Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Post Mortem

It may be premature, but the critics have already started the draft:

Bonanza Pilot wrote - I really wish they would have done a more conventional plane and kept the cost closer to the original estimate. Even if the performance had sunk to say 300 knots or even 280 knots...there would be many of us interested in a sub 1 million dollar jet with excellent fuel burn. I wish they would have ditched Avio..gone with Garmin and certified and shipped completed products a long time ago.

I think the attraction of the "new" single is the price..the only thing that was really revolutionary about the Eclipse was the price...and the reason the order book is suspect is that price increase. I really do believe that if they could have delivered this thing below 1 million they would have been able to meet their sales numbers.

Gunner added, BP-The original dream was a good one. For the same reasons as Ken, I liked it enough to put down a $130K deposit. I've learned a LOT from this Blog in the past year. The most important thing I've learned is that there's a reason why none of the respected manufacturers are offering a twin-jet for under a million (or even under $2 million):

The technology revolution that's fueling the VLJ craze simply has not materialized. Sure, we've seen some evolutionary changes in materials, powerplant size and efficiency; but the Million Dollar twin jet still awaits the technology to make it happen (or a company willing to slap together a disposable).

sparky drew further conclusions - Gunner and BP,well said. I think the hype is starting to die down to a low rumble with the other manufacturers feeling the pressure of the original claims and pricepoints.

It's easy to make a really small jet, It's hard to make a really small jet compete on every level the way eclipse it trying; speed, weight, range, utilization...they're all tied together and their are trade-offs that must be made. I think this is the one thing that the e-boys missed and it's been an extrememly expesive lesson.

Look for the VLJ craze to start to cool off in the next 8-12 months as people and companies come to realize this. I think once everything gets sorted out they're going to be great little aircraft for the owner/operator, but not much more. That could be a healthy little market if not for the 6+ companies competing for it. The ones to survive are going to be the ones that planned for this type of production.

314 comments:

1 – 200 of 314   Newer›   Newest»
jetaburner said...

bonanza pilot-

You said:
"..the only thing that was really revolutionary about the Eclipse was the price...and the reason the order book is suspect is that price increase. I really do believe that if they could have delivered this thing below 1 million they would have been able to meet their sales numbers."

I agree and that is my point. E-clips may survive but they really haven't produced anything new. If they survive, I believe the e-clips will cost more than $2m and they will not see the huge demand precisely because it costs more than $2M. IMHO there are many times more owner pilots that can afford an airplane below $1m. I haven't done any market research other than looking at how many sub $1m planes are at the airport vs. $2m+ planes that are owner flown.

Once the price went up, it became unnaffordable to a large group of owner pilots and depositors. Now that demand has gone down, the price will continue to climb. That's the reason SN #s 31, 91, and 92 were recently available.

jetaburner said...

Gunner-

Well said. I'd like to add that the fundamental challenge with jets is that they burn more fuel and therefore carry a higher percentage of fuel weight in their useful load. This becomes very challenging as you shrink the plane because the laws of physics dictates that the useful load must decrease as well. This lack of efficiency in jets is precisely the reason the charter, corporate, and owner flown markets favor turboprops for short hops. E-clips thought they could engineer around this law of physiscs but really haven't. They just gave up cabin size, range, performance and payload for 2 jet engines. That is why this jet, especially at the $2m price level, will only serve a small niche market. That assumes e-clips survives to become a reputable company that can provide the necessary support their customers will demand.

FlightCenter said...

There are going to be a lot of Cirrus, Diamond and Piper owners who are very interested in stepping up to a single engine jet.

It is very likely that Cirrus will capture most of that market for two reasons.

1) They claim that they will deliver a single engine jet for under $1M.

2) They have the largest number of existing customers who have the financial wherewithal to step up to a $1M jet.


Most of the Cirrus and Diamond customers I've talked to are very happy with their relationships with Cirrus and Diamond and their first choice would be to buy their next airplane from the same company.

It will be an uphill battle for Eclipse to take those customers away from Cirrus and Diamond.

Bonanza Pilot said...

Agree flightcenter...but the pricing has already slipped. Cirrus was originally under 1 million...now I think it was under 1.2 million (not sure) and the Djet is right around 1.4 million bucks. I am sure there will be more slippage and price increases as things go forward...guess this explains why even the Piper Meridian costs almost 2 million.

jetaburner said...

Good point flightcenter. E -clips' has an uphill battle for market share now that thier jet is approaching the price of the Mustang, TBM850, Phenom100, PiperJet, and Honda Jet. This market and price reality will hurt the demand their jet which in turn will cause them not to meet the production volumes needed to keep the price at $2M. It is a downward spiral.

jetaburner said...

bonanza pilot-

I bought my Meridian in 2001 for $1.5M. Piper sold over 100 in the first year which was impressive. 02 and 03 were good years as well but production began to slide. I don't know for sure but I believe they sold 30ish in 2006 (maybe someone can confirm). Point being is that the market for a turbine powered, 1000nm IFR plane, priced between 1.5M to 1.9M (now) was not 5k units in 5 years. I think there are about 400 Meridians flying today after 7 years of production. Not a bad market but not 5K.

A twinjet definitely has more market appeal than a single turbine but it is less efficient than the Meridian, smaller, and more expensive than the Meridian's initial price. Don't see a 2-3K unit demand over 5 years from the owner flown market for a $1.8m+ VLJ (I'm assuming the 1-2K comes from the airtaxi business).

FlightCenter said...

Exe,

Thanks for the link to the article written by James Fallows about the DayJet first flight.

I wonder why DayJet wouldn't allow him to disclose the cost of the flight.

I really like Fallows' writing style and read his book Free Flight: From Airline Hell to a New Age of Travel back when it came out in June of 2001.

Fallows plugs his book in the article and pats himself on the back by saying that he called it right, that the air taxi market has been created by aircraft like the Eclipse 500 as predicted by him six years ago.

Fallows is also a Cirrus owner and he makes a plug in the article that Cirrus aircraft are also being used successfully in the air taxi market.

He was probably the most influential writer in the 2001 timeframe who was proclaiming Bruce Holme's vision (then at NASA) of a new way to travel in a compelling manner.

Fallows' book was a pure gift to both Vern and Alan Klapmeirer who were actively raising money for their companies in 2001 and trying to attract new customers for their revolutionary aircraft.

I believe I received a copy of the book from both Vern and Alan.

Heady times for general aviation in the summer of 2001.

Gunner said...

My guess is that a LOT of pilots that go for the Eclipse price point, are really conning themselves into believing they'll be able to afford the insurance, fuel and maintenance. When reality sets in, a lot of these owners are gonna drop right back to the planes they can afford; those who can afford to run the EA-50X will step up to other offerings quickly.

Not to say there isn't a market. It's just not a large one. And not a good one.
Gunner

hummer said...

I must disagree with almost everyone on this blog as it pertains to the market for the Eclipse. The basic error is looking at the market as it stands today: airtaxi, corporate and owner/operator and making projections into the future.
The market, if you can visualize a large triangle, are all of those millions of businesses today that can not justify a six million dollar jet and two pilots sitting around doing nothing.
Those businesses could however, either individually or collectively cost justify a small efficient jet with one pilot cross trained in another position.
The top 10% of the triangle is already supported by corporate flight departments or NetJets.
The next 30% of the market is what I am referring to.
Then consider professional practices: doctors, denist, attorneys etc. are an untapped market either individually or combined that have great need (and want) for efficient and fast travel.
So adding the businesses and the professional practices who have need (and wants) and CREATING this market is what the future holds.
Let's face it; the airline system is broken and not likely to improve.
Fuel is $80. a barrel and going up.
There can be created an entirely new and huge market for Eclipse type aircraft if someone could see it and exploit it.
So look into the future; not what is but what can be!

FlightCenter said...

JetA,

To your point, Piper has shipped 301 Meridians as of June 30, 2007 according to GAMA.

Pilatus shipped 686 PC-12 aircraft from 1996 to June 30, 2007.

Socata shipped 296 TBMs over the same time period.

That is a total of 1,283 for all three aircraft in a little more than 10 years or about 122 per year.

hummer said...

As an example:
Relate to the house size each of you were raised in.
Myself, our family had a 600 sq. ft home with a coal furnace in the basement. It was very adequate.
We had one car. That's all the family could/or use since my mother remained at home and raise us.
Neither of my parents attended college and no one that I knew did.
But those were the 1940's and 1950's.
I repectfully submit that a lot of people on this blog are looking at the market based on the 1940's & 1950's.

jetaburner said...

Hummer-

Interesting point with your market triangle but I think we would have already seen compelling evidence of the large demand with currently available products. Used turboprops and jets start as low as $600k. New ones start at $1.9M (the Meridian). The e-clips is already $1.8M and only offers Meridian type performance at higher operating costs. I don't know of any Meridians that are being used for airtaxis. Why? Is it because it has a single engine? Is so then why has the Cirrus succeeded? I believe it is because the Meridian is too close to the charter costs of twin turboprops and jets. Therefore there is not enough differentiation in price to justify its use.

According to previous discussions on this blog, the price difference between chartering a whole e-clips and a much larger twin turboprop or even older jet isn't much. So it seems that the e-clips model depends on the success of the airtaxi. I don't think people will be willing to pay a premium to sit with complete strangers in such a small cabin. IMHO.

Vern originally stated that he would be able to keep the price low due to large production volumes. That was when he originally priced the plane at $895K. It has more than doubled in price. There is also a lot more competition in the market today so even if the market is for a couple of thousands how many do you think e-clips will get? Can they survive with their existing business model or are the dinasaurs right?

jetaburner said...

flightcenter-

Thanks for the #s. So, the market for single, pressurized, turboprops is 1,283 over the last 10 years. 2 are more expensive than the e-clips but are much more capable when it comes to size, payload, and range. The Meridian is about the same price and has similiar performance numbers but is more efficient than the e-clips. Of course, as the faithful will point out, they are not twin jets and that is all the difference. Of course it is!!

Do you have numbers for the CJs?

hummer said...

JetaBurner
Studying the DayJet model over some time now and in some depth, I can not see how it can survive.
But I would lay money on NA Jet, Pogo and Lineair as long as they stay small.
But the market that I am referring to is a market yet to be CREATED.
My grandmother never had a vacumn cleaner but you could eat off her floors because they were so clean.
My mother had a vacumn cleaner and it saved her a lot of time and work.
A new market was created and it saved women time and effort.
We had a coal burning stove in our home as I mentioned. Keep us warm but was dirty and took a lot of work.
Today I have heating and airconditioning on each level separately of our home.
A new market was created.
Do you get the point.

Ken Meyer said...

Jetaburner wrote,

"The e-clips is already $1.8M and only offers Meridian type performance at higher operating costs."

You seem like a nice guy, but for some reason you keep saying pretty much the same incorrect thing over and over again.

First off, the Eclipse doesn't cost $1.8M. It is $1.595 in June, 2006 dollars. As of today, that would make it at least $150K less than you keep citing.

But the bigger issue is performance--you say the Eclipse delivers Meridian performance. That's flat out wrong.

Meridian is a nice plane, but its max cruise speed is about 100 knots slower than the Elipse, its max climbrate is just over half of the Eclipse, its ceiling is 11,000 feet lower, its payload is less, and its engine-out performance is dramatically less. And it is a single engine plane with a funny spinning thing on it that people don't want any more.

The other thing you've been saying a lot that's wrong is that the Eclipse doesn't have the efficiency to make it as a charter plane. The data say otherwise--here is a comparison of the block fuel burn (in nautical miles per gallon) for a series of aircraft, courtesy of Conklin & de Decker:

Meridian 5.7
TBM 4.1
Eclipse 4.0
421 3.4
690 3.4
C90 2.5
Citation ISP 2.0
CJ2 2.6
CJ1 2.5


The only one that is appreciably better than the Eclipse is the Meridian, and there are a whole host of reasons why it cannot be a successful charter plane.

Even the TBM gets the same block fuel economy as the Eclipse; the Eclipse is faster, doesn't have a propeller, and offers the buying public twin engine safety they're asking for.

There's nothing wrong with what you're saying except that it's incorrect. The Eclipse is the very first truly efficient jet to come along, and that is why charter operators and individual owners are embracing it.

