News You Can Use
Sport Pilot/Light-Sport Aircraft NPRM Comment Deadline Draws Near
The Department of Transportation has received over 715 public comments to the Sport Pilot/Light Sport Aircraft notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). EAA, in partnership with the FAA, has received and processed over 500 of these comments, all of which have been faxed to the DOT Docket office to ensure they are on the official record.
EAA will release an early draft of its comments the week of April 22. We urge members to review these comments as a part of their research before filing individual comments. The submission deadline is May 6, and there are no limits on the number of comments an individual can submit. Comments can be submitted through EAA's NPRM web page located at
Here’s how you can view the submitted public comments:
- Go to the DOT Docket web site:
- Enter: 11133 in the docket search block, then click search.
Meigs-Saving Senate Bill Passed By
The National Aviation Capacity Expansion Act (S. 2039) passed out of the Senate
Commerce Committee on Thursday morning, April 18, with the Meigs-preserving provision intact. The bill, along with companion legislation in the House (HR 3479), would cement the historic City of Chicago-State of Illinois agreement that adds 25 years to the life of Meigs Field, plus added capacity at O'Hare and an airport in suburban Peotone. Earlier in the week, the General Aviation Coalition, chaired by EAA President Tom Poberezny, sent letters to United States Senators urging them to co-sponsor the bill, which was introduced by Illinois Senator Richard Durbin. The bill will hopefully be introduced on the Senate floor.
EAA President part of Key GA Forecast Panel
EAA President Tom Poberezny, who currently serves as chairman of the General Aviation Coalition, was in Wichita, Kan., on April 16 to participate in a panel discussion featuring the leaders of the nation’s GA organizations. The panel, which discussed “Major Issues Impacting General Aviation,” was part of FAA’s annual General Aviation Forecast Conference.
The panel brought together the top leaders in general aviation, including Phil Boyer of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Roy Resavage of Helicopter Association International, Jim Coyne of the National Air Transportation Association and Jack Olcott of the National Business Aviation Association. Ed Bolen, president of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, moderated the discussion.
EAA, Phillips 66 Helping General Aviation Rebound Through Young Eagles Program
Although the past eight months have been difficult for all of aviation and general aviation in particular, a bright spot helping the GA community return to normalcy is the quick start in 2002 for EAA’s Young Eagles Program.
The Young Eagles Program, designed to introduce young people ages 8-17 to the world of flight through a free demonstration airplane flight, posted the strongest first three calendar months of the year in the program’s history this year. That total of more than 10,000 Young Eagles flown, during the worst weather months of the year in most parts of the country, bodes well for the entire program, which has flown more than 780,000 young people since July 1992.
The World's Most Complete Collection of Aviation Knowledge and Expertise: The Eclipse Aviation
EAA AirVenture's Eclipse Aviation Forums Plaza draws the very best from the aviation world. There are literally hundreds of innovators, authorities, authors, and experts who share and exchange information on virtually every aspect of flight. It is the most comprehensive collection of aviation knowledge available anywhere.
You can learn more about homebuilding, maintaining, repairing and restoring aircraft; see presentations on various airplane types; explore cutting-edge technology; or get instruction on how to fly safer, better and more proficiently and much more.
EAA Monitoring Crash Situation in Italy
News reports on Thursday stated that a general aviation aircraft has crashed into the 25th floor of the Pirelli building in Milan, Italy. The pilot, reportedly the airplane's sole occupant, radioed a distress call to Italian air traffic authorities prior to the crash, according to news reports. The Italian interior ministry indicated that the accident did not appear to be an intentional attack. EAA is following the situation closely and will monitor government and media reaction to the crash and will work to ensure that reporting of the events are balanced and fair. The FAA has informed EAA that there is no anticipated change in the security alert level in the United States, nor are there changes imminent in the air traffic or airspace processes as a result of this
Renowned Pilot Dick Rutan Special Guest/Speaker
AT EAA Family Flight And Balloon Fest
Dick Rutan, whose distinguished aviation career includes around-the-world ballooning attempts, will be a special guest at the inaugural EAA Family Flight and Balloon Fest, to be held on the EAA grounds June 1-2. Rutan is best known for his around-the-world, nonstop, non-refueled flight in the Voyager in 1986. He has also flown around the world in a single-place homebuilt aircraft and made attempts at around-the-world balloon flight. Currently he is test pilot for XCOR EZ-Rocket, a rocket-powered homebuilt aircraft that was named one of TIME Magazine's 2001 "Inventions of the Year." Rutan also serves as official spokesperson for Youth Education Programs within the EAA Aviation Foundation's Science-Math-Technology initiative
On The Flight Line ---
Bobby Bishop Forced To Bail Out of BD-5J
Bobby Bishop, aerobatic pilot and frequent air show performer at EAA AirVenture, safely bailed out of his BD-5J microjet Wednesday before the airplane crashed in rural Clarke County, Alabama. Bishop, EAA 589876, was flying the aircraft, one of his Freedom Jets, during part of extensive military war game operations near the Gulf Coast. He was simulating the role of a cruise missile. According to authorities, the pilot noticed engine trouble and flames and decided to bail out. The BD-5J is a single-place aircraft
measuring 12-feet long, 450 pounds, and capable of speeds up to 300 miles per hour.
