Summer at Oshkosh 2014

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Oshkosh 2014 will go down in history due to the half-million attendees walking the AirVenture grounds this year. The general aviation parking areas were full to capacity, while Whittman Regional Airport controllers had to turn away aircraft to land at other airports. People of all ages crowded the hangars to see the newly featured aircraft and lined up for the first-ever appearance of the Air Force Thunderbirds. Whether you were meeting up with old time pals, stopping by your favorite booths, or this was you first ever Air Venture experience, you were sure to have an unforgettable time.

The amount of aircraft that came to Oshkosh this year was unbelievable. We were able to witness over 2,649 aircraft- including Ultralights, Seaplanes, Light-sport aircraft, Warbirds, Rotorcraft, Aerobatic aircraft, Homebuilt, Vintage airplanes, and Hot-air balloons. The One Week Wonder was also being assembled at Oshkosh by EAA members’ and any Oshkosh attendee wanting to help with the 25,000 rivets needed to complete the airplane. The aircraft was then cleared for take-off on August 5th, for its first flight.

The airshows were incredible this year. If you stayed around after the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday shows, you were able to see Air Ventures first Valdez STOL demonstration competition flights.  Although everyone cheered each other on, a competition is still a competition! Frank Knapp took first place with a winning distance of 134 feet. Knapp stated, “The people here really care about general aviation, and I think the normal guy can really relate to this and our lifestyle.”

There has been a lot of talk about the new aircraft coming out and we have answers. At a press briefing on July 28th, Dale Klapmeier, CEO and founder of Cirrus Aircraft, said the company is on track to deliver the first production examples of the SF50 Vision personal jet to customers before the end of 2015. The seven seat, single-engine jet has been under development for a number of years, and currently has 550 orders waiting for production. EAA’s French diesel-engine manufacturer SMA updated the attendees on its new 4 cylinder engine offerings. The company is working with Cessna and Lycoming to prepare for deliveries of Cessna’s Turbo Skylane 182 JT-A certification. Last year, SMA presented SR460, a six cylinder concept diesel, which was designed to offer 350-400 hp. The world’s fastest certified single-engine piston aircraft is the Mooney M20TN Acclaim Type S with a cruise speed of 242 knots. The first new Mooney aircraft was on display throughout the fly-in and was sold through an online auction for $646,000. The entire amount will be donated toward the Mooney History Museum at the company’s Kerrville, Texas, campus.

Air Venture at Oshkosh was definitely one to remember. We want to thank the 5,400 volunteers and all of the passionate aviators who made this all possible. All of us at AirFleet Capital enjoyed meeting with you and thank you for stopping by our Airplane Financing booth- we value our passionate aviation enthusiasts who enjoy general aviation and the community as much as we do.  See you all next year and safe travels!

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Fly-In Convention at Oshkosh 2014

 

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Oshkosh Unraveled – a look back at AirVenture 2010!

AirFleet Capital has returned from a week at EAA AirVenture 2010.  Despite the torrential rains that threatened to turn the World’s Greatest Aviation Celebration into a wash-out, thousands still rallied to Oshkosh, Wisconsin (temporarily coined “Galosh-kosh”) for the event!  The weather during the show was great and with new daily events, a revamped Warbird area, the first-ever EAA Aircraft Auction, and revolutionary indoor plumbing in Hangar C – it was another great year!  AirFleet Capital was there to discuss aircraft financing with customers in our usual Hangar A space as well as “all-hands-on-deck” in the Auction Center helping bidders and sellers prepare for the main Auction event on Saturday, July 31st.  We are looking forward to many more to come!

We spoke with many customers interested in financing a new purchase, as well as those looking ahead to the next year as a purchase time frame.  It is always great to meet our current customers face to face at AirVenture each year, as well as new customers looking to employ our assistance for their aircraft ownership goals.  A big thanks to everyone who stopped by to see us. We look forward to seeing you again next year – Happy Flying!

Countdown to AirVenture 2010!

It’s that time of year again! Somehow AirVenture always has a way of sneaking up on us.  Each year is an exciting one in Oshkosh, Wisconsin as aviation enthusiasts gather together at the busiest airport in the world during that week. For those of us staffing the show, it’s one of the busiest weeks of the year… it is also the one we look back on most fondly – and with EAA’s 2010 lineup (exciting new events including the EAA Spirit of Aviation Auction and the first-ever night airshow), it is assured that this year will be no different!

If you plan on attending the show, please stop by and visit us!  AirFleet Capital will be on-hand to discuss any financing questions you may have. With great values on aircraft and the ability to fix historically low rates for up to 20 years… it is a great time to think about purchasing, upgrading, or refinancing!  Our Main AirFleet Capital Booth is located in Hangar A, Booth 1143.  We will also be on-hand in the Piper Booth (140 – 161), Diamond Booth (235 – 246), and Auction Center (located North of Aeroshell Square, East of the Control Tower, in front of the Brown Arch).  Safe travels to OSH – we look forward to seeing you all there!

For more information on EAA AirVenture 2010, visit:  www.AirVenture.org

Oshkosh (AirVenture) Un-wound

AV_Gate_EHLThe world’s largest aviation exhibition – EAA’s AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin – came to a close on August 2nd.  Perfect weather, a first appearance by the Airbus A380 to Oshkosh, and the roll-out of Virgin Galactic’s White Knight 2 (to be renamed the Virgin Mother Ship), helped bring-out the largest crowd Oshkosh had seen in years.

While the General Aviation market has suffered, in part due to the downturn in the economy and in part due to the demonization of corporate air travel, we were impressed with the strength and quality of prospects surfing the show grounds during the week.  Year-over-year, the overall level of activity versus 2008 was constant.  However, the quality of the activity was off the charts compared to what we’ve seen the past 4 years.

Not since 2003 had we seen such strong activity both at our booth and at others.   A couple recreational aircraft manufactures reported sales at the show, while distributors of everything from magazines to headsets reported sales unexpectedly well above normal.  The folks who run the show advised that attendance increased 14% over 2008, and felt that the aviation public was probably choosing just one show to attend this year, and Oshkosh was their choice.  However, we’ve notice the last few general aviation shows have had higher than expected attendance (the Northwest Fly-In in Arlington, Washington was similarly up nearly 15% this year).  Perhaps it’s moreso a matter of our collective consciousnesses digging out from a long winter in the basement and dusting off the cobwebs.

Perhaps the best example of the shift in attitude at Oshkosh this year came from an attendee who was considering upgrading his airplane.  He remarked on the attitude of the economists that consumer spending will not rebound very quickly.  This owing to the opinion that we are supposed to have learned from this downturn and are going to be much more careful in racking-up credit card debt while we build our savings more aggressively.  His comment – “We’re Americans!  We work hard so we can afford to go out for nice dinners and enjoy the pleasures of life.”   The levels of activity at AirVenture Oshkosh 2009 seem to support his claim – that consumers may be returning to what they do best – consuming.