliver 38 aircraft that do not meet their performance guarantees even though supposedly they have a fix in the works. That is bad enough. Eclipse Aviation fully intends to deliver 100 aircraft with obsolete avionics that will never fully function. Eclipse Aviation fully expects their loyal customers to go along with this charade. Is this what you guys are happy about? I suppose if you were silly enough to pay a premium for an early position on the secondary market you might have to go along with this scam so you at least end up with something. I think if it was me, I would take my lawyer along at delivery day and make them deliver what I paid for. You guys realize Eclipse Aviation is your selected vendor for VLJ aircraft don't you? We all know what Vern does with a selected vendor that doesn't deliver what was promised. Seems like a double standard if he expects loyal customers to take delivery of non-functional aircraft. How many inop placards are you guys willing to accept on a brand new plane? Maybe a delivered airplane is a win for Eclipse until it's your turn to take delivery. It's just somebody else's problem.

JetProp Jockey said...

Does anyone know how DayJet got to the front of the delivery line? I am sure that they did not make their committments that early in the program. Are there any unhappy depositors who are being pushed back by providing these early DayJet deliveries?

Metal Guy said...

Few comments:

1) Why are they keeping them tethered to ABQ? Was #3 actually delivered to the field, or are they all just barely good enough to hobble by with a token “deliveries”? Where is #3 – what airport? I want to see a picture of the airplane comfortably tucked away in someone else’s hanger before I’m convinced any these “deliveries” are real – excuse the skeptic in me. Sounds like a marketing stunt.

2) “A TSO has been issued for the Avio NG system”. Say what? A TSO authorization cannot be issued until the system is final. Are they actually done already? Sounds like a marketing stunt.

3) Jet Complete is being completely restructured – oops, did we make those promises? Sounds like it was, indeed, just a marketing stunt.

4) They have made “significant progress on weight reductions throughout the aircraft”. Doesn’t that imply they are going to have to make significant modifications to the design that will significantly impact TC certification of the existing configuration and a huge retrofit effort to push these back into the ‘A’ models? Sounds like a marketing stunt.

5) Lots of ice around lately – where is FIKI? Are they just waiting until summer so they can say the weather is not cooperating? Sounds like a marketing stunt.

6) Lets see – another week - $7,000,000.00 lost forever; 3 sales at about, what, $150,000 profit each, that’s, $6,700,000.00 more in the hole. Until they get into something like 50’s per month, the ship is still sinking rapidly. (Then they get to start paying the vendors that they owe millions to and have not been paying - yes Ken, I have the facts). Whole thing sounds like a marketing stunt.

Black Tulip said...

Metal Guy said:

"Then they get to start paying the vendors that they owe millions to and have not been paying..."

I recently attended a meeting with several aviation folks who are 'in the know.' Rumors about Eclipse abound. Got the impression that Avidyne is very glad to have split the blanket with Eclipse but would like to be paid. Also got the impression that the simulator is not very far along - a critical training requirement. Just rumors you know.

Black Tulip

Bambazonke said...

OK eo387 you invited my comments so here they are-;

This latest news from ABQ is unfortunately more of the same...

Respectfully a couple of points;

Eclipse has yet to deliver on a tangible promise. The release of the draft Section 5 is nothing more than a sham, I doubt this document will get past the FAA. There are too many inaccuracies in the data, and claims that cannot be met, like the maths for the climb rates - Look at any of the altitudes climbed to and divide this by the minutes to get there and the numbers don't jive - eg. 30000 feet, ROC=1102, time=16.8. 30000/16.8=1785, but the book says the plane is climbing at 1102 fpm??

This is not the only example of this kind of ABQ maths in section 5, anyone using this kind of data for flight planning purposes is going to come up short.

I took the time to load this garbage (draft Chapter 5 data) into Jepp FliteStar Corporate version, did a flight profile on the aircraft and it can't do 1000 miles, standard day, still wind landing with 370 lbs of fuel for reserve, which I consider below min fuel for a twin jet, and certainly not enough for NBAA reserves.

The descent data is too aggressive for this plane, EAC are giving an avg descent rate of 2992 from FL-410. At the lower altitudes this is going to exceed the Mmo of the plane, not to mention what will happen in the mid 30's where the Mmo is 0.64.

The Eclipse fan club on this blog don't point out that the plane needs to get down to 4500 lbs to make the 370 knots that is touted as the TAS achieved on the aircraft. Assuming an average plane has an empty weight of 3600 lbs (I think it will be heavier than this) and your load promised of 710 lbs, and the fact that you need to be at FL-300 to achieve this number, there is no practical way this plane will ever see that kind of TAS with 4 people on board, because you will need to be at FL-300 with 190 lbs of fuel total, so who is likely to feel comfortable landing with this kind of fuel?