Ken

Niner Zulu said...

hummer,
There is no doubt that there is a "new market" for air taxi travel. I don't think anyone would argue that point with you.

The real question is - is the market as large as what Dayjet & Eclipse would have us believe?

I don't think so. Not by a long shot. It's too expensive for the average traveler and many, if not most, people have an innate fear of flying in small airplanes. It will be interesting to see how many people get right up to the aircraft, only to turn around at the last minute and cancel their flight.

Ken - most Meridian owners cruise around 260 kts. Eclipse owners are going to be aroudn 320 kts. That's 60 kts difference in the real world, not 100.

Gunner said...

Hummer said:
the market that I am referring to is a market yet to be CREATED.

One of the most astute observations yet. Well done. The WAS the dream. A $900K jet that could do everything the big boys could; affordably. It would have driven more people to become pilots and more to step up from their current aircraft.

It was the dream borne of the likes of Microsoft....creating a market where none before existed.

But the Eclipse isn't a gas sipping, reliable $900K jet. It's around $2mill and rising. How many people do you think are going to step into this "created" market and pony up a minimum of $200K per year in op expenses?

I'm sorry. This isn't a color TV or even an IBM AT. This is a wealthy (wo)man's toy. Somebody (Whytech?) used a wealth benchmark of about $25MM to be in this market. I'd say that is right on the money, unless you're a young multi-million per year earner.

Gunner

jetaburner said...

Hummer-

I do get the point I just don't see how e-clips is creating a new market. It isn't the revolutionary product that was originally promised. Cessna produces the Mustang for $2.8M and they will be happy if they sell a couple of hundred of them, not thousands, over the next several years. Cessna's pricing structure reflects their market research and production scale.

E-clips is counting on huge production volumes which will not be realized because there isn't anything revolutionary about the e-clips compared to what is already offered in the market place.

Do I think over the next 10 years that some owner pilots will transition to single and twin engine jets? Yes. But this market will be shared among many manufacturers, will not be revolutionary in nature, and instead the consumer will be faced with the classic decision matrix of cost, size, efficiency, range, and payload. The turboprops, both single and twin, will survive and continue serving their niche markets. It is really no different than when Cessna started selling the CJ in 90s. The bar is just being lowered further but at the expense of range and payload. No magic or paradigm shifting technology present. In your example, the vacuum cleaner already existed, it is just getting a little cheaper but at the expense of loosing some of its power and capability.

airtaximan said...

"Ken - most Meridian owners cruise around 260 kts. Eclipse owners are going to be aroudn 320 kts. That's 60 kts difference in the real world, not 100."

add a stop imposed by Dayjet, and well... yu are slower in the e-taxi than the prop charter.

Add the 3-6 hour window of inopportunity, and well... might as well drive.

Say you wish to go with an associate...and you need to take two seperate planes at two different times... start to giggle...

Consider the price... and you can forget it.

Ken, the business depends on the TAXI model...and the order book is more than half Taxis...

You can keep flashing the specs all you want - the taxi model is MORE IMPORTANT than the specs in the real world... that's why all the "sisterhood incest" between dayjet and e-clips. They are trying their best...

But somehow, either more passengers need to share the flights so the price is in line with reason for them... or the planes need to be smaller and more cost effective for one or two... cirrus SR22's compete, as do small singles and twins.

In the shot flights, no one will pay 4x or more to fly the teeeny-jet...sorry...and there is NO time saving, all things considered.

Better find another e-xcuse for high rate production and low cost fast. or take Mouse's suggestion and trade for an earlier position soon.

"Half a loaf is better than no loaf at all" - right? Isn't that the real Die-hard e-clips motto?

Stan Blankenship said...

Brought forward for better visibility:

Copernicus said...

I gave an Eclipse deposit on day 1 and have experienced all the tribulations recounted on this site. The history may be shameful for the company and its management and unfair and supremely disappointing to depositors. But it is past.

When, as a customer, one has been treated in the Eclipse manner, the proper reaction in our competitive economy is to walk out, cancel the order and proceed to the next alternative. I would do that in a minute, but WHAT IS THE ALTERNATIVE? My price is $1.35 million for a twin engine jet that goes well over 300 knots, about 1000 miles and has (let's assume they get it figured out, I think they will) a great electronics system and carries almost 700 pounds with the tanks full.

For a like amount, I could get a 5 year old Meridian with 700 hours on the engine. It goes slower, can't carry as much weight and has less sophisticated "generation 1" glass instruments. For 50% more than my Eclipse price I could get a new Meridian with Avidyne. For double my price and 50% more operating costs, I could get a Mustang.

Bottom line: for all the problems and broken promises and for all the uncertainties, it is still worth it for me to "hang in there."

1:14 PM, September 18, 2007

hummer said...

The market yet to be CREATED, gentleman, is the traveling business owners, professional practices and public (who can afford it). I think that DayJet attempted a revolutionary idea. . .I can't see it happening. But there will be other ideas, some working and some not so good. It is not the aircraft nor the pilot; it is
effective, realitively inexpensive, convenient air travel from a small local airport.
"Find a need that affects millions of people, and find a way to fullfill that need at a profit."
Like the evolution of housecleaning, heating and airconditioning, trains/trucking, medical science. . .
Light Jet travel will become a reality in some shape or form.
It will happen. Someone will go out and explain (sell) the benefits to those early adopters that will be ready and willing.

airtaximan said...

precisely, and if this guy is smart or foolish, depending on how you interpret what "you wish for"... he better take an earlier position quick...

If the dayjet model fails to live up to the promise, there will be no sub $2M jets to be had...

Plsu all the lowballed MRO and spares costs will go up accordingly, as there is a market for apparently 100-200 per year for 15 or 20 years...conventional rates=conventional prices...

This guy IS ONLY a customer f the plane is really, really under priced, which it is now.

Turboprop_pilot said...

Ken:

You keep saying that people do not want propellers- empty words. With oil at $80/barrel the sales of commercial turboprops have soared while RJ sales are falling (BusinessWeek a couple of weeks ago). There are real advantages to props besides better economy.

TP

airtaximan said...

Hummer,

"Light Jet travel will become a reality in some shape or form.
It will happen. Someone will go out and explain (sell) the benefits to those early adopters that will be ready and willing."

Ed's the right guy to sell the concept and benefits, perhaps. He was very successful in IT at doing just this.

Problem is, there is already competition, THAT's your big mistake IMHO. There are 10,000 prop providing comparable service in the same markets. Actually BETTER service (truly on-demand charter no 3-6 hour windows, same size planes, no stops, you rent the whole plane for a cost that is is 1/2-1/4 the dayjet model).

- the market is there...
- the jet makes no difference in travel time...
- the jet makes no positive difference in cost, its higher

WTF?

You seem smart and informed, pls show me where I'm wrong.

hummer said...

ATM
The best thing that could happen right now for Eclipse is for DayJet to stall. (No pun intended)
Those aircraft allocated to DayJet could be sold on the open market for about $1.85 ML and give a entirely new meaning to two production lines.
This would go a long way in helping Eclipse with potential financial problems.

airtaximan said...

Sam Walton and his Brother scouted property for years flying their little Mooney around...

There are 10,000 prop in part 135 today... doing the same mission as dayjet/e-clips

Satsair is doing terrific...

People are not stupid.

Hummer, I'd say your anaylsis of central heating and Vacuums provided real advantages, in markets that were underserved - not new markets. Heat and cleaning equipment were established markets -

I think waht you have hear with e-clips is more like a gasoline-powered-turtle-neck...

expensive beyond the benefits, in reality..

hummer said...

WhyTech
Thank you. You get it. I just happen to disagree with your conclusion. I could make a very valid argument on the other side.

WhyTech said...

hummer said:

"CREATING this market is what the future holds."

I dont disagree with the concept; your examples and many others support this notion in principle. However, for a new market to be created, there must be a "whole product" available. This is much more than the jet at a low price point. It also includes everything else needed to use the jet effectively, such as training, maintenence, flight crews, insurance, fuel, etc, and all of this combined at an acceptable cost and convenience level. The market you suggest may come about if the economics work and the jet is NOT owner flown. This means air taxi, fractional ownership programs etc. You typical doctor, dentist, business exce, etc is NOT going to accept the time and hassle required to be an experienced, competent, safe jet pilot. There will be some aviation enthusiasts who will make this commitment to varying degrees, but this is the owner/pilot segmegt much discussed here already, and not the large "new" market you describe. Could this happen? Absolutely. Will it happen? IMO,probably not, and if so, not in a time frame sufficiently close in to save E-clips. What could drive this market evolution is a radical jump forward in technology that allows the casual "pilot" to confidently and safely drive one of these things for routine travel, just as most folks use a car today. Not going to happen in our lifetime, at least, not in mine.

WT

airtaximan said...

hummer, if Dayjet even hiccups, its all over for everyone, in my opinion.

Perhaps you are right though...

Do you think the market is large enough for profitability at $1.8 million? 500 per year to BE? suppliers on curves based on discounts at which point 500/year
is BE?

will any more equity come along if dayjet is gone?

I do not see it.

airtaximan said...

Hummer,

you keep saying its a "new market"

please explain how any of this is new? remember the 10,000 props doing the same mission, cheaper, and as fast, for the last 30 years...

hummer said...

ATM
"prop jobs" can be equated to the rail system. We have it an it works.
"jets" can be equated with the trucking industry.
Realize that trains can carry a lot more freight a lot cheaper than trucks and they were in existence a very long time before trucking.
Airlines are broken yet passengers increase. It is simply because there has not been a demonstrated alternative.
If there were a Part XXX new FAR that allowed something like the trucker/broker relationship, maybe this would be the alternative. If not, perhaps something else.

airtaximan said...

Hummer, I'm dense...I still do not see the analogy...sorry


""prop jobs" can be equated to the rail system. We have it an it works."

The rail system gave way to cars, due to increased flexibility (no tracks) and easier access (everyone could afford them).

The e-500 is no different in reality (cost, speed, load) than the props - as a matter of fact, if sharing the cost between passengers is important, perhaps the larger props have an advantage, here.

I'm not getting your point, and I'd like to see it better.

hummer said...

ATM
My guess is that Eclipse could auction current airmod aircraft
at ten a month. The opening bid
would be $1.7 Ml. This would
provide and additional 17 ML
revenue that Ecipse so sorely needs.
The 10 a month would be rather short term. Kind of like a life preserver
thrown to a drowning person:
short term but if use properly, it works!

airtaximan said...

"Airlines are broken yet passengers increase. It is simply because there has not been a demonstrated alternative."

conventional charter IS growing...
- alternative to the airlines... interesting concept - Dayjet is competing with car trips...

Perhaps you are right...the answer might be compete with the airlines at their game...take the higher fare passengers away from them.

What equipment would you use? Apparently, the e-500 is perfect for Dayjet's 300 mile mission with 2 pax...

wouldn;'t you use a larger plane so you could share the fare between more passengers, not impose a stop and go further than a car trip?

Ken Meyer said...

niner zulu wrote,

"Ken - most Meridian owners cruise around 260 kts. Eclipse owners are going to be aroudn 320 kts. That's 60 kts difference in the real world, not 100."

Hmmm. I disagree, although I think it depends a bit on the time of the year. All turbines take a hit on hot days, but the Eclipse loses more speed than the Meridian does in hot temps. Take a look at a typical flight that I snapped just now off Flightaware:

Eclipse in Flight 9-18-07

You can ignore the DayJet plane; they seem to like LRC. It's the other plane I want you to examine.

That plane is going 333 kts across the ground at FL380 with a forecast headwind component of 8 knots. That would make the true airspeed 341 KTAS. Temp was forecast at ISA + 4 at FL 380.

And that's a pre-aeromod airplane. The aeromods add 15 knots or so under the same conditions. The aeromod Eclipse 500's are very likely to cruise at least 90 knots faster than a Meridian much of the year, not 60 knots.

Ken

FlightCenter said...

There were 462 CJ1 and CJ1+ aircraft delivered between 1996 and 2006.

There were 278 CJ2 and CJ2+ aircraft delivered from 2000 to 2006.

hummer said...

