Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Special Guest Lecturer For This Week's Class !


I am most pleased to have obtained Mr. Richard Aboulafia's permission to post his July 2009 newsletter, the topic of which is Boeing's ah, "progress" with the 787 program.
Mr. Aboulafia is Vice President of Analysis for the Teal Group, and his was one the earliest (and most accurate and credible) assessments of the challenges faced by our friends in Albuquerque during their arduous march to certification and production- and, well, bankruptcy. That drama is still being played out, as the bankruptcy proceedings...um, proceed- and will continue to be a central theme of the blog. But it is interesting to note that even the "big guys" can have their share of challenges too.
Without further ado, and with utmost appreciation; here's Richard's July 2009 Newsletter (inclusive article starts/stops with red text, and is shown without quotation marks for the reader's convenience):

Dear Fellow DayDreamliner Believers,

The battle of Jutland didn’t start well for the Royal Navy. As the British and German fleets fired their opening rounds, three RN capital ships took direct hits. Two were battlecruisers that blew up and sank, taking thousands of sailors with them. In the midst of the carnage, Admiral Sir David Beatty turned to his flag captain and said “There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today.”

I’m reminded of this droll understatement because, for Boeing, there seems to be something wrong with their bloody plane today. The week after Le Bourget, the industry was hit with the latest 787 news – first flight was delayed again, this time due to problems with the wing-to-body join structure. This development cast an unpleasant retroactive shadow over Le Bourget. Boeing said it was looking at possible fixes and tried to sound upbeat, or as upbeat as possible given the circumstances. They haven’t provided a new schedule, but that’s just as well because nobody would take a sixth schedule particularly seriously. Days after that announcement, Boeing moved to buy Vought’s share of the 787 program, which unintentionally signaled that the company had not yet fully straightened out the situation with at least one of its major partners.

This is all seriously bad. As we digested the news, I paused to reflect on just what a tremendous drug-like rush the 787 program once was, and just what a ghastly let down it has become. A few years ago I said it was the aviation equivalent of the i-Pod – a revolutionary product that would be a category killer and would change the way we perceive of aircraft production. The sales figures were extraordinary. It was clearly the key to Boeing’s reinvention, and to helping the company maintain its status as an export powerhouse. We knew a market downturn was coming, but the 787 looked set to keep its supply chain companies –much of the aerospace industry – healthy due to overwhelming demand. The 787 also looked set to prove that advanced market economies could compete in manufacturing, and that global industrial supply chains were a brilliant concept. No wonder the 787’s structure has stress problems – that’s a lot of weight for a mere airplane to bear.

The 787 had additional meaning because of what it wasn’t. It came with a coherent business case, without delusions and wishful thinking. The 787 was created as a truly global product, rather than as a foolish display of national pride. The 787 introduced new technology. Most of all, the 787 is what the market wants – an efficient, long-ranged mid-market plane, perfect for new point-to-point routes that would bring the world closer together. In short, the 787 was in all ways the exact opposite of the A380. Unfortunately for Boeing, the A380, while still commercially irrelevant, is flying in revenue service. We have no idea when the 787 will achieve that status.

This final delay has also obliterated much of Boeing’s credibility. BCA executives have reasonable explanation for their optimistic posturing at Le Bourget. They were apparently not informed about the extent of the problems at that point. But those of us at the rollout two years ago (on 7-8-07) are stuck with some baffling memories, and few explanations with much plausibility. Executives there were every bit as optimistic as they were at Le Bourget, firmly convinced that the plane would fly two months later. Either you had very high ranking executives willing to lie, or you had an organization that was completely unable to tell those high ranking executives that the plane that had just been rolled in had more in common with a Revell model kit than with anything that actually might get airborne.

To understand how this happened, you need to look back in time. A grossly oversimplified recent history of Boeing: Twelve years ago McDonnell Douglas effectively used Boeing’s money to buy Boeing. This resulted in a struggle between a faction that wanted to invest in Boeing’s future (basically the legacy Boeing crowd) and a faction that wanted to invest in Boeing’s shareholders (basically the McDonnell Douglas leadership).You can find a slightly less simplified chronicle of these events in my May 2003 and December 2003 letters, archived at http://www.richardaboulafia.com/.

The future investment faction won, but at a price: the McDonnell Douglas zombie bit them before it died. To sell the new plane to the board and to investors, they needed to get as much cost and risk as possible off Boeing’s books. This resulted in a short-sighted decision to trust enormous parts of the 787’s development and integration work to partners, without due diligence to ensure that these partners were up to the job. (Disclosure: I was a big fan of this approach at the time, and I still think production work outsourcing is a good idea.) Like a lot of the US economy in the last decade, the program relied way too much on leverage to make something big happen with an inadequate financial base. The desire to create the plane at minimal cost also resulted in an impossibly aggressive schedule that just made things worse. Work was performed out-of-sequence or with temporary components just to meet arbitrary cost-driven milestones, without any production processes put in place. Billions in cost overruns, late fees, and other expenses are the result. The Vought 787work acquisition adds another $1 billion to the bill ($580million in cash, $422 million in payments forgiveness). The savings from putting design and development work in the hands of partners has been dwarfed by the cost of remedying the damage wrought by that strategy.

Finally, the new Boeing also disempowered the company’s engineers, turning its back on a decades-old management culture that didn’t always produce profits but did always produce great planes. Instead, it embraced McDonnell Douglas’s culture of leadership by money people. This disconnect between engineers and finance executives would explain why bad news wasn’t communicated upstairs, either at Le Bourget 2009 or at the 7-8-07 rollout. Countries that survive civil wars and internal strife, such as South Africa, create a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Boeing badly needs something like that, to establish what lines of communication broke down and what went horribly wrong.

What happens next? Nobody can say. There’s a strong chance that Boeing is being factual, and that the plane will arrive in 2010, and that it will perform as advertised. It’s also possible that there will be seventh, eighth, and ninth delays, with an EIS in 2011. There’s also an unlikely but not impossible worst case scenario: a 787 that’s simply a mediocre aircraft. The proven Boeing track record (“We’re ten for ten!”) has been replaced by the unpleasant memory of McDonnell Douglas’s checkered past. The nickel and dimed MD-11 mediocrity, the useless MD JSF competitor, the out-of-control cost overruns of the C-17, and worst of all, the scandalous MD/GD A-12 carrier stealth attack plane. The likely (or at least hopeful) scenario is that the 787 winds up like the C-17, a nightmare development program followed by an impressive technical achievement and a profitable production phase. But we can’t rule anything out. The A-12 is the most haunting extreme outlier: a mere Potemkin Village plane. Those of us at the 7-8-07 rollout wouldn’t have dreamt of that comparison at the time. But who knows what to believe anymore?

In short, the 787 has become less of an adrenaline rush of optimism, and more of a wait-and-see story. Returning to the Jutland analogy, as Churchill said of Admiral Jellicoe, commander of the British fleet in World War One, he is the only man who can lose the war in an afternoon. The men in charge of the 787 today must know exactly how that feels.

This month, we’ve updated the Commercial Jetliner market overview, as well as the 747, 767, CSeries, Dash 8, ERJ 170/190, C-27J/G.222, Hawker 800/4000, UH-1, UH-60, SH/MH-60, EC 145/UH-72,MD500, and the Nimrod. Have a good month.

Yours, “Til The RealityLiner Arrives,
Richard Aboulafia

As was posted on the previous thread- Woo- Hoo !! Long time Eclipse watchers no doubt enjoyed the irony in Mr. Aboulafia's description of events at "the lazy B ranch", and the similarity to those in "the land of enchanment". I would have to say, given Richard's familiarity with aviation history, and current events- he's both an aviation critic, and enthusiast!! Please accept our sincere thanks for your excellent analysis, and your graciousness in sharing it with us.

(Now, least I be accused of being un-critic-al, or overly enthusiast-ic; I am pleased to present "Another View", which provides solid confirmation of Mr. Aboulafia's insightful analysis ! :)

287 comments:

1 – 200 of 287   Newer›   Newest»
eclipse_deep_throat said...

In the previous thread, Ken said:
The owner-flown fleet, according to the ongoing sampling performed by E5C, currently stands at 5% owner-grounded (i.e. the owner elected to ground his plane), 3.3% grounded awaiting servicing, and 83.3% flying. I think that's extraordinary given the current circumstances and strongly argues for the reliability of the plane.

I know there are all sorts of pros and cons for any plane. But this begs the question, how are you getting spare parts?

The EA500 will eventually break down one way or another. Are you able to find A/P techs willing to service your plane? Is the Hawker-Beachcraft thing a done deal, for someone to create released engineering for the A/Ps to work from?

Even with my fuzzy memory, I'm know Vern had to admit the MTBF for the original Avio components was "really, really, bad." But his quote was from a generic description he gave us grunts about Avidyne. Regardless, something is going to break, perhaps a non-Avio component, and then someone is going to get frustrated and force their plane to fly when it shouldn't...

Also, your numbers translate to 21.58 planes grounded (3.3% + 5.0% = 8.3% of 260 planes). And then 83.3% = 216.58 planes flying. Where are the other 21-22 planes? Oh, those must be the mothballed DayJet planes, yes?Or working backwards and assuming the 216 flying planes is not variable, we'd have to count a total of 44 planes not flying (28 DayJet + 16 others) = 16.92%. Or is E5C not counting the DayJet planes for that 8.3% figure???

e.d.t.

No_Skids said...

Ahh . . the convergence of my two favorite aviation blogs. Enough to end the lurking and venture a post.

For anyone doubting Aboulafia's position on Eclipse, the following from Teal's report on Eclipse will clear up any uncertainty-

“The Eclipse program was designed from the outset to be revolutionary and unique. In Teal Group’s estimation, the people behind Eclipse have attained this objective. This program is the single worst aviation program
Teal Group has ever covered.”

And he was just getting warmed up . .

Back to the 787. The only critique I would make of Richard's analysis is it's very late in the game.

I work in what could be thought of as a refugee camp of Ex-Boeing engineers-the very people Richard describes when he writes that they "Didn't always produce profits but did always produce great planes."

All of them left during or about the time of the Engineering Strike at Boeing-a largely forgotten event that I believe sowed the seeds of the Dreamliner Delays.

And all of them have been saying essentially the same things that Richard wrote for about a decade.

Still, it's telling to have a self acknowledged "numbers guy" recognize the damage done by that approach.

And the 787 post is not a one time mea culpa by Richard-his December 2008 post on the juxtaposition of analysts and romantics is a compelling read as well.

In prior employment, I worked at a Boeing Supplier. None of the experienced engineers would touch the 787 product because the approach was so fundamentally flawed as to be unsalvagable. (It's currently being designed out of the plane while they figure out how to fly the dang thing).

Sad sad sad . . .

Deep Blue said...

Very nice idea getting RA's write up on the Blog; it adds a lot of additional expertise and prestige.

A few quick comments:

1. Not only is the 787 program at risk intrinsically at Boeing due to internal design, manufacturing and finance decisions, but now the end user or external market, the airlines, face what looks like a real structural upset, rather than just another "downturn." Thisis a potential double blow that is not survivable; BA could possibly be drawn into a BK with the structural crisis at the airline level, along with the Obama Admin's restructuring of defense spending; and don't forget competition: still excessive and nearly as badly oversupplied as the airline industry. See today's NYTimes coverage

2. The 787 may have a much different operational birth than other more traditional designs; i.e. the damn thing hasn't even flown yet, let alone flown in operations, which is the real flight test. Numerous flaws may show up in operations; moreover, MRO routines are untested.

Shane Price said...

Richard was always a 'fan' of the Critic blog. At one point he described us a 'endlessly amusing'.

As for 787 v A380, I think he might be proved a tiny bit wrong. I believe there is a place for the A380, on the 'thick' routes, simply because there are still lots of people who want to fly from Heathrow to O'Hare or JFK to Schipol.

But these major hubs are facing real problems expanding the number of slots available so....

Enter the A380 'super jumbo', which also happens to boast very low 'cost per passenger mile'.

The theory for the 787 is the so called 'long and thin' routes. In theory a customer can fly, say, Raleigh N.C. to Lyon in France, quickly and at very low cost.

This is fine when lots of people from North Carolina fancy dinner in the culinary capital of France.

But not such a good idea during the worst recession anybody cares to remember.

I'm going to call this one as I see it. I think the 787 will suffer more cancellations than the A380 and Boeing will end up building a '747 XXL'.

In Seattle....

Shane

Ken Meyer said...

Personally, I've thought for a while that Richard Aboulafia comes off sounding much of the time like a bastion of negativism. I thought he had it in for Eclipse with all the nasty stuff he wrote over the years.

But I owe Mr. Aboulafia an apology. He's not actually a negativist. He tells us what he is in his December newsletter, a small extract of which follows:

"There are basically two groups. One loves planes and the culture of planes. Perhaps they are pilots, hobbyists, or engineers, a broad and ecumenical group. Let’s call them “romantics.” Then there are folks who have jobs like mine. This group, call them “analysts,” care about exactly one thing: return on investment...

Romantics love new technology, new transportation options, national and regional prestige, and giving people jobs. If a plane looks like it will do any of these things, romantics want it to happen. Analysts, by contrast, don’t want to know about any of this. They only want to know if a plane will make money...

So…hooray for us analysts, right? Nope. Far from it. Analysts face an uncomfortable truth. Most of the great achievements in aviation would never have happened if analysts were completely in charge. Concorde. Comet. Possibly even the 747 (fathered by great romantics like Juan Trippe). The analysts’ mandate is to prevent misinvestment and promote profitable enterprises. That rules out an awful lot of good things."


For me, that column explains a great many things about our guest this week. If it had been up to Richard Aboulafia, the Concorde, the Comet and even the the 747 would have been belittled much the same as the Eclipse.

As a romantic, I look forward to the future success of the Eclipse 500 because the pilot in me has found out first hand that it's a awfully good little plane. It will be a niche plane, for sure. But there are some very nice niche planes out there--how many TBM-850's are produced a year? Sixty or so, isn't it? A plane doesn't have to sell a thousand copies a year as those more romantic than me predicted for the Eclipse.

Ken

Ken Meyer said...

Eclipse Deep Throat asked "how are you getting spare parts?"

Scrounging mostly :)

Spare parts are *the* single biggest issue facing Eclipse owners today. The situation is gradually getting better--suppliers are seeking PMA on their parts. For now, owners scrounge a bit, and some parts are sent for overhaul rather than replacement.

A number of very good shops have stepped into the void left when EAC entered Chapter 7. I was pleasantly surprised with my most recent routine service visit--it was closer to home, efficient and cost effective. So maintenance is not the issue; it's parts.

Eclipse owners obviously need resolution of the Chapter 7 in order to open up the parts chain, and I think we'll see it shortly.

Ken

Shane Price said...

Ken,

Eclipse owners obviously need resolution of the Chapter 7 in order to open up the parts chain, and I think we'll see it shortly.

That sounds like a turkey voting for Christmas to me!

Be careful what you wish for. I think the 'resolution' you're expecting is not the one coming down the tracks...

Shane

Deep Blue said...

Ken:

very nice write up; a good way to describe the E500; if that isn't a fair "owner-enthusiast' assessment, I don't know what is.

Shane:

Spot on analysis; I thought you were in the printing business? Perhaps an undercover aerospace analyst all along?

As for Boeing's default positions, they could do what they proposed for the military tanker program: off the shelf, modified 767. That is still a highly modifiable platform for various commercial use; so is the 777 (really, not terribly different than the pro forma 787 at the end of the day).

I see various airplane kluges on the horizon, all while Airbus, EMB, Canadair, Mitsubishi, Russia, and China put poor Boeing in a vice grip.

Possibly a merger or take-over on the horizon as well. Of course, Boeing has a big lobby presence in DC and is a potential bail out candidate through DOD programs (and union vote purchasing).

Otherwise, the 787 and E500 are looking like converging program profiles in design, execution, cost and supply chain difficulties (including poor understanding of supplier risk, capacity, capability and investment levels).

Black Tulip said...

Is there an ‘owner enthusiast’ market for the Boeing 787? I remember looking across the ramp at Riyadh, Saudi Arabia at the Royal Family Terminal. Maybe this family and a few others will ‘need’ one.

Shane Price said...

Deep Blue,

Like a lot of people here, aviation is a hobby, not a full time activity.

However, I carry my brain with me, all the time. And the grey matter tells me that the 787 program faces fundamental problems in the market. The program delays are just providing an excuse for those who've ordered to 'bail out' at little or no cost.

And why not? If Boeing are right, and 'long and thin' is indeed the future, they can probably get back on the treadmill.

Or they can order an A350XWB, probably at a competitive discount....

In the meantime, as the A380 seems to be very popular with those who've flown one, I expect that Airbus will retain the (much smaller) number of orders they hold, if only because the aircraft offers a unique capability.

I'm not saying Airbus are perfect, or that Boeing are useless. It's just that, from where I'm sitting, the 787 program looks 'challenged'.

Shane

bill e. goat said...

Welcome to Richard Aboulafia!
We all were giddy with delight to see some objective analysis of the Eclipse program, it's encouraging to see a "critic-al" review of the 787 debacle.

NoSkids,
"Back to the 787. The only critique I would make of Richard's analysis is it's very late in the game."

Well, since it's 2 years late for first flight- already...maybe Richard's analysis is more "mid game" rather than "late game"- despite vociferous proclomations otherwise- seems like we have the "game tapes" to review of a similar previous situation !!
:)

airtaximan said...

Ken great post...

Just a reminder, that you have always said you bought the EA50 because of its economics.

There were times when you acted more like an analyst, tauting the ea50 order book, stating there were amazing utilization models of which we knew nothing that would create untold demand for this little jet.... bla bla bla...

