• Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Miles

  1. Thanks! I was thinking 180-200F so that pretty much nails it! I haven't had my smoker for long and I've been using it for smoking sausage that I'm making, but it'll do anything. It's easy to build a smoker too, and you should consider it before you go and drop a pile of cash at Cabela's or the like. Because I smoke lots of sausage at a time, I used an old Kelvinator fridge that I gutted(it can smoke about 120 lbs at a time), then threw and old BBQ burner in the bottom... and voila, you have a smoker.
  2. Hey Spinny that looks like it might be right up my alley, especially since I have a smoker I don't use all that often! Any guess as to what kind of temperature you might target?
  3. How recent are you speaking? There was a rumour a couple years ago that Deluce was attempting to pawn Porter to Westjet and Air Canada, but neither took the bait...
  4. Miles


    It was "Generation ME" out there in full force.. I wonder if all that bad parenting is finally reaping what was sowed?
  5. I've had to work in 4 different union environments over the years, and I've seen MORE examples of union members raping their own company in the name of 'screwing management' than the other way around. Except in Air Canada's case, from what I can see it seems to be 50-50.
  6. Miles


    I finally shut the news off at 12:45 am local YVR time last night, and here's my take. The police were NOT prepared for the extent of the trouble, and as far as I could tell, they really didn't mobilize until almost 12:30 am, which was obviously far too late at the majority of the damage(and injuries) were done. As for the rioters themselves, I'll classify what I saw 4 ways: 1) a small group of anarchists: These guys intended to spark a riot no matter who won the game, and had nothing to do with the game. The Mayor AND the police tried to blame these guys for the entire riot, however, I'm not convinced. They were prepared for trouble and were well organized and never took off their masks, since they knew better. They moved from place to place quickly and the hockey mob followed their trail of destruction and finished what they started. 2) angry drunk fans: These were the idiots who sometimes thought to cover their faces but more often than not exposed themselves to the camera while defacing property or antagonizing the police. Unprepared and stupid, they were obviously caught up in the moment and thought it was great fun, since there was so little police intervention they took every opportunity presented to them by other rioters(drunks and the anarchists) to burn, loot, fight, etc... all sporting great big grins on their faces as they proved how tough they were... Plenty of easy video and photographic evidence available to identify and convict these jacka55es 3) touristy onlookers: These idiots were particularly annoying. They didn't actually do any damage, yet there they were, in the middle of a riot loving every minute of it with big grins on their faces, posing for photos and videos in front of burning cars; some feigning outrage yet still standing there in the middle of it spectating for hours and loving the entertainment. Not just 'young men' either as the news would have you believe... many women egging the men on were also present in great numbers. As for age, yes there were a majority of 20-somethings and younger, but every age group was represented in this group. These people were also cheering on the active rioters and as far as I'm concerned they should be held just as accountable as the active rioters by preventing the police from doing their jobs properly. The CBC news crew had to deal constantly with these people who thought it would be great to get their faces on camera acting like it was a great party and a great time 'look-at-me-mom' expressions on their faces. The Facebook and Youtube generation were all out there in full force as hundreds of cameras and phones were recording all the 'fun'. 4) people who actually tried to stop trouble: Good for you for trying, but there weren't nearly enough of you, and you should have gotten the hell out of there so the police could have done their jobs properly.
  7. "Truly superior pilots are those who use their superior judgment to avoid those situations where they might have to use their superior skills."
  8. From that article I quoted, it looks like the pilots aren't solely to blame. The Airline can also be blamed for not training for a long standing known issue with the aircraft, and the manufacturer can also be blamed for being slow to fix the problem. But I say again, that failure should NOT have resulted in a hull loss. Sorry, in a hurry, gotta go Aviate, Navigate and Communicate.
  9. Why won't they just come out and say it? They flew through a thunderstorm. Heavy icing and turbulence at fl350??
  10. I'll have to do some more reading on the facts, but as I currently understand it, there was no failure that caused the plane to become unable to fly. Was it a tough situation to be in? Absolutely. Was it a guaranteed hull loss? From what I read, absolutely not. It's now up to the rest of us to learn from it and hope it never happens again.