Earl Luce Reports First Flights of Wittman Buttercup
Earl Luce, Brockport, New York, made the first two flights of
his Wittman Buttercup this week, on Sunday, April 14, and another flight
Thursday after some rear strut adjustments to fix the heavy left wing.
He's been building this airplane from scratch for about three years,
extrapolating the plans from the Wittman Tailwind and W-10 and EAA's
original Buttercup located at AirVenture Museum. It was readily apparent
to Luce during the first flight that the left wing was heavy, leading to
the short, 12-minute ride. "I had to learn how to fly it, landed and
made the adjustments to the rear struts, which fixed 99 percent of the
he said. Luce says he's getting more calls for plans, but says he needs to
get all the numbers down first, including leading edge stalls, flutter
testing, cruise, best glide angles, etc. "Everyone's begging for
numbers," he said. "I have nobody to compare this airplane to,
so I need to keep pushing forward." The original Buttercup--Steve
Wittman’s 1937 “utility hauler”--claimed a 40 mph stall and 150 mph
cruise. Luce says he wants to make 50 plan sets and make them available in
about a month or so. He also wants to fly Buttercup to Oshkosh and set it
next to the original to see how it compares, possibly in May.
UND Names Clay Lacy Scholarship Winners
Three aviation students at the University of North Dakota were recently named recipients of $12,500 Clay Lacy Professional Pilot Scholarships. They are Joe Cozza, Tyler Kolden, and Greg Peterson.. $10,000 of each scholarship applies toward flight training expenses at UND, and $2,500 is allocated to defray expenses for flight time, room and board, and supervision associated with the co-op program held at the EAA Aviation Center, Oshkosh. Through an agreement with the EAA Aviation Foundation, Lacy provides a unique opportunity for students to prepare for an aviation career. Lacy, who retired from United Airlines as seniority number 1, has one goal for this program: to help others become professional pilots. The scholarships recognize flight abilities, academic achievements, past accomplishments, present endeavors and EAA spirit of volunteerism.
Staggerwing Museum Seeks Documentation of Twin Beech 18
The Staggerwing Museum Foundation, Tullahoma, Tennessee, wants to be the source for everything having to do with the twin-engine Beechcraft Model 18. So it’s asking the aviation world for donations of STCs, blueprints, manuals, and other related documentation in hopes of preserving as much material as possible. Their goal is to keep the airplanes safely flying far into the future by allowing access to the information by those restoring or repairing Twin Beech 18s. If you have some information you would like to donate, contact the Twin Beech 18 Society division of the Staggerwing Museum Foundation at 931-455-1974, or write to PO Box 550, Tullahoma, TN, 37388.
COPPERSTATE Fly-in To Celebrate 30th Anniversary at New Home
The COPPERSTATE Regional EAA Fly-in will celebrate its 30th anniversary at its new permanent home, the Phoenix Regional Airport (A39), located 25 miles south of Phoenix, Arizona. The largest EAA fly-in in the Southwest, COPPERSTATE will be held on October 10-13. Previous years saw more than 650 fly-in aircraft and over 120 exhibitors in attendance. Featured attractions at the fly-in include educational forums, builders’ workshops, aircraft judging, a Fly Market and Young Eagle Flights. To learn more, visit the website,
Nominations Sought For Wright Brothers, Elder
The National Aeronautic Association is seeking nominees for the annual Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy, awarded “to a living individual for significant public service of enduring value, as a civilian, to aviation in the U.S.” and the Elder Statesman of Aviation Award, which “honors outstanding Americans who by their efforts over a period of at least 15 years have made contributions of significant value to aeronautics and have reflected credit upon America and themselves.” To learn more about how to nominate someone for one of these esteemed awards, call 703-527-0266, or visit
Q & A:
Question of the Week
Question For EAA
Aviation Information Services:
I'm writing with some questions about FARs pertaining to airworthiness inspections of
FAR 91.409 (Inspections) says:
(c) Paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section do not apply to --
(1) An aircraft that carries a special flight permit, a current experimental certificate, or a provisional airworthiness certificate;
Paragraph (a) is the annual inspection requirement. Does FAR 91.409 (c) (1) exempt experimental category, amateur-built aircraft from the annual inspection requirement? If not, what is it talking about?
Another question: If the annual inspection is required, may it be performed and signed off by an A&P, or does it have to be an AI?
Answer: The requirement for an annual inspection, as called out in FAR 91.409(a)(1), is in fact nullified by the provisions of 91.409(c)(1) if the aircraft has a provisional or experimental airworthiness certificate, or a special flight permit. This is due to the fact that, by definition, the annual inspection verifies that the aircraft in question meets it's type design. Aircraft that have provisional or experimental airworthiness certificates do not have a type design or type certificate to be compared against. Thus, they cannot be inspected in accordance with an annual inspection.
These aircraft which are covered by 91.409(c)(1) are instead governed by a set of operating limitations. These operating limitations are issued along with, and are part of, the airworthiness certificate for that specific aircraft. In these operating limitations (OpLims) there will be the requirement for a "condition inspection". This condition inspection will commonly be required annually. The OpLims will also spell out who is authorized to do this inspection, and in general it will require an A&P mechanic. However, this A&P mechanic does NOT need an inspection authorization (IA).
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