ATM
The tool right now is the Eclipse EA500.
It must be single pilot operation.
Example:
I live outside of St. Louis.
There are several daily flights from Lambert to O'hare & Midway by 121.
Could I get four passengers to pay $375 per trip to lets say Elgin, IL
from say Spirit airport?
Could I get four passengers to pay $375 per trip from Elgin, IL to Spirit?
With the proper planning and promotion, I truly believe so.
So $375. x 4 x 2 equals $3,000 round trip.
On a good day I could make three trips.
The passengers would be those who would have to drive 45 minutes to Lambert and arrive 1 to 2 hours ahead of time. The would stand in line 15 minutes to a half hour
and go through the nonsense of emptying their pockets, take their shoes off. . .you know the drill. They would then have to wait another half hour to board and if they were unlucky, another hour or so in line on the tarmack to depart for Chicago. When they returned, it would be a similar procedure.
This is only one example of competing with the status quo.
There are a hundred other alternatives that could be proven viable.

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sparky said...

hummer said:

My guess is that Eclipse could auction current airmod aircraft
at ten a month.

Where is eclipse going to get ten aircraft a month?

hummer said...

Sparky
I'll bet it could be before the next round of hat-in-hand begging for funds. But maybe it could be just 5 or 6 aircraft. You think that would help? Could it make payroll for the month? Probably piss a lot of people off. . .but, hey sure beats the alternative.

EclipseBlogger said...

...and did you know the human head weighs eight pounds?

anonymous avionics engineer said...

Where is eclipse going to get ten aircraft a month?


They will buy them on the futures market of vaporware aircraft, like everyone else.

EclipseBlogger said...

Just released from AIN:

Forecast: Turboprop Market To Slow
In a study released today entitled “The Market for General Aviation/Utility Aircraft 2007-2016,” Forecast International said it anticipates a decline in corporate demand for twin turboprops in favor of the fractional ownership of turbofan-powered aircraft. Further, it expects this trend to accelerate as more sub-$4 million very light jets are delivered. While VLJs can offer some speed advantage and can climb above weather at prices that are competitive with those of twin turboprops, Forecast International does not expect to see demand for twin turboprops end altogether. “These aircraft offer far more spacious cabins than the typical VLJ, and not all operators will be willing to trade space for speed,” the company noted. Its forecast calls for deliveries of 4,660 turboprops worth $13.7 billion during the 10-year period. This market segment accounts for 17.2 percent of the predicted 22,477 piston and turboprop deliveries between 2007 and 2016, but still comprises 60 percent of the estimated $22.5 billion worth of billings. Business jet production was excluded from this study.

EclipseBlogger said...

Lawyers should never ask a Mississippi grandma a question if they aren't prepared for the answer. In a trial, a Southern small-town prosecuting attorney called his first witness, a grand motherly, elderly woman to the stand.

He approached her and asked, "Mrs. Jones, do you know me?"

She responded, "Why, yes, I do know you, Mr. Williams. I've known you since you were a young boy, and frankly, you've been a big disappointment to me. You lie, you cheat on your wife, and you manipulate people and talk about them behind their backs. You think you're a big shot when you haven't the brains to realize you never will amount to anything more than a two-bit paper pusher. Yes, I know you."

The lawyer was stunned! Not knowing what else to do, he pointed across the room and asked, "Mrs. Jones, do you know the defense attorney?"

She again replied, "Why, yes, I do. I've known Mr. Bradley since he was a youngster, too. He's lazy, bigoted, and he has a drinking problem. He can't build a normal relationship with anyone and his law practice is one of the worst in the entire state. Not to mention he cheated on his wife with three different women. One of them was your wife. Yes, I know him."

The defense attorney almost died. The judge asked both counselors to approach the bench and, in a very quiet voice, said,

"If either of you fucking idiots asks her if she knows me, I'll send you to the electric chair."

Shane Price said...

Eclipseblogger,

I thought it was lethal injection in Mississippi...

Shane

Shane Price said...

.... but very funny!

Shane

Shane Price said...

Ken,

It won't matter what the block fuel burn is.

DayJet will fold, followed in short order by Eclipse.

When that happens, the REAL cost of trying to keep an unsupported, half finished aircraft going will make fuel the LEAST important element.

Shane

Shane Price said...

Hummer,

There might be a market for some sort of air taxi in certain parts of the US of A.

The E499.5 might (if it ever becomes a full fat E500) have a role therein.

Over here, no chance. The sort of costs in Europe (pilots, ground staff, CSR's etc etc) will force the price out of the reach of even the most wealthy companies.

When you compare what you can do on a train, or even in a car, in terms of ground covered in a given time, the numbers being talked about here do not make sense.

Sorry...

On a another matter, I hear that lending has tightened here in the past 48 hours. Interest rates up.

Toys are getting expensive again.

Shane

EclipseOwner387 said...

Hummer,

I agree. Most small corporations will prefer a twin engine Jet because that is all they really believe in. Experienced turboprop guys like Turboprop_pilot would argue the true benefits of a turboprop plane - as would I. But we have first hand experience. You ask a non-pilot Doctor or Lawyer or CEO what he prefers for $2 Million or less and they will pick the Twin Jet. Only the Eclipse has that offering at this point. Will Eclipse survive? I don't know. But Hummer is accurate. A new market is being created. I actually fell in that category not too long ago, but the difference is I am the type that needs to have good knowledge on my endevours. Thus, I became a pilot. Before becoming a pilot, I would not have been comfortable using a single engine turboprop for serious business flying. Now I think it is a great alternative to a Jet. But as a pilot, I also want more speed and gadgets. The Eclipse promises that.

I feel confident the Eclipse (aeromod) will be a realistic 70-100 Knot faster plane than a Piper Turboprop at HSC. The TBM850 is the closest turboprop comparison right now to an Eclipse. If it was a similar price as an Eclipse, I would buy one right now. Even though most novices would think of it as a single engine puddle jumper and no amount of money would get them to take a ride in it. I still have friends tell me, "I will fly in your Eclipse but not that prop plane!"

My 2 cents.

EclipseOwner387 said...

9Z,

Conversation on the Eclipse forum has been that Long Range Cruise will actually cost you more than the fuel savings due to engine maintenance insurance, TTAF depreciation, JetComplete, etc. Thus, HSC would be the first choice if the range would allow. I have not done the math but seems reasonable.


If you pay as you go for maintenance this may not hold true.

airtaximan said...

"I still have friends tell me, "I will fly in your Eclipse but not that prop plane!"

Interesting comment... a while back, we were involved in the JT issue, and I suggested his insurance company might not let him (insure him to) fly an e-clips. A very samrt person corrected by silly remark - and stated that the policy limits would be the max exposure they would have regarding JT.

I was trying to make a point, andmade it poorly, and (I cannot remember who it was) quickly brought be back to center.

BUT, the main point about insurance is critical, and I believe its related to the remark by EOXXX...

Here goes: many companies I have discussed VLJs and e-clips with INSIST on a certain amount of insurance coverage when they fly their people around. This is for their fleet/flight department, part 135 suplimental, charter, etc...

So, I contend thaqt while Eo says his buddies prefer jets and his e-500 to props, the insurance companies who are being called upon to provide BIG coverage required by major companies are balking at e-clips.

Another interesting development is reflected in Vern's desire to replace a pilot with HAL or a "remote" pilot. Apparently, he has no problem trusting a computer to land the plane in the event of pilot incapacitation - neither does Christian Dies, either BTW.

Guesswhat - insurance companies are balking big time.

http://www.flightglobal.com
/articles/2007/09/17/216823/
eclipse-and-diamond-agree
-on-pilot-incapacitation
-aircraft-recovery.html

Sorry about the long link, its Flight International from yesterday.

I would think the Operator might be leading this effort... in case he sees the economic reality of the extra load and cost of a second pilot - but perhaps e-clips understands this limitation better than the Operator at this point?

Anyhow, there are a lot of opinions required before anyone decides to fly on these planes, and the personal preferences are not always the determining factor.

Just a real life observation regarding taxi.

WhyTech said...

EO387 said:

"But Hummer is accurate. A new market is being created"

I wish to disagree. What is happening here is that the owner/pilot segment is becoming a bit larger by attracting some "almost aviation enthusiasts" at the margin, drawn in by the over-hyped promise of the VLJ, but this is this not the large "new" market hummer has identified.

The market hummer is forecasting will require new participants on a scale never before seen in general aviation, and this is going to require economics and convenience never before seen in general aviation, and a wholesale dumbing down of the knowledge, skills, and judgment required to operate an aircraft safely. This is going to mean getting the "pilot" substantially (but not completely) out of the loop, with expert systems/artifical intelligence and automation in the planning/dispatch functions and ATC systems that are at most a gleam in the eye of a very few forward thinkers at present. The ATC system alone will regulate the rate at which hummer's "new" market segment evolves since the market cannot happen without advances in the ATC system that are at least 2-3 generations forward of today.

Just think of what it takes to get an instrument rating today, let alone to use it competently and safely. Who is going to do this except a relatively few passionate souls (like many of us bloggers, less than 1% of the population) for whom this is much more than just point A to point B. I just picked up a copy of the newest version of the FAA Instrument Procedures Handbook. If you want an eye opener re the rapidly escalating complexity of the IFR system, read this one cover to cover. Even with a PhD in engineering, and 40 + years in aviation, I find myself on the edge of intimidation by the complexity of this stuff. (Despite this, I recommend this publication highly; its one of the few FAA publications that is well written, readable, and not written in government speak.)
So, the casual "new" market "pilot" is going to willinigly spend the time to learn, understand, and put this to use? I dont think so. (My comments assume, of course, that E-clips and similar acft will be operating under IFR; if not, its somewhat easier re pilot skills, but then the acft utility will be so low that no one will want to do it anyway.)

On the other hand, if the economics can be made to work with professional pilots flying the acft (which I seriously doubt) then the probability of hummer's "new" market emerging goes up significantly.

WT

airtaximan said...

Hummer, lets say you are correct:

"So $375. x 4 x 2 equals $3,000 round trip."

I could find six or eight, put them in a turbo prop, pilot and co-pilot and charge them less ($100 off).... and you would be toast.

I could haul packages, on the same flights, and charge even less...

Hummer, are you in the charter business? Again, there are 10,000 planes doing the routes you suggest are fertile... be careful. Vern has everyone thinking it "sounds" good... funny how he NEVER mentions the prop planes doing the same missions, and Dayjet routes are competing with car trips.

I think you need a different plane.

interested eclipse follower said...

There are people using the 500 now for missions that make sense. Take the owner of the Kiernan Companies of Coronado CA. N612KB. Registered owners of SN 26 delivered 7/28. Interesting pattern of flights. There are a lot of small businesses that need a plane (and prefer a jet) for 1, 2 or 3 to get a lot of productivity out of direct flights. A lot charter today but are tired of opaying for empty legs. A lot have King Airs. But a lot may just be eclipse candidates as well.

http://flightaware.com/live/flight/N612KB/history

Date Type Origin Destination Departure Arrival Duration
18-Sep-2007 EA50/A Tucson Intl (KTUS) Yuma Mcas/Yuma Intl (KYUM) 04:42PM MST 04:42PM MST 0:00
18-Sep-2007 EA50/A Telluride Rgnl (KTEX) Tucson Intl (KTUS) 03:05PM MDT 03:36PM MST 1:31
18-Sep-2007 EA50/A San Diego Intl (KSAN) Telluride Rgnl (KTEX) 06:56AM PDT 09:43AM MDT 1:47
14-Sep-2007 EA50/A Tucson Intl (KTUS) San Diego Intl (KSAN) 04:11PM MST 05:33PM PDT 1:22
14-Sep-2007 EA50/A Albuquerque Intl Sunport (KABQ) Tucson Intl (KTUS) 01:18PM MDT 01:30PM MST 1:12
14-Sep-2007 EA50/A Telluride Rgnl (KTEX) Albuquerque Intl Sunport (KABQ) 11:05AM MDT 11:40AM MDT 0:35
14-Sep-2007 EA50/A Albuquerque Intl Sunport (KABQ) Telluride Rgnl (KTEX) 09:07AM MDT 10:00AM MDT 0:53

airtaximan said...

"Where is eclipse going to get ten aircraft a month?"

There are still about 10 left from the 51 started a year or so ago... then...they have real issues.

