Warbirds Online

Archive for May, 2007

Great Press Coverage of Temora Aviation Museum

May 29, 2007 12:00 pm

ABC in Australia did a fantastic story on the Temora Aviation Museum in their 7:30 Report today.  The video is really top notch and gives a great view on this wonderful flying collection in Australia.

The report gives the uneducated viewer (namely me, being from North America) a great background to the collection and some touching stories about the impact it has had on the region. I know that coverage like this on a museum in the states is enviable, so this is a great coup for the warbird community in Australia.

See the transcript and video by clicking this link.

Discuss it at the Warbird Information Exchange.

This Week In Military/Aviation History: 28 May – 2 June

May 28, 2007 8:54 am

Hello Folks,

Do you realize that next week I’ll have been doing this weekly post for six months already? Almost 26 weeks have gone by since I started. How am I doing? Why don’t you leave a comment and let me know. Do you realize how many trivia contests or free sodas you could have won with these snippets of history? A bunch! Memorial Day (observed) has come and gone and with it the unofficial start of the summer season. When I started it was the dead of winter. What a difference a few months make. Well, let’s get down to some history…

30 May 1912
Pioneer aviator Wilbur Wright died from typhoid fever.

2 June 1912
A machine-gun was fired from an airplane for the first time. Captain Charles de Forest Chandler of the United States Signal Corps fired a Lewis gun from a Wright Model B biplane piloted by Lieutenant Thomas de Witt Milling at Maryland, USA.

31 May 1915
German Zeppelin LZ38 made the first bombing raid on London, dropping 3,000 pounds of bombs, killing seven civilians and injuring fourteen.

1 June 1915
The United States Navy ordered their first airship, the A1 (DN1), from the Connecticut Aircraft Company.

30 May 1917
After flying overnight from Chicago, t United States Navy’s B1 dirigible (steerable airship) arrived at Akron, Ohio.

31 May 1917
Austrian pilot Linienschiffleutnant G. Banfield, at the controls of a Pfalz AII fighter, forced down an Italian seaplane, achieving the first Austro-Hungarian victory against enemy night-bombers.

June 1917
The first German Staaken RVI four-engine bomber became operational.

Show me more… »

This Week in Military/Aviation History 21-27 May

May 25, 2007 12:48 pm

Hello Folks,

Now that I’m running Microsoft Flight Simulator X, or MSFSX as it is known, I’ve had to switch my screen resolution from 800 X 600 to 1024 X 768 as MSFSX will accept no less and it became a royal pain to keep switching. My point is that this site looked a lot different in 800 X 600. It is, of course, set up for 1024 X 768, so, since I got used to the font being smaller, it’s so much nicer in 1024 X 768. It was almost like starting over for me. I am an older simmer and thought I needed the smaller (?) resolution. Turns out the screens are quite a bit clearer to me this way. I just have to make sure my glasses are absolutely clean before I start my ‘puter session. Hope your week went well. Now, let’s get down to some history…

25 May 1910
The Wright Brothers flew together for the first time at Dayton in Ohio.

22 May 1912
A United States Marine Corps officer was ordered to commence flying training.

24 May 1912
Anthony Fokker crashed his Goedecker-built B1912 monoplane at Berlin, just 10 days after he demonstrated it to the German Army.

21 May 1915
The Spad A2 biplane fighter underwent its first flight tests in France.

26 May 1915
Seventeen French Voisin biplanes of Groupe de Bombardment I conducted an attack on a strategic military target at Ludwigshafen in Germany.

Oberleutnant Kastner and Leutnant Georg Langhoff (observer) attacked and shot down a French Voisin in their Halberstadt C-type at Dournai in France. This was the first intentional attack by a German airplane on another armed airplane.

27 May 1915
Four days after Italy declared war, an Austrian Lohner L1 flying-boat was captured by the Italians off the Italian coast.

Show me more… »

Stearman Fatal Accident in Charleston, SC

May 23, 2007 11:56 pm

Sad news reaches us today from Charleston, SC.  An N2S Stearman crashed this evening in Charleston Harbor, killing both occupants.  The names of the deceased were not immediately available. 

For more information, view this article from the Charleston Post and Courier.

We will post more information as it becomes available.

Please see this thread at the Warbird Information Exchange for developments.

Operation Bolero II: Epic P-38 Journey to England

11:39 pm

From a Press Release found on the Warbird Information Exchange
Photo Courtesy: Provenance Fighter Sales / Simon Brown

Philadelphia, PA (May 22, 2007) On July 15, 1942, a United States Army-Air Force Squadron took off from America to aid our allies in the war torn European theatre: this mission was known as Operation Bolero. Due to insurmountable obstacles en route, the entire squadron of six P-38s and two B-17 bombers was forced to abort their mission and make an emergency crash landing on a remote ice cap in Greenland.

More than fifty-years later, “The Lost Squadron,” as it has become known over time, was encased in 268 feet of ice and had drifted miles from its original location. A recovery and restoration mission, taking more than 10 years and one million dollars, was successfully completed and the P-38 Lightning re-christened “Glacier Girl” was restored to her original flying glory.

