Wednesday, April 04, 2007


Mentoring

Several Eclipse position holders have expressed support for the mentoring program. For the less qualified and less confident, it is good insurance.

However, the way this mandatory 'baby sitter' program is structured, I would expect problems as the owner's desires conflict with the desires of the mentor.

To illustrate potential conflicts, I planned to write a fictional account of an owner who received his airplane late and now has to incorporate a mentor into his Aspen Christmas holiday plans. And of course, the only mentor available was that fellow up in New York, a retired trans-Atlantic airline pilot, fresh out of a divorce. And.....well you guys are going to have to make up your own happy or unhappy ending to that story.

Instead I am going to write about a true mentoring situation.

Henry and Louise Timken (owners, Timken Bearing) took delivery of Lear Jet 23-015 in 1965.
While Henry was chronologically senior to his wife, he was only VFR rated. Louise 56, was the captain and IFR rated. During training, Louise, uncomfortable with the power of the engines at 100% rpm's, declared that operationally, she would limit takeoff rpm's to 90% which really equated to about 75% of takeoff thrust with the CJ-610 turbojet engines.

After a couple of weeks of ground school and flight training (there was no flight simulator), they were ready to head home. With
Louise in the left seat, they taxied out to the runway. After a short hold for the clearance, it was on to the active. The engines spooled up, brake release and more rpm's until both engine were screaming like only those GE's do at 100%.

N88B accelerated quickly, V1, Vr, suck up the gear, clean up the flaps then Louise pulled the nose up into a steep 6,100 fpm climb, rolled into an equally steep turn headed towards Ohio. Her performance left those watching on the ramp speechless except for the guy who quietly muttered to himself, "holy shit." As for Henry and Louise, in 13 minutes she would be leveling off at FL 410 and pulling the power back, so as not to exceed the Mach .81 red line.

Henry and Louise flew that airplane a lot of years, logged over 2,300 jet hours. When the weather was bad or they were headed into higher density areas, they flew with Don Minter, their 'mentor pilot'. As they got older, I suspect Don flew with them more and more.

Today,
N88B is in the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson, AZ. A deserved resting place for great airplane and a fitting tribute to the crew who flew it.

63 comments:

Stan Blankenship said...

This post is dedicated to Ken and Shari Meyer.

May they have several thousand happy hours flying together in their Eclipse or what ever airplane they choose to fly.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Ditto that.

Blue Skies and CAVU to one of our resident DieHards!

Great story Stan - gotta luv those old Lear's.

Black Tulip said...

Stan,

I'd heard about this couple but not the detail you have offered. You're a good writer.

I've seen a Lear 23 make one of those departures and climbouts... it leaves the heart pounding. Later I was typed in a Lear 35A and note that it takes a whole minute longer, fourteen, to get to FL410.

Black Tulip

airtaximan said...

Great tribute and great wish - I wholeheartedly agree...all the best to the three of them flying together...

Ken, Shari and the mentor of course.

Who do you think will be stuck in the back?

:)

Gunner said...

Best of luck to ALL those who take delivery. I truly hope the plane (and Mentors) meet all expectations. I mean that with all sincerity.
Gunner

bill e. goat said...

Ken,
You "take a licking and keep on ticking"- and make the blog a better place!

Thanks for sticking it out with us here!

Best wishes from me as well, for many happy (takeoffs, and) returns !:)

airtaximan said...

Look at Stan's post, and apply some critical thinking (real tough for the die-hards, I know):

The Lear looks somewhat like the e-clips in the picture, does it not? Its a lot nicer looking IMHO - it looks like a jet, the E-clips does not in my eyes. Maybe the dorky looking e-plane will one day be in fashion, who knows.

What I read into Stan's post is:
* mentoring is not needed for most - what's up with e-clips. A good idea? Why mandated? Smelly, smelly.
* performance on the Eclipse was Eclipsed by a 42 year old airplane that could climb to FL 410 three times as fast and cruises
120 kts faster with a bigger cabin and can be flown by a grandma, according to Stan's description. This is a funny thing to keep in mind, considering:

It was 42 years ago, and since:
The government funded GAP to the tune of hundreds of millions, and the engine formed the technology basis for Vern's plane -it was scrapped, in favor of a CANADIAN engine. AGATE and SATS got hundreds of millions too...and the advanced avionics are in the garbage in favor of COTS. While FSW may save 10lbs of rivits.

The e-clips and Vern are the poster-child, today, with a plane that could seriously be considered obsolete by a 42 year old model.

HUH? Someone must be looking into this in Washington...

Someone is going to say "well, the plane is cheap" - yup, its being sold cheap - Dayjets cost $975,000 - now that's cheap!

But its not sustainable and neither is $1.5, IMHO. I think the orderbook is bunk.

I almost feel sorry for Vern - he got the job of trying to make something of all the govenment money wasted - and he's stuck with this. After 8 years, I think he's the "die-hardest" of them all.