This was intended to be a little funny - but, I suspect, after the intial 51 from long long ago are "delivered" we're going to see real problems emerging.

Going from 50 airplaens in a year to 30 a month is for all intents and purposes a rediculous thing to even attempt. I suspect they have enough in-work to show one month of close to 20-25 planes, and then, they are stalled BIG TIME.

No way the supply chain can crank it up. No way given the issues with non-confomances that they have adequate inventory.

I'd say we hear a round of BS like "we have 30 planes in work to bedelivered by (dste)..." and such, but no way they can keep the line going given what we've heard, and the track record.

hummer said...

ATM
Owned and operated a Part 135 operation in Wisconsin for 3 1/2 years. We had an Emery contract
out of Milwaukee and picked up and delivered freight all over Wisconsin and the upper Michigan. We flew 4 Cessna 207 and 2 Beech 18's. I hold a ASMEL, commerical and instrument rating. Had 6 pilots one mechanic and one salesman. No turbine time.
So my thoughts and opinions are based on some experience.
We had a few very good pilots. Do you understand that truck drivers with a CDL were earning more that our commercial pilots.
Guess what. A truck driver today earns more than a commercial pilot in the right seat of a commuter?

WhyTech said...

Hummer said:

"A truck driver today earns more than a commercial pilot in the right seat of a commuter?"

Unfortunately, flipping burgers pays more than the right seat of some commuters.

WT

airtaximan said...

"Guess what. A truck driver today earns more than a commercial pilot in the right seat of a commuter?"

amazing, isn't it?

I think you probably have some terrific ideas... especially the ones forma while back offering owners the "risk" of the plane, and you providing operations, management, and revenue. Is this still on the table? Any takers?

What scale do you envision your air taxi? How many planes?

There's a company I know that has nailed down a taxi model, and has, for example large scale in mind, together with bulk fuel at airline fuel costs. This presents a huge advantage...

Any thoughts?

PS. I still think e-clips is the wrong plane, but you seem to be convinced, which is cool by me. I hope you enjoyed todays "discussion" on this as much as I did - it never got rude, and I feel like I learnt a lot. Thanks.

hummer said...

Thanks for the constuctive discourse.
Being now in Missouri, it is the "show me" state. In other words, performance talks and BS walks.
We'll see what the future holds.
Nuff said.

flightguy said...

Hummer,

The market that you are referring about creating is the same market that has existed for Beech Bonanzas. The doctors and lawyers have been augering them in for years. More money than brains. That is still a small part of the overall owner/pilot market.

We'll see.

flightguy said...

Gunner,

What you just described is the market for the "cheap jet". What do you think will happen when it is not so cheap in cost, but cheap in quality?

Gunner said...

Been reading today's entries and there's much healthy tossing of ideas. What struck me, however, was EO's description of a conversation on the Owners' Board regarding the economies of LRC vs MCT.

It just seems like a strange conversation to me, as I just assumed most of us set power based on avoiding stops, rather than economy of operation.

I don't think I'd be real interested in owning any aircraft and laboring to find out which setting costs less, long term. If I can make it at Max Cruise, I fly it that way; if I can't but Long Range Cruise saves me a fuel stop, that's my setting.

I've been on the inside of the Owners Forum. Very few of these guys are from the poor side of the tracks. But it sure seems like a strange conversation to be having; especially if the difference in a year of flying is gonna amount to a few thousand bucks compared to a $200K operating budget.

When we own our own aircraft, we're purchasing time, plain and simple. Enjoy the luxury.
Gunner

Ken Meyer said...

AT wrote,

"There are still about 10 left from the 51 started a year or so ago"

AT, you've been telling us for months about how Eclipse started all these planes a year ago.

I think it's time we clear the air on this one. It so happens I have some factory photos from a year ago. September 30, 2006 to be exact.

This is what S/N 11 looked like on 9/30/06 (you can see the S/N on it).

And here is S/N 12 on 9/30/06.

Everybody can see for themselves that they were just starting S/N 11 and S/N 12 a year ago. This crap about 50 or more planes being well along in construction for over a year is just BS.

Every time you use BS to knock the plane, you're really telling the world the Eclipse is a pretty good plane that you can't knock without resorting to lies.

Ken

EclipseOwner387 said...

flightguy,

Bonanza doesn't require a type rating. I think you will be wildly mistaken on your prediction.

Ken Meyer said...

gunner wrote,

"I don't think I'd be real interested in owning any aircraft and laboring to find out which setting costs less, long term."

The beauty of the Eclipse is that it is a multipurpose airplane--

It can be run at high speed and dash along at 370 KTAS.

Or it can be flown low and slow like a turboprop.

Some people are worried that the VLJs won't always get the altitude assignments their owners want. But it turns out that's no problem. Held down to the twenties, the Eclipse can be powered back to run at turboprop speeds and turboprop fuel burns.

But even low and slow, the Eclipse will run 100 knots faster than your Baron!

Ken

flightguy said...

eo387,

If the eclipse requires a type rating, then why would the same market that already exists buy an Eclipse?

EclipseOwner387 said...

Gunner,

My response was directed towards 9Z comment about fuel burn and the sticker shock twin jet owners may have. The conversation on the forum was a result of why fly LRC at FL410 unless you have to (over weather, range, etc.) Not a strange conversation at all. I found it quite interesting.

flightguy said...

Ken,

Is this the release to the 50 aircraft that Eclipse was getting supplies and inventory to produce last year?

http://www.eclipseaviation.com/index.php?option=com_newsroom&task=viewpr&id=1086&Itemid=52

EclipseOwner387 said...

FlightGuy,

Because the market you are discussing isn't the market I was discussing. I was discussing the non-pilot professional or small business willing to part with enough money to buy an Eclipse and willing to hire a pilot or fractionalize thru a management company but not willing to buy a $3+ million, high cost to operate alternative.

flightguy said...

Any news about Eclipse and NBAA? What stunt is Eclipse working on next? The conjet is worth what 10 order deposits? Got money? Which new market are they reaching for now? What is the new innovative disruptive technology? How is Avio NG? Icing season starts pretty soon, especially in the mountains, how is FIKI? Early depositors, when is the next round of financing? The end of this blog, hardly!!

flightguy said...

EO387,

I would say that the small business owner may have incentive to use a jet card like net jets or perhaps afractional ownership. The numbers for maintenance an upkeep are still to expensive for the small business owner. Dollars do not scale.

EclipseOwner387 said...

FlightGuy,

A jet card is still not the same as owning your own plane. I have looked at it and I can't make myself do it. I have hired a pro pilot that also provides other corporate services. It scales fine for me and would work very well with the Eclipse platform. I can't possibly be that unique and others like me would find this of great interest.

Plus - owning your own plane is pretty cool.

;-)

flightguy said...

You're in what the top 2-5% of the population?

Gunner said...

Ken said:
"But even low and slow, the Eclipse will run 100 knots faster than your Baron!"

Ouch, that cuts to the quick, my Brother. But it's not like I haven't demonstrated the willingness to pay the Eclipse admission cost, plus considerably more. I just wasn't impressed with Eclipse....so, I walked. Get over it.

Oh, I get it....you're razzin' me for being a lowly Baron owner, right? That's funny, given the value of a 30 year old, in-flight crashed Cessna 340.
Gunner

EclipseOwner387 said...

1

flightguy said...

EO387,

Thanks for being honest. That 1% is worth what 50-75 sales a year given the competition.

mouse said...

Ken, this is August of 2007, what are the dollars today since most people don't have a way-back machine like you?

The following all revloves around the air Taxi scenario. Private aircraft are too much of a pain to consider because every single owner has a specific trip they want to prove, regardless of whether they fly once a year or never. (Ken, in your case it's never because you will never own one, and if in your dreams you did, you would run out of fuel and be in the same boat as the single TPs you keep putting down because you really think you can full range out of the plane.

Fuel burn is so low in the single engine turboprops and the Eclipse that it is a non-issue. The price of turbine addmission is fuel bills. Only cheap Non-Buyers like you worry about those things.

Same goes for altitude. Why would anyone care about the fuel savings/burn by going up high if you do not need to? The Eclipse has no performance to go up there, the range is just about irrelevant because nobody is going to be flying those long trips. Everyone keeps pretending their needs are the 1% trip when in reality it's a short 150-300 mile mission world.

Your block fuel burns and all your other numbers are so un-real world because the Eclipse will need a lot more time to settle into its real fuel burn numbers; summer vs. winter, low vs. med/high altitude, distance/range actually flown, # of approachs, ATC handling, Etc.

People who buy jets (no matter the size, its the attitude not the cost) do not worry about prices like you do. You do not buy a yacht based on fuel usage (ever wonder why their tanks are so big andtheir range is so small?) How much hay your horse eats, or how much it costs to air-condition your vacation home...

If you have to count pennies you better fly Southwest... And if you make any judgements on how, when and what to fly by the cost, you better get out of aviation...

All of this however you Ken can disregard because you will never buy a jet... Maybe your wife will buy you one just to stop humping her leg...

flightguy said...

Now settle down mouse, he can't help himself. Ken is dillusional at this moment. He is still hoping and denying with blind faith.

Did I tell you that most aircraft and engine OEMs have got the scoop about Eclipse at this moment? They all just shake their heads and say thankfully I don't have any money deposited! Any word on NBAA?

mouse said...

The secret IMHO is not a new market, a new plane, a new radio, or lower fuel burn... Its a new minset on the part of charter operators.

Get over the old days of limo rental where you pay for the whole day, 3 hour minimum, round-trip, overnights, wait times, etc.

The secret is charge the customer for the flying leg, period. BAnd together or get a dispatcher center and find your own backhauls just like a taxi, trucker, moving van, Etc.

You could apply this to any priced airplane and cut the price by 50-80% and up your ridership, period.

EclipseOwner387 said...

Flight Guy,

Sounds very low. Every transaction I have made on the sale side was with a business. Genereal Contractors seem very interested in low cost Jet ownership.

One of my sales was to a company located in Europe. Did you include a global count in your market analysis?

Also, I don't know if I am top 1%. I was trying to be funny. I don't know what that would require. However, I was top 1% on my ACT scores! Glory days....

;-)

flightguy said...

EO387,

How is EASA certification coming along? I would assume that the only immediate market is in the U.S. and Canada for valid sales.

flightguy said...

Mouse,

Seems like I heard that pitch for contactajet in the Walled Street Journal? Makes you wonder if Dayjet has been outsmarted at their own game. No assets what a deal.

mouse said...

EO387,

Nearly every single powerXhour program is much less expensive than pay as you go... People hate to admit it cost that much and they take the gamble they can beat the odds. The real savings comes when a surprise arises. A pair of HSI's could run you North of $300K from a bad start...

Plus the PxH bank stays with the plane or the engines so you never lose its value...

FlightCenter said...

ATM provided a link to a Flight International article on Vern's intent to develop a "get me home" technology to deal with pilot incapacitation.

Vern is quoted as saying "the technology already exists to do it, and it is merely a question of getting it approved and certificated."

At the end of the article it said "another safety system scarcely used in the sector as yet may become common as a result of Eclipse Aviation's decision to make flight operations quality assurance (FOQA), known in Europe as flight data monitoring (FDM), a part of the package that owners get with the aircraft."

I continue to be amazed that Eclipse would be setting expectations that these types of systems are just around the corner when they need to be focused on delivering the IOUs that are still outstanding.

flightguy said...

Mouse,

But owning your own jet is cool!!

:-))

flightguy said...

FC,

Vern is interested in anything that will create deposits right now. It is called survival. Pretty soon it will blast into orbit as the shuttle replacement. Ask when it will be complete?

mouse said...

Hey Ken, wake up and smell the sh-t your stepping in.. Vern is the one who said how many planes they were/are building and when they started. Your photos serve no purpose, other than something for you to look at as you make your jet sounds in the tub...

You can't quote Vern verbatim one minute and then contradict him the next. Well, actualy you can, and you do, to suit your tastes... Either way you're wrong, and mis-guided

EclipseOwner387 said...

Interesting Wealth Story:

www.nytimes.com/2007/08/05
/technology/05rich.html?ei=5089&en=006e338dd0560843
&ex=1343966400&pagewanted=print

EclipseOwner387 said...

