Belfort Instrument Company
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Mark W. Decker's BOLD LIE: The Wright Brother Relied on us!
Mr. Mark W. Decker (Crownsville, Maryland) came to Belfort Instrument Company in the Fall of 2001 following the filing of Chapter 7 bankruptcy at Mentor Technologies Group (Annapolis, MD) as noted at: http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=100501 where he served as the firm's CEO and President for a period dating back at least 3 years. Hired as the President of Belfort Instruments, he was primarily responsible for getting the DigiWx weather system certified by the FAA. It is noteworthy as of 2013 (over 12 years later) that only two weather instruments on this Belfort AWOS system have been FAA certified while all the remaining weather sensors (eg. wind direction, wind speed, temperature, dewpoint, relative humidity, precipitation, ceilometer) are not FAA certified nor FAA Approved weather sensors. Partial preliminary certification was granted in 2004 for the "barometer setting" of the DigiWx AWOS AV-100 system. Because the Belfort visibility sensor was previously included on Coastal Environmental System's OS-21 "certified" weather station for the Air Force, Belfort then made the leap in their marketing ads that their visibility sensor on the DigiWx system was also "certified." If you're a pilot relying on a DigiWx weather system as your primary source of weather info when flying, you should be warned to proceed VERY cautiously! As a lead-up to the certification of only the "barometer setting" on the DigiWx AWOS system, Belfort president Mark W. Decker directly initiated the development of an advertising campaign that culminated in print ads and t-shirts which boldly proclaimed "The Wright Brothers Relied on Us" as found on the last page (page 19) of this MS Powerpoint presentation: http://www.rap.ucar.edu/general/Summer2012/FPAW_2012_Summer_Presentations/Seg%204%20Surface%20Observations%20Riger%20Sultan/Petragnani%20surface%20obs%20(2).pdf Mr. Mark W. Decker even authored a press release which read "The Wright Brothers monitored these (i.e. Belfort/Friez) instruments as they prepared for their famous flight on December 17th, 1903." as noted at: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2003/6/prweb67805.php Well, for the benefit of Mr. Decker and the other management figureheads at Belfort Instrument Company (Bruce R. Robinson, Nicholas C. Kaufman, Ralph F. Petragnani, Debra S. Alascio, Ellen H. Robinson), American history tells a very different story! Here is what the Wright Brothers actually wrote on December 17, 1903: "We had a 'Richard' hand anemometer with which we measured the velocity of the wind. Measurements made just before starting the first flight showed velocities of 11 to 12 meters per second, or 24 to 27 miles per hour. Measurements made just before the last flight gave between 9 and 10 meters per second. One made just after showed a little over 8 meters." And then there are indisputable pictures of: Orville and then Wilbur Wright holding (and using a Richard's Anemometer) at: http://core.libraries.wright.edu/handle/2374.WSU/827/browse?value=Anemometer&type=subject The LIARS at Belfort Instrument Company (past & present) are intent on trying to re-write history to include mention of Belfort and/or Friez in the same sentence with the Wright Brothers. This is an *** shame and a sham! Buy anything except Belfort Instrument Company Digiwx AWOS.
