Tuesday, March 17, 2009

CWMoR Comprehensive Options and Alternatives for Eclipse 500 Owner/Operators

Well, he is one of 'us' (which makes a refreshing change) and it's a more mature plan that any of the other's I've seen. It's interesting, and makes a very wide sweep in an effort to meet with almost all 'stakeholders'. So here it is, fresh from his own laptop, and written by our very own member of the Honor Roll, ColdWetMackarelofReality

I'm sure it will generate some comment....


The normal warnings and cautions apply. This is not an offer to sell or solicit securities and is very forwarding looking – no guarantees are being made, explicit, implicit or otherwise. This is an overview only.

– Provide the closest thing to win-win for majority of owners
– Realistic, achievable and practical way-forward
– Flexible approach to meet needs/desires of most owners

Situation Summary
– There are ~260 aircraft with varying configurations and states of completion – all with a 10 calendar year fatigue life
– There is presently no source for parts, Instructions for Continued Airworthiness, or Means of Compliance for AD’s or upgrades/repairs
– EAC Assets are in Chapter 7
– Development of new support concepts by 3rd party following Chapter 7 will likely take months to get operational, potentially leaving aircraft AOG into the summer
– Many current plans for support from third parties are focused on restarting production on the backs of the long suffering owners
– The owners are likely divided into several camps with competing interests
• Those who just want ‘out’
• Those who want to continue operating the plane
• Those who want to see the plane re-enter production
• Those who want/need safe effective transportation but are not dedicated to specific airframe/form factor
– The only way the owners community can act as a cohesive group is to address the needs of all owners, not subsidize the needs of a few

Identified Needs
– What is needed is a clearinghouse for the various capabilities needed
• a central management point for the various support activities
• a reliable source of objective information and guidance for the owners
• experienced technical and management leadership
• strategic understanding of the complex big picture
– Efficient exit strategy for those who want out
– Cost effective parts availability for those who want to continue operating the EA-500 (both individually and commercially)
– Experienced support for continued airworthiness
– Development of immediate, short, mid and long term objectives
– Identification of alternatives and risk management
– What is needed is a comprehensive set of overlapping options and alternatives that collectively serve the needs of the majority of owners
• This means realistic and honest evaluation of the situation
• A focus on mutually beneficial approaches to meet the needs of the majority of owners

CWMoR team are willing to fill this central clearinghouse role
• Bring 60 years collective experience in aerospace and defense
• Have existing relationships and experience with FAA
• Have existing connections to the needed skillsets from the former Eclipse
– Excel-Jet brings an alternate airframe possibility and significant design and systems integration experience

Options and Alternatives
– Those who just want ‘out’
• Need an option for assisting in sales or outright purchase for spares
– Those who want to continue operating the plane (individually or commercially)
• Need reliable source of known pedigree parts
• Need source for documentation/means of compliance
• Need experienced strategic management for PMA/STC and other options
– Those who want/need safe effective transportation but are not dedicated to specific airframe/form factor
• Need an alternate airframe that can re-use the PW610’s while placing bulk of airframe and system parts into circulation for spares use
• This frees up the most valuable and portable components on any delivered airframe for re-use and makes purchase of near complete airframes for spare reasonable
– Those who want to see the plane re-enter production
• Need insight into challenges for start-up and certification efforts

– Our recommendation is to NOT seek the assets from CH-7
– Intent is to provide sufficient alternatives to keep any other players honest in their dealings with the owner community
– Excel -Jet Ltd. has offered to produce a modified experimental Sport-Jet 610 design to accommodate the PW610’s based on the airframe of the JT-15D powered Sport-Jet II
– The new Sport-Jet 610 provides speed and range profiles equivalent to or better than the EA-500 Spec but does so at FL250-280 (more easily and inexpensively insured)
– Estimate that there is a need for 5-10 current owners who are interested in alternate airframe to make this a reasonable possibility
– Examining alternatives re: Avio hardware and software
– Excel Jet estimates 12 months from receipt of funds to flying demonstrator aircraft
• Modular design of Sport-Jet II supports development of a new aft-section for PW610’s and associated equipment without requiring redesign of wing, gear, or cabin (all originally sized for single 2,100 lb thrust P&W JT-15D turbofan)
– These owners can then sell their Eclipse airframes (sans engines) into a fleet support spares pool
• Could get the new airframe nearly for free after selling EA-500
– The spares pool provides the time necessary to identify willing vendors, qualify replacement vendors where needed, and lay the foundation for PMA/STC and other options
– CWMoR Team will assist owners to establish a business to manage fleet spares pool and continued airworthiness issues
– Focus immediately on AOG situations
– Prioritize analysis and support needs for A, B. C and D Check, Phased Inspections as well as other inspection requirements and life-limited parts
– Identify vendors interested in upgrading known weak parts (already identified for tires and brakes)
– Identify qualified MRO providers and A&P’s to support the fleet
– Eventually work to remove 10 calendar year airframe life limit and expand to 20,000 hrs
– Excel-Jet Ltd. has offered to honor up to $80,000 in lost Eclipse deposits towards purchase of Sport-Jet II kit

Sport-Jet 610 Preliminary Specifications
– Dimensions
• Length - 34 ft.
• Wingspan - 35.2 ft.
• Height - 9.6 ft.
• Performance
• Maximum Speed - 380 kts
• Normal Cruise - 350 kts
• Economy Cruise - 320 kts
• Rate of Climb - 2,500 ft./min.
• Operational Ceiling - 28,000 ft.
• Stall Speed - 70 kts
• Landing Speed - 85 kts
• Range w/IFR reserve - 1,000 m
• Take-off Distance - 2,300 ft.
• Landing Distance - 1,800 ft.

– Weights / Capacities
• Empty Weight - 3,060 lbs.
• MTOW Weight - 5,500 lbs.
• Payload w/full fuel - 800 lbs.
• Wing Area - 150 sq.ft.
• Fuel Capacity - 260 gal.

– Engines
• (2) PWC 610F 950l b thrust turbofans (1900 lbs total thrust)

– Cabin
• Seating - 4+1
• Cabin Size - 62”w x 49”h x 105”l
• Baggage Area - 27.5 cu.ft.

Initial and ongoing Costs
• Sport-Jet 610 design, tooling and demonstrator aircraft estimated at ~$1.75-2.0M
• PW610 powered Sport-Jet 610 Kit is estimated at ~$700K for the aircraft, options and build assist
• Purchase of 8-12 airframes for spares ~$6-8M
• CWMoR initial management consulting establishing an Owner’s Group business entity ~$250K
• Needed whether or not owners bid for or win CH-7 assets to provide control over maintenance destiny
• Prioritize engineering focus for AOG, scheduled maintenance, and life limited components
• Target for maintenance costs and TC support is in the $400-500/hr range + fuel
• Final cost to be determined based on results of analysis of maintenance concept and risks
• Intended to restore balance of JetComplete concept
• Operations Budget for Owner’s Group Business Entity are estimated at $12-16M/yr funded from per-hour cost above or on a quarterly subscription basis
• Includes Mgmt consulting
• Spares and repair parts
• Most Scheduled/Unscheduled Maintenance
• Continued Airworthiness/Means of Compliance
• Engineering Development (e.g., AMP/SLEP, PMA and STC)

Harlow plan will result in ~$1.78M costs over 9 years, not including upgrades, fuel or unscheduled maintenance (@150 hrs/yr)
• $300,000 initial investment, $800/hr for maintenance and support
• Approximately $198,300 per year in lifecycle costs incl. insurance w/o fuel

Owners Group plan will result in ~$1.24M costs over 9 years, not including upgrades fuel or unscheduled maintenance (@150 hrs/yr)
• $200,000 initial investment
• $70,000/yr for TC support ($467/hr)
• ~$300/hr in maintenance and insurance
• Approximately $137,200 per year in lifecycle costs w/o fuel
• Neither plan provides for immediate or near-immediate spares
• Neither plan provides for immediate engineering support
• Neither plan provides relief for current AOG aircraft
• Neither plan hits the ground running with specific plans for maintenance significant parts and inspections

Savings for CWMoR plan compared to Harlow Plan
• Save $1,060,000 over 9 years
• Equivalent to 250,000 gallons of fuel (5,000 plus hours of flight time)
• Roughly 2-3 times the cost of needed upgrades
• Approximately $100,000 per year savings in lifecycle costs incl. insurance

Savings for CWMoR plan compared to Owners Plan
• Save $510,000 over 9 years
• Equivalent to 127,500 gallons of fuel (2,500 plus hours of flight time)
• Roughly 2 times the cost of needed upgrades
• Approximately $60,000 per year savings in lifecycle costs incl. insurance
• Savings for Sport-Jet 610 compared to EA-500 under Harlow Plan
• $1,350,000 over 9 years (and can operate beyond 9 years out of the box)
• Equivalent to another plane or 337,500 gallons of fuel (6750 hours of flight time)
• DOC estimated at $450-500/hr incl. fuel and insurance

• CWMoR, Logistics Management Consultant
• 18 years in industry, 23 years as a pilot
• 12 turbine aircraft programs, 6,000 – 70,000 lb MTOW
• Bob Bornhofen, CEO Excel-Jet Ltd.
• 30 years in design, manufacturing, TRW and Hughes
• Designed original Maverick TwinJet aircraft in mid-90’s
• Currently finishing detail design and prototype construction on JT-15D powered Sport-Jet II

• This is the only plan to recognize and address the needs of the owner community as a whole as well as individually thus providing real leverage in dealing with any potential entity for service or support
• This plan does not require universal adoption, only needs $10-12M and 5-10 willing owners looking for an alternative for the engines
• This plan does not result in the owners investing $20-40M initially, and a further $100-200M over 9 years supporting a restart of production
• This plan takes advantage of existing regulations and existing, experienced and capable service providers while providing realistic and honest guidance for owner community
• This plan allows the owners to control their destiny without burning an unnecessary additional $100-210M over the next 9 years by providing reasonable alternatives to help keep 3rd parties honest
• The principals of this plan are willing to speak with the owner community directly via telecon, e-mail, or perhaps even a customer summit to answer your questions


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


i agree very much with what is stated here ...

you are a good guy with huge "cojones" to do such a thing as trying to do good in this debacle ...

but i respectfully think you are missing few of the crucial point :

some peoples in our world think that in order to be successful = you need to be very sneaky or you will be played by more sneaky than you are ...

the best guy thinking only about fairness and justice is at best a looser for them ...

the kind who think "somebody's losses = my gain !"

unfortunately : peoples who got in EAC-trap , MAY be of this kind !!!

it doesn't take a lot of them , only a few !!

the "success" of your plan is mainly Dependant on the biggest numbers of those owners ...
(the more they would be , the easier it could be ...)

so on top of others comments :

you miss one point , SOME (to be kind and polite for the ones not concerned ) got in this sinking-boat because they are Plain-dreamers !!

look at Ken ...

after being done so many times , he is begging for some more !!

this is where YOUR plan is doomed for failure ...

not because " you're a great guy...

not because "you're making sens ..."

Not because it is the first time , something can be described with facts that are not out of hyperbole or "we know what we know because we know it !"

only because you are (this is free guess from me , i am sure that you know !)missing the crucial point :

"THEY" are dreamers ... the first one who will come to them with promises of "darkened skies" or "millions $ return" or "Jet-Complete that will make others pay for you ..." , "THEY" will follow ... or its minor dev. = asking themselves "IF that guy would be the one to save their ego and wallet ?

in that respect RiP return is a flagrant proof ...

fred said...

billy ...

i think (feel , know , deduct ) that the "Stimulus-whatever" is pure-madness ...!

up to now , how many Billions and Trillions have been wasted in those ?

with what kind of results ?

no need to be extra-clever to see the stock-market is expecting those with up&downs each times ...

so the "natural" conclusion :

it look like trying to empty the sea with a spoon ...
but putting the subtracted water 10 feet away back into the sea !!

so as long as the core of problems won't be addressed , the problem will remain recurrent !

FreedomsJamtarts said...

Ecorpse Jet featuring RiP is presenting themselves as the choice of the owners group, E5C. Is that based on fact? Is the E5C group endorsing them?

CWMR, I think you plan doesn't have shit show in hell, and agree with ATM in that I sincerely hope (for your sake) that a person of your integrity fails to get sucked up in this vortex of flying BS.

However, I thing you should issue a press release that you and the Sport Jet guy have the support of the Critics Blog, all vendors, and the Ukrainian Minister of Aviation Development - just to keep it honest!

FreedomsJamtarts said...

As for sex in EA500, at least one of the Position holders will have stroked his... Ummm.... Ego at FL410 while congratulating himself on the wisdom of his purchase :)

WhyTech said...

"OK, I just don't understand how on earth a **helicopter** pilot could have pulled this off. "

Clearly you know little about helicopter pilots! :^)

airsafetyman said...

The new company is called Eclipse Jet LLC, and not one of the five principals have any experience in building quality aircraft or running an aircraft maintenance, repair, or overhaul facility. Not one. And the lawyer for the owners' group endorses these people? They are going to work with Roel after ETIRC, ETIRC Aviation, the Turkish air-taxi scam, and on and on and on. It really is over. The owners' group is a collection of badly panicked people who have been so thoroughly scammed the first time they can't admit it and are lining up (or being lined up) to be hit again.

Black Tulip said...

With all the competition over the Eclipse carcass, perhaps the blog should step in. Can we convince the trustee to hold a reverse Dutch auction? In other words, how much would they have to pay us collectively to take over? We certainly have a big enough collection of CEOs, COOs, CFOs, UFOs and SOBs

WhyTech said...

"We certainly have a big enough collection of CEOs, COOs, CFOs, UFOs and SOBs"

And, perhaps, AHs and helicopter pilots.

fred said...

BT :

i do think the "Chinese scoop" is pure propaganda ...
something aimed at raising the stake in the auction ...
(Roel has some doughnuts in the mess , the money has very probably been borrowed = a loss at auction would put him directly in the mess !)

long ago , i predicted that this saga would end-up in Zimbabwe ... we are going , slowly ... but still going !


yes , i would agree with you ...

seems that some have more pride than brain , and more panic than money ...

Dave Ivedorne said...

the serious question is, can one have sex in an EA500?

The serious answer is,


200-or-so people have already been "sexed" BY an EA500, so I suppose that'd be an unequivocal yes.

Ribbed or lubricated?

airtaximan said...

... and Ken went to China last week

should tell you something

bill e. goat said...

"We certainly have a big enough collection of CEOs, COOs,..."

