Tuesday, September 22, 2009

For Sale- By Owner (and dealer, and factory)

A delightful surprise came my way late last week- an article by journalist Molly McMillin. Molly covers the aviation industry for the Wichita (Ks) Eagle newspaper, and has graciously consented to allowing her article from last Thursday to be posted for us to discuss.

"Fewer business jets for sale: Despite fewer used business jets on the market, the market is still characterized by oversupply and weak pricing".

by Molly McMillin, Sep 17, 2009,The Wichita Eagle

”The number of used business jets on the market fell in August, the second decline in three months after 18 consecutive monthly increases, a recently released report says.

Although it's come down slightly from record highs, the number of business jets on the market is still 36 percent higher than it was a year ago, according to UBS analyst David Strauss in a report.

Seventeen percent of the business jet fleet is up for sale. The average asking price for newer models is down 30 percent from peak levels. Pricing fell another 2 to 3 percent in August, the report said.

The asking price for a Citation Excel was roughly unchanged last month but is down 38 percent from its peak, it said.

The price of a Hawker Beechcraft Hawker 800XP declined about 3 percent last month and is now 37 percent down from its peak.

The average asking price of a Cessna Citation X declined about 3 percent in August and is down 47 percent from its recent peak, the report said.

The used business jet market is a leading indicator of new business jet sales.

The business jet market is still characterized by significant oversupply, weak pricing and tight financing, Strauss wrote.

"We think record high used available inventories will continue to overhang orders, pressure existing backlogs and could force further production cuts," he said.

Although there is indication of modest improvement, "we still see risk of an extended downturn," Strauss wrote.

Rich Jiwanlal, Hawker Beechcraft vice president for human resources, said last week that business conditions have not improved in any meaningful way.

"These are very, very challenging times," Jiwanlal said.

Leaders from Cessna Aircraft's parent company told analysts last week that business jet deliveries are expected to decline slightly in 2010 before moving higher.

This year, Cessna's jet deliveries are expected to be down about 40 percent to 275 over last year's shipments.

At the end of August, Strauss estimated there were 3,014 business jets for sale, about 1 percent lower than the previous month and 36 percent higher than a year ago.

Business jet inventories decreased 2 percent in August, Strauss reported.

Of the five major planemakers, Bombardier had the highest percentage of its fleet up for sale at 18 percent. That's followed by Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft at 17 percent, Dassault at 15 percent and Gulfstream at 14 percent, the report said.”

It's refreshing to see good journalism, and makes me eager to read more of Molly's articles. She has a great blog site too- Air Capital Insider


ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Nice scoop and congrats on now getting several cooperative pieces (this from the Eagle and the previous post with help from Aboulafia - you are putting your own stamp on the current iteration of the blog and it is good.

Phil Bell said...

Thanks- I enjoy what could probably best be described as :

a) "pop" technology
b) "pop" economics
c) "pop" political science

("Pop" being a colloquialism for "popular"/amateur- I wish I knew more about each subject, and I've enjoyed the blog's discussions on each of these topics- by those much more well versed in one or all, than I).

About "four score and seven years ago" (well, maybe not THAT long ago:), I was working at a GA o.e.m., and marveled equally at the technical nature of things, as well as the financial. After a few months of contemplation and observation, I realized that the aircraft business was about tax laws and finance, as much as it was about aerodynamics and propulsion.

(I might add, "pop" intrigue to the list as well- seems like the Eclipse saga had plenty of that !! :) Although I'd say for "amateur" sleuths, some pretty good conclusions were drawn early on... I'm still fairly "enthusiastic" about the Eclipse airplane, but a bit "critical" of the execution- I think most of our readers share that position).

Floating Cloud said...

CW help!

Not to put asunder a very good and informative post by Phil, but I seem to have a real knack for unknowingly ending posts just as a new one is posted. And I think I have done it again. Please see last post on previous thread for a silly story that's purely just for fun.

Floating Cloud

Phil Bell said...

Thank you Molly, for letting me post your article. And thank you for the great reporting- it's refreshing to see good, factual coverage of aviation.

From what we've seen elsewhere;

The scale and magnitude of the Eclipse near-success, was largely due to "enthusiastic" media coverage.

The scale and magnitude of the Eclipse failure, was largely due to "enthusiastic" media coverage.

