Friday, September 14, 2007

E500 Reliability & Maintainability White Paper

ColdWetMackarelofReality served up some thoughts on an Eclipse 'White Paper' written in 2004 to address reliability and maintainability issues for the 500.

He described it as the 'Reliability and Maintainability Toilet Paper':

First paragraph in the document:

"This document is provided by Eclipse Aviation to provide information regarding the reliability and maintainability design of the Eclipse 500. The data and information in this publication do not constitute an offer and are subject to change without notice. Binding guarantees of the design of the aircraft are contained in the Eclipse 500 Deposit Agreement."This is not a specification document, and has no binding effect on the airplane itself - in short, it is a puff piece.

Also, note the consistent use of the present tense, including the availability of a Phased Inspection Program - in October of 2004, two years BEFORE the plane was certified (three years after it was supposed to be certified).

Careful review of the toilet paper shows the same low opinion of the customer and their experience\knowledge, it does this first by completely ignoring the existing practice (and for carriers 'requirement') of operators designing and certifying their own maintenance plans either by themselves (the airlines and larger 135 operators) or with help (CAMPS and similar) if their experience showed the Mx intervals to be too tight. Eclipse would have you believe that the dinosaurs and FAA are out to make Mx expensive when nothing could be further from the truth.

Eclipse again tries to fool the potentially unknowing customer into believing that light bulbs and prox switches are the major cost drivers for Mx - simply not so - the primary cost driver for Mx of TAA and highly integrated airliners and transport aircraft is inadequate troubleshooting resulting in 'swaptronics' (trading one box for another box when no fault can be found) due to dependencies and integrations that are either misunderstood or were never identified in the Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) and System Safety Assessment (SSA) and Failure Hazard Analysis (FHA).

Next they suggest that MSG-3 principles were used in the design of the plane and the selection of the parts - a quick review of the track record of the flight test aircraft issues as well as the few we have already heard about from the customer fleet would seem to indicate that like many other things, Eclipse is using language that sounds good but which they do not understand. MSG-3 analysis is very specific and is intended for establishing the scheduled Mx and Servicing intervals at an appropriate level to minimize cost and damage from 'over' maintaining the aircraft, and to ensure that failures are accounted for. And contrary to Eclipse's contention, MSG-3 has 4 parts, not 2 - including Lightning and HIRF - sure hope that same commitment to excellence that gave us 150 hour windshields didn't miss that L\HIRF requirement.

They then go on to suggest that they are somehow unique in using LED's for lighting or brushless actuators - again, nothing could be further from the truth. LED lighting has been in aircraft use since before the Eclipse nightmare was a dream - Eclipse did not invent brushless actuators, and they are in use in a number of aircraft right now.

Once again we see the 'magic' baffle them with BS term LRU or Line Replaceable Unit - a term invented by military logisticians 3 or 4 decades ago. It is only impressive to the uninitiated.

The largest single piece in the toilet paper is dedicated to AVIO (TM) Total Aircraft Integration (TM) - guess they need to revise it to AVIO (TM) NfG (TM) Total Aircraft Schedule Failure (TM).

Eclipse boasts of having a Highly Accelerated Life Test (HALT) Lab - too bad that unlike a 'real' HALT lab operated by a 'real' OEM, the OEnM in Albuquerque HALT lab provided no temperature variation - like say departing PHX at 118 degrees with a direct climb to FL410 (hey it is my dream, anything is possible, just ask the Faithful) - coldsoak at altitude for 2 or 3 hours, then drop into ATL. Clearly not the same, and ignoring environmental effects when claiming HALT testing is laughable at best.

And what happened to those 'Beta' aircraft? Each of 3 was supposed to fly 1000 hours resulting in learning the initial problem areas BEFORE customer deliveries. The entire program, including the original Williams powered version, plus the abomination with the non-man rated cruise missile turbojets, AND the test fleet had less than 3000 hours when certifications was celebrated (prematurely).

And lastly, the LRU based Mx concept that the toilet paper suggests, will drive costs higher, not lower, due to the complexity of the integration. This company has not solved any of the major challenges before them and it is a safe bet that no number of software engineers (at the airplane NON-manufacturer) can possibly have envisioned all the different failure modes that HAL will come up with.

'Open the pod bay doors HAL'

'I'm sorry Dave, I can't do that, but you know I have the highest regard for you and the crew and am committed to the success of the mission.'

Thank you coldfish for the excellent analysis.


1 – 200 of 291   Newer›   Newest»
Stan Blankenship said...

Here is the link to the 'White Paper'.

bill e. goat said...

The white paper is interesting. I think the concept was impressive, I guess the execution remains somewhat in question, until more service time is racked up.

Ken, do you know the
a) fleet time (hrs)
b) high-time (hrs)


Stan Blankenship said...

For better visibility, EA50, sparky, 9Z, anonymous and others may want to repost their latest comments to this thread.

Ken Meyer said...

Coldwet wrote,

"toilet paper"

Actually, my copy is printed on high-quality glossy bond. Coldwet calls it toilet paper because he can't find anything solid to dispute in it. But toilet paper is what you need when you realize that practically every word coldwet wrote is BS!

"in October of 2004...three years after [the Eclipse] was supposed to be certified"

Nope. That plane was NEVER slated for certification in 2001. That's baloney.

"Eclipse again tries to fool the potentially unknowing customer into believing that lightbulbs and prox switches are the major cost drivers for Mx"

They never said it was "the major cost drivers for maintenance." That's baloney. What they said was:

"Proximity sensors are used extensively in the Eclipse 500 in lieu of micro switches to improve reliability and reduce maintenance costs. Proximity switches are an extremely reliable means of sensing aircraft component status and are typically found only on larger, more expensive aircraft."

He goes on:

"the OEnM in Albuquerque HALT lab provided no temperature variation"

Baloney. How the heck can one guy make so many mistakes in a single posting unless he's lying??

From the AOPA article:

"The HALT lab is basically a big meat locker that can be cooled and heated from zero degrees Celsius to 55 degrees C. Cabinets inside the lab will be capable of exposing systems to temperatures as cold as minus 55 degrees C, typical of high-altitude operations."

"And what happened to those 'Beta' aircraft?"

They flew a lot. The test fleet had a total of about 3600 hours at certification.

I could find a half dozen more claims in coldwet's piece that are just flatout wrong, but why bother?

I think we'd all be better served by sticking to the facts instead of slinging the crap.


mirage00 said...

For visibility, I took the liberty of reposting some news.

"Pogo Jet, the US air taxi start-up headed by former American Airlines chairman Robert Crandall, has filed for an initial public offering and plans to begin operations in early 2009 using Eclipse 500 very light jets.

Formed in 2001, and at one time a customer for the Adam A700 VLJ, Pogo plans to offer private on-demand jet charter, initially focused on major eastern US metropolitan markets such as New York, Washington and Boston.

The planned initial service area will reach north to Montreal in Canada, south to Charlotte, North Carolina and inland to Cincinatti, Ohio and Detroit, Michigan.

In a filing with the US Securities Exchange Commission, Pogo Jet says it plans to use a fleet of Eclipse 500s, inaugurating service in the first quarter of 2009 and operating 25 aircraft by the end of 2009. Its fleet is planned to grow to around 100 VLJs by the end of 2011."

This train's unstoppable, guys.


I remain amused

double 00

sparky said...

This is interesting. What we have is basically two warring clans, with a few neutral parties looking in from time to time.

On the one hand you have the critics, a group of individuals from just about every segment of the aviation field with countless years of experience working on designing, and certifying aircraft.

They tend to employ logic, critical thinking and past experiences.

Then we have the believers, mostly pilots with a good bit of disposable cash, but no real world experience with aircraft other than what you would see from behind the yoke (or sidestick in this case.).

They tend to employ google attacks, press releases, white papers and Clichéd announcements of “being amused” and “Keeping it real”.

When confronted with a viewpoint they don’t like, or one that doesn’t agree with their personal viewpoints, they demand proof, but have no problem holding up a press release and stating “says right here” as if that is a given fact.

They point to the TC and PC and say “see, you said we’d never get this far” when in fact nobody has ever said they wouldn’t receive these.

They argue to the second decimal point from an AFM produced by a company whose only core competency seems to be borrowing money and missing milestones.

Seems kind of one sided to me.

anonymous avionics engineer said...

With Avio NfG my concerns wouldn't be of inadvertant activations. Having worked at Eclipse, I can state that the testing is extremely thorough. My concern would be if the testing reveals a design issue, what cheap bandaid would management want to put over the situation. This is how the landing gear came up with so many issues, management not wanting to impede the schedule, therefore not taking the 'high road' in fixing the issues. Ditto for the Starter/Generator.

There will never be enough time to do things right the first time at Eclipse, but the management precludes things from being done right the second or third time.

Thanks for 'Keeping it Real' Cold & Wet.

EA50 said...

Everyone here will want to take a look at this nice video of the Eclipse new training facility and Level 6 FTD:

Black Tulip--The FTD is sitting up in the air on a fixed base because it will get a full-motion base later on that makes it a Level D simulator.

sparky said...

Ken Meyer said...
hummer asked,

"What I would like to know if AvioNG permits single pilot part 135 operation."

Yes. The only missing element for Part 135 single-pilot operation in the current planes is full-functionality of the autopilot. Avio NG corrects that deficiency.


1:55 PM, September 14, 2007

sparky said...
Ken stated:

"Avio NG corrects that deficiency."

It’s nice to see you finally recognizing deficiencies within the avio system.

From the “for what it’s worth” file, shouldn’t you have stated that there are countless engineers burning through untold millions trying desperately to get the system certified?

Or do we just gloss over the little details?

Ken, hope you don't mind my taking the liberty or re-posting your admittance of an "avio diffeciency"

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...


Thank you for your predictable picking of nits as it highlights several points for me.

LED's and micro-switches
Rather than quote out of context Ken I suggest you read the entire document - you should enjoy it as much as a Southern Baptist reading John 3:16 - within the first several pages the primary focus is on certain systems and they mention LED's and micro-switches more often than anything else beyond the ever-present LRU and 'high-utilization'.

I toured the HALT Lab at Eclipse during the timeframe in questions, when the toilet paper was written - there was NO temperature variation equipment, no meatlockers, no ovens, no vaccuum chambers - it was a glorified closet attached to the engineering simulator bay. When asked about the plans for the HALT Lab the helpful Eclipse person said it was completed and they were using it, specifically calling it a HALT Lab - not a marketing\PR person, an engineer who's name escapes me and even if I could recall I would not name them.

Beta Aircraft
Ken would like to argue over 500 or 600 hours when he actually proved my point. The entire fleet had the same time that Eclipse stated would be flown JUST on the Beta aircraft. Instead of about 3000-3500 hours depending on which source you use (deuling press releases, the old 'transparency' status sheets on the website, etc.). Should that not then have been more like 6500 hours with test aircraft AND the Beta's? That is what Dr. Masefield told me at that time.

Imagine the embarassment they could have prevented at AOPA and subsequently had they actually followed through on this lofty ideal - they would have discovered the wing bushing issue and cracking transparencies problem well before AOPA, and could have announced the fix as a 'benefit' of their 'commitment' to testing in advance of customer delivery - but no.

Thanks Ken, even when you are wrong, you are right.

gadfly said...

Let’s see if I understand this correctly. It’s OK to fly a 170 pound “extra pilot” around the country side (or Florida swamps) until the wonderful avionics are fully approved, but it’s not OK to fly around about twenty pounds of “steam gages” . . . just in case.

And an “aside”: Our computer man, who heads a group at Sandia National Labs, recommends waiting until about January for Service Pack One, before converting to Vista . . . makes you wonder which Service Pack will fix any bugs on AVIO NG (assuming such a thing is possible . . . “bugs”, that is).


(9Z . . . the KOB news item said far more than was intended . . . but I thought better of my response . . . “You will not be able to tell the difference whether or not you're flying the airplane or flying the simulator. They will be 100 percent identical," said Peg Billson of Eclipse Aviation. That, my friend, is a gem waiting for a “setting”!)

(One other thing . . . back in the 1950's, it was unthinkable to send critical components to Lockheed, Douglas, Boeing, Sikorsky, and others, until complete testing had been properly completed in cold altitude chambers and vibration transducers, under full loads, etc. Aren’t you all glad? . . . you have all enjoyed safe travel, without a single failure from the components of which I speak.)

BD5 Believer said...


Thanks for the clarification, and I agree with your count, change of registration is what counts, regardless where the a/c goes from there.

airtaximan said...

regarding designed for high cycle...

Nothing about this plane is new or revolutionary...especially not the aero or the materials, etc. There is zero challenge for this company to produce a highly durable plane, without cracking right out of the box.

The truth is, they have tried to keep the plane as cheap as possible.

- Their avionics failed, already.
- The original design point engine failed, already.
- FSW is a system that has yet to be proven over the long haul for durability, and has some risk.

Any engineer out there that would like to provide a rank on a scale from 1-10 (ten being as serious as Boeing or Embraer) regarding how serious e-clips was ever regarding designing the plane for high cycle durability... please do so.

I think its evident that everything took a back seat to low cost. The avionics were a computer-freaks dream of a flying computer, and I'm sure he thought he could just make cheaper avionics... the engine was small, frail and cheap... FSW saves time (nice story) and this reduced cost.

I'd say no major design decision was based on durability for high cycle...none.

I give them a 1, or 2. I think every other manufacturer concentrates more on this aspect.

From a taxi perspective, I say, no way.

Ken Meyer said...

coldwet wrote,

"I toured the HALT Lab at Eclipse during the timeframe in questions, when the toilet paper was written"

Sounds like you're confusing the Integration Lab with the HALT Lab. The HALT Lab is where the company does the high and low temperature testing. What you wrote was just baloney.

Beta Aircrft--Eclipse says their pre-certification test hours far exceed what other companies typically have done in the past. 3600 hours does seem like a lot of pre-certification flight testing. Cessna reported 1300 hours on the Mustang fleet shortly before certification.

The high number of flight test hours is of course why the bushing and window issues were identified and corrected early on rather than waiting until the customer fleet showed signs of the problems. It's a better approach; I commend them for it.


anonymous avionics engineer said...

I don't remember exactly, but I think thermal chambers weren't in the HALT lab until late 2004.

Design for high cycle time? ATM you are being way too generous.

airtaximan said...

From an engineer:

1-2 out of 10... way too generous.


airtaximan said...

anyone who says this, and says the pane WAS DESIGNED for high cycle durability, is well... I guess, a die-hard buyer.

"The high number of flight test hours is of course why the bushing and window issues were identified and corrected early on rather than waiting until the customer fleet showed signs of the problems."

If you think the plane was designed for durability, and the intial planes showed bushing cracking that required a re-design, and window cracking that required a re-design, two fairly simple designs... and you commend the company, somehow...

These are early signs of problems, Ken... imagine how the plane was designed, really. I mean, THINK about it, hard... try to forget the PR and BS, and just THINK...

Black Tulip said...


Thanks for reviewing the white paper. I liked the quote in the introduction:

“If Eclipse had used the traditional “tried and true” approach to aircraft design, it would have yielded the same results as these earlier generations of aircraft – i.e., unacceptably high maintenance costs and excessive aircraft downtime.”

Maybe, but the finished aircraft might be flying by now.

Further along in the white paper it is very reassuring to see that the bleed air de-ice valve has an MTBF of 125,000 hours while the MTBF of the fire detection system is 200,000 hours. This should take current and future owners well into the next millennium.

Black Tulip

planet-ex said...