I think we ought to add COOCOO's also-

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Eclipse, there are options for 'as-removed' parts as well as serviceable which requires the testing you mention.

Rest assured, there are smart people already dealing with this and the other challenges.

WhyTech said...

"not one of the five principals have any experience in building quality aircraft or running an aircraft maintenance, repair, or overhaul facility"

We dont need no stinkin aviation people round here!

bill e. goat said...

Second Cessna 162 Crash
Pilot Okay, used ballistic recovery chute.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Fred,
"so as long as the core of problems won't be addressed , the problem will remain recurrent !"


I've been waiting for someone to sum up the problem, so we know exactly what to fix.
There are a plethora of problems, but what would list as the top 3?

Thanks for the diagnosis!

(I'm amazed at how well the "talking heads" on television analyze the current situation, with so much confidence, certainty, and precision- and for sure the results of some actions are predictable- but yet there seems to be so many surprises and unpredictability in the economy. It would seem if we can't predict the future under present conditions, it would be even harder to predict the future with new proposals.

I think it's like the weather- ha ha- as Will Rogers said, "everyone talks about it but nobody does anything about it". (Although with global warming, maybe that will not be true for long...:)

WhyTech said...

"... and Ken went to China last week"

Notice how coy Ken was in letting this casually slip out? That Ken! He's one cagey dude!

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

FJT, we're all dreamers to one extent or another.

I just happen to be a dreamer who brings:

- almost 2 decades of personal technical and management experience

- a team with 60 years of experience

- recent relevant experience in forensic configuration management

- experience with FAA

- experience with service and support engineering

- and access to DER's, PE's, A&P's, test pilot's, avionics houses, recruiting houses

- I also can bring an alternate airframe that opens up the ability unlock the value of the PW610's and provide real flexibility and options that result in real options and real control over their destiny to the owners

My plan is simple, although there a lot of moving parts - all we need is the first few guys to step up to the plate. Excel-Jet and I have already invested our own money and resources to explore this concept and begin to flesh it out - to the tune of about $50K.

$2M gets the alternate plane done and a solid support concept and information clearinghouse built - another $6-8M buys up a few planes for spares to give the owners breathing room to develop relationships with any vendor or service provider - but one AD between now and this time next year will kill the Eclipse 500 as a viable airframe without someone like me and my team to handle the fixes.

It's not glitzy, it's not glamorous, it is not Verntastic.

It IS workable, practical, and affordable. If you divide the $180K per month across the owners group it works out $1000 or so per month - a small price to pay for alternatives.

But it doesn't have to come from 200 owners, it could come from 2 or 3 for all I care, even 1. That person or persons will own the most valuable thing over the next 6-12 months with a ready supply of serviceable and as-removed spares.

The estimated cost of the program is about 1/4 of the other proposals, and it will cost more than half-a-million less over 9 years than the others.

Are the owners really prepared to welcome Roel back into the fold? Peter Reed? You can bet Mike McConnell will get attached to one of the plans soon as well.

They say that insanity is doing the same thing you have always done while expecting a different result.

If you want a different result, you have to do something different - my plan is different - it places customer needs in line with safety, it provides for experienced management NOW, and it provides the ability for the owners to divorce themselves to a large degree from the Eclipse saga.

I appreciate the concern for my health, sanity, and reputation - but I honestly believe my team and I and Excel-Jet can make this work.

bill e. goat said...

It sounds like you have access to the right team members to pursue another task:

Rather than (or in addition to) taking engines off an EA500, maybe another avenue it so put new instruments into an EA500 (e.g., STC Garmin, or Aspen Avionics, etc), along with the FADEC funtionality that is being discussed. It sounds like the FADEC work will have to be done anyway, if the PWC-610 is to be used on another platform, so the remaining work would be to do an ethnic cleansing of the flight deck.

I think more of the owner community would participate in this, than the move to the Excel jet. (Another HUGE plus for your organization: the expertise gained in this conversion, could also be applied to other airframes/larger markets).


julius said...


you are speaking of an unfulfilled love, blinded by love...

I agree that is very difficult to overcome - the first love to an absolute wrong person.
That is the real crucial point.

Roel is from Amsterdam - perhaps he knows these shops...

Harlow comes around with Peter (good old times with hope), Col.P with RiP (he tried his best and finally got the EASA cert - great), and
Ken - will he invite his friend wedge (he offered these vernastic fpj-prizes) to support his victims -
kindergarten, kindergarten!!!!


fred said...

billy :

i have been working is the giant-joke called "Economy" for the last 15 years ...

the only one sure thing i can tell you about current crisis :

Economy is a human activities , therefor something nearly as unpredictable than human nature itself ...
so when you see or hear some bozo stating "we are going to do this and that ; results is going to that and this ; etc..."

please put them in the category "lips talking without brain"

if you want to have some more precisions about situation in USA , please read Schumpeter or/and have a look a EAC-mess :

lots have been screwed , lied , cheated , etc...etc...

some ask for more ...

you see : human nature is nearly unpredictable !! ;-)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

BEG, I believe the E5C leadership has already sought out a modification house with that capability and experience - not sure if it was for that specific expertise or not though - truth is that lobotomizing the EA-500 creates poetntially far more issues than it actually solves - depends on whether critical vendors remain solvent and viable and willing.

Other owners are exploring a whole host of potential approaches that are too numerous and complex to mention here at this time other than to say moves are afoot and some of them are very well thought out.

Dave said...

Other owners are exploring a whole host of potential approaches that are too numerous and complex to mention here at this time other than to say moves are afoot and some of them are very well thought out.

I'm glad to hear that. The best thing the owners can do is to decide for themselves what the best course of action for them to take individually is and not let themselves get pressured into something where they could end up worse off than they already are.

airtaximan said...


2875 Bricklins were built in Canada from 1974 to 1976. My Bricklin is vin #2840, so it was one of the last ones produced. It is in excellent condition. The only problem is that the gas gauge does not work. The gas tank was replaced by the previous owner, and I dont think they grounded the gage at the tank. It even has the original tires from 1975!

One of the great thing about the Bricklin is that with the exception of the body, they were made with all Detroit parts. The engine and tranny are Ford, Alternator is AMC, muffler is Camaro, etc. This makies getting parts a breeze. You just goto your local junk yard or PepBoys. There is still one dealer located in Virginia. If you were ever to get into a fender bender, you could get replacement body parts from him. I purchased the new center console from him. Included with the car is a list of nearly ever part of the car. This list tells the code number for the car and what car the part originally came from.

The car runs perfect. The air doors work perfect and the car dives like a champ. The gull wing doors DO NOT leak water into the car when it rains.

The car has power steering, power brakes and power doors. How many cars out there have power doors... not many. This is how the air doors work. There is a regular door lock on the drivers side. You can lock or unlock the doors from this just like a regular car. When the doors are unlocked, you hold in the switch (similar to a power window switch) in the up position and the door raises. If you press the switch with the doors locked, nothing happens. It only takes about 1 second for the door to shoot up. There is also a button on the passengers side to raise the passenger side door. However there is no physical lock on the passenger side, the drivers side exterior lock opperates both doors. Once inside you can close the doors with another set of buttons in the center consule. They close in about 1 second too. There is a lockout switch inside the car. You flip this switch while driving and the doors will not operate at all. This prevents them from opening if you accidentally hit the switch open while driving. The windows in a bricklin roll down all the way. In a delorean the windows do not roll down.

I dont think the car has the original radio, but I am not sure. The radio in the car is a digital one with a cassette player. I have replaced the original speakers with Pioneer ones(still have the original).

All of the electricals work great (lights wipers, horn). The car starts, runs, and drives excellent. This car is a real attention getter, so you had better be prepaired to answer alot of questions about it when you park it somewhere.

The only thing i did not like about the car is that the trunk leaked in water. It sure did run like a champ though.

After the Brickin manufacturer's receivership, George Byers and Sol Shank of Consolidated Motors, an automotive liquidator from Columbus, Ohio, purchased the majority of the parts and remaining cars left on the line. These cars surfaced later, completely assembled from left over parts, and were sold as 1976 models.

During production, the Bricklin manufacturer was constantly in debt, and had relied on provincial government support to keep the company running. One reason is the vehicle was estimated to cost $16000 to build, but were sold for $5000 each to the Dealers, so the company lost the equivalent of over 2 Bricklins for every car built.

To further complicate problems, Richard Hatfield was discovered to have secretly funded the failing company in order to win re-election. After the funding scandal, the government turned down a request for an additional $10 million to keep the company running. The factory shut down, and was put into receivership on September 25th, 1975.[3]

I wonder if the Briklin ever suffered a re-engine/re-design?

WhyTech said...

"One of the great thing about the Bricklin is "

A derivative of the Yugo IIRC.

airtaximan said...

WT, no way... are you serious?

WhyTech said...

"WT, no way... are you serious?"

Yes, I'm serious ... but I got it backwards: the Yugo is a derivative of the Bricklin...

.. in sort of a round about way: after Bricklin failed as a car company, Malcom Bricklin tried again by becoming the U.S. distributor for Yugo. So, the two have much in common.

airtaximan said...

sure do... one made in the back woods of Canada, the other made in the back woods of Yugoslavia... both Communist countries of course.

the cars look nothing alike, and the Briklin was a pretty interesting concept, made from available parts, except the body.

I just learned that a Texas company has the DeLorean rights and may be startng up small production runs again - not joking.

WhyTech said...

"both Communist countries of course."

Great to see that you have a sense of humor!

bill e. goat said...

Thanks for the info on the 162- I just read the last few posts on the previous "page".
Also to EDT, (I wondered what the helicopter references were about:)

bill e. goat said...

Thanks for the info on Bricklin (and also for what the "12" in Delorean DMC-12 stands for ($12K price target).

I've been working on the following post, and had contemplated doing a "homework assignment" on Bricklin- thank you for posting yours!

Back in 1981-ish,

$27770 Porsche 911

$16258 Corvette
(Hmmm, this was the year of the move from St Louis to Kentucky- produced in BOTH places for 2 months- also, the all-time high production, around 53000 units).

$38,000 Porsche 928

Wiki: Porsche 928
(This was said to be more aerodynamic going backwards, than forwards. I'm not sure what that means- either it was really slick both ways, or really goofed up).

$35910 BMW 633

About that Delorean DMC-12...

"Originally, the car's rear-mounted power plant was to be a Citro├źn Wankel rotary engine, but was replaced with a French-designed and produced PRV (Peugeot-Renault-Volvo) fuel injected V6"
Well, that probably says about all that needs to be said. (But I won't let that stop me:)

That funky V-6 powered the last Alfa Romeo's in the USA.

(Maybe some correlation there, as Peugeot, and Renault, also disappeared from the USA about the same time).

"The car was named the DMC-12 because of its original price of $12,000. New DMC-12s had a suggested retail price of $25,000"

Say, that sounds rather familiar !

"DeLorean's comparison literature noted that the DMC-12 could achieve 0–60 mph (0–96 km/h) in 8.8 s, respectable for the early 1980s, but Road & Track magazine clocked the car at 10.5 seconds."
Hmmm, didn't quite meet the original objectives? (EAC did better on performance, Delorean did better on the equipment list).

$25,000 Delorean DMC-12"
(Other alternatives were the Porsche 924 and 944, which bracketed the DMC-12 both price wise and chronologically, and maybe some Mercedes models)
"Automotive (?Aircraft?) icon, snappy dresser and FBI target John Z. De Lorean (?Wedge?)"

Time Magazine

"Our break-even point was about 10-12,000 cars a year. Yet, three marketing studies we made indicated that if you price a car over $20,000 there ia a precipitous falloff in sales - that unit sales would be somewhere around 6000."

"John was less interested in building cars than he was in building a conglomerate..."

"John was so full of personal vengeance against General Motors and had such a burning desire to build his empire (that he let it get in his way). When asked how big he wanted to be, he'd say, 'As big as General Motors.' Everything he did was to throw it back in Gm's face."
(Subsitute "wedge" and "Cessna" for amusing an amusing- and obvious- outcome).

"John doesn't like financial controls and that became very uncomfortable for me (so I left). His approach to being over budget was to change the budget."

"we had plenty of money and so there was no reason (to do it quickly). The original objective was to have $90 million and we ended up with $250 million. But the way the money was deployed is what caused the problem - and John had full control of that."

"The real crunch came on January 5th, 1982 when the company had to cancel a stock issue that DeLorean had hoped would raise about $27 million."
Can you spell I-P-O (how about, D-E-N-I-E-D).

"Reflecting on all the difficulties of the past few years, one of DeLorean's previous executives said this about his former boss: "John's not a dumb man. But looking back, he's made all the mistakes Bricklin did."

Delorean History
(Disruptive Cash Incinerator, circa 1980 style)

John DeLorean
(January 6, 1925 - March 19, 2006; 4 years to the day...)

On a Clear Day You Can See GM
(I never read it, but given contemporary headlines, ought to)
Another couple of fun reads:
Old grainy reprint on Delorean

"Involvement in a lost cause"
(DeLorean in this case, not EAC :)

Orville said...

Hey - looks what's flying - S/N 260!!

Orville said...

Pretty interesting route of flight too!

airtaximan said...


of course I do - haven't you been readng my posts?

When Qubec succeeds in spliting off and becoming its own country, there will be even MORE in common with the former Yugoslavia.


Finally weighing in said...

Give me a friggin break!!!

Newly formed Eclipse Jet LLC announced today that Roel Pieper, who heads ETIRC Aviation and who succeeded Vern Raburn as CEO of bankrupt Eclipse Aviation, is joining the start-up firm as one of five board directors with equal voting rights. The firm also announced that Raul Segredo, president and founder of Miami-based Avionica, and John Cracken, managing director of Dallas-based private equity firm Cracken, Harkey & Co LLC, will join Pieper with Mike Press of St. Louis-based SP Jets and Mason Holland, chairman of Benefit Focus, as directors.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Fred,
You have confirmed my (unpublished) thesis, that economics is as much of a social science as a mathematical science.

I will grant that the mathematical part is deterministic (known input = known results). But I hold to the notion that the social science part is not deterministic (knwon imput = unknown results).

"please read Schumpeter"
Hot Dang!
One of my "homework assignments" has paid off! I'd come across this guy a couple of weeks ago when researching your one of your posts. I thought his final conclusions were, ah, a bit "disruptive" to post, but enjoyed the near-term applications! Thanks for the direction.

(I would advise our fellow bloggers to consider Fred's posts carefully- what might seem like a simple sentence or two to references I am unfamiliar with, are often deep insights, elegantly summarized).