In other words, it's nice to see reporting that is not based on (overly) "enthusiastic" press releases. To individuals, and to the public, the truth matters.

Thanks to Molly, and the editors at the Wichita Eagle, for promoting good journalism (and not just plain "promoting").

Molly's blog is quite interesting and informative:
Air Capital Insider

Phil Bell said...

Floating Cloud,
I'm sorry to have interrupted the discussion on your post- I tried to get this new headline up early this AM, but had a be-dickens of a time with the internet (hours!)- finally downloaded
Mozilla Firefox
for a browser.

I don't know if Microsoft pushed a buggy update for Internet Explorer (or if perhaps many websites have security weakness that IE just started blocking), but Firefox cured my problems with the blasted
"Oops! This link appears to be broken"
messages that I was getting all day.

I don't know enough about the relative merits of the two browsers, but I've got'em both loaded now, and from what I've found out today, apparently it is not uncommon to encounter websites that won't open with one, but will with the other.

Sometimes IE works, and Firefox doesn't; and vice versa. Apparently Bill Gates is also into "pop" technology. (But definitely NOT "pop" economics ! :)

Phil Bell said...

Hi Baron,
"Thought of the day.... 'Just because Boeing-787/GM management is disgracefully incompetent, doesn't mean that SOME of the bad decisions/outcomes didn't come about because of union's extortionist practices'. There - have fun with that till Phil pull another post out of his hat."

Well, er,
(welcome to the new post! :)

Phil Bell said...

Hi Flying Cloud,
Thanks for your post at the bottom of the previous thread- I've brought it forward- it's too good to lose! :):

Flying Cloud sez-
Hello All:

This is a “post” I wrote a few weeks ago (but never posted) while I was working in a remote area of NM (as an anthropologist) without internet connection. Due to this blog, I realized that I want to learn how to fly AND the importance of the GA industry. In the mean time I'll do my best to promote the industry. I hate stereotypes and I hope I am not promoting one here, but I was in a remote area with nothing better to do than write. And then it seemed way too silly to post it at all when I returned home to ABQ, but now you guys just seem way too bored not to. And hey, these days there's nothing wrong with a little fantasy to get by... I certainly have the passion, guts, and good sense of wind and water to be an excellent pilot.

BTW I am actually not that far off from my description below.

Sept. 9, 2009

I AM Mary!

I step out of my silver Caddy XLR-V onto the tarmac wearing navy high heels with a knee-length skirt to match and a bellowing white silk blouse that lightly shows off my figure in the breeze. My wavy dark golden hair brushes just past my shoulders as I turn to examine the airplane through my deep blue eyes shielded by aviator glasses.

My flight plan? ABQ to Martha's Vineyard.

There, Black Tulip is waiting for me to whisk me off to one of his favorite restaurants and indulge me in oysters, champagne, and witty billy goat stories. A tear rolls down my cheek while I wave good-bye through a fiki qualified windshield as an air taxi man and an air safety man guide me towards the runway.

Next I’m off to Ireland for a pint with Shane and some bangers and mash with a side of luscious cold wet mackerel and freedom jam tarts for breakfast. Shane and I talk shop while playing darts and discuss how much we both love to get our hands dirty while tinkering with oily engines and why its advantageous to not have fake nails or anything else fake for that matter. The Baron will vouch for me on that.

A small gadfly on the wall at the pub asks the 1.5 - 2.5 million dollar question, “What VLJ is the ladies choice of airplane?”

The Phenom, the Mustang? An E500? Maybe the E500; it is sweet, sexy, and cheap. Hmm…But on the other hand it comes with a built-in Ken to translate its highly sophisticated flight manual. And then, oh dear, Ken might have to wait in the car while I’m visiting with Shane. Huh, such a dilemma….

And another dilemma, what SHALL I do with the marriage proposal from Eclipso? sigh...

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

Very good opening post Floating Cloud - looks like you'll fit right in.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

If you want to have your blood raised to a boil, go read the unbelievable revelations coming out of the ongoing Epic bankruptcy over at Avweb.

I am flabbergasted at the reported state of the company dating back to 2008, how well that was hidden, and the level of apparent dishonesty and manipulation from some of the high-level folks there, just unbelievable.