Everyone here will want to take a look at this nice video of the Eclipse new training facility and Level 6 FTD:

Black Tulip--The FTD is sitting up in the air on a fixed base because it will get a full-motion base later on that makes it a Level D simulator.

It's not sitting on a fixed based, it's sitting on a few aircraft jacks (not the most stable thing to have it sit on).

Putting a motion base under the sim does not make it a Level D simulator; FAA certification makes it a Level D. Who knows? It might not make Level D on the first or second round of certification trials.

Is it a Level 6 FTD? Did the FAA certify it? If it is finally certified Level D, it also will require European certification.

At the rate they are going, I don't predict Level D certification under late 2007/early 2008.

airtaximan said...


do the other VLJs have higher maintenance cost (projected) in their hourly programs than e-clips' recently upped by 35% JetIncomplete numbers?

Somehow, I cant help but think reliabilty for e-clips vs say Mustang or Embraer P100 will suck, same with real maintenance cost.

vcreporter said...

BTW I heard through the grapevine that Mike Press (owner/pilot of #3) has 200 hours in his POS unreliable e-clips in 3 months (>70 hours each month, on track for > 800 hrs/yr) and despite there only being 2 service centers, has had only 1 incident (in > 100 flights) where he was in a AOG situation (aircraft on ground) and had to wait for maintenance (fixed on site in < 24 hrs). For serial number 3 not bad. Better than 99% dispatch reliability. Wonder if the Mustang is even close, or are they grounded due to Garmin 1000 issues right now ;-)

airtaximan said...


when you post accusations, and ask questions and folks here address them, and you never follow up - it makes us think you are not sincerely asking questions, and you are just posting accusations for affect.

I'll let your re-post of your last post stand for itself. I guess it impressed you so much, you had to repost it...

vcreporter said...

"airtaximan said...

do the other VLJs have higher maintenance cost (projected) in their hourly programs than e-clips' recently upped by 35% JetIncomplete numbers?

Somehow, I cant help but think reliabilty for e-clips vs say Mustang or Embraer P100 will suck, same with real maintenance cost.

6:24 PM, September 14, 2007


at least I presented some data based on a real plane (#3), not just the typical "trash eclipse, we have nothing better to do with our time" accusation.

airtaximan said...


your new here... my record is good.

I asked a question and gave my opinion...

In your previous post where you accused the supporters of trashing e-clips and provided specific examples that were wrong... I provided answers to you, as did many of the others.

I'm just trying to see if you are asking questions to create open discussion, in which case, you are interested in the answer, or if you are just posting inaccurate things and nonesense for some purpose other than a dialogue.

Its becoming very clear...

Gunner said...

One minute you call it "grapevine" rumor. The next it's "real data".

I'm sorry, but that's hallmark rationale of some starting with a conclusion and looking for snippets to fit.


airtaximan said...


imagine anyone thinking they are "informed" and have "data" and they think the Mustang is grounded?

Maybe this is a relative of Ken trying to help him?

I guess he thinks he knows how much TLC Mike Press' plane has received, too? He probably has all the maintenance records...

He'impressed with turn around AOG time, when the guy is a salesman and reports e-clips progress in print... has an affect on the market directly, and there are almost no other e-clips planes in the field to help, at that time.

Perhaps he also knows how many flights Mike Press planned, and could not fly due to Avio not being finished, or other reasons...?

I love data....

... I'll just leave it at that.

Black Tulip said...

On re-reading the white paper, I am reassured that the auto-throttle motors probably will last a very long time and will not go berserk at an inopportune moment.

I’m embarrassed that I did not think of something sooner. The pilots flying the early Eclipse models have an advantage. This relates to the Minimum Equipment List (MEL). If the aircraft has one, the pilot must consult it regarding inoperative equipment. If permitted by reference to the list, the flight may be conducted with something broken and long as an entry is made in the MEL and the system is labeled INOP with a prominent label.

I’ve read here that a number of systems are inoperative on the current Eclipse, and these are labeled INOP. Doesn’t it make sense that with more and more devices inoperative, the aircraft becomes more reliable as there is less to break? Why didn’t the established manufacturers think of this?

Black Tulip

vcreporter said...

gunnar and airtaximan

so you are trying to make the point that everything you write on this blog is unbiased, has no agenda, and is based on fact and data? hehehehe

airtaximan mr "data in action":

"I think its evident that everything took a back seat to low cost...

I'd say no major design decision was based on durability for high cycle...none."


Exe said:
"Looks like the owner of N858GS (SN000039) has been enjoying his airplane to the tune of 9 flights in the last 3 days"

If he were enjoying it so much, you think is average flight would last longer than 68.25 minutes.

Yes Gunner, e-clips is meant for short hops- DayJet model, small business owners, etc. That is what people will use the plane for. Missions for which the airlines are ineffective (no direct flights, not frequent enough), driving takes too long- can't get there and back same day. duhhhh

"airtaximan said...

Remember, Ken can identify NO risk with the e-clips.

The state of mind of "die-Hard" buyer.

1:44 PM, September 12, 2007"

And Gunnar and airtaximan and stan will NEVER state anything positive.

How about taking some shots at Bob Crandall (of Pogo)- after all I know for certain EACH of you are more successful than he has been in your business careers!! Also more successful than Ed Iacobucci, Harold Poling, Alfred Mann, Kent Kresa, Paul Allen, etc. etc. etc.

Now DON'T FREAK OUT, I'm just providing some fun banter, and enjoying how you guys lash out!

[Get a life, or get successful enough to at least afford a $2 million plane (yes, I know, I know, not an e-clips ;-)] !

(The Eclipse #3 data was second hand but verified, I won't call it real data unless I have seen the logs myself, but the source is reliable.)

airtaximan said...


think this guy works on Wall Street and someone told him to go to this blog and post some stuff to help POGO's IPO?

BTW, anyone have a look at the DirectIPO they are doing, for $100 million. Man, this is going to be sweet.

Looks like a handfull of guys... a business plan, and 5 years of waiting...going for $100,000,000.

They will buy the e-500's, some they take delivery in early 2009 (how, they have not even made the order yet?) if they raise the IPO money...


redtail said...

AirTaxiMan said... the engine was small, frail and cheap.

You keep making this comment. Mouse claims otherwise, it was a big success. Where's the disconnect between our two most "reliable" sources?

airtaximan said...

notice the time of my post and VC reporter's...

somehow, I knew this guy was probably trying to help POGO's IPO...

nice one!

VC, everyone here knows Gunner and me for a long time. Like I replied politely (before I thought you were probably shilling for Pogo's IPO) I have not posted anything like what you have contended...I do not think the performance or the certifications were tough, for any company over 10 years and $1.x billions... you were wrong on that.

Bloggers have been on side with using IMO, I believe, IMHO, I think, etc.... and an opinion...

If you do not like this, sorry, but we all have opinions.

You just need to get used to it, be careful what you attribute to whom, and understand the difference between data, facts and your opinion, or even PR from e-clips.

I hope the IPO goes well...some of the Pogo guys look like cool folks, especially the guy from People Express. Crandall will probably create more problems for GA than its worth... but Pogo could be a cool company.

Any idea on their price points for the jet? If its anywhere near $2000/hour... well, we've already crossed that bridge here many times.

airtaximan said...

redtail, trust Mouse on that one... if he says the engine was designed for high cycle operations, durability and reliability, perhaps he knows more than me.

All I know is, it failed regarding its acceptability to e-clips. Reports are it was unreliable and it never worked for more than a little while...

But trust him - he was there.

I saw the compresson at NBAA, and I cannot imagine the engine ever providing reliable use - just my less-informed opinion regarding the frail blades the size of a fingernail.

Mouse and I are not the same, and you make a good point - I guess he knows best.

airtaximan said...


careful, Paul Allen was never involved in e-clips.

He knew Vern.

He saw the plan first.

He said "no".

You seem like a cool promoter, I mean guy - inform yourself, and be careful what you write. MAny folks here have been around this program for a long time. They will notice when your facts are wrong.

Heck, Ken will even just tell you you are wrong, without ANYthing to back up his opinion. what VC firm do you work for? We can save you guys a lot of time, money and heartache! Heck, you'll probably get a promotion!

Gunner said...

We waste our time, I think. He is what he writes.

Gunner said...

He also fails to do his homework

vcreporter said...


Peg Billson -
Vice President and General Manager of Honeywell International, Inc., Aircraft Landing Systems division. VP of Engineering for Honeywell Engines, Systems & Services; VP of Program Management for Honeywell’s Aerospace Equipment Systems; and VP of the MD-11, MD-80, and MD-90 programs at McDonnell Douglas.

Dr. Oliver Masefield -
VP of Research and Development of Pilatus Aircraft, where he was responsible for technical innovation for Pilatus products worldwide. (During his tenure at Pilatus, Masefield managed development and certification of the highly successful PC-12 corporate/utility aircraft as well as the development of the PC-7 and PC-9 military training aircraft.)

J. Mark Borseth -
3M vice president of global business processes, corporate treasurer, president and general manager of 3M’s Canadian operation

Saul Pacheco, Jr. -
Global Director of Quality and Reliability for medical technology leader Medtronic, where he was responsible for all products released to the medical marketplace, and where he led the evaluation of manufacturing processes, documentation, controls, and procedures.

John Ricciardelli -
Bell Helicopter executive director of commercial development programs
Ricciardelli’s cross-functional team won the Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter Program. They delivered a flying development aircraft in less than nine months.
Honeywell- established a support network for multiple turbofan engines used in business aircraft.

Bob Crandall-
CEO AMR, American Airlines

Ed Iacobucci-
Founder, CEO, Citrix

Harold Poling-
CEO Ford

Kent Kresa-
Chairman & CEO Northrup, Sr. Advisor, the Carlyle Group

Alfred Mann-
In 1956, founded Spectrolab, the first of his aerospace companies. While at Spectrolab, an electrooptical systems company, he also founded Heliotek, a semiconductor company, that became a major supplier of solar cells for spacecraft. Mann's companies provided the electric power for over 100 spacecraft for the free world and constructed one of the lunar experiments. Sold both companies to Textron in 1960 (merged into one, Spectrolab is now a subsidiary of Boeing Satellite Systems), continued to manage them until 1972.
Founded Pacesetter Systems, which focused on cardiac pacemakers, sold that company in 1985 and managed it until 1992. It is now a part of St. Jude Medical.
Mann then went on to establish MiniMed (insulin pumps and continuous glucose devices, now owned by Medtronic) and Advanced Bionics (neuroprosthetics, owned by Boston Scientific.
Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of MannKind Corporation, a biomedical company working on a unique inhalable insulin for the treatment of diabetes and therapeutic vaccines for cancer;
founder and Chairman of Second Sight, a biomed company working on a retinal prosthesis;
founder and Chairman of Bioness, a company devoted to applying electrostimulation for functional neural defects such as paralysis;
founder and Chairman of the Board of Quallion, LLC, a company producing high reliability batteries for medical products and for the military and aerospace industries;
Chairman of Stellar Microelectronics, an electronic circuit manufacturer for the medical, military and aerospace industries;




The readers of this authoritative, factual, information filled blog want to understand your accomplishments and credentials so they can factor that into consideration of your statements!!!

Gunner said...

You wanna measure penises? Try a men's Bath House. Personally, I'm less interested than I am impressed...and I'm hardly impressed.

Next time, do your homework.

Now back to the topic, please.

Metal Guy said...

I was looking at the white paper on reliability – They state that “the electrical power distribution system (EPDS) has been designed to provide redundancy and high reliability (10X-9) to the aircraft."

For those smarter than me, does that really come out to something like 11,000 YEARS of continuous operation with no failure?

If so, wow, I'm really impressed.

bill e. goat said...

While I admire your enthusiasm, your manner leaves me less than enthusiastic.
An obvious one, albeit a bit tiring...:


(Don't bother answering, it's a rhetorical construct).
Basically, the blog seems to evaluate everyone's comments, and inferred competence, by coorboration- not by pedigree or resume.
(And BTW, Stan's credentials are noted on the blog "home page").
Anway, not to splash cold water on your recent visits (CWMOR might take exception to that, however:)
VCR- welcome aboard matey!

Black Tulip said...


Your list of resumes reminds me of the old story about the troubled dog food company. I’ll cut to the punch line.

The quarter has ended and the financial results are not good. A business review meeting is called. The CEO has heard presentations from department heads, and each brags about the state-of-the-art company.

He stands and asks, “If we have the best factory, the finest ingredients, efficient distribution, knowledgeable marketing and aggressive sales… then how come we’re doing so poorly? We’re losing money.”

From a dark corner of the conference room came a quiet voice, “Well sir, the dogs won’t eat it.”

Black Tulip

airtaximan said...


unfortunately, we've already been scrubbed by the die-hards on this blog.

I myself have been accused of having a mole or being a mole inside e-clips. That's how good my intel is. Someone almost lost $10k betting me on the orderbook's dependence on Dayjet before it came out. I know a little about your aren, too - I told folks here there was an IPO coming out soon... before yours, I mean it was out.

Regarding your last post:
1-why not include the magic man hisself, Vern? He runs the show.
2-why not include some executives from the crappy companies that have been thrown under the bus by your wonderful team, like United for training, or say Avidyne for avinics, or say Williams for engines? How are their resumes? They all failed according to your team.
3- Anyhow, one final point on all this - terrific people make mistakes. Investors make mistakes all the time - heck, even some terrific wealthy folks, like the Enron guys or say the Worldcom guys, have wonderful resumes, and long history of success before they run into problems...

I admire your attempt to discredit us, by using their credentials... its the lowest form of evidence you could try to dig up for the e-clips program success... look at the men, not the product, or the business. Any good recent Ivy League student looking to get in good with a Wall Street firm would end up taking the same approach, I'm sure - that is, if they knew nothing about aviation, had not paid much attention, and had an agenda they desperately needed to pursue.

Here, we just like to bat the issues around, mainly how they are almost broke again, how I am sure (opinion) Vern WILL raise more money, how the air taxi models are going to have a rough time, although it would be great if they succeed, how screwed up the company is regarding making and keeping promises, like the delivery scedule that is so way off its hard to believe they could ever revise it again with anyone caring, and of course, how all the fixes and trashed systems have been called "uprades" or NG (some folks here say NFG, I just like the ring of AVIONG...a new word, meaning the replacement of a system worked on for 10 years and $Xmillions and replaced with off the shelf systems - sounds like a rebound back to reality.

Enjoy. I hope Pogo rasies their money...then I can noodle on how in heavens sake they ever got positions in 2009, when thousands of people are in line since 2002 or so?

Hmmm... I guess I'm no Al Mann...

bill e. goat said...

In my book- You Da Mann!

(And good call on the IPO subterfuge).

poking and having fun ;-) said...

"Gunner said...
You wanna measure penises? Try a men's Bath House. Personally, I'm less interested than I am impressed...and I'm hardly impressed.


hehehehe looks like I'm getting under someone's skin! how mature Gunner, bringing the size of your (I'm sure every very very BIG) penis into the discussion (penis was your word, not mine, please note). I'm guessing this will help the popularity and seriousness of your blog, guys!! hehehehehe

redtail said...

AirTaxiMan said... All I know is, it failed regarding its acceptability to e-clips. Reports are it was unreliable and it never worked for more than a little while...

But trust him - he was there.

I saw the compresson at NBAA, and I cannot imagine the engine ever providing reliable use - just my less-informed opinion regarding the frail blades the size of a fingernail.

Mouse and I are not the same, and you make a good point - I guess he knows best.