Belfort Instruments DigiWx AWOS Fiasco
Have you heard about the Meadow Lake Airport AWOS Fiasco? Quoting, http://meadowlake-airport.com/AWOS.htm reads in short: "Executive Conclusion: Of the four candidate AWOS manufacturers, only two meet the threshold and objective system performance levels. These are systems provided by All Weather Inc (AWI) and Vaisala. The SuperAWOS by Potomac Aviation does not pass an initial cut due to maintenance problems encountered with their SuperUnicom installed at Meadow Lake airport." "The Belfort Digi WX "AWOS" is not a true FAA fully commissionable AWOS. Its complete sensor suite is not certified. Installation of this system at 00V means that we would not have our weather data (METAR) accessible in the federal database which means that Flight Service and other sites such as ADDS, XM weather, WSI, etc would not not have Meadow Lake weather data. The only certified weather info would be altimeter and visibility. While this does allow Part 91 and 135 instrument approaches, the inability to incorporate its complete METAR data in the federal system is a deal-breaker." "The apparent initial cost savings of the initial Belfort DigiWx acquisition is minimal and not worth the lack of functionality and usefulness to the national aviation community. Life-cycle cost of the Belfort system over 15 years is over $27,000 higher than the Vaisala system." "It would not allow us to transition to a three letter airport identifier." "Bottom line is that the Belfort system represents false economy, minimal pilot usefulness and is inconsistent with providing the aviation community services that make this airport attractive to current and future pilots and businesses." "Of the remaining systems offered by AWI and Vaisala, Vaisala is the preferred system." The complete report highlighting DigiWx shortcomings can be found at: http://meadowlake-airport.com/AWOSanalysis.doc Here just a sampling of what some airports with DigiWx said in Ron Lee's report: 1) Greenville, IL (GRE): "prefer Vaisala" 2) Ingersoll Canton, OH (CTK): "pilots donÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½t like it" 3) Lake In The Hills, IL (3CK): "wind speed info inaccurate. system goes down during every thunderstorm." 4) Central Maine, ME (OWK): "gives incorrect info. want to take it out." 5) Ravilli County, MY (6S5): "winds and temp are advisory in recording." 6) Ocean City, NJ (26N): "would get a Vaisala next time." 7) Darke County, OH (KVES): "not working yet on radio...only by phone." And how about these "former" DigiWx AWOS sites which are no longer working: 1) http://www.digiwx-m01.com 2) http://www.digiwx-2m8.com 3) http://www.digiwx-riovistao88.com 4) http://www.digiwx-driggs-reed.com 5) http://www.digiwx-moriarty.com 6) http://www.digiwx-79s.com 7) http://www.digiwx-buckeye.com Is this the kind of unreliable weather stations that the aviation community needs? I think NOT! And one last thing: Why would the Belfort Instrument Company LIE about their involvement with the Wright Brothers? Go read one of their press releases, then come back and read this: Belfort Digiwx AWOS LIE #1 The Wright Brothers did not use Belfort or Friez wind sensors at any time for anything. The Wright Brothers Relied exclusively on a Richard's Anemometer to record wind speed and direction. Here is a history documenting the definitive proof including a picture of Wilbur Wright actually using Richard's anemometer. DON'T LET ANYONE TELL YOU DIFFERENTLY! THE HISTORY: Octave Chanute responded to Wilbur's letter on May 12th, 1901. He suggested that Wilbur specify whether he wanted to use the English [Robinson, a cup type] or French anemometer [Richard of Paris, a rotating vane type] at the appropriate time. [An anemometer is an instrument used to determine the wind's speed. The English anemometer is a Robinson anemometer, a cup type. The French anemometer is by Richard of Paris and is a rotating vane type.] http://wings.avkids.com/Book/Wright/history1_190 /> WILBUR WRIGHT TO OCTAVE CHANUTE Dayton, Ohio, May 17, 1901 "As to anemometer we are inclined to think that we would prefer the nonrecording Richard's instrument as our chief use for it will be measuring velocities for very brief periods." http://invention.psychology.msstate.edu/i/Wright /> RICHARD ANEMOMETER The Wrights borrowed this French-made, hand-held anemometer from Octave Chanute and used it to measure wind speeds during their flight tests at Kitty Hawk. http://www.nasm.si.edu/wrightbrothers/fly/1900/t /> TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 1903 An anemometer, or wind gauge, is an instrument for measuring the force and speed of wind. The earliest anemometer was invented by Thomas Romney Robinson (1793 - ****). This gauge uses an arrangement of cups on a spindle to detect the wind and a series of clockwork connections to translate the speed of the rotating cups to a wind speed value. Octave Chanute, the Wright's French colleague, brought them a later anemometer made by Richard of Paris. http://www.centennialofflight.gov/2003FF/sept.ht /> WRITINGS OF THE WRIGHT BROTHERS (Final Prep) "We had a "Richard" hand anemometer with which we measured the velocity of the wind. Measurements made just before starting the first flight (December 17, 1903) showed velocities of 11 to12 meters per second, or 24 to 27 miles per hour. Measurements made just before the last flight (December 17, 1903) gave between 9 and 10 meters per second. One made just after showed a little over 8 meters." WILBUR WRIGHT ACTUALLY USING RICHARD'S ANEMOMETER (picture) http://www.exn.ca/FlightDeck/Aviators/wright3.cf /> What else are the figureheads at Belfort Instrument Company lying about? I WONDER.... and YOU SHOULD TOO!
Spring City, Pennsylvania
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Belfort Instrument Company