Literally beside myself, very very disappointing - here is hoping it can be worked out equitably for all involved (well, almost all involved).

Kudos to Russ and crew at AvWeb - good work on a very bad story.

baron95 said...

Flying Cloud said...to not have fake nails or anything else fake for that matter. The Baron will vouch for me on that.


I must have missed that "flight review" ;)

But I do hope you indeed learn to fly and make the ABQ to MVY trip someday.

For the record: I have ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEM with "remanufactured" parts with zero time on them. ;)

Welcome to the blog.

baron95 said...

CW....the Avweb article on Epic quotes "...Chief Financial Officer David Clark, he estimates Epic owes builders about $15 million in parts and has no money to meet those obligations."

How quaint. A bankruptcy with claims in the $$$ low millions vs the contemporary $$$ tens or hundreds of billions.

baron95 said...

From Hice's (Epic GM) affidavit "July 16th, 2009 I was terminated after Rick Schrameck physically attacked me".

From Clark's (Epic Comptroller) affidavit "When TAM sent $700K to build an Elite Jet, Rick paid $700K to ER1 (another Rick Schrameck shell company run by his common law wife)".

What a nice guy. Makes Vern look like such a crook by comparison.

On a side note....with ALL the options IMMEDIATELY AVAILABLE in the market from reasonably stable companies, I really wonder what makes someone (e.g. Gunner, King) send almost $3M to a guy like Schrameck.

I know we should never judge people with hindsight. But "what were they thinking"?

It is one thing for Ken at the height of the boom (circa 2000-2005) to send 60% of $1M to Eclipse, when no VLJs were available.

But for Gunner and King to continue to make multi-million in payments in post-crash 2008/2009 to this outfit is hard to justify.

Is the satisfaction with existing GA designs SO LOW, that obviously smart and successful people are so easily swindled out of their money chasing shaky startups with prototypes?

I'm so happy for this recession. At least it exposed the likes of Lehman, Chrysler, Epic.

Now back to original programming. Dow made a failed run at 10,000 today. Oh well, maybe next week.

baron95 said...

Oh, and just in case it wasn't clear, the reorganization "plan" is asking the "builders" to contribute to create a $5M investment to fund the reorganized company.

Oh well.

baron95 said...

It seems to be the preferred funding mechanism for funding GA companies these days.

1 - Take deposits (use great Powerpoints, flying prototypes, etc).

2 - Mannufacture funding milestones to collect progress payments.

3 - Use the money of new sales to cover work in progress.

4 - When the pyramid scheme become fully exposed, file for bankruptcy, and ask the existing depositors and/or unsuported owners to fund the new company.

So I finally found a way to make money in GA. This is failsafe.

Since the above is current practice, I think I'll create a pool of Credit Default Swaps against companies like Epic, Eclipse, Adam, packaged them as a CDO and sell it to AIG.

If you want in on the B95 GA CDS Tranche I Fund - send me an email via Phil and I'll provide the money wire instructions.

Shane Price said...


You forgot point number 5.

Announce your own firing, at the opening day press conference of Oshkosh, then go around boasting about how you blew a billion dollars.

Of other peoples money.

The 'children' at Epic were mere pickpockets, compared to Vern. He, after all, fooled far more people out of tons more money....

Floating Cloud,

Welcome to our little club. But if I might correct you on one small point.

A true Irishman would rarely eat in a proper pub.

It wastes valuable drinking time....


airsafetyman said...

"1 - Take deposits (use great Powerpoints, flying prototypes, etc)."

Flying prototypes aren't always necessary and can be a needless expense! A scale model - especially of a 'supersonic' business jet - works really well, too.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Frankly the whole thing is downright depressing - there were statements made to my face, over a period of time, that turn out not to have been wholly accurate (being kind). The behavior portrayed in the court documents, as well as what I am aware of myself, is attrocious - there is no excuse for it, and given the internecine structures that were deliberately created, one has to wonder about a lot.

The LT and other planes are still a great concept but I am no longer sure how it will play out as more info such as this comes out. I am still hopeful but this is truly ugly - especially given the nature of criticism Epic levelled at Eclipse.

Certainly provides a startling data point as to how the wool was pulled over the eyes of others - at least until the problem became obvious.

Shadow said...