Mouse,

I think powerXhour is the way to go as well. So fly hot and fast!!!

flightguy said...

EO387,

Is the link you provided for the wealthy are willing to take risks? The link does not connect properly.

EclipseOwner387 said...

FlightGuy,

I copied and pasted the link off this blog to test it again and it worked.

Try to google this article:

In Silicon Valley, Millionaires Who Don’t Feel Rich

Gunner said...

EO-
Here's your link
Gunner

EclipseOwner387 said...

Gunner,

Thanks. I lost my notes on how to do that! You must be in the top 1/2 percent on your ACT!

;-)

flightguy said...

EO387,

In the article you provided, would the wealth chases be laughed in Eclipse? The google boys are all flying GVs in Silicon Valley.

BD5 Believer said...

Hummer,

thanks for starting a string that had some great posts from all opinion points.

Here is my two cents worth on the VLJ and LJ market....can we all spell GE?

GE did not get in partnership with Honda just because they were bored crating the largest turbofan ever to see revenue service (GE90-115B), they joined with Honda becasue they believe there is a market in the light jet segment in the 1800 to 3000 pound thrust class. They are also exploring more airframes then just the HondaJet.

In fact, they had the inside track at Embraer for the Phenom 100, but would not / could not commit at that time to the higher thrust needed for the Phenom 300, making it an easy decision for Embraer to go with the Pratt Canada family.

I know this blog deals more in the VLJ segment, but GE is betting a nice sum on the validity of the LJ segment, and they believe that a new air taxi market will develop as part of LJ segment.

Kinda goes back to the creating a market discussion earlier. GE does not invest money on a whim....not to say they are always correct, but the track record is impressive. Something to think about.

Alternative thought: GE is partnering with Honda on the Light Jet Engine program as a building block for future collaborations between the two companies...say electric cars,or other alternative fuel vehicles? What a great way to learn how to merge two great engineering cultures.

The joke at GE a few years ago was that Jeff Immelt really wanted to be the king of "planes, trains, and automobiles!" When you are already the world market leader for gas turbines and locomotives, what is left but cars?

Remember you heard it here 1st!!

sorry, got off subject...

Hey - whose going to NBAA? I will be there all week. Since NBAA is where the big boys play, it will be intereseting to see how all the latest VLJ and personal jet news plays out when compared to the news from the traditional business jet OEM's. It is one thing to dazzle a crowd at the EAA Convention, but its a whole other world dealing with the professionals of business/corporate aviation.

airtaximan said...

folks,

can you imagine this blog without Ken... no one calling me a liar...no one pointing out FACTS that actually prove my point and not his... we'd miss the rudeness, pomposity and of course, silly stements that are WRONG.

Ken, you photo of SN11 dated a year ago, proves that it was in work a year ago? Actually, MORE than a year ago. What is your point? You couldn't photograph a part with #54 on it?

YOU SAY: "Everybody can see for themselves that they were just starting S/N 11 and S/N 12 a year ago. This crap about 50 or more planes being well along in construction for over a year is just BS."

NO KEN - you are rude, wrong and arrogant to boot. HERE'S THE WORD FROM VERN HIMSELF... multiple times...read and add up the FACTS...

(1) "Tooled and designed for high-volume, low-cost production, Eclipse plans to deliver more than 50 Eclipse 500s through the end of 2006.

http://www.eclipseaviation.com
/index.php?option=com
_newsroom&task=
viewpr&id=1086&Itemid=52

And…

(2) ALBUQUERQUE, NM — December 31, 2006 —
“Eclipse Aviation, manufacturer of the world’s first very light jet (VLJ), delivered its first customer aircraft today at its headquarters in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Ramping up to fulfill the backlog of more than 2,500 aircraft, the company already has 37 additional aircraft on its production line in various stages of assembly. Seven of these aircraft have completed final assembly and are being prepared for delivery.”
(Maybe Ken thinks these 37 planes magically appeared on the production line from their initiation the day before? afterall, it takes how long to make one of these thingys?)

TRY THIS:
(3) “On July 27, 2006 Eclipse Aviation received provisional type certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The company is expecting full type certification shortly and will begin delivering aircraft to customers very soon thereafter. There are currently 17 Eclipse 500 aircraft in various stages of production.”
(17 planes in various stages of production in July Err 2006 JULY OH-SIX... When were they STARTED Ken? - not plane 11...plane #17...)

(4)Maybe this helps...ALBUQUERQUE, NM — February 20, 2007
“Eclipse began aircraft deliveries late last year, and currently has 54 aircraft in production.”
Well well well, in Feb 2007 there were 54 planes in production… when were they STARTED Ken? They are bragging that 54 plaens are in production, many of which were already in production (17 at least) 8 months earlier in July OH-SIX... when were they started, KEN.

Mouse has told us that David Crowes plane was started (along with others in Q1 2006…

The first 50 planes were in production over a year ago.

Call someone else a liar... You are a hopless shaby billboard, still squirming to end up with something for your evaporated deposit money. You are rude and very, very often confused and mistaken.

flightguy said...

BD5,

Did you here that PWC ante'd up close to 200 million for Embraer to develop on wing? That is a chunk of change there. How much did GE honda or Williams offer?

EclipseOwner387 said...

FlightGuy,

Yeah, I am jealous of those GV guys. But keep in mind, this is families. Businesses are legal entities with net worth. Some of these businesses are buying these small jets.

FYI: I thought the demographics for the top 1% and 1/2% family net worths seemed lower than I would have thought.

EO

rcflyer said...

bd5 believer,

The GE-Honda HF120 engine has already scored a second design win (the first being the Hondajet, of course): The Spectrum Freedom S-40 mid-size bizjet.

R.C.

flightguy said...

EO387,

It's all relative. The more you make, the more the government takes.

flightguy said...

How much did GEHonda give Spectrum for the scariest plane known to man? Can you say crash waiting to happen. It's another technology push special.

BD5 Believer said...

flightguy,

That number does not surprise me, but a I was a few departments over at the time, so I do not know an exact number, however particpating in the cert cost for the a/c is nothing new, and something always negotiated between teh OEM's. You do not want to know what it cost GE to be sole source on the final 777 models with the GE90-115b!!

What I do remember was cert participation was not as big an issue as committing engines to both the 100 and 300. The irony now, is that GE/Honda has committed to the higher thrust ranges.

RCflyer - you are correct!! And that one surprised me!

flightguy said...

Not to digress too much from Eclipse's woes, but how is the GE/Honda engine doing?

BD5 Believer said...

flightguy,

our last post crossed each other...I am with you...many of us have had a "what are they thinking moment' on that one.

My understanding is no particpation, very speculative venture...which is not a normal GE Aircraft trait.

they are still talking to several other more traditional OEM's though.

You have to ask yourself, what does Dassualt think of the LJ market, what about Hawker Beech? Th Premier is a great aircraft, but fits a very small niche....now that they are out from under Raytheon, do they really beleive the King Air C90 GTS can fill the void?

flightguy said...

How does GE/Honda see itself competing with PWC and Williams already in the market?

BD5 Believer said...

Flightguy,

My understanding is that it is hitting all of its developmental / cert milestones, and that the GE cert team is very impressed with the Honda technology. But I am a few months out of date.

Let me make a few calls in the morning, plus I will be seeing all of my old GE friends next week at NBAA.

flightguy said...

I would be interested in hearing the how the engine and aircraft are doing. The HondaJet may be a stellar seller unlike the Eclipse. Sorry, I had to segway back to Eclipse.

Thanks,

Bassmaster said...

Who shot 20yr?! No responses. Anywho on a quick-turn at KBCT got a good gander at the craft. First thought...a C-210 with turbine power! No...not the RR/AE turboshaft eagle mod (Although in flying in one the 2K/min 190kt gps and beta after TD was fun). The simplicity is redicoulous. Although apparent simplicity can be deceptive we just don't see where various troubled bits of kit can't be reconciled. If time wasn't a factor it would have been super to speak with the pilot. Maybe next time. There were several Dayjet craft in the distance with distinctive signage, but not enough time to get there. Does Dayjet keep planes at KBCT? I'm under asumption that they're North FL...(Gainsville)?

flightguy said...

Wasn't 20 year going public?

BD5 Believer said...

How does GE/Honda see itself competing with PWC and Williams already in the market?

That is a great question, and the answer comes down to fuel efficiency and maintenance cost, and you will see a lot of "green" advertising.

There is no doubt in this market segment, PWC is the gold standard, and Williams still gets mixed marks for overall operating cost and support.

GE/Honda is offering the backing of the oldest and largest gas turbine manufacturer with the brand recognition and innovation of Honda. GE looked long and hard at starting their own clean sheet of paper engine, but once they looked at Honda's demonstrator, they were sold on its technology.

As a shareholder though, I wonder if they joined the party to late.

flightguy said...

Rumor had it that GE was looking to acquire Williams. They told them to go stepping. Is that true?

BD5 Believer said...

one final note...the google boys have a 767....

time to go to bed and dream about getting the rest of my BD5 powerplant kit....I understand it is due to deliver on Tuesday...same as the eclipse IOU's.

BD5 Believer said...

not sure about the williams story, that pops up every now and then.

what sucks is that GE had a good line on Allison prior to Rolls buying them...woudl haev been a great product fit.

interested eclipse follower said...

airtaximan said...

"The first 50 planes were in production over a year ago."


you are arguing against yourself idiot. How about SOME DATA not BULLSHIT:

14 MONTHS AGO THEY HAD 17 IN PRODUCTION NOT 50+

“On July 27, 2006 Eclipse Aviation received provisional type certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
There are currently 17 Eclipse 500 aircraft in various stages of production.”

THIS IS UNDER 9 MONTHS AGO NOT OVER 12:

ALBUQUERQUE, NM — December 31, 2006 —

“Eclipse Aviation... already has 37 additional aircraft on its production line in various stages of assembly.

THIS IS 7 MONTHS AGO NOT 12:

ALBUQUERQUE, NM — February 20, 2007
“Eclipse began aircraft deliveries late last year, and currently has 54 aircraft in production.”


(They are about to deliver #50, an aircraft that started on the line just over 7 months ago.)

planet-ex said...

flightguy said...
How does GE/Honda see itself competing with PWC and Williams already in the market?


Well...GE did buy Walter Engines in August.

mouse said...

A bit of Honda HF118 trivia.. The Honda turbine engine first ran in 1987, 20 years ago. It has been operational in amazing secrecy up until the last 2-3 years. They are very far along, and asked GE to help them certify and support in the US market. The same stratgy as the HondaJet did with Piper.

The HondaJet was so secret to the Honda company that very few knew of it's existance.

The wing was tested in the Honda Automotive wind tunnels to prove its design under amazing security as well to protect the secret.

The wind tunnel was only used on the midnight shift, and usually the weekends. The wing was tested in 3' sections, never in its entirety, again to protect its secrecy.

The wind tunnel engineers were told they were testing Formula 1 race wings, and in the automotive circles nothing is more protected or secretive than racing...

Very shrewd these new aviation pioneers from the East... And very nice people to work with, although their perfection is at times a real pain! LOL!

The GE people are not quite as sharp as they'd like to think they are.. In a meeting I had with them they claimed they were moving slowly because the small engine market and VLJ's in particuliar were new to them... I had to remind them about their very own CJ610 series engine which started the whole small plane/private jet concept years ago.. The Lear Jet, Jet Commander, Falcon 20 (CF700 - same engine with a fan on the back side), Etc. Short memory, long history...

planet-ex said...

Hey - whose going to NBAA? I will be there all week. Since NBAA is where the big boys play, it will be intereseting to see how all the latest VLJ and personal jet news plays out when compared to the news from the traditional business jet OEM's. It is one thing to dazzle a crowd at the EAA Convention, but its a whole other world dealing with the professionals of business/corporate aviation.

As for the big boys, I'm pretty sure that Gulfstream will announce two new models - one mid-cabin (i.e., IAI built) and one large cabin (the fat Gulfstream).

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rcflyer said...

niner zulu,

I can't speak for others, but I'll definitely be paying cash for my E500. I'm one of those weird guys who doesn't believe in borrowing money.

We'll see on the insurance cost, but anecdotal evidence is showing premiums at considerably less than the $35-45k you mentioned.