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

I hope everyone is recognizing the same pre-emptive business plan approach being taken by the various would-be EAC 3.0's.

Which is more important right now?

Naming former failed executives to you Board which is populated by nobody with real aviation manufacturing or service experience?

Giving press releases and interviews?

Or actually developing a series of working alternatives with immediate, short, mid and long term objectives to meet the needs of owners whether they want out, need parts, or want to have control over their destiny?

FreedomsJamtarts said...

Sorry CWMR, your plan is doomed, because you are using intelligence, logic and integrity in a environment of stupidity, hubris and corruption.

Their plan is also doomed to failure, the difference is; your plan cost you and your colleague a little time and travel, whereas the Revenge of the Eturd will cost the position holders their shirt and their self esteem (again).

Has anyone else noticed that nearly every person involved with building the EA500 comes here with their own little tale of quality escapes, or downright defective manufacturing. Probably all liers of course. Aren't we all.

Shadow said...

CW: observing the past behavior of the owners, they're more interested in press releases and having failed execs on board than gravitate toward a realistic proposition. It's unfortunate, but largely true for this gullible group.

After all, why would they leave their fantasy world now? More smoke and mirrors from the guy behind the curtain is so much more appealing to them.

Jackrabbit said...

I've been waiting for someone to sum up the problem, so we know exactly what to fix.
There are a plethora of problems, but what would list as the top 3?

1) Culture of Greed
"I want more, More, MORE! And I want it NOW"
2) Feed the (credit) Machine
"Everyone's doing it" (no personal responsibility)
3) Crony Capitalism
Co-opted government/lax regulation

you see : human nature is nearly unpredictable !! ;-)
Sometimes human nature can be very predictable. Madison Avenue, Hedge Funds, and others thrive on our predictability.

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

Ok jack...you've got a point...!;-)

i should have added "WHEN" you can predict it , it is almost always for the bad of our primitive instincts ...

fred said...

Billy :

thanks for the last part of your post ...

but honestly i prefer to remain that UFO not really making too much sens and a bit annoying ... ;-)

you see , there is one good side in being a schmuck = you can only surprise peoples !! ;-))

mountainhigh said...

Shadow, Freedom, ATM, Fred ... you've all summed up the problem. A lot of the owners cannot tolerate considering a well thought out plan from industry professionals. This is definitely a reflection on the owners themselves!

Remember these guys (as well as investors/ vendors) went along with one of the biggest disasters in aviation history. And now they are back for more! By design, EAC sucked 2-3 billion out of the market knowing this would block other legitimate, honest programs.

At this point I'd think some of the owners would have more respect for GA ... than to go down this path again. Guess not!

fred said...

i forgot :

in the homework , you could read Noam Chomsky ...

i think he is too extreme , but it's kind of refreshing to have a look on the other side of the mirror ...!

fred said...

oh yes , moutain ....

i have no doubts that coldwet can make it ...

as sure as i am that later , when CW would make things works , 1 , 2 or more owners would come to see him and say something like "in the time of the great Vern , we were promised this and this ... i(we) wonder where it is ??? "

it is not CW , the dreamer

if you start with something "rotten" (word too strong) in the beginning :chances to finish with something good , are at best remote ...!

"Some" owners went into the plot for the wrong reasons ...

this is where it is "rotten"

Jackrabbit said...

BEG, Fred:

As number 4 I would add APATHY. Most would not think of this as a "cause" of the crisis because it is a sin of omission rather than comission, but it is a very important enabler. Many people were either lazy or too trusting of the "system" for a long time.

There are a lot of people who will be doing their *homework* now.

fred said...

jack :

on a second thought ...

i would put in "the list" only one thing :

extract from the "american way" of life or "american dream" the "buy things you don't need with money you don't have " effect ...

only this would already make a word of difference !

fred said...

jack :

i am not sure Apathy is really what matters ...
off-course , it has some degrees of importance ...

i would think it is more apathy to the "keep them busy thinking they can make a fortune , for them NOT to see how we conduct their life "

in that , the good old "panen & circences " is still very well working , 2000 years + after being said ...

mountainhigh said...

Looks like CWM is hoping a handful of owners are rational, want to salvage some investment, and might rather have an alternate airframe.

I'd advise any owners wanting to look at options to contact CWM confidentially. Just to avoid the heavy-handed tactics which appear to be occurring within the various owners groups.

And agree with Dave. It benefits owners to review all options. If some small number of owners would prefer an alterate airframe, they'd certainly want to do a site visit... sit in the cabin, check the fit and finish, talk to the test pilots, talk to the designer... usual stuff.

fred said...

yes , moutain ...

to summarize your idea (and dave's)

do what you should have done in the first place :

an act of buying in a reasonable manner !

mountainhigh said...

CWM you're a smart guy. You picked a talented designer to back you up. He's put a twin-engine and an SEJ into the air. Bornhofen is passionate, he's a throwback to an earlier day, from what I've heard he's all about the engineering, and loathes hype. FYI, I saw the Sport-Jet fly ... a thing of beauty!

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Great reminder Mountainhigh.

As stated in the proposal I gave to Shane, we are more than willing to do that, in-person, over the phone or via e-mail.

I am not willing to say who we have been in contact with (don't want to put anyone on the spot unless and until they are willing to publicly endorse the plan), but we are in regular contact with several owners of note.

These guys deserve answers and a realistic/workable plan. The problem is the clock is ticking, both on the auction, as well as being able to dive deep into the support concept and get the engineering and tooling completed for the Sport-Jet 610 - every day nothing is underway is another day without needed help when the next AD hits, or the next part breaks, or if some shmuck ends up with the assets.

Anyone wanting a more private/confidential conversation can always reach me at ColdWetMack@gmail.com

Jackrabbit said...

Apathy and ignorance go hand in hand. In any time or place, there are those who will prey on that ignorance.

Consider: Why do we (as citizens) allow private financial institutions to grow to a size that is "too big to fail?"

To understand what "too big to fail" is, you have to understand systemic risk. If more people had this understanding and were more active politically, we would not be bailing out big banks and AIG today.

Private companies (of any type) should not be allowed to pile on risk when their company is "too big to fail."

Basic banking functions (savings and checking accounts, etc.) are commodity businesses that make almost no money. Big banks in the US have used their "captive" banking clients to push non-banking products and to justify their "too big to fail" excesses. The banking system has evolved to maximize bank profits, not minimize risk (ironic since people associate "bank" with "safety").

WhyTech said...

"but what would list as the top 3?"

I would add as #4:

4. Catch me if you can mindset: anything is OK as long as I dont get caught.

gadfly said...


“Apathy and ignorance” . . . Which is worse?

“I don’t know, and I don’t care!”


Shane Price said...


It's not often I have to say something which I believe to be truly BIG. In fact, I can't honestly remember doing this before.


The reports that the EOG (Eclipse Owners Group) has endorsed the Press Investor Group are totally false. It seems the PIG is channeling Vern.

Trust me on this one, and act (or not) as appropriate.


ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

FWIW, my plan has been endorsed by the Lollipop Guild, The United Federation of Planets, and priscilla, Queen of the Desert.

Man, these guys just can not help themselves.

If only there were a sane, stable and realistic alternative to the would-be Madoff's in this saga.....one with actual airplane people involved, not a bunch of OPM-Arsonists who stayed in a Holiday Inn Express last night.

I told you there are competing interests and agendas among the Owners themseleves.

Caveat emptor indeed.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

So if Press would misrepresent the approval or endorsement of the owners group, what else might he do to them?

I guess Roel is there to provide a moral compass, when he is not busy sailing the ocean blue or scamming various eastern european governments.


gadfly said...

In a recent discussion of things that make for a successful business, a few things became paramount:

Fairness and trust between employer and employee
Ability of those who design and manufacture
A market
. . . a few other things that would take too long to enumerate just now
And finally, a “product”*!

Somehow, I haven’t seen these things demonstrated among the various proposals . . . and don’t forget that final little item, a “product”*!

In the discussion, it was also mentioned that a single “lie” to employee(s) and/or customer(s) . . . and “all bets are off”.

If, somehow, you can “reverse history”, you “might” have a viable answer, a workable success story . . . but knowing a “whole lot” about human nature, having worked with and for similar companies, managing a fair number of people . . . hiring and firing, etc., and seen at least one of my “bosses” from a long, long time ago, serve time in prison, I don’t smell success in anything related to the little jet from ABQ.

Something as simple as “chemical machining” of a few pounds of aluminum, and removing the major rigidity of the “skin” . . . shows a total lack of understanding of basic design and physics. And that is only the beginning of a long, long list . . . seldom if ever addressed. We could go on and on about mechanical integrity of “rivets” and “holes”, etc., and the use of “Bondo” to bring a skin into conformity of a smooth aerodynamic surface . . . or covering inspection covers with a layer of paint, to imply a clean design . . . and on and on . . . look back at “lie” to customer . . . who does not realize the danger lurking a few microns below the white surface of paint.

You folks can discuss the finances forever . . . except for one basic thing: The little jet will not last “forever”, because of the things that are not being discussed.


(Ignorance is bliss . . . until apathy is superceded by a real life experience with a “loved one”. Or does it take an experience with the “wallet” to get someone’s attention?)

exGNVtech said...

Cold wet I think you have had contact with at least one of the guys that told me about the SN 24 stab issue! I don't know if hell be keen on getting into much detail with you but he actually mentioned you yesterday. I wouldn't worry about a structural appraisal of the stab since the problem involves the entire empennage.Its a small world!

gadfly said...

In proof reading my last comment, after I posted it, I discovered I did not add the note tied to the asterisk . . . but decided to leave it alone. Now, having your attention, I'll add the comment . . . the asterisk referred to a "product", implying a "complete product", something our own little company had to deliver to the customer before being paid . . . yet something entirely lacking with "Eclipse".

Well, you all know the story, yet it seems to be overlooked in most comments . . . yet to a very few of us, stands out like the proverbial "sore thumb"! At last count, not a single complete E500 has ever been produced, let alone "delivered", yet the comments seem to overlook the obvious . . . It is not complete, and there is "no product"!

Hello? . . . Anyone home?

'Guess not!


('Hopefully, the Chinese or the Russians will remove it from our back yard . . . "fat chance".)

(Anyone get the drift of the last comments from the guy from "Gainsville"? . . . as an "A&P", I got his comments, and I'm not all that smart! . . . What's it take to get someone's attention?)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Thanks for the heads up exGNVtech.

Still working to get in touch with owner of that plane, I have a couple structures/design guys who are willing to check it out for a reasonable fee.

Need to determine if this was a quality escape (bad assembly) or if it is a more widespread problem (the whispers about flutter you mentioned).

I have the question in to some folks in the know whom I trust but it may take a few days to get an answer.

If, and I am only saying if, IF it is a widespread or fleetwide issue it will be very serious with nobody to address means of compliance for a possible AD.

Beedriver said...

Complete products are not what the early buyes of the EA500 wanted.

As far as the early buyers wanting a complete product, from what I can tell they were mostly early adopters. early adopters care primarily about being first. having a complete product is not necessary in fact they get a kick out of doing their part to help complete the product. Above all other considerations like making money or any thing else they want to be the first to have the new product. logic is not part of the equation.

After the first 10% of the market is penetrated by the early adopters, you get to the emerging market buyers these are the smart ones who get the jump on the rest of the users. but they insist on a complete product working, supported and doing exactly what they want it to. they really do not care how neat or ground breaking the product is they just want it to do exactly what they bought it for.

Dave said...

The reports that the EOG (Eclipse Owners Group) has endorsed the Press Investor Group are totally false. It seems the PIG is channeling Vern.

Trust me on this one, and act (or not) as appropriate.

Wow! In that case I return my sympathy to Ken et al and I take back my comments related to that. Oh and McRoeljet Announces Their Strategery. Roel is the Eclipse owners buddy - ha!

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Reading Press and Holland's apologetics 101 story about Roel 'reluctantly' taking over as CEO I was reminded of this....


airsafetyman said...

Dave, I did click on the link you thoughtfully provided. The story quotes many of the Fab Five of Eclipse Jet LLC; I have never read so many BS corporate-speak buzzwords strung together in meaningless, incoherent sentences in my life. They may be impressing themselves, but no one else.

airtaximan said...

"Need to determine if this was a quality escape (bad assembly) or if it is a more widespread problem (the whispers about flutter you mentioned)."

rrriiigghhtt... and how does one do this, pre tell?

Beedriver said...

Cold wet,
I like your plan however since I think most of the existing owners are early adopters and are only interested in having the newest neatest thing and what you are offering is something that was considered years ago and is not visionary enough to attract early adopters.

As a result, I do not think you will get many of the existing owners. first of all you are too practical and have a plan that could get you somewhere. AND it is not radical and world changing enough to appeal to them. It takes a showman, sudo visionary like wedge to appeal to them.

However if you can get a few of them to buy in ad supply engines you might succeed in actually building a few jets to prove the validity of your concept.

I wish you luck because you might be the Third or forth group to attack this market niche and thus be successful.

I think the Foxjet was the first attempt to build a personal twin engine jet. If I remember right the type certificate is for sale. I think it got certified.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Well, one first examines the structure of the offending airframe to determine if there is a readily identifiable failure mode or just loose fasteners/mounting hardware.

Then one gets in contact with one's wide array of folks-in-the-know and asks if this or a similar problem has been seen on other planes. Mechanics are a tremendous resource for the engineer who speaks the language and most importantly, listens.

And so on......

The dirty little secret is that much of what appeared from the outside to be possible design issues are largely quality issues - bad asssembly, poor inspection - the kinds of things brought on by the rush to push incomplete tin out the door. You can see it in the paint, the fit and finish, and it is inconsistent - hallmark of a quality issue.

This may well extend into the widely discussed vendor issues, to a degree anyway.

The unfortunate reality of this is that some owners will be faced with ridiculous maintenance efforts while others get off realtively lightly - sound familiar?

Putting the big picture together has been the challenge, and the next challenge will be developing the mechanisms to address the quality issues, supporting the guys with problems now, developing plans for service life extension, etc. This is what has been keeping me busy - and of course, Bob has been working on the integration concept for the 610's on the Sport-Jet airframe to the tune of about $50K.

Of course, the other guys are busy too - fighting over who supports or endorsed what (or not), travelling internationally to seek out "partners", writing press releases, and giving interviews.

I leave it up to the owners to decide where their own interests lie, and to identify who is out to victimize them and who is trying to provide real world options.

bill e. goat said...