In otherwards... You were WRONG??? Hardly a reliable source, as you continue to remind us.

bill e. goat said...

Watch out, it's Friday night and the drunks are out.

Ooops! Looks like they're in too!

(I've been accused, ah, sometimes incorrectly, of that myself! :).

paul said...

Will you please stop using that annoying font. It does not make what you say true.

paul said...

And now we have another idiot named poking (or getting poked) that somehow thinks that using a heavy font makes him important.

Gunner said...

He's baiting, guys.
Agressing when treated politely; puffing his personal accomplishments when called.

He's most assuredly not a poker player; or even a long term survivor. Anorher newcomer trying to divert the discussion away from Eclipse.

Mustn't play with your food. ;-)

Metal Guy said...

Wetfish can surely do this - what does a reliability of (10X-9) mean in terms of time to failure ( people in years, not dog years or vern years).

Metal Guy said...

It’s also interesting to note in the white paper so little emphasis about vendor selection and oversight. I know in the interactions we have had with Cessna, it was amazing what quality systems were required to be in place before they would even consider you a candidate as a vendor. It goes well beyond the minimums required by the FAA.

I believe what Cessna has learned over the years about building a reliable aircraft is as much about initial design goals (like the Eclipse White Paper) as it is about selecting quality vendors and managing those vendors very closely. Trust me, all of those high MTBF LED’s don’t mean squat if the connector holding them in was not fabricated correctly.

Having gone through many of the vendor selections for the EAC, trust me, the last subject to come up was vendor quality standards and processes. 98% of the selection criteria came down to price, weight and availability. Period.

I suspect that this naiveté is at the root cause as to why Eclipse is having such trouble on the production floor now (years later) – just trying to find parts that fit, function properly or don’t break when power is applied. As Cessna knows well, vendor quality escapes will grind the floor to a halt, regardless of magically high MTBF numbers. Units DOA on the production floor will have a direct correlation with long term reliability in the field – it has to.

A fluffy investor-targeted white paper on aircraft reliability makes a great read for those that have not been around the block, but it does not make a reliable airplane by a long shot. Regardless of whether it was printed on glossy paper or toilet paper.

mouse said...

Ken, as usual you are way off target. It does not matter how many hours other OEM's put on their fleets, Vern promised a stupidly high number, and he failed to deliver.

But you keep believing, and keep making your woosh, woosh jet souns while sitting in your hangar..

mouse said...

The failed bushing and cracking windshields were found by mistake, and not from inspections or high cycle time testing... But its a good story.....

Sorry Ken...

mouse said...

Black Tulip, just for giggles..

the first 5 bleed air valves failed out of the box, they never worked..

and the fire detection system failed about 10 days ago when the bottles discharged on the line...

Maybe they started the clock 10 years ago when the program first had dreams....

mouse said...


the EJ22 was small, not robust (frail) and very low cost (cheap)..

The disconnect is between your mouth and your brain...

mouse said...

The EJ22 would have been a fine engine for a $800K, 4 place, twin jet engine airplane that would fly about 200 hours per year, which is what its original design point was.

When Eclipse started adding in all of these "features", weights, grand ideas and plans, Etc. the plane outgrew the engines. We knew this before we left Walled Lake for Albuquerque but the issue was kept quiet to keep panic from setting in, and deposits from getting held back...

Had Williams developed the FADEC, and not Eclipse, the EJ22 would be a great engine for its price range, as long as you understood it was not robust enough to be a high utilization commercial airplane (fine for private, low time use), Etc.

And if any of the people here who are not critics (but if they are not critics why are they even here griping about those of us who are?) would engage some small portion of their brains, maybe they can explain why the stunt using the Teledyne rocket engines...???

It was NOT to prove the aerodynamics as Vern and Ken would lead you to believe, because no changes were made during or after that stunt. The aerodynamic changes occured after the plane failed to make speed and range, about 2 years after the stunt.

mouse said...

VCReporter.. you published a nice list of managers and supervisors of people who designed and developed the great things your listed people got the credit for...

Kind of like blaming your Mother for anything bad you ever did, or praising her for anything right you ever did...

Nice try though..

cj3driver said...

VCR said; (re: dispatch)

“ … Wonder if the Mustang is even close, or are they grounded due to Garmin 1000 issues right now …”


Unfortunately, the history of Mr. Press’s $2 million dollar jet plane (Eclipe #3) is blocked on flight aware. I guess it really doesnt matter that much anyway, since it was restricted to VFR flights only for the first few months. Flightaware only tracks aircraft in the IFR system.

However, the first customer Mustang (N600DE) is not blocked and has been flying proudly for all the world to see. It has logged some 100 IFR flights. None back to the factory. The longest distance flown is 1,400 nm in 4:04. The longest time airborne is 4:14.

Regarding POGO:

“Unlike the scheduled carriers or long-haul jet charters, “For the most part we’re not going to be in Class B airspace,” Crandall said, because the company’s aircraft are going to be operating below 18,000 feet due to the relatively short legs being flown.”

VC, ... you need to show Crandall the Eclipse AFM. 18K is not a particullarly efficient altitude for a jet. Maybe he doesnt know there is a fix for the pitot AD.

Jim Howard said...

or are they grounded due to Garmin 1000 issues right now

There are comparisons between the Mustang and Eclipse that are favorable to the Eclipse. That's not in my opinion one of them.

If you are an EA-500 booster you really don't want to compare avionics installations.

Anonymous said...

Re: Mustang and Garmin G1000

According to news reports, no Mustangs were affected by the G1000 problem. Cessna had enough good parts and other work to do that their Mustang production was not affected either, unlike poor Columbia.


FlightCenter said...

Diamond announced the first flight of their second DJet yesterday.

They were up for 43 minutes, climbed to 11,000 feet, retracted the gear and had serial #1 flying chase. The test pilots reported no problems.

Peter Maurer had a very carefully worded statement.

"S/N 002 represents the production configuration aerodynamically and in structural design."

"In parallel, we are currently building the next 3 aircraft which will all participate in the certification test program."

Sounds like S/N 2 is not a conforming prototype.

D-JET S/N 002 First Flight

redtail said...

Mouse continues to maintain that... "Had Williams developed the FADEC, and not Eclipse, the EJ22 would be a great engine for its price range, as long as you understood it was not robust enough to be a high utilization commercial airplane (fine for private, low time use), Etc."

While Airtaximan asserts that "the engine was small, frail and cheap" and a total failure. He then concedes that he does not REALLY know what he's talking about and says "redtail, trust Mouse on that one".

Well, if the engine is a great as Mouse claims why hasn't Williams designed the correct FADEC and sold it for use on a great 2-place or light four place? Because the neither form of the FJ22 could be designed to work reliably.

airtaximan said...


As I suggested to you, if you are lookinf for highly credible INSIDE info on the engne, you will not get it here, you might get it from Mouse.

My opinion is based on what I read in the press... its my opinion.

Mouse, has his...

Perhaps you have mORE insight, or is your point that MOuse and I apparenlty are not 100% aligned on the issue of how robust a platform the EJ22 was?

Perhpas you have greater insight into the engine, from a more informed position? Perhaps you KNOW something, other than MOuse and I have differing opinions?

...and BTW, I do not think our opinions are that different. I say the engine was frail and would never be highly reliable for taxi service... Mouse seems to think it could have worked for a personal aircraft.

I just look to the FACT that e-clips could NOT make it work for whatever reason, and chalk it up another e-clips failure.

So, what's your opinion on the failed engine?

airtaximan said...


"S/N 002 represents the production configuration aerodynamically and in structural design."

Sounds like they were trying to make sure that after certification, their customers would not need structural redesign and fixes, not aero modifications to meet performance.

A few years ago, this would have been a given in the industry.

Gunner said...

AT & FC-
No inside information to support my opinion, but based on the useful load at present, I expect what they're hedging is the power plant.

As I understand it, the engine being used for The Jet is the same, dimensionally, as the current D-Jet Engine; but offers greater thrust. Last I checked it was not yet thru certification.

Unless Diamond can hit all of their projected numbers on the money, I'm expecting to see the larger engine in final certification.

I won't go as far as to explain the beauty of LRU Powerplants, however. ;-)


Stan Blankenship said...

Posted early this morning against the August 31 thread. Brought forward for better visibility.

20yearmechanic said...
Ok, here is the scoop from my heart. I hate to bag on ECLIPSE as my heart has been in this program from the start. I have worked in this industry for 20 years with BOEING, Mc DD, Lear Jet, Bombardier and a few others. I wanted to belive in the ECLIPSE Philosophy and the whole concept of there biz plan. I came here to make a difference only to be stonewalled by incompetent management and complete idiots with no concept of how a aircraft is built. This program is so mismanaged I don’t know where to begin. Lets start with Randy Moon, this guy gets off on firing employees just to make himself look like a hard ass. Two weeks ago a new contractor was fired by one of his henchmen leads because he could not get a print off the computer. He was not trained on the very complex SAP computer program that is used to do all there production record keeping. Another guy that was a good proven mechanic was fired for saying the word MEXICAN. He also knew more than the lead he worked for and Im sure it had more to do with the intimidation factor, as the leads are easily intimidated because they don’t know anything. The quality of the tip tanks is HORRABLE. I was sent to SP 2 to help them get the line moving starting on AC#52 and spent 11 hours reworking all the BAD and SH***Y rivets that the day crew installed. I hate to say this, but this aircraft SHOULD NEVER BEEN CERTIFIED by the FAA. About 35% of the drawings wont conform to the actual production that is being done. Everything is fudged and the Engineering is too lazy to correct the drawings that are being used for production. They wont learn to get there sh*t together until one of these planes gets put into the dirt. We have nick named this Aircraft YUGO JET, as it has the same quality as a YUGO. It all hit me when I saw John Travolta AC#47 come down the line. I would feel like crap if anything where to happen to him in this jet. Then I started to think even harder about other people who will fly these jets, some of you people I think about are on this page. I in good conscience can not go on at ECLIPSE knowing what I know about this plane. I am not a disgruntled Employee, but a mechanic with a conscience. As of 9-28-07 I am leaving ECLIPSE to go to The Isle of Wight in England, to work on and assemble the new VLJ from EADS. It is for less money, but my pride and conscience and your safety is worth more that any amount of money. IF you are an owner or in line to buy, and you have questions that you want from a guy that actually works there. FELL FREE TO E-Mail me at: don’t ask what that means as it is a long story. I plan to go to the media next week before I leave and expose this program and all the issues that it has. It will be complete with pictures and drawings that is sure to piss off the FAA.

Good luck my friends, and FLY SAFE.


3:37 AM, September 15, 2007
20yearmechanic said...
Hey Ken

One more thing, I care about you as a human. I only post this because I care about people. The reality is that MR FORD, the new production manager from FORD, has set a goal of 219 planes by January. They wont make 119 by January. The people that are working there are being overworked 10 to 12 hours a day 6 to 7 days a week with corrupt data they call prints. They have the highest employee turnover rate of any aircraft company in the industry and that even includes MOBIL AEROSPACE and TIMCO. The employees that they do have 75% don’t have a clue and only have about 2 years experience if that. You can say all you want about the ECLIPSE 500 and all its performance, but if it goes into the dirt? Well you know the deal. I wanted to save this little tid bit for the media next week, but I let you in on a little secret. I was sent with 6 other guys from SP11 to go op to SP 2 to replace all the rivets that worked loose during production. YES THAT IS RIGHT KEN. When the fuselage is trucked up to SP 2 from the SP 11 facility, many of the HUCK CLINCH RIVETS (PULL RIVETS) worked loose or where already loose, but bought off by inspection anyway. If these rivets are not caught by someone before the plane goes to paint, the paint will be all that is holding them in place. Sorry, Im not being an ass, just stating facts. Email me Ken and we will do lunch and Ill share some Cell Phone Camera and Video with you.

Fly Safe.


4:03 AM, September 15, 2007

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Metal Guy,

10X-9 means slightly different things depending on whether you are talking basic reliability or system safety.

For reliability it is effectively mean-time-between-failure (MTBF) which is the most common term for defining reliability, and it would equate to one failure per billion hours (and understand that nothing even appraches this in reality, not aircraft structure, nothing - a very good MTBF is in the 100,000 to 500,000 hour range, and some like structures are good in the million hour range, or 10X-6).

In system safety terms, 10X-9 is shorthand for an economic 'cost-vs-lives lost' calculation commonly used in system safety assements (SSA) for commercial airliners that for a particular system there will be less than one loss of life per billion operating hours.

It sounds like a lot I know, but safety and reliability calculcations look at the entire, combined aircraft for exposure, that is, the safety critical systems are additive. In other words, if you have 10 systems at 10X-9, in laymans terms you will lose one life every 100 million hours - still a lot, but nowhere near a billion. The plane would be a 10X-8 in this example.

For an example to illustrate the additive effect, in reliability terms, if there is a certain part with a very high MTBF of say 100,000 hrs, and there are 10 units in each plane, that system has an effective MTBF of only 10,000 hours on that airplane. If an airplane is operating 1000 hours per year, in simple terms, you will expect to see a failure of one of those items every 10 years.

From a reliability or system safety standpoint you must understand that these things are additive and you are limited by the least common denominator (lowest reliability component in reliability terms, or the lowest safety critical system in safety terms). In other words, a plane will only be as 'safe' or reliable as the lowest common denominator.

It is actually not uncommon for an aircraft (the highest system level evaluation), to have an MTBF of only 150-300 hours considering each and every possible piece-part failure.

In short, more puffery for the unitiated IMO, intended to obfuscate the issue and make it sound like Eclipse really knew what it was doing in terms of design for reliability by misapplying a safety term.

On another note - I am amazed at how keyed in to the situation at Eclipse Ken seems to be. He knows there was a Systems Integration Lab at Eclipse, also in the Flight Test Hangar, back in 2004 when I was shown a HALT lab, with HALT Lab on the door, called a HALT Lab by an Engineer walking me through.

I also saw the System Integration Lab, it was the lab with PEOPLE in it, with desks, and chairs and mockups of the instrument panel and such. This was NOT the HALT Lab I was shown, which was an automated test facility with NO thermal stress capability.

My recollection was verified by Anonymous who was also THERE - if they added any thermal stress equipment it was AFTER my walk through in 2004 (timeline provided in my original post), and AFTER the white paper was written and published based on Anonymous' timeframe of late '04.

One would think that a HALT Lab supporting certification would have been fully equipped and populated in 2004, I mean, they had been working since 2000 and were 'committed' to rigorous testing for 'high-reliability' in the 'high-utilization' environment.

Face it Ken, Eclipse (and you by your ever-present shilling) caught in a 'forward-looking' exaggeration at best, or a bald-faced lie at worse - AGAIN.

EA50 said...

20yr mechanic--

If you know that paint is all that is holding the rivets, aircraft exist that "SHOULD NEVER BEEN CERTIFIED by the FAA," and they're at risk to "go into the dirt"...

Why tell us?

You have an obligation to report non-conforming aircraft to the FAA inspectors.

What did the FAA inspectors say about your observations?

EA50 said...


What makes you think Vern promised a "stupidly high" number of test hours that the company failed to achieve?

bill e. goat said...

Fun with numbers...

re: (Metal Guy-to CWMOR) 1e-9 reliability.

I think in reliability-speak vernacular (?!?) it means an insignificant possibility (but not impossibility).


If there are eventually 10,000* Boeing 737's built
If each one flies 100,000** hours,
If only one crashed during that period***

The one crash would represent a 1e-9 event (in terms of likelihood per flight hour).
*I think there have been around 6000 B737's built so far, although many have been retired from service.