If fuel does reach $6/gal (at non-Signature FBO's) then all flying will be proportionately more expensive, not just VLJ's.

R.C.

WhyTech said...

9Z said:

"I find that a lot of the things I think I wanted in the past are looking more like a liability than an asset."

Great insight. You can get to the point where your "stuff" owns you!

WT

airtaximan said...

interested eclipse follower,

I guess you do not understand how "on its production line" and "various stages of assembly RELATE to "aircraft that were started".

Sorry Charlie, you, Ken and Vern cannot have it both ways - the planes being delivered today have taken a year or more to produce.

You ciste my reference of PR from e-clips:
“Eclipse Aviation... already has 37 additional aircraft on its production line in various stages of assembly."

Like I said, if you think these 37 planes were STARTED at the time they were reported to already be in ASSEMBLY, look in the mirror before you call someone an idiot.

Its too bad you qucikly call someone here an idiot, ASK FOR DATA, and refer to Press Releases from E-clips as BS.

Take NOTE: There's a reason after a few months of reporting on how many planes were in work... e-clips stopped reporting this. Its simple - its all bad regarding how long its taken to actually manufacture these planes.

Wake up, don't be rude, read, and use your head. Planes on the assembly line were started before they make it to the assembly line.

Anyone want to take a stab at how long before?

Reporeted here: David Crowe's plane was started in Q1 or Q2 2006 and his was not the only plane started then... thats almost 1.5 years ago.

PS do the math - if they had 50 planes started last year... how many should be in work now...with the ramp up...etc... why are they just mentioning aircraft number 71 or so beginning?

Like I said, you won't find data here, unless you want to believe Verns own PR... and that's what you are using (misunderstanding and misinterpreting) to make a point. Unfortunately, you are making MY point.

Planes on the assembly line were started months and months before they make it to assembly.

Around 1,000 man-years to build 40 planes is a problem.

PS. want to know when every one of these planes will be finished? I guess you forgot nonw of the delivered planes are finished... either.

Measure with micrometer, cut with chain saw. Amazing.

ExEclipser said...

7 EA50's In The Air!

Wow, Kimo-Wasabi

Ken Meyer said...

That's right...

Eight Eclipse Aircraft flying today

That's not counting ones blocked.

And it fits in with this morning's report suggesting a rosier outlook for VLJs than previously forecaste:

A European company that has studied the emerging very light jet market says it's painting a rosier outlook for the sector than it has in the past but there are more caveats than a law library in his assessment. Phillip Butterworth-Hayes, of PMI Media, told AVweb Sunday in a podcast interview to be released on Friday that interest in VLJs seems to be sustained and new market possibilities are opening up but (and there are several of them) the next 12 months will likely be the harbinger of things to come, especially in the air taxi business." A lot will depend on just how robust the aircraft are," Butterworth-Hayes, author of the report, said. He said they're going to be called upon to fly far more hours in more rugged conditions than business jets are normally flown and many are far less expensive than the low-end business jets.

Ken

EclipseOwner387 said...

Hey Mirage owners,

I am thinking about buying a Mirage to have as my second plane and sell my Cirrus. If you are interested in selling let me know.

dcrum@yahoo.com

EclipseOwner387 said...

N168TT is flying and it is an AeroMod plane. SN42.

Non-stop ABQ to OSH.

989.7 NM using the tailwind but still nice.

airtaximan said...

Ken,

did you see PMI's previous forecast?

How you can say 7 planes flying somehow fits the report is pretty amazing. Perhaps you should include all the MUstang's flying around, too...it would help make your argument!

Probably NOT help your case for e-clips, though.

AeroObserver said...

I too will be at NBAA for the whole week. Is anyone organizing an Eclipse critic get-together?

ExEclipser said...

EO387: Up to 406 Kts Ground now!

Ken Meyer said...

EO387 wrote,

"N168TT is flying and it is an AeroMod plane. SN42.

Non-stop ABQ to OSH.

989.7 NM using the tailwind but still nice."


They passed pretty close to DDC not long after the upper air sounding was taken: winds 249 @ 44 kts, temp -51 (ISA + 6).

Factor those winds in and the plane was getting a TAS just over 350 KTAS (which is what they filed). At ISA +6, that's better than book speeds for the aeromod Eclipse at FL 370 :)

Ken

BD5 Believer said...

Mouse,

something to remember, the CJ610 program was a Lynn (Boston) based program, not Evendale(Cincinnati), and what CJ610 product support that is left today is Lynn based and tied in with the J85 team. Evendale is driving these programs now.

The current crop of managers at GE were still in diapers when the CJ610 was in its glory. No disrespect intended, but that was 40 years ago. Of course it is new to them now. I would not underestimate them, even if they were taking a measured approach.

Meanwhile it is fair to be critical of their CF34 support for the Challenger. They are still trying to regain their support identity with it.

Plus there remains strong internal debate within GE about joining the new class of 10,000 lb engines. The new cycle deck developed from the GENX program is opening up a lot of new technology and thought.

The real question for the last 15 years was did GE really want to be a player and leader in the Biz Av market again. We can look at their actions in the past 4 years and make our own conclusions.

Ken Meyer said...

Nice feature story on DayJet on the Today Show this morning.

DayJet Story

(you have to watch the ad first)

Ken

Copernicus said...

The point under discussion is (or should be) the rate at which aircraft are currently moving down the line. Taking serial numbers from a year ago and extrapolating a rate is valid only if one believes that the AVERAGE rate for the last year is also the CURRENT rate this month. Since Eclipse claims to be accelerating, one should look at a short history (say the last month) rather than a long history. The claim is that a plot of the serial number of the airplane at the beginning of the line vs. date will show an exponential curve of some type, not a straight line. It will become a straight line only when the rate reaches a desired steady rate like 45 or 60 per month. That is the claim.

Observation at the factory showed serial number 70 at the beginning of the line on August 23, 2007 and serial number 81 at the beginning on September 11. So that is a rate of airplanes starting down the line of 18 per calendar month. This is the best empirical evidence available.

The elapsed time between number 11 and 12 or between 30 and 40 or some other historical interval is interesting (and will doubtlessly show a broken promise) but now irrelevant. Eclipse airplanes are now starting down the line at a rate of 216 per year. One can conjecture about when, if, or how quickly this rate may increase but please take this as the established rate as of today.

Stan Blankenship said...

This morning's Today's Show had a nice segment on DayJet.

Link to MSNBC, look for Wednesday's videos and click on "Book a Flight..."

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bill e. goat said...

"The market yet to be CREATED, gentleman, is the traveling business owners, professional practices and public (who can afford it)..."

In the nothing-new-under-the-sun catagory, I respectfully submit the Bonanza and C-3xx. Both very nice airplanes, arguably the performance/price champions of their day. Neither sold in "revolutionary" volumes though.
------------------------
The E-500 might offer "revolutionary" value. But the fact the E-500 offers a lot more for your money, DOESN'T mean there are a lot more people with the money to buy one.

Case in point, perhaps the Baron was the former reigning champ at the Eclipse buy-in point. What's the produciton #'s? Dozens, not hundreds...I'm not sure even several times the value is going to creat anywhere near linear correspondence in demand.
--------------------------
None of the production number controversy or Eclipse business model or failed hype alters the fact the E-500 is a nice plane though (with some "growing pains" for a year or two, not untypical for a new model).

(I agree the business model, prod#'s, etc. do have pertinence on aftermarket support and resale value though).
-------------------------
I think if we had never heard of the E-500, and someone yanked it out of a bag, and said it cost $1.8M, we'd all be going "WOW"!

I think Eclipse just needs to put a Vern in the bag...

EclipseOwner387 said...

9Z,

You act like FIKI is something unattainable. Eclipse is using "dino" rubber boots. It should get done unless Eclipse folds.

Bill E. Goat,

How can you guys continue to compare the Bonanza and Cessna 3xx to a twin jet?? Even if they were comparable, times have changed. A lot of disposable income/cash with low inflation. A time warp has occurred with high speed information flow (internet, computers, fedex, etc.) accelerating the need to act more quickly in business. September 11th and Terror. Commercial aviation a mess.

It is a whole new ball game and a promised Jet with promised Jet/commercial safety has a lot of appeal. Will it make anyone money?

I don't know.

But the demand is growing and stories like the one on the Today Show will foster more interest.

Copernicus said...

The point under discussion is (or should be) the rate at which aircraft are currently moving down the line. Taking serial numbers from a year ago and extrapolating a rate is valid only if one believes that the AVERAGE rate for the last year is also the CURRENT rate this month. Since Eclipse claims to be accelerating, one should look at a short history (say the last month) rather than a long history. The claim is that a plot of the serial number of the airplane at the beginning of the line vs. date will show an exponential curve of some type, not a straight line. It will become a straight line only when the rate reaches a desired steady rate like 45 or 60 per month. That is the claim.

Observation at the factory showed serial number 70 at the beginning of the line on August 23, 2007 and serial number 81 at the beginning on September 11. So that is a rate of airplanes starting down the line of 18 per calendar month. This is the best empirical evidence available.

The elapsed time between number 11 and 12 or between 30 and 40 or some other historical interval is interesting (and will doubtlessly show a broken promise) but now irrelevant. Eclipse airplanes are now starting down the line at a rate of 216 per year. One can conjecture about when, if, or how quickly this rate may increase but please take this as the established rate as of today.

cherokee driver said...

copernicus

There is a video on youtube where Vern states that s/n 71 is at the beginning of the production line. The video was made 8-13-07. If s/n 81 is at the beginning on 9-11-07 they are closer to 10 per month.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=nynZ3mIzkEM

Niner Zulu said...

E0387,

I didn't say, act, or even hint, that FIKI is unobtainable. If anything, it is Eclipse that continues to make FIKI a low priority. Ice doesn't wait around for Eclipse. An IOU won't get you down through an overcast layer filled with ice.

Eclipse is delivering "putters" with jet engines. Like a Cessna 140 - something to be kept around your home strip where you know the weather is going to be good and used to punch holes in the sky. To try to use this aircraft now for cross country travel in any type of IMC is, in my opinion, insane.

AlexA said...

9Z,

If you are going to NBAA I would suggest you spend sometime at Diamond and ask for an update on the new ducts. High angle of attack airflow problems, water ingestion and probably the most troublesome is icing accumulation in the ducts.

mirage00 said...

There is a video on youtube where Vern states that s/n 71 is at the beginning of the production line. The video was made 8-13-07. If s/n 81 is at the beginning on 9-11-07 they are closer to 10 per month.

Well we know that the production line was in transition the last week of August in order to accommodate dual line production. So that needs to be considered.

More and more birds in the air every day. As Ken recently commented, "this train has left the station"


I remain amused

double 00

Copernicus said...

Cherokee Driver:

The same person saw 81 on 9/11 at the same place as 70 was seen on 8/23. Maybe Vern was looking at the sheets of aluminum out back, I don't know or maybe my reporter was looking one or two steps down the line on 8/23 and 9/11 but I believe the dates and positions of the two airplanes-to-be were compared on an "even steven" basis. Time will tell when we see the 3Q delivery numbers and the 4Q delivery numbers as reported to GAMA. The number of GAMA deliveries in 2Q was 17 (5/mo); 3Q is likely to be around 36 (12/mo) and 4Q is ?? If starting at a rate of 18/month presently one would think at least 54.

Black Tulip said...

Niner Zulu said,

“Ice doesn't wait around for Eclipse.”

Unless the sky is all blue overhead, forecast icing will probably accompany a climb to the flight levels. Ice may or may not accumulate but legal operation requires known ice approval. The training wheels will not be removed from the Eclipse until approval is received. Even in Florida it is common to see ice on short hops between cities in the winter.

Black Tulip

interested eclipse follower said...

8 Eclipse 500's flying simultaneously (not including the many that are blocked including ell of Eclipse's flights) puts 20% of the fleet in the air at once. Pretty rarefied air, compare that to the number of these biz jets and turboprops flying midday (now) at primetime:

9 ASTR IAI Gulfstream G100
9 BE30 Beechcraft Super King Air 300
9 GLEX Bombardier Global Express
9 PRM1 Raytheon Premier 1
7 C25A Cessna Citation CJ2
6 G150 IAI Gulfstream G150
6 LJ25 Learjet 25
6 TBM7 Socata TBM-700
5 BE90 Beechcraft King Air 90
5 LJ40 Learjet 40
4 BE9T Beechcraft King Air F90
4 LJ55 Learjet 55
3 GLF2 Gulfstream 2
3 GLF3 Gulfstream 3
2 H25C Raytheon Hawker 1000
2 LJ24 Learjet 24
2 LR35 Learjet 35
1 C510 Cessna Citation Mustang
1 HRZN Raytheon Hawker Horizon

as mirage00 would say,
"Amusing?"