I think this program might have been DOA... eclipsed by 42 year old technology a grandmother could fly -

hmmm

EclipseBlogger said...

Reposted from the previous thread...

Cherokee Driver said... On March 5, CharterX reported that Wichita, Kan.-based Cessna Aircraft Company had identified a software glitch in the Garmin G1000 software on its Citation Mustang. Garmin believes the "glitch" is fixed.

Uncle Frankie said... Here's your prediction... I believe you stand corrected.

Gee, I thought the opinion around here was that it's not fixed until the FAA says it's fixed. (Just kidding, I know better).

OK Uncle Frankie, prediction still stands. How about some details about what the "glitch" was/is. Why don't other users of the G1000 installations have the same "glitch"?

EclipseBlogger said...

UhTaxiMan said... The Lear looks somewhat like the e-clips in the picture, does it not? Its a lot nicer looking IMHO - it looks like a jet, the E-clips does not in my eyes. Maybe the dorky looking e-plane will one day be in fashion, who knows.

Actually, I was thinking the Lear 23 looked a lot like the Safire.

Stan, what percentage of the Lear 23's crashed? Great plane, when in the right hands.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Don't forget the French just tested a train that is faster than the E-500, and it doesn't even need to fly.

For EB -

FWIW, the G1000 has been plagued by 'glitches' in most of the aircraft it is installed in - this happens with integrated avionics.

As another example, Primus Epic almost derailed several airframe projects - delaying some by months into years.

The issue is not that integrated avionics are difficult to develop and field, although they are.

The the issue (and reason for this Blog IMO) is that where the G1000 and Garmin have a field record of success, as do the many and diverse airframers using the G1000 system (literally from single and multi-piston aircraft through helicopters and multi-jet airframes), Eclipse has a well documented history of missed objectives and blown schedules, and if that were not enough it has tossed the vendor of 8 years under the bus and essentially started over - they could be yards from the finish line and have decided to start over.

That in a nutshell is why Cessna and Garmin get a pass from most of us with aviation knowledge and experience, and why Vern and Eclipse get constant scrutiny.

Pelton is not out shouting from the rooftops about how only he and his company know how to build planes, he is not out insulting the competition and tossing vendors under the bus, he is not out making pronounciations and spending $20M a year on free pop insulting the intelligence of the average person who is passionate about aviation.

No, Pelton and Cessna are quietly going about their business. Same with Schuster at the new Hawker-Beechcraft, and Embraer, and the other 'real' aircraft companies.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Aviation Safety Network statistics (www.aviation-safety.net) show 24 hull losses out of 104 airframes, with 58 fatalities for the Learjet 23.

If Eclipse gets to 104 or more airframes, I think we can all safely say we hope the hull losses and loss of life will not be as great, but at the end of the day this is an airplane, not a bunch of operating system code, and THAT is why so many of us take severe offense at the hubris of 'delivering' aircraft knowlingly that do not meet the capabilities of the promised aircraft, only to be fixed at some future date.

a37pilot said...

Does anyone have any information about how many people are in training at this time.

EclipseBlogger said...

ColdSlimyFishInHisOwnReality said... Don't forget the French just tested a train that is faster than the E-500, and it doesn't even need to fly.

Faster that the Mustang, CJ1, and a host of other aircraft, too.

ColdSlimyFishInHisOwnReality said... FWIW, the G1000 has been plagued by 'glitches' in most of the aircraft it is installed in - this happens with integrated avionics. As another example, Primus Epic almost derailed several airframe projects - delaying some by months into years.

The issue is not that integrated avionics are difficult to develop and field, although they are. The the issue (and reason for this Blog IMO) is that where the G1000 and Garmin have a field record of success.


Garmin is a great company and has great products. But, they are hardly without their delays and failures. How about the WAAS upgrade to the 430/530. How long did that take? And the G1000 can hardly be said to have a great field record. It's only been out a short time, and as you have said, it's been plagued with "glitches".

As for Avidyne getting smashed by the big bus, I don't think you can say that has been entirely Eclipse's doing. Avidyne had been promising date after date for completion and certification, and each time the date went by. Eclipse finally had to make a decision to take another path. Smart move? Costly move? Correct business decision? We'll have to wait for the movie to come out to see how this all ends.

EclipseBlogger said...

a37pilot said... Does anyone have any information about how many people are in training at this time.

14, two classes of 7

airtaximan said...

cold-hearted-fish-of-reality,

I just noticed my April 16th issue of Forbes magazine, and YUP...
A NEW Full Page Eclipse Advertisement...

I guess the likes of Cessna and Embraer with their deep pockets are happy with their 250 orderbooks, while somehow, Vern who is cutting back on color photocopies is unsatisfied with his 2500 orderbook.

So yup, Vernster is still up to his old tricks. When in doubt -advertise!

I wonder what the per-aircraft sales-cost for E-clipse is? It must be pretty high. All that effort for such a little plane.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

EB are you dense on purpose or does it just come naturally?