Truth be told, you now love the plane's handling... but something tells me, you would love the Phenom, Mustang... etc... just as much... plus you wouldn't have all the headaches and uncertainty which is now all part of the Eclipse brand.

There was nothing great about the EA50 except is was subsidized and sold cheap... and it ain't no more...

Dave said...

Just a reminder, that you have always said you bought the EA50 because of its economics.

Yes, Ken is doing a bit of revionist history as he over and over again touted the economics. Now he's trying to act like he's the next John Keats.

Deep Blue said...

ATM said:

"Truth be told, you now love the plane's handling... but something tells me, you would love the Phenom, Mustang... etc... just as much... plus you wouldn't have all the headaches and uncertainty which is now all part of the Eclipse brand."

Indeed, he would probably love them more. But the big sell of the E500 was price; imagine: originally $875K! Even the escalation to $1.2MM was just within tolerance; it was the "value" priced option for entry level jet owners; unfortunately the damn price got up so high that it crossed the cost-benefit boundary many times over; now, as you imply, the total risk adjusted costs (parts availability, service, residual value)are enormous compared to alternatives.

At any rate, a premium Lear 35A strikes me as a profoundly better deal; and I wouldn't fly single pilot anyway (not a big fan of +50 year olds at jet altitude especially, with no "back up" biological system!

Ken Meyer said...

Dave wrote, "Ken is doing a bit of revionist history as he over and over again touted the economics"

No; AT, Deep Blue and you are all making the same mistake: you're confusing macroeconomics with microeconomics. Or, more accurately, *my* personal economics with the business sense of the economic model adopted by EAC that Aboulafia took exception to.

What is exciting about the Eclipse 500 is that it is affordable for an owner/pilot to operate. That was the part of Vern's dream that caught hold with owners. Most of us couldn't give a hoot whether he darkened the skies with EA-500's; we wanted a fast, sexy, fun jet that met one extraordinarily important criteria: it had to be affordable to operate.

Otherwise, I could have bought an old CJ or CE500 or--God forbid--a beat up old Lear that would inevitably become the lawn dart that you guys mistakenly predicted my Eclipse would become because it would cost way too much to keep it in the air. Heck, I was already typed in the CJ; I could've hopped in it and flown it home, but then what do I do?

The whole idea is that the Eclipse--in addition to being fast, fun, sexy, quiet, safe, comfortable and all those other things--is affordable to operate. There's where the romance comes in.

Ken

gadfly said...

Having worked closely in composites, since the late 1950's, and observing “conventional wisdom”, it’s easy to see why things can go terribly wrong. In all fairness, composites have the clear advantage over metals . . . aluminum, to be specific. That is not the problem. The problem is in human behavior, which quickly finds its way into design and manufacturing.

Aluminum is consistent in quality, strength, etc., . . . right from the mill. And working with metals (aluminum is the “new kid” on the block) goes back . . . well, thousands of years. In that time span, hard-earned techniques are understood, and accepted.

Composites (fiber re-enforced plastics) are “new” to mankind (although actually as old as creation). The benefits of fiber re-enforced plastics are as obvious as the growth of a “tree”, yet in the clumsy hands of “man”, things quickly go “south”. A designer sees the advantage of say . . . . “carbon” or “glass” fibers or “whisker sapphire”, and bases a design on that premise. And is surprised when things go “bang” in the night. So, to compensate for design flaws, or lack of manufacturing control, a little extra “resin” here, a little extra “fiber” there, and suddenly the aircraft is terribly overweight, with an entirely new set of problems, due to excessive cross-sectional areas (and countless other un-anticipated “gotcha’s”) . . . which only exacerbates the problem.

Having fabricated “40" and “100" gold/platinum slip-ring assemblies of epoxy, re-enforced with Nylon (observable under a microscope), and building honeycomb panels, “12 feet by 81 feet, 3 ½ inches thick, weighing about 3 ½ pounds per square foot (of fiberglass re-enforced polyester resin) . . . and constructing un-supported domes (137 foot diameter, with an 18 foot rise, for 30 psf snow load, and 120 mph wind load), I think I’ve seen just about every human trait in action. The “natural elements” were the easy part in design, but the human element gave the maximum problem. We found it easier to take someone “off the street” and train them, than to take an “expert” who had been building fiberglass boats, etc., all his life. The early learned techniques were wrong, and almost impossible for people to “un-learn”.

And, somehow, I suspect that Boeing and Airbus are in denial . . . learning that their biggest battle is with “common knowledge”, which is entirely wrong. Will they make it in time? . . . Who knows! It’s “doable” . . . but not easy . . . people are the problem.

gadfly

Dave said...

No; AT, Deep Blue and you are all making the same mistake: you're confusing macroeconomics with microeconomics.

Trying to say that microeconomics is romantic is major comedy rhodium.

Deep Blue said...

Ken:

I appreciate your point on DOCs and it's a good one. Lord knows a CJ, Lear or other older gen jets can be pretty pricy to operate; having owned and operated a Lear and older Falcon 20, I can attest to the very substantial investments made in maintenance! On the other hand, they were very high performance in flight and/or cabin size/features and very reliable; and really not apples-to-apples with a GA VLJ. They can also, if well managed, be put into a revenue program which, again, if done well (not usually the case) can offset substantial cash costs and the higher depreciation basis can be valuable.

I understand VR's goal on very frugal operating and fixed maintenance costs for the owner-operator; perhaps no other GA jet OEM was so focused on it. The Mustang and Phenom are wonderful but a bit more in the traditional maintenance cost regime.

However, the E500 also was certified under a different program (many think inferior) versus transport category aircraft and other attempts to "simplify" may or may not have worked out. Frankly, some liberties in "simplicity" make me personally uncomfortable, but that's just my own bias. My bottom line with an E500 or other VLJ is price: if low enough, it can present a compelling trade-off versus traditional LJ's or t-props. But your utility also has to be 'jet performance' as the cabin is also a trade-off. I remember well when VR announced the jet and the price (about $875K) and that was indeed a head turner.

It will be interesting to see if the "Honda Jet" turns out to be as reliable and cost effective as their auto line, even though it's rather premium priced (nearly 4MM, I believe).

baron95 said...

Black Tulip said... Is there an ‘owner enthusiast’ market for the Boeing 787?
=====================
Yes. IIRC, there are 8 VIP 787 Orders, with Lufthansa Teknick under contract to do most of the interiors.

baron95 said...

Ken said...What is exciting about the Eclipse 500 is that it is affordable for an owner/pilot to operate. That was the part of Vern's dream that caught hold with owners.
========================

People here forget that Eclipse and Vern brought a number of innovations for the owner/operated personal jet space.

You can argue that the execution and results were, in the end, fatal.

BUT, circa 1998-2000 Vern/Eclipse AND ONLY VERN/ECLIPSE, put together the complete package for the personal jet owner/pilot.

Sub-6,000 lbs, sub 6-seats for insurability.

Training/Mentoring program to remove type-rating unsurance barriers.

Company-sponsored insurance and financing programs.

Avionics integration (Before there was a G1000 or Proline 21).

JetComplete, by the hour, programs.

Low acquisition, parts, operating costs (through volume).

You have to remember. Before Eclipse, light jets the $5M CJ1 being the lightest were targeted primarily at corporate flight departments and fractional ownership management companies.

The Mustang and the Mustang ownership support programs were a 4 years later reaction to the Eclipse program.

You can not underestimate the importance that played in owner/pilots placing deposits/orders with Eclipse in the first 4 years.

THERE WAS NO OTHER JET MANUFACTURER catering to their needs. Simple as that.

That is why I insist on sounding like a broken record - criticize the execution, not the ideas and innovations that Eclipse and Vern brought (or tried to bring) to GA.

Same with 787. Criticize the execution. That IS BROKEN. Not the plane's design, the idea of risk/design/manufacturing sharing, or the market need for the plane. There is NO INDICATION that there is anything wrong with the latter.

What the hell has happened to Boeing's exec and program management of the 787 is a failure beyond comprehension. It can ONLY be caused, by management NOT WANTING TO HEAR THE TRUTH.

WhyTech said...

"I remember looking across the ramp at Riyadh, Saudi Arabia at the Royal Family Terminal."

When I lived in MN, I often stopped at Rochester, MN for food and fuel. It was not uncommon to see 2-3 747's on the ramp with Middle East markings, their owners visiting the Mayo CLinic. So, yes, there is definitely an owner-enthusiast market for the 787.

baron95 said...

Shane said...I'm going to call this one as I see it. I think the 787 will suffer more cancellations than the A380
========================
Well, there are 183 unfilled orders for the A380 and 850 unfilled orders for the 787 - almost 5 times as many.

So numbers alone make your "prediction" on absolute cancellation numbers a sure proposition.

========================
Shane also said... I believe there is a place for the A380, on the 'thick' routes, simply because there are still lots of people who want to fly from Heathrow to O'Hare or JFK to Schipol.
.....
But not such a good idea during the worst recession anybody cares to remember.
==========================
This is the first time I've heard anyone argue that the A380 helps in recessionary times. Quite the contrary, airlines like TG are trying to get out of their A380 contracts particularly, because of demand reduction on the recession.

Tell us Shane, what happens, when you have a 30% demand reduction on a thick route that you had an A380 operating on?

Do you send it out with 30% of seats and cargo bay empty, which is financial suicide? Do you firesale seats which is suicide by yield destruction? Do you park the entire plane in the desert? Do you INVENT another thick route that can support 500+ pax overnight in the middle of a recession?

Not pretty choices, huh?

On the other hand, if instead of a single A380, you were operating 3 frequencies on 787, you could, easily, remove one of the frequencies from the route, preserve your yield (matching demand with capacity) AND launch a new point to point route with the remaining 787, since that is the perfect airplane size to develop a new long/direct route.

Anyway, that has been discussed for quite some time in the industry.

It is still a moot point, because Boeing management doesn't seem capable of managing the 787 program and the Boeing board chooses to remain inactive and ineffective in the sidelines.

I'm starting to think that even Vern or one of the Obama task forces could not possibly do a worse job.

baron95 said...

No Skids said...None of the experienced engineers would touch the 787 product because the approach was so fundamentally flawed as to be unsalvagable.
=====================
Really? So those companies let their engineers pick and choose their assignments with no regard to the companies needs? Or is it the case that you are feeling bad that due to the union intransigence your job is now being done by someone else?

I doubt very much that any of the problems don't simply have Boeing's failure to proper manage the program as a root cause. It is not the design, the distributed supply chain, the materials. It is pure and simple unadulterated failure to welcome open and realistic communications and assessments of issues.

And I think that is the commonality with Eclipse. Neither Vern nor Boeing's management want to real an honest and realistic assessment of their problems.

They are probably doing what I call "shopping for good news". Keep on shuffling assignments and asking for second opinions until one person tells you what you want to hear. Then put that person in charge and disregard all other "bad" opinions. Do that enough times, and you end up with NO CLUE about your true program status.

I.e. Avio. I.e. 787.

baron95 said...

On a lighter note...Here is a BMW designed 787-VIP interior - note the car in the cargo hold with glass viewing ;)

gadfly said...

Funny thing about many of these comments . . . the discussion is usually about the financial end, and most commentators show little or no understanding of the very things that make their world actually “work”. OK . . . to make things simple, simply take away the man down on the floor that “puts together” the thing-a-ma-jig, that flies from here to there . . . or go back another step, to the guy that has an intimate knowledge of the shape of the cutting edge of a “bit” on a lathe, that makes “chips”, without burning up the cutting edge, and knows about dumb things like the best lubricant to form “threads” in a piece of 7075-T6 aluminum, . . . and on and on.

Pixar had a wonderful movie, “A Bug’s Life”. One day, “Flick” came back with a solution . . . not the best, to be sure, but never-the-less he did the “unthinkable”, and the real solution was finally understood.

So, while all the “grasshoppers” are discussing “what to do”, there is a great knowledge base available, ready and eager to make things happen.

No, it’s not a political issue, it’s more a “pride” issue, admitting that maybe a person is looking for answers in the wrong direction . . . and maybe those folks at a “lower social level” might have some good solutions . . . not all the answers, but at least a few.

gadfly

(Yep! You’re right. I like “tweaking somebody’s beak” . . . it’s a good way to force someone to think outside their little world of “pride” and “self confidence”.)

(And, Baron, Obama is doing exactly what he said he would do . . . and almost no-one believed him, especially those who voted for him.)

gadfly said...

Why Tech

This thing was suppose to die, criticizing the “Eclipse”, and now you mention private jets from the “Near East”. About twenty years ago, I had the “privilege” (big question “?”) of designing and machining four plaques, of 7075 aluminum, (border parts “0.125 inches thick, and inserts “0.090" thick), to be “gold plated”, with two to be inlaid with “Lapis Lazuli”, and the other two to be inlaid with the “satin” gold inserts, for King Fahd’s private jet. I chose “7075 aluminum” because of the weight constraints of the aircraft (I understood that it was a Boeing). It was fun at the time . . . designing/programming the palm trees, the crossed scimitars and palm tree, complete with “inlaid fronds” and details of the main trunk, and border detail. (Getting paid by the contractor was not fun . . . it took a full year.) All parts were machined on a Mitsubishi Wirecut-EDM . . . and at the time, we were the only facility in New Mexico with a wirecut-EDM.

Those were “fun days” . . . on the bloody cutting edge of technology . . . using the latest and greatest of CAD/CAM systems . . . and able to put “artistic” expression and abilities into tool-steel, . . . or in this case, “aluminum”. With political constraints, those days may be a footnote in history.

Problem: I never got to see the final result . . . and I would have liked to see the plaques mounted in the aircraft. Anyone have any information? This had to be a big thing at the time . . . and I can only imagine the final result.

gadfly

baron95 said...

Obama is doing exactly what he said he would do . . . and almost no-one believed him, especially those who voted for him.
=========================
Yep. He is. He is running the US and Swiss banking system, GM, Chrysler, and the 2009 Fiscal year deficit passed the $1.08 Trillion as in 1000 Billion dollar mark with several months to go.

And you know what?

Good for him. He is the Chief. We voted him in, so let him do his thing.

Let the Chinese and Fred worry about it. They own our debt anyway. Last time I checked, I had 0.8% of my holdings indirectly in Treasury securities. So as far as I'm concerned, life is good - so long as he doesn't try to raise my taxes to pay for any of this crap, I'm cool.

Spend, spend, spend baby.

No_Skids said...

Just one post, and Baron's already taking issue with what I've written. I feel right at home already.

I'll try to clarify

B95 wrote-

"Really? So those companies let their engineers pick and choose their assignments with no regard to the companies needs?"


This goes to the question of whether an engineer agrees to work on something that they know will fail. No matter how heroic our efforts might have been, the immutable laws of physics said it could not work.
Each engineer has to work out how they'll handle that situation. Most of us chose to decline the work, even at risk of our employment.
You can blame Boeing program management for selecting an unworkable architecture (which, as noted in the original post, is being replaced). But (in my opinion) it's a failure of Boeing Engineering.

B95 Continued-

"Or is it the case that you are feeling bad that due to the union intransigence your job is now being done by someone else?"


I've never worked for Boeing or been part of any union. I only mentioned working for a Boeing supplier.

I left that supplier because I found a better company to work for-one that didn't accept work that could not be completed successfully.

Let's leave the leaps of assumption about peoples background and motivations to Dr. Phil and others who specialize in such nonsense.

I certainly agree with the rest of B95's post-Boeing has a severe internal communications problem. If they don't fix that, the company is at risk.

gadfly said...

baron

Suddenly, the infamous “can of beans” is going to look mighty valuable, if it is one of a few hundred “siblings” on the shelves in our basement, along with a few hundred pounds of rice, if our economy continues at the present pace. Yesterday, I got another e-mail “job application” from an “ex” Eclipse employee . . . looking for something to put bread on his table . . . and I have nothing to offer, except my “good wishes”. He called, and even sent a “FAX” . . . ‘Sounds desperate. But, I showed no mercy, and turned him down flat! (If I were his “English” teacher, I would have given him a “B+” . . . that should have counted for something!)

Ken will no doubt be glad to know that there are many such folks out there, who provided his convenient form of “on demand” transportation.

But then, “Who cares!” . . . a bunch of suckers provided some “neat toys” for a very few “elite” folks . . . and life goes on.

gadfly

KnotMPH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gadfly said...

KnotMPH

If a Luscombe Silvaire were a woman, she’d be a beautiful Swedish blond . . . the girl I married.

Moody had a Luscombe “Silvaire” . . . the problem was that it just refused to “come down” . . . the thing would fly forever, if you’d let it.

gadfly

(That’s not fair: My mind filled with visions of a Swedish blond . . . and a “Luscombe Silvaire” . . . and my Swedish blond has the car, is supposed to come to the shop soon . . . none too soon! Old pilots never die . . . they just fly away!)

bill e. goat said...

Hello No_Skids,
"Just one post, and Baron's already taking issue with what I've written. I feel right at home already".

Welcome to the blog!
:>)

bill e. goat said...

Hi Gadfly,
I much enjoyed your fascinating post on the prevous thread, about working with -really- high temperature composite, as well as your experiences related today- wow!! Things must seem rather pedestrian lately, with so few "really new" things coming along anymore.

gadfly said...

Goat

Thanks for your comments. However, very few "really new" things ever come along. Almost everything is a "re-hash" of something long ago. The first "digital TV" is a rehash of something that took place before 1900 . . . and the ball-point pen was actually "invented" in the mid 1800's. The "Preacher" said in the Bible ("Ecclesiastes"), there is nothing new under the sun.

There are many bright ideas waiting to "happen", but with the political climate being what it is, many "common folks" are reluctant to move ahead. And when the intimidation of a "college education" comes to an end, those with practical knowledge and skills may again re-build what has been ruined by so-called "experts".