(Hide the small children!)

This isn't a blog- it's a circus !!!

"The reports that the EOG (Eclipse Owners Group) has endorsed the Press Investor Group are totally false. It seems the PIG is channeling Vern".

"Trust me on this one, and act (or not) as appropriate."

This is just plain over-the-top CRAZY !!

These crack-heads ain't just guzzling KoolAid- they're ADDICTED !!

About that channeling bit,
I told you Peg was still in the area !!

The May 31, 2008 headline post
"The blog is right, as usual...."

"Stan always said Vern would keep the blog interesting, by doing something stupid. (Yesterday, he did several pretty stupid things, all at the same time)."
(Actually, I would say EVERY day :)

"But get the popcorn ready."

Right On, brother !!

"Pig-in-a-poke is an idiom that refers to a confidence trick originating in the Late Middle Ages, when meat was scarce but apparently rats and cats were not."
PIG In A Poke

How'd that go again, "Rats were plentiful" ?? :)
Credit where credit is due- someone "following their dreams" (or is that the dreams of others !?!)
An honest (?), hardworking (??), professional (???)
Wedgie- this is the gal you need as your COO- she'll get that darn delivery schedule pinned down for real! (Of course, she probably has too many ethics to get involved in EAC, but anyway, here's the KoolAid, er, dope):

The REAL Peg, er, Ana

Regarding that "PIG in the poke"- don't let the rat, er, cat out of the bag (or Wedge either) !!

bill e. goat said...

Stock market tip:
The incinerators have gone cold, and were about worn out anyway, so:
What Wedge Wants for his birthday

"(Our incinerators are used daily by grocery stores, schools, hospitals, warehouses, printers, auto dealers, restaurants, hotels, banks, apartments, manufacturers, oil work camps, rigs, supply ships and many other types of business.")

Dave said...

Mr. Holland offered "Mike, Raul, and I have come to know Roel Pieper through our discussions with him during the course of the Eclipse bankruptcy. Roel reluctantly took over as CEO of Eclipse in July of 2008 and due to the worldwide economic crisis at the end of 2008, he was unable to fund his plan to turn around the company."

So Roel is Evita Peron!:
Don't Cry For Me, Eclipse Customers

It won't be easy
You think it's strange
When I try to explain how I feel
That I still need your love
After all that I've done

You won't believe me
All you will see
Is the CEO you once knew
Although he's dressed up to the nines
At sixes and sevens with you

I had to let it happen
I had to change
Couldn't stay all my life down at heel
Looking out of the window
Staying out of the sun

So I chose freedom
Running around
Trying everything new
But nothing impressed me at all
I never expected it to

Don't cry for me, Eclipse customers
The truth is, I never left you
All through my wild days
My mad existence
I kept my promise
Don't keep your distance

And as for fortune
And as for fame
I never invited them in
Though it seemed to the world they were all I desire

They are illusions
They're not the solutions they promise to be
The answer was here all the time
I love you and hope you love me

Don't cry for me, Eclipse customers

Don't cry for me, Eclipse customers
The truth is I never left you
All through my wild days
My mad existence
I kept my promise
Don't keep your distance

Have I said too much
There is nothing more I could think of to say to you
But all you have to do
Is look at me to know
That every word is true

Black Tulip said...

"We set out to form an enduring company with sustainable competitive advantages, and wanted each of our partners to be positioned to help us capture the assets of Eclipse and then transition our company into a top-notch aircraft OEM maximizing the potential of the Eclipse 500."

Wow, wonder what how the author's highschool English teacher would react.

bill e. goat said...

"wonder what how the author's highschool English teacher would react."

Hmmm...I'm not sure about the author's teachers, but
Wedge is a completely self-taught idiot
"Well, I might be an idiot, but I'm no fool !"
(Wonder if he has a helicopter too? :)
...?? I wonder if you can use FSW to build incinerators ??

Dave said...

McRoeljet=Mr. Holland's Opus?

Dave said...

This e-book was published today and it is already out of date. It even provides a Verntacular quote:
Raburn’s first epiphany was borrowed from Silicon Valley. “Historically in aviation,” he explains, “the term ‘value proposition’ meant that a better plane justified a higher price. In the business I come from, it’s the other way around. You make the product better, and you charge less.” Raburn helped do that for computers, and it’s what his Eclipse Aviation Corporation set out to do for aircraft.
Who is responsible for letting the air out of Vern's head?

fred said...

oh .... guys !

you nearly killed me of laughing ! ;-)

fred said...

Jack :

yes , you are right about banking-system ...

as someone working with monetary-masses i always tried to spread around me that "banks" are such a specific bizz that they shouldn't allowed to play it like normal other business ...

can you imagine ?

a bank that wouldn't put itself on the market as share ?

a bank that wouldn't try to screw every customers for the n$ more ?

a bank that wouldn't do anything else that basic banking activities ...?

a bank where employees having contact with customers would KNOW what banking is about , instead of being commercial-sellers of anything ...?

Finally , a bank own and financed
by its Owners , playing as adults ...

which would mean : credit slightly higher in term of price , to allow banks to live on their activities ...

BECAUSE this is the system-shock we are experiencing now ...

banks were allowed to pile-up debts , their own and other debts ! not because it is the way it is supposed to work ...

only for greed ,in one side ! and power in the other side ...

leading to shamble like AIG ... how in hell any sane person was allowed to insure such a pile of debts that i am not sure USA can reimburse in a single generation without printing franklin's like mad ???

that a very good revenge of nature !!

to have fake this , fake that , illusions here , illusions there : credit became such a utility ...

that it backfire in crunching the very system place to build fake-richnesses !!!

who said that Nature hasn't got any humor ?

ps: since i follow this EAC saga , i came to the conclusion that it is a very good microcosm of what USA and modern world of "creative" finances became ...

airtaximan said...


I get it now, if its a design problem its different than a quality problem - BUT, my point was, you could have a widespread quality problem, and how would you know? It does not have to appear in the same fastener or part on any plane.

The QMS seems to have been an afterthought, and this would tell you there are widespread quality issues, that differ from plane to plane.

Flutter? One would think this has been seen by more than 1 pilot, if it was a design problem...

PS. I admire your patience and politeness

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

ATM, if I were not serious about this it would be easy to blow off any questions or just snap back the easy answers - I am truly serious about this and I am trying to demonstrate that.

I have been in contact with names I can't relese for confidentiality reasons but which are truly in-the-know from the design, support, vendor and operator communities.

Quality problems like this are typically not related to the QMS per-se - I know who developed the original quality system at Eclipse - top notch guy - the breakdown occurs when dedicated quality people are pushed aside or forced to leave and are replaced by folks with career ambitions or no understanding of the part Quality plays in the overall manufacturing and certification scheme. I have seen that at more than one OEM BTW.

When you lobotomize the Quality Management System by placing yes-men into it, and constantly promising the good inspectors you will fix the recurring issues it damages the ability of the Quality system to perform its necessary function - and it reduces the focus on quality within the assembly and fab teams since they see QA has been emasculated.

It can be a never ending spiral.

My suspicion, backed up by some recent intel is that this is a quality issue but that does not make it any less important for the effected owner, and anyone else who has simply not discovered this or another quality escape on their plane....yet. If FAA gets involved it could ground the fleet until a fix is developed - and there is no one to develop the fix right now.

One new focus I am developing for my concept is how to locate and fix these quality escapes in an organized way as opposed to just sitting back and waiting for them to show themselves. I gain new insight almost every day thanks to communication from the various folks in Eclipseland - some of the intel is a bit intimidating frankly, but I remain confident that the guys who want to keep flying will probably be able to do so - if they get the right kind of help.

I can say that the guys who want out or would consider an alternate airframe also need the right kind of help but we have gone about as far as we can reasonably go without some firm commitments.

Gotta say I am a bit disappointed the E5C leadership has not shared the concept with the rank and file - not really surprised, but a little disappointed. It remains the only plan that deals with the widest needs of the owner community as a whole as well as individually.

In the words of the Doobie Brothers, it might be time to be 'Takin It to the Street'.

bill e. goat said...

I concur with your general assessment of tail plane issues- I would suspect the fleet has thousands of hours, and since it's a fixed stab, there isn't a moving linkage to wear out- sounds like an assembly problem. There is usually enough "compliance" / "stretchiness" / elasticity in a control linkage to aggravate flutter, but in the case of a loose horizontal stab, I don't think the "looseness" could be more than a few thousands of an inch (typ for a loose fitting perhaps), and the "system" is V-E-R-Y inelastic compared to flight controls, which I don't think would be enough to produce flutter (also, the relative rotational inertia of a stab, versus an elevator, would make the frequency too low unless excited with supersonic airflow). On the other hand, fatigue life would be adversely affected with a loose fit. Well, that's the end of my wild ass guessing (for now!). I look forward to more details if they are available.

CWMOR- I also have been impressed with your composure, as well as technical prowess.

Charm School for the rich and famous

...and for the rest of us

Wedge's Charm School Results
"How VERY rude !!"

bill e. goat said...

Curiosity got my goat (ahem);
That cute "how rude" kid?
Jodie Sweetin
Speed, boose, jail, etc.

That wouldn't happen to, oh, say, "the Beav", would it?
(Well, he is 60...maybe he just woke up...and he did work for Jim Beam...)

Jerry Mathers ("The Beaver")
(Not bad, for Hollywood. Still, not quite what I would have expected from Mr. and Mrs. Cleaver)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

If you guys don't stop I'll blush and lose all my street cred.

Thanks for the kind words and suggestions/questions - it is helping formulate a solid plan.

I have opened this up to a two-front engagement - will be interesting to see how it goes.

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

I am truly serious about this and I am trying to demonstrate that.

I'm sorry, but I think this plan is stillborn.

You can't maintain the existing fleet for very long on a collection of cannibalized hangar queens. There will always be those parts that are already worn out on the queens that every plane in the fleet needs so this "support" doesn't last very long.

Providing used parts is not "support" in any case. This presumes the design of the airplane is stable and adequate, something no one here should be willing to bet on. So true "support" means on going engineering and that takes access to the data you don't want to own by "winning" the bid.

Lastly, the Sport Jet II with twin PW610s is a fantasy exceeding the original Eclipse concept of a $775K jet. You won't make weight and the experimental category limitations (51% build, no FIKI, no RVSM) are death to what this market segment wants. If an owner wants an experimental jet, they can go build one right now and not cripple it by requiring the use of donor Eclipse parts. Trying to reuse the engines will turn out to be a false economy and owners would have been better off just using the SP design as is with the existing engine it is designed for.

In short, I don't find any part of your plan reasonable or executable. It is a nice thought exercise, but that is about it.

So when does this auction actually take place? Is there a date? It has been 4 months since bankruptcy, how long does this take? By the time this is settled, most of the fleet will be AOG and there won't be enough parts regardless of *any* plan!

airtaximan said...


something tells me its not that tough to find the owners, directly... like from the FAA database... its free and current.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Flyger, I appreciate you keep saying it, with passion, but the weight is not an issue in my mind nor in the mind of the guy designing it - a guy who has by-the-way designed, built, weighed, and flown several other airframes with similar design concepts.

FWIW, consider two less seats, 3 feet less cabin, structure for FL250 vs FL410, smaller wing, etc. It is not the issue you wish to make it out be.

The cannibalization component, if you fully read what I propose, is the immediate portion of a plan that in total addresses immediate, short, mid and long term issues - the rest deals with PMA, STC, Part 145 repair parts, owner supplied parts, new or willing vendors, support/maintenance providers, etc., all the way out through working on a service life extension program to remove the 10 calendar year limitation.

ATM, yes the owner info is on the FAA site, I still have to contact them, see if they are willing to cooperate and if they are interested in an objective evaluation of the problem.

Also chasing this up through other avenues to see what the real issue is for this plane and potentially others.

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Flyger, I appreciate you keep saying it, with passion, but the weight is not an issue in my mind

All the critic comments didn't bother Vern very much, either. You seem to be doing the same thing he did, trying to discredit critics by assigning their comments as not based on logic, but passion or emotion. You are taking a path he has already been down.

Hopefully you won't waste anyone's money and just your time. At least that is better than Vern.

airtaximan said...


I think he was sincerely complimenting you, buddy.

Your concern, viewpoint and opinions have been noted, addressed as best he could, and not dismissed.

I think you make som very valid points, and I even see the Bornhoffen plane/plan as crazy, high risk - but its on the table IF the owners want it. What's wrong with that?

CW even rejected the idea of cleaning up the Exceljet website...

Seems like evryone could find out the risks... if they chose to take the risk (again) sobeit..

Dave said...

Only In New Mexico

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Flyger, how many aircraft have you designed, built, weighed and flown? You yourself,

As a thought exercise let's establish some credentials for contuing this discussion.

I have designed several sportplanes myself, of mixed construction. I have not picked one to build yet but I am very familiar with the characterstics of conventional and unconventional designs, in both metal and composites - I have just under 20 years in industry and have spanned the range from 6,000 to 70,000 lb MTOWS.

Bob Bornhofen has a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Parks College, and has designed and built three different designs, one twin, two SEJ's - all experimental, all using the same basic concept (molded composite airframe, one fiberglass, two carbon - with metal wings and empennage).

I have heard your critique, I have given several explanations as to why I am not concerned about it - all based on logic, which is far more than Vern and crew ever did. They simply dismissed criticism out of hand, no explanation, no open discussion.

Once again, the airframe is physically smaller, the wing is smaller, the cabin is shorter by an entire seating row (and there are two less seats), the structure need only support FL250 vs 410 - these are but a few reasons I have repeatedly provided to clearly address the weight that you have yet to acknowledge even once.

And yet you continue to bring it up and suggest that this concept is somehow Vernesque - when it is you who have offered no back-up for your opinion - it is you who is using charged words like 'lie', 'fantasy', etc., with no substantiation beyond back of the napkin regurgitations of rough weight ranges for other planes - none of which are directly comparable.

For what it's worth, all of Bornhofen's previous designs came in under their design weight bogey - all of them. And they all have performed exceptionally well. That is history, not pie-in-the-sky, not marketing hype - just fact.

I have said before, it is fine if you wish to reject the actual history and real-world experience that led to the projection for this modified design, but admit you are doing so.

bill e. goat said...

I find it a little "icky" to contemplate tracking owners down via the FAA website- I would assume all of them are aware of our blog. In fact, I would assume everyone on the planet is (Dr. Evil laugh goes here). Well, almost anyway.