There are hundreds of G1000 equipped aircraft flying now from Bell Helicopter, Columbia Aircraft, Diamond, Cessna, and Mooney to name a few, having been being delivered for years.

My point was that an experienced avionics developer, and its' experienced airframe customers have had issues which resulted in delays of months.

Did these experienced airframers panic, blame their failures on the supplier and publicly toss their vendor under the bus? No. They calmly worked through the issues and got things certified and delivered planes to their customers that actually did what they said it would do.

Novel concept, huh?

airtaximan said...

EB,

The whole industry is built upon supply chain management and vendor selection and relationships. All the OEMs have problems and glitches, but the gold standard is hed by companies such as Cessna, Embraer, etc.. There is always room for improvement.

Vern's whole business was designed around improving all of this -

I would say in vendor selection and management Vern gets a grade of F. BIG FAT F. And he cannot blame any of them, he owns the blame 100% - he selected them, and he mismanaged them.

The "missed promises" argument laid on Avidyne is just more Vern BS. Supplier management is one of "no surprises" - and if you believe there were many broken promises, the supplier should have been gone long ago. This does not add up.

IMHO
;)

airtaximan said...

EB, really? Safire?

I don't think it had tip tanks?

check this out:

http://images.google.com/images?sourceid=navclient&aq=%22safire%20aircraft%22&ie=UTF-8&rls=DKUS,DKUS:2006-50,DKUS:en&q=%22safire+aircraft%22&oe=UTF-8&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

gadfly said...

AeroObserver

There is a lesson or two, from the “Aerodrome” incident. Dr. Langley failed, and knew it. He recognized that the Wrights’ had succeeded. He even offered to help fund the Wrights’, but was turned down. He died in 1906.

The Aerodrome was an attempt to build an aircraft that was completely stable. The airfoil design was wrong, the center of lift was wrong, and the wing was not properly supported to take the loads involved, and folded upward shortly after launch.

The Wright philosophy was that the aircraft should be somewhat unstable, and require the constant input from an intelligent pilot . . . and developed “wing warping” to control flight (evolving into ailerons). Their philosophy ran counter to all other thinking at the time, including that of Dr. Langley. This doesn’t detract from Dr. Langley, who at least made a great effort. And he had the funding of the Smithsonian and the government behind his efforts. The Wrights, on the other hand, had only their own money, from building and sales of their bicycles, and some money from family members.

The Wrights’ had patents on their wing warping control. Along comes Glen Curtis who did not want to pay the royalties for using the Wright’s patent. So, to discredit them, and with permission from the Smithsonian (to support the former secretary and now deceased, Dr. Langley) he modified the “Aerodrome” with many structural “wire support” modifications, not readily noticed by most people, and got the “Aerodrome” to stay aloft, briefly, but little else. The Smithsonian supported his efforts, which led to a battle, and insult to the Wright’s . . . and the (near) original Wright Flyer was sent to England, for display in the Science Museum of London. By 1916, Orville was tired of the legal battles and turned to other interests.

The efforts of Fred C. Kelly were finally successful in convincing the Smithsonian to admit their complicity in the fraudulent efforts of Glen Curtis . . . and in 1942 made public their part in the fraud. Because of the “War” (WWII), the “Flyer” was not returned to the US of A until 1948, just in time for Orville to have the long ordeal come to a good ending. Orville died of a heart attack while fixing a door bell in his home, in 1948 . . . Wilbur had died in 1912 from typhoid fever.

The Wright Flyer is on display at the Smithsonian, and a dark chapter in this otherwise reputable institution fades into history, and is little known today.

An otherwise brilliant man, Glen Curtis, was greedy, and proud. He convinced others to support his scheme, and brought shame on many people. All the players are now long dead. It is interesting that a corporation came into existence call “Curtis Wright” . . . two names that were at one time bitter enemies.

Probably the greatest contributions of the Wrights were their methodical approach to airfoil design, and their wind tunnel.

gadfly

(There are many lessons to be applied to the "Eclipse" saga, but I leave that for you to fill in the blanks.)

Bambazonke said...

Airtaximan you wonder why KKA is spending all these marketing $'s when his book is so full?

Maybe it is because his bull I mean book is not so full. I looked up an trusted industry source for OEM registry information that gives delivery position holders names under assigned serial numbers. This is what I found;

In the first 89 serial numbers KKA has 38 positions with no Delivery Position Holder information, in other words the position is registered to EAC. There are 39 Position holders, and Daydreamers have 13.

I think this information is quite correct, because of late EAC has been sending out letters to Platinum position holders telling them that there has been "compression" in the delivery schedule and that their serial numbers have jumped forward, some as much as 10%.

From day one EAC has monkeyed around with positions/serial numbers, early takers were given nice certificates with their positions on, these were later changed to serial numbers and they are being changed again.

I believe that their book is no where near the size they claim, it is merely a ruse to try and create demand, and it is going to bite EAC, the current position holders and the investors in this company in the ass. This is the reason for the disproportionate marketing efforts considering the size of the so called book.