Education is extremely important, but not an end in itself. It is merely a "tool" to be used by skilled craftsmen.

gadfly

(We were all expecting that "can of beans" to explode, but it developed a slow leak . . . and simply fizzled out.)

bill e. goat said...

Ken,
I share your "romaticism", but admire Richard Aboulafia's "pragatism".

I think in the "game" of aircraft investment, he would DEFINITELY be my answer to the "ambasador of other people's money" syndrome.

Re:
Comet- BZZZZT
Concorde- BZZZZT
747- DING
Eclipse- BZZZZT
787- half time score- 0:850 (flights to orders)

Not including the 787 game- too close to call- Richard's "batting average, using the score's you've allocated, would seem to be .750- Major League Hitter, for sure !!

(Personally, I bet he would have "called" the 747 game accurately, and been at 100%)

KnotMPH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
WhyTech said...

"so long as he doesn't try to raise my taxes to pay for any of this crap, I'm cool."

Tell us again what planet you live on? Seen the House proposal to fund health care "reform?"

Dave said...

Tell us again what planet you live on? Seen the House proposal to fund health care "reform?"

Yeah, raising taxes during a recession. The surcharge for being successful should hurt more than a few industries.

bill e. goat said...

Dave,
"Yeah, raising taxes during a recession"

Hmmm. Seems like we cut taxes during "prosperous" mid-2000's, doulbed the national debt, and wrecked the economy.

So investing in infrastructure and health care is going to be the end of us??

Shane Price said...

Goat,

So investing in infrastructure and health care is going to be the end of us??

Not investing in public works and social supports at a time of economic stresses WILL be the end of many things.

Especially during a recession.

What will annoy many people on your side of the pond will be your current President insisting on real taxes to be paid by 'high net worth' individuals.

It won't matter how it's achieved, but it will happen. Some will favor spending taxes, others will plumb for property (annual or transaction based) and a different group will seek income based schemes.

Get used to the idea, early, and the pain won't be so noticeable. It's like going to the dentist, not nearly as bad as you imagined it was going to be....

Shane

fred said...

hi all ...

(i'm back ... did you dream of getting rid of me so easily ? ;-) )

Hmmm. Seems like we cut taxes during "prosperous" mid-2000's, doulbed the national debt, and wrecked the economy.
So investing in infrastructure and health care is going to be the end of us??
...

not at all , in fact i believe that the only one way to make it in future is to "spread" a little more nation richnesses fairly ...

the relation between makers and earners is a synergy , if the ones at one end are left with the only opportunity to watch the ones on other end having quality whatever = it always end-up into some kind of mess , then everybody loose !

Trying to say that microeconomics is romantic is major comedy rhodium. ...

Comedy ?

i thought Economy was a SERIOUS subject ?

Ha , it's kenny talking ...

sincere apologies !

Btw : i have seen Mustang (brand new) offered for 2.4US M. on controller.com (total price !)

what kind of economics is that to pay (loose) over a million $ to get a big piece of unfinished something (Ea500) VS a 2.4M $ for a real thing ?

Monsieur Shane :

Yes ! i can confirm your idea : once one has flown A380 , ideas about aviation may change quite a lot ... for better !

the funny thing : when Baron-type will have understood that the 2 planes are complementary , we will have achieved a giant leap ...

but for such a result , some needs to stop watching their belly-button ! ;-)

However, I carry my brain with me ...

how lucky you are ! i would like to be like you when grown-up ... ;-)

so long as he doesn't try to raise my taxes to pay for any of this crap, I'm cool. ...

unfortunately ... it doesn't work that way ...

he is the guy elected to do what he has to do , mainly a inheritance from past ...

so whatever has been overspent in past , will be repaid !

Shane Price said...

Just in case you think I'm a Socialist...

I should make it clear that I describe my basic politics as 'rational anarchist'.

In my opinion, all government is a bad thing, and making it bigger is not a recipe for making it better.

That's the anarchist bit.

The 'rational' part says we live in communities, like it or not. There has to be a framework of understanding between us as to how our interactions take place.

Without this 'agreement' we would all live in a state of perpetual war, as the stronger competed (ruthlessly) with the weaker for available resources.

Hence this thing called government.

So, in my perfect world, we'd all have the bare minimum required to smooth our communal relationships.

And not an iota more.

Shane

Shane Price said...

Fred,

Glad to see you 'found' your way here.

The really funny thing about the election of Barak Obama is that he told the American people exactly what he was going to 'do' i.e. raise taxes and cut spending.

This was for the very sound reason that there is no other way to reduce the Federal deficit.

Baron 95, on the other hand, is determined that the result of the election be ignored. He wants his taxes reduced and spending (which benefits him) increased.

The last time a significant number of Americans tired to ignore the result of a Presidential Election was in 1860. I'm fond of a quotation from one of the leading Union men in South Carolina, James L Petigru, who said after secession:-

“South Carolina is too small for a republic and too large for a lunatic asylum!”

At some time, in the not too distant future, the United States will come to realize that it's too 'small' to ignore global economic realities.

Will this be before, or after, the 787 first flight?

Hmmm...

Shane

WhyTech said...

"So investing in infrastructure and health care is going to be the end of us??"

No, its how we pay for this that is going to be the end of us. Increasing the burden on those who already pay the largest in percentage and dollar terms is not the answer. Obama uses the four letter "F" word a lot ... "fair." Requiring the top 1% of taxpayers to shoulder 70% of the tax burden doesnt get anywhere near my notion of fair, especially when 60% of wage earners pay no taxes. What we need is tax reform, not health care reform. As Margret Thatcher once said (approximately), "What happens when we run out of rich people to steal from?"

fred said...

Whytech :

yes , the real matter is HOW fairness is to be reached !

in the past years , the middle-class was rinsed into more and more spending for less and less results ...

for sure all the ones who were getting a share of the spending are now unhappy ...

so it is not really what the wealthy ones are paying or not paying , the important ...

it is what is the structure of tax-payers paying back what should haven't been spent in the first place !

there is no secret into this , everywhere it is about the same :

the poor pay zip !
(did you ever try to shave an egg ?)

the rich have enough to hide somewhere else !
(by paying lawyers who know how to play the system or simply moving away ...)

the ones left to "hold the bags" are the middle-class !
(funnily enough ,if a developing country gets better when the middle-class appear , the opposite remain true ... as well !)

Monsieur Shane :

your description about your politic-affiliation is absolutely brilliant !

and your analysis about "Reality" is very good !

"They" may have to understand (let's hope in near future ) that whatever is not white ... isn't automatically black !

fred said...

Baron 95, on the other hand, is determined that the result of the election be ignored. ...

i am a bit puzzled here ...

was it the same mood that send Troops far away in the name of "democracy" ?

it sounds very much like french socialists !!

(their motto is "Democracy is the best , especially when it is us deciding of everything !" )

your comment on "Funny bits in B.O. election" is wonderful ...

what was the formula again ....?

oh yes ... "read my lips ...."

Black Tulip said...

I keep a few of these in my wallet and dispense them on short notice. I find an increasing number of people who regard highly regard the new currency:

Three Dollar Bill

You can order them in bulk from:

Slick

Dave said...

Hmmm. Seems like we cut taxes during "prosperous" mid-2000's, doulbed the national debt, and wrecked the economy.

It might seem that way to you, but the taxes were cut when the economy was faltering. Now despite the proposed higher taxes we're still looking at the worst deficits in history, so we are getting the worst of both worlds with both a higher debt and higher taxes.

Ken Meyer said...

Freddie writes, "Btw : i have seen Mustang (brand new) offered for 2.4US M. on controller.com (total price !) what kind of economics is that to pay (loose) over a million $ to get a big piece of unfinished something (Ea500) VS a 2.4M $ for a real thing ?"

Which ad are you looking at? All the ones listed at $2.4M that I see on Controller are $2.4M base price plus CPI-W from August 2002 (which brings them close to $3M).

There are 36 Mustangs for sale on Controller, which is a remarkable number considering that the FAA-registered fleet is just 140. So, it wouldn't surprise anybody if they're selling at a considerable markdown, but I don't know any at $2.4M total price.

As for being the real thing, the Mustang is a very nice plane, but it is larger, slower, heavier, more fuel thirsty, more expensive to acquire and more expensive to operate than the EA-500. Hypothetically, if a company were to sell a finished Eclipse (yes, it is finally finished) at, say, $2.4M, I think they'd find a nice niche precisely because it has some qualities that are *better* than the Mustang yet it costs less, both upfront and ongoing.

Ken

Deep Blue said...

Well, since the blog has veered into political territory...

some wonder if the aerospace sector may be the next bailout action; specifically, Boeing. And the airline industry looks poised to drop one or more carriers into BK again; with NexGen on the FAA's to-do list and political pressure on NYC airspace re-design, noise, emissions, etc, will we see Obama Air? Is "Buy American" going to be extended to aircraft purchasing by US airlines?

(Forget about any assistance to GA or bizav; DC is in full airline and union tilt).

WhyTech said...

"will we see Obama Air?"

Coming soon to an airport near you. Too big to fail!

fred said...

Black tulip :

Excellent !

you see the US problem start right in the middle of the Slick-link you provided ...

The more you buy the more you save! ...

i thought the best way to save was to stop buying ?

after all those years , i finally understood what was wrong with my life ...! ;-)

thanks !!!

WhyTech said...

"but it is larger, slower, heavier, more fuel thirsty, more expensive to acquire and more expensive to operate than the EA-500. "

So is a G550 (except for slower), and for good reason.

fred said...

so we are getting the worst of both worlds with both a higher debt and higher taxes. ...

sorry i disagree ...!

what is going on now is the transition period , combine with the very weird situation US Economy is in ...

if the Govt doesn't spend the stimulus , the consumers will stop buying ... the depression will be worse ...

if the Govt spend the stimulus , they only add to deficits which will need to be repaid at some point (in increasing tax) so the consumers will stop buying , the depression will be worse ...

for sure i wouldn't like to be Barack ... whatever is done is going to hit the wall sooner or later !

airtaximan said...

fm Kne:
"What is exciting about the Eclipse 500 is that it is affordable for an owner/pilot to operate."

No Ken, all things considered its not... AND, just like you bought a crashed twin prop, becasue it was cheap, you bought the ea50, becasue it was cheap... and you put another deposit down becasue it was chep, and you put a deposit down on the 400, becasue it was cheap.

You are the one with myopic vision, here buddy - you say you couldn't give a rats ass about macro economics regarding the ea50 - well, that's silly - -IT REQUIRED A HUGE MARKET TO ACHIEVE THE LOW PRICE, and all we said was that is not going to happen. Not with THAT plane.

So, your operating economics, the one you bragged about based on Jetcomplete, jetincomplete and now a plane for which there are no replacement parts for many systems, at any cost... is considered affordable?

We all know, ncluding you... that this plane is very expensive all thigns considered - know why? Becasue the macroeconmics did not pan out.

Not even close.


Keep justiflying... heck, all you need to say really is... I LOVE my EA50, with all the warts, risk, and trouble its caused - -I LOVE HER.

This would be a respecable position.

fred said...

ATM :

yes , our Kenny (sorry i still cannot call you "Yes") would make a better face if just stating such love to his bird ...

at 2.4M$ a piece finished and all problems cured , the firm proposing it would last only a shorter time than EAC ... (if the story "you get me once..." works)

all in all , even if a Mustang or any other cost a lot more to buy (i disagree as well on the CPI thing : it is supposed to be inflation which is on all things and prevented easily if you want ....) at least it remain after a few flights ...

and then can be resale !

what about the Ea500 ?

at the time being (don't get me wrong , i would be happy if our Kenny could keep his toy flying in the future ) it is only a "discard after use" item !

airtaximan said...

I think Obama figured out one basic fact - he can get reelected by making most voters happier and that is about all he needs to do.

He's throwing pitched at ball games, commentating in the press box, looks like one of us...

The gy unerstands the rules of the game, and he's playing about as well as anyone I've seen lately.

stiffing the top 1%-2% of voters to make it appear as if things will get better for the bottom 60% or so, is not a bad move on his part.

I am not saying I like it.. just saying at the very root of his agenda, is remaining popular enough to get reelected.

Man, it does look like he's haing too much fun at it though.

;)

airtaximan said...

Yes, Ken's last post was pure unadulterated delusion.

Vern called this "die-hard"...

fred said...

Man, it does look like he's having too much fun at it though. ...

who wouldn't ?

almost unlimited power ...
a fat check at the end of month ...
a future in form of being paid a lot for writing his memories and a fat envelop to go to lecture ...
(greenspan gets half million for mumbling into some parties ...)

only one price to pay : keep the most electors happy !

(which can be extremely weird as he doesn't even need to do anything for them ... only to rip-off the 1 or 2% most hate !)

eclipse_deep_throat said...

Gadfly said,
Yesterday, I got another e-mail “job application” from an “ex” Eclipse employee . . . looking for something to put bread on his table . . . and I have nothing to offer, except my “good wishes”. He called, and even sent a “FAX” . . . ‘Sounds desperate. But, I showed no mercy, and turned him down flat!

Hmmm. Perhaps this explains why I can't find a job. LOL, no, I'm sure 99% of the reason - whether I like it or not - is a result of my own shortcomings...

Its also funny when people moan about Govt taxes or anything to improve or provide a 'social' need. I'm the first one chomping at the bit to see the cost-benefit analysis for all the State of NM and City of Abq incentives to EAC. It drives me nuts to see the Govt dangle the carrot of taxpayer dollars, essentially a form of Corporate Welfare, just to entice a company to locate in State A instead of State B. But the elusive goal of Full Employment seems to be important. I wonder why; perhaps all those great social engineers in Washington DC know what they are doing...

The line I heard one day is, "if you want to live like a Republican, you have to vote as a Democrat." As I get older, I firmly believe in that, in addition to the 'veil of ignorance.' If we are going to be engineering social safety nets, I challenge all of us to consider what we'd design if WE had to be the one's in need of those services. Despite my "pride" or self-image, thank God I finally had the nerve to apply for State/University Hospital coverage so I could see a doctor last week. That only cost me $15 ...and then another $21 to get 3 Rx. It is foolish to critize these benefits when you have no crystal ball as to if/when you - or someone in your family - will need these Govt medical services.

This may be way more information than anyone on this blog wants to read, but there are some people that really personalize the shit that happens to them in their life. It just seems so hopeless, not in terms of what I have went thru ...but when I obscess over the big picture of what the future lies for anyone who wants to build widgets of any kind. There are significant social costs when people lose their job, in terms of what it does to men, women, children, to FAMILIES. Gadfly, are you so cold to where that reality is lost on you? If I didn't have a great financee and other friends, I'm sure I'd be 6ft under by now. So Gadfly, next time someone trys to come to you for help, please consider what the 'human' thing to do is. Believe me, I'd rather accept a $10/hour job just to do *something* each day than to cash an unemployment check for doing nothing. And no matter how much your comments angered me, I do truly hope Universal Karma never has you in my position to experience this.

I suspect there are many, even here on this blog, that will play music as Rome burns. Is that the American thing to do? If you care to open you eyes, there are other subtle unintended consequences of recessions and layoffs. This is, or should be, more than just an academic conversation about micro or macro economics. Real people are affected by this. In the context of the aviation biz, MSNBC is saying that another 1000 people may be laid off by Boeing. If I was in a position to do something for those people, I would. Hopefully, the carnage will end soon... and hopefully the families affected by all the mistakes over the last 18 months will land on their feet.

e.d.t.

Beedriver said...

Re health care.

we already pay for everyone to get health care. if someone goes to the hospital he/she will get helped. who pays for it? the rest of us do. If we truly believed that: I as a person who has insurance and live and pay taxes do not pay for someone else's healthcare, than we should have the strong opinion that anyone that shows up at the hospital and does not have insurance should be left outside on the sidewalk to die. Therefor, since virtually all Americans believe we should help them, then the question is how do we most efficiently provide health care to everyone and also get everyone to pay into the pot somehow. This is what other countries do without insurance companies (I think) and countries like Germany do it on 2/3 the money with better average citizen health. Therefore we can learn something from them.

The other thing we will need to accept in this universal healthcare system is that healthcare will be rationed (yes lets call it what it is) we now can do so much for anyone to keep them alive if we do everything possible that the US will not ever be able to pay for anyone to get every thing they want. we will need to figure out what works best and play the odds on who gets what when. If someone has a low chance of a procedure helping them or we are already fixing up someone that is already dying we will need to help their pain but we will not be able to afford to do any extraordinary efforts to prolong a life with little possibility of ever being good again.

The universal health care system will need to be rationed.
Another thought: For my part I would rather have a bureaucrat deciding how much care I get than an insurance man. I dislike bureaucrats and what they do but having a guy decide on my health care that has the motivation not to give it to me because he gets more money if he says no is even worse.

baron95 said...

Shane Price said...
The really funny thing about the election of Barak Obama is that he told the American people exactly what he was going to 'do' i.e. raise taxes and cut spending.
========================
Shane for a smart guy, you seem to have a big problem with ACTUAL FACTS.

He HAS NOT raised taxes.

He HAS NOT cut spending.

Quite the contrary, spending went up by a huge factor and the deficit are predicted to reach $2T this fiscal year.

So I'm very cool and happy with it.

airtaximan said...

edt,

You seem like a pretty talented person. You seem to have more support than most, in your friends and family.

You should be doing something. You can probably create a job or two, invent or design something... or provide help to others charitably.

Do this now, while you are on the sidelines... I know its a depressing situation, but this is where opportunity knocks, and where some take the opportunity to make something from nothing, and provide their own luck.

There's very little else that feel better than staring adversity down, building something, and providing opportunity for someone else.

Something tells me you can do it...

airtaximan said...

health care...

yes, we all now cover health care for the helpless...

No way around this, except to have them die in the streets.

Has anyone here ever paid a hospital directly for something?