Ken Meyer said...

niner zulu wrote,

"It is Eclipse that continues to make FIKI a low priority."

I think that's inaccurate. I know for a fact they've been doing FIKI testing using ice forms recently. The still need natural icing to complete the testing series.

Ken

airtaximan said...

copernicus,

"So that is a rate of airplanes starting down the line of 18 per calendar month. This is the best empirical evidence available."

Do you believe this is the first time there have been 18 planes started down the lne in around a month?

In a stable mature company, I'd probably agree this could be a trend.

At e-clips, I believe this is nothing more than the same thing they did a year or so ago, when they had a bunch of planes starting down the line...

In line with the fits and starts they have expereinced which has led to missing all production projections over and over by unbelieveable margins.

They need to make the case (AGAIN) for how many planes they will produce...and as we have seen over and over again, Vern will say something like "there are currently XX planes in production" or provide some anaysis that equates to your logic about "at the current rate... we're projected to deliver XXX planes in the next XXX days or XX months..."

FWIW, Its just to get more deposits and investors.

WhyTech said...

EO387 said:

"Eclipse is using "dino" rubber boots. It should get done unless Eclipse folds."

There is a whole lot more to FIKI cert than just installing the boots. It typically takes quite a bit of test flying and tweaking to meet the requirements. If E-clips already has the development work complete, then it will be relatively easy. If not, it could take quite awhile. Pilatus spent about 2 years getting FIKI where thay wanted it to be, partly because it was difficult to find the extreme natural icg conditions they wanted to prove the system. This seems to be as much art as science.

WT

EclipseOwner387 said...

WT,

You missed my point. If you think I was saying all we need is rubber boots and we are done then you must really have a low opinion of my intelligence.

Thanks.

WhyTech said...

EO387 said:

"you must really have a low opinion of my intelligence."

I dont have any opinion regarding your intelligence. However, it is my opinion that your skin is pretty thin. You seem to take offense at many posts where none was intended.

WT

jet_fumes said...

AlexA, your contribution to this blog regarding the d-jet is not only entirely false (I know this for a fact) but downright irritating because you keep coming back with it.

Shane Price said...

Coperncius,

Did you take the trouble to watch Dan Bricklins' video?

Listen (carefully) to The Great Raburn in the segment shot in the assembley hall.

He goes out of his way to point to the three part assemblies in the foreground and names them by serial number, with SN 51 about to be loaded on the 'NASCAR transporter' to go to wing mate.

Then, when Dan counts the other aircraft that are visible (up to '8 or 10') Vern 'corrects' him and states that Serial Number 71 'started over there this morning'.

That video was shot on the 13th of August.

Now, either your believe Vern (hint, to be a true believer, you must believe everything he says) or your own sources.

I prefer Dan myself. It looked to me (and Dan) like the starting assembly in that hall on the 13th was in or about SN 62.

Dan was there in person. With a video camera that panned across the hall and a microphone to record Vern saying something that did not match the evidence.

I was not there. Neither were you. All we can do is look, listen and make a judgement.

I have....

Shane

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shane Price said...

Ken,

What is the priority at Eclipse right now?

You seem well informed on everything else, perhaps you can tell us.

Shane

AlexA said...

9Z said “The difference between Eclipse and Diamond is that Diamond isn't trying to get me to accept a jet with IOU's.” Really 9Z? Have you read your agreement?

Here is a cut and paste from the deposit agreement
“-Equipped for know ice certification – actual certification for know ice may follow post-delivery”

You guys are great at double standards.

AlexA said...

Jetfumes said ”…d-jet is not only entirely false (I know this for a fact)..” Nice try Jetfumes, my info on the D-jet has been on the money. Even Stan the biased man confirmed Diamond is having water ingestion problems.

Any idea why the intake ducts were redesigned on SN2?

ExEclipser said...

Another James Fallow Update

Looks like he hit the nail on the head with who would be using DayJet. If you don't wanna click the link, the jist is that during the Legistlative session, flights to and from THL get quite booked. Legislators are not likely to use the service (though I would say Why Not?), but the lobbyists are most likely to fill up DayJet's seats.

ExEclipser said...

Another excellent example of exactly what the EA500 is used for.

North American Jet Charter flew from Chicago Exectutive this morning to Lansing Municipal to pick up a passenger.

All times in EDT for clarity.

Passenger departed KIGQ at 8:36 and arrived at Foothills Regional in North Carolina at 10:10 - about a 1 1/2 hour ride. Best GS at altitude was 340 kts.

Passenger departed MRN after being in town for 5 hours at 15:32. Approximately 2 hours later, he's due to land back at his home base in Lansing, IL at 17:30.

Passenger left his home base, spent 5 hours at a location 441NM away, and returned home with plenty of daylight left.

To drive that would have been 11+ hours each way. To fly non-stop commercial would have required a 6:32 AM flight out of OHare (so easy to get in and out of), 3 or 10 hours at site, with a return at 1:30 or 8:47 PM.

The only last real comparison is what the EA500 charter cost over other chaters?

Oh, and I about forgot. The runway lengths at Lansing are 3395 and 4002. Not to say that most other small jets can't get in and out, but if 18/36 was closed, only the EA500, Mustang, CJ1 and CJ3 could make it per the book. The last three barely on an ISA day. The EA500 with 1000' to spare. Next closest is the Mustang with only 200' to spare.

Even on the "Big" runway, everything bigger than the Mustang would have less than 900' of wiggle room (again on an ISA day).

I'm sure that this customer in Lansing is thankful for the EA500.

Bravo, NAJC!

ExEclipser said...

Oh, and did I mention that the plane that can do this flight is available right now? You may have to wait 2 years from the manufacturer, but speculators are standing buy (sic) to accept your offer. Even at $2 Mil, this plane is a steal!

sparky said...

Ex-E said

"Oh, and I about forgot. The runway lengths at Lansing are 3395 and 4002. Not to say that most other small jets can't get in and out, but if 18/36 was closed, only the EA500, Mustang, CJ1 and CJ3 could make it per the book. The last three barely on an ISA day. The EA500 with 1000' to spare. Next closest is the Mustang with only 200' to spare."

Is this the BFL rated eclipse?

ExEclipser said...

OH MY GOODNESS. My bad. Closest airport is Charlotte, not Greensboro.

SO this scenario isn't quite as dramatic. Closest comparison would be to leave Lansing at 6 AM to get to OHare by 7 AM for an 8:45 Departure. Flight arrives at 10:30, followed by a 1.5 hour drive, stay on location for 5 hours, drive 1.5 hours back to Charlotte, depart at 8:20 and be back to Ohare at 10:30 PM. Finally after an hour commute back to Lansing, you get home at 11:30 PM (again, all times calibrated to EDT for clarity).

An 18 hour day compared to a 9 hour day.

Cool.

ExEclipser said...

Another neat thing is that the pilot only had just over a 10-hour day.

Don't know what you mean by BFL, but this is a pre-aeromod jet.

Black Tulip said...

Execlipser said,

“I'm sure that this customer in Lansing is thankful for the EA500.”

We are all thankful for the EA500. Without it we would be searching for something more productive to do at the computer keyboard.

One thesis remains untested. Why would the Eclipse be much less expensive to operate that the three Cessna jets you mentioned? Yes, I understand the engines are smaller and burn less fuel. But otherwise the aircraft have many of the same systems. I would expect similar maintenance reserves, more or less. (Let’s withhold the question of how well the avionics are going to work.)

The estimated direct operating cost comparison for the Eclipse and Mustang in the B&CA Purchase Planning Handbook reflects this thinking. Let us set aside any supposed low cost ‘power by the hour’ programs offered by the manufacturer until the aircraft develops a track record. Sooner or later, introductory offers have to adjust to reality.

This is not a question for second decimal place analysis…just intuition. The Eclipse has a gross weight 30% less than the Mustang. Would you expect it to cost 30% less to operate and maintain. I wouldn’t expect the cost to scale down that much.

If this is the case, what are the real prospects for a revolution in the air taxi industry?

Black Tulip

sparky said...

BFL=Balanced Field Length

the length of runway you need to clear a 35' obstruction with an engine faliure at V1. Most transport category aircraft's takeoff distance are rated this way.

This wasn't the case with eclipse. When asked about it, they said they would be addressing this issue later.

That's why the eclipse had 1000' of spare runway and the mustang only had 200'.

sparky said...

Left out the part about also coming to a stop by applying maximum braking pressure. It usually comes out to about the same distance....If you have anti-lock brakes. if not......

WhyTech said...

exe said:

"Don't know what you mean by BFL,"

"Balanced field length is the distance required to accelerate to V1, abort the takeoff and stop. Or, if takeoff is continued with an engine failure the airplane will achieve a height of 35ft in the same distance. If the runway is at least that long it meets balanced field length criteria."

Be sure you are comparing apples and apples in this instance.

WT

jet_fumes said...

Alexa said:

"Nice try Jetfumes, my info on the D-jet has been on the money."

Yeah sure. Give me just one example. Just one. I've challenged you to do this a couple of weeks ago and you have not been able to back up any of your claims.

"Even Stan the biased man confirmed Diamond is having water ingestion problems."

As I pointed out earlier, the d-jet has yet to be tested with a chined nose wheel. They work very well on other jets. Until then, any consideration about "problems" is utter balloney.

"Any idea why the intake ducts were redesigned on SN2?"

I suppose you are talking about the inlets since the ducts are very similar. The series production inlets have been retrofitted on the POC after the sixth flight and they work just fine thank you. The original inlet was some kind of an experiment that didn't work out, but as you obviously don't have a clue about, has nothing to do with high AoA. A moot point anyway.

Again Alexa, everything you have told so far on this blog about the d-jet is false and is not even based on rumors.

interested eclipse follower said...

Funny how you guys grab anything you can about Eclipse and slam it, rarely giving them an inch. But the moment someone mentions even a POTENTIAL problem about another bird (DiamondJet, Mustang) you all come to their defense. DJet, Mustang, Others are all PERFECT. I'm guessing you may realize it doesn't look balanced and makes people wonder about MOTIVE. Which undermines how serious people that get this as the second google result for Eclipse Aviation take your blog. MOTIVE, hmmmm, Gunner got in some dispute with Eclipse on his deposit, and just like his other lawsuits and shooting his way out of his Mercedes, is the aggressor. Stan's company got in a pissing match with Vern, this is his payback. Some poster got fired from Eclipse. Looks like a balanced crew, others???

cj3driver said...

EXE said;

“… Another excellent example of exactly what the EA500 is used for...North American Jet Charter flew from Chicago Exectutive this morning to Lansing Municipal to pick up a passenger … The only last real comparison is what the EA500 charter cost over other charters? …”

I plugged in the numbers at North American’s rate of $1,350.00 per hour and came up with $6,675.75 for this trip. This is just a traditional charter. Hardly revolutionary, just a lower charter rate for a smaller plane.

BTW – aircharterguide.com shows Chicago Business Air Charter out of Lansing, has a Citation II based at KIGO, $1,650 per hour. This same trip, KIGQ to KMRN could have been booked thru them a Citation II and would have cost about $6,000.00 without a positioning fee.

If the Citation II was based at PWC, the price would have been about $1,000 more than the Eclipse. I wouldn’t be surprised if the trip in question, was made for one of Chicago Business’s customers as a “fill in” or brokered charter.

In short … this is another excellent example of exactly what traditional charter is used for … EA50 or not.

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ken Meyer said...

sparky wrote,

"BFL=Balanced Field Length...Most transport category aircraft's takeoff distance are rated this way.
This wasn't the case with eclipse. When asked about it, they said they would be addressing this issue later."


I don't think it is an issue per se. It's different rules applied to different types of aircraft.