AS, a scale model is fine and all, but how are the test pilots supposed to fit inside it? :-)

airsafetyman said...

"how are the test pilots supposed to fit inside it?"

They don't! You fit them out with flight suits, moustaches, large watches, and really dark sunglasses and have them hand out the brochures!

Floating Cloud said...

Thank you gentlemen for welcoming my meager attempt at diversion from the constant onslaught of dreary news these days. I would like to mention that I have contributed before, at the end of the last two threads on EA Critic NG. If anyone cares to go back and look: Denys Finch Hatton http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denys_Finch_Hatton was one of the earliest pilots to fly small single engine aircraft in Africa. His paramour Karen Blixen aka Isaac Dinesen was an author and story teller, which seemed to me an appropriate parallel to the close of the epic Eclipse story that you have all told so well. Unfortunately for true explorers and adventureres there is always the chance of going down in flames as did Finch-Hatton leaving Karen with his gift of a pen and many stories to tell.

As to the comment that was removed this morning, I thank the blog administrators but I would like to mention for those who read it, there is a long history and connection between anthropologists and aviation. In fact, it is probably the single greatest instrument to have contributed to the understanding of humankind as well as to many other disciplines. There are just as many stereo-types of anthropologists out there as there are for jet-flying executives. One of the best ways to fight stereo-types is to confront them by bringing them to our attention. I did not hallucinate Mary while smoking peyote in the field (as inferred) in fact, she was conjured up here in entirety right down to her “nails working in oily engines.” As to the “fake” business, nothing worse to be called a fake when you are not. A museum curator’s worse nightmare…

From a socio/anthropological perspective this blog tells a mini story of the world as it exists right now and that’s why I like it. As a participant/observer I will float in and out from time to time, maybe as Mary or maybe as my alter ego Flying Cloud – someone else you all invented in the last 24.

Floating Cloud, PhD

PS Shane, Mary can drink you under the table because she had a good breakfast…

baron95 said...

CW said LT and other Epic designs are great concepts.


That is just it. I think the LT (at least on paper, pictures, early reports from pilot/builders) is, in fact, a good design. I also think that the EA500/400 and DiamondJet are also great concepts.

I think all involved, set out with good intentions to bring those planes to market.

It is just so bad that the barriers imposed by certification and low volume production of complex machines, invariably ends up changing people. From the circle the wagons attitude of Vern Raburn to the more deceitful shell game of Rick S.

That is too bad.

I'm not a fan of gvmt propping up industry. But PERHAPS, GA is an exception I'm willing to support. Given that our gvmt feels that it is OK to prop up mature, stable industry like auto production and banking, and given that *A LOT* of the barriers to innovation in GA are due to gvmt regulations, perhaps a real, multi-billion dollar GA incubation program is in order.

1 - Gvmt subsidizes 50% of the cost to upgrade ANY plane under 12,500 lbs MTOW to glass/SVT/TWAS etc for 10 years.

2 - Gvmt subsidizes on a sliding scale, any newly certified engine which achieves better SFC and higher MTBO (perhaps with requirement to run with UL gaz for pistons for extra credit). E.g. New engines get a 1% subsidy for each %SFC reduction from a base line for 10 years.

3 - Gvmt subsidizes 50% re-engining of the fleet to new engines.

4 - Gvmt provides 25% incentive for purchase of new GA planes under 12,500 MTOW.

5 - Gmt make free (subcontracted) chart,weather svcs to all N-registered planes).

So on.

Perhaps that is the only way to bring about innovations.

It will likely cost less than the $80B donation to GM and Chrysler or the $150B donation to AIG.

Chances of passage - ZERO.

Shane Price said...

Floating Cloud,

PS Shane, Mary can drink you under the table because she had a good breakfast…

And she wouldn't be alone in that ability, as I can't drink very much due to advancing years!

I should also point out that today is a very special day for Irishmen, worldwide.

250 years ago, on the 24th of September 1759, Arthur Guinness signed a 999 year lease on the lands which became the St. James Gate brewery.

And another thing....

It's been a while since I checked
Controller.com, but you can now buy early FPJ's for $850,000 (or less if you haggle) and even the later tails are listing at the sort of money that might tempt the unwary.

To anyone feeling the itch, try a search for either Cessna Mustang or Embraer Phenom. There are 26 of the former and 32 of the latter offered for sale, and there's bound to be real value, from real companies, who've built real aircraft.