If you were to want to fly at max speed the max amount of fuel you could carry would be 400 lbs of fuel, with a 200 lb pilot, but then we would need to place ballast in the seat that would eat up some of that fuel, so here we are back to mickey mouse calculations...Not to mention the range penalty that there would be operating at FL-300.

Now that is for TAS of 370 kts, KKA, is touting 372 kts, well this is even worse, we are down to 4000 lbs, which means a 200 lbs pilot and 200 lbs of fuel, where are you going to go at these weights and limitations?


To me this kind of trickery to make the promises is incredibly hollow and disingenuous. Either the plane flys to the specs or it can't, trying to make it fit the promises with this kind of chicanery is alas, more of the same...

EclipseBlogger said...

Bamba-Flunk said... This is not the only example of this kind of ABQ maths in section 5, anyone using this kind of data for flight planning purposes is going to come up short.

The only thing coming up short is you. What kind of pilot reads the chart for Rate of Climb and interprets that ROC at 30,000 feet to be a constant rate from sea level. The chart shows the rate AT 30,000. It took roughly 4 minutes to climb from 25,000 to 30,000 feet. Therefore the chart is correct. It's your math and lack of understanding that is missing the mark. Maybe you should brush up on your basic ground school skills.

The same goes for your speed assumptions. The chart shows 368 kts at 35,000 at 5500 lbs, 369 kts at 5000 lbs. Close enough for me. You are really reaching to call that a failure, and slight of hand. Also, the 370 kts spec number has a tolerance of +/-2%, it is not an absolute number. But without looking at a graph we only have the data points to look at.

Bamba-Flunk said... Now that is for TAS of 370 kts, KKA, is touting 372 kts, well this is even worse, we are down to 4000 lbs, which means a 200 lbs pilot and 200 lbs of fuel, where are you going to go at these weights and limitations?

Now you are the one being disingenuous. Eclipse said that they saw a data point at 372 kts, but that they were not changing the spec or AFM to show that.

Bamba-Flunk said... To me this kind of trickery to make the promises is incredibly hollow and disingenuous. Either the plane flys to the specs or it can't, trying to make it fit the promises with this kind of chicanery is alas, more of the same...

To me this kind of trickery to make blog statements is incredibly hollow and disingenuous. Either the blog poster states the correct specs or they shouldn't post, trying to make the post fit the assumptions with this kind of chicanery is alas, more of the same...

Ken Meyer said...

A lot of errors in that message, Bamba. EB got some. Here's another:

"I took the time to load this garbage (draft Chapter 5 data) into Jepp FliteStar Corporate version, did a flight profile on the aircraft and it can't do 1000 miles, standard day, still wind landing with 370 lbs of fuel for reserve,"

You must have done it wrong. I did it in Flitesoft. You can fly KSAN to KDFW (1015 nm) at FL410, highspeed cruise, no wind and land with 481 lbs of fuel reserve (and a block speed of 321 knots, which is pretty doggone good). Fuel efficiency is .81 nm per pound, which is nothing short of amazing for a jet.

And another:

"The descent data is too aggressive for this plane, EAC are giving an avg descent rate of 2992 from FL-410. At the lower altitudes this is going to exceed the Mmo of the plane, not to mention what will happen in the mid 30's where the Mmo is 0.64."

They give you the KEAS and mach numbers--a 3000 fpm descent doesn't exceed either Vmo or Mmo; it's right there in the chart, if you look for it.

Ken

Ken Meyer said...

Small correction...actually, the block fuel efficiency came out .84 nm per pound of fuel for the hypothetical 1015 nm flight. That's even better.

At highspeed cruise, midweight, ISA, the plane gets just under 1 nm for every pound of fuel burned. Power back to longrange cruise and that figure jumps to just over 1 nm per pound of fuel. That's impressive.

Ken

a37pilot said...

Jetprop Jockey said:

"Does anyone know how DayJet got to the front of the delivery line? I am sure that they did not make their committments that early in the program. Are there any unhappy depositors who are being pushed back by providing these early DayJet deliveries?"

Good point JPJ. IMO Dayjet needs to take a delivery as badly as Elcipse needs to make one. They propbably have almost as many nervous investors as Eclipse. Until we see an airplane delivered, some pilots type rated and the airplane fly further than the traffic pattern at ABQ, it all just smoke and mirrors.

Gunner said...

"Gunner, too, seems to have run out of ammunition :)"

Don't bet on it. It's just that I'm, well..... bored, Ken. Your logic is reminiscent of grade school and your interactions reminiscent of Junior High.

There really is very little sense in trying to correct the statements of someone who continually confuses future promises with current reality; especially when guys like CWMOR grind your PR Pronouncements to dust so systematically. To wit:
"Hey, our team's promising a touchdown next quarter".
"No kidding. Then we're already winning, yes?"

And while you ARE most prolific, I'm truly enjoying the Baghdad Bob show and haven't much felt need for direct interaction, thanks. Please do Carry On.