But, the owners might still have questions, so I'd propose a website with the details. This wouldn't take much to establish, either cost or time wise (a few days, I should think).

I am curious about the time line too- seems like someone kindly posted there was a "30 days for this" and "60 days for that" provisions- I think that "clock" started on March 4, 2009 (Headline post, "Finally, Eclipse
Aviation Corporation is no more").

I believe the owners have NOTHING AT ALL to say about this- I would assume the "senior note holders" will call the shots on EAC assets, so CWMOR's proposal can progress on a dual track with EAC liquidation / solidification / gaseous dispersion (think "Avio Vaporware":).

I would assume the owner's group activity is aimed at getting their airplanes updated by EAC v3.0 with subsidies from future profits, and are doing their part by helping with start-up financing and a good will campaign.

To review one of the comments on the headline post a couple weeks ago;
"...the Judge in Delaware granted the Senior Note Holders 'Motion to Convert' today, Wednesday 4th March 2009. 19 employees are retained to Friday 20th March as caretakers."
(Well, that's probably the only "schedule event" Eclipse ever met).

I appreciate Flyger's concerns about weight- there is always a lot of weight gain when going from experimental to certified. If it stays experimental, it might stay light, but if it goes certified, it will pick up a lot more sales.

Thinking about our friends with EA500's, I'd imagine they will be sitting on their ass(ets). I'd just let this thing play out. They could probably sell their airplane now, for $800K-1.0M or so, complete. Or, take the engines off, and sell it for $500K, and move to the Excel. It would seem that if they want an to move to the experimental category, it would be better for them to sell their airplanes complete, and just buy a used motor for the Excel, especially since it's already designed for one. I'd say there is -literally- more risk involved going from certified to experimental, than there is in going from two to one fanjet engines.

I don't have the numbers to back either up either proposition; it's just based on my observations of the number of changes -required- when going from experimental to certified.

Also, even to pass a 150 hour functionality and reliability FAA test is a daunting task. The certified airplanes don't gain weight, and expense, during the cert process because airframers want to add weight and cost- they do so because of design deficiencies uncovered during testing, and to comply with FAA regs. And this does result in a better and safer airplane. And a more expensive airplane. I think most of the EA500 crowd is willing to stick with the extra expense.

I think there are two, more fruitful, avenues available, at this point on the flight path of the casual arrow of time*

1) Aggressive marketing the Excel Jet to all markets- not the very limited EA500 defector/converter market. Take advantage of the absence of competing (new) EA500's, take advantage of the quicker delivery (don't wait for production to restart), take advantage of the cost difference
(built it yourself). Those are the marketable advantages. I just don't see any need to shackle this project to the vagaries of the EA500 outcome, I fear it is a diversion of effort and focus. I think it would capture more sales with aggressive open marketing, rather than chasing an elusive, and (understandably, for now) non-committal, limited group of current EA500 owners.

2) Those owners that don't want to defect/convert, will want, and need, a new avionics suite. Unless...Unless the Eclipse factory provides Avio support. That is a gamble for anyone wanting to start up an AECS (Avio Ethnic Cleansing Service).

Here's another edition of:

I figure taking an existing avionics suite (say, Garmin), and engineering it into a new airframe (say, EA500. BUT, come to think of it, could also be Excel) would take about three dozen "hot shots", and the extra cost would be worth it, and in fact, mandatory for a successful outcome. These guys are going to be $100 per hour consultant / contract folks. And it's going to take 18 months. And probably some royalty payments to keep them from billing overtime.

36 engineers/DER/software/test/etc.
x $200K per year
x 1.5 years
= $10.8M

To do the FADEC conversion,
18 software coders
x $200K per year
x 1.0 year
= $3.6M

Throw in a 50% fudge factor for things that go wrong, prototyping equipment (color copies, free soda, free Psychic Ana counseling sessions, free ant farm collector kits, etc. etc etc).

(10.8 + 3.6) x 1.5 = $21.6M, and 18 months.

That's a fair amount of coin, and a fair amount of time. The risk to this development project would be, frankly, the factory would restart, and negate the need. Of course, The factory could restart, and then go bankrupt again, even before this hypothetical 18 months is up. So there is a lot of risk in this undertaking. I would say, a lot of opportunity too, particularly to port the developed system to other airframes.

Disruptive thought of the day- perhaps market it to EAC v3.0- save them the expense of doing their own avionics development in house, and just "sub it out" to CWMOR, inc. I think THIS is THE HOT TICKET, myself. That way, CWMOR, inc., has a steady customer demand- it's just that one way it's the factory, the other way it's the individual operators.

(Not to mention potentially HUNDREDS of other customers operating various experimental, and older certified, airframes).

(*what would my English teacher say? Probably, I hope he did better in science than he did in English. She would be disappointed...)
Arrow of time

Second most disruptive though of the day:

"There do seem to be good reasons to suppose that space-time is discrete in some sense at the Planck Scale. Theories of quantum gravity suggest that there is a minimum length beyond which measurement can not go, and also a finite number of significant degrees of freedom. In canonical quantization of gravity, volume and area operators are found to have discrete spectra, while topological quantum field theories in 2+1 dimensions have exact lattice formulations. At the same time, the mathematics of continuous manifolds seem to be increasingly important. Topological structures such as instantaneous and magnetic monopoles appear to play their part in field theory and string theory. Can such things be formulated on a discrete space?"
In other words...

Discrete Time-Space

**"The sort of general malaise that only the genius posess and the insane lament."

Dr. Evil
"You know, we have to stop."
(I wonder if that's the line the BoD used on Wedge?)

1) Ken went to China...
2) China is working on a manned space program...
3) Nobody has seen Wedge for a while...
Moon Unit Zappa
(Hmmm, nice Evil Lair).

The OTHER Moon (Unit) Zappa

Wedge holds Job Fair for EAC 3.0
(CWMOR, do you "Got an Evil Crew" lined up, too? :)
...Will the staff be..."downsized" ???

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

BEG, the evil minions club has been largely identified.

I appreciate your thoughts as well but at this point Excel-Jet is not aiming to certify the Sport-Jet 610 - there is no value in that as we are only aiming for a relatively small number of adopters, not likely more than 2 dozen, perhaps as few as 5.

The Sport-Jet II could certainly be certified down the road - but that is Bob's business, not mine.

WhyTech said...

"would take about three dozen "hot shots","


From which orifice did you pull this no.?

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

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

As a thought exercise let's establish some credentials for contuing this discussion.

The laws of physics don't care what your credentials are. This is a ploy to basically end the argument by saying you are better than me without addressing the issues. Your logic doesn't depend on my credentials.

Given all your vast experience, it should be no trouble at all to produce a detailed weight budget for a 4 place twin jet that is pressurized, known ice, air conditioned, glass PFD/MFD, >1,000nm IFR range while carrying at least 600 pounds. How much are the tires, brakes, struts, wings, electrical system, radar, autopilot, lighting, fuel system, engines, controls, paint, interior, windows, door, deice system, instruments, avionics, antennas, etc.

If you have such data, present it and let the sanity checking begin. I, and people I know, will be able to instantly spot if the budget makes sense or not (and it won't given that the 45% load factor is fantasy). If you don't have a weight budget, then what are your weight estimates are based on, exactly?

My rough analysis says your empty weight will be around 3,600 pounds, your load factor around 35%. If you then push up the gross to 6,000 to overcome those issues, you are right back at EA500 weights and factors but with overstressed structure, wheels, tires, etc. And this is *IF* you manage to be among the very best at composite design!

People without data like to tell you they know a lot but don't tell you what it is. People with data show you the data.

I'm sorry if this comes across as harsh but this industry is so full of misguided dreamers and half truths that everybody has to be held to a high standard, especially in the wake of Eclipse.

bill e. goat said...

Ha ha, I was almost sucked into a one-way discourse.

I would enjoy discussing the topic-
please post your estimates, with qualifying conditions, and we can discuss the differences.

(And feel free to use any orifice you'd like :)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Not harsh Flyger, just stubborn.

Good designers work within the laws of physics, as Bornhofen as done before, more than once.

You continue to refuse to acknowledge this - he has already done this, several times, and the weight estimate is based on that real-world, been there done that experience.

My point about credentials was not to shut you up but to provide some comparison so that casual readers can decide where to place their trust, nothing more.

I think your continued refusal to acknowledge that real-world experience and knowledge of designing and building real-world aircraft is clear enough for anyone who reads.

airtaximan said...


no way

"They could probably sell their airplane now, for $800K-1.0M or so, complete"


airtaximan said...


the industry is jaded, for sure. I'd heed Flygrer, but just make the point that its an option, transparent as it is, to anyone willing to take the risks.

I do not think you are hyping Exceljet - yu seem impressed with it, and somehow, feel it might serve some EA50 guys well... I personally disagree, BUT,

I also do not care, and think if you are making a performance statement, you at least believe it, and its probably based on something.

Vern on the otherhand, made so many outlandish promises, and NEVER cared about the realities, that putting you in the same boat is well, really insulting.

Flyger, you make a good point - the spec is aggressive... and CW addressed it.

From personal experience, providing a weight and balance inventory, is asking for a lot. Embraer, for example never even spec'ed an empty and MTOW even in their contracts.

I would not be surprised IF CW balks, and I would not be surprised if someone provides a spreadheet.. the numbers could be just made up - and NOPE, you would not see it in the items you listed.

Finally, why not just accept the weights provided?

The real risk in execution risk delivering any plane from Excel.

They are a garage shop, and they are underfunded, and they have a lot of delivery risk. I am not bad mouthing them, I admire Bornhoffem and perhap he is the next Cirrus...

But all that entails risk... a lot of risk. A lot. Ask CW... he'll just agree.

airsafetyman said...

Coldfish, The Excel seems a good idea if pursued with a willing engine partner with the idea of getting the airplane certified. Aren't there any European engine manufacturers that are interested? The Eclipse, as is, is a day, VFR- weather airplane that is quite flyable in that role. In truth, most of the owner/pilots are, or should be, day, VFR-weather pilots as well, even though they can file IFR to the high flight levels and pretend to be Steve Canyon. They can play wih their toys while the adults figure out how to make the avionics and icing system work. There is no hurry. These dire tales of having to cannibalize the fleet to keep flying are designed to stampede the owners into parting with even more of their money.

airtaximan said...


I hear you, BUT, reminds me of something I heard today...

An investor friend of mine said his buddy decided yesterday to go "all cash"...

I said, why so soon?

Seriously, some Ea50 owners will think its over, realize its ove, be PO'ed their support will not be as they dreamed and want to get out... and psell off their parts/planes.

Others will wait, and eventually, realize their cheapo-jet is no more.

Most people do not (want to) think Maintenance and depreciation ARE THE GREATEST COSTS. EAC is a dead horse right now for anyone who bought it because it was affordable.

It was never affordable, just subsidized, and proppesd up by dishonest maintence plan numbers based on a ficticious order book/production run projections.

So, some will want to bail, now... and accept the parts market is the valuation driver here. Same as the "up to snuff" market driver - it will cost a lot and involve a lot of risk, to maybe have a completed functioning ea50 one day. Drives the price DOWN a lot.

So the smart money is gettin out fast. IMO.

The more parts planes are in inventory, the LOWER the value of your plane. For two reasons - 1- the fleet of flying ea50's diminishes as the parts fleet grows... and the parts in and of theselves are less rare.

You decide. The guy that went al cash 14 months ago has $20M cash, compared to the guy deciding today, who will get $7M today.

bill e. goat said...

Hi Flyger,
I was curious about the empty weights discussion, and did a little comparing. Granted, these are still pretty "preliminary". But, except for Epic LT, they will be certified airplanes, a bit heavier than experimental.

Four (er, for) our viewing enjoyment:

Epic LT
(Okay, it's not a fanjet, but it's a turbine:)
In the pictures, it looks like it has a modest horizontal stab, and a rather large vertical stab- guess with 1,200 SHP, you need it !!).

7300 MTOW
4200 empty
6 seats
full fuel, 1200 payload

Piper Jet
(From the pictures, it looks like it has a HUGE horizontal, and modestly small vertical stab)
7250 MTOW
5100 empty
7 seats
full fuel, 800 payload

Cirrus Jet
(What Horizontal Stab, What Vertical Stab :)
6000 MTOW
3800 empty
7 seats
full fuel, 400 payload

Diamond Jet
(The side intakes look butt ugly, but rest of it looks "appropriately sized":)
MTOW 5690 (max ramp wt)
empty 3450
5 seats
full fuel, 500 payload

(Interestingly, the earlier design had an empty weight of 2860, and MTOW of 5110, so both the empty and MTOW increased almost 600 lbs. Also- earlier photos show a "T" tail, where as it is now sort of a cruciform tail- not sure if the horizontal stab came down, or the vertical stab went up).

What's this all mean??
(Think: bunny with a pancake :)

It DOES look -to me- like a FOUR seat jet ought to be doable with an empty weight below 3500.

However, if there are two engines used instead of one, I suppose that would involve a weight penalty (versus SEJ) of maybe 200+ pounds.

For comparison, the trusty Cessna 340:
Cessna 340

Plane and Pilot, C340

(I think EVERYTHING is nicely proportioned on this airplane- best looking GA airplane ever, IMHO. I even think the tip tanks look cool!)

MTOW 5990
empty 3920-4140
fuel cap 100-200 gal
6 seats
full fuel payload (430-1350)
(Lots of fuel capacity and equipment options !! I read it uses the wing of a 414, so I guess that allowed a lot of configuration flexibility).

"Work on the 340 began in 1969 and the first aircraft was delivered in 1971, behind schedule as one of the prototypes crashed during flight testing in 1970."

Somewhere I read that the Cessna flight test method is fly/fix/fly. Given their track record, particularly with the 162, I would suggest they re-evaluate that philosophy. Or buy a lot more parachutes.

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

You didn't try a "drive by" on me, did you?
I'm still waiting.

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Not harsh Flyger, just stubborn.

Again, attacking me does nothing but establish a Vern parallel.

he has already done this, several times, and the weight estimate is based on that real-world, been there done that experience.

Great, show me the plane he has already done, any one of the "several" he has done. Let's see the equipment list, capabilities, and weights. A *REAL PLANE*, not the numbers on a web site. Do you even have a weight budget? Until such time, you are the one being stubborn.

My point about credentials was not to shut you up but to provide some comparison so that casual readers can decide where to place their trust, nothing more.

Data. Data. Data. And then third party vetting. Until such time, it is all smoke.

