Springfield, Ohio-based Spectra Jet has been issued new operations specifications that cover every Learjet, including the 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 and 70 series. “Our trained technicians, support equipment and facility are poised to support both new and classic aircraft,” a spokesman for the company said. Spectra Jet, which specializes in Learjet maintenance and service, was founded by former Learjet field service reps.
The new Bombardier Learjet 75 began a nearly four-week Latin America demonstration tour today. The light jet, which received FAA certification in December, will visit cities in Mexico, Panama, Colombia, Guatemala, Brazil and Chile from today through March 28. It will be on static display during Aero Expo in Toluca, Mexico, from tomorrow through Saturday and FIDAE in Santiago, Chile, from March 25 to 31.
Bombardier’s Learjet 85 program is moving toward first flight (if it hasn’t already happened after this issue went to press), but the company’s plans to achieve certification and begin customer deliveries this year appear to be unachievable.
The Raisbeck aft fuselage locker for the Learjet 60 has completed all of the FAA-required certification tests, the company said yesterday. The test aircraft, S/N 60-197, is now in refurbishment at West Star Aviation, where it will receive a full paint job and interior update before redelivery to its owner. Raisbeck’s Learjet 60 aft fuselage locker adds 30 cu ft of storage space and closely resembles its earlier lockers designed and certified for 30-series Learjets.
Trisoft Covers, based in Sarasota, Fla., has developed foam protective panels for Learjet delta fins. The lightweight panels are designed to protect not only the airframe but also workers, who have been known to bang their heads on the ventral-mounted surfaces. Made of sun-, heat- and cold-resistant XLPE foam, the panels protect the aircraft surfaces from dropped tools, flashlights, spray cans and other hazards. The kits are intended for indoor use only, and include panels and clamps. Cost is $655.95 for the Learjet 31 and 45, and $965.95 for the Learjet 60.
The Learjet 85 is one step closer to beginning its flight-testing phase after the announcement yesterday by Bombardier that the FAA issued the jet’s first flight-test permit. Engineers have run flight test vehicle 1’s (FTV1) Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307Bs and completed low-speed taxi testing. Before the first flight, preparations will include finalizing “the configuration of the aircraft, more engine runs and high-speed taxi tests,” according to Bombardier.
Bombardier Aerospace delivered 180 business jets last year, up one from 2012. However, the Canadian aircraft manufacturer missed its 2013 guidance by 10 business airplanes, “mainly due to the transition from the Learjet 40XR and Learjet 45XR to the Learjet 70 and Learjet 75, which entered service in the fourth quarter.” The company originally expected deliveries of these revamped light jets to start in the third quarter. It shipped 29 Learjets, 89 Challengers and 62 Globals last year, compared with 39 Learjets, 86 Challengers and 54 Globals in 2012.
Bombardier Aerospace scored a flurry of orders for 58 Challenger and Global business jets worth nearly $3 billion late last month, allowing the Montreal-based aircraft manufacturer to end the year on a high note. Including these 11th-hour orders, the company sold some 310 business jets last year.
Flexjet is offering two limited-time offers–25 Challenger 300 upgrade hours and “60 for 50”–to spur fractional jet ownership sales in its Learjet and Challenger programs. Until December 31, new and existing Flexjet owners purchasing a one-sixteenth share in a Learjet 40XR, 45XR or 60XR will have the opportunity to upgrade 25 of their annual allocated hours, at their same Learjet hourly occupied rate, to a Challenger 300.
The Bombardier Learjet 75 light jet–a longer-range version of the Learjet 45 with Garmin G5000 integrated avionics, winglets and more efficient Honeywell TFE731-40BR engines–received FAA certification on Thursday. Deliveries have already begun for U.S. and Canadian customers, a Bombardier Aerospace spokeswoman told AIN. Certification and delivery efforts are pending for its smaller sibling, the Learjet 70.