As to the deliveries of 3 new planes......ummm, so what? Can anyone use them for any purpose other than marketing hype? Of course not.

Gunner

EclipseBlogger said...

Jetprop Jockey said... "Does anyone know how DayJet got to the front of the delivery line?

In all fairness, DayJet has been around since the early days of Eclipse. Although they were not involved since day #1, it was made very clear from the first day that Eclipse was accepting deposits that positions in the delivery schedule were being reserved for company aircraft, fleet orders, Bidder's Club, early investors, etc. Most customers do not have a problem with Dayjet receiving priority positions, so neither should you. This is the way business works, and nothing was withheld if you asked the questions to the proper people in the company.

Black Tulip said...

How many remember the Paris Jet?

Could this discussion be about the twenty-first century equivalent?

Black Tulip

Ken Meyer said...

gunner wrote,
"As to the deliveries of 3 new planes......ummm, so what? Can anyone use them for any purpose other than marketing hype? Of course not."


Oh Rich is back alright. More inaccuracies and misstatements. The DayJet planes can and will be used for training precisely as Ed Iacobucci said--

"Our first four aircraft we take delivery of will be training aircraft, as those aircraft will serve as the means for our pilots to obtain a type rating in. After that, as more aircraft are delivered, we'll use those for our customers."

If you're coming back Rich, perhaps you'll make a little more effort to keep your statements reasonably accurate. There are plenty of other people around here posting things that are simply wrong. The blog really doesn't need you to add to that.

Ken

Lloyd said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lloyd said...

Jetprop Jock,

Eclipse allowed for fleet buyer positions early in the program. Customers have actually moved up in line. My position has moved from 372 to 312. Right were I would like to be in the production schedule, and I'm not complaining.

Black Tulip said...

Lloyd,

You should have been complaining for about three years. What have you been flying in the interim?

Black Tulip

Lloyd said...

Black

I fly Pilatus PC-12's. This is an addition to my current aircraft. I love the PC-12, and I hope to like the Eclipse as much for different missions.

Lloyd

Black Tulip said...

Lloyd,

I hear the Pilatus PC-12 is an excellent aircraft. Their sales and safety record is enviable. I visited the factory years ago and found it beautiful and very Swiss.

I hope the Eclipse meets your expectations.

Black Tulip

Eric said...

Ken

.84 nm/lb of fuel is damn good for a jet if you consider all jets equal. That works out to 1.19 lbs of fuel per nautical mile. Spreading that over 6 passengers (we'll consider the crew to be passengers) we get 0.2 lbs/nm/passenger... pretty good.

Yesterday I was enjoying a cruise at FL350 and decided to get some numbers. We were getting about .15 nm/lb... yeah, it sucks for the airplane. However, that worked out to 0.133 lbs/nm/passenger (not counting the crew as passengers) and we were doing around 450 KTAS. Now if we had slowed to 370 KTAS we would have made better numbers, but ATC would have bitched.

My point is that while the EA500 my get great mileage for the aircraft, it can't hold a candle to a larger aircraft. Phenomenal for the airplane, but not-so-great for the passengers.

Just think what the EA500 could have achieved with a larger wingspan instead of tip-tanks... maybe even some sporty winglets too!

Eric said...

On the scorecard of aircraft deliveries Eclipse is beating Cessna. However, I don't really consider delivering an aircraft that has to be modified at a later date to be a very good business practice. In fact it's pretty crummy. I appreciate that Cessna has just waited until whatever the problems are with the Garmin system get worked out to start delivering more than just their leaseback unit.

At least we know that Cessna's 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc. deliveries will be a fully-functional aircraft.

By the way... if you live in the Northeast (or anywhere other than ABQ) and take delivery of your EA500, who pays for the fuel to fly it back to ABQ for the aero mods and AVIO NG installation? Is the fuel and per hour cost for coming back to the nest included when they say they'll retrofit the aircraft at their cost?

Frank Castle said...

"Frank Castle is history.".

No, I'm not.

Frank Castle said...

"On the scorecard of aircraft deliveries Eclipse is beating Cessna. However, I don't really consider delivering an aircraft that has to be modified at a later date to be a very good business practice."

Hence, I am content to wait in the wings, and wait for your cries of "foul" before you finally visit your favorite proctologist for a soothing ointment.

"At least we know that Cessna's 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc. deliveries will be a fully-functional aircraft."

You will SO need it.

Chkntrkr said...

One of the pilot forums has a thread running about the DayJet deliveries. Here is the most recent comment: "I would hardly call the "things" that were delivered to dayjet "airplanes"... Eclipse is so full of crap and so far behind the 8-ball that the deliveries to dayjet were not even certified and had stripped interiors. But...it is legal to give instruction in "experimental" planes."

Is there any substance to this remark? Do these 3 EA500's actually have "Experimental" written on them, and are the interiors stripped? Doesn't sound like much of a delivery to me if true.