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About toto

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  1. The thing about a kit plane is that the build process has to be super tight -- an amateur needs to be able to put it together in 2000 hours (or, hey, 1000 hours for the quick build with some preassembly). Since a whole team of trained progressional aircraft builders takes 5000 hours to build a new Ultra, a kit is going to be a hard sell. I would love the hell out of a J kit, but not if it takes me 10,000 hours to assemble. On the other hand, if they could get the process streamlined to a point where a 2000-hour kit is a possibility, then we've got the mythical $300k J. Because then the factory could presumably do it in 1000
  2. It's a Netgear Zing. I have no idea whether they still offer this device, but it came as pictured here. There was no FreedomPop branding at all. I bought it a few years ago for $19.99, and they bizarrely sent me a Franklin R850 as a "bonus" with the shipment. I couldn't work out why a second cellular hotspot was the bonus offer when purchasing a cellular hotspot, but there you go.
  3. I may be in the minority here, but I think it should matter to Mooney that there are a bunch of customers out there who own their products. The fact that an individual owner hasn't purchased parts from the factory should be seen by Mooney as a business challenge (and potentially a business opportunity). But it certainly shouldn't be a reason not to have factory reps keep an open line of communication with the MS community.
  4. But seriously, is the MAPA listserv the place to find factory reps? Or some other forum? I haven't seen anyone from the factory here at MS, but I dunno.
  5. Well, I guess I'm thinking of the 10000-odd customers who currently own a Mooney aircraft (and who are likely current or future parts and service customers). Those of us who have a clear, vested interest in the future of the company.
  6. The programmer is this thing: It's about $70, also available from just about every aviation retailer for the same price. My cost for a 430W dropped from about $450/year for the Jepp data to about $300/year for the Garmin data, so I made back the price of the card writer in 6 months. I can't tell the difference between the Jepp data and the Garmin data. Note that you can continue using the Jepp chips if you buy a Garmin programmer, but you can't use the Jepp programmer for Garmin data.
  7. Serious question, though.. Are there any Mooney factory reps that frequent MS? Or is there a different forum where they regularly communicate with their customers?
  8. I actually think there would be a ton of buyers for a $300k J model. In all seriousness, that's about what you would spend on a "better than new"-type refurbishment a la N205J. And you'd have a brand-new plane, with none of the gotchas hiding in decades of chicken-scratch logbook entries.
  9. I know we aren't all going to go buy brand-new airplanes this week, but does anyone know for sure whether this merchandise store linked from the home page actually produces revenue for Mooney? If so, I could imagine some holiday gifts being purchased by the MS group.
  10. We could organize a group buy? Everyone chip in ten bucks, or? Wait, how many MSers are there?
  11. The Kerrville paper just published an article yesterday saying that Cubcrafters had been using targeted Facebook posts to court Mooney workers.
  12. Here's a photo from when I was first playing around. The basic gist is a WiFi smart plug (about $10) and a FreedomPop hotspot ($19.99). The data service was zero dollars per month, so the all-in cost was thirty bucks. (Well, I actually deployed this in a small DriBOX that cost another $15 or so.) Anyway, total cost around $40 or $45, with a $0 monthly.
  13. There's a product called SwitchBox that does basically this for $300 or so. (This page also includes a comparison article from AC, but it's oldish.) I made one of these myself - I'll see if I can dig up a photo
  14. Aren't there are lots of these switches already available?