I was uninsured for 10 years, and it cost me next to nothing for healthcare. Much less just paying for what I needed, than insurance.

I had a surprise, and needed to go to the hospital - the eventual price I was offered to pay was around 60% of the intial price they quoted me thinking it was an insurance company paying.

Those who can afford the best health care will pay whatever they need to for it, wherever they can get it. Those who cannot, will take what they get.

Yes, it will be rationed, but this will not change anything for anybody.

The only question is, is... will the gov't getting more involved impact the cost in a positive or negative way?

My guess... negative.

WhyTech said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rich Lucibella said...

Obama?
Healthcare?

Sure am glad we've moved off from contentious discussions. What's next? Abortion Rights?

I'm reminded of Bill O'Reilly....a man who steadfastly stands up against all forms of Federal interference. Unless, of course, it's his pet project and someone else whose ox is being gored.

Rich

baron95 said...

E.D.T. said...If I didn't have a greatfinancee

----------------------------

Sorry to pick on a lighter note, but I thought that "slip" was awesome.

I too want to get a great financé ;) ;)

Where did you meet her?

baron95 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
baron95 said...

fred said...
in the past years , the middle-class was rinsed into more and more spending for less and less results
============================

Maybe in France or Germany, but certainly not in the US.

Health measured by life expectancy is at an all time high and getting higher.

Average size and quality of homes is at an all time high and getting higher.

Average number, quality, performance, safety of cars in people's garage is at an all time high and getting higher.

Number of computers, HD TVs, iPODs, clothes, any material goods in people's homes is at an all time high and getting higher.

Average education level is at an all time high and getting higher.

Despite the recent blip, vacations, mortgage rates, credit availability, home ownership, crime, etc, are all substantially better than even a generation ago.

What measurable basic RESULT for the middle class has been less and less in the US?

Get a grip Fred. You are coming off the hinges. Maybe it was the fact that the market surged another 3% today that got you unglued. How are those short positions holding up?

gadfly said...

e.d.t.

Evidently, you did not understand my sarcasm . . . I turned down the applicant because I have nothing left to offer. When we let our entire crew go, due to lack of income, we made sure that each employee had enough additional pay to provide a buffer, and find other work. My #2 son and I ("equal partners") have been barely keeping the doors open, with no employees for the past three years, and have taken nothing in salary for ourselves for most of that time . . . living from minimum income and savings, only (I live mostly on Social Security, although I work every day, and will turn 72 come October).

So please don't lecture on being fair, or "hard hearted". Again, today, I had another applicant . . . and directed him best I could to two other possible shops.

Place the blame for the economy on either party . . . whatever! The fact is that incentive to run a business and provide for everyone else's problems can't go on forever. And some of us have lost incentive to keep working fifty, sixty hours per week, to keep the economy afloat.

gadfly

(And for what it's worth, we provided 100% health care for our employees, and their families, without restriction . . . we had a loyalty among our employees second to none. We have nothing for which to be apologetic in work conditions and benefits.)

Black Tulip said...

Rich,

Actually we have been discussing abortion here for quite some time… last trimester… Eclipse Aviation.

baron95 said...

I thought the Eclips was a still birth BT.

The A700 was aborted in the first trimester.

The DiamondJet and CirrusJet took an intra-v RU486, but are hanging on.

baron95 said...

No_Skids said... Just one post, and Baron's already taking issue with what I've written. I feel right at home already.

===========================

Nothing personal. I'm paid by Google to increase post count by provoking all new comers.

And old timers too.

Welcome to the Blog.

We need more engineers here to steer the discussions back to fun stuff like design, materials, subsystems instead of politics and abortion.

Care to elaborate what aspect of the 787 design you consider to be unworkable?

Remember DESIGN - not execution of the design. ;)

eclipse_deep_throat said...

ATM said,
You should be doing something. You can probably create a job or two, invent or design something... or provide help to others charitably.

Point taken. I'm off to Phoenix tomorrow to look for a job. I'm busy trying to make sure I have the $$ to pay my mortgage next month, even if that means sucking up financial aid as a student at the local community college. But if I win the Powerball lottery, ha!, I'll be certain to put all my great ideas into motion. In the mean time, if someone offers me anything - even in Phx - I would lose less money by letting my Albuquerque house go into foreclosure or doing the "deed-in-lieu-of" transfer back to Countrywide/Bank of America. I've asked them for help too, but since I am current on my mortgage, nada!! So that is not a trigger I want to pull until I absolutely have to...

Gad,
I understand where you are coming from, but no, I didn't read any scarcasm in your post. I'm sure you are hurting too as a result of all the lies and broken promises. In my humble opinion, this is class warfare at its worst, but in reality, person X did things 5-10 years ago without realizing how it would affect A, B, and C today...

e.d.t.

gadfly said...

e.d.t.

Well, the sarcasm was real, and intended. The bottom line was that we had a great crew, and accomplished many great things. Maybe, had our basic intention been to "make a lot of money", we would have achieved that goal . . . but we had other fish to fry. And those other goals were achieved.

'Most everything I dreamed of doing as a "kid", I have seen come true, and far beyond . . . because of God's grace.

But, as far as making a fortune . . . When my ship came in, I was waiting at the train station.

gadfly

(Hey . . . 33 years and counting ain't too bad for a little "back street" company in Albuquerque, and maybe someday we'll feel free to relate some of our accomplishments . . . in aviation/aerospace and the medical/surgical world. The folks that we had to "let go" were a great support in some wonderful accomplishments, battling against the greatest of political and corporate forces.)

baron95 said...

Gad, with all due respect, you are the walking proof that without profits there are no jobs.

You had to lay off all your staff BECAUSE you were not making money.

If you are not managing for profits, you are managing for failure.

All the people here that decry "corporate profits" as greed, be careful what you wish for.

baron95 said...

And from the land of Shane, comes the quote of the day....

"Richard Branson is rather more talk than substance,"

That from the chairman of money losing and soon to be bankrupt British Airways (Mr. Broughton), about the Chairman of Virgin Atlantic when asked "How come Virgin just MADE $100M - as in profit".

Mr. Broughton, of course, blamed BA's problems, not on his mismanagement, but on "unprecedented difficult times".

What a moron!!! Blame "conditions". When presented with the competition making money "dismiss it as hot air".

Baron's Prediction: Virgin will buy BA as their share prices near zero and fire Broughton.

Oh, noh, wait, oooops, Labor is in charge - sorry, UK govmt will bail out BA and give the company to the unions - Obama will "lend assistance".

how quaint.

Dave said...

if the Govt doesn't spend the stimulus , the consumers will stop buying ... the depression will be worse ...
if the Govt spend the stimulus , they only add to deficits which will need to be repaid at some point (in increasing tax) so the consumers will stop buying , the depression will be worse ...


The stimulus is one of many things driving the debt and actually Obama has been criticized for not spending the stimulus. The deficit is going up despite the lack of stimulus spending not because of the stimulus spending. I thought Bush was bad for his profligate spending, but Obama is even more profligate and not only does Obama spend more, but he taxes more. Obama ran as a fiscal conservative against the profligate spending of Bush, now he makes Bush look small time in comparison.

Dave said...

If someone has a low chance of a procedure helping them or we are already fixing up someone that is already dying we will need to help their pain but we will not be able to afford to do any extraordinary efforts to prolong a life with little possibility of ever being good again.

This is amongst other reasons why healthcare reform seems like worse than the status quo. People under the status quo pay to get those treatments and now under reform you take people's treatments away. That looks very much like change, but not change for the better. Saying that the problem with healthcare is that it's just too good doesn't wash with me.

baron95 said...

Dave, don't worry. It is only debt.

Fred has this illusion that the only option for the US is to actually PAY the debt held by China, Russia, France, Germany, Japan, etc...

That is soooo 2 centuries ago.

The debt can be:

1 - Rolled (as in continuously refinanced)

2 - Monetized (as in we generate more electronic money to cover it)

3 - Selectively defaulted (as in, err China, Russia, you aided Iran, we will void all the treasury debt you hold).

4 - Many other variations of devaluing, selling the $250B in gold we hold, etc.

Now, all of these, have "some" adverse consequences for the US, but boy, they are making the other countries listed above piss in their pants with fear.

So, worry not. Life is good. All our debt is issued in our own currency and no one can force collection. The only thing they can do is whine (like Fred) or have nightmares (like Russia and China).

gadfly said...

baron

“You had to lay off all your staff BECAUSE you were not making money.”

Yes, you are correct, up to that point!

We could not fight folks like “Jack Welch” (force the downward price by 5% across the board, regardless of the increased cost of doing business . . . some of the common names on this blog can verify what I say), et al . . . and “under the table” deals based on ridiculous excuses like “ISO 9001", etc., that guarantee “mediocrity”, with “x” number of forms to prove it, that no improvements will be made.

(Funny anecdote here: We still get orders for a certain set of parts that the competition cannot make to ultra-high standards, regardless of "ISO" stuff. Hey, we invented the system. But what do we know!)

“If you are not managing for profits, you are managing for failure.”

At this statement, we part company! And I hope to make these next statements abundantly clear:

Success, for me, has never . . . shall I repeat it most clearly at the top of my lungs . . . Success has never been equated in terms of monetary profits. To make a living is important . . . to enjoy some extras is most pleasant, and I have had more than my share, enjoying things provided by others who could purchase everything you ever owned, plus my company, and barely shown a “dip” in their checking account . . . some show by their “wealth” and power that they are less than “content” (they continue to be most miserable, in their millions) . . . and I’ve had the privilege of knowing some others that could probably purchase the State of New Mexico, but whose treasures far exceed the entire “estate”.

Three family generations of inventions that made it to market (over sixty patents at last count, spanning a century) have contributed to farm/marine industries, to safe general/commercial/military aviation, to medical/surgical applications. (And some laser/optical stuff . . . “Star Wars”. . . but probably not of interest in the present discussion.) In the final tally, money took a back seat . . . but then I never expected a monetary profit. Money was always a “tool”, but never the final goal.
Looking back, . . . goal achieved, money be damned.

gadfly

(Then there is some other stuff, that was partly made possible by all this “fun and games”. And looking back, “all goals achieved”, plus many additional blessings. And your comment, “managing for failure” . . . If I were managing the program, that would be true, but long ago, I submitted “management” of my life to “Another”.)

No_Skids said...

B95 wrote-

Nothing personal. I'm paid by Google to increase post count by provoking all new comers.

And old timers too.


Anyone here on the blog care to claim that Google isn't getting their money's worth from B95?

B95's other question-

Care to elaborate what aspect of the 787 design you consider to be unworkable?

Remember DESIGN - not execution of the design. ;)


This is where an engineer really misses the freedom of not actually knowing the details-leaving them free to speculate wildly, as bloggers are wont to do.

People have already lost their jobs over this-including at least one of my acquaintance who "spoke truth to power" and said the architecture (and that means the design, not the execution of the design) would never work to the wrong person-an unfortunate flesh and blood example of the problem with Boeings communication these days.

Others have not lost their jobs that probably should have.

I'm reluctant to risk any possibility of adding to the carnage, so I'll keep it high level.

The flawed design will be replaced on the 787 at some point early in production (could be before production starts, the way things are going :^( ).

At a conceptual level, the lesson learned for an engineer is to go back to the thermal/vibration/stress surveys from prior programs and at least consider the possibility that similar heat/shock/vibe/loading will be present on the new aircraft.

The failure to do that got Boeing a system that is already obsolete-before they've even flown.

airsafetyman said...

"Point taken. I'm off to Phoenix tomorrow to look for a job."

How about Fort Worth, Texas, where the F-35 is being built by Lockheed and their suppliers? Cost of living there is low too, you can survive with a shared apartment or some arrangement until you get your housing situation straightened out. Good luck.

gadfly said...

Confessions of the “gadfly”:

Every day, before I start the coffee for the wife and myself, I check my email accounts (“three”), then “Astronomy Picture of the Day” (why not, you and I pay for this thing), my “spam filter”, and then, look in on the latest comments of all those who began commenting on “Eclipse” so long ago.

Yesterday, NASA provided a great picture . . . “Jupiter” with a few Galilean moons, our own “moon”, and a great foreground of clouds, from “Brittany” in France. Take a look . . . and enjoy a new view each day.

http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/lune-jupiter4_riou.jpg

The picture is worth saving, and I used it for the “screen background” on a couple of my computers, using the “center” selection, and didn’t need to change the pixel settings for “1920 x 1200". Yeh, I know, when I get “rich” next Tuesday, I’ll upgrade to a higher resolution monitor . . . but you do what you have to do!

gadfly

(It’s fun simply saying things as they are . . . with nineteen grand-kids, I attempt to keep my point of view at the lowest possible level, as in, at "floor level", eyeball to eyeball, so I can understand their complex thinking. Sometimes, I have to call in an expert translator, a "sibling", to tell me what is being said. (Of course, the "arthritis" takes a hit now and then, but the price is worth it.) As a Bible teacher by the name of “McGee” once said, “Keep the cookies on the bottom shelf, so the kiddies can reach them.” I like that!)

(Important note: Concerning the NASA image, click on the image, and the highest resolution image will download. Then, save it, and use it for your screen background. Great stuff . . . enjoy!)

Shane Price said...

The FlightAware numbers are in...

Ken, don't read the last line below.

And nobody else is to REMIND Ken not to read the last line, otherwise he'll be upset.

OK, with that final warning to protect Ken's mental state, here we go:-

General aviation single engine and multi-engine piston activity increased by 3.3% in June 2009 compared to May 2009, turboprop activity increased by 2.8% in June compared to May, and jet activity decreased by 2.0% in June compared to May. The aircraft type with the largest significant gain in GA traffic for the month of June was the Aero Commander 500 with a gain of 36.2%, contrasted by the aircraft type with the biggest significant drop in traffic, which was the Gulfstream Aerospace Gulfstream V with a loss of 14.1%.

Year over year, the aircraft type with the largest significant gain in traffic for June was the Cessna 400 with an increase of 33.9%, but the biggest drop in traffic was found with the Eclipse 500 with a decrease of 54.8%.


Now, promise me, one last time, that no one will upset Ken by drawing his attention to that last line....

54.8%, year on year decline.

Is this a record?

Shane

bill e. goat said...

Hi Shane,
OUCH!
I'm glad Ken didn't read the line above this one!!
.)

Ken Meyer said...

Interesting numbers, but they don't blow me away. I did 3 hops today; I've got another tomorrow, and 3 the following day. Not a single one of those flights will be counted by Flightaware. They would have been last year, but this year my N-number is blocked. So are the N-numbers of a growing number of owners.

There are 28 DayJet planes that aren't flying this year that were last year. And some owners grounded their aircraft when the company ceased operations.

So there are a lot of reasons for the 2008 vs 2009 Flightaware flight numbers to drop. But I think a much more compelling set of datapoints concerns the total flights of the fleet monthly since Chapter 7 was declared:

March...931 flights
April...913 flights
May...1025 flights
June...973 flights

That's right--more flights were made by Eclipse aircraft in June than in March. Total mileage flown was higher too. This idea that the Eclipse 500 fleet is exponentially rotting away following Chapter 7 is just wrong.

And a number that ought to get guys like AT: Charter operations dropped 56.9% from June 2008 to June 2009. Charters actually dropped more than the Eclipse 500 fleet did! Jet activity as a whole dropped 21.2% from June 2008 to June 2009. Rough times for many.

Ken

Black Tulip said...

Gadfly,

When I visited your shop we commiserated about our both having been suppliers to General Electric, and having seen the scorched earth policies of Jack Welch. “If you are unwilling to accept my demand for a price reduction, then I’ll find another vendor.” He required price reductions simply to boost G.E. profits (a good thing), without any increase in quantity ordered or any reason to believe the vendor had lower labor or material costs (a bad thing). Welch put companies out of business.

The list of victims was long… but not infinite, especially for specialized components and sub-systems. G.E. found it harder to place some work around the time Jeff Immelt took over. Their reputation still precedes them.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Ken,
OooKay- I feel a little guilty now
>)

Soooo, as penitence, I'll refer to Eyes_Wide_Shut post on the last thread:

"The most utilized EA50 that I know of is operated by Labquest. They love the plane and typically fly 4 to 7 missions an evening with it. The plane is currently in maintenance since they have reached a 2000 cycle rebuild requirement of the flap actuators. Yes, 2000 missions flown. That is the only reason the plane is currently down. In about a 60 day period from the end March to the beginning May they put 260 flights on the plane with no issues. That high reliability, and high cycle usage."

Well, THAT'S pretty IMPESSIVE !
Gotta admit, I was stunned.

I looked 'em up on FlightAware (use LBQ for a fleet search); over a dozen airplanes in the air.

FAA says 22 airplanes in their fleet:
13 BE-58s (Beech Barons !!)
4 Cessna 310s
3 PC-12s
1 TBM-700
1 EA-500

Wow- busy guys.
Quest Diagnostics looks like some kind of medical testing service, among other things. Probably flying specimens around between various locations (guess their customers have ALREADY had the piss scared out of 'em :)

(Sorry, that was to easy to pass up:)

Maybe Big Ed's flying lemon (er, limo :) service really COULD have succeeded, with that kind of reliability !

(And considering all that talk about putting a potty in the EA-500, just think of the possible business opportunities ! :)
--------------------------------

But seriously (!?!), thanks to Eyes_Wide_Shut for the impressive stats!

Black Tulip said...

“…but this year my N-number is blocked.”

Ken,

Nice to have a rebuttal at your fingertips but your quote says it all.

You go on to say, “So are the N-numbers of a growing number of owners,”

How come? None of the aircraft I fly have tail numbers blocked on FlightAware.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Ken,
Thanks for sharing the fleet hours (as logged by Flightaware- some more unlogged hours out there too, I'm sure).

"That's right--more flights were made by Eclipse aircraft in June than in March"

?? Less chance of icing for the non-FIKI planes ??