I think is fair to say that either jet will have a higher resale value than the FPJ, when your 'twin jet' itch has been well and truly scratched.


Beedriver said...

Having bought a few airplanes, the phrase "pay me now or pay later comes to mind".

I have found and it is lore out there in the aircraft community that the cheapest airplane of a given type is the one that is already in good shape with the avionics you want and supported by a solid company. The cheapest airplanes in total cost I have bought, are the expensive ones that have are already in great shape.

That is what springs to mind in the used Eclipse vs Mustang discussion

Floating Cloud said...


Good to know the lease on the land at St. James brewery to make Guinness beer still has 749 years to go after 250 years of business. Now there’s a solid manufacturing company with lasting quality!

I have looked into what it would cost to learn how to fly… it is really weird I do have the itch. Probably it's not within the realm of an academic’s salary.

So Mary could buy me the airplane! Even a good used one would work for me. I am leaning towards the Cessna Mustang since my first car was a used ten year old 67 Ford Mustang with a V-8 engine. It would make a nice connection to the past - first car, first airplane.

No worries about Mary’s ability to out drink you. Mary is fictional so she doesn’t get hangovers, sort of an unfair advantage!

Floating Cloud

gadfly said...

Floating Cloud, anthropologist,

Be pleased to meet my friend and geologist, Carol Hill . . . beginning with one of her many papers:


Her husband, Alan Hill, is the inventor of the CO2, "Electric Gas Laser" (re: "Star Wars", Air Force Weapon's Lab, and on and on, etc.) If you should visit the "book shop" at Carlsbad, and other famous caves, you will find various technical books authored, or co-authored by Carol Hill.

And as an anthropologist, you may find great interest in her work. She is a straight-forward and honest scientist . . . most refreshing in a world in which many have an agenda of only promoting their own pre-conceived ideas.


(We have known and worked with the Hill's for about three decades, and can vouch for their honesty and straight-forward approach in scientific investigation.)

gadfly said...

Floating Cloud, et. al.,

Should any go into the previous reference with "pre-conceived ideas" overshadowing all that is said, you'll miss the entire message . . . and fall into the trap so often demonstrated over the past few years in this continuing blog. Start with your brain as a "blank unused scratch pad" and put down your thoughts as if you had never before approached the subject. Then, and ONLY then, bring it back into the world of your previous thinking, and put the two together.

A long time ago, I did some
"term papers" on Marxism . . . Engels, Anti-Duhring, Lenin, Stalin, etc. . . . saying to myself, "What is the appeal of this . . . why do the pseudo-intellectual folks buy this stuff?"

And I bought a used book . . . "Handbook of Marxism" (International Publishers, 1935 . . . cost my $2.75, in a Santa Ana, California, used book store, plus $5 for the parking ticket . . . best $7.75 plus tax I ever spent) . . . and read it throughly, learning things I could never have learned otherwise.

For the first time, and ever since, I came to understand why folks would believe and embrace the teaching of Marx and Engels . . . like our present president.

Ah yes . . . consider the "other side" through his/her eyes, and you will be better equipped to know where you stand. Or maybe you might need to come up with something better, or discover that the "best" was already at hand.

Folks that have read the comments of the gadfly know where I stand, whether in "Very Light Jets", politics, or Bible truths . . . but honest debate, without namecalling and "put-downs" shows a desire to know the truth, and embrace it at all costs.


('Funny thing about all the study of Marxism . . . my "prof" in "English Rhetoric" at Orange Coast College was a Marxist . . . and I got almost straight "A's", the first time in my entire history of education (outside of technical subjects . . . another story) . . . even though he and I were at opposite ends of the debate.)

gadfly said...

Last comment for the day: I just looked at that "Handbook" ("handbook" always sounds like the abreviated version of something) . . . 1,088 pages of fine print, and I read it all, with understanding). Hey, I could even read the new "health thing", and I'm a slow reader . . . but let's not push that one.


(Now, to start the car, put on the left turn signal, and drive home in the left lane of I-40 at about 45 mph . . . and wonder why all those idiots are staring at me! Har har !)

Shadow said...