**I don't know what a typical "retirement" age for a 737 is, I would guess around 50K hours?

***Unfortunately, although the 737 is an exemplary airplane, there have been a lot more accidents than this (I think around 7 for the rudder problem alone- Boeing aficionado's will argue that one), so the above scenario of a single crash is a hypothetical case for the sake of illustration.
I heard, a few years- and probably a couple thousand 737's ago- that at any time, there are 1000 737's airborne- impressive, eh?****
(...Maybe there's more to the 737 poster on the wall in the background of the ECJ development facility than we thought... :)

****Maybe an urban legand? Donno- seems plausible, and it was represented to me as factual. I imagine it's at least close to be being true- well within 1e-9 probability... :)

Stan Blankenship said...

And against the August 28 thread were these two comments:

20yearmechanic said...
From the inside of the factory. Menzies has SER#52 Dayjet has ser# 54,55 56,57 as I was just working on them last night. Tip Tank issues big time, too many hacks from Triumph Aviation, a company that has the contract to do them wile FUJI catches up. What a mess it is. This company wont be around to deliver AC#300 Mark my words.

5:10 AM, September 15, 2007
20yearmechanic said...
VERNSTER! I hate to say this cus I work for you, at least untill the 28th. YOU ARE NO WHERE NEER 2 A DAY unless you are on track to do it in late 2009. Your guy from FORD is a complete DUMB ASS and so is RANDY MOON. They dont know aviation as you are building planes, NOT FORDS. You are not even close to doing even 1 every other day. YOUR MANAGMENT TEAM is chasing off the good people, there going back to Cessna and Piper. I know 12 guys that have their letters from HONDA JET and are ready to move to NC in October. What ya going to do when PIPER comes to NM and takes your good people away? VERN, Just tell the truth and tell the good people you hired the WRONG GUY (FORD MAN) and your HR Dept is ran by EX Intell loosers. All the good mechanics have gone or are in the process of leaving. They took that $20.000 sign on relocation package, stayed the 6 months and then split. Your guy claims he will deliver 219 planes by January? You wont get 100 by then and you better wake up and get out of Pegs Ass. You just stated you have deliverd 75 planes to your customers? I was working on AC#54 last night! Its not even painted let alone delivered. Im there and I know, TRUST ME VERN, I so wanted to belive in the whole program and was so dedicated to it all, I truly had my heart into it all. The SP 11 Managment team is a JOKE and the TIP TANK program is a Fiasco up at SP2. Well Vern, Im off to the Isle of Wight in England to do EADS VLJ as of September 28th Im gone. SORRY SUR. You can thank TODD and RANDY MOON for that. Another good mechanic leaving the ship.

Sorry Again Sur.


5:43 AM, September 15, 2007

Ken Meyer said...


Your claim was:

"Eclipse boasts of having a Highly Accelerated Life Test (HALT) Lab - too bad that unlike a 'real' HALT lab operated by a 'real' OEM, the OEnM in Albuquerque HALT lab provided no temperature variation - like say departing PHX at 118 degrees with a direct climb to FL410 (hey it is my dream, anything is possible, just ask the Faithful) - coldsoak at altitude for 2 or 3 hours, then drop into ATL. Clearly not the same, and ignoring environmental effects when claiming HALT testing is laughable at best."

I pointed out that the 2005 AOPA article described the Eclipse HALT lab temperature capabilities in detail, so now you're singing a different song:

"Um, when I went there in 2004 before they started testing, they weren't using the HALT lab yet."


Why must you guys persist in misstating things in order to knock the company and the plane??


Gunner said...


Before the personal attacks begin, let me say that I believe you as your reports square with virtually every other technical and engineering insider we've heard from. They square with what we've heard of management style and engineering inexperience.

More important, I give you GREAT credit for bravery and integrity, especially if you intend to take on the FAA in this. In a few short years, Eclipse has lowered expectations of what we expect from aircraft manufacturers and the FAA so low, that the industry is no longer recognizable.

The importance of SAFETY as the first, second and last priorities of every aircraft manufacturer cannot be understated. And that goes especially for those of us lacking the engineering background to properly analyze the product. Ken is a living example...he intends to put his wife in this jet; certain in his knowledge that it's the safest craft since the Titanic set sail.

A word of caution:
Be careful how you respond to questions here or by email. I'm fairly confident Eclipse is capable of trying to bait you into a libel claim.

If there's ever anything I can do to assist you, you can email me at


421Jockey said...

240 737s in the air on as slow Saturday morning. 1000 seems plausable on a busy day.

FlightCenter said...

20 Year said that John Travolta was going to be flying serial #47.

Serial #47 is tail number N218JT.

As of this morning, the FAA "in process" website shows that Eclipse has not yet submitted registration paperwork for serial #47.

Based on Eclipse's delivery rate, #47 ought to be delivered over the next couple weeks.

I hear that the probability that Mr. Travolta will take delivery of his jet are quite low.

We should only have a couple weeks to wait to see whether Eclipse and another high profile partner - part company.

421Jockey said...

Mr. Travolta & Eclipse parted company about 2 weeks ago. As is normally the case, there 2 versions of the story.

421Jockey said...

BTW, that is no longer the tail# on the aircraft.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...


Your consistent and DELIBERATE misrepresentation of my factual posts is truly and utterly pathetic.

In my first post replying to you I said:

"...toured the HALT Lab at Eclipse during the timeframe in questions, when the toilet paper was written - there was NO temperature variation equipment, no meatlockers, no ovens, no vaccuum chambers - it was a glorified closet attached to the engineering simulator bay"

This timeframe was then independently verified by Anonymous who worked at Eclipse, at the same time when he said:

"I don't remember exactly, but I think thermal chambers weren't in the HALT lab until late 2004.

I will state this clearly for you Brother Ken as I know your panties are surely in a bunch with the accusations coming from yet another apparently well-qualified and experienced insider about how truly dysfuncional EAC has become -
I saw a HALT Lab in 2004, about the same time this white paper was written

It was called a HALT Lab by the Engineer I was walking with

It had a sign on the door, HALT Lab

It had stuff in it that was not under any environmental stress

I also saw the Integration Test Lab

To add to the point, I asked the Engineer why there was no thermal testing gear or altitude chambers and he just shook his head, acknowledging that would normally be the case for 'real' HALT testing. Apparently the Vice President of Avionics and Electrical (another FOV if I recall, with little direct aviation experience and none with an OEM) did not think it important and had to be convinced by Dr. Masefield.

Your LIES are getting tired Ken -

BTW, when is your 'position' due to deliver?

bill e. goat said...

(I think the # I was told refered to global operations- but it still seems a little high...)

Just for comparison, can you tell how many A320's there are?

Black Tulip said...

The story of the Williams engine and Eclipse is told in an old issue of Air & Space magazine. It was supposed to be very light because it was a three spool design with one spool driving the accessories. With no gearbox it was only going to weigh 85 pounds.

Rolls Royce built a large three spool engine, the RB211 with apparently mixed results. According to the article, the problems with the Eclipse 500 began to snowball when the 85 pound Williams engine was replaced with the 260 pound Pratt & Whitney engine.

I can’t find the article in the Air & Space archives or I would post it.

Black Tulip

421Jockey said...

244 A320s enroute at this time. This a little deceiving relative to the 737 flights because the average A320 flight is around an hour or more longer than a 737 flight.

bill e. goat said...

Thanks 421!

(#&%@!! Airbus guys.
No offense to our Euro friends here...)

Oh well, come 787, good ole USA #'s will come out on top! (uh, except for maybe tonnage- and I think that's the way the carriers consider passengers anyway...:)

Gunner said...

421 said:
"Mr. Travolta & Eclipse parted company about 2 weeks ago. As is normally the case, there 2 versions of the story."

What could possibly be the issue? Travolta knows jets. He's got more money than God and was surely offered a great "value proposition".

I agree there are probably two sides to the story, but the bottom line is, for whatever the reason, he is not willing to climb into the cockpit of an EA-50X (according to 421).

Perhaps he reads this Blog?

bill e. goat said...

I don't mean this to offend or insuate anything, but maybe JT and Eclipse weren't a good "fit"???

Bio says he's 6'2", don't know how much he weighs. Could it be too cramped, or maybe not enough payload?

I would assume Vern & co did everything they could to make sure the airplane was as acceptable (complete, detailed, etc) as possible, so it's probably not a workmanship issue).

(On the otherhand, I would figure he's sat in one before...maybe a payload issue, or he's weighting, I mean waiting:) or Avio-NG or FIKI, or ?)

Ken Meyer said...


I think we're all a little tired of your misrepresentations.

You said:

"Eclipse boasts of having a Highly Accelerated Life Test (HALT) Lab - too bad that unlike a 'real' HALT lab operated by a 'real' OEM, the OEnM in Albuquerque HALT lab provided no temperature variation."

I proved you wrong. Independent verification was provided to you.

You said:

"Eclipse again tries to fool the potentially unknowing customer into believing that light bulbs and prox switches are the major cost drivers for Mx"

I proved you wrong.

You said:

"They then go on to suggest that they are somehow unique in using LED's"

Actually what they wrote was,

"Extensive use of LEDs greatly improves the reliability and dispatch availability of the aircraft while decreasing maintenance costs."

They did not say anything about being unique in that regard.

I proved you wrong.

Your said,

"And what happened to those 'Beta' aircraft? Each of 3 was supposed to fly 1000 hours resulting in learning the initial problem areas BEFORE customer deliveries."

That's wrong, too. There were never THREE beta aircraft; there were only TWO. The others were flighttest aircraft. And they flew more hours than promised at the start of the flighttest program.

You seem to have a problem getting caught writing things that are flatout wrong.


Gunner said...

Bill e-
Travolta has been mentioned as an interested party as far back as 2003, when the price was still under a million bucks. Travolta was holding a position that would suggest he was in for the sub-$1MM price. (In fact, he and Vern go way back; Vern bought a Constellation from him in the late 80's). Certainly, Travolta was familiar with the cockpit.

It would have been worth it in PR, many times over, for Eclipse to GIVE him a jet (or three!) just to have him flying one. An endorsement wouldn't even have been necessary for them to come out way on top of that exchange.

Here's what was reported in a May/June 2003 Cigar Aficionado interview:
"John Travolta expressed interest in buying one. Raburn says Eclipse Aviation holds deposits from more than 2,100 other true believers -- for the most part private pilots who've passed on the $3 million to $4 million price tag for comparable models by other builders."

On a related note, check the size of the claimed Order Book at the time. Note who was claimed to be the "True Believers". That's a far cry from selling SN 1317 in June 2006; or from moving a 1400+ SN up to the 800 range.


421Jockey said...

421 did NOT say Travolta is "not willing" to climb into the cockpit of the Eclipse. I heard 2 stories and yours was not one of them.

I am a position holder, and that, by definition, makes me biased, but unlike you, I do not change stories to suit my own position.

Perhaps this is why people (like me) who could contribute many more FACTS to the discussion are reluctant to do so.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Ken you proved me wrong not once -

Not about LED's (in fact you have avoided completely my main contention that the 'total aircraft integration' TM will be a 'total support disaster' TM), not anything else.

You would like to quibble over a couple hundred hours of TOTAL fleet experience when my crystal clear point was they claimed they would have more than twice what they ended up with - AND that had they done what they said they were going to do, they would have discovered the issues with bushings and cracking transparencies well in advance of AOPA and not had to pull a NO-SHOW at one of their most important marketing appearances. The original plan, as explained by Dr. Masefield himself was for 3 Beta planes Ken, not 2, 3 - and for each plane to accumulate AT LEAST 1000 hours each - they should have had nearly 7000 hours of testing and experience before customer delivery but they elected to make you and your cohorts the test pilots for infant mortality system failures and lessons learned.

You have now on three occasions DELIBERATELY misrepresented both what I said AND the timeline AND what other information is out there re: the Amateur Hour HALT Lab 'Lite'.

Your internal mantra has surely become:
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right
Please don't let them be right

While your false-bravado and google antics\cut-and-paste and endless PR-regurgitation might fool some folks, I know you are concerned.

Sorry bud, we are right.

You can LIE about what I wrote all you want, it does not change the facts that are there for all to see.

When is your 'position' due?

Gunner said...

I apologize if you disagree with my statement. However, it is very much in line with yours. You claim that Travolta isn't taking delivery of an EA-50X. In any other words and for whatever his reasons, that means that he's unwilling to climb into the cockpit.

If you'd prefer that I reword that as "unwilling to climb into the cockpit as an owner", I'll assent. But I think the ownership qualification was obvious, in context.

The Real Frank Castle said...

"Wonder if the Mustang is even close, or are they grounded due to Garmin 1000 issues right now"

No, they are flying around just fine, thank you.

Please keep your rumors to a minimum about dinosaurs. You are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

FlightCenter said...


What were the stories you heard?

The Real Frank Castle said...

"BTW I heard through the grapevine that Mike Press (owner/pilot of #3) has 200 hours in his POS unreliable e-clips in 3 months"

Glad to see you concur. Or are you simply reporting a factoid of sorts ?

bill e. goat said...

Ken and CWMOR,
Boys, boys, boys!
As mutually unpalatable as it might seem, I think you both might be right! :)

The Eclipse web site does mention that indeed Eclipse has two SIL's (Systems Integration Lab, and old Boeing, et al, term) for avionics development.

I think the intent was to use one for development, the other for "accelerated environmental testing"- not full qual, but thermal stressing (?maybe humidity?, probably not pressure?), and just plain "run in" time to evaluate durability.

I think Mouse or AAE said the HALT chamber didn't have the environmental equipment installed until 2004 or 2005.

And, given the ongoing testing with both Avio and Avio-NxG, I suspect BOTH SIL's are being used for development, neither for "accelerated" durability testing.

(I've seen many similar schemes to "do it on the bench". What was to be a "certification test point" bench, becomes in reality a facility to check aircraft LRU's and let the software guys do development/debug work- the original purpose of doing "certification test points on the bench" is never realized. I suspect that is the case with Eclipse).
Anyway, maybe someone (Mouse or AAE) can substantiate or correct this,

but I suspect:

CWMOR is right- there is no environmental work going on in HALT,


Ken is right, environmental work COULD be conducted (but it would interfere with higher-priority development work).

bill e. goat said...

I agree about keeping JT "on board"- think of the photo ops and exposure! You're right- GIVING him several jets would have been a bargain for Eclipse.

On the other hand, I can't see JT squirming over a few $100K, unless it was a matter of principal (ah, so to speak), so I'm not sure it was a money thing.

And as hungry for PR as Vern is, it would seem he would be sucking up to JT like a leech, so I can't imagine it would be a personality thing.

So in the end, I'm not sure why they divorced, but I take it JT didn't get "child custody" of the E-500.

The Real Frank Castle said...

"at least I presented some data based on a real plane (#3)"

Ah, so it must be fact. thanks for clearing that up.

Gunner said...

Frank Castle said:
"Please keep your rumors to a minimum about dinosaurs. You are crunchy and taste good with ketchup."

You owe me one can of Coke, Frank....and possibly a laptop!

The Real Frank Castle said...

"The Eclipse #3 data was second hand but verified, I won't call it real data unless I have seen the logs myself, but the source is reliable."

Oh now, wait a minute, are you tryin to crawdad on me ?!? Are you going to change it to "reliable information" instead of "real data" ???

I think I've just been Kenned.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Hmmmm, about 600 'reported' 'sales' in about 4 years (2100 in '03 vs current 2700), by my math, that is roughly 150 sales per year.