(As I understand it -barely- none have been upgraded yet? I was modestly impressed Eclipse had a final configuration ironed out- hopefully they'll get the factory and support centers going again soon to impliment the fixes.

1000-ish hours per month, for probably ?150? or so flying plane's ain't bad- that would come out to 80 hours per year per airplane- don't know what I'd increase that number by for the flights not in Flightaware- maybe double (?) to 160 per year? What with folks being a little conservative in "exercising" their airplanes due to parts and support worries, that's pleasantly encouraging.

Ken Meyer said...

BT asked, "How come? None of the aircraft I fly have tail numbers blocked on FlightAware."

I can't speak for other owners, but I'll tell you why *I* had my N-number blocked: it was 'cause of naysayers here and elsewhere that started taking a little too personal interest in my flying habits and the flying habits of other Eclipse 500 owners.

Did you know some guy from the old blog actually turned in an Eclipse pilot to the FAA for a possible flight violation based on his Flightaware track? I didn't believe it, but it happened. Can somebody really be that full of hate that they'd turn in a pilot that they don't even know because they hated the company?

It's nasty stuff like that that caused me to block my N-number.

Ken

EclipsePilotOMSIV said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Black Tulip said...

Ken,

I understand your explanation and don’t envy the situation. Operating an aircraft that climbs and descends through the freezing level on every flight, and does so without known ice approval must be a challenge - and potentially draw unwanted attention.

Phil Bell said...

The D-bag word will NOT be tolerated.

I insist everyone use decent language.

The guiding principle, for both language and tone, is to post that which you would be proud to have those you know (family and friends) read.

And proud to have those you don't know read. One's comments present the blog to strangers who might be, and should be, judging the forum for civility and taste.

Dave said...

I can't speak for other owners, but I'll tell you why *I* had my N-number blocked: it was 'cause of naysayers here and elsewhere that started taking a little too personal interest in my flying habits

So you want it both ways - you want to come here to talk about your personal flying habits, but you don't want to offer up proof that what you are saying is actually true.

Did you know some guy from the old blog actually turned in an Eclipse pilot to the FAA for a possible flight violation based on his Flightaware track? I didn't believe it, but it happened. Can somebody really be that full of hate that they'd turn in a pilot that they don't even know because they hated the company?

If what you say is true, why would you want people using the Eclipse 500 in unapproved ways? I don't see how you cheerleading for unapproved uses helps anyone.

Ken Meyer said...

Dave, you make no sense.

You want *me* to offer up--with millimeter specificity no less--what I do with my plane when *you* won't even tell us what your name is. Good grief. Can anyone create a bigger double-standard than you just did?

As for the idea that I "want people using the Eclipse 500 in unapproved ways," all I can say is you appear to be inventing a new line of reasoning that I never brought up.

Ken

Phil Bell said...

WHEW !!,
After reading Richard Aboulafia's excellent newsletter, my brain was as exercised as my facial smile muscles!

To help with the brain recovery (?!?), I have compiled a complimentary compendium of useful references (especially for those of us who normally save our brains for emergency use only: "what's for lunch", etc.):

PART ONE of two:
"the Battle of Jutland"
"the largest naval battle of World War I and the only full-scale clash of battleships in that war. It was only the second major fleet action between steel battleships in any war, following the Battle of Tsushima in 1905, but was also the last. It is also considered to be the largest naval battle in history...It was fought on 31 May – 1 June 1916...

"The week after Le Bourget"
The Paris Air Show, for us colonials! I didn't hear much news about his year's show (15-21 June, 2009)- rather subdued I suppose, given the global economy...:)

"problems with the wing-to-body join structure"
(Nice Aviation Week summary of 787 issues).

"equivalent of the i-Pod"
"iPod is a brand of portable media players designed and marketed by Apple Inc. and launched on October 23, 2001" (Wow!- Sure doesn't seem like it was that long ago!)

"exact opposite of the A380"
(As I recall, the A380 flight test program went okay, but there were lots of delays with production; 1 delivered in 2007, 12 in 2008, 14 planned for 2009- versus Boeing talking about two production lines to meet demand- maybe a smokescreen for trying to move production to South Carolina though).

"rollout two years ago (on 7-8-07)"
(6 minute amateur video- fun- even aspiring musicians can be aviation enthusiasts! ...although perhaps not accomplished critics...am I tooting our own horn? :)

Phil Bell said...

Part TWO of two:

"Twelve years ago McDonnell Douglas effectively used Boeing’s money to buy Boeing...these events in my May 2003 and December 2003 letters".
(For more fun reading, please see Richard Aboulafia's archives; These are great reading !)

"The Vought 787 work acquisition"
(Nice Bloomberg article)

"Truth and Reconciliation Commission"

"The nickel and dimed MD-11 mediocrity"
(My, and some say WE are critical! Here's the Wikipedia article...first time I've ever used the term "the Wikipedia" rather than "a Wikipedia"...)

"the useless MD JSF competitor"
(The X-32 is the ugliest airplane I have ever seen a picture of- and I'm told it's even uglier in real life)

"the out-of-control cost overruns of the C-17"
(GAO report, 1996)

"the scandalous MD/GD A-12 carrier stealth attack plane"

"The A-12 is the most haunting extreme outlier: a mere Potemkin Village plane"

as Churchill said of Admiral Jellicoe,
"commander of the British fleet in World War One, he is the only man who can lose the war in an afternoon".

Phil Bell said...

As originally being a "dry-lander", I was heretofore more familiar with the worlds largest tank battle (Kursk than the world's largest battleship fight (Jutland).

What, you might ask, is the world's largest air battle ? Eclipse advocates versus detractors, of course !!

(Especially if we consider the hot-air battle, with exceptional weapons and tactics used by both sides! :)

Thanks again to Mr. Aboulafia for expanding our minds (and smiles)- and for those who invest in accordance with his sage analysis, perhaps expanding our wallets a bit as well !

baron95 said...

Since we are down to grade school level... I say Ken's posse just whipped Shane's posses a#@ and Dave's posse in pure desperation said Ken's dog is ugly.

Come on guys. Shane - nice piece of data - thanks - next time make sure the bases are covered before attempting to claim game, set, match.

I'm with Ken - monthly trends on flights tell "more" of the story.

Dave, come on, dude, you are coming unhinged like Fred. People here have wet dreams about nailing Ken, his family (wife), his plane, the E5c anything. The fact that he is virtually the ONLY EA50 still putting up with the abuse and providing valuable info from "the other side" does not require him to disclose any more or any less than what he chooses too. And the fact that he chooses to disclose ONLY information that is pro-EA50 is his prerogative. He already stated on the previous blogs that he WILL NOT, nor should he, help make the case against Eclipse.

BEG - nice theory on icing.

Gad - Don't confuse managing a business for profit with managing your life for profit. It is clear from your answer that you were and are incapable of separating the two. Most can and do.

No_Skids - geez man - and you think Boeing has a problem with straight talk. Either you know of no such unworkable design on the 787, or you are the most inarticulate engineer I know. Were you talking in code, or some ancient union tongue? What is the issue?

I know of three specific 787 design fixes, none of which is an unworkable design. Nor do I know anyone that knows of an unworkable design issue. I know of one guy that "fears" there may be one lurking, but can't put his finger on it.

Bubba said...

The Cirrus owner's site is reporting a growing shortage of parts. They are now reporting long waits for Number 2 Alternators. Delivery times are reported to be 3 weeks. MCUs are being reported to be unavailable for weeks and possibly months. Also reports that Cirrus service centers are not being paid on a timely basis. Speculation exists that cash flow problems are more severe than many realized.

Tough times to be certain!

baron95 said...

All is OK Bubba - they are trying to make it up in volume ;)

That is the Vern strategy. Instead of diverting resources to supporting existing planes in the field, put all resources on building new planes so you can convert more deposits, etc.

I always thought that Cirrus was going to be done in, the same way Cessna and Piper were done in in the early 80s.

What was that you ask?

Well, the availability of scores of planes on the used market selling for a fraction of the price of new.

My take is that once Cirrus G3 Perspective (G1000-equipped planes) start hitting the used market in good number, then Cirrus is done in.

Second hand market is a BITCH unless you have incredible innovation pace on your products.

baron95 said...

Likewise, it is not the Phenom 100 that will kill the Mustang (or make it suffer).

It will be the scores of used C510s hitting the market.

If there is a $2.4M 400 hrs, debugged C510 in the market, why the heck would you pay $3.0M to Cessna for one?

Now, both Cirrus and Cessna know this. See how they wait till they have a year or so left of backlog in the order book then *BOOM* launch a G2, G3 or CJ1, CJ1+.

100lbs here, FIKI there, SVS here, Proline 21 there.

Sadly for Cirrus, to grow beyond the current G3 Perspective will require serious $$$. They are done with low hanging fruit, middle hanging fruit (G1000, FIKI), now what?

baron95 said...

Phil, back to the 787, I'm really not impressed with RA's analysis.

The REAL story is the behavior of Boeing Management team.

On 07-08-07 at the roll out, every one involved ABSOLUTELY KNEW the plane was NO WHERE ready for first flight in 6 weeks. Yet Mike Blair told everyone a flat out LIE. That is right flat out LIE - "The aircraft will be structurally complete at rollout"

The plane had to be disassembled, some structures - YES MAIN STRUCTURES - were less than 20% complete. That is well known and documented.

The lies continued through ALL the other announced delays.

On June 15 at the Paris Air Show, Scott Carson told all: "We remain absolutely committed to our forecast that it will fly in the second quarter of this year... that means within the next two weeks roughly...The technical issues are largely all behind us."

And then, one week later he is FORCED TO FESS UP that, not only it will not fly, he doesn't even know when he will have the revised schedule with a date for when it should fly.

THAT is the story that needs analysis.

Why is this guy (and Blair, and Shanahan) still employed by BCA?

What is the board doing?

To ME, that is proof positive that Boeing, as a company is still in denial.

ZA997 has had an additional 2 years of static testing and model calibration time, because of the delay. And only now they find a stress problem on a major structure? And the models were not even close to predicting it? I want to know how many FEA programs they used? If they used just one, did they do spot checks with a second one? Did they use A basis allowables (99% probability, 90% confidence) as they prob do on metal planes - if so why?

When you have that level of VISIBLE incompetence - BCA President saying all is well one week at a trade show, then I have no idea when all will be well the next week - I can GUARANTEE you the level of internal (not visible) incompetence is orders of magnitude higher.

Where is RA's analysis of that? That is the story. Not reciting the MD culture, blah, blah, blah. That is BS.

Scott, Pat and Mike, simply did not do their jobs. They don't want to receive or pass bad news. They are not managing. They are watching.

Why are they still there?

baron95 said...

Sorry for the rant - the gentleman's name is Bair, not Blair as in the Blair witch's project ;)

baron95 said...

Hey, DI, BEG - this ONE time - no, it was not the Union's direct fault ;)

It was management - yeah!!!

fred said...

Monsieur Gadfly :

please stop spreading so much of your wisdom among us ...

i could wake-up one day believing i've got a brain ! :-)

definitely , your thoughts are worth being saved somewhere ...

i'm not doing any kind of toadying , just express my sentiment that experience of life may be in itself worth of respect and full of principles ...!

fred said...

dave :

i understand very well your point !

but the today-situation didn't occur overnight ...

a bit like a teacher of anything starting to give a good mark when the work of pupills is at best average ...

it might be easier to the teacher (less worries , less explanations , less hassle from parents ...) but in the long run , it only do bad to those pupils !

i wrote it before , i wouldn't like to be in b.o. skin ...

this is probably what baron doesn't get (i am not sure being blinded is of any help ...) how to correct a situation being inheritance of a (few?) decade(s) of overspending ?

what if the new teacher (who replaced the one gone in retirement ...) say suddenly to the parents "your kids aren't stupid ... the previous colleague should have been replaced many years ago , instead of pushing a day after an other ..."

the parents may be upset , they may consider that the teacher is undersaying the kids are stupid ...

not at all ! the system failed , that's all !

if the parents were the ones choosing the teacher , they share responsibility ( i agree it may be hard to swallow )

what is to be done now ?

get real , face challenges, NEVER rely on the fact that it has been this way for so long , what the point in changing ?

this is where the analogy with pupils can be good :

now they have to keep on learning and at same time brush on earlier stuff that has been neglected ...

double work , double hard ...

this is where Mr Gad's preaching is good " nothing ever new under the sun "

confirmed scientifically by Lavoisier : nothing new only transformation of older state , the only one thing never changing = No action without reaction !!


Ps: 250B$ in gold ? what a joke ... at today pace , it doesn't even cover 3 months of deficits ...!

it is not the past debts i am worried about ( you would be surprised that few of the biggest holders , more or less consider it as already lost ... some parts or all of it )

it is the actual capacity to make new ones , which am worried about ...

in an economy based at 70% (70 to 76% depending of observer) on consumer's spending , if the jobs sinking keep the pace where are they going to find to keep on spending ?

if they do not spend = jobs will sink even more > making spending even more difficult ...!

for many years , the biggest problem was the lack of savings ... now the biggest problem might be savings ...

weird situation , but no action without reaction !!!

fred said...

Edt :

Its also funny when people moan about Govt taxes or anything to improve or provide a 'social' need. ...

yes , i agree !

i do believe that USA NEED some kind of social safety net over the next (few) year(s) ...

you see , from far the ones bragging about tax raise seems to be the same ones who thought perfectly normal to spend Billions before ... (quite normal , it was giving them the impression of getting so wealthy ...)

now the clock has turned around , they discover that whatwas a gain yesterday might be an expense today ...

tough life !

this is where your comment on being a republican may take all his sens !

Kathy said...

Someone mentioned a glass windshield?!?! Um ok. How many 500s fly straight through all speeds with zero roll trim? Mr Meyer may have input for that.

Ken Meyer said...

"How many 500s fly straight through all speeds with zero roll trim? Mr Meyer may have input for that."

Nope; I don't have the answer to that. Probably you know that every EA-500 is run up to Vmo in test flight and must be trimmable for hands-off flight. Some required a small Gurney tab on one wing to accomplish that. The roll trim design does not incorporate an aerodynamic surface (i.e. trim tab) as it does with some aircraft. Rather, it uses spring bias to one side or the other which tends to limit its effectiveness at high speeds.

My Eclipse didn't get (or need) a Gurney tab, but it requires a pretty good amount of roll trim at Vmo in order to fly the plane hands-off. When I first took delivery, I wondered if that would be an issue, but it turns out when hand-flying, you just subconsciously flick the cooley-hat from time to time as the speed changes. It becomes "automatic" like the pitch trim is for most pilots.

Ken

Dave said...

You want *me* to offer up--with millimeter specificity no less--what I do with my plane when *you*

Where did I ask you to talk about your alleged three hop flight? Oh that's right - you brought it up on your own, but because you have it blocked on Flightaware, you can't prove what you voluntarilly brought up - having it both ways.

As for the idea that I "want people using the Eclipse 500 in unapproved ways," all I can say is you appear to be inventing a new line of reasoning that I never brought up.

You're the one who brought up the alleged unapproved use saying that preventing unapproved use was "hate."

Dave said...

Dave, come on, dude, you are coming unhinged like Fred

I'm sorry that you associate verifiable proof with being unhinged. Pointing out that Ken is making claims that he has made willfully unverfiable is a matter of logic.

Ken Meyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deep Blue said...

B95 said:

"BUT, circa 1998-2000 Vern/Eclipse AND ONLY VERN/ECLIPSE, put together the complete package for the personal jet owner/pilot"

That's a very good point. EAC could be looked at (and criticized) across three (maybe more) components: 1. the aircraft; 2. production; 3. after-market.

Your point (and facts) should remind readers that the E500 was indeed a new GA jet and it was organized with GA/owner-pilot support; it was pretty damn smart if it worked.

If you go talk to Cessna or Embraer, their sales force is utterly focused on "corporations" of some sort; not individual GA pilots (yes, the HNW owner, but he has a management contract, piloting, etc).

Who today is putting anything as comprehensive together for a jet owner-pilot as EAC tried to do? I can't see any.

Phil:

interesting points on RA's 787 and other analysis; his criticisms are indeed funny but true; after reading him, one might come to the conclusion that the U.S. aerospace sector is rather abysmally managed with an embarrasing track record.

And what about our space program? Just about dead. And space tourism? Virgin Galactic, et al? Next generation high speed flight? Sub-orbital hypersonic? Intelligent "flying cars" with intelligent automated ATC?

It's easy to see why this blog quickly goes into the political department as the U.S. is focused on strictly social issues rather than fundamental science, R&D and its aerospace components.

Rather than "put a man on the moon" it's "put everyone on health care."

Black Tulip said...

How 'bout combining these goals... Specialized healthcare, say elective surgery, will be conducted at a lunar facility.

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

BT,

Would that 'lunar elective surgery' include the installation of a wisdom tooth?

If so, I reserve the right to nominate the following for early treatment:-

1. Vern Raburn. On second thoughts, scrub that, he's beyond hope...

1(a). Ken Meyer. Clearly in need of help, and just possible to 'save'.

2. The Board of Directors at Boeing. I know it's a big job, but someone's got to do it, before they blow the entire company on the 787 disaster.

3. Sarah Palin. Somebody's got to run for the Republicans in 2012, and they clearly won't miss her in Alaska....

Shane

Deep Blue said...

SP said:

"The Board of Directors at Boeing. I know it's a big job, but someone's got to do it, before they blow the entire company on the 787 disaster."

Interesting to ponder Aboulafia's comments in relation to entrepreneurialism.
Boeing is an odd animal; it clearly comes from an entrepreneurial culture, but that seems a distant memory. Now it's a classic bureaucracy.