I think your continued refusal to acknowledge that real-world experience and knowledge of designing and building real-world aircraft is clear enough for anyone who reads.

I'm sorry, you are the one on trial here. You put yourself in this position by proposing the plan. So you are the one refusing to deliver the data.

Show me *ONE* plane that meets the the specs. Go ahead, you say it already exists, so what's the problem? Blast me out of the water with real *VERIFIABLE* data, not more boasts or attack on my character.

bill e. goat said...

I think CWMOR was proposing:
"Purchase of 8-12 airframes for spares ~$6-8M"
That comes out to be $670-750K.
I think they are worth more a bit more than that, right now.

I won't argue that the "market price" might drop, but I think virtually everyone can afford to park their plane for a year or two, if they have to, and gamble -somebody- will pick up the pieces of the factory.

The engines themselves are probably worth $300-400K, so I just don't see anyone for selling one for less than $750-800K, and I think those with the Avio 1.3 (did anybody get 1.5 loaded?) will go for even more.

And I don't see a mass exodus of owners either- these guys have waited FOR YEARS, so what's a few more weeks to see how the auction shakes out.

The Dayjet fleet might be an exception, as I suspect these are relatively orphans, since their status has been in limbo for (?) 4-7 months now. ("Buy the whole fleet- cheaper by the dozen !!" :)

bill e. goat said...

Uh, yeah.
That's just what I was going to say.

Turn-And-Burn said...

ColdWetOne, you are a joke. Your web site states, "Our company was established in 1992, and became an LLC in 2004 - the principals have more than 40 years combined industry experience." You have stated here that you have 18 years experience. Gee, what does that make you, all of about 38 years old? How many other principals do you have in this glorious LLC? There is obviously at least one. If there are two then what, they have ten years experience each, just out of college? Your biggest claim is that it only took you TWELVE years (est 1992 - LLC formation 2004) to become an LLC. You could have done that online in about 10 minutes for about $50. The only reason you hang out at this blog is that you can state whatever you want, and pump yourself up. Nobody else outside of this blog would listen to you.

WhyTech said...

"please post your estimates, with qualifying conditions,"

Four warm bodies - nine months. Biggest qualifying condition: this does not include undoing AvioNfG (ie dis-integrating it)- you said could be another airframe. Recently G1000 has been STC'd into the King Air for example. I would assert that if this took $21mm, it would have never been started. G1000 is existing and certified. No FADEC. The cleaning lady could do it on her lunch hour.

WhyTech said...

"I'm still waiting.

I can only think so fast - especially this time of night!

WhyTech said...

"I'm still waiting.

... zzzzzzzz

bill e. goat said...

ZZZZZZZZZ....ugh- hum? oh- okay :)

That sounds pretty Verntastic to me!!

(I can almost hear echos of "it's only software" :) I eagerly wait to see someone do it for:

4 warm bodies
x100K per year per warm body
x0.75 years
Woo-Hoo !!

(I thought you were going to come in on the other side of my estimate). I think the various "support" organizations have been proposing a $150K buy in, so that's only 2 owners. What's all the hub-bub about-
it's a WAY DONE deal at that price.

In truth, I do hope somebody DOES do it. And, I'll flex a bit and drop the 50% fudge factor, and the FADEC coders, which puts it at a $10M game. That's a quarter of the fleet, at $150K each. Pretty doable, I should think. But I think $300K is off by an order of magnitude. And, I'd say, approaching two? I really think that even for $3M, Duncan, etc, would be ALL OVER IT. Especially now that there is no factory warranty for the owners to fall back on. (And, maybe they are- perhaps in 9 months from now, we'll know).

But putting it another way, both the product liability and the "bug fixes", would cost at least $300K, I should think.

I was basing my numbers, on what I've seen "substantial" organizations do. But organizations that are pretty proficient at it.

(Oh, all right. I'll tear up the "drive-by" ticket :)

bill e. goat said...

Re-reading our posts, to see why two smart guys like us could be so far apart- I realize we were talking goats and bunnies- with pancakes on their heads- in other words (thankfully)- apples and oranges.

I was talking expressly about integrating a new avionics suite into the EA500, and mentioned that afterward, that expertise could be applied to other airframes.

I believe the cost of doing the avionics swap on the EA500- which would involve Avio Ethnic Cleansing / De-integration / (?Disintegration?) / Tranfmorgrification would cost around $15M.

-We both get a ticket for not reeding butter :(

(I wonder how this thing works on wheelbarrow-loads of Franklins- maybe the incinerators are, passe' ?? :)

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

ATM and ASM, you guys get it. I would call Excel more boutique than garage but that is part of why I like them, do a lot with a little. Difference is there is not attempt to make it out to be anything more than it is.

T&B, welcome back. Good guess, I am 39. I am also 6' 2", 190 lbs and an Aquarius, but I am straight and happily married.

FWIW, I have not updated the website to reflect our latest principal consultant, gives us 60 years across 3 primary consultants, 18, 25 and 17 years direct industry experience, including avionics tech experience, military maintenance experience, and a whole lot of service and support and integrated logistics engineering experience - relevant experience in terms of dealing with the issues the fielded aircraft are experiencing. Besides, we all know how the fog and pony show and snazzy websites worked out for the Eclipse customers - I'd figure at least some owners would appreciate a little honesty and straightforward info.

You also may have missed the many times I talk about my preference working with small highly motivated teams. I have access to DER's in Stress, Avionics, and Flgiht Test from my many years in industry.

I did not convert to an LLC until my consulting work reached a level to justify that vs. sole proprietorship, which as you may know is another kind of business organization - but your basic math is good.

Flyger, I will ask Bob if he is interested in providing a spreadsheet for your reference. I think you are wasting a lot of time and energy on the subject and have yet to see anything that helps me understand your overt qualifications for the 'analysis' you mentioned but I do want to try and accomodate it - cannot speak for whether or not he will agree to do so but I will ask.

The Maverick TwinJet was Bob's first design, there are several flying examples. He sold that program to focus on SEJ development after learning what the insurance industry wanted in a single-pilot GA turbine plane. Next design was the original FJ33-4A powered Sport-Jet, and now the PW JT-15D powered Sport-Jet II.

BEG, FADEC development is a huge expense, think tens of millions. The advantage is the FADEC cards are separate from Avio, the issue would be integration and qualification into a another form factor - doable but tough.

bill e. goat said...

Thanks for the info.
I was thinking of only the FADEC coding. But unlike Garmin displays, the new FADECs would be a separate box, so there would be environmental, lightning, HIRF, failure blah blah blah analysis- I can see that being pricey indeed.

Maybe PWC will take this on themselves to stimulate sales. Since they did the test stand development, I would think they are the ones who wrote the control laws for others to code and package in hardware. So maybe they'll "bundle" a FADEC with the engines eventually. They probably already have similar FADECS (?maybe, the Mustang PWC615 one?) available- I suspect only EAC was stupid enough to try to do it themselves.

And by the way, I for one appreciate you NOT updating the website- Baron is right from a "glitz" standpoint, but from a "no-spin" standpoint, I think it's good just as it is.

I don't know if everyone read the flight test evaluation, it's pretty positive:
Test Pilot Report

(I think that if Piper, Cirrus, Diamond, and maybe Epic, are all thinking of sales in the low hundreds, or more, then there should be a market for at least dozens of Excel Jets, and would hope it is pursued, regardless of the Eclipse situation).

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

"you are a joke...The only reason you hang out at this blog is that you can state whatever you want, and pump yourself up. Nobody else outside of this blog would listen to you."

Me too.
Thanks for coming by.

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

"That sounds pretty Verntastic to me!!"

In the style I learned from Baron95, I was being deliberately outrageous to provoke a response. Goat baiting, one might say. Yes, apples and brussels sprouts. My guess is that reality is somewhere in between.

bill e. goat said...

Thanks for the info,
I nearly fainted when I read your original post

That Baron- what a...disruptive influence !!
(Say, where's he been lately ? China also ?)

WhyTech said...


Your "goat link" explains much!

bill e. goat said...

Thanks WT,

I, of course, did take exception to an opening line of that video:

"Most of the animals are sweet, but nothing too unusual.
And then, ...there are, ...the goats."

(But, the rest of it is cute, in a dignified, Angora-goat, sort of way).
These guys are such show offs
(Note the smug grin- these guys are such posers.)

I often have my brain lock up as much as my legs. But there have been many situations, that in retrospect, I wish my mouth would have locked up instead !!

WhyTech said...

"But there have been many situations, that in retrospect, I wish my mouth would have locked up instead !!"

I was trying to be sensitive by not actually suggesting this.

bill e. goat said...

I just have this, to say about that

WhyTech said...

" I just have this to say about that"

It is clear that in addition to having a sense of humor, you have time on your hands! :^)

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

I think you are wasting a lot of time and energy on the subject and have yet to see anything that helps me understand your overt qualifications for the 'analysis' you mentioned

You seem pathologically incapable of posting without innuendo that I am wasting my time, that I'm not qualified to say what I say, and that I have a bogus 'analysis'. Please, attack the argument not the person. I am definitely *not* the person wasting my time on this! Like I said, you are on trial, you prove it.

Since you seem overly impressed by credentials, let's consider the manufacturer who has made more composite airplanes than anyone else, Cirrus. Let's look at their VLJ entry. Their recently released, not yet achieved, weight goals are 3,700 pounds empty (no options) and 6,000 pounds gross. 38% load efficiency. That's right, as a *single* jet, it weighs more than the EA500 does as a *twin*, and that's the theoretical weight compared to an actual one.

Considering *nothing else* other than going to two PW610s instead of one FJ33, a twin version of the SJ50 would gain 150 pounds, *minimum*, based on just engines and accessories. This makes the "SJ610" 800 pounds heavier than the SP 610, and probably more like 900 pounds heavier when it is all said and done (like two pylons, double bleed air systems, etc).

On top of all that, they haven't actually built a conforming production SJ50 yet. I fully expect them to gain on the order of 200 pounds as the design matures. This makes the SJ50 a *one place* airplane full of fuel. This would also mean an "SJ610" would be more than 1,000 pounds heavier than an SP610. Half a ton!

Now tell me where those ~1,000 pounds are in the SJ610 that you don't have in the SP610. Hint: "it's smaller" doesn't cover it by a long shot.

If you argue that Cirrus must be grossly incompetent, then you don't seem to put too much faith in 'credentials' when they disagree with your position.

Now isn't that the biggest mistake of Eclipse? Having so much pride and ego that they didn't listen to sane advice? We know where that road ends up.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Fyger, I do not understand the obsession or the hostility.

Did I not say I would see if the designer would share some data? Is that not good enough?

It is already far more than you would have gotten from Eclipse.

And the SJ-50? Are you kidding me? Even Klapmeier says it will be a pig, but it is their pig.

I have acknowledged your repeated questions and insulting assertions, I have given you the real-world history for this designer and his aircraft.

Why will you not acknowledge the fact that there is real-world experience (design, built and flown) behind the prediction on this design?

Why do you continue to pick airplanes that are not similar in size, construction, mission, or design? These things all have a large impact on the weights.

What exactly is the problem here?

BTDT said...

I've Been There - Done That. I am one of the lurkers who have been reading the blog since shortly after Stan started the original, way back when. I've seen many speculations and ideas posted here over the years. Some were totally accurate. Some were not. I have read all of the public information concerning the buyout plans from the various groups. I don't agree with all the different strategies, but am impressed with effort the various groups are putting into their respective plans. I am also glad to see there are names associated with the plans. Whether or not you agree, the principals have made their names public and are out there to receive the praise and/or criticism from anyone willing to comment. All except one – ColdWetMackarelofReality. I’m finding this to be very curious. Why is someone who put so much energy into a plan like this still using the shield of a bloggers pseudonym? Wouldn’t the plan be taken as more credible if the author’s name and credentials were public as with the other plans?

Just wondering.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

BTDT, I have made myself known to the owners - after all, they are the ones who will decide to take me up on my offer or not.

If they choose to work with me, I'll be pretty well known, if not, well then I can go back to anonymity.

I must really be tweaking something to get all this attention.


bill e. goat said...

Flyger, CWMOR
I think you guys need to "see eye to eye, like these two fellas finally do:
Truce !!

I suspect our pal CW is getting a little more "assistance" than is really needed-
These guys talk my ear off

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Fyger, I do not understand the obsession or the hostility.

There you go again, adding emotion instead of facts. Attack the argument not the person, can you try that just once?

And the SJ-50? Are you kidding me? Even Klapmeier says it will be a pig, but it is their pig.

So let's review. I'm wrong because I may not have built airplanes. Cirrus is wrong because they have built more than anyone else. Seems like you are being very selective in your world view.

Why will you not acknowledge the fact that there is real-world experience (design, built and flown) behind the prediction on this design?

A trifle compared to Cirrus or Diamond.

Okay, second choice, D-Jet. Spec sheet empty weight is 3,450 with a gross of 5,600. 40% load efficiency, right at EA500 and 5% *less* than you claims for SP610. Now take away the FJ33 and add two PW610s, at *least* 150 pounds more. Now the "DJ610" is 3,600 pounds minimum. That's 540 pounds more than the SP610 and probably closer to 700 pounds once everything is accounted for in a twin engine setup. And this is still a spec sheet number, the real airplanes will probably be heavier.

Where are those wasted 700 pounds in the DJ610?

Let me guess, Diamond is grossly incompetent, too.

What exactly is the problem here?

Lack of hard data to establish credibility. Presence of contradicting examples. Dismissal of the evidence. Insinuating critics have ulterior motives.

It's deja vu all over again.

The only way to settle this is to go build and prove me wrong. In the meantime, I know my comments won't convince you. I can only hope it plants some doubt among others so they go into this with some realism. Indeed, that was the entire purpose of the blog.

airtaximan said...


man, great point.

I would think CW is presenting his plan to owners using his name.

I cannot imaginne a problem with revealing who he is here, too... but there might be.

The problem might be an advantage to him.

Who knows, BUT, a great point.

Kinds sorry I didn't think of it...

An anonymous plan is a non-starter.. that's for sure.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Flyger, you are the one who has compared me to Vern and ignored presnted facts, let's not rewrite history here.

You said:
"The only way to settle this is to go build and prove me wrong. In the meantime, I know my comments won't convince you. I can only hope it plants some doubt among others so they go into this with some realism. Indeed, that was the entire purpose of the blog.

That I can totally agree with, especially about the need for realism - but you want to place doubts into others minds based on your unwillingness to acknowledge your question has been answered several times - you just have not liked the answer.