Good thing they have 2-a-day 'high-rate' production and all the associated tools and labor, they will need to be able to deliver all of .6 a\c per day.

But 150 sales per year does not meet the reported 500 aircraft per year breakeven point now does it.

So if they are short 350 $1.8M sales what does that mean, let's see you carry the two, cross under the bridge, round the pylon, make jet whooshy noises - why, that's a loss of about $630M per year - or -$4.2M for every aircraft they DO sell - according to the reported break-even point.

I know, they can make it up on volume.

That's the beauty of it.

The Real Frank Castle said...

well, it's still working, eh? No warranty implied here, Gunner.

I'm still trying to be nice. Since I am posting here again. And, I will leave the penis remarks alone, although I have deleted about 50 of them so far.

Gunner said...

Welcome back, Frank.
I like you much better with the cleaned up sense of humor.

As for the penis contest attempts; well, sometimes you can't help but notice.

The Real Frank Castle said...

Stan said:

"Posted early this morning against the August 31 thread. Brought forward for better visibility."

You are in the Top 5 Hero book, sir.

The Real Frank Castle said...

EA50 sez:

"20yr mechanic--

If you know that paint is all that is holding the rivets, aircraft exist that "SHOULD NEVER BEEN CERTIFIED by the FAA," and they're at risk to "go into the dirt"...

Why tell us?"

Ever read on of my posts ?

The Real Frank Castle said...

I'm gonna go off again, just for a second, to "keep it real..."

I can only hope that anybody that reads 20yr mechanics remarks will pay heed. I have personal friends that have gone that way, and seen the same things. It's kinda like the oil companies. No one either believes it, or says, "what can you do ?"

Yea, complain and be a kook of sorts, conspiracy theorist, whatever. You used your brain and common sense to surmise what has or is taking place, and said enough is enough.

Good people going down the tubes, because they "grew a brain" and fell under the bus.

Or got thrown.

But, they will be discounted by the "amused".

"Why tell us?

You have an obligation to report non-conforming aircraft to the FAA inspectors."

Why don't you take your precious aircraft to a reputable inspection facility, and show us a "QUALITY AIRPLANE ?!?!?

I can hardly wait for you to take the POS to a jet-servicing FBO for it's inspection. You DARE not take it anywhere else.

Yea, take it to a Citation Service center. We'll lose twenty good men, because they will have died of laughter.

Then, hopefully you will be able to have a loooong talk with a good mental health practitioner on recommendation of the courts.

bill e. goat said...

Okay, I swear I don't go looking for this stuff- it came up on the "most viewed today" page of Youtube comedy. And if FRANK could resist, then the rest of us should have:)

(Mostly beer, buffoons, and Elvis). Anyway, the serendipity and coincidence has overcome what little judgement and good taste I pretend to have, so with some regret, - but, well..., a timely topic, I suppose. (Fast forward to 4:00).

(I got a chuckle out of the fruit at the end:)

BTW, it makes me hope Vern hasn't made a "special deal" on saving Eclipse with you know who.

The Real Frank Castle said...

See, goat, what happens when you "expand your horizons"....

Try for some real buffoonery.

Hang in there !! You'll be "One" soon, and not a "herbert" like ol Kenny.

The Real Frank Castle said...

Oh, wait, I just had an idea for an excuse by Ken and the other "owners"....

Part of the NDA probably has a blurb in it about not taking the POS to anyone BUT eclipse for service. To do otherwise, and the MIB would swoop down and take it back, before anyone could really inspect it.

The Real Frank Castle said...

"Raburn says Eclipse Aviation holds deposits from more than 2,100 other true believers -- for the most part private pilots who've passed on the $3 million to $4 million price tag for comparable models by other builders."

Comparable models ?!?!?

Tak about "penis envy" !!

Anonymous said...

the real frank castle quoted "Cigar Aficianado" magazine, and then said:

"Comparable models ?!?!?

Tak about "penis envy" !!"

Frank, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.


airtaximan said...

curious timing on the IPO for Pogo...

- they have some money left from the initial financing... no revenue, no real systems in place, no customers, no "Advantageous orders" in place for equipment. Perhaps a few (one or two really) quality management execs, and a business plan that is nothing really new - charter with VLJs.

Almost a dotCom era IPO...

Why do an IPO now?

I think they are just afraid that the market will cool (deep freeze) if Dayjet is not successful. In such a case, the opportunity to ride the VJL taxi hype will be gone, and IPO will be really, really rough.

Perhaps they have been trying to rasie more equity, and there are no takers on Wall Street? This is their last shot at it - the general public in an OpenIPO?

Any other opinions?

Gunner said...

There's no obvious answer, other than the fact that this is not the best market for an IPO.

It could be that they think they have such a winner that it doesn't matter; could be that they are getting enormous pressure from the underwriter, due to the underwriter's need for inventory; timing could be tied to previous debt financing; could be that they feel their "story" will degrade rendering the offering a non-starter, in time.

If Whytech checks in, he may have more insight than that.

Black Tulip said...

Better for Pogo to raise the money now while the verdict is still out on DayJet and little is known about the Eclipse. If either or both tank, then Pogo will gracefully find another 'use of proceeds'.

Black Tulip

Gunner said...

Public Offerings are a funny thing, BT. It virtually NEVER makes sense to do a public offering unless you have an overabundance of opportunity and not enough money or borrowing power to fund them.

More important than that is the internal dynamic. The principals will be pressured to make use of the funds raised...enormous pressure, as a matter of fact. If they lack REAL market opportunity, they end up sacked and, often as not, far less well off than had they remained private.

Public Offerings hamstring a company's agility in the market and add a whole new layer of expenses to the equation. They are not to be taken lightly.

Apologies if it sounds like I'm preaching. That's been my experience. Take it for what it's worth.

Gunner said...

ps: Exception to my statements above. In a mature business, that's just doing gangbusters, a Public Offering makes sense as a cash-out vehicle, where you basically sell your revenue stream in the financial markets.

Pogo, doesn't appear to be in that mode.

paul said...

I concur with everything 20yr has said. I was there when they made Randy a supervisor and the change was amazing. Suddenly he was clutching a clipboard and became a total arsehole.
I think you gave too much info about yourself, the driveby gang will run over to HR and find out who you are and the personal attacks will begin. (I think HR is closed on the weekend so expect it Monday). Good luck with your new job!

bill e. goat said...

Thanks for the link to it's got a lot of funnies on it too.

BTW, I had to google Herbert, but s-u-r-e enough, Wikipedia to the rescue!(old Star Trek context, I assume :)

"an uncomplimentary description for someone with rigid and limited patterns of thought". (My, how dinosaur-ish sounding !!! :)

bill e. goat said...

Regarding Pogo IPO-Go...

Being as it's run by a former airline CEO, expect:

1) Acquire too much debt

2) Over-expand before the market is mature, by acquiring too many airplanes in anticipation of demand that never materializes.

3) Offer loss producing "cheap fares" to stimulate demand (and utilize under-tasked capital assets) in a futile effort to "make up for in volume what we lose per ticket".

4) Go bankrupt (while CEO walks with golden parachute).

Can't teach an old dinosaur- er- dog- new tricks* :)

(I agree with BT, I think they're trying to, literally, "capitalize" on the market buzz before the market reality sets in).
*Speaking AS an old dinosaur, I'm still trying to learn the old tricks, let alone the new ones...

"Old School", as I think one of Stan's email-ers kindly put it (I think), and proud of it (sort of :).

mouse said...


Its a shame you know nothing of what you speak.

The EJ22 is just waiting for a customer that has a lightweight airframe. Find someone who needs a pair of 700 Lbs/Thrust engines and they can be placing their order any day. The airplane determines the power needed, and not the other way around.

The engine has been running just fine in a high security test cell for some time now, so perhaps it is in use as we speak.

I suggest some talcum powder and petroleum jelly to keep your tail from being so red...

mouse said...

EA50 said...

What makes you think Vern promised a "stupidly high" number of test hours that the company failed to achieve?

Because he did! Read the Press Releases from Eclipse... Or wait for Ken to repost them here...

bill e. goat said...

I laughed so hard I almost turned red- ah, blushed :)

(I appreciate red tails observations though).

Along the lines of red posteriors, some have postulated that Vern can't tell his a_s from a hole in the ground. Not sure if that is true or not, butt:

Vern's Delima??

HotDog said...

Let’s play a hypothetical game for a second….

Imagine you’re a supply chain person at Eclipse that needs a part desperately. However, those parts are already in stock at Eclipse but there was an engineering change and they are no longer valid. What do you do? You call the supplier and ask for new parts, right? Wrong. Those parts are being revised once again and need re-certification and DER approval. How long does that take they ask? Well, that takes weeks. Weeks!? Yes, this is an airplane and not a computer. You can’t just call your buddies in China to crank out some piece of crap. Don’t forget this is an airplane. OK, we need the new parts ASAP. No problem, but you do know that EAC engineering has told us another change is immanent and that cut in will be at serial number such and such. What? What the hell should I order? Exactly…Good Luck. All this time, more and more obsolete inventory is pilling up. However, nobody cares at Eclipse because they only know one thing…deliver aircraft or die! We’ll worry about that other stuff later. What an unbelievable waste of precious cash.

But this is purely hypothetical of course.

Key question to the group…When does the well run dry?

airtaximan said...

regarding the EJ22, FJ22 engine...

Again MOuse was apparently in Walled LAke, and worked for E-clips... I have nothing except the PR, some expereince with engines, and some commmon sense. This whole thing intrigues me, from a number of perspectives.

1- it seems like the engine was a very intricate, complex design. I keep saying the main compressor was less than a pound, but Wiki says it was more like 1.7lbs. Still, this critical component, designed with finder nail sized blades, makes me thing "WTF?" my life is on the line...
2- Williams mentions nothing about this engine on their website. The VLJ engine apppears to be the 33 and perhaps the 44 family.
3- Vern funded continued development of the engine, and the NASA funded test demo, never happend? Why? on both counts, Why? I guess Sam Williams KNEW it was too risky, otherwise, why not continue development for this remarkable achievement and disruptive technology? Reason, he must have know that it was too risky and/or too small for the market.
4- Thrust to weight, has nothing to do with durability - and this design was touted as the record holder "thrust to weight". This aint no taix engine...not by design, not by evidence of the real workd problems.
5- wiki states that the engine burned up, and was unreliable... once again, no Sh&t... look at the engine design criteria - technology demo, thrust to weight... and the 3 spool, many many tiny blases and vanes in many stages. Looks to me to be as small and as light as possible - not designed for lifecycle cost, durability, etc..

Well, there you have my opinion on the engine. A technology demonstrator that VErn somehow based his entire program on, yet it could never really work - perhaps more time andmoney? But it does not seem like even its Father, Sam Williams believes it could work.

..unless, as I suspect, Mouse knows something "black", that we do not know...

mouse said...


Do us all a favor and go peddle your crap on some other site. You distort absolutely everything you have ever read or heard.

You are WRONG on nearly every single issue or point you have ever brought to this site as well.

You have zero knowledge on anything aviation, and all you can do is report what you have read. It is truly amazing and very lucky that you have not killed yourself or others with your amazing abilities as an aviator. I'm sure your FSI instructors have the same opinion... The dumbest thing to ever come out of your mouth was your losing an engine statement in your C-340 and then the Eclipse...

And so you can feel good, you are right, everything anybody says on this site, who is not a Kool-Aid sipper, is a lie. We all banded up and decided to spend our time screwing with you because its such great fun... NOT!

Don't go away mad, just go away... Talking to you is like teaching a pig to sing... it's a waste of time and it annoys the pig.

Gunner said...

HD asked:
Key question to the group…When does the well run dry?"

That's the $1.5 Billion Dollar question, isn't it? Credit where credit is due...Vern CAN raise money. Nothing would surprise me at this point.

But we know his last foray to the markets didn't play out too well and rumor has it a Board insider ponied up to keep the lights on. We also know that he's got to go back to the well right about now.

We know that he's hard pressed to send out any more six month Progress Payment demands, given the atrocities Eclipse has committed against its own ramp-up promises (and Depositors). Finally, we can deduce from comments like yours and others on the inside, that this company is a whole LOT of units away from ever delivering a plane at a profit.

Still, PT Barnum gets the final say on this issue.

airtaximan said...

curious timing on the IPO.... I wonder if the market will see the hitch-

Pogo's plan does not work, unless Vern's plan works... and Vern is probably looking for money oin all the same places at this point.

"Hi, I'm B Crandall, and I need $100 million so I can buy Vern's planes..."

" Yup, Vern again - I have a terrific new customer, Crandall, from American Ailrlines - yup, GA's gonna love HIM!... andhow, I need $250 million more to keep the lights on so I can begin to deliver his planes in 2009..."

Gotta be tough.

mouse said...

Hey HotDog,

That's how it was since January of 2001...!

Care to discuss more details? Let Stan know...

airtaximan said...


forget Ken,

He's a deperate sole, trying to get something for his progress payment that's been spent on lights, euro vacations, inventory of non-conf parts, and of course Dayjet's planes.

He is a typical buyer - he doesn't have a clue.

When someone mentions Bob Crandall for credibiltiy, well, I'll deal with that in due course.

In any case, you time is better served here providing insight, not dealing with Ken Leyer.

mouse said...


The engine works just fine..., and it is not robust, never will be. Size matters, and the internal parts are at the edge of the envelope for durability. Now with a defined life span of say 1000 Hours, it could be a great engine. If you limit its life, and make enough of them, the cost point will work, since the cost to make a new engine is less than a typical overhaul price on most smaller engines (1000 - 1200 Lbs/Thrust engines).

The barrel on the A-10 only has a service life measured in minutes, and depending on the burst duration, seconds...

Even the older Caterpiller diesel engines were designed as throw-aways... Its an economic price point and nothing more...

Ken Meyer said...

mouse wrote,

"Ken...You are WRONG on nearly every single issue or point you have ever brought to this site"

But I sure as heck pegged you right. You're a disgruntled former employee who keeps writing things that are just plain wrong.

Take your latest misrepresentation--

I asked you what made you think Vern promised a "stupidly high" number of test hours that the company then failed to achieve. And you said, "Because he did! Read the Press Releases from Eclipse."

OK, I read them. And guess what, you're wrong again!

This Press Release was issued by the company the very day they started the flight test program on the Pratt-powered EA500, 12/31/04:

"The maiden flight of N503EA occurred on schedule, initiating a 15-month testing program that involves seven test airframes, more than 3,000 flight hours and several hundred hours of ground testing. Eclipse estimates that the Eclipse 500 flight test program will accumulate two to three times more total hours than traditional general aviation aircraft programs, allowing the aircraft to achieve a higher level of reliability prior to first customer deliveries."

The company promised 3000 hours of flight tests. AND THEY DELIVERED MORE THAN THAT.

It wasn't a "stupidly high" number of hours that they could never achieve. They exceeded the number of hours they promised.

You were wrong. Again.

You write a lot of things that are wrong. I'm guessing you write things you know are incorrect because it is the only way you can attack the plane and the company. I do feel for you; you're obviously in pain.


gadfly said...

"Quest" considers the PT6A-34 engine a "one time use" (for the "Kodiak") . . . to be replaced with a new engine at 3,500 hours. 'Nothing wrong with the engine, but in extreme conditions in constant severe use, a "re-built" is not worth the risk, flying in and out of short strips in remote areas of the world on the mission field, when every take-off and landing is "STOL", and almost every load is at maximum takeoff weight. Even giant GE engines have certain components that are much thinner than a "finger-nail" (stator ring seals that must not fail, in the range of .010 inches thick) . . . so do not be too quick to criticize the size of the blades on the William's engines.