IF this speculation is correct, then this bubble will burst as soon as their production ramps up and the current position holders are suddenly moving forward in their serial numbers in leaps and bounds the result will be a complete loss of confidence in the product and the company.

Of course the other problem is, people don't want to be early birds, because they are getting a crippled bird that they are going to have to pay for it when it is delivered and hope like hell KKA can keep people sending in their advance payments to fund the retrofits and keep the line running. I do not see any advantage in being at the front of the cue, in fact no advantage to be within the first 1000 planes, because I think that funding will become a real issue when they ramp up, and anyone that has parted with their 60% will be at big risk. Not only that, you can buy early sn aircraft for significantly less than EAC is selling you make believe positions for (positions that I predict will suddenly get ' delivery compression) and you will be asked to pony up a lot more for the position than what a position can be bought for in the open market.

airtaximan said...

Reprint from Airport Journals
SEPTEMBER 2004

"However, Eclipse’s Raburn says he doesn’t plan to offer full-motion simulator training.

“We feel we have a superior training program,” he said. “Each pilot/student will be required to have jet time in our Eclipse 500, which we believe is the best way for a pilot to learn how to fly the plane they will be type-rated in.”

Raburn, who is a highly rated pilot, said he’s aware that not everyone agrees with his idea of using an L-39 Albatross jet trainer, but he believes it will teach pilots the skills they need in case they get into an upset recovery situation. Thickey said Global likes the idea that they are doing something about upset recovery training, but she’s not sure about the two-seat, tandem L-39.

Rich Stowell, FAA safety counselor, master/CFI-A, and the president and CEO of the Aviation Learning Center at Santa Paula Airport, is an upset recovery and spin/stall expert; he says Eclipse’s training in that area is lacking.

“It’s certainly better than nothing,” she said.

There are insurers, brokers and industry experts that question Eclipse’s training program, such as an AIG underwriter who said if you looked closer, their training is “smoke and mirrors.”

“The L-39 has nothing to do with making the Eclipse 500 Jet insurable. It’s a low-wing aircraft, which would be a good vehicle to practice loops in, but it has nothing to do with how twinjets feel and operate in upset recovery,” said the senior underwriter. “Additionally, Eclipse doesn’t specify that pilots must be ‘proficient’ in IFR or multiengine ratings; they only require that pilots have the ratings. FAA-approved jet flight schools such as FlightSafety, SimuFlite, SimCom or other schools recommend pilots take refresher courses before attending serious training.”

De Spain agreed, but added that UND has been great for Cirrus and other aircraft in that class, but not for jet training.

“Eclipse’s altitude chamber sessions they plan on putting pilots into isn’t necessarily going to make the 500 more insurable either,” he said.

Rich Stowell, an FAA safety counselor and master/CFI-A who is CEO and president of the Aviation Learning Center at Santa Paula Airport (SZP), recommended that Eclipse teach “real” upset recovery training. He said the nearby FAA-approved Flight Research Training Center, a General Dynamics-owned corporation, was a good choice.

“This would provide a stark contrast between a legitimate approach to upset recovery training that is a two-day intensive course, inclusive of three hours with an in-flight modified Learjet versus Eclipse’s two 20-minute amusement rides in an L-39,” he said. “The irony is that Eclipse and this joint government-industry-initiative program, developed with NASA, are both located in New Mexico. I believe it’s a disservice to mask their in-house upset training as being anywhere near comprehensive or good enough.”

Stowell, who developed the three-phase, FAA-approved EMT Program, including unusual attitude spin recoveries and inverted/upright and upright/ inverted transitions, has successfully taught 24,800 spin/stalls to students worldwide.

“I’m not trying to pick on Eclipse, but this is very serious,” he said. “Do it right or don’t do it at all.”

Former FAA Administrator Jane Garvey highly recommended Stowell’s program and expertise. In an article, “Surviving the Worst,” she said, “Not only has he authored a comprehensive book and a video on the subject, but this was also the only course we found that included specific training on dealing with control surface failures and off-airport landings—just the sort of things GA pilots are likely to encounter.”

Johnson said he believes it’s going to be a real surprise when owner/operators realize they won’t be able to fly the Eclipse 500 alone.

“These new jet-rated pilots will end up paying for a qualified jet pilot to attend Eclipse’s type-rating program, to essentially baby-sit them until they’re qualified to fly alone as captain-in-command,” he said. “Vern has professed that the five-seat Eclipse jet will be used for air taxis; however, the training program, as it stands now, and the fact that numerous pilot/owners have put deposits down, is incongruous. If he actually refunds pilots who can’t cut the mustard, as he’s promised, he’ll be the first person in history to do that. Nevertheless, I do believe Eclipse is a well-designed aircraft.”

...from 2004
Very interesting.

Gunner said...

EB-
You know, your insistence on finding cutesy variations of Blogger Handles is not insulting; it's not infuriating; but it is REAL childish. It would be childish even if it weren't done so poorly.