The Eclipse AFM reports takeoff distance over a 50' obstacle in accordance with FAR Part 23 requirements.

The Mustang is also certified to FAR Part 23, but Cessna decided they wanted to use the Commuter rules. So, they report the runway length as the longest of: 1)115% of the takeoff distance over a 35' obstacle, 2) engine-out accelerate/go distance or 3) accelerate/stop distance in accordance with the FAR 23 commuter rules.

If you have a beef with the required runway distance reporting, it's a beef with the FAA, not Eclipse.

Ken

Niner Zulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Step right up ladies and gentlemen, based on a single data point, the Faithful proclaim that the train has left the station.

The only remaining question is who exactly is being railroaded.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Ken is, for once, completely correct IMNSHO, Cessna elected to use the more stringent (and correct) set of regulations, and Eclipse selected the easy way out.

Remember folks, several of the FAR's governing aircraft design and certification are essentially self-policing and are based on an expectation of a reasonable amount of responsibility, experience and safety-consciousness from the applicant.

It is my opinion that the record is quite clear where Cessna and Eclipse rate in relationship to this.

WhyTech said...

Copernicus said:

"Bottom line: for all the problems and broken promises and for all the uncertainties, it is still worth it for me to "hang in there."

Wow! Talk about faithful! How long you going to hang in there? Another 10 years?

WT

airtaximan said...

ief,

nice caps.

any question posed here, any analysis and any scrutiny of e-clips aviation and e-500 posed on the other OEMs is dealt with fairly and honest;y by the critics. NOT SO by the faithful.

Its part of religion, really. Religious fanatics can always determne that "Mine god is better than yours" if you are blind.

You are.
..plus, you are rude.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion, and the facts get in the way regarding e-clips vs. Diamond, Mustang et als.

None of them are air taxi planes, in the sense that they accomplish the same mission as a prop, for more money. NONE. HOW unbiased is THAT.

PS. trying to make facts fit an argument, or trying to find a market for a plane when there are not enough Ken's around (this WAS the intial market for 3 years) redults in the comparison for the airlines to e-clips NAjets flight today posted by one of the Die-hards.

Compared to a jet charter of a proven plane from Cessna - there's NO ADVANTAGE.

Sorry ief, despite the BOLD font, ...you continue to make very little sense.

Neither do most religions. Just say "I love e-clips... its blind faith" that'll do it.

Stan Blankenship said...

alexa,

For the record, an informed source told me there had never been a compressor stall on the D-Jet as you had alleged and he confirmed his position the second time you made the allegation.

I have never asked this source nor has he volunteered information on water ingestion. I did however, caution gunner before he paced his deposits that this may very well be a concern/problem for D-Jet.

D-Jet has a news conference scheduled next week at the NBAA Convention in Atlanta. This subject is a fair question to bring up.

Black Tulip said...

The Faithful have repeatedly mentioned that the train has left the station. It’s picking up speed and it’s unstoppable. The nineteenth century was celebrated as the Age of Steam. The analogy is badly outdated.

On the other hand, if Shane Price can bring high speed rail to the New World, we will applaud him.

Black Tulip

sparky said...

ken,

No beef, just "keeping it real".

I just pointed out that Cessna was certified to a more stringent level than the eclipse.

The comparison was made that the eclipse had 1000' of runway left over while the Mustang had 200' it might had led to the wrong conclusion that the eclipse out-performs the mustang in this regard when that isn't the case.

After all, if we're going to calculate fuel burn to the third decimal point.....

airtaximan said...

Mouse,

you made some very smart comments about new air taxi models and how the charter companies have a long way to go adjusting... eventhough we concentrate here on e-clisp, here are some members of what is being called an air taxi associateion..

especially check out JumpJet... cool model - cheap, too.

http://www.atxa.com/

many diferent types, business models and plans... even some using e-clips!

Stan Blankenship said...

ief,

Regarding your statement - "Stan's company got in a pissing match with Vern, this is his payback." could not be more wrong.

We have never done any work for Eclipse...have never even submitted a bid for work directly with Eclipse.

Several years ago (2002?) we provided tooling to an Eclipse supplier in Denton, TX. Last year at this time I refused to even consider supporting a local company that was being solicited for sheet metal parts from Eclipse.

Gunner said...

NinerZ-
For the record, the Christian name is Alejandro.


Stan-
Funny how you mentioned the D-Jet water ingestion concern in a an email, a Critic (me) volunteered that info here, and The Faithful accuse US of using double-standards.

Nobody (but The Faithful) believes that Diamond was ignorant of the challenge when they designed the jet this way; or that they are having any real problems with the design.

But, Oh My, they changed the inlets from Proto I to Proto II. Gee, shouldn't the second one be a carbon copy of the first. Talk about "hateful" stuff? This is silly.
Gunner

AlexA said...

9Z,

Suggest you go back to my first post. You will find no hidden agenda. IIRC I stated I was a position holder, had concerns, flew out to ABQ, decided the risk was minimal, plopped down $600K. Simple. Based on the number of aircraft out the door, reports of performance and reliability, looks like a good decision.

AlexA said...

Gunner,

Great time to go back and re-read your posts. You swore up and down that I did not know Fred Ahles. Well, well wrong again Cinderella.

AlexA said...

Stan I gave credit to you instead of Flightguy

“FYI, AlexA I was going to give you KUDOs for stumbling upon the DJET results from the aircraft water ingestion test -unknowingly. I made some phone calls and asked the right questions. They are looking at a new gear to move the relative inlet position. That's a long way from compressor stalls and engine problems. This happens to many aircraft mfgrs for the first go.”

airtaximan said...

Alex:

at least I now understand your lopsidded posts and motivation, here. Position holders, hold a position which requires other to pony up deposits and progress payments - 'cause your is all gone!

Defensiveness, silly comments, personal attacks and misinformation noted, and understaood -'nuff said about you.

What position number are you? We can anticipate a nicer, friendlier, more polite and more accurate environment when the company goes TU or when you get yu plane. I HOPE for your sake and ours, that you have an early position!

PS. trade to the Coldwell position swap at no cost... you may get an unfinished plane with IOUs and GNs to come at some future point but this will..
1- shut you sorry ass up here
2- get you SOMETHING for you deposit and progress payment money

how ofetn in life do we get a win-win? Take the chance... go for it!

PS. your stupid comments about the d-jet are uncalled for and wrong. I have it on good authority that JetFumes is extremely credile and knows more about all the VLJ development programs already than you could ever wish to learn. That is, if you could open you eyes and ears, which apparently is NOT the case.

Take the Coldwell position at cost and run!!!

airtaximan said...

Oh my G0D,

"Dayjet Gives Global Warming the Finger"


As the planet begins to whistle like a kettle on the boil, most of us are at least making a passing effort at stopping our carbon footstep being the one that finally sinks the planet. However, one firm in the US is intent on make a Yeti size carbon footprint, by offering a flying taxi service. Where might this service be, the remote wilds of Maine, or a string of isolated islands surrounding Hawaii? No, Florida.

Dayjet is offering customers an on-demand, per seat service to allow executive customers the advantage of not being ‘at the mercy of commercial scheduling’. The company's jets can carry between 1 and 3 people, how very spacious, prices will be set on an individual basis and eco-friendless passengers can roll up to the airport anytime.

What is truly galling about this, is that John and Jane Smiths are being told by everyone, from the government to their dentist, to drop their once yearly, cattle class holiday flight in order to save the environment. Meanwhile, Mr and Mrs Moneybags are presumably flying in the lap of luxury, while dumping bags of burning coal onto dolphin reserves below.

Visit Dayjet and register your disapproval.

There are more like this coming out... this is really BAD.

airtaximan said...

from the Daily Green...

"Noticably missing from the website is any reference to the carbon footprint of taking these planes versus taking commercial jetliners, an issue that is likely to be raised within the context of global warming, high energy prices, etc."

AlexA said...

ATM said “PS. your stupid comments about the d-jet are uncalled for and wrong.” If my comments are stupid then go ahead and ignore them. I ignore 95% of your stupid comments;-)

Let’s see..

Stan thought enough of the inlet design to warn Gunner.
Flightguy got confirmation of the inlet problem from what it would appear to be Diamond.
I got the information second hand.
Major redesign on D-Jet Sn2’s inlets.

Four sources pointing to design issues with the D-jet inlet. Gunner first you bought an Eclipse and now 3 D-Jets boy you sure can pick’m.

airtaximan said...

OK, I will.... one last coment...

you are fighting with the Albert Einstein of VLJ development programs when you disagree with the likes of JetFumes..

But have it you way... to anyone in the know, you are a fool.

BTW, why pick on Diamond with fales speculation when you have a position with eclips?

Who cares?

Like I said, buy the Coldwell position at cost, and move along...your misinformation and wrong speculation is tainting this blog.

sparky said...

ATM,

Any takers on how long it takes ken to post something stupid about the e-bird's carbon footprint?

EclipseOwner387 said...

Black Tulip,

I am working on a trip in an Eclipse to KBED the second week of October. I need to visit my Burlington office and it would be a great way to show the Eclipse to some sharp but level headed critics.

Will you be in town? I may even bring my thin skin in for Whytech to rub the wrong way.

I am working on getting an aeromod version but it may be the original. Either way it will be a good demonstration.

Any in the area that week let me know and I will try to accommodate a flight. This in not a done deal but I would say it is 90% probability.

Best,
EO

dcrum@yahoo.com

AlexA said...

ATM you see what I mean by stupid comments “you are fighting with the Albert Einstein of VLJ development programs when you disagree with the likes of JetFumes..”

I’m not fighting with anyone. Simply expressing opinions and passing on information.

So ATM why don’t you share your thoughts of Kmart versus WalMart.

airtaximan said...

sparky:


you'll see:

"lowest"
"best"
"least"
"minimize"

etc...

I am truly amazed that after all was spent, they will suffer from this lack of marketing savvy on this critical point, especially in europe...

Did I say a few minutes? Also, someone might beat him to the punch.

PS. I've tried to make the argument for a larger plane that could accomodate more passengers per trip... reducing the per passenger cost, (and environmental impact) but the die hardons won't hear of it.

AlexA said...

ATM,

Maybe if you post it a third time it will make it true.

Ringtail said...

Alexa posted:

Here is a cut and paste from the deposit agreement
“-Equipped for know ice certification – actual certification for know ice may follow post-delivery”

You guys are great at double standards.


Yes, Alexa, indeed they do.

Gunner, does this clause bother you at all?

sparky said...

while we're on the unlikely topic of "carbon footprints"....tree huggers like to scream about the carbon emissions of the airlines, but fail to realize that, per passenger, it has a signifacantly lower impact than auto's.

PS. I fully expect ken to post something along the lines of the eclipse actually absorbing carbon as it flies

airtaximan said...

alex:

he is right, and you are wrong...and you keep fighting with him...

Your comment to me about Walmart, IS telling... you made a dumb analogy to Walmart, and I called you on it. Was this a year ago? Still smarts, but heck, it fits and holds true today...

You were wrong then, and you are wrong now...and if you try this crap for affect...well, I understand, you have a "position" to protect...like Kenny - you WAIT and PRAY for some aluminum for your deposit and progress payment. Post whatever you can to advertise the e-clips promise... you need another ponzi to pay for YOUR plane.

OK, FAITHFUL - buy the Coldwell plane at NO PREMIUM, and be done with it. GO FOR IT...

You degrade this blog. You degrade any self-respecting e-clips OWNER-IN-WAITING.

airtaximan said...

Ringtail,

somehow, I think the open ended honesty of Diamond is a refreshing departure from the BS promises that have all been missed by a long and suspicious hot by E-clips.

Its one thing to tell you up fromnt, its another to lie... or at the very least be off by years and years, hundreds of deliveries or thousands of dollars.

I know you do not want to hear the truth - you just like to believe... but heck, at least they are UPFRONT, direct and honest about it.

Shame on you.

AlexA said...

ATM said “...and you keep fighting with him...” Another stupid comment ATM?

I’m not fighting with anyone. Since you have an opinion on everything please share with us your background. Stupid is as stupid does.

Gunner said...

Alexa asked of ATM:
Since you have an opinion on everything please share with us your background.

You first. Earlier in this thread, I asked the same of you. Wanna share?
Gunner

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