It is easy to criticize when you do not know what you are talking about.


bill e. goat said...

I was puzzeled by the EJ22 history too- I think it was a couple of months ago there was a series of posts regarding it- this is what I recall:

The NASA funded flight test did not happen because, like our dear boy president, they declared VICTORY too early. (NASA's ultimate goal was introduce to GA a light weight, low cost turbine. Eclipse's adoption of the Williams engine for production constituted success in their minds- after all, Eclipse wouldn't adopt it if it didn't work, right?...or at least not if it wasn't going to work, right?

NASA screwed the pooch by not following the development technical details through to completion. Vern screwed the pooch by getting greedy and jumping on the design to keep it from competitors (but didn't realize what it would take to get it to work). Williams screwed the pooch by agreeing to let Eclipse have exclusive rights to the engine for the first x number of years, and was left hanging when Eclipse walked and stopped funding it (except for what Mouse says about the military using it, I suppose that's the return to the tax payers for it being initially funded with tax payer dollars).

I think Williams had reasonable expectation of getting it debugged eventually- I don't think they were trying to commit fraud. I think it was somewhat nobel of Williams to consent to exclusive rights for Eclipse, just to get the VLJ market going. I think he was playing cards with a shark though.

Regarding delicacy of design, perhaps the early engines were “technology demonstrators” with limited life expectancy, and later versions of the EJ22 had modestly more robust components? (It would be necessary to shield it from birds, and other fod, probably even dust as much as possible, maybe some fancy duct work if it gets buried in a fuselage- or missile body...)

bill e. goat said...

Regarding the Eclipse exceeding their "promised" flight test hours, (but not meeting schedule...)

I think the Titanic promised their customers a swimming pool, which turned out to exceed expectations, but they didn't quite meet schedule either...

I agree, that while a lot of avionics development is being flown, inadvertently other things are getting tested as well, and this will help minimize entry into service problems on sundry other components.

cherokee driver said...


The following was taken from a September 2001 Professional Pilot article on the Eclipse website:

"The “revolutionary aircraft” will arrive on the market a little slower that originally anticipated due to slight revisions in the aircraft's development program. The company first announced it would achieve first flight in July 2002 and this, coupled with a decision to log the 5,000 flight test hours on five aircraft rather than six, will push delivery of the first Eclipse 500 back five months from Eclipse's original estimates released last July. The test fleet will now consist of three certification and two beta aircraft, along with two additional airframes for static and fatigue testing. Plans originally called for development of three beta aircraft, but Eclipse Vice President of Engineering Oliver Masefield says these plans were changed both for financial reasons and because he wants the beta test aircraft “to have experienced all the teething problems rather than pushing off the first real testing on our customers.” The beta test aircraft will both log 1,500 hours rather than three aircraft each flying 1,000 hours. The three certification aircraft will log an additional 2,000 hours, for a total of 5,000 hours."

Looks like they promised at least 5000 hours which they didn't achieve. Maybe you should do a little more homework. You are quoting from the change to the change to the change.

airtaximan said...


you are 100% correct, sir.

Amazing how with similar facts (I did not remember one you just borught up) one could come to slightly diffrent conclusions/opinions. Like I said, you were there - thanks for the clarification.

- I forgot the initial strategy was to throw the engine out after a limited useflu life. I think your 1,000 hours is high, but that would have made a terrific engine at 1,000 hrs for the price.

That's why the accessories, etc were on board.

Looks like I was correct to say, rely on Mouse - you have more details. I think so research would bring up the "throw away" nature of the engine...

And yes, overhauls are more than $85k... makes perfect sense. I imagine once ytou get above a certain thrust requirement, the throw away machinery was too small to make sense.


PS. I'm not sure I like the idea of a throw away engine supoorting my life and my family, either.

airtaximan said...

"You are quoting from the change to the change to the change."

need anyone say more?

airtaximan said...

(It would be necessary to shield it from birds, and other fod, probably even dust as much as possible

the intial idea was that the position of the enges low and fat would shield it from fod/birds, and birdstrike tests could be foregone.

Never happend.. pipe dream... Williams has a patent on this design "feature"...Vern stated it in a Press Conference at NBAA one year.

It was a joke, but he still doesn't get it...

airtaximan said...

Ken, you obviously have no shame...

redtail said...

Mouse said... The engine has been running just fine in a high security test cell for some time now, so perhaps it is in use as we speak.

Airtaximan said... But it does not seem like even its Father, Sam Williams believes it could work. ..unless, as I suspect, Mouse knows something "black", that we do not know...

Mouse, the last two times I caught you in a lie, you countered with something like "I was present at the super-duper top secret board meeting, and here's how it was..." Now here you go again.

The only reason that the engine would be in a high security test cell would be beacuase 1) Williams is too embarrassed about the whole program that they don't want anyone to see it, or 2) the engine is being developed for another cruise missile, in which case the FBI should be showing up on your doorstep momentarily for revealing that fact here. The engine did not work. Even Airtaximan would admit that. Williams has no mention of it's availability anywhere. Williams has no mention ofit's further development anywhere. The only purpose it could have is in a future cruise missile where it expected life is one flight.

Everyone here knows that if Williams had the engine ready for GA use, they would say so, so that a potential buyer would step up. They don't. You know why? Because the engine is junk, it didn't work for Eclipse, regardless of who designed the FADEC, and you're full of shit and a liar. Now, tell us again, why were you fired? Was it theft, or lying?

Koolaid-drinker1 said...

I'll throw you blogers a little tidbit and mouse a little cheese, you'll soon see JT flying, his new Eclipse in the breeze. A lesson learned from cyberspace, don't believe all that you read, only believe what you think you believe! Now on to Reno......

Koolaid-drinker1 aka(CAD1)

Gunner said...

The accusation, "lie", spills off your tongues as easily as "hate". You use it whenever you see information that you can't defend again or spin. It's old, ugly and boring the living hell out of us.

Meantime, CherokeeDriver provided EXACT documentation of Mouse's claims regarding the failure to attain promised flight test hours:

"The company first announced it would achieve first flight in July 2002 and this, coupled with a decision to log the 5,000 flight test hours on five aircraft rather than six, will push delivery of the first Eclipse 500 back five months from Eclipse's original estimates released last July.

Plans originally called for development of three beta aircraft, but Eclipse Vice President of Engineering Oliver Masefield says these plans were changed"

Your memory was right on the money, Mouse.

I'm sorry, the official EA-50X Librarian, I have to tell you. Once again, you've been B-U-S-T-E-D!

Time to move from mislead to misdirect. Time to parse. It's like a bad AM song that plays over and over and over and over.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Well, well, well.

Thanks for the article and quote Cherokee Driver.

Ken, I was apparently mistaken when I thought I recalled Dr. Masefield saying 3 'Beta' planes at 1000 hours PLUS 3000 for cert, they only planned 2000 hours for cert, but most certainly planned for 3 beta aircraft and 3000 hours of testing - as I said.

They expected about 5000 hours for cert and Beta, they did a little over 3000 - how is that meeting let alone exceeding their commitment? I know, it's the new math.

They then no-showed at AOPA last year and LIED about it for 3 weeks, a lie you took part in - all the while shouting from the rooftops it wasn't so and casting aspursions on all the critics.

Who first picked up that Eclipse was not at AOPA last year, that they were grounded, and dug out the actual issue (wing bushings) - that's right Cardinal Ken, it was ME!

Same for the cracking transparencies - it was me - a critic.

I am still waiting for Fuji, Hampson and another structural supplier to get tossed under the bus - it is only a matter of time.

Who nailed the Avidyne divorce weeks ahead and predicted, accurately, the e-CON Jet - it was ATM - a critic.

Who has hit the nail on the head for some of the capital market machinations and contract issues Ken - it was Gunner - a critic.

Who gets the e-mails and inside info from current and former vendors, customers and employees Ken - it is Stan - a critic.

This discussion has been so lopsided, if it were a baseball game we critics would be enjoying a cold brew and cheerleaders at the clubhouse having enjoyed the merciful benefit of the run-rule while the faithful were on the long tear-filled bus ride home, providing each other solace, in the company of losers.

Now don't go off and try to bore us with the 'but you guys said they would NEVER get a TC or a PC' - first off, it ain't true (we didn't say it) and the validity of those certificates must be taken in context of the forced reassignment of MIDO staff working on the EAC project and the complaint from FAA Technical staff about the eleventh hour deal signed off on by ACO management - not Technical.

Now you try - I'll start it for you even - Sorry Fish, I was mistaken when I said ...

Gunner said...

Take it up with 421Jockey. He provided the information that Travolta would not be taking delivery of Le Petit. Hardly a rumor started by Critics; in fact, my own commentary was qualified with, "If this is true".

Looks like you guys need to get ABQ to sync up the stories you're fed.

Gunner said...

Apologies if the Beta Aircraft lies were attributed to you and not Mouse. Whoever made the statement was obviously correct. Ken obviously was erroneous when he cried "LIE!"....again.

This is like a dinner party in a house full of angry Chihuahuas. Difficult to keep score of which one bit which guest. ;-)

bill e. goat said...

"Coupled with a decision to log the 5,000 flight test hours on five aircraft rather than six, will push delivery of the first Eclipse 500 back five months...The beta test aircraft will both log 1,500 hours rather than three aircraft each flying 1,000 hours".

I'm not sure I'm reading this right:

"...these plans were changed both for financial reasons and because he wants the beta test aircraft "to have experienced all the teething problems rather than pushing off the first real testing on our customers.""

Does this mean to save money by not building one extra beta airplane, the program is sliding five months? No, then what is being said- pretty convoluted.

I can appreciate the approach to "wringing out" two airplanes with 1500 hours each more thoroughly than three airplanes with 1000 hours each, but consider:

With 1400+ people on the payroll, years of delays, and $15-45M/mo "burn rate", think how cheap it would have been to build one extra beta plane to save X months (even just 1 or 2) of schedule, that could well have been used by marketing for exposure, and sales for promotion, in addition to it's beta-test functions.

This was an extraordinarily weird move, even from an extraordinarily weird company like Eclipse...

Koolaid-drinker1 said...

And the mouse said " I am great, I am large, I am not as small as a mouse would appear", then mouse climbed on his Pegasus while gadfly kicked it (you know where) all the while mouse squeaking, Ken, you dork, Ken you dork, I am the mighty mouse! squeak, squeak, squeak.

Koolaid-drinker1 aka(CAD1)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

The EJ-22 was 'owned' by Eclipse.

At one point BEFORE the split, I believe Williams actually did show an FJ-22 at either AOPA or NBAA or maybe OSH - and I recall some major fireworks being rumored between Williams and Eclipse about it.

The EJ-22 was a very impressive and imaginative powerplant - but it was NOT a high-utilization engine - it would have been a limited life engine with no possibility of overhaul (as well as no economic reason to try, the whole thing was essentially disposable due to the price point).

FWIW, the 3-spool RB-211 nearly destroyed Rolls-Royce who was a deep-pocketed and very experienced engine manufacturer.

Williams has some great metalurgical concepts and some very clever fuel delivery and combustor designs but even now I would think it a stretch to compare them to R-R at the height of their game.

Aerodynamics do not scale well, and ATM and others have very clearly and accurately identified the issues with tight clearance parts, etc.

I believe that the EJ-22 did not come to fruition due to schedule issues between Eclipse and Williams, coupled with the out-of-control weight growth for the plane that has resulted in a BEW that is about the same as the projected MTOW of the original design (with the same basic wing).

Given more time and money (like say that which Eclipse itself has required), the EJ-22 could probably have matured into a neat, little, disposable engine for light aircraft.

But, given the public tantrums that Vern threw I don't know how Williams could have attracted another customer for the engine.

My personal belief is that Eclipse NEEDED a scapegoat to create a believable explanation as to why the plane wasn't ready and Williams was the best target at the time, followed I believe by BAe Systems, then DeVore, then others.

I have fired guys who are unable to accept any responsibility for their mistakes and would love to pull a Trump boardroom with everyone's favorite bombastic CEO from Albuquerque.


Ken Meyer said...

My apologies, folks. I missed the 5000 hour projection from 2000. So, shoot me :)

I still wouldn't call that projection "stupidly high." And the fact is that the company exceeded the number of flight hours they projected at the actual start of flight testing (as opposed to the number they hoped for some years earlier). Indeed, they came came pretty close to the number they projected in 2000--they flew about 72% of that early projection.

Either way, the Eclipse 500 has been subjected to a lot more flight testing prior to customer delivery than most other GA jets--about 3600 hours in total.


bill e. goat said...

KAD1 (a.k.a. CAD1),
Thanks for the scoop (or re-scoop, or un-scoop:) regarding JT.

(I suspect 20yrmech had reasons for thinking what he did, and I appreciate him sharing them. I'm sure there was something to what he said, but perhaps he didn't have the whole story. I believe K/Cad1- it seemed odd that Vern would alienate a long-term client (well, maybe not so odd:). But it will be interesting to see what emerges regarding what 20yrM noted.

As KAD1/CAD1 appropriately points out, it is good to read with some reservation.

We are indeed fortunate to have such a nice blog to read. I think there is negligible (well, maybe not quite 1e-9 :) intent to mislead here, on ANYONE's part (although the Pogo IPO was a bit suspicious...perhaps just gleeful rather than contrived).

There are many passionate, but sincere, contributors- and I think no one is deliberately trying to mislead the other, despite some accusations to such effect. Even those accusations are made in sincerity- and obvious, ah, "passion", I believe :).

Regarding Mouse's contributions, I must say, he has been very instrumental in helping me form a cohesive picture of what I believe was going on behind the scenes in the early years of Eclipse.

His representations seem to have no contradictions, so I'd have to say he's "bona fide" in my book! (See the George Clooney movie "Where Art Thou oh Brother":)

Ken is "bona fide" in my book too- I've never detected any intent to mislead with his statements either.

redtail said...


You can bitch and cry all you want. The fact is Mouse has, in your words, been B-U-S-T-E-D. He is what his is. I leave what term you want to use up to you when referring to Mouse as the purveyor of false information. In this case he's just flat out wrong, and too embarrassed that he got caught to admit it.

Gunner said...

Ken said:
"My apologies, folks. I missed the 5000 hour projection from 2000. So, shoot me :)"

You just went up a full notch in my book, Ken. It would have been 3, if you hadn't followed by spinning that Eclipse pretty much met their comments regardless. Still, you offer hope that reasonable exchange may yet be a possibility.

Kindly stop thieving oxygen. Sentient beings may someday require what you squander today. ;-)


mouse said...

Sorry RedButt,

I have never lied, and you could not catch a cold...

But see if you can catch a ride in Kens Eclipse... That would be a great trick, and a big lie..

mouse said...


The reason for not building another beta was due to no parts avaiability, and at the rate of design changes (hourly still)it's amazing anything is getting built to this day...

They have all the parts they need for Kens plane though.... Zero, Zip, Nada, Zilch, 0, Goose Egg... Right Ken? I uderstand Vern'll make you a deal on the one that bellied in... Make you a nice set of bookends for you hangar...

mouse said...


I never claimed to be great, but you bestowed that honor on me... Thank you.

And It's nice to know you are so concerned about it.. I'm not.

mouse said...


