News, facts, and comments on the coming revolution for piston-engine aircraft.
In 1998, one diesel engine flew on a converted airplane for the first time since 1945. Today, close to 4,000 singles and twins are flying. This is the beginning of a worldwide trend which will eventually allow a rebirth of the piston-engined aircraft, around new specs and new missions.
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News of July 05, 2008
Owners Group Questions Thielert’s Motives - Files for creditor action to defend against predatory practices
LOUISVILLE, June 23, 2008 – The Thielert Engine Owners Group (THENOG) representing aircraft owners worldwide with Thielert engines today reiterated its intent to file for creditor status in the companies insolvency hearings, saying the company has been unresponsive. ‘Based on what we have seen so far, the only way Thielert engine owners will get relief is to band together and exert pressure as a group,’ ‘said Dr. Todd House, President of YourJet LLC and a founder and director of THENOG. ‘It is the interests of every Thielert owners to join the group,’ he said. Particularly troubling to owners is the issue of engine warranties and spare parts costs and availability. On May 27, insolvency administrator Dr. Bruno Kuebler announced that the company would not honor engine warranties. However, in a press release dated June 18, the company said it would resume full production of engines and parts and added: ‘For its newly manufactured engines, Thielert provides customers with a full warranty of quality in accordance with EU regulations.’ ‘We have asked Thielert whether they will honor their existing commitments, and we get no response,’ said Vilis Ositis, a THENOG founder and board member. We have asked to see a copy of the new warranty Thielert says it will provide for new engines and Thielert has not produced it,’ he said. ‘If Thielert refuses to honor the engine-life extension commitment for existing engines, it drives the operating cost of the engines out of sight and makes them totally uneconomical,’ he said. ‘In Thielert June 18 press release the issue of the life extension program for existing customers is not addressed. And repeated attempts to get answers from the company on that issue have gone unanswered,’ Ositis said. Neither Thielert nor Dr. Kuebler has made any explanation of how the company would deal with the troubling issue of the Centurion engine life extension program for existing engine owners. Since the Centurion I and II engines are relatively new and have limited operational history, they were certified with an aggressive program of inspections and replacements designed to increase the certified Time Between Replacement from 1,200 hours to 2,400 hours. Thielert, as part of the original warranty program and in accordance with certification stipulations, agreed to pay for many inspections and to subsidize the cost of early replacements in order to gather data required to extend engine life to normal industry standards. ‘We think the way Thielert is treating existing customers is absolutely appalling,’ said Dr. House. ‘How can they can offer warranties on new engines and parts, when less than a month ago, they cancelled all their existing warranties and quadrupled the price of parts?’ Thielert appears to be exploiting its virtual monopoly on engines and parts to squeeze money out of existing owners,’ Dr. House said. ‘It is not just a matter of fairness,’ he said. ‘It is a safety-of-flight issue.’ ‘Our group recommends that no one purchase any Thielert engine or parts until these issues are resolved,’ House said. ‘It is clear that the administrator is trying to create an impression of normality and continuity whilst nothing can be further from the truth.’ ‘It is in all our interests to ensure that there is a swift conclusion to this current position and we will use our creditor position to enforce that,’ he said. ‘We have established THENOG as a substantial creditor to Thielert due to the cumulative value of warranty agreements for our engines, said Ositis. ‘Given the number of owners we represent we will have a strong vote on the committee that will allow us to direct the outcome of the insolvency. Furthermore we are aggressively positioning ourselves to play a pivotal role in the post administration realties that will face any acquirer of the Thielert product line.’ The Thielert Engine Owners Group (THENOG) was formed in May to protect the investment and safety of nearly 1,000 affected aircraft owners, including about 900 owner/operators of Diamond Aircraft DA42 twin-engine and DA 40 single-engine aircraft. Many of those aircraft are currently grounded and nearly all may be rendered uneconomical to operate, depending on the outcome of the Thielert situation. Based on the Thielert current pricing structure and on the cancellation of warranties to existing customers, the maintenance and overhaul cost of operating a new Thielert engine is $85 per hour for existing customers. The group has hired legal counsel in Germany to represent engine owners in the Thielert insolvency case. Owners and operators of Thielert-powered aircraft are encouraged to visit the THENOG website, www.thenog.org , where they can join the group and provide feedback on their experiences with Thielert and/or Diamond Aircraft. Contact info: 1513 Rosewood Avenue, Louisville, KY 40204-1549. Ken Shapero. U.S. (502) 314-3079.
posted at 3:54 PM
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Every month: news, facts, and comments on the coming revolution for piston-engines aircrafts between 130 and 400 HP: Retrofitting a diesel engine to run on Jetfuel or Kerosene, reduce Gallons/Hour by some 30%, eliminate ignition systems (magnetos, spark plugs) and their problems, eliminate mixture control, increase TBO to 2,400-3,000 hours, increase performance between 6,000 and 12,500 ft., and drastically reduce Operating Costs.
The letter is intended for piston engines aircraft owners, manufacturers, fleet operators and FBOs, re-manufacturers of engines for these aircrafts, manufacturers of engine components and ancillaries, and all professionals acting in decisions of engine exchange or refitting at TBO, in North and South America, Pacific Rim, African continent, and all parts of the world were Avgas, Mogas, Kerosene and Jetfuel are available.
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