Its management teams tend to be old, or at least old-line and very entrenched; i.e. they stick around too long; low turnover at executive level; and the firm is milked, like GM was, by a very sleepy BOD. Boeing is a big sleepy company with a great brand, spoiled management and rather awkward risk taking.

They are also on the "consultant" drug and way too many unnacountable advisers roaming the halls with a lot of naive ideas being peddled to management. First it's "outsource" now it's "insource." Nice gig: break it up, then try and put it back together. Like GM, how much money do execs and the BOD have at risk? That is, how much of their own money, is on the table? Probably not a cent; moreover, probably not a cent of personal risk for failure.

If ever there was a "raider" opportunity, this is it. And it isn't only stemming from the 787 program.

Where is Kirk K., Carl I.?

gadfly said...

fred

Thank you for your kind words, but there is a better place to begin:

Psa 111:10 La crainte de l'Éternel est le commencement de la sagesse; tous ceux qui pratiquent ses préceptes auront une bonne intelligence. Sa louange demeure à perpétuité.

Psa 111:10 (110:10) Начало мудрости--страх Господень; разум верный у всех, исполняющих [заповеди Его]. Хвала Ему пребудет вовек.


And here is a summary of what I was attempting to say about motivation, within a business . . . money is a tool, but should not be an “end” in itself:

1Ti 6:10 car c'est une racine de toutes sortes de maux que l'amour de l'argent: ce que quelques-uns ayant ambitionné, ils se sont égarés de la foi et se sont transpercés eux-mêmes de beaucoup de douleurs.

1Ti 6:10 ибо корень всех зол есть сребролюбие, которому предавшись, некоторые уклонились от веры и сами себя подвергли многим скорбям.

(No, I can neither understand French nor Russian, . . . but must depend on “copy and paste” in “Word Perfect”, using an excellent “free” program from www.e-sword.net.)

gadfly

airtaximan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
baron95 said...

DB said... come to the conclusion that the U.S. aerospace sector is rather abysmally managed with an embarrasing track record.
--------------------------

I think that is going way too far. The 787 program is being poorly managed. Managed by wishful thinking rather than hard choices and firm decisions. Stop.

Eclipse's program was poorly managed/executed. Stop.

B777, F15E, B777F, Meridian, Mustang, etc were all very well executed.

In due time, with proper management, the B787 program ALSO can be brought back on track and represent a quantum leap in materials, systems (electric subsystems), assembly cost, outsourced supply chain etc.

When some of these programs fail or hit snags, we always have to be careful not to learn the wrong answer.

What if we had learned that pressurized aluminum jet flying was the wrong answer because of the Comet's failure?

gadfly said...

Over the years, I’ve learned much by asking stupid questions. Back in school, it brought on some ridicule, even by the teachers. But there almost always were other students that wanted to ask the same questions, but didn’t want to appear ignorant. ‘Having said that, I’ll re-ask a question from a few years ago, that was never answered (to my knowledge).

If both engines are “out”, and (say) the little bird (E500) is down to a breathable altitude . . . 15,000 feet or so . . . what are the prospects of bringing the thing down to a safe dead-stick landing (assuming all this is in sight of a nice long flat strip, and the pilot keeps that strip in sight at all times)?

In other words, was empirical testing ever performed, and results published on the little beast for such conditions?

gadfly

(Ignorant, but willing to learn!)

No_Skids said...

B95 Wrote-

"inarticulate engineer"

Isn't that close to being redundant?

I have to agree with B95 and others that the 787 7/8/07 rollout was close to fraudulent. A number of us noticed that as the aircraft turned on the ramp that day you could clearly see the passenger windows through the cockpit windows-in other words, an empty shell.

Could someone here even compare it to the Eclipse first flight with the little engine that couldn't? Naww . . you're all much too kind for that.

As for the details of the 787 design flaw (which will be corrected in due time)-I just won't go there-sorry. Some day, when it's just a distant memory, rather than a fire under some poor unfortunate soul.

Now, if we were talking about the F-22, or some other airplane where everyone who was gonna get fired already has . . that's another story.

gadfly said...

baron

Woven into the fabric of your comments seems to be a recognition that most answers are based not on absolute “best choices”, but a combination of appearances, serendipity, politics, and making the most of the combined results . . . combined with good (or maybe "clever") “PR” with those that control the purse-strings.

Is there an “ideal system” of development/production? . . . Not as long as humans are in charge. But those are the tools with which we work.

The best government is a benevolent all-wise, all-powerful dictator. The best design system is a all-wise “dictator”. In some instances, we have come “close” . . . Kelly Johnson comes to mind as one of many examples (Howard Hughes was the antithesis). But all dictators eventually die or simply get weary of battling the yapping jackals, and others, who are more skilled in politics, but less capable in the needed skills, rush in to take their place. And so, we see the second, or third generations of corporations, and designs . . . displaying “entropy” in once great companies. Granted, some recover . . . but usually it’s a brief recovery.

No great suggestions, here . . . merely an observation.

gadfly

KnotMPH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
baron95 said...

gadfly said...
I’ll re-ask a question from a few years ago, that was never answered (to my knowledge).

If both engines are “out”, and (say) the little bird (E500) is down to a breathable altitude . . . 15,000 feet or so . . . what are the prospects of bringing the thing down to a safe dead-stick landing (assuming all this is in sight of a nice long flat strip, and the pilot keeps that strip in sight at all times)?

=========================

Why is this a hypothetical. IIRC, the EA500 has already demonstrated in real life that it can be successfully dead stick landed.

Isn't that what happened at Midway?

What is the point? The EA500, with its reasonably low stall speeds, good glide performance is probably one of the better twins to have a double flame out with.

baron95 said...

No_Skids said...
"inarticulate engineer"
===============
That was just provocation bait to get you to spill the beans ;)

=====================
As for the details of the 787 design flaw (which will be corrected in due time)-I just won't go there-sorry.
===============
I guess it didn't work. ;)

Jury still out - you haven't really provided any insight that would come from close to the action.

Want to talk about F22? Sure - one of my all time fav planes - I have no contacts there, so, I'll take your lead.

baron95 said...

KnotMPH,

I;m sorry but this romanticized version of things being better in the past are just that - romanticism.

There is virtually no corporation, micro, small, large that is not incredibly more efficient, productive, cleaner, fairer to employees, transparent to investors, today than one or two generations ago.

If you transplanted one present day organization, say American Airlines or Ford or GE or Honeywell or Walmart back in time, they'd so truly decimate the competition, it would not even be funny.

The days of leisure pace at companies, enjoying the fruits of oligopolistic competition are gone.

Today, any company, even those at the top, that blinks for a quarter or two can be run out of the market by the competition.

And that IS healthy.

Kathy said...

Thank you for the trim explanation Mr Meyer. I was curious about that because of things that were overheard back in the day. I can see how it would become automatic. I still wonder about the glass windows that someone mentioned. I can't recall any GA or corporate Jet using glass.

gadfly said...

KnotMPH

Careful now . . . you’re showing signs of having a certain habit that is not well accepted in today’s political climate . . . you’re using your brain to “think” and “reason”. Be prepared to be ridiculed . . . but having once been “attacked”, the second and third time is almost “fun”. After while, you might even do something I used to do (and even my wife was embarrassed). We’d attend one of those silly “PTA” meetings, with some liberal speaker promoting “sex education” to the fifth graders (or whatever), and I would stand up, make a statement, and for the rest of the evening watch and listen to the two sides battle it out. It was much more entertaining than anything I’ve ever seen on TV . . . even the “Closer” ranks a distant second place.

Ah yes, my friend, you have stepped into the rarified atmosphere of “tweaking the beaks” of the elite. Don’t despair . . . simply “sit back” and enjoy the turmoil which you have initiated.

(Not that it’s worth anything now, in the thinking of most, but back in the late 1960's, my wife and I were all packed up and about to leave for Jos, Nigeria . . . passports, “shots”, etc., etc., . . . to maintain a fleet of five aircraft for an evangelical mission organization. My wife’s health “failed”, and we had to unpack our nine 55 gallon steel drums, which contained virtually everything we owned, and return to being a “machinist/tool-maker/designer”, instead of heading into what turned out to be a major war, between the “Hausa” tribe, and the “Ibo” . . . and all that sort of thing. Just think what you would have lost . . . the “gadfly” would never have existed. And of course, we would have ended with only two sons, without the blessings of two daughters, four sons and daughters in law, and nineteen grand-kids . . . and a whole string of other blessings, etc., etc..)

Life, in the hands of the right “One”, is a blast. You just can’t make this stuff up. It just gets better and better, with the best yet to come.

Much of the “spam” that is blocked, is for “look-a-like” Rolex watches . . . made west of Shanghai? And for what? To impress someone? (If I had my “druthers”, I’d have a “Patek Philippe” . . . not some cheap thing with barnacles around a “look-a-like” oyster.) You see, things of high quality do not need a “PR” representative to “prove” how wonderful the thing is. The owner knows quality, and is able to enjoy “same”, without further proof by others.

gadfly

(More to follow!)

gadfly said...

At first “read”, I was ready to take on “baron’ . . . and I’ll continue to repeat the same question until it is properly answered: Was there ever proper/thorough/controlled empirical tests to show ability of the little jet, to make a “dead stick landing” from “altitude”, in normal “real life” conditions. (By the way, “Midway” is about 600 feet above sea level, and hardly “at altitude” . . . I did my own flight training not thirty miles northwest of Midway . . . and anything with wings will “fly” at that altitude.) I wait with bated breath for an answer, although I strongly suspect that the answer will be in the negative (‘Just as there was never, and I repeat, “Never”, a single empirical wind-tunnel test of the little beast, to prove thrust/drag/power designs adequate, long before the “Williams” jet engine test over Albuquerque. (For the record: It is not baron’s responsibility to answer the question, and those that should have answered it are probably all long gone . . . but I’ll continue to ask, as maybe someone will come forth with the answer.)

The “fluke” accidental emergency of two desperate pilots, fighting for their lives, and their two passengers, is hardly a controlled empirical test, regardless of contrary comments (which I’ll do my best to ignore, for the moment).

The rest of “baron’s” comments are worthy of further contemplation . . . he has some excellent points, and worthy of a “hearing”.

And long ago, I advised Ken to report on what he knows . . . and he would be all right. Me thinks that Ken has a tendency to “fudge” on what he knows (Come on folks, give the man a break). I’m reminded of the man that jumped off the Empire State Building and was “un-hurt” . . . all the way down. Ken, beware of your convictions . . . they may be true, temporarily!

gadfly

(Somehow, I detect that the “gadly” is showing a mean streak . . . sorry . . . I confess, I was rather beginning to enjoy it!)

Shane Price said...

Baron,

You seem to think that Midway was a 'walk in the park'.

Read what the pilot said, in the only press interview he gave. It's all there, at our old home.

Still think the E500 is a 'doddle to deadstick'?

I don't, and I'm pretty sure Capt. Chuck Nealy has a similar opinion.

What do you think, after re-reading Karen's piece?

Shane

KnotMPH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gadfly said...

And Shane, the obvious thing that our friend seems to have overlooked is that the "incident" at Midway was a far cry from a "dead stick" landing.

gadfly

To laugh? to cry! . . . what to do!

My first flight into Midway was possibly in 1956 on the way to Submarine School, Groton, Connecticut, by way of Hartford . . . back then, Midway was more than adequate with a "DC-6b"(?) (I probably slept through the flight.) Funny thing . . . I'll bet that it was about as fast as going by jet into Boston, renting a car, and driving up "95" to a customer, etc.

baron95 said...

Gad, you make no sense. It is very common for jets to idle or minimum power required to maintain pressurization at the top of the descent, and then descend at Mmo, Vmo, or 250kts.

So, in essence, descent and controlability with idle power from altitude is done on most flights.

What is the point?

Is that the latest DEFECT you came up with. The EA-500 has not demonstrated idle descent to landing?

For crying out loud man.

And Shane - I never said it was a walk in the park, I said that it was demonstrated when the EA50 had a dual rollback to idle and landed on a small runway over a congested area.

Anyway - this one is so far off the "sanity" check, that I should not have bothered to answer.

Gad, be careful asking the "teacher" that question. Instead of laughing at you like in grade school, they may just lock you up in a psych yard ;) ;)

baron95 said...

KnotMPH said...Did Chrysler truly discover they no longer needed 25% of their work force between the second and third quarter of one business cycle?

=======================

Duh!!!! Their sales went down by 40%. You don't think a 25% force reduction is appropriate?

They have been over staffed for 3 decades and are always behind the curve, right sizing.

And guess what. They are STILL grossly overstaffed. ML just predicted that Chrysler market share will go down by almost half, to 6% in the next 4 years. Even Obama won't be able to finance that level of overstaffing.

And fear not, those "losing" the jobs will be more productively employed or self-employed soon.

It does no one any good to have 5 guys build a car in 1 hour in Detroit, when 2 can do it in 20 minutes in South Carolina. No one. Not even the 5 Detroit guys.

gadfly said...

baron

For whatever it’s worth, you have made your point . . . and revealed much! We’ll leave it at that.

gadfly

Ken Meyer said...

Kathy--I believe the Mustang uses a glass windshield (oddly enough, most of the CJs don't use glass). I'm sure there are other GA jets that use glass.

I'm not sure where you were going with that--is glass vs acrylic an issue somehow?

Gad--perhaps we all misunderstood your point. It sounded like you were wondering if jet aircraft in general, and the Eclipse in particular, can be flown from altitude with thrust off and successfully make a landing.

I don't know if Eclipse ever ran a series of "dead-stick" landings, but everybody that flies a jet knows that you frequently go to idle thrust and descend (that of course is not ZERO thrust, but pretty close to it). And Baron gave you a good example of where the tough part would be--judging the landing just right without the capability of adding power if you needed it.

Maybe if you phrased the question a little differently we would understand it better?

Ken

baron95 said...

Bubba said... The Cirrus owner's site is reporting a growing shortage of parts.
============================
Well, it was announced today that API is taking over all the parts inventory, sales, distribution and logistics for Cirrus.

(Me thinks - Cirrus got cash upfront for inventory and contract, in an effort to raise cash)

P.S. The contract covers the SJ50 as well as the SR line.

So there you have - that is part of the reason why parts were no flowing ;)

gadfly said...

Ken

Yes, I know that the question may be too "technical" for some, but I will try to make it understandable.

It would seem that the question is as simple as it gets: Did "Eclipse" (or one of their agents) conduct "dead stick landing tests", either with engines at "idle", or completely "shut down". And if so, what were the results?

That's a two parter . . . "Yes" or "No", plus a simple explanation, should the answer to "Part One" happen to be "Yes".

Unless you are a politician, answering the question should be simple.

gadfly

(Should the question be above a person's "pay grade", they should simply decline to answer the question. But then, I suspect I already know the answer, even if provided by a qualified "authority" from within the Eclipse technical/engineering staff.)

(And you, Ken, of all people should be curious as to the results . . . such knowledge may in fact be of extreme importance one of these days. But then again, maybe not!)

baron95 said...

And another candidate to replace the dreadful crash pictures on the Blog's home page.

"Nasty Bug Problem in Detroit"

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

Gadfly

Thanks for the courtesy warning.

Unfortunately, I'm used to the petulant barbs of multi-syllabic non-diction spewed from the mouths of those with a singular simplistic answer to all. (that was rather Spiro Agnewish).

We (American industry) didn't get this way over night and won't change any faster.

One advantage to growing up in a relatively rural part of the country was the inherent maintenance of humility and humanity. At a high school reunion if someone got too swell headed about themselves; there was someone available to remind them (publicly) how they got the nickname "Stinky" in fourth grade.

During harvest season, those people willing to work for a few weeks at low wages were the difference between success and failure. They were never looked down upon or disrespected. Typically, they were high school students looking for some income and work experience. Silly as it may seem, a person could learn the importance of teamwork, process, value adding activity and commerce.

gadfly said...

KnotMPH

You preach it, and I'll help turn the pages.

Thanks for the encouragement . . . it's fun to help others feel good about themselves, or their hard-won work . . . and often takes so little effort.

gadfly

(It takes a long time to build something "worthwhile", but a single mean comment can destroy a great work in a moment.)

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

"the tough part would be--judging the landing just right without the capability of adding power if you needed it. "

It was routine to fly ILS approaches to minimums engine out in PC-12 (sim) training. Scenario typically involved an engine failure somewhere between FL100 anf FL300; objective was to select an airport withing gliding range, fly the approach, and land. Descent rate clean on the PC-12 is about 800 fpm (steeper than a typical 3 deg ILS) so it took careful planning but was very doable. WHen the instructor was having a bad day, he would crank the vis down to zero. It was this that confirmed the value of a glider rating I had obtained many years previous. Dont see any reason one could not do this in the EA50 or any other acft once the power off glide characteristics are known. Space shuttle makes EVERY landing this way.

Black Tulip said...

Whytech,

I concur. For several years running, after completing the required maneuvers in the Simcom Citation II simulator, we conducted the following optional exercise. Night departure out of JFK headed east over Long Island. At five to seven thousand feet the instructor causes a dual flameout. No joy on relight. The aircraft glides quite nicely with a very manageable rate of sink. You arrive back at the key point rather easily, too high - looking down either runway 31L or 31R. It takes three or so 360s to lose altitude. Then it gets interesting… with no engine rotation there is no hydraulic pressure. It is a no-flap, no-spoiler, emergency brake landing with manual blowdown of the gear when landing is assured. The old-fashioned forward slip comes in handy to lose energy on short final. So far we’ve always made it.

baron95 said...

KnotMPH said ... There seems (by your numbers) ample time, resource and technology to design a domestic process which is efficient and nimble
--------------------

KnotMPH, everyone knew what needed to be done for years. The problem was the UAW, and the management that was afraid to take them on.

While the Detroit 3 still had a large enough share of the market, they were content with the slow decay of profits, market share, product investment and UAW employment.