  11. "encountered some turbulence and unexpectedly high icing at 35,000 feet" - thunderstorm? What came first, the chicken or the egg? I'm curious to know, was there any evidence of a hail encounter from the wreckage they found? I still think they first flew into a thunderstorm, then instruments failed. Sounds like the pilots screwed up first, then the aircraft screwed up second, finishing with a fatal screw up from the pilots.
  13. I think the AC LCC is probably a smoke screen. I think the true target is the pensions. CR must realize the pilots would never agree to such a set up as they're reporting in the news and it'll be a blame-the-pilots scenario when the deal fails, so they'll get the pension reform they sorely need as a 'secondary' conciliation.
  14. I was about to make the 'utilization' point as well, which last time I checked was over 12 hours/day/plane... one of the highest in North America I'm told.
  15. No kidding. It's actually laughable that over the years everything you have preached about could have educated Mr Steve Smith how to properly run an LCC, yet here we are staring at a possible Zip 2.0... The concept is simple, yet so few actually get it.
  16. ok, I'll bite: single type vs multiple types: higher costs associated with training; seniority issues can affect costs maintenance training parts inventory is probably huge at AC multiple pilot groups at AC... how many crews/plane does AC have vs WS? fleet age? reliability issues? Executive structure and pay: how many suits work in the upper echelon vs WS? What's their salary comparisons... bonuses... etc? I seem to recall Durfy's total pay was a power of 10 less that Milton's... for example... CSA's and Rampies what's the wage comparison and how many staff to do the same job? Just some things to think about. What I see from your arguments, Fido, is that you concede here and there a little of this and a little of that, but argue the companies have very little in the way of differences. I submit to you the CASM difference is hundreds of small differences adding up to something significant. What say you?
  17. Ah, because Fido says so, apparently.
  18. Air Canada’s plan to shake things up by launching yet another discount airline Can it learn from past mistakes? by Chris Sorensen on Monday, April 25, 2011 10:00am - 1 Comment Air Canada The late 1990s were heady days for penny-pinching North American air travellers. Southwest Airlines, Frontier and WestJet were shaking up the industry with rock-bottom airfares and an army of fresh-faced employees in golf shirts prone to making jokes over the cabin public-address system. Suddenly finding themselves under attack, big, bloated network carriers attempted to respond by rolling out their own discount outfits, splashed with spirited names like Ted (United Airlines), Song (Delta Air Lines), MetroJet (U.S. Airways) and Tango and Zip (Air Canada). The idea was to not only mimic their new rivals’ low prices (although not necessarily their low cost structures), but also the look and feel of a fresh upstart—sometimes with amusing results. “Somebody at United determined that one of the reasons Southwest was so successful was because they wore shorts,” says Marc-David Seidel, a professor at the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business, recalling a visit to the California operations of Shuttle by United, another big carrier discount attempt. “So, you know the classic pseudo-military United uniforms that are made out of polyester? They basically just took those and cut off the legs.” It gets worse. “One day management decided employees were supposed to have more ‘fun,’ so all these poor people were running around San Francisco airport wearing those little beanies with a propeller on top.” Needless to say, the strategy didn’t work, and Shuttle was scuttled in 2001. Most of the other “airline-within-an-airline” efforts met a similar fate. Now, a full decade later, Air Canada is once again toying with the idea. It’s trying to convince its unionized workers to support the creation of a new discount airline that would fly all-economy-class planes to various vacation destinations. But can Air Canada really make money on the cheap seats this time around? Though it’s far from clear whether the project will come to fruition after a key agreement with the airline’s pilots got bogged down last week, the reality is that Air Canada, which has seen its stock plunge nearly 90 per cent to around $2.40 since its post-restructuring IPO in late 2006, is steadily losing market share to younger, cheaper competitors such as WestJet, Transat and Toronto’s Porter Airlines. All this at a time when fuel prices, typically the second-biggest expense for an airline after labour, threaten to eat into already thin profit margins. It has no choice but to attempt a little shaking up of its own. The proposed carrier would compete head-on with low-cost packaged holiday sellers such as Montreal’s Transat AT, WestJet Vacations, Sunwing and Thomas Cook’s Sunquest Vacations to destinations in Europe, the southern United States, the Caribbean and Mexico, although some less profitable domestic routes could also be included, according to people familiar with the plans. The business model calls for the use of four