On June 23rd 2007, General Henry Arnold’s 65 year-old directive to ferry this P-38 lightning to England will finally be completed. “Glacier Girl”, accompanied by “Miss Velma”, a P-51 Mustang, will depart from Jet Aviation at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey bound for the Flying Legends Air Show in Duxford, England. This trans-Atlantic mission, dubbed Bolero II, after the original WWII operation, remains as challenging as it is historic.

The world’s most advanced and exciting aviation website, www.AirShowBuzz.Com will provide unprecedented access to the flight thanks to Wingspeed, a company specializing in tracking, voice, and text communication for the professional aviation community. Viewers will be able to send questions to the pilots while in flight and receive answers from the cockpit. Wingspeed’s satellite network will also allow real time tracking of “Glacier Girl’s” historic journey. Experience “Glacier Girl’s” epic journey live and exclusively on www.AirShowBuzz.Com.

###

Glacier Girl and Miss Velma Scheduled Stops

DATES EVENTS NAT LOCATION
Jun 16, 2007 1st Leg Chino, CA
Jun 21, 2007 2nd Leg Middlesboro, KY
Jun 22, 2007 3rd Leg Teterboro, NJ
Jun 23, 2007 4th Leg Presque Isle, ME
Jun 25, 2007 5th Leg Goose Bay, Labrador, NL
Jun 25, 2007 6th Leg Frobisher Bay, NU
Jun 27, 2007 7th Leg Kangerlussuaq, GL
Jun 27, 2007 8th Leg Kulusuk, GL
Jun 29, 2007 9th Leg Reykjvik, IS
Jun 29, 2007 10th Leg Stornoway, GB
Jul 07-08, 2007 Flying Legends Duxford, Cambridgeshire, GB
Jul 09, 2007 11th Leg Duxford, Cambridgeshire, GB
Jul 09, 2007 12th Leg Stornoway, GB
Jul 10, 2007 13th Leg Reykjvik, IS
Jul 10, 2007 14th Leg Kulusuk, GL
Jul 11, 2007 15th Leg Kangerlussuaq, GL
Jul 11, 2007 16th Leg Frobisher Bay, NU
Jul 12, 2007 17th Leg Goose Bay, Labrador, NL
Jul 12, 2007 18th Leg Bangor, ME
Jul 12, 2007 Final Destination Oshkosh, WI

*Schedule subject to change

Air Zoo Receives Grumman Mallard Donation

8:32 pm

Though it was slated to happen this past Sunday, we just caught the news…

From Kalamazoo Air Zoo Museum:

On Sunday, May 20, a 1947 Grumman Mallard is scheduled to land at its new home at the Air Zoo and become the newest addition to the museum’s collection, thanks to the donation of Roland LaFont.

The Mallard is a large, twin-engine amphibious aircraft that was built between 1946 and 1951 and was designed for regional airline operations such as harbor-based city-to-city flights. Of the 59 Mallards produced, the aircraft that will be donated to the Air Zoo was number 14. Today, approximately 32 Mallards remain registered in the United States.

The Mallard has been a “dream plane” of LaFont, who resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He acquired it in 1993. When he decided to donate the plane to an aviation museum, he turned to the Internet to research museums nation-wide to find the right resting place for his aircraft.

He typed “aviation museums” in a search engine and clicked on the first entry: Air Zoo. After looking through the Air Zoo’s website, LaFont decided not to look any further—he knew had found the perfect home for his beloved plane.

“The Mallard represents a unique period in aviation history and is unlike any other aircraft in the Air Zoo’s collection,” says Bob Ellis, executive director of the Air Zoo.

“The romance of flying boats and ability to fly to exotic ports is all but lost in the hectic and completely unromantic airline transportation of today.”

The Mallard will eventually be put on display on the Air Zoo’s Main Campus.

Editors Note: The SW Aviator Magazine covered this plane in a past issue, click here to see that article with photos (photo above from SW Aviator Magazine)

There has been some discussion on the donation of this, a flyable plane, to a static museum on the Warbird Information Exchange, click here to join the discussion.

Westland Lysander for Vintage Wings of Canada

3:35 pm

Press Release Courtesy of Mike Henniger 

Vintage Wings of Canada is pleased to announce the acquisition of another aircraft to the Gatineau based collection. A Westland Lysander has been obtained from Anna Whereatt of Assiniboia, Saskatchewan, Canada. This particular example is a Mark IIIa which was operated by the Royal Canadian Air Force during WWII as serial number 2365.

Anna along with her husband Harry, obtained the Lysander in 1977, one that had spent much time in open storage on a farm. It was one of two reasonably complete airframes in addition to four other Lysanders which were used as parts sources, all of which were obtained from various locations from the mid-1960s to the mid-1970s. The Whereatt family progressed the restoration of 2365 over the years and it is now complete. Although 2365 has not been flown since the work was completed it is in very good condition. Michael Potter, founder of Vintage Wings, comments “It will undergo a deep airframe survey and we will have both the engine and propeller overhauled. Until we have the airplane on hand and develop a plan, we are unable to estimate the date of its first flight. Currently we believe that we can do that within 18 months. We will be transporting it to Gatineau over the next week and hope to have it on hand for visitors by the end of the month.”