You are right on the nose with your statements on the EJ22. Eclipse was paying $2.5M per month for its development, and it was just for them (the EJ version) Williams displayed the FJ22 at NBAA.. Vern went nuts because he thought he owned the exclusive use forever... only the first 2 years, and that was on the EJ version. Williams was going to develop the FJ22 if they were approached by a customer, and they were honoring the 2 year window if Eclipse made their timeline and quantity purchases, which of course they did neither.

And the idea that others have about if being a cruise missle engine are just plane stupid. Williams already has a number of military rocket/missle engines... I would imagine a Unmanned spy plane might be a better guess...

mouse said...

So now we know how Ken calculates his reserve fuel... He thinks 72% is pretty close...

Lets see, Ken says range is 1100nm, so 750 nm is close enough to 1100 I guess...

I guess Ken would be pleased with everything from Eclipse that was within 72%... No wonder he brags so freely on the EA-500... It's pretty close to a 72%er today...

Mission Accomplished!

Gunner said...

Question for the engineer types. If the EA-50X experiences an AD which grounds the fleet, how will they handle repair/retrofit? Can a ferry permit be granted to get the birds back to ABQ or other service centers? Will they have to put mechanics on the road to make the repairs? What if it's a major modification, like the wing bushings?

Have other GA manufacturers faced this issue, without a network of authorized service FBO's?

Black Tulip said...

On picking up the thread, this bright blue Sunday morning, it’s nice to read that peace has broken out on the blog. It is heartwarming to see such conciliatory comments exchanged.

Having the Faithful on one side and the Naysayers on the other is polarizing and promotes dissent. We need a new category and I suggest these even tempered folks be labeled Friends Of Eclipse.

Black Tulip

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...


When a Service Bulletin or AD are issued those kinds of concerns are usually addressed when it is developed and a window of some kind to get to a suitable location\etc. is typically included.

Only time you would not see that is if the issue is so important in the FAA's eyes that they do not want a single flight to occur, anywhere - a true grounding.

In that case, I would suspect Eclipse would dispatch trained mechanics or have to issue enough information for non-Eclipse 'authorized' mechanics to do whatever was required to regain airworthiness.

And Eclipse's travelling mechanics would need to fix the travelling mechanic EA-500 before they could use it to fly out and help any customers.

Gunner said...

Makes sense. Thanks much.

a37pilot said...

These days, unless the AD specifically prohibits further flights, you can get a special flight permit to move the aircraft to a place where you can have the AD complied with. This changed a couple of years ago. Before that the AD had to have a statement allowing flight under 21.197 in order for you to use a special flight permit

interested eclipse follower said...


Stan, Gunner, makarel, billegoat, ken, airtaximan, blacktulip, mouse, redtail, et al:

You each bring up accurate examples of commitments Eclipse has badly missed (price, schedule, production, range, payload), challenges in their business model (burn rate, capital required, reliance on unproven airtaxi market), occassional successes, etc. Several times you have broken big news (wing bushings, windshields, AOPA missing in action, etc.) But many posts mainly look to the past.

I think it might be educational, helpful, and fun for avid readers to see what people are willing to predict for the future and then look back 1 or two years hence. I know that is being done on the 2007-2008 delivery forecast Stan has put up, which is a great start, but how about a broader view?

Who is willing to put down in writing, on the blog, the manner and timing of Eclipse' eventual failure, downfall, success or muted success? as a prediction?

This would ideally include predictions from each frequent critic and supporter poster in each of the following categories (and any others you choose):


-if/when does Vern step down or get fired as CEO (even I am sure he will spin it as "it's always been my plan to step aside when we transitioned from a development and early delivery company to a high volume....")


-when, if ever, the the capital markets punish Eclipse for the massive cash they have raised, with a recapitalization, cram-down round of financing, bankrupcy reorganization, etc. This could range from "continue to raise cash sucessfully through 2008, complete a successful IPO in early 2009, and become a reasonable (no not google) stock) to "fail to raise cash in Q1 2008, existing backers decide to no longer put good money after bad, priority creditors force company into chapter xx reorganization, xxx largecorp or xxx capitalsource infuses capital and takes over ownership in Qx 20xx"


-Do internal complaints on pressure, harassment, etc ever bubble up to cause Eclipse trouble?
-Does FAA ground fleet due to...
-Does new FAA director throw cold water on VLJ's?


-After Dayjet launches in September, do they falter and fail within six months, stay small and never reach growth and aircraft projections, turn into an on demand charter carrier, or does DayJet prosper, Pogo go IPO and launch, and a new category of transportation successfully is launched?


-Does conceptjet get to market?
-Is the 500 abandoned after 500 shipments and replaced with a model addressing shortcomings?


-When/if is safety of E500 called into question due to xxx incident(s)?
-training readiness shortfalls?


-Does Cessna Mustang, etc etc etc take the wind out of Eclipse' sails, does Eclipse triumph in defining the category, or does the sub 2.5 million VLJ category never emerge?


Gunner said...

I'll start:
I don't believe the company is viable 24 months out unless it finds a viable new market to buy up 400+ aircraft per year. Owner flown demand is simply not there and, once the real costs of maintaining this rather sub-standard aircraft are known, along with the practical range limitations, I believe that demand will only shrink. So it's up to DayJet and others like DayJet.

I don't believe there is a market for this jet at all, if they have to push the pricing to profitable levels, which today would probably be north of the Mustang price.

I don't believe there are enough intellectual, design, certification or hard assets in the company to make it an attractive buy-out candidate. The certified design? Worth a couple hundred million to a manufacturer wanting to bet on sales of a $2.5mm+ aircraft that happens uses a bit less fuel at the expense of less room, less range and less useful load than the competition.

Its customer list? Individuals and entities wanting $3mm worth of aircraft but willing to pay no more than $2mm. Which brings us to the safety issues....if this aircraft is being put together as has been claimed, just to get production out the door, it truly MAY become the Yugo of the air in short order.

The "everyman twin jet" is still a worthwhile dream; but it's a dream none-the-less. Eclipse hasn't fulfilled that dream. I predict Chapter 11 or 7 within the next 18 months.

gadfly said...

This morning, I met an “ATC” with the FAA, and in the course of conversation asked him his take on the Eclipse:

His comments indicated that the Eclipse is somewhat of a nuisance, slow and underpowered, causing problems in traffic around ABQ and Santa Fe, ‘. . . a 40mph car in traffic on the freeway’ (his description). And pilots more interested/distracted with their instrument panels than calling in to ATC. He said they will be limited to 26,000 to 27,000 feet, because of their inability to get out of the way of normal traffic. He made no positive comments about the plane . . . and we turned to other conversation unrelated to aviation.


airtaximan said...

Long term, I think the whole ball of wax depends on Dayjet.

I think Dayjet is a "sister company" to e-clips, in ways we do not already know. I think they probably have common shareholders, and I think this insulates e-clips from some risk... the risk Dayjet will dump e-clips.

I think there's a 50%-50% chance Dayjet works. Ed's smart, and has solid experience paving new ground and opening up new markets. We should not count him out.

I think he would have an easier time, with another plane built by another company.

If he somehow can refine his offering (and he will have to do this) perhaps he can create demand for the plane.

Otherwise... curtains.

PS. I think the plane is in the sour spot of the market. There is nothing about the price that is extraordinary - the singles will beat it handsomely...others will compete. even if Dayjet is successful, there will be others, using different equipment and they can be competitive. A larger plane is needed IF the per seat thing works... a smaller plane is needed if it does not.
- dayjet is married to e-clips though... it does not matter except for the competition...

Short term, (the next year)... I think Dayjet will have to begin taking on more planes sooner...and take on at least 100 planes in the next year to make a statement that they "e-clips air taxi is for real". Somehow, they (Eclipse and or Dayjet) will need to obtain fresh financing in the next 10-20 weeks...just to keep e-clips going. I know what I'm implying here. Headlines read; "Dayjet places $100 million firm deposit..." or "Dayjet invests in e-clips" ...

I think right after NBAA there's going to be major news - either a slowdown and restructuring, or a miracle financing. I'd say before December 15th for sure.

...otherwise... Ken can forget ever flying his e-500.

PS. Ed's already hedging on how many planes he could take this year... it used to be 100 or so... then 35 before YE, now its couched as 20-30. Indications are my prediction can only have one result... unless something magical happends at Dayjet - it might!

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

I think the only difference between us is that I give the Investment Markets more credit for smarts than you (and I may well be wrong).

No question that "sizzle" can be sold in the markets. Vern's done that better than most I've seen. But DayJet is a different story. It's not a long time certification runup; it's a cookie cutter operation. If it can't sell in Florida (or the PRK), it's a Hard Sell anywhere else.

By the time Ed goes back for another round, his numbers in Florida will be documented and available. Personally, I think this is part of the reason why they've held off launch. It's an investment alligator.....will eat you alive.

Again, not a scam. They really thought they could provide air taxi for $.50-$1/mile. But, then, Vern really thought he could provide a quality, personal twin-jet for $775K.

They sailed with that. Today, they bail just to stay above water. Ed seems like a decent guy and I hope he's successful; but, like you, I think he may have fallen in with the wrong crowd.

Koolaid-drinker1 said...

hmmmmmmmm.. a 707 leaves KRNO and lands in KABQ within the last 1/2 hour around 3pm MTN....

JT's right on Time

Must just be a fuel stop !

Koolaid-drinker1 aka(CAD1)

Gunner said...

If that's John Travolta (and you're so plugged in), give him this message: tell him I don't much care for his Christian Science Cult. I know, 'cuz I've publicly taken them on (no small feat for anyone who has done their homework). But that, too, is his choice and none of us can ever account for others Cult leanings.

Still, wish him my personal and honest best; he's a great aviator and a great actor. Let him know that a Blogger, who pretty much proved himself to be a senior craftsman out there, had this to say about JT's jet:

"About 35% of the drawings wont conform to the actual production that is being done. Everything is fudged and the Engineering is too lazy to correct the drawings that are being used for production. They wont learn to get there sh*t together until one of these planes gets put into the dirt. We have nick named this Aircraft YUGO JET, as it has the same quality as a YUGO. It all hit me when I saw John Travolta AC#47 come down the line. I would feel like crap if anything where to happen to him in this jet."

Fly safe, Mr. Travolta. I truly mean that.

gadfly said...


Mary Baker Glover Patterson Eddy would be “proud”. It’s just a matter of mind over matter, or mind over pain, or mind over plane, or whatever the matter might be (if you don’t mind).


airtaximan said...


"Again, not a scam. They really thought they could provide air taxi for $.50-$1/mile. But, then, Vern really thought he could provide a quality, personal twin-jet for $775K."

worth repeating and remembering...

This is soo true.

I'd add:
- they thought they would have a monopoly
- their relationship is alot like microsoft and IBM at the beginning of Microsoft
- their product is a lot like Microsoft

I agree with your comments on this, and I'd love to hear from a die-hard, how they think this could play out.

The following is certainy out of the question... but you'll kow why I'm offering it:
1- they ramp to 1 plane a day in Sept
2- Dayjet is flooded with customers and id cash positive in November
3- they ramp to two planes a day in April
4- no further financing was required all along

PS. if they do announce anyting about the con-jet at NBAA, the situation is WORSE than I thought, and the only saving grace is the new COn-jet... which is well a c....


airtaximan said...

a while back, there was a story and an imagie of the e-500 with Virgin colors in the aviation news...AIN or FI... nice n' reputable...

Guess what became of this?


Did Travolta sleep at the hotel on night back in was it 2001 with Ken? How did he get number 5X? Same way Mouse suggests Ken should be owning an e-500 now? Or was it provided...for hype?

Any takers?

Gunner said...

I am SO sorry for my slip and to all Christian Scientologists, whether they read this Blog or not. I was referring to L. Ron Hubbard's infamous "Church" of Scientology.

For anyone wishing to do a Ph.D. thesis in Cult Mentality, this one has it ALL....

Still, best wishes to JT. I know him better as Actor and Pilot.

gadfly said...


Part of the beauty of this blogsite (in spite of some of the “not-so-beautiful-moments”) is that there is much to be learned. And in reading the “Scientology” website, some of their comments seem to describe Vern, and the philosophy of Eclipse . . . paraphrased as a man being able to solve all his own problems . . . I can understand why JT might be drawn to this “aircraft”. So whether Christian Science or Scientology, there may be a similarity. Bottom line: It’s a “study” in why someone believes that they do not need the advice of others or a “higher authority” to build something new . . . in this case, the ignoring of a century of development of aircraft by the “dinosaurs”. Within that context, we await with ‘bated breath for the final outcome. (Actually, most of us know how it will end . . . it’s just a matter of time.)


(Hey! . . . it’s my take on the matter.)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

I can imagine the call now:

"John, this is Vern...."


"Vern, Vern Raburn"

"Vern who?"

"Vern Raburn, Eclipse Aviation"

"Oh, the toy jet, yeah, what is up Sport?"

"John, you know Tom Cruise ordered a couple of our jets right?"


"Well Tom ordered a couple jets"

"I see"

"John, the great galactic god Xenu called me the other day during my anti-Thetan treatment."


"Yes John, he told me you need to come pick up a jet before Tom does."


"Yes John, and he told me to make you a great deal on a very early delivery position."

"Really, you know NBAA is coming up soon, maybe I can look at one then."

"No John, I need, err, I mean Xenu told me that you need to have one before NBAA so that we can have some good news before all the bad news, err, I mean did I ever tell you how much I enjoyed Battle Field Earth?"


"Yeah, it was great."

"Thanks, uhhhh, Sport."

"So John, can I, err I mean can Xenu depend on you to come pick upone of our early jets?"

"Does it have GPS?"

"No, not really."

"Does it have known-icing?"

"Ummm, no."

"Does it have FMS?"

"No, not yet."

"Does it have autopilot?"

"Umm, did I tell you how much I like Battlefield Earth, great movie - you and Forrest Whittaker, shoulda won an Emmy."

"It would have been an Academy Award."

"Yeah, whatever, so can you come here and pick one up? I'll make Scientology the official state religion of the Eclipse Nation, I know just the guys to handle our online presence."

"I don't know, I usually like to buy functional planes that I can actually use."

"We'll name it the Spirit of L. Ron Hubbard."

"Well, OK then."

I do actually respect Travolta as an accomplished actor and an aviator, but I think perhaps he may have a cult problem.

Regardless, Blue Skies Vinnie! Here's hopin he's Stayin Alive.

gadfly said...

Frigid Pisces

You is one funny fish!


sparky said...


this is an opinion, only an opinion. It comes from what I've seen so far, and gut feeling.

The chances of any other company picking up where eclips leaves off is slim to none.

Why would any other company even consider buying the design, the plus's are overwelmingly outweighed by the minuses.

avio ng. behind schedule and slipping fast. nobody wants to be saddled with an incomplete avionics system that runs every single system on the aircraft, Way too much liablilty in this. If anything fails and causes an accident, avio can and will be blamed.

FSW. the licensing for this process is such that the only reason for using it would be high-rate production. They've hired the industries best(automotive industry) and hired outside consultents and even split the line, still no high rate. anybody know what the licensing costs for this labor saving invention are?

price point. In order to turn a profit, the price will have to be raised to a point that way too close to that of the mustang. once that happens, it's a no brainer.

Service centers. whoever takes over will have to build ALOT more service centers, the two they have now will not support any type of fleet.

loss of support, How many original position holders will stick around for the new pricing? even their most vocal supporter won't buy one. Ken's hoping against all odds that he'll get something for his deposit and original price. He's not willing to move up to the 1.6M price range and he loves the bird.

i give it 9 months at best, and that's being extremely optomistic.

mouse said...


regarding a Special FLight Permit (ferry flight) typically they can be issued unless the AD stipulates otherwise. It depends on the nature and the cricality of the AD, the FSDO granting the authority, and the mechanic requesting and signing off on the permit.