of Air Canada’s older Boeing 767s and six Airbus A319s, although the fleet could eventually grow to 50 planes. That would likely include more of Air Canada’s older 767s, which are scheduled to be replaced with newer Boeing 787s beginning in 2013. The yet-to-be-named carrier would ideally be launched within the next 12 months, according to recent statements by Air Canada CEO Calin Rovinescu. “There’s a huge segment out there that Air Canada still has difficulty going after, and that’s the price-sensitive traveller,” says Steve Smith, who ran Air Canada’s last discount effort, Calgary-based Zip, until it was shuttered in 2004. “Take Florida, for example,” Smith says. “Everyone is looking for $99 fares and if they don’t get them, they don’t fly.” The long-term risk, argues Smith, is that some of the big players in the packaged holiday market, such as Montreal’s Transat, could one day become a viable long-haul alternative for travellers who aren’t wearing Bermuda shorts. And Air Canada, which managed a profit of $107 million in 2010, bouncing back from a loss of $24 million a year earlier, simply can’t afford to lose any more customers to its rivals. While Rovinescu is pitching the proposal as a growth opportunity, others suggest it is mostly a defensive manoeuvre. “You don’t make a lot of money flying people in flip-flops to Florida,” said one person with knowledge of the airline’s plans. “But maybe that helps you grow somewhere else.” The key ingredient is driving labour costs low enough to make the effort profitable, or at least a break-even proposition. “There are razor-thin margins in this market,” says Rob Kokonis, the president of Toronto-based airline consultancy AirTrav Inc. “That’s why so many leisure carriers have come and failed.” WestJet is one of the few exceptions. It has managed to stay mostly profitable despite high fuel prices and increased competition because its costs are roughly 30 per cent lower than Air Canada’s on any given route. In part, that’s because WestJet’s workforce is non unionized, but also because the airline operates a single aircraft type, helping to save on pilot training and maintenance costs. As a result, Air Canada is seeking a lower pay rate and more flexible work rules for pilots who work for the proposed discount carrier. But while negotiators for the two sides had hammered out a deal, officials at the pilots’ union called off a planned ratification vote last week because of members’ objections. Air Canada is also in talks with its other employee groups, including ground workers, ticket agents and flight attendants. Getting everyone on board will not be easy. Bill Trbovich, a spokesperson for the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, made it clear that the union’s 11,000 Air Canada maintenance and other ground personnel are more interested in clawing back previous concessions. “We took a pretty healthy pay cut to keep this airline afloat,” he says, criticizing concessions Air Canada’s pilots made with regard to pension plans for new hires. “The pilots have thrown their young to the dogs,” he says. “That’s not going to happen with us.” There’s also the significant challenge of building and marketing the new discount carrier. “All these airlines-within-an-airline, no matter the rationale, ended up duplicating too many of their costs, and it took management’s eyes off the ball, which is the parent corporation,” Kokonis warns. One of the few exceptions frequently cited by people familiar with Air Canada’s thinking is Australia’s Jetstar Airways, owned by the parent of Qantas Airways. Jetstar was launched in 2003 in response to the arrival of low-cost competitor Virgin Blue, and has since thrived alongside its bigger sibling. The bottom line is that Air Canada has much to gain and little to lose. Even if its third attempt at a discount airline turns out to be another flop, it won’t have shelled out extra money on new planes or back-end infrastructure. And it will have given itself a chance to experiment with new discount strategies and products that can later be incorporated with the mainline carrier. That’s what happened with Tango, launched in 2001 with its own planes and purple colour scheme. It was folded back into Air Canada as a fare class just two years later. Perhaps most importantly, creating a new discount carrier promises to usher in a new model of employee pay, benefits and work rules at Air Canada. While the new airline would be operated separately from the main carrier, likely with labour agreements that prohibit it from flying routes occupied by Air Canada’s better-paid pilots, Rovinescu is no doubt hoping that, if the gambit is successful, all of Air Canada’s unionized employees can be convinced that further cost-cutting is the road to the future. “It appears to me that they are trying to get lower-cost structures on the books,” says Seidel, emphasizing the need for Air Canada to more closely resemble its low-cost competitors. Minus the shorts and propeller hats, of course.
  19. like I said.... perfect example! lol
  20. so what's the alternative for the AC boys if ACPA implodes? There's at least 4 different groups within the pilot group at each other's throats already, and how are they going to agree on common representation?