Floating Cloud, some community colleges have aviation programs and you can get student loans to cover your ground class and flying lessons. Better yet, a number of these community colleges even subsidize the flight costs. You just have to be living in the right area, though.

Floating Cloud said...

Dear Shane, Shadow, Gadfly et al:

I am so excited I can hardly contain myself! And that does not mean...doing anything weird with a computer. Okay, get this, I have tuition remission as an employee of the University of New Mexico and lo and behold that includes the community college of NM that offers an aerospace and technology program. Essentially (and I have yet to figure it all out), my tuition is covered to learn how to fly at Bode Aviation!! This is Cessna aerospace training at its best(one can only hope in New Mexico.) OMG I'm gonna do this!

On the philisophical level offered by Gadfly, yes, indeed one would hope we have the ability as adults to understand how much our egos underly our behavior, thoughts, and motivation. Always being "right" does not lead to truth. As the Gadfly on the wall speaks he offers wise advise. Is it not better for all to win in any given situation? From there we can build.

I'm still so excited by the idea of learning how to fly that I don't really care about all the heavy stuff!

"Flying Cloud" may have not been a misnomer at all..

Floating Cloud

PS Gadfly, I will be very interested to learn more about your friends. Thank you.

PPS I promise to let you all carry on with your valuable conversations without too much interuption.

gadfly said...

Flying Cloud

Once upon a time . . . I learned to fly at $4 per hour, with or without instruction . . . "twin engine" was $8 per hour (subsidized by gifts to Moody). My new bride and I were accepted to go off to Jos, Nigeria . . . and while in preparation, my young bride, then mother of two, and now grandmother of nineteen, failed in health . . . so we unpacked, and three years later settled in Albuquerque, with our family of "four".

Flying, and life as God provides it, is exciting . . . often filled with the unknown, yet with a firm and sure destination.

Whether forty thousand feet in the air, or four hundred feet below the surface of the ocean . . . I find all of life worth living, and enjoy the privileges that God has provided in this world . . . with greater things yet to be lived.


Floating Cloud said...


To think that I have gone from heart break to elation all due to Eclipse aviation (+ blog) only further proves your point.

Flying Cloud

gadfly said...

It's a minor point, but our family of "four" was "four kids".

And speaking of flying, with the balloon festival soon upon us, we remember the excitement of the first balloon festival, down near where I then worked on Edith Blvd., with a total of about eight balloons that first year, in the early seventies. The second year, the balloons were inflating on the fair grounds up in the "heights", and a balloon came down close to our house in a small park. Now there are hundreds of balloons, and the "locals" hardly even bother to look up.

Flying should never get "common place" . . . there is still much to be said about flying in a J3 Cub, or a Cessna 150, within a thousand feet of the ground . . . and the thrill of that first solo landing, when it seems the wheels will never touch the turf.


(But I still don't trust flying things that don't have wings, or ships that cannot submerge, and re-surface now and then. And now our oldest grandson is beginning submarine school, and some of the others have been going up in light aircraft out at Moriarty.)

bill e. goat said...

Floating Cloud,
Sounds like Eclipse was a happy experience- may I inquire if it was the company, or the airplane, (or our "company"? :)

I hope will be able to take care of that flying itch! (I just scratched it a few years ago- it's about $5500-7500, figuring medical, headset, books, written and check ride, instructor, insurance, etc.) That buys a lot of Mustang parts!

And if you're going to fly something will metal wings, well, prices go up from there! (Just kidding- sort of).

Anyway, welcome!

bill e. goat said...

Hi Gadfly,
"I learned to fly at $4 per hour, "twin engine" was $8 per hour"

I tried to save money- but the instructor kept insisting I take off on both engines.


bill e. goat said...

Floating Cloud,
I just finished reading your post about flight training being paid for- congrats!!!

I have a suggestion (one I thought about, and wish I would have done)- keep a journal, maybe one page or so, documenting your thoughts and preparation before each flight, and another page for your thoughts after each flight. When contemplating learning to fly, I wished I could have found a book that was sort of "my experiences learning to fly". Maybe you could publish it!

Congrats and best wishes!

baron95 said...

In case anyone still cares....Boeing announced that 787 ZA001 along with the static test frame began their wing attach mods. The whole process will take 3 months.

Sounds like a complicated fix, given that the whole 787 final assembly process was once said to be only 3 days. So this job is 20 times more complex than final assembly of a whole 787 was supposed to be.