But when it hit the tipping point with the transplants in the US South, foreign competition, etc.

They lost control. So Ford mortgage everything and had a change because of Mullaly. GM had no chance without $60B in bailout. Chrysler has NO CHANCE - they are too far gone.

baron95 said...

KnotMPH said ...We (American industry) didn't get this way over night and won't change any faster.

============================

What exactly is wrong with our industry compared to how they used to be?!!!????

Our steel mills, Alcoa, Boeing, LokheedMartin, Cessna, the auto assembly plants in the South, IBM, Dell, Intel, Raytheon, etc, etc, etc, are incredibly more competitive and at the very top in design, manufacturing and innovation in their industries.

What exactly are you moaning about? The fact that Intel can produce 1B chips/month on an $4B state-of-the-art plant with 200 employees, instead of 20,000 union workers? The fact that after bankruptcy the steel mills in America now employ 1/10th the workforce and are cost/productivity leaders?

The fact that Ford, now unshackled from some of the UAW uncompetitive tax, may now actually increase share and pass both Toyota and GM?

The fact that try as hard as they do, union drives at IBM, DELL, Intel, HP, Microsoft, etc never get any votes?

Dude, what is happening to American industry is awesome. It is becoming ever more productive and wining in the market place.

Perhaps you simply miss the times when workers had a lot of slack off time on their hands.

If you do, you can always apply for a job at a 100% unionized civil government sector. The NEA will make sure you work only 8 months out of the year, retire after 20 years, have all your "grievances" filed, etc. The only thing you won't do, is actually have to educate a single child. You can, as of kindness of your heart, but you are not required to. Once you get tenured, you are golden. Cool, huh?

No_Skids said...

At the risk of offending the BlogMaster, and getting all my posts deleted (which B95 may not mind ;-)

Phil Bell wrote-

The useless MD JSF competitor
(The X-32 is the ugliest airplane I have ever seen a picture of-and I'm told it's even uglier in real life).


Phil, the sins of MD are many (the A-12 comes quickly to mind) but don't blame them for the X-32. MD was booted out of the JSF competition in the semi-final round in the Mid 90's, and the X-32 was a Boeing design (prior to the "MD buying Boeing with their own money" that started this thread).

I can vouch for that last part though-the X-32 really was uglier in person. I spent some time at Palmdale airport in the summer of 2003. The poor X-32, having already lost the flyoff, sat forlornly at the end of a taxi way.

Never a raving beauty to start with, it was a hideous mess-literally falling apart on the ramp-pieces of it lay on the ground around the plane. The tires were deflated.

It was the worst looking billion dollars (Boeings fee for the flyoff) I've ever seen.

bill e. goat said...

Hoo-ray !!
FRED is back!!

And just in time too, as economic and political "disruption" explodes on the nascent blog!

Tales of rampant capitalism, and Reagan-think cloud the minds of men, while B.E.G. ducts the fray- waiting, wishing, hoping for, the French Foreign Legion (or at least the Moroccan constabulary- snappy uniforms!) to show up and support the right-thinking, left-leaning, American-centrist, point of view!

(Welcome back ! :)
--------------------------------
Hmmm....We haven't heard much about Peg lately...Fred??

bill e. goat said...

Gadfly,
Я не имею никакую идею чем вы говорите о ,настолько здесь зайчик с блинчиком на it' головка s

gadfly said...

That's a "Flap-Jack-Rabbit"!

Nyet?

bill e. goat said...

Hi Kathy,

I believe "transparencies" is the term in use for "things you look through". Probably reflecting (well, not if they're transparent...) the nature of variable material for construction.

"PPG’s long history of supplying flight deck windows with long service life and lightweight structural designs provides minimum operational costs to operators and optimum aircraft design. PPG pioneered the supply of chemically tempered Herculite® II glass for the aviation industry. Our extensive experience in supplying structurally-loaded cockpit windows is unique in the industry. With the addition of Sierracin/Sylmar expertise, PPG now has the ability to supply lightweight composite cockpit window systems."
PPG Aerospace

And,
"Sierracin/Sylmar is now able to offer a glass-faced version of the main windshield. Glass-faced acrylic windshields combine the
toughness and chemical resistance properties of glass with the
weight-saving benefits of plastic. Sierracin/Sylmar introduced the
glass-faced acrylic windshield. It has been used successfully on many
military, general-aviation and large-transport aircraft programs for nearly 40 years.
Sierracin/Sylmar manufactures all flight-deck windows for Challenger 600 Series aircraft, simplifying replacement with availability
from a single source (passenger-cabin windows supplied for
the 600, 601 and 604 aircraft only). Three options for replacing
Challenger 600 Series cockpit windows afford flexibility to meet
operators’ specific needs: new, rebuild or exchange."

typ- Challenger 605
(Well, maybe not so typical, but at least an example...)

Beats me- I've seen a lot of windshields with PPG, and I always figured they were laminates, with glass on the outside for scratch resistance, and plastics inside for toughness- sort of like automobile windshields, I have supposed). I think REALLY fast military airplanes that might have a supersonic birdstrikes (I TOLD you those ducks were worthy adversaries!) and I suppose other "ballistics" damage- and low-end bug bashers (and duck duckers) use plastics, but it's fairly common for biz jets to use glass/plastic laminates.

That said, I have no idea what Eclipse uses- anyone?

(?? I don't think we ever resolved the question of whether EAC had done a bird strike test ??)

bill e. goat said...

Gad- you flip me out!!
:)

bill e. goat said...

As life goes by, and one contemplates their lifetime contributions and accomplishments...it is sobering to contemplate that a bunny with a pancake on it's head will be remembered by infinitely more people than I (sigh :)

And stand a better chance of being enshrined on Mt. Rushmore...

Some minor consolation:
Where's My Hassenfeffer!!
(?Eclipse Executive Dining Room, circa Wedge?)

Kathy said...

Thanks BEG. Ken someone earlier posted something about installing glass transparencies is the EA500. That's all I was wondering about. Thanks.

fred said...

Billy :

And just in time too, as economic and political "disruption" explodes on the nascent blog!

well ... sorry about that ! ;-)

you see , i have difficulties to stand peoples who show "it has to be perfect , it comes from here !"

when i was in Israel , when switching "sides" (from Jews to Muslims) i had many problems from "some" who were asking often "from which side i was " ...

with a lot of humility and some caution , most i met could finally understand that it was already difficult enough for me to be on my own side ... not to bother with some unneeded stuff as that !

(off-course , i was not doing like our B. , running everywhere shouting to be the one who could understand anything and everything ...!)

why is that related to Aviation ?

more than you can think !

Look at Boeing problems , or at what was EAC fiasco ...

isn't it looking exactly like Microsoft blunders ?

or in a simpler way : "when marketing/stocks guys take the last word over tech guys ..."

why is that ?

simple : when you get good at something , the best way to waste your achievement = try to be better without consideration for what are the risks ...

translated into vern's language as " we'll all get rich when the skies will be darkened ..."

or in microsoft : each time they released a "bad" product the guys from marketing get sacked , each time Mic.. launched a good product tech's guys got forgotten and lead to the blinding putting marketing back in power ...

i am not from any political side ; there is good and "less good" from anything and anywhere
( Hitler wasn't only the monster that he became , the guy was a f*** lunatic but did a "few" things that could be considered as good like "autobahn" and putting back to work peoples who had only hope to beg for bread before ...nothing is 100% good or 100% bad ! even EA500 ...at least it has made dream a few and has shown the limits of money over technical aspects , you can spend all you want = if it is flawed , it is flawed !if you do not correct the aim , it remain the same )

being from one side or an other(without questions) is probably one of the best way to find yourself in a "doggy-bag" at the mercy of a politic !

Shane Price said...

Fred,

Baron seems to be missing the point that Capt. Neely made. Without a co pilot, the combination of circumstances at Midway would have been difficult, if not impossible to overcome. For those of you who are not familiar with the details the incident played out (roughly) as follows:-

An E500 on final experienced a sudden wind 'event', losing altitude rapidly. The PIC pushed the throttles forward, stabilized the approach and touched down. Instead of slowing (the throttles were now at idle) they accelerated down the runway, heavy braking failing to slow the aircraft.

The PIC (Chuck Neely) had no option other than to take off again. Chuck quickly realized that the engines were both at maximum thrust, so, after several attempts to correct the problem, he shut one of them down. In a further twist, the remaining engine 'decided' to roll back to idle, and then refused to obey throttle inputs.

Nothing in the Flight Manuals covered this scenario, so he used his extensive experience (6,000+ hrs) to 'dead stick' an approach and landing.

Happily, all four occupants were uninjured and the damage to the aircraft was limited to blown tires.

After an investigation, the E500 was discovered to have a dodgy throttle quadrant design, linked to faulty control logic.

EAC made every effort to shut the people concerned up. The first I heard of it was a 'blanket ban' from within the factory on any mention of the affair. Captain Zoom involved himself in this effort, to his eternal shame. He knew Vern was in the middle of a final, desperate effort to flog off the 'excess' DayJet positions to people dumb enough to pay for them.

So, prodded (hard) by the NTSB, the FAA stepped in and slapped an 'emergency AD' on the E500.

Vern was very bitter about this in his public comments. He claimed they had everything under control, the issue was a minor one and everything was 'rosy in the garden'.

We all know now that EAC was far from a tranquil retreat during this time. In fact, Vern was only a short time from getting fired and the company was burning cash at an unprecidented rate.

Which, for a business that went through more than $2 billion in 10 years, is saying something...

Would you want to 'deadstick' a jet with proven dodgy control logic and a throttle that's so fragile less than 50lbs of force caused the Midway event?

Clearly, Baron does.

He's probably using the same 'logic' to denigrate everything about the UAW.

However, I have a different opinion. Like everything in life, neither the UAW or the E500 are all bad.

You just have to know how to handle them, which is what Chuck Neely demonstrated.

The failure(s) to bring the E500 to market and sell it at profit, or of Chrysler/GM to respond to global challenges in their home market are not the fault of the workers or their unions.

They are MANAGEMENT failures.

The guys (and girls) bolting bits together in America are not the source of competitive 'challenges' and loss of profitability.

It's the Board of Directors and senior managers who've blown it.

Remember, the 'troops' only follow orders and try to stay alive. It's the Generals who win (or lose) battles.

Shane

fred said...

Monsieur Shane ...

yes , i think that blinding yourself (in the case of B.) is of no help at at all !

like what was done by Midway event pilot : it show beyond any doubt that EA500 is the kind of toy NOT to be put in any hands ...

if the pilot wouldn't have had such a experience , death would have scored an other 4 !

which is probably the most scary thing i can see (from far , i agree ...) in this aft .

what is the exact amount of untold and/or unexplained glitch in the plane ?

does the fact of (may be) saving a few hundreds thousand worth putting life at risk ?

i have no problems with peoples taking risks , on condition they fully know and understand the consequences of their own action ...

luckily enough , EA500 didn't darken the skies , so no pilot only thinking "computerized logic" would save them from the event their lack of experience could put them into ...

which is exactly what the EA500 was sold for :
"so easy to fly ..."

WhyTech said...

"So far we’ve always made it."

OK - here's a possibly greater challenge: double engine failure on departure at the minimum altitude where a turn back to the runway is a reasonable choice (about 800 AGL in the PC-12) in low IMC conditions (200 & 1/2). Things happen fast - requires positve actions with no delay to reach the runway. Taught me to have electronic guidance back to the runway threshold set up on every departure (became part of the checklist). Ken, if your much vaunted EA50 ATP training does not include such scenarios, you are being short changed. Even if the probability of such scenarios is low, learning to deal with the more extreme situations enhances proficiency and confidence (no problem for you, as we know) for less demanding emergencies.

fred said...

and you are perfectly right on the management !

most of times , failures can be attributed to lack of leadership (Mgt problem), bad decisions (mgt problem),wrong spending (Mgt problem)

even when ground-grunts are hanging around with NO-stamina at all , it can be imputed to bad atmosphere or conditions they were working in , and Mgnt had no hears to listen to or eyes to see it clearly ...!

work is always a synergy process :

never heard of any brilliant general winning anything with demoralized soldiers ...

or fearless soldiers winning with a worthless general at their heads !

that is why i always thought any firm with only ONE excellent thing and the rest being crap is worth no more than the shadow of a dime !

Deep Blue said...

B95 said:

"Where is RA's analysis of that? That is the story. Not reciting the MD culture, blah, blah, blah. That is BS."

True enough. But RA has to walk the line between criticism and getting paid (by the industry).

As for the Boeing BODs you cite, have you looked at the Board composition? Individuals from, let's see, TIAA-CREF, an energy utility, a former White House consultant, the oil sector, media, medical devices and Mayor Daily's brother.

Throw in the government DOD projects and you have additional bureaucracy weighing the company down.

As for investors, they're even more removed, passive and technically uninformed.

So where, exactly, would any change come from?

It is remarkable therefore, that a hostile takeover is not in an advanced stage of development.

As I stated earlier, Boeing is just being milked, like GM was, by hangers-on. GM's lead director, Fischer (from Kodak), was central to the company's demise.

Observers (all of us) tend to underestimate just how risk averse and frozen a senior management team and Board can get, and just how long they'll let things deteriorate before any bold actions is taken (by someone else who is forced to). It usually comes down to that.

Ken Meyer said...

Whytech wrote, "double engine failure on departure at the minimum altitude where a turn back to the runway is a reasonable choice (about 800 AGL in the PC-12)...Ken, if your much vaunted EA50 ATP training does not include such scenarios, you are being short changed.

Gosh, Whytech, I had no idea your PC-12 could suffer a *dual* engine failure on takeoff. It must be a very special machine :)

My ATP training wasn't at Eclipse. I got the ATP in a CJ. Very little time was spent on dual engine failure at takeoff (and none on dual engine failure at takeoff leading to a turn back toward the airport). Dual engine failure at takeoff and the no-engine ILS are really single-engine aircraft scenarios. I imagine multiengine instructors don't emphasize either of them because the time can be spent better on events that aren't so unlikely.

That said...

Gad--Eclipse generated a dual engine failure checklist item for "dead-stick" flight from altitude. They tested and published the best-glide speed at various weights and have documented the expected downrange distance for altitude (about 2 nm per thousand feet of altitude).

Naturally, they would also have been required to comply with any dual powerplant failure testing requirements of Part 23 (are there any?).

Ken

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

Shane wrote, "After an investigation, the E500 was discovered to have a dodgy throttle quadrant design, linked to faulty control logic."

By oversimplifying, you've misled the readers, Shane.

In fact what happened was that the Midway pilot pushed on the throttle quadrant with a LOT of force--44.5 pounds, it turns out.

Well, I was curious how easy or hard it might be to push on the throttle with 44.5 pounds. Visualize a suitcase filled to international cabin-class baggage limit (44 lbs). Now visualize holding it up with one hand (waiter style). Now imagine pushing with that same high level of force on your delicate throttles.

That's what he did. I think he pushed mighty hard.

To test that hypothesis, I enlisted the aid of a pilot volunteer and set up a test "throttle" for the volunteer to push against as hard as possible:

Ken's throttle test

She hit 35 lbs.

Now, it turns out that FAR 23 didn't specify how much force the throttle quadrant is supposed to accept. So, the FAA developed a *new* requirement and published it as an AD. EA-500 throttle quadrants have to withstand 43.8 lbs of force (oddly enough, still lower than what the NTSB said the Midway pilot exerted).

Eclipse developed a test for throttle quadrants to verify what they could withstand:

Eclipse throttle test

And a simple fix for any (there were a few) that couldn't withstand 43.8 lbs.

Most important, they developed a checklist item so that if you ever get yourself into this problem by slamming the throttles too hard, you don't do exactly the wrong thing as occurred at Midway (because the pilot was never taught the right thing and the QRH didn't contain it either).

Ken

Beedriver said...

A very good book that puts a frame work about the creation, growth and death of an organization is "corporate lifecycles" by Ichak Adizes

It is one of the few books I have read that is actually worth the number of pages. most business books can be reduced to less than 10% of the words without losing any meaning. It does an excellent job of building a frame work for the birth, growth, and death of a company and also most importantly provides ways to figure out in what stage an organization is in and what possibly to do about it. Boeing is deep in aristocracy and possibly in early bureaucracy which leads eventually into death.

Ken Meyer said...

Gadfly wrote, "there was never, and I repeat, “Never”, a single empirical wind-tunnel test of the little beast, to prove thrust/drag/power designs adequate, long before the “Williams” jet engine test over Albuquerque."

Sure there was. Courtesy of another Eclipse 500 pilot:

Wind Tunnel Testing Announcement

Ken

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

Throw in the government DOD projects and you have additional bureaucracy weighing the company down.

As for investors, they're even more removed, passive and technically uninformed.
...

absolutely !

what can be bad for a firm ?

a passive management !

what can be worse ?

a passive management trying to protect his nice little way of life ...

what is the worst ?

same as above + lack of technical clue of the subject !

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

kenny

sorry , if Monsieur Shane is misleading , i think you are as well ...

44Lbs of luggage ?

it might size about nothing !

2 bars of gold are over 56 Lbs while they stand without too much effort into my hand , not to talk about Uranium which would be size even less (yes carrying U in fpj would have you shot down ... probably ;-) )

what about stress conditions ?

not everybody is supposed to be dead-calm enough or cold-blooded to handle such a device with such due precaution when life is at stake ...

fred said...

same for Wind-Tunnel ...

year 2000 ...

engines = Ej22

Real plane ? no , a mock-up (was it before or after wingtips ?)

airtaximan said...

from the wind tunnel announcement, which specifically stated it was designed to confirm their CFD - for stability and control.... I remember the image of the scale model, and it looked nothing like the plane they eventually flew for first flight, and even less like the plane they delivered to customers. Those in the know, believed it was a stunt, and added very little value. read Vern's staement in thet PR, and you'll see what they used the windtunnel for...

anyhow... my favorite;

"Aircraft cost is projected to be $775,000 (year 2000 dollars) when commercial delivery begins in 2003"

Remember folks: there are those who believed EAC and those who didn't... those who read between the lines and those who gobble it all up...