I'll take BEG's suggestion on a truce, and if Bob wants to share more data on weights I'll pass it along.

bill e. goat said...

I appreciate your concern with weight, and you are right- nobody will know exactly what it will weigh until one is built.

But I don't think any of the potential buyers have weight as their top concern. Just like I don't think any of the EA500 operators have max range as their top concern, or cruise speed. "Good enough", really is, good enough, for 90% of the people, 90% of the time.

I'd be curious too, to see, what say the current Excel jet will weigh- maybe someone can update us. But with 1900-2100 pounds of thrust, takeoff isn't going to be a problem- and it would have to grow to 6800 lbs to have the same wing loading as the Mustang (which, only has 600 pounds of payload with full fuel).

So, I'd say, yes, it's going to be heavier than design, somewhat, probably. Virtually everything does. While as tech types, we might debate the percentages, but I don't think it will gain enough to be much of a factor for purchasers.

Cessna Mustang

airtaximan said...


the comment its deja vu all over again is totally unfair...

1- We all knew who vern was, we don't even know who you are - ;)
2- You are cleaning up a mess caused by Vern
3- You will not need to raise $xB or wait 10 years for a result, no way
4- you are not promoting unrealistic support costs, just a way to get support at a decent price
5- you have his clients to look to, and you understand they all have different ideas of the right answer - Vern provided only 1 answer
6- you are not asking for huge upfront non-refundable deposits
7- you are not claiming all the owners already signed up
8- you are looking for a solution to the lack of a large market, instead of promoting a BS large market

Just some observations

bill e. goat said...

I suspect CWMOR has many "irons in the fire" (whereas Wedge simply had many Franklins in the incinerator), and flashing his name on a -somewhat- controversial, dare I say (you KNOW what's coming :) DISTRUPTIVE blog, is not particularly conducive to pursuing those other activities.

The same applies to many of the invitees on Wedge's Christmas Card / blogger suit list last year.

From ALL the evidence, Darth Dimwit, aka, Wedge the Human Torch, wanted to cause as much ruination, to as many people, as possible. He was largely successful. Thanks to Rich, the blog survived, and ultimately thwarted Wedge's patented Financial Death Star / Black Hole Cash Transmorgrifier.

(But, will there be a sequel ?? :)
"Fast Forward" to 2009, Wedge could be back,
Any time, "NOW"

Dave said...

I can only hope it plants some doubt among others so they go into this with some realism. Indeed, that was the entire purpose of the blog.

My doubt has nothing to do with weights. If Eclipse was a high risk start-up any post-Ecliptic businesses will themselves be much riskier. CW and the rest of the team could have the best qualifications in the world, weight could be a total non-issue and the proposed aircraft could be better than it is described, but that doesn't mean that people (who have already lost money) should put money into an experimental aircraft utilizing cannibalized parts being built by a small start-up. I would imagine those that are willing to accept that risk would also accept that there is a margin of error involved between the concept of a jet and how the jet actually ends up upon completion, so it might not meet the exact specifications.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Flyger, here is some real world data for you straight from the designer:

"Just for the record book;

None of the Maverick's weighed 3800 lbs and they had engines that were at least 80 lbs heavier than current modern day engines.

Sport-Jet empty weight measured with calibrated scales was 2501. We have logbooks to validate this. The plane was not bare bones either when it was weighed. It had the full interior installed. We then added 100 lbs of lead near the engine compartment to make up for lack of pressurization equipment. That brought the flying empty weight up to 2601. One can add from here what de-icing would be.

De-ice adds about 50 lbs installed depending on equipment type (TKS, pneumatuc, heat, or electro-mechanicla expulsive).

The difference from one FJ-33-4A to the JT-15D is about +170lb installed, and the estimated difference from between the JT-15D SEJ and SJ-610 designs results from removal of the SEJ inlet and exhaust ducting, addition of carry through and mounts for two engines.

The weight of the PW610's installed is actually comparable to the installed weight of the JT-15D, but Bob is still allowing for some growth to the higher Empty Weight of just over 3,000 lbs.

Bob is happy to go over weights in more detail one on one with any owner who has serious intent and serious questions, and will host a 3rd party of their choosing for an evaluation if so desired.

Dave - well said.

BEG, you really understand the situation well.

Parting shot from Bob:
"I am more than willing to provide some independent third party with our weight breakdown. In fact, have already shared our weight information with aviation experts. I am not willing to post our design details on the web so all those who have never built a plane before can take pot shots at the information.

And we are proud to be called a garage shop. That was how HP got started, MicroSoft, and lots of others - including Orville and Wilbur."

Anonymous said...

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

"I am not willing to post our design details on the web so all those who have never built a plane before can take pot shots at the information."

Right from the Vern playbook, let's start discrediting critics and break out those WCSYC buttons.

I don't think we will ever know because I don't think the SP610 will ever be built. I least, I hope not.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Thanks Flyger, have a nice weekend.

bill e. goat said...


mountainhigh said...

Wow! Someone certainly has an AGENGA! And I don't think it's CWM. CWM answered your weight question and now you are wanting proprietary design data to be posted. Frankly, I don't know of any company that would post such data on a blog site.

I think the offer to share data one-on-one with serious prospective customers is more than fair. I also expect CWM and team would arrange for those interested to talk to test pilots, references, etc.

Sounds like someone might be associated with one of the other OEMs or the Mike/Roel show.

I think most here have a genuine love for aviation. If we can't allow for the fact that there may be a few honest folks in the biz what's left... GA is dead, everyone is scum.... all lies, lies, lies, yada, yada...

I will give at least some owners credit. I think if a few are interested in what CWM offers they are fully capable of contacting CWM and team, reviewing the facts, and making their own decision.

Give it up flyger... your true colors (or might I say agenda) are showing.

CWM, disengaging (as you've done) is all you can do. I don't think your rational approach can overcome this huge agenda. I think everyone can see what's going on here.

flyboymark said...

Apparently a PC-12 jus' drilled into the ground in Butte Montana with 17 aboard(many children, no survivors)
FED EX freighter porpoised on runway in Japan on touchdown, flipped and burst into flames, all aboard killed.

flyboymark said...

FED EX was a MD-11

airtaximan said...

Bob is right, the most respect ne GA company started in a freaking barn...


The risk is visible... not too much BS... have at it owners, it seems like a risky viable option...

LAst time you took a very risky not-viable option mtailor made for uckerseys...

this one is AAA rated risk... have a go

gadfly said...


. . . with video!


WhyTech said...

"a PC-12 jus' drilled into the ground in Butte Montana with 17 aboard"

This sounds wrong. Not this many seats in a PC-12, even in high density config.

gadfly said...


Possible reasons for “17" in Montana:

1. Wrong info from news people (it wouldn’t be the first time).
2. Correct info, but plane overloaded with children “doubled up”.
3. Some people “on ground”, visiting the cemetery, where crash occurred (but they said no fatalities on ground).

“#2" sounds most reasonable to me, as preliminary reports seemed to be from FAA . . . but time will tell.

Video from Tokyo shows MD-11 on its back.


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

“#2" sounds most reasonable to me,"

I've been reading the various reports and this is probably right - and if so, someone (or more) is going to be in deep stuff for allowing this.

Most PC-12's in the U.S. have a VIP seating configuration with 6+2 or 7+2 seats. I am aware of a certified 9+2 utility configuration but this would be unusual in the U.S.

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

Tragic developments.

My prayers go out to the families effected by both accidents.

flyboymark said...

On a lighter note since not much happening till 7 sale;
Get a load of this cute little bird made in Italy and being imported to here in the states. I believe its certified already and uses ROTAX 912's. Would be really nice with a turbo'd 914's though. Good numbers for the horse power and can be had with a glass cockpit for under 300 grand(and check out the video on this page:

flyboymark said...

..and burns 100LL or auto gas @ 8GPH!

flyboymark said...

..per side

gadfly said...

Sorry to bring reality into the discussion, but I found this with "USATODAY", which seems to be in line with earlier speculation:

"In California, Tom Hagler said he saw a group of about a dozen children and four adults Sunday morning at the Oroville Municipal Airport, about 70 miles (112 kilometers) north of Sacramento.

Hagler, owner of Table Mountain Aviation, described the children as ranging from about 6- to 10 year olds. He let the children into his building to use the restroom.

"There were a lot of kids in the group," he said. "A lot of really cute kids."

Hagler said he showed the pilot where he could fill up on fuel, and the pilot said he expected his flight to take two-and-a-half hours. The pilot didn't file a flight plan at the Oroville airport."


ColdWetMackarelofReality said...

This PC-XII tragedy is shaping up to have the early appearance of a monumental case of stupid pilot tricks - tragic reminder of the importance of aeronautical decision making.

Heartbraking story.

baron95 said...

Wow, that was quite a long discussion on weights on a FL250 experimental jet, sporting engines designed to take a larger certified plane to FL410!!!

As an experimental, not needing to show any climb/go-around performance or any 600 ft/min (IIRC) carrier landings under part 23, the MTOW is really dependent on the testicular volume of the owner, not regs.

But it is obvious to anyone, that, all things being equal (designer skill, materials, resources, etc), which they never are, an experimental plane, FL250 and 4 seats, should be able to carry a lot more payload than a certified, FL410, 6-seat plane.

But this is an academic discussion, IMHO.

With several VLJ programs already in motion, both certified and experimental, why would anyone bet on one yet to launch?

It makes little sense to me. But then again, the EA500 owners and depositors have shown, time and time again, a capacity to do just that. Through money after long shot promises.

I am extremely disappointed, that so far, no VLJ (my definition of a MTOW of less than 6,000 lbs) have proven viable and/or sustainable.

We only have a 8,000-lbs class and a 10,000+ class "VLJ" from Cessna and Embraer after 10+ years of hype.

It is a very sad testament to our industry.

Even the established players are struggling at both ends of the airplane range.

Cessna is having a horrible time with the aerodynamics and certification of a modern day C150 and Boeing and Airbus are having a heck of time with the 787/748I and A380/A350 respectively.

And that is with all the computing power, knowledge accumulated in the past few decades?


What happened to the industry that designed the B52, the Connie, the 707, the 747, the C182, the C421, the SR-71, the U2 with little more than pencil and paper?

Very, very sad indeed.

I don't blame Flyger for his "show me" stance. Of late, this entire industry has been full of hot air.

gadfly said...



As usual, the facts seem to change by the minute.

Regardless, this demonstrates the desire of many of us to do everything possible to make flying safe . . . the equipment, the pilots/flight crew, and those who support the industry. It also demostrates the need for everyone in the industry, to count it a personal responsibility, to take action when things are obviously wrong.

But one thing for sure: Some families in Redlands, California, are in a state of grief . . . having intrusted their precious little ones into the care of "professionals".


(And let us not forget the two FedEx pilots, who lost their lives in Tokyo.)

bill e. goat said...

I was afraid this might be a case of an outlier to my "90% of the people, 90% of the time" proposition.

So, I looked up the PC-12 specs.
MAN- that is an IMPRESSIVE airplane.
Even with 17 x 150 lbs (probably much heavier than the average pax, even with lots of luggage, in this sad case), there should have been about (~?) 1000+ nm range.

Oroville Ca (KOVE)
Bozeman, Mt (KBZN)
= 600nm

Looks like some moderate headwind (maybe, 50kts) for the first half of the flight).

(My gut feel is this is an "outlier" to the 90/90 proposition- maybe took off a bit low to ensure no CG or overwt issues?. On the other hand, there probably would not have been a fire if this were the case. Speculation only, offered as a thought experiment, along the lines of "what mistakes might I have made, if I were in that circumstance".

My sympathy goes out to the many families involved.

Pilatus PC-12
(As I'm sure most of us know, Dr. Oliver Masefield, formerly VP engineering and later Senior Fellow at Eclipse, was also formerly VP engineering at Pilatus).

ColdWetMackarelofReality said...


My put is that the origin of the problem is the reliance on computing power over experience, coupled with decisions being made on unachievable schedules, irrational ROI's, and an overreliance on smoke-and-mirrors and hyped up marketing efforts.

There are too few left who follow the Clarence L Johnson approach.

We forget the U2 went from sketch to 70,000 ft in record time, using slide rules and velum - and the same slide rules and velum created the Mach 3+ SR-71 only a couple years later.

It is not a lost art, but it is practiced by far too few.

Showmen and their Barnum-esque antics have largely supplanted the craftsmen - but I have hope.

gadfly said...

Earlier, on FOX News, Geraldo made a snide comment that he wouldn’t allow someone or a group to fly on a ‘single engine airplane’ . . . implying that somehow the “single engine” aircraft was at fault. For the better part of a century, people have flown in the worst of areas, from Alaska, to West Irian (“Borneo”), or on the Yucatan, etc., safely in single engine aircraft, when multi-engine aircraft are out of the question. So, we have a “perceived” attitude that somehow the equipment is the prime suspect . . . without the slightest understanding that companies such as Pilatus and “P&W”, are rarely the ones at fault.

That’s a difficult enemy to fight . . . similar to those who wish to register firearms.

But that’s the playing field in which many of us have chosen for our life’s work.


(What do you wish to guess that “Geraldo” drives a car with a single set of controls, and a single engine. Stupid statement? . . . Sure . . . but there’s a pony in there, somewhere! . . . or is it a “Jack Ass”?)

(And Cold Fish, it still takes a "genius", like Kelly Johnson, to sketch it out . . . colleges have never yet given birth to a genius. And no computer ever built has ever had an original thought, any more than a pencil or a "slip stick".)

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

Gadfly said ...For the better part of a century, people have flown in the worst of areas, from Alaska, to West Irian (“Borneo”), or on the Yucatan, etc., safely in single engine aircraft

Gad, please!!! You are being worse than Geraldo. He doesn't know better. You do. The flying activities you mention had amongst the worst safety record in aviation history.

Please, man!!!

gadfly said...


'Most things in life are "relative" . . . and travel by single engine aircraft in the Yukon, or in the jungle, rates a good safety rating, compared to the alternatives. The man that taught me to fly spent most of his life flying in the jungles of South America. And, yes, he did fly a DC3, ferrying missionaries across the "Gulf" and a "clipped wing" PBY Catalina (in and out of narrow rivers), but most of the time was single-engine . . . Beavers, Norsman, and Cessna's . . . with a dedication to precision flying and excellent maintenance.


x said...

((Posting from deep desert location via PV, Aircard and chewing gum))

My Google alert just pinged on http://www.favonius.nl/page/190

This used to be Roel Pieper's bio at "Favonius". This was Pieper VC Fund.