The acquisition of the Lysander is an important one. The fighter and trainers are well represented in the Vintage Wings collection, but utility aircraft like the Lysander are not. Lysanders were often used in target towing roles in Canada and perhaps are most well known for clandestine operations into France during WWII in support of the Free French. The mission of Vintage Wings is to inspire and educate future generations about the historical significance of our aviation heritage and the Lysander will be a great aid in doing so. This means there are many potential paint schemes. Michael Potter comments, “We do not know how it will be painted. There are so many wonderful stories about this imposing but peculiar airplane and we will certainly want to do something to stimulate interest in this fascinating part of WWII history.” You can be assured the Vintage Wings historical team is looking for a colour scheme which will allow the Lysander crews to be commemorated and future generations to be inspired.

The Whereatt family is happy the Lysander is staying in Canada. They recently visited the Vintage Wings hangar and inspected an airframe formerly owned by Harry, a Hurricane Mk XII, s/n 5447. They were impressed with the hangar, but even more pleased with the crew and are confident the Lysander is going to a good home. Join the discussion on this topic at the Warbirds Information Exchange.

This Week in Military/Aviation History: 14-20 May

May 17, 2007 7:57 pm

Hello Folks,

You may have noticed I revised the title of this post from “Military Aviation” History to “Military/Aviation” History. I feel this gives me a bit more “wiggle room” to choose historic events to post. More work for me, but that’s OK. I’ve got all the time I need to type them and I hope you Folks have all the time you need to read them. Ok, let’s get down to history.

Be Safe,
Tom K. ;)

14 May 1908
Charles W. Furnas of Dayton, Ohio became the first aircraft passenger. One of the Wright brothers’ mechanics, Wilbur Wright took him on a flight of 1,968 feet which lasted 29 seconds at Kill Devil Hills in Kittyhawk, North Carolina.

16 May 1911
Delag passenger carrying Zeppelin LZ8 “Ersatz Deutschland” was destroyed in a docking accident, but there were no casualties.

14 May 1915
The United States Navy ordered its first airship from the Connecticut Aircraft Company.

18 May 1916
Lieutenant Kiffin Rockwell of the Escadrille Americaine, became the first American pilot to shoot down an enemy aircraft.

14 May 1917
Zeppelin LZ64 (L22) was shot down by a British flying boat with the loss of all hands.

15 May 1917
German Lieutenant Heinrich Gontermann was awarded the Pour le Merite. Gontermann achieved eighteen victories against Allied balloons, once shooting down four in three minutes. He was killed in a crash while testing a new Fokker DRI.

Show me more… »

This Week In Military/Aviation History: 7-13 May

7:55 pm

Hello again Folks,

Yet another week has flown by. Today I became the happy owner of a working copy of Flight Simulator 10 (FSX-Generic version, not Deluxe). You see, I bought a new system in order to be able to play this hummer. The only things I kept from my old system was the cd and dvd drives. Well, I tried to install it and it wouldn\’t install. This was about four months ago. Spoke to my \’puter guru and he said I needed to upgrade the drives as far as he knew. Well, I kept putting it off and putting it off, and finally took it in today. Turns out, in the meantime he found out about a compatibility problem between one part of one of the programs I had and Microsoft items. So he removed the offending component and Bada-Bing, Bada-Boom! FSX installed no problem. I did double my RAM to 1 Gig, per his suggestion. I was planning on spending a lot more for the drives so I went for the RAM, still got off cheap. I fooled around with it for a bit (3 very quick hours) and can\’t wait to get back to it. Hope your week went well also. Well, what say we look back for a bit and see what happened in history this week.

Be Safe,
Tom K. ;)

10 May 1911
Lt. G.E.M. Kelly became the second Army officer killed in an airplane.

7 May 1912
An American Wright biplane, flown by Lieutenant Thomas De Witt Milling at College Park, Maryland, became the first airplane to be armed with a machine gun.

9 May 1912
In Sydney, William Hart was fined 20 Pounds for causing a herd of cattle to stampede by flying over it.

10 May 1913
Didier Masson dropped bombs from an airplane on Mexican gunships in Guaymas Bay.

11 May 1915
Continuous airship raids on England were ordered by the German High Command.

10 May 1916
The French Air Force placed an order for 268 Spad VII fighters.

7 May 1917
The first night bombing raid on London by an airplane took place.

11 May 1918
The American Expeditionary Force received the first United States built de Havilland DH4.

Show me more… »

F-35 helmet, designed by anime artist?

May 15, 2007 11:05 am

F-35 Helmet Display System To Scare the Bejeezus Out of Enemies


Full Article: Gizmodo

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