Wanna argue with someone, then argue with what they have to say....because, I gotta tell you, I read your opening salutations and I form an opinion of everything that will follow. I simply skip to the next entry.

Please. Don't be a twit.
Gunner

airtaximan said...

BBZ:

I've watched this thing for some time, and I believe they have a few hundred legit orders (max 700 but likely closer to 500-600 orders), plus speculators, plus Aviace-type orders, plus Daydream orders a la Nimbus.

There's no reason to spend thousands now, when delivering planes is obviously a big problem, unless the orderbook is a BIG problem.

If there were 2500 orders, I doubt he would be spending on anything except fixing and certifying the plane.

I wonder how the suppliers and position-holders would feel if they knew the quality of the orderbook.

Vern's claimed no real losses of orders, even at the engine change and performance shortfalls, and has maintained that there are around 2000-2400 orders on the books for many, many years.

This does not add up.

airtaximan said...

BBZ,

you say: "I believe that their book is no where near the size they claim, it is merely a ruse to try and create demand"

I say: "without a large orderbook there is no case for higher rate lower cost jets. NO CASE."

-no sales
-no investors
-no suppliers
-no cheap plane
-no cheap JetIncomplete
-no cheap training

nothing - the house of cards has fallen.

I think they have been operating without a real large orderbook for a long time, and there could be hell to pay.

Bambazonke said...

Airtaximan,"without a large orderbook there is no case for higher rate lower cost jets. NO CASE."

I agree with you to drive home some of your points, P&W would not be offering the deals they have obviously offered on the engines if the volumes were not what KKA has bluffed. Suppliers overseas would not have ramped up for low unit run orders.

From the get-go EAC has tried to create markets not satisfy defined markets. Text book reasons for failure. They have vacillated between the air-taxi market and the retail buyer, whatever was in vogue that week. None of these markets have ever supported the numbers that he has postulated, and I have thought for a while now that the worst thing that could happen to EAC is they get their TC and they start pump these wonderjets out the door. Once this production starts in earnest and they hit these heady numbers of production units per month they are going to run through their order book like a dose of salts. At the same time the numbers of units for sale on the market is going to increase due to a number of reasons, not the least of which is the normal attrition of the orders due to changing conditions with the buyers, divorce, financial, change in needs etc. and this will slow down new orders. Couple this to the true features of this wonderjet becoming known such as lack of payload, reliability and range, not to mention a bogus order book, there will be a repeat of the Meridian bloat in the early 2000's for many of the same reasons that have been offered above, but this will be on a monumental scale.

KKA has created his own worst enemy, the market did not respond like he thought he could get it to respond to his manipulation, in the meantime he has hocked the company to the hilt. So much so that the chances of ever recovering their NRC are zero and none, and the only people that have profited in this venture have been the people that sold their positions whilst the hype was still high.

The factor I keep searching for is the secret to how KKA has managed to sell this so well to the 'faithful. I have never seen people with such blinders on around any product. The snake oil sales ability is awesome, the marketing of the aircraft has permeated this industry to it's cores like no other product ever has. How has he managed this without product, without meeting promises? How has he managed to maintain credibility with smart people for so long?

EclipseBlogger said...

Industry headline news
Eclipse 500 Jets Delivered to DayJet OK with FAA
04-Apr-2007
By Karen Di Piazza

On April 2, CharterX reported that another news organization had suggested that Albuquerque, N.M.-based Eclipse Aviation Corp., manufacturer of the Eclipse 500, delivered jets without a certificate of airworthiness. "You can't deliver aircraft without a C of A!" says Eclipse spokesperson Andrew Broom, referring to air-taxi operator DayJet Services, LLC, which took delivery of three Eclipse 500s on March 31.
Broom says, "Flight International had to finalize their story on Thursday [March 29] for its April 2 publication. At that time, only one of the three [aircraft] had its C of A."

UK-based FI's online report read: "Although Eclipse Aviation confirms that serial number 2 [N126DJ] has received its certificate of airworthiness, it declines to say whether the other two aircraft have completed certification..." As the article was published after DayJet took delivery of its first three aircraft [out of 239], Eclipse's practices were questioned. However, the airframer did nothing wrong.

Broom said that all of DayJet's aircraft delivered March 31, tail numbers N110DJ, N1226DJ and N109DJ, "have a C of A." According to FAA documents, that's correct.

Meanwhile, Delray Beach, Fla.-based DayJet Services, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of DayJet Corp., will begin training its pilots in Eclipse 500 very light jets. And according to Eclipse, production schedules will increase to meet DayJet's per-seat, on-demand charter launch by the end of the second quarter. Additionally, Eclipse expects to receive its production certificate from the FAA in the near future, which will rapidly increase customer aircraft deliveries.

To send a news tip or feedback, email CharterX news editor Karen@CharterX.com.

EclipseBlogger said...

ATM said... The "missed promises" argument laid on Avidyne is just more Vern BS. Supplier management is one of "no surprises" - and if you believe there were many broken promises, the supplier should have been gone long ago. This does not add up.