A big issue that Eclipse has missed the boat on, amung other things is that anyone should be able to work on their aircraft without special training and tools or how dispatchable and maintainable can it really be? Didn't address that in the white toilet paper, did they???

a37pilot said...

Eclispe Predicitions

This is my guess as to how things are going to play out. It is only an opinion and nothing more.


VR stays on until almost the very end primarily driven by ego and the fact that there is no exit strategy


I think they can/will go back to the well one more time. This is after all the only thing they seem to be really good at. After that even there well healed friends will have had enough.
When the order book becomes visible we all find out that there were never more than 300-400 individual orders that where actually secured by real deposits and no more than 100 individuals ever paid the 60% progress payment.

The company is sold and a group of investors pick up whats left at bargain basement prices. Depositors get little if nothing. About 200 aircraft are built over the next 10-12 years by a succession of company owners as the operators try desperately to maintain a marginally supported one of a kind aircraft.


The FAA does nothing until they are forced to act if the aircraft accident rate gets out of hand. Let's all hope this does not become necessary.

Air Taxi

Not going to happen like DJ first envisioned. They give up the per seat plan and find a small market for traditional charter with a small fleet then give up when the operating cost gets out of hand as the aircraft ages.

Eclipse Models

The only one to ever hit the market is already flying (after a fashion)


Let's hope for the best.


Three or four years ago at $875K this was the greatest idea since sliced bread. Now in order to sell this at a profit you're looking at Mustang prices so you might as well go to Cessna and get one.

I give the whole thing 18-24 months

mouse said...

Wet fish,

Tom Cruise (and Penelope Cruz) came by back in 2002 (in the evening) for a private tour. He was filming The Last Samuri at the time. He passed on the plane, at least back then. Not sure if he changed his mind since then.

They were gracious, and thanked me for my part of the tour, but they he was not looking that impressed, and she said out loud the plane sure was tiny... And both of them a relatively small people in size.

We were entertaining them as investors, not just customers.

Harrison Ford also sniffed around, and left hastily (not the same timeframe)

airtaximan said...


this is so smart, and so simple... and EVERYONE misses this point.

"A big issue that Eclipse has missed the boat on, amung other things is that anyone should be able to work on their aircraft without special training and tools or how dispatchable and maintainable can it really be?"

I chalk it up to greed, and ignorance.
- Greed, synonymous with the "engine" makers who make more on maintenance than engines.. perhaps the same with maintenance planes and upgrades in the e-world
-ignorance - I truely believe the dream was flawed, in that the plane was not designed for air taxi - no AT company participated, no customer focus groups were doen, except Dayjet's years after the fact - and they did not understand that maintenance, for revenue huigh cycle operations and dispatch reliability are everything -the key driver of cost and metric for profitability. IGNORANT.

Its a nice plane for Ken.. that's it. I'd say there really are 300 or so Kens around... the rest are chasing a fallacy. At 300 Kens, you have a marginal pilot requiring a lot of training, an uninformed customer who is a believer, a guy who cannot really afford any other jet, so he cannot really afford THISone, at 300 units.


Except for the relationship between Dayjet and e-clips. Its all about Dayjet now.

airtaximan said...


the funniest post yet, by anyone, by FAR!

I'm still laughing. Thanks...thanks so much.

So GDam funny.

airtaximan said...

fish, come to think of it...

you coulda easily worked out a special recruitment offer, to have the die-hard faithfulls join the Scientology religion. Same thing, really.

Same thing.

airtaximan said...

Serious JT question:

the guy has a gulfstream and a Boeing...

does anyone know how much it will cost this actor superstar to get insurance in the e-500?

The insurance company has got to have a clue as to the payout amounts... and the plane is what it is.. missing a lot a year or so later... and a small unproven plane compared to the gs and b's of the worls. If I'm his insurer, I say its a bundle.

Not that he can't afford it, but heck, why bother?

Some things make no sense...

Black Tulip said...


Thank you, thank you. I didn't want to take the time to see Battlefield Earth, but was mildy curious. You have satisfied my curiousity.

Black Tulip

mouse said...


Vern will remain in place, and have all of his powers removed. He will be controlled by the simple pressure of money. If he walks, or does not listen, he loses the carrot and gets only the stick...

The fact that they got financing last time proves there is no way to predict this... I do predict if an IPO is sought it will be shot down, and people will be going to jail... (See FAA below)

The plane will be found to have falsefied documents to gain conformity and there will be heavy reprocussions... Congrssional investigation will reveal thAT Blakely was in collusion.... As will a few other government officials in the congress and senate... look for resignations...

If DayJet is willing to listen to what customers want/need, they might survive. If they lease/operate the EA-500 to individulas and companies, the Eclipse will remain a viable aircraft for them. If they remain in a charter/air taxi mode it will be with other aircraft and the Eclipses will be sold off and orders cancelled. This will give Ken hundreds of planes not to buy!

They will procede with the ConJet until the money shuts them down. Funny, the ConJet is supposed to do the exact same thing the EA-500 was supposed to do...

After the planes go through an inspection cycle (1 year) gross unairworthy findings/issues will bring a multitude of AD's. The service centers will be staffed by the same inexperienced types as the barely-production floor and the FAA will be all over them like Ignorance on Ken/RedTail...

There is nobody who cares to compete with Eclipse, except perhaps Tonka or Fisher-Price. There are cheap customers (like Ken, but he's not a buyer) who will look to the jet to give them the Viagra effect, but the insurance market will swat most of these candidates away if the have any grand crashes. Any high-performance or new airplane has accidents, so I am talking about accidents due to design and construction and not operation, except the AVIO issue. If AVIO is at fault (not just blamed by some lawyer) then the plane will join the Starship in a museum or playgound/park...

Stan will recieve public recognition for helping to educate, protect, and change the way customers learn/study new technology via a blog, thanks in part to his openness (his own reputation/knowledge) and how he brought talented/experienced industry individuals to the group. (I'm serious)

I would not be surprised to see a suicide or "Went Postal" event from occuring at an Eclipse facility (Not wishing, but expecting)

A book on how business failed the people will be written and used in MBA schools as a case study...

Certification of the Level D simulators will be an issue will into 2008. (Partially due to inop systems on the real plane vs. sim training/syllabus)

Several EA-500's will be stripped of their C of A's for non-conformity, and the fleet will be forced to undergo a reconformity inspection by FAA designated IA's, Etc. under an emergency AD or a newly developed procedure.

The Eclipse will change the history of aviation (and the FAA) forever, but not the way Vern and his Diehards envisioned....

Black Tulip said...

ColdWetMack quoted Vern,

"I'll make Scientology the official state religion of the Eclipse Nation."

This is breaking news about the Eclipse Nation. Weren't they just granted tribal status by the Federal government? Isn't the Nation building a new casino in Abiquiu?

Black Tulip

mouse said...


the other point Vern and his "team" failed/fails to understand is that at the price point of the plane, it will take at least 125 airplanes per service center to break even for the operations and staffing. If the scam (Ooops, I mean dream) of high rate does not happen, the loses only continue. In fact, besides the rework issues, the service centers are a complete waste or time and money, except that Eclipse has gotten the politicians to put up the land and the buildings, so the cost to Eclipse is/was minimal. You will also see that the service centers are all located closest to the airtaxi guys and furthest from the individual owner types... The owner group is the largest potential user, not the airtaxis who will do their own maintenance work to control time/cost and quality to thier APrt 135 requirements. Again, the only saving grace for the moment will be during the warranty period for keeping the centers active.

It would have been smarter for Eclipse to place their technicians in to the fleet operators facilities with a supply of consignement parts. (again, free land and buildings is the save here for now).

It would have been far smarter to place Eclipse technicians into exisiting facilities as a "Satelite" operation like DUncan Avionics did, and then oversee/manage the facilites mechanics until enough aircraft are in the field....

Anonymous said...

airtaximan said,

"The insurance company has got to have a clue as to the payout amounts..."

Yes, the insurance underwriter has an excellent idea of the payout amount: the insured hull value, plus the liability limit of the policy.


ExEclipser said...

Here are a few talking points that I'd like to bring up with regards to the Eclipse finances.

DayJet recently secured $130 Mil in financing. I'm suspecting that most of this is going straight to Eclipse for payment of the 12 aircraft progress payments for the next 100 or so, and perhaps even deposits that may have not yet been secured.

POGO is working on their IPO. They're looking to raise about $100 Mil. I'm sure a good chunk of that is going to go to paying down deposits on 100 EA500s.

This is a LOT of money that is going to Eclipse that is in the form of revenue - not investment capital, but rather cash that they can use for payroll, procurment, debt payoff, etc.

And I haven't even brought up the $50 mil or so collected to pay for deliveries to date.

Maybe an early depositor can confirm this, but I don't think ANYONE including DayJet is actually paying $875K for their airplane. When the Pratt was introduced, and when the cost of aluminum and oil skyrocketed in 2004/2005, most early depositors had a choice - accept the higher price (or at least a certain percent increase if more deposit was paid) or go ahead and cancel.

If DayJet is only buying their fleet for $875K ea., then I suspect that the cost to cover their build is being amortorized throughout the rest of the fleet.

I'm not saying that the bleeding has stopped, but I don't think Eclipse is hemmoraging anymore.

redtail said...

Mouse said... Congrssional investigation will reveal thAT Blakely was in collusion.... As will a few other government officials in the congress and senate... look for resignations...

Mouse, Here we go again. You're even funnier that HolyMackeral. Now you're a fool, and a liar.

Bassmaster said...

I seemed to check in at the right I was looking for real info. It comes from 20yr mech. I don't see too many "critics" salivating over the info but as a neutral party I found 20yr's posts quite interesting. I initially found this blog while looking for E500 info...the blog is big time visible on goog! I've learned a bit about the airframe since my last visit. I've learned that it glides VERY well with NO power from some Williams test flights. This actually attracts me to this relatively small bit of kit. At 2300kg the planform seems OEI freindly with the PWC's and non critical aerofoil. I must say that 20yr is a bloke with some steel in his undercariage! No worries or offense to be intended...I'd like to hear more though! I was drawn into the forum in part by hearing of "cartwheeling Lears"...and you seem to be a tip tank specialist. Looks like a simple tank, more compund contours than the Lears though...but similar to Cessna piston twins...very similar. It's unfourtunate to hear of the problems assembling these kits. Please tell more before you leave the USA. Are you still with the company? You should like The Isle...I sure did back in 1970 when Mr Hendrix was there!

Anonymous said...

execlipser said,

"Maybe an early depositor can confirm this, but I don't think ANYONE including DayJet is actually paying $875K for their airplane."

I can't speak for Dayjet, but as far as I know, the Platinum position holders have the lowest individual purchase price -- $995k, with no CPI add-on (unless CPI exceeds a certain level, which it hasn't, yet).

I believe there were originally 180 Platinum positions.

This amount, plus options, is the amount the 60% deposit is based on. The $155k initial deposit that Platinum position holders made is counted towards the 60%, so they made up the difference -- a payment of about $442k for a no-option plane.


Bassmaster said...

Can anyone speak on behalf of 20yr 'till he comes back around? He may want to "come back around" in other ways before he mucks up his EADS relationship with FAA tentacles comming over the pond with him.

Shane Price said...


Don't even THINK about seeing Battlefield Earth, especially if it involves paying money.

One of the worst films I have ever seen. Badly directed, with 'special effects' straight from Japanese creature horrors of the '50s and 'acting' that is, frankly, beyond your worst nightmares.

The book, on the other hand, is not that bad. Provided you are aware of the subtext promoting the cult, it's one of my favourite sci fi novels.

Bit like the E499.5.

On paper, it's quite attractive...


ExEclipser said...

RCFlyer - well, then, from what I understand, there were no special discount prices offered to anyone - non-profit, large fleet buyers, anyone.

SO, that would mean that it's highly unlikely that DayJet has better than a $995 Mil per for at least 180 of their planes.

Of course, anything could be the case. Unless any of us were there at the contract signing, I guess we'll never know.

Gunner said...

No, we don't know (today). But consider this:
Ed was ready to launch DayJet a year ago; several launches were postponed, awaiting the jets.

Why delay when other aircraft were certainly available, even on lease, to get a jump on the competition and revenue coming in? In fact, why not INTENTIONALLY test the business plan viability with leased assets before committing your investors' money to a couple hundred million bucks in purchased assets?

The argument we hear is that only the EA-50X meets their needs, which begs the question, "Why?". At the altitudes they're flying, it's hardly the most fuel efficient. Given the missions their flying it's hardly the most passenger friendly or revenue productive.

The delays hardly make sense....unless you are so tied to Eclipse (one way or another) that you have no choice but to wait on the EA-50X.

ExEclipser said...


Respectfully, I ask what plane has better fuel economy for the speed at FL260-FL290?

If you have an answer for that, then can a single-model fleet be built around that airframe (ie: the 737 SWAirlines model)?

If you have an answer for both those questions, can that airframe be had for less than $2 Mil a pop?

ExEclipser said...

Doh - I can't forget to add - if you can answer all of the above, which are jets?

Shane Price said...


Sorry to butt in...

Everyone knows the answer to your question!

It's the ConJet of course.

Even The Great Raburn says its a better bet for airtaxi than anything else.

Can't argue with the master, can we?

And why bother with fast? Over the sort of legs they are talking about, 50kts (pick any number) delta in the speed will make no real difference in the overall transit time.

I agree with Gunner. Test the market with almost anything that can fly (within reason) while waiting for the E499.5.

There are several advantages in this, not least of which is the built in excuse for DayJet that 'everything will be better when we get our PaperJets (sorry, E500's)'

The more you look at DayJet, the more you have to suspect a stronger than normal (or healthy) link between supplier (Vern) and customer (Ed). That's a key element of what has been said here for more than a year now.

So, less of 'why the E499.5 is the perfect airtaxi' and more of 'why wait' if you please.

Remember, the Great Raburn has spoken. The ConJet, sorry ECJ, is the airtaxi of the future. Anyone who has a fleet of obselete E499.5' simply will not be competitive.


sparky said...


would you have us believe that the only way for ed to make a profit is to use the e500?

I know he wants to use the e-bird, but at the cost of Postponement after postponement doesn't make sense.

you asked what bird could do everything the e-bird could a $2M. It doesn't have to do everything, just fly 3 folks roughly 300-600 miles. Are you saying there is nothing flying today that can't do this?

Maybe ed's math and ant farming prove to him that eclipse is the best platform for this, but i find it hard to believe that there's nothing in the air that could do the job.

Black Tulip said...

Can anyone else envision O. J. Simpson fleeing in an all-white Eclipse 500 jet with the authorities and television crews in hot pursuit?

Black Tulip

airtaximan said...

There are 10,000 prop planes providing shot hop charter service in the US today.

Almost none have jets
Almost none have lavs
Almost all cost way less to operate than E-clips 500

I'm not saying this answers the question... I'm saying, perhaps its a loaded question.

Someone suggested there was no good reason for Dayjet to wait for e-clips, when they could have proven the viability of their model with other equipment.

Someone needs to provide the exact reason the e-500 will work better than 10,000 props in use already, today, for the same missions. least for a test.

The only thing I can think of is Dayjet wanted to be a homogenious fleet from the start and not confuse the public with "what plane might show up" - switching would be confufusing.

It has seemed to work OK for Linear, though.

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 291   Newer› Newest»