P.S. These days, Boeing is "hoping" to achieve 6 days per frame in final assembly. Still ;)

Good luck to the teams working inside ZA001's wings - that can't be pleasant.

I'm starting to have my doubts about my prediction of first flight just before the end of the year. Oh well.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Shane,
"I think is fair to say that either jet will have a higher resale value than the FPJ, when your 'twin jet' itch has been well and truly scratched."

Let's hope our pal Floating_Cloud can get hooked up with one of THOSE with an academic program!

(Which reminds me- I think the University of North Dakota had some Eclipsi on order- or maybe just participated in a pilot training development for VLJs- at any rate, they took delivery of a Mustang).

"Eclipse Aviation introduced an in-house mandatory training program for customers of its Eclipse 500 very light twinjet that includes pilot qualification and supplemental training by the University of North Dakota aerospace department. Jet-transition and type-rating courses will be provided free of charge with each Eclipse 500 purchased. A mandatory type-training admission evaluation will cost between $500 and $750. The jet-transition course is slated to begin next summer."

WOO-HOO; looking back on it, what a crack-head/cracked-head stunt show it was...

AIN Nov 2002: UND aerospace to help train Eclipse pilots

bill e. goat said...

Hi Baron,
I reviewed your suggestions for a GA stimulus package- hmmm.

I think the government is already doing a fair amount to stimulate GA-
NASA/DARPA/DOD has funded a lot of stuff that makes GA like easier (re: GPS, internet, engine, aerodynamics, materials research).

FAA does it's part too, with free certification and air traffic control. (And think of all the nav aids that have been maintained for free use, over the decades).

As far as a stimulus to get things going, I think the Light Sport Aircraft reg was pretty cool- I think expanding that to a bit more capable airplane *might* be a good thing, maybe to a 4-seater.

(But, I have a lot of appreciation for the FAR regs on aircraft certification, and think the industry- and especially the public- is better with them, than without them).

Shane Price said...


I'm only speculating, but it's easy to imagine that both Boeing and their 787 customers are not under vast pressure to build (or buy) '6 a day'.

With the current state of commercial aviation worldwide I'd say there are sighs of relief, all round, that the 787 schedule continues to slide.

The other thing to consider is the target market for this bird, which are these mythical 'long and thin' routes. My gut tells me that in difficult times both business and commercial travel will seek the lowest price, even if this means flying hubs rather than Boeing's idea of linking smaller airports over long distances.

I can link this back to GA by reminding everyone that Vern bet on high volume to pitch his price so low. One of the key drivers for this volume was to be the air taxi idea, which patently does not exist on the scale Eclipse required.

It's possible that the company who 'bet the farm' on the 747 and high volume between hubs could have called the market wrong with 'long and thin'.

Just like the English and the French failed to secure a supersonic future.

And I've one more 'beef' today.

Obama is not a follower of Karl Marx. He's not even close, as he's missing a central pillar of that failed dogma.


There are no 'workers' left in the USA....

By this I mean that what Marx saw (masses of downtrodden industrial trogs doing the 'three D's) no longer exists in America. The vast majority of the Difficult, Dangerous and Dirty jobs are being done elsewhere.

So, gadly, I have to disagree with you. Marx appealed to the huddled masses in Europe, at a time when those with an imagination and a bit of get up and go were emigrating (by the millions) to North America.

Except for some my ancestors, who were heading in the opposite direction, but I digress.

There were hardly any true Marxist states, ever. The few who came close did so by reducing the entire population to the same level of misery.

Albania, Cambodia and North Korea spring to mind, with a sideswipe at Zimbabwe while I'm on a roll.

I think you will agree with me that, while things are a bit difficult at present in the good 'ol US of A, you have a long way to go before you reach those levels....


gadfly said...


You're correct . . . but then Engels, Lenin, and Stalin didn't follow the original philosophy, either. But many "modern" workers "believe" themselves to be downtrodden.


Shadow said...

I hate to interject politics here, but anyone who thinks Obama is any worse than George W. either needs to stop smoking the wacky weed or have their head examined. The current uproar is mainly about ideology and the fact that neither side wants to compromise and meet in the middle. I say "mainly" because there is a race component here that cannot be entirely ruled out.