No argument here about the blame game, but in reality, the delays were not single sided and it just became time to make a decision. This was no different than the Williams fiasco. You already stated your opinion that the design was too frail, and should have been scrapped. It was a good decision to go with P&WC. The "blame it on the supplier" press is unfortunate and did/does hurt Eclipse.

EclipseBlogger said...

BambaFlunk said... In the first 89 serial numbers KKA has 38 positions with no Delivery Position Holder information, in other words the position is registered to EAC. There are 39 Position holders, and Daydreamers have 13.

All that means is that no registration number has been assigned to aircraft that are not yet in production. The ones that show up are either N-numbers that were reserved by the customer, or assigned by Eclipse. The reserved numbers were then transferred to Eclipse. The FAA database is also not current and lags quite a bit. I believe your assumption is incorrect.

EclipseBlogger said...

Gunner said... EB - You know, your insistence on finding cutesy variations of Blogger Handles is not insulting; it's not infuriating; but it is REAL childish. It would be childish even if it weren't done so poorly.

Gunner, lighten up. It happens all day long and is just in fun. If you think anyone here takes offense from someone on a blog that they never met you're as lame as I think you are. Go shoot some seals.

Gunner said...

Oh, I get it now. You're being funny. "Funny ha-ha or Funny queer?" ;-)

Difference between funny and witty: funny appeals to children; witty appeals to adults.

Now Vern....Vern is truly funny.
So are terms like BambaFlunk, ColdSlimyFishInHisOwnReality, Uncle Frankie and UhTaxiMan. Problem is, being "funny like that" detracts from your message. Carry on as you will.
Gunner

EclipseBlogger said...

It's OK Gunner, I don't take you seriously either.

By the way, your avatar borders on childish. I bet you drew pictures of the teacher in grade school as well.

Stan Blankenship said...

eb,

Let's get back to serious issues.

Yes, the three DayJet deliveries were supported by FAA signed C of A's.

However, the circumstances around two of the three signatures remain in question. We have not heard the last of this by any means.

airtaximan said...

EB,

You are correct, but, supplier selection is the key.

There is a criteria for selecting suppliers, and systems. If you have to throw out yur major suppliers after years of working with them, it shows that you lack a competency. Supplier selection is key.

Grade F.

Also, sounds like you are pinning the "Blame - game" on the press, which I do not buy. All part of Vern's attitude, I'm afraid.

airtaximan said...

Stan:

So airtaximan IS WRONG!

You seem to be a little hesitant regarding the CofAs...why?

Circumstances surrounding them?

What about the other 2 planes in the line?

EclipseBlogger said...

Stan, what makes you believe there is a problem with the issuance and/or signoff of the CoA on two of the aircraft? From the article, it seems to imply this was all just an issue of timing vs reporting.

Stan Blankenship said...

eb,

Let's just say a frigging little birdy whispered in my ear and I am not going to sit here and let you bait me into saying more...

EclipseBlogger said...

Also, sounds like you are pinning the "Blame - game" on the press, which I do not buy. All part of Vern's attitude, I'm afraid.

I don't blame it on the press, they just report what Vern said. My feeling is that the blame goes on Eclipse for not multi-sourcing the development long before the termination of Avidyne. For whatever reason, Avidyne was unable to complete the project on schedule.

The ironic part of the story is had they been able to get the job done by 2004, as originally proposed and contracted, there would have been no aircraft to mount the system into.

EclipseBlogger said...

Stan said... Let's just say a frigging little birdy whispered in my ear and I am not going to sit here and let you bait me into saying more...

Isn't that what this blog is for - open exchange of information? I've upheld my promises by providing you with information whenever available. Let's share information, not innuendo.

airtaximan said...

EB,
you said:
"The ironic part of the story is had they been able to get the job done by 2004, as originally proposed and contracted, there would have been no aircraft to mount the system into."

How true. I guess in programs with delays, there needs to be a tremendous amount of trust that the money you spend in development (my understanding is that when E-clips got into dire straits a few years back, Avidyne took a deal to spend their own money, and get reimbursed)will have a return. The program needs to be successful.

Maybe they had their doubts...

All in all, you seem to be flying straight and level on this...

Stan Blankenship said...

eb,

And I exchanged with you the information I know.

Gunner said...

EB said:
"Isn't that what this blog is for - open exchange of information?"

Now that IS funny. Funny, ha-ha. Adult funny! The Faithful drag in every bit of Eclipse disinformation, disregard the scam of FSW, disregard the scam of the Order Book, disregard the scam of AvioNG/PC/Full Production is "just around the corner"...and you represent that as "open exchange of information"?

I take it back. You ARE a witty guy. ;-)
Gunner

Bambazonke said...

EB- All that means is that no registration number has been assigned to aircraft that are not yet in production

Only partially correct, you are correct in that not all of these positions have N numbers assigned, however, there are many positions that do not have N numbers assigned that have Position Holders, so the fact that there is no assignment of N number does not preclude the position holder having his name affixed to the position. SO I am afraid that this does not look good for EAC..