Just an observation.

Orville said...

Flightaware just started publishing interesting statistics - and the Eclipse 500 won the award for "largest loss (of utilization) year-to-year".

Shane Price said...

Ken,

Regardless of how much force Chuck Neely applied, the FACT is he did it.

The throttle sent an 'out of range' signal to the software, designed by EAC. In turn, Avio interacted with the FADEC to a) leave the engines at max power when the throttles were pulled back to idle for landing and b) later rolled back the 'other' engine to idle when Chuck shut down.

So yes, I gave a 'rough' outline, having pointed readers to the full report by Karen at our old home.

Now, try this experiment:-

1. Blindfold your 'volunteer', lock her in a small closet, expose her to repeated shocks (loud noises, foul smells etc) for a few minutes to get the adrenalin going.

2. Shout to her there's a fire in the room, and she has to get out NOW.

3. Measure how hard she hits the door to escape.

Bet she manages more that 35lbs....

Shane

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

Orville,

I posted a comment with that FlightAware data two days ago.

Sadly, despite my plea's, Ken got to hear about it.

The 'Faithful' doctrinal view it that lots (and lots and lots) of E500 owners have blocked their tails from FlightAware.

If you believed Ken, there are probably MORE E500's flying now than ever.

In fact, it's only a matter of time before the skies are truly darkened by vast fleets of them.

Pretty soon they will be parked wingtip to wingtip on every ramp in the world. They'll fill up every field (that's enough hyperbolae, ed)

Sorry about that Orville, I got carried away.

Such is the influence of our Ken. Long may he continue to enjoy his E500.

Shane

gadfly said...

Nice try, Ken,

But the University of Washington wind tunnel (the one used) has a maximum velocity of 295 feet per second (200 mph), and the test was conducted on a “cleaned up” scale model (22%, I believe). Data was extrapolated from the results, and hardly “empirical”. It has been argued that the “extrapolated data” was extremely accurate. If that were the case, the test flight using the Williams engines becomes almost criminal, and at best a total misrepresentation to the “investors” and public, in general.

It is almost impossible to extrapolate data from a smoothed skin scale model, at less than half the claimed speed (and 1/4 of the dynamic loads) to “real life”, and come up with much more than a “rough” approximation of real conditions, especially considering what most manufacturers already know about working with sheet-metal, and unskilled labor, etc.

Of course, the actual history of the little bird has graphically, and painfully, re-enforced the above statements.

However, a close friend and successful designer of major aircraft devices (as in “Airborne Laser” project) pointed out the “fraud” of claiming “good data” from the wind-tunnel/model testing, years before the actual “first flight”. In fact, it was his statements that got my initial interest in watching events unfold at the little bird factory, by the Rio Grande.

gadfly

(For your information: http://www.uwal.org/ )

Ken Meyer said...

Shane wrote, "Regardless of how much force Chuck Neely applied, the FACT is he did it."

So your idea is that an airplane must be designed to withstand *any* force a pilot applies? How about a passenger?

Why limit it to force? Perhaps airplanes should withstand anything *stupid* a pilot does?

It seems to me you're inventing new standards that do not exist in the regulations in order to make your point.

Ken

Ken Meyer said...

Shane wrote, "If you believed Ken, there are probably MORE E500's flying now than ever."

I see in Rich Lucibella's absence, you've decided to pick up a role he played: publishing as "fact" things that aren't. I did not write anything like the statement you attributed to me. If your point is valid, it will stand on its own without you having to prevaricate to support it.

And Gad said, "there was never an empirical wind tunnel test." When I showed him there was, his pitch appears to have changed to, "well it wasn't as good as I think it should have been." Whatever.

Between Shane, Rich, Gad and AT, this blog could really use a fact checker.

Ken

gadfly said...

Ken

Please get your quotes correct, and check a dictionary for "empirical". If there were true "empirical" tests conducted in a wind tunnel or out in the real world, it would have been "full scale" with an actual aircraft, at full velocity.

But maybe you can conduct some carefully controlled "empirical" tests, including "dead stick landings" with your own aircraft. Your fellow Eclipse owners would greatly value the data obtained.

gadfly

Orville said...

Do you truly think that blocking a flight for public viewing on Flightaware - automatically exempts that flight's data from being recorded in Flighaware's statistical database? The folks at FA aren't that stupid - that they'd publish statistics without noting that caveat if it were the case.

Your data is in the FAA data that Flightaware uses. Flightaware is simply prevent public users from viewing it, once the 'owner' pays the blocking fee. The data is all there.

Ken Meyer said...

Orville--read about the BARR program. Depending upon the blocking method selected, Flightaware doesn't even *get* the data (and therefore cannot analyze and report it).

Gad--

Empirical: based on observation and experiment: based on or characterized by observation and experiment instead of theory

Are you saying it is not empirical wind testing any time a scale model is employed? I've never heard that claim before.

Ken

No_Skids said...

Hmmm . . . the title of this Blog-"Aviation Critic and Enthusiast". Let's parse that.

Aviation?

Yes, that gets mentioned . . sometimes . . perhaps not often enough.

Critic?

Uh . . . yeah, got that covered.

Enthusiast?

Seems like poor Ken is left to mostly carry that mantle alone, for which he is mercilessly beaten.

I’ll venture a post that covers both Critic and Enthusiast sides, and would encourage anyone so inclined to chip in.

One of the most interesting aircraft of the last 20 years is the F-22.

To populate the "critic" part is easy-anyone can attack the cost.

And to find some technical grounds for a “critic” is a bit more challenging, but there's plenty out there.

Because the F-22's designers chose to use software for everything (even putting gear down, or opening the canopy) there was a pilot "caught in the cockpit" during flight test (bad, but somewhat understandable, you're in development and test) and years later, in a production aircraft, another pilot trapped for the better part of a day (the fire department finally had to cut him out). Not so good.

The story of the Nav system “crashing” when the F-22 first crossed the international dateline (they had to turn around and follow their tanker back to Hawaii) is a big “oops”.

But here’s another F-22 tale that you may not have heard.

For a number of years, aircraft have had a method for detecting hydroplaning and making sure that the brakes can't be applied (brakes+hydroplaning=bad outcome). A common way to do this is to compare the wheel angular velocity to the INS velocity.

The folks who developed the F-22 did this, but made two errors-

First, Hydroplaning during taxi is . . . well, unless you land in the ocean . . . so turn off Hydroplaning detection at low speeds.

Second, INS velocity isn't that accurate at really low speeds. Which sort of makes sense-at 30 knots, you're not really flying anyway, so who cares how accurate it is?

The combination of these two factors led to near disaster one day at Edwards while an F-22 was taxiing on the ramp. The INS read high, the wheels read low, bye bye brakes.

Revert to manual? Nope, the Failure Modes and Effects Criticality Analysis (FMECA) said you didn't need a manual switch.

Park Brake? No, software won't let you do that while you're moving, silly.

The pilot, Jon Beesley, managed to narrowly avoid a ground collision with a C-130, shut the thing down, and (eventually) got her stopped. The event became known as "Captain Beesley's wild ride".

But no tears for Jon-he went to to become the chief test pilot for the JSF (and is a great guy).

That's the critic part. Here's the enthusiast part.

Out on the flight line at Edwards, circa 2004. Testing down day. If you've got somebody with a flight line drivers license, one option is to go see the air show (which happened a lot at Edwards-on a good day you'd see an F-117, F-22, F-18, and even (back in the 90's) an occasional SR-71).

One of the passengers was a crusty old F-15 crew chief. There was a lot of "my airplane can beat up your airplane" smack that occasionally happens here on the blog. "His" F-15's could out fly anything in the sky.

Well, out comes an F-22 on the taxi way (serial #002, IIRC). Soon the F-22's on a Mil Power (no afterburner) takeoff roll, and along comes the safety chase plane (an F-15) about 150 feet over us. The F-22 rotates a few thousand feet down the runway, and then rotates some more, and a little more. Pretty soon it's screaming away from us in a near vertical climb out. The F-15 has gone to full afterburner . . and he can't keep up.

I looked over at our proud F-15 chief. His lower lip was trembling, and he muttered softly "That's . . just . . not . . fair."

If you just judge an airplane by what it's made to do-fly-the F-22 is a great plane.

Of course, some think the F-23 might have been even better-but that's a story for another day.

baron95 said...

Wow Fred!!! You managed to get Jews, Muslims, Hitler, in a single post.

And I got, my only ever deleted post, by suggesting you pitch your ideas about the uselessness of military aviation to the IDF, that you claim to have served on.

(other than that, I'm staying far clear of your post)

Go figure!!!!

baron95 said...

Deep Blue said... Observers (all of us) tend to underestimate just how risk averse and frozen a senior management team and Board can get, and just how long they'll let things deteriorate before any bold actions is taken
======================
Excellent Post DB. Right on on board's inertia and on RA and other analysts being incapable of calling it like it is - else no one will pay for their analysis.

Here is a twist.... I think another benefit of this recession is that boards, investors and management are becoming more assertive. If you look at the speed with which corporate America responded to this recession compared to previous ones, it is night and day. CEOs and boards are being booted fast - and if anything, there has been an over reaction in cutting cost-basis.

baron95 said...

Why the heck are we rehashing Midway?

Let it go Shane.

There was a condition, not properly accounted for in the software, triggered by an out of range signal from TQ, triggered by unusual but not improbable force being applied, triggered by a over excited pilot reacting to low level sudden sink. I.E. A chain of events.

Pilot successfully dead stick a plane with a <70kts stall speed into a runway - great job.

Problem was researched, addressed, pilots have procedures to interrupt the chain, by avoiding excessive force, by following a new checklist if they exceed it, by having TQ inspected and changed as needed.

END

No need to rehash it again.

What Gadfly, in his strong desire to find WEIRD faults with the EA50 asked about, is "what would happen if the plane had to descend with no power - implying it would be uncontrollable or whatever".

I, stupidly enough, responded, by saying that, not only is it SOP to descend jets at idle (or close to) power, but, an EA50 had been dead stick landed.

Stupid me, trying to respond to a STUPID, WEIRD and BASELESS question. Therefore causing Share to go on his rehashing tirade.

MEA CULPA. I SHOULD BE BANNED FROM THE BLOG FOR 2 MONTHS JUST FOR THAT.

fred said...

the uselessness of military aviation to the IDF ...

not exactly the terms you used , then ...

but it is you after all !

read again what i wrote , i didn't wish anyone to be killed or whatever ...

nor i pretend that the only way to be respected is to have the biggest guns ...

contrary to you who believe (or seems to believe , i never understood if you say things to get reactions or to make your point or to convince mainly yourself ) that driving in few country of Europe enable you to understand thousands years of culture and hundreds years of habit ...

still keep blinded by your faith , it creates opportunities for others ... !

Deep Blue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deep Blue said...

No skids:

Interesting and informative points; however, as far as "doing what it was designed to do" the F-22 might be considered by many to be antiquated as to mission: dogfighting, WWII style. What it was designed to do was "designed" + 50 years ago and its actual project spec/design was started over 10 years ago.

Those days (air-to-air fighting) are just about over and rarely if ever, decisive anyway, except to minor engagements. F-16s in Iraq were/are used as effective bombers; now smart bombs and UAV's are taking over. I am not referring to national defense, patrol, or intel/intercept.

The whole concept of a "fighter" is weakened greatly by not only other flight technologies and fighting methods, but historically, it is ground forces supplied by transport and logistic assets that are core to actual battle, not young guys playing Top Gun and running skirmishes, God love them.

I'm afraid your old F-15 "crew chief" is still alive and well in the Pentagon culture, however.

At any rate, fighter technology like the F-22 and JSF are really, outside of interesting R&D tech projects and employment platforms, just propaganda/intimidation tools to project technical prowess; but they can still be disabled by very low tech means by very backward nations/groups or last-gen equipment, let alone from their own "unforced errors" that you describe.

fred said...

i forgot ( silly me )

actually ANYONE can serve into the Israeli defense Forces ...

no need to be Jewish or Israeli for such ...

but since you know all , i suppose you knew ...

it is just a question to try to understand from the inside , which is a bit more efficient that the news from fox-TV !

fred said...

Mr Gadfly ...

If there were true "empirical" tests conducted in a wind tunnel or out in the real world, it would have been "full scale" with an actual aircraft, at full velocity ...

i agree !

the opposite method would through calculation ...
a mock-up 22% smaller with the wrong engines and no wingtips = a valid test ?

in a Vern's dream , may be !

with the amount of things that was not conform to statements or projections , what credit can be added by such PR comedy ?

baron95 said...

No_Skids said...
If you just judge an airplane by what it's made to do-fly-the F-22 is a great plane.
=============================

Thank you - maybe that will steer us back on track.

Picking up on your comments, most people misunderstand the true F-22 mission.

It is a first-day-of-war air-dominance-fighter that can then do a credible job of maintaining air supremacy and joining the bomb trucks on days 2+.

The US has had to go into heavily defended airspace multiple times and will continue to have to do so. And the SAMs and opposing fighters are getting better and better.

Some say the F-22 will never be "used" in combat, and they make the false leap that, therefore it is not needed.

Well, if the F-22 is never used, that is the biggest measure of success. Just like our SLBMs and all our nuclear arsenal was never used.

The F-22 presents opponents with such an asymmetric threat, that they may never challenge the USAF. And THAT is the true value of a weapon system. Be so vastly superior that no-one ever comes up to fight you.

Eyes-Wide-Shut said...

I received a recent report from FlightAware on the EA50 activities since March 2009. Here is what is stated:

Total number of active aircraft: 159
Total number of blocked aircraft: 25
Total number of aircraft whose last destination was outside of the country: 28
Total number of aircraft with no data: 2


There were a total of 260 aircraft produced. Subtracting (25) blocked aircraft, (28) Dayjet fleet, (2) aircraft with no flight data, and (1) crashed aircraft leaves a remaining 176 aircraft. By my math, 159 out of 176 is a majority of the fleet still flying that FlightAware can observe.

gadfly said...

Just for fun, think back forty years . . . late 1960's:

In a facility in Santa Ana, California (Plasmadyne, Inc., part of Giannini Scientific Corp.), I was a “model maker/machinist/ senior research technician, and a few other “hats”, and member of a team of about eight or nine others), building equipment, test models, etc., for testing the ablative heat-shield material, for various missiles and re-entry capsules . . . as in “Apollo”, etc. And, to make one of the bloggers feel correct, we conducted “empirical” experiments, in an eight or ten foot diameter steel tunnel, high-vacuum facility, duplicating the earth’s atmosphere, and the effects of the ablative material re-entering a mix of 80% nitrogen and 20% oxygen, in a hypersonic plasma jet, produced by a 2.4 megawatt plasma generator (which we built, from copper/tungsten/gold and silver soldering/boron-nitride/chrome-alumel/Teflon/"Poco" graphite/etc.) . . . most of our equipment, test probes, actual calibration models, were built by us in our "model shop".

The ground actually shook, a city block away, from the huge vacuum pumps (both “Roots” and rectangular piston pumps), carrying away the gas from a “Piggy” (sixteen bottles of oxygen, emptying through four 1" hoses, controlled through 2:1 sonic nozzles, to control the flow), and a semi-truck trailer, stacked with long bottles of nitrogen, emptying at a phenomenal rate. The power supplies were housed a large open building, filled with AC/DC rectifiers . . . over 1200 VDC and about 2,000 Amps (continuous). A tall tower of water supplied the cooling, to keep the coils, cathode, and anode from instant meltdown.

(One time, someone forgot to start the cooling water, power was applied, igniting the arc with "argon", and switching to "nitrogen" . . . the entire unit had a complete meltdown, in less time that it takes to read this sentence. Not a good day! I wasn't there, that time.)

You could say that it was a “wind tunnel”, and the data was extrapolated . . . “slide rule” in those day, and plotted out by hand. But the material was introduced into the plasma stream at actual velocity and heat, and the actual material was being tested in real time.

Today, we remember that Apollo 11 did it’s thing, forty years ago.

That company is long gone. The scientists who designed the equipment, are probably long dead. The land where it all took place is filled with commercial buildings, and a freeway infrastructure . . . not far from final approach into John Wayne Airport.

For the sake of the lives of the astronauts, etc., I’m glad we didn’t use “scale models” in a low-speed wind tunnel, and maybe some “heat lamps” to simulate the effects of coming back down to earth.

gadfly

gadfly said...

Let’s not miss “Eyes-Wide-Shut” comments, that came in the same time as my last blog:

These numbers may be significant in the near future . . . when new numbers come in, and we begin to see a “curve” in the data.

gadfly

baron95 said...

Deep Blue said... as far as "doing what it was designed to do" the F-22 might be considered by many to be antiquated as to mission: dogfighting, WWII style.
====================

What??? Close-in dogfighting is not the F-22's mission. The F22s mission is to kill air assets (and secondarily well defended ground assets), without being detected.

Engagements are to be not only beyond visual range (BVR) but also beyond effective detection range (by Radar, IR, etc).

Exactly how are you going to protect a strike package on day 1 against a heavily defended airspace with dispersed air assets like North Korea, India, Russia, China.

Yes, we can send cruise missiles at $2M a pop to the "known and concentrated" assets. Then what?

We'll always need to get in there to dump the JDAMs, SDBs, other cheap precision munitions.

The strike packages will be challenged, particularly in the countries above with AWACS and deep air defenses.

Well, except if the F22s are hunting ;)

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 287   Newer› Newest»