Embry-Riddle hosts Drone Challenge at AirVenture

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 attendees can get hands-on experience at the controls of unmanned flying machines as part of the Small Unmanned Aerospace System (sUAS) Challenge during this week’s fly-in.

The sUAS Challenge, which will include both obstacle and speed courses for the unmanned flying vehicles commonly referred to as drones, are part of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s aviation mobile interactive exhibit, the Embry-Riddle Experience. [Read more…]

Bristell debuts fractional program for LSA

Bristell TDO

Bristell Aircraft introduced at this week’s AirVenture a new share program for its Light-Sport Aircraft (LSA).

Bristell TDO

Bristell TDO

“This program offers shared ownership, share financing, aircraft management and operator training all from one organization,” said Lou Mancuso, company president, who noted that Bristell owns the aircraft and underwrites the shares.

Aircraft shares are available in quarter, eighth and sixteenth increments. Each share package comes with a defined number of hours per year. A sixteenth share entitles a shareholder to 30 hours at the discounted hourly wet rate of $55 an hour. An eighth shareholder is entitled to 60 hours at the discounted $55 an hour rate.

Share value begins at $14,000 for a sixteenth share, which can be financed at $140 a month. An eighth share is $26,000, which can be financed for $260 a month. A quarter share is $50,000, while a half share is $95,000. Financing is not available on those shares.

For the shares that can be financed, the first six months is on a trial basis and the buyer can opt out at any time. After the six month trial, the monthly payment goes towards a fully amortized 14 year loan at 8.2% APR. Monthly payments remain the same. The buyer may pay down their loan balance without penalty at any stage during the loan term. The hourly operating rate for a fully paid share is $67 an hour, according to company officials.

Bristell TDO

Bristell TDO

The second component of this program is the training provided by Bristell. Its PLC (Personal Limitations Checklist), GPA (Ground Proximity Awareness) and DFGAP (Defined Go-Around Point) training under the “Landing Doctor” syllabus is designed for pilots transitioning to LSAs.

“I’ve been involved in LSA since the very beginning and our Landing Doctor syllabus is a result of all the lessons we’ve learned about LSA in those 10 years. Ten years of data shows that LSA incidents are concentrated around loss of control in the landing or takeoff phases,” Mancuso continued. “This program is designed to make pilots ‘masters and commanders’ of these lightly wing loaded aircraft, particularly while performing crosswind takeoffs and landings. LSAs are fun, but you’ve got to know how to fly them.”

Hangar and insurance are billed annually in advance. At an airport with a $325 a month hangar fee, the yearly dues on a sixteenth share are $500. All in, including hangarage, insurance and financing, the hourly rate works out at $123 an hour. If the shares are purchased outright, the cost falls to $67 an hour.

“This program puts new aircraft, the latest and greatest avionics and advanced auto-pilots in the hands of ordinary pilots,” Mancuso said. “We expect huge interest in the program.”

Bristell Shares are available in Islip, N.Y., Lancaster, Pa., and The Villages, Florida. Bristell will supply an aircraft to a new airport once the sale of more than 50% of the aircraft is assured. Bristell has the capacity to place six aircraft per year in the Bristell Shares program.


Airplanista’s #Oshbash 2015 event Tuesday

Oshbash 2013 (photo by Neil Reagan)

Each year at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, the Airplanista Aviation Blog hosts a social media “meetup” event called #Oshbash. It’s a chance for those on aviation social media — primarily Twitter — to meet each other and enjoy the kind of fun and camaraderie that erupts when the room is full of aviators that love technology and social media as much as they do flying.

This year’s Oshbash is slated for Tuesday, July 21, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the EAA Press Tent on the AirVenture grounds. [Read more…]

Cardiac event leads to crash

The RV-6A was one of a group of five airplanes traveling to a fly-in. The group planned to land at an interim stop before continuing to the fly-in the following day.

The RV was the fourth to land at the airport in Knox, Ind. During the approach, it hit the ground about where a base-to-final approach turn would have been expected. [Read more…]