Shadow said...

Back to talking about airplanes now...

airsafetyman said...

Speaking of flying lessons, the Federal taxpayers spent about a million running Dubya through USAF flight school and recieved exactly zip for it. The money produced a marginal pilot who couldn't even show up for monthly Texas Air Guard meetings and had no observed interest in aviation whatsoever.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

If another person of a particular political persuasion accuses me of diminished metnal capacity and racism because I disagree fundamentally with Marxist ideology as expressed by an empty suit who happens to be part black I swear I will scream.

The opposition to Obama's policies have nothing to do with race and instead is related wholly to this desire to remake the US into something unrecognizable.

Had the leader of another nation made the anti-American speech Obama gave to the UN the other day, the American delegation would have walked out protest, in days gone by, you know, when we had a pair.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

I've had enough of this tripe - good luck y'all.

Shadow said...

Like I said, this is mostly ideological. Thanks for proving me right, ColdWet. You can't even stand to be conversing with people who don't fully align with your ideology on an aviation message board. Suggest you take your own advice and grow a pair instead of running away from an aviation blog over one comment. Thought you were better than that. Guess not.

Floating Cloud said...
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Dave said...

I say "mainly" because there is a race component here that cannot be entirely ruled out.

Damn the Le Mans!

gadfly said...
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Floating Cloud said...
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baron95 said...

Slightly less boring than the previous discussion is reading the KC-X Tanker RFP.

It has 2,000% more pages than the original KC-135 RFQ. So naturally, the KC-X will be 2,000% better, right?

Enjoy your tax dollars at work.

baron95 said...

Oh, and by the way, ANY Joe Smoe can registered as an interested party and prepare to bid here

Floating Cloud said...
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Floating Cloud said...


You’re preaching to the choir or perhaps the synagogue, but I agree with you.

However, I did not volunteer my participation for abuse. (CW, I’m so there with you).

And now I am losing all interest unless Baron finds “real” more interesting than “fake.”

Rest assured fine friends, I will continue to follow my desire to fly and see where it takes me.

Floating Cloud

PS Billy e. Goat, You’re a great guy to call me pal, and I promise to take notes throughout flight training once I get there. Roger that.

September 25, 2009 8:31 PM

Posted to For Sale- By Owner (and dealer, and factory)
Delete Comment Cancel

gadfly said...

Floating Cloud . . . Please forgive me, since you took it as abuse. It was not meant in that way, but to encourage you in your endeavors. I withdraw my last post, since it seems to be a problem.


Floating Cloud said...


I am so sorry if I misinterpreted your good intentions.

Really NO need to apologize. I am a woman with a real heart and mind and can not pretend to be otherwise in whatever this cyber space world seems to be. You are not responsible for that my friend.

All is well.

Floating Cloud

gadfly said...

Thank you.

julius said...

Floating Cloud,

floating -- not flying? Clouds are flying or? ... they are floating
like a gas balloon! (One drives a balloon - at least in Germany).
Sounds like physics or meteorology...
Nomen est omen?
Good luck with flying!


P.S.: ABQ and balloons - no contradiction!

Floating Cloud said...

Thank you, Sir Julius.

Have the aviation course catalog from CNM sitting in front of me. Think I am going to have to start from scratch with Physics... this is gonna take a while. Once I earn my wings than I will indeed be Flying Cloud (an interesting misnomer made by Phil), but until then, I am a mere Floating Cloud.

baron95 said...

Scary stuff - the DJet is on the cover of AOPA Mag.

Previously when the A-500 and Eclipse EA500 made the covers of AOPA Mag and Flying, the companies and programs folded within weeks.

Lets hope that the DJet escapes the same fate.

Phil Bell said...

New headline post is up!

(Another "state of the aviation economy piece- wrapping up what I started at Labor Day, but kept finding more interesting articles. I do not want to emphasis gloom. Rather, there is lots of good information available, explaining -more or less- exactly where we are.

(Hopefully, this information will reduce some of the frustration with the uncertainty of the past many months).

Dave said...

Scary stuff - the DJet is on the cover of AOPA Mag.
Previously when the A-500 and Eclipse EA500 made the covers of AOPA Mag and Flying, the companies and programs folded within weeks.

This is known as the Madden Curse.