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Guest Scott Campbell

Eclipse 500

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Today I went to Oshkosh (live just north of Madison, WI) for my 5th year. As always, a great time with so much to see, especially in the antique warbird area. However, I also waited about 10 minutes to sit in the Eclipse 500, the soon-to-be certified $850,000 state of the art econojet (a term I use, perhaps not accurate). I spoke for awhile with a representative who informed me that the likes of Bill Gates and other Billionaires are behind this expensive endeavor. She told me that besides the operating cost of only .59 cents per mile, the aircraft would be used as a national "air taxi" to get ordinary people from regional airports like Whitman (obviously in between airshows) amd other smaller airports that may or may not have ILS capability. She also informed me that the aircraft could even land on 3000 feet of grass runway if needed. In other words, compared to Lear or Beechcraft, this would be extremely affordable and versatile. Order yours today (I'm dreaming of course) and by 2006 it should be ready for delivery!Anyway, a great time despite the humidity. I know I take it for granted since I live only 75 miles from Oshkosh, but this is always a highlight of the year for me. I find a comfortable area on the flightline and watch everything from vintage to f18's at 500 feet. Great time.Comments or reactions always interestingSpruce

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Sounds exciting, I've sort of been keeping track of the Eclipse and it promises to be quite a plane. It will be really nice to sit in it when I head up on sunday/monday.Scott

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Your'e lucky to live so close to Oshkosh.I made my first trip that I myself drove to Oshkosh I drove 222.3 miles(statute) from my house to where I parked for the first time, because I just turned 16 in April. It was well worth the trip, and it was my 5th actual trip to Oshkosh.I am also proud to say I didn't give into the high prices for consessions at AirVenture, and I went to eat at the infamous Fields, IceCream & Cheese!Best food in Oshkosh, and the best prices!!!!--------------Paul MeyerCitabria @ Morris C09www.KryptonAir.comwww.LAARTCC.orgGoose Lake, IL

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Wow - sounds really great to visit Oshkosh during the EAA..I am from Madison and grew up in Waunakee. Been in Seattle since 1990. I would really like to plan a trip to see Mom, that just happens to conicide with Oshkosh - maybe next year.Where are you from ( north of Madison )?- Myles

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SpruceI have a friend who has a deposit down on the Eclipse 500.The problem is certification, estimates of two years away often go into four or five.Another is the Century which originally started as a single engine jet and then changed to a twin.The Century is like a Baby CJ but still $2.5 mill.When did they tell you that they estimated the aircraft will be readely available for purchase?Peter

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They had a segment on CNN business the other day about it. The engines are modified from the cruise missles engines. They only weigh 59 pounds each! Looks neat, but the "national air taxi" sounds like a pipedream to me. They stated they have SEVERAL potential orders for over 1000 each. Reason I say that is, wait till one crashes. Those 1000's of orders will drop to 100's. Sounds good, but I am sceptacle about it. Don

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> Those >1000's of orders will drop to 100's. Sounds good, but I am >sceptacle about it. I believe that's already happened, but I don't have the time to look the subject up this morning.L.Adamson

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I could count the dead people in Learjets, but I won't. Needless to say sales haven't dropped.If I have the choice between an Eclipse 500 for $800k and an Arrow III TC for $1.5 mill, guess which I'll choose?I can count the number of dead people from Arrows, too, but I won't.

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I am from Madison and grew up in Waunakee. Been in Seattle since 1990. I would really like to plan a trip to see Mom, that just happens to conicide with Oshkosh - maybe next year.Where are you from ( north of Madison )?Jabberthecat,I'm also from Waunakee. Graduated in 83, own a christmas tree farm and teach at DeForest HS. I went to Oshkosh with a fellow teacher who also is a mechanic in the guards the last 24 years, so he knows a lot about aircraft. I swear, the guy can identify almost anything that flys (if it is commercial).As far as the saftey issue goes for the Eclipse 500, I was also curious since it is such a new design and a very light aircraft for such speed. It certainly isn't being rushed into production. I was asking the rep about how ACT operators felt about this kind of revolution (if it happens). Seems like there would be a lot more routing with say 1000 jet taxies in the air at one given time going to perhaps 500 different smaller regional airports. I would guess with the problems that exist today with volume, this may not be real popular with them.Spruce

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True! But if a NEW plane with a zero track record has an early crash, it could end the company IF it's plane induced. They are using "new technology" to assemble these things too. That is always a little scarey too. Turbo Arrows are 1.5 million dollars?!?!?! I use to pick them up at Vero Beach, BRAND NEW for $50,000 dollars!!!Full IFR and a/p! Man...back then Warriors were about 20, Archers ran about 25, Cher. 6 was 30-35 and T-Arrows were 45-50. Our Seneca 2 was 100! Damn our court system and their law suits! That's all liability!!!! What a shame. Donps: Don't get wrong, I would like to see this airplane produced and I wish it well. It just seems a little too good to be true.Don

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