EclipseBlogger said...

BZ (not to upset Gunner) said... however, there are many positions that do not have N numbers assigned that have Position Holders

The missing registration numbers are for positions that have not yet entered into the production line and therefore may not have paperwork filed as yet. If you look at the list that I posted, you'll see all positions have n-numbers through position 50 with the exception of two. S/Ns after 50 that have had n-numbers assigned are for position holders where they have already transferred ownership of the reserved numbers with the FAA to Eclipse in anticipation of production. That's why you don't see any assignments after S/N 90 at all.

EclipseBlogger said...

LOLGunner said... Now that IS funny. Funny, ha-ha. Adult funny! The Faithful drag in every bit of Eclipse disinformation, disregard the scam of FSW, disregard the scam of the Order Book, disregard the scam of AvioNG/PC/Full Production is "just around the corner"...and you represent that as "open exchange of information"?

Being one of the faithful, I have also provided this blog with any and all facts, publications, rumors, and opinions that I have - whether they support or diminish my case as one of the Faithful. You on the other hand, only bring your one sided, preconceived views and opinions, with little basis of fact. But, hey, that's fair too.

Your use of the word "scam" may be a fair analogy, maybe not. But, it is not "fact". It is indeed your opinion, and the opinion of many here. But that doesn't make it fact. Perhaps someday you will be substantiated. But until then, at least have the common sense and intelligence to call it what it is.

AeroObserver said...

Regarding Eclipse 500 orders, the company now just says 2,500, but this is a mix of firm orders and deposit-held options. The last break down of firm orders and options I can find in Eclipse's press release archive is from November 2005, when it said it had 2,357 total orders: "Eclipse"s order book includes 1,592 firm orders with 765 options. All 2,357 aircraft are secured with non-refundable deposits."

I couldn't find the latest breakdown of the 2,500 orders (i.e. firm versus secured options) in my notes from Eclipse's NBAA 2006 press conference, but I did scribble down that Vern said they're all backed by deposits. My best guess would be about 1,700 firm and 800 secured options.

If all options materialize into firm orders, that's two and a half years of full-tilt production (1,000 aircraft per year), which they're not even close to yet. Given that they plan to deliver 400-500 airplanes this year, that still leaves two years of full production -- out to 2010 -- until they need to add to the sales trough.

Worst-case scenario, where none of the options materialize and 200 firm orders cancel, they'll still have a year of full-up production in 2008 until they need to add to the sales trough. Of course, if this happens, they can also slow down the production ramp up to buy more time.

I won't even speculate if Eclipse can even produce 1,000 airplanes a year. No jet has ever been produced at this rate, so I'm waiting for the movie to come out on this one.

lumar said...

Game over! It was easier to make promises in the fog before certification.

Now is clear: No easy rating, no insurance, no fun anymore!

I am courios how the MS-investors try to get their money back! Going public??

mirage00 said...

Stan,

Is this the same "little birdie" that told you Vern was responsible for the FAA user fees proposal?

You just can't make this stuff up. lol

EclipseBlogger said...

Lumar said... Now is clear: No easy rating, no insurance, no fun anymore!

Clear? Maybe to you. I don't think anything is clear in this project.

No easy rating? It should be easier than most aircraft for any competent pilot. Perhaps you'll need to polish up on YOUR skills.

No insurance? Several owners and prospective owners have insurance commitments in place. Again, maybe it relates to YOUR skills.

No fun? Gunner and I are having loads of fun. Airtaximan seems to be laughing in the isles as well.

You're wrong on all counts.

Stan Blankenship said...

mirage,

Here is the title of the March 15 post:

"Did Vern Provoke the General Aviation User Fee Discussion?"

Some hold Vern responsible...the post presented information for everyone to make up their own mind.

mirage00 said...

Stan,

Yes... It was a very objective title. Thanks for clarifying.

Black Tulip said...

The enduring faith of Eclipse Aircraft supporters warrants more examination. If the face of multiple setbacks and a shadowy future, the faithful labor on - arduous workers toiling in the vineyard of aviation.

Is this a business, a religion or a cult? Don't dismiss the thought, as it could have significant financial implications. Religious organizations don't pay taxes. When the income comes rolling in - four hundred planes this year, a thousand next - then profits will eventually offset the massive billion-dollar tax loss carryforward.

Why pay taxes when the Eclipse story has all the makings of a religious organization - belief in the supernatural, an enduring faith in the face of adversity, the ability to weather persecution, a willingness to proselytize the infidels and messianic belief that 'depositor' equals 'owner.' Many are willing to forego the pleasures of earth (owning a nice airplane now) on the promise of aviation nirvana... a little jet so sublime and sweet that the will force great unwashed to their unclad knees.

Father Vern should reorganize Eclipse as a religion, eliminating the corporate tax burden and making deposits and payments charitable deductions.

Thus the story of the church will be told in a new context: "How do you tell when it is midnight in the chancery? (read hangar) "When the big hand touches the little hand."