He has removed from the team list and his bio has been whiteholed. It looks like Pieper has been booted from the namesake of his giant sailboat.

He may have to hitch a ride with Esker.

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

Until now the nav database upload was proprietary and available only from EAC. Mike McConnell has been a great supporter. Mike your apparently not needed anymore as these guys have your back.

julius said...


This used to be Roel Pieper's bio at "Favonius". This was Pieper VC Fund.

perhaps it's interesting that Favonius's news do not contain any hint that RiP left it as a team member...

I think RiP's glamour as a frontman of Favonius has gone and he is actually engaged in his private businesses (ETIRC, Road Group Holding AG (?)).

Let's wait if RiP will use the "Favonius" for race sailing!


WhyTech said...

"I looked up the PC-12 specs.
MAN- that is an IMPRESSIVE airplane."

Yes, it is. I owned a PC-12 for several years. This acft has excellent flying qualities and is quite docile flown within limits. The safety record is superb overall, with just a handful of fatal accidents over 15 years and about 1000 acft, with all fatal accidents attributed to pilot error. (NTSB website shows three fatal in US since 1994, excluding one accident in which a line tech walked into a propeller - all pilot error).)The acft carries up to 2700 lbs of fuel, so there is considerable loading flexibility in terms of pax vs fuel. However 14 on board raises significant W&B and other safety issues, especially in a 6+2 seating configuration.

NoFPJ4me said...

"Earlier, on FOX News, Geraldo made a snide comment that he wouldn’t allow someone or a group to fly on a ‘single engine airplane’ . . .

Interesting since he apparently has no problem using his single engine helicopter AS-350-B2 Eurocopter~

Beedriver said...

virtually all new revolutionary products are built by small teams staffed by people with the right stuff and they are usually thought of as somewhat maverick. The SR71 was built by such a team. Intel uses those kind of teams for its new microprocessor development especially in the early concept and prototype stage, my company was successful in new product development, because I made sure the basic development was done by small focused groups with the right stuff.

Large companies that try to do new product development with large development groups almost always fail. new product development is a different game from building a variation on an existing product where large development teams can work well.

in this vein "Cold Wet's" group has a chance of succeeding if they have the resources and a few people with the right stuff.

however small start ups have real problems because the personality characteristics makes them successful at generating a few of something usually means that they do not have the right attitude to fully perfect a product. additionally in the aviation industry now, it takes huge amounts of money to get to a finished product and volume production. It amazing how many times very good prototypes have never made it into production because they cannot generate the needed resources.

Eclipse was the classic case of throwing a lot of money at a new development without a few practical people with the right stuff in charge to actually do the development.

If anyone wants to see a white paper on my view on product development go to www.newtechdev.com and look at the white paper "small lot development process"

Black Tulip said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gadfly said...

Dark Blossom

Your thinking makes good sense. There was a comment that the pilot did not add fuel in Oroville, which would have kept the CG farther forward. Eyewitness accounts would seem to confirm your thoughts.


(All speculation . . . but a good place to start.)

Black Tulip said...

Theories are cheap and frequently wrong but here goes. A Pilatus PC-12 with fourteen aboard will probably be over gross even if half the people are small ones. Even more important the CG will be far aft especially with daypacks, baggage and ski equipment aboard. With extreme aft CG the aircraft acts less like a weathervane (stable) and more like a flag (unstable). (Whytech, which way does the CG move as fuel is burned off?)

The pilot notices that neither he nor the autopilot can fly the airplane very well. He decides to make a ‘precautionary’ landing short of destination. Perhaps the aircraft doesn’t return to level flight with pitch inputs. (This is how the Piper Cheyenne II got the stability augmentation system.) Worse yet pitch inputs cause the flight path to diverge. Unbelted passengers may be moving around in the cabin causing the CG to shift. Stall speed is higher….

WhyTech said...

"A Pilatus PC-12 with fourteen aboard will be over gross even if half the people are small ones. "

Not necessarily. I ran a W&B assuming 7 @ 170 and 7 @ 85 lbs. This can be made to work within the W&B envelope and without being at the aft end of the envelope. It does require a light fuel load, however. Of course, it is possible to get the acft to the aft end of the envelope and beyond depending on how it is loaded. My biggest W&B issue with the PC12 was staying inside the fwd edge of the envelope - had to carry extra stuff in th aft baggage area to do this (with full fuel and 2-3 in the cabin, 1-2 up front). No really good place for skis in the PC-12 except the aisle of the main cabin or the aft cabin assuming rear seats removed - this could be legal as there were cargo tie downs in this area. Fuel burn results in minimal CG shift - I doubt that this would have been an issue for this flight. So, to me it looks possible to do this, but why would you?

Black Tulip said...

"It looks possible to do this, but why would you?"


bill e. goat said...

Whenever I see a diversion just short of the final destination, and the weather is good, I think fuel.

Beedriver said...

my guess on the PC 12.

Again this is just a guess knowing nothing to try to learn from an accident.
I think it is either a W&B problem with an inexperienced pilot or perhaps pilot incapacitation with and novice co pilot taking over.

A lot of the PC 12's I know of have been purchased by low time single engine pilots owner flown with more money than training experience. that does not necessarily mean there is a problem with a low time pilot. However, the most risky pilot category according to insurance agents I have talked to is owner flown high performance aircraft especially with low time in a high performance aircraft.

If you want to look at another interesting PC 12 accident look at the one that happened at Hayden CO. Jan 11 http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20090111X45527&key=1

He took off in light snow, made a U turn and went in upside down 2 miles away.

Perhaps control locks left on or frozen controls from accumulated ice? any thoughts from the experienced PC 12 pilot?

WhyTech said...

"Perhaps control locks left on or frozen controls from accumulated ice? any thoughts from the experienced PC 12 pilot?"

It is difficult to insure a PC-12 without significant pilot experience and simulator based recurrent training. The two most recently posted PC12 fatal accidents (Hayden & Santa Fe) look very much like spatial disorientation accidents and, if so, could have occurred in any acft. The Santa Fe pilot was not excactly inexperieced, with something like 2500TT and 1400 hrs in turbine acft. It is very difficult to fly a PC12 with the control lock in place as it is a pin throughthe pilots control column with a large red placard attached saying "remove before flight" and is a checklist item. Not impossible, just difficult. The Hayden pilot would not have gotten as far as he did with the lock in place. The excellent safety record for these acft to date does not suggest that they are beyond the skills of a diligent, well trained pilot with 1000 or more TT (an unofficial breakpoint for insurers). Its a docile airplane with few if any bad habits, however it is a "systems" acft. A 400 hour wonder is asking for trouble, however. The military sends 200 hour pilots out IFR in much more demanding acft.

WhyTech said...

"Whenever I see a diversion just short of the final destination, and the weather is good, I think fuel."

Good thinking - to get this many pax on board and stay within weight limits would have required minimal fuel - around 90 minutes worth by my estimates. Very little margin for any trip.

Beedriver said...

I agree that it is difficult to figure out why these accidents happened especially in the Hayden incident. It is an easy departure, straight out climb in a wide valley. either fly the ILS back course out and climb like mad and or fly to the VOR and climb in the hold.

the difficult thing to find out is the pilots's experience. In several aerostar accidents I am familiar with and at least one 421 accident I know of, the pilot had enough money to purchase it and had a twin engine rating and just never insured it thus he never needed to do any training. I am not too worried if he killed himself but usually those guys take some innocent people with them.

The pilatus pilot in Hayden also had an autopilot, I assume, that would easily fly the airplane in the climb. ???

WhyTech said...
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WhyTech said...

"The pilatus pilot in Hayden also had an autopilot, I assume, that would easily fly the airplane in the climb. ???"

Yes, assuming it was not inop, it would do an excellent job. SimCom, the official provider of PC-12 simulator training, emphasizes using the autopilot extensively, especialy single pilot.

WhyTech said...

"Very little margin for any trip."

My SOPs required 1000 lbs minimum for TO, 700 lbs minimum on the ground at the planned alternate. The 1000 lbs equates to about 2 hrs assuming 600 lbs for the first hour and 400 lbs per hour thereafter. But, aplying the alternate minimum fuel requirement, 1000 lb at TO would allow at most 30 min of flying time. I cant recall ever departing with the 1000 lb minimum. Conservative? Perhaps, but one less thing to bite.

gadfly said...

Here is possibly the best written report (so far) on the PC-12 incident:



(In a world when all problems are solved at about seven minutes before the top of the hour, we may have a long wait for our questions to be answered. But this report brings us a little closer to the real-life human elements of this terrible incident. In the mean time, it is a reminder of our need to be diligent in making GA ever more safe.)

baron95 said...

And on other news... it looks like the Dow is up almost 1,000 points and the broader market up almost 15% since the market bottom was called on this very blog.

Had you sold your EA500 for $500K then and invested it in, you'd have $575K or so by now.

But then again, the financial world may end tomorrow, right?

fred said...

baron :

as a lonely bird doesn't make a sunny spring ...
the market react like a good old junkie to the announce of an other money-fix ...!

it will be exactly like the other attempts :

pump-it up (with tons of freshly printed cash) or let it crash ...

the result is extremely simple to foresee , in a country where GNP is made 76% on consumers spending , what can replace those consumers when they are broke ?

if it would be only that simple , it would be already quite good ...

they are not only broke , but as well drowning in past credits ...

so , they are not at 0 , more at minus N²

welcome into the real world , where market-economy is primarily about Creation of richness , not about speculation and piles of debts ...!

gadfly said...

Here we have represented, three . . . maybe four . . . no, make that at least five major considerations in aircraft safety . . . all wrapped up in our discussion.

Strangely, the first seems to center around finances . . . “How to make a profit, etc.”.

‘With the second being “ego”, “pride”, . . . personal control, and the overall desire to always being “right”, etc.

Third (I would have hoped this would be first) is “hardware design/mechanical integrity/excellence/quality/reliability . . . that sort of thing . . . including aerodynamic excellence, and “beauty”.

Fourth . . . flight training.

Fifth . . . “weather”, the movement, temperature, and humidity of air.

Sixth . . . the infrastructure . . . support and maintenance of all that relates to aircraft.

Seventh . . . public perception

and the list could go on and on.

There’s probably no right or wrong answer, here . . . just some observations that may stimulate further thought. Companies like “Pilatus” seem to have placed the “third” and “fourth” items at the top of the list. Eclipse seems to have put the “ego”, etc., at the top of the list, with the finances an extremely close “second”. But then, that’s just my perception.


(Your opinions will differ . . . but maybe the exercise will initiate some good decisions.)

WhyTech said...
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WhyTech said...

FAA TCDS for the PC-12 shows certified for a maximum of 9 pax seats and 2 crew seats. The accident acft is said to have been configured with 6+2 seats, which is the most common arrangement for U.S. acft.

§ 91.107 Use of safety belts, shoulder harnesses, and child restraint systems - (3) Except as provided in this paragraph, each person on board a U.S.-registered civil aircraft (except a free balloon that incorporates a basket or gondola or an airship type certificated before November 2, 1987) must occupy an approved seat or berth with a safety belt and, if installed, shoulder harness, properly secured about him or her during movement on the surface, takeoff, and landing.

FAR 91.205 (13) An approved safety belt with an approved metal-to-metal latching device for each occupant 2 years of age or older. According to reports, all children on the acft at least 2 years of age.

The attorneys are goung to have a filed day with this one if there is anyone left to sue.

baron95 said...

WhyTech said... The attorneys are goung to have a filed day with this one if there is anyone left to sue.

Why do you say that? True, attorneys always schedule a field day following an aviation accident, but why to you think this field day will be particularly grand?

Other than the tragic loss of so many lives from one family, this appears to be a garden variety improper decision making, operation of a/c in an unapproved manner, failure to maintain proper speed, stall crash.

Given that the insurance company will likely put all attorneys on notice that they will deny any claims except for a nominal payment, I expect this to settle very quietly.

But then again, any two lawyers can choose to have a field day anyday.

baron95 said...

Yes Fred, the US economy is collapsing, yet, since you posted your reply, the market has gone up another 2% - go figure.

WhyTech said...

"Why do you say that?"

So many violations, such flagrant violations, and so many lives lost. IMO, not exactly a "routine" lapse of ADM.

baron95 said...

I know WT - but all pointing to a single individual, the guy the prob bought the policy - that usually does not lend itself to lengthy litigation.

The insurgency company will just come in and say - airplane was operated in violation of TC, policy was not in effect, we will deny any claims, but are willing to make a good faith payment of $100K or whatever to the estate of each child and $200K to the estate of each adult, or whatever they calculate.

Usually that settles it. Better than trying to sue collect from the estate of a guy that may not be "that" wealthy/liquid anymore, and has most things in the names of wife, children, etc.

Just my 2c, but I think this is at most an attorney picnic or backyard cookout, not a full fledged field day.

fred said...

baron :

2% ?

fine , it is only an other N% to go back to exactly the same point it was a few months ago ...

you see : a few things are constant (like piles of debts) while up and downs are only relatives ...( you loose 75% today , tomorrow you'll make a up of 20% , you are still much lower than before ...as well as if X is equal to 1 , then tomorrow it is 2 = 100% hike , but in real world it is only from 1 to 2 !!)

you know i envy you sometimes ...

i would like to have this capacity to believe in only anything good ...

you see the more i see it , the more US economy is looking like EAC ...

hope that timothy has knowledge of verbiage like "Value proposition" or "Disruptive Breakthrough" or "Verntastic" ...

you see the problem : with a few hundreds billions more , even Vern could have made it ...

but i doubt very much that parking a Fpj close to a mountain of franklin's would have changed the bird's shortcomings in anyway , by itself ...

you see (i hope to be wrong !) to me it looks like a plaster on a wooden leg ...

2% since i write ... no problems = your tax to allow those 2% have been raised of 9% ...

and if $ is to be picked-up , in a while , from the ground for anything else than starting a fire with = those tax-hikes are only beginning ...

look what did happen in the time of the "New-deal" !!!

baron95 said...

Yep, I agree Fred. Awesome analogy.

The US Economy is just like Eclipse, two great engines, an OK vessel with a couple of cracks, and a buggy control panel.

And right now it is looking like Brandais - engines are being fed full fuel on TOGA.

If the pilots just leave them alone, the bird will climb for a quite a while.

As for how they'll land the plane, that is a problem best discussed at FL250 not 250ft AGL.

Now back to original programing - discussing the one-a-day plans emerging to keeping the US Economy, err, EA500 flying.

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