May we hear from the altar boys on the blog?

Black Tulip

EclipseOwner387 said...

Lumar,

You did notice the article from AirJordanMan was dated September 2004?

airtaximan said...

Airtaximan IS laughing, maybe making some new friends, too.

I think you guys are all great - seriously. What an enthusiastic passionate creative group of opinionated folks. This is terrific.

I'm hearing rumblings that insurance was tied to United training...and is quickly becoming the new stumbling block.

Anyone else?

airtaximan said...

Aobserver:

you say:

"Eclipse"s order book includes 1,592 firm orders with 765 options. All 2,357 aircraft are secured with non-refundable deposits."

All backed by "non-refundable deposits - how do you have an option backed with a non-refundable deposit?

Perhaps every option has been taken by a firm order-holder? What's the ratio of orders to options? 1-100? Who knows.

1,592 firm orders - backed by what? A fleet order of 1,000 backed by a $2,000,000 deposit? What constitutes a deposit?

Keep the fiath...watch the expensive full page ads, and think again. No way any company would be spending on full page ads, taking a 90 day trip throughout Europe to sell planes, and stop color copies at the same time, IF in fact they had 2500 orders, and couldn't deliver planes...

They would conserve cash, reduce marketing, and fix the planes...

noodle a bit more on this...

This is a scam, I assure you.

EclipseBlogger said...

ATM, you have to ask yourself, if an ad at $30,000 brings in just one deposit of $155,000, is it worth it? How about 5 orders? How many planes do you have to take orders for if a European tour costs say $3000-$5000 per day? (5000 x 90 = $450,000) If they take 5 deposits, was it worth it to break even. How many more do you have to sell to really make it a worthwhile trip?

EclipseBlogger said...

ATM said...
Airtaximan IS laughing, maybe making some new friends, too.

I think you guys are all great - seriously. What an enthusiastic passionate creative group of opinionated folks. This is terrific.


We may actually have some fun over a couple of beers - as long as you don't bring up the subject of all the lying scum and con artists in ABQ.

airtaximan said...

EB,
Yup, with all the success they've had so far, Spending millions in 8 years, I'm sure they will obtain many more orders with the current marketing blitz...maybe another 1,000 or so to really make a difference.

EB, its YOUR deposit money they are spending. If they have 2500 orders (really), do you really think obtaining another 5-10 would make a big difference? These would generate revenue, in say 2010?

Any order using today's cash could easily be obtained later, no?

Should'nt they be spending on delivering planes? The biggest detriment to their "orders book" is probably their lack of performance DELIVERING airplanes, right? Wouldn't THIS actually generate SALES at no delta cost?

Come on...your argument is a BIG stretch. It sounds like Vern-P.

Let's see: I have 2500 orders, and I've delivered a handfull of planes in 9 months since certification, while promising hundreds of deliveries....and I'm stopping photocopies becasue I have no money.

So I buy some expensive ads and go on an INternational sales tour?

Do you really belive this?

airtaximan said...

EB,

"We may actually have some fun over a couple of beers - as long as you don't bring up the subject of all the lying scum and con artists in ABQ."

OK.
Here's what I think, for the record, in the immortal words of JFK:

THE GREAT ENEMY OF THE TRUTH IS VERY OFTEN NOT THE LIE - DELIBERATE, CONTRIVED AND DISHONEST - BUT THE MYTH - PERSISTENT, PERSUASIVE AND UNREALISTIC"

This is an accurate description of Vern and E-clips, giving them maximum benefit of the doubt.

Otherwise, you would have to just call them "lying, scum and con artists" as you have put it.

I belive a fraud has been perpetrated. I'm sure a lot of very good people have been caught in the myth - investors, engineers, DARs, politicos, suppliers, and depositors - BUT but some(one) created the myth and deliberately perpetuated it. Many facts, truths and realities have been covered up and replaced with what someone wants the public to think. Its a myth.

I'd enjoy a beer with you and everyone else here...sorry about my humble opinion.

Cheers!

EclipseBlogger said...

ATM said... Come on...your argument is a BIG stretch. It sounds like Vern-P.

You've already surmised that they need money, and revenue. What better way to collect some needed cash than to collect new deposits on fresh orders. It's all income, with only the sales expense - no vendors to pay in 30 days. New orders are part of the cash flow plan.

Gunner said...

"New orders are part of the cash flow plan."

Translation:
As long as three-year-in-future customers keep paying for today's production, we call ourselves a "success". One helluva "cash flow plan", I'd say. I think I've seen it before.

Oh, yes, I have seen it.
It's a direct quote from the fictitious autobiography of the non-fictitious
Charles Ponzi
.

Gunner

Frank Castle said...

Hey, I'm all for the "Beers & Buds" program......

Somebody pick a spot for it to happen !

Frank Castle said...

ANYWHERE but Portales........hehe

EclipseBlogger said...

Frank, if we bring out the beers, can we get some info on what challenges Garmin is having with the Mustang?