Skip to content

National Naval Aviation Museum—Movement

9 February 2019

Recently taken media showing movement taken in the National Naval Aviation Museum. An experiment inspired by Deano of Aces Flying High.

Airfield’s rotating beacon in the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Faithful full scale replica of the Curtiss Triad (the ancestor to all Naval Aviation) in the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Impressions of the National Naval Aviation Museum—©2019 Catherine Dowman/Travel for Aircraft

Advertisements

Duxford’s Heinkel He 162 A-2 Volksjäger

7 February 2019

 

Heinkel He 162 A-2 Volksjäger in the Restoration Hangar of the Imperial War Museum Duxford—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Not long before the end of WW II, in Europe, Germany pushed through Project Salamander—from design to first flight occurred within an incredibly short 90 days. Made of wood and other non strategic materials, powered by a single BMW 003 nacelle mounted turbojet engine, armed with 2 x 20mm auto cannon and a 30 minute fuel supply the mission of the He 162 was obvious, and that was to shoot down bombers. Not produced in numbers to impact the outcome the war this fighter was nonetheless a successful design which was easily flown and possessing advanced features like drooped wingtips and an ejection seat.,

Heinkel He 162 A-2 Volksjäger in the Restoration Hangar of the Imperial War Museum Duxford—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The last Victor nuke bomber—IWM Duxford

6 February 2019

Handley Page built 50 of the Victor B.1 bombers (and about half that number as B.2 variants). Victor’s were the UK’s first strategic nuclear delivery bomber and it flew high as well as fast. Its shape is quite futuristic by today’s standards though seven decades have passed. As we know, heavy bombers subsequently had to change personas to  low-level penetrator aircraft as antiaircraft missiles as well as radar became preeminent. The Avro Vulcan with its delta wing was better suited to fast low-level flying than the Victor and with the shift to the Vulcan paired with submarine launched missiles the days of the Victor became numbered, save for those converted to aerial tanker duty.

This Victor is currently having its livery done up in low-level flying camo and is located within the restoration hangar of the Imperial War Museum Duxford. Two of the Victor’s most distinguishing features can easily be seen:

  • The intake for the engines buried within each wing root
  • The chin bulge which housed radar, node gear as well as the auxiliary bomb aiming position (when not using radar)

Handley Page Victor B.1A in the restoration hangar/Imperial War Museum Duxford (note the main landing gear standing on its own as well as a portion the chin bulge having been removed)—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Handley Page Victor B.1A in the restoration hangar/Imperial War Museum Duxford (note the air intake in the wing root for two massive turbojet engines buried within the wing)—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Handley Page Victor B.1A in the restoration hangar/Imperial War Museum Duxford (note: the auxiliary bomb aiming position in the extreme nose, á lá WW II vintage strategic bombers)—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

 

NNAM cockpits

4 February 2019

 

The Grumman F3F (clearly the predecessor to the F4F Wildcat) at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The F3F’s cockpit at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Note: the National Naval Aviation Museum has this link to the Grumman F3F virtual cockpit.

The Curtiss BFC-2 Goshawk (one of aviation’s early dive bombers) at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The BFC-2’s cockpit at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

Note: the National Naval Aviation Museum has this link to the Curtiss BFC-2 Goshawk virtual cockpit.

Pilot’s view forward along the part side of the BFC-2 at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The view from the right into the Hawker Siddeley AV-8A Harrier display cockpit at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The view from the left into the Hawker Siddeley AV-8A Harrier display cockpit at the National Naval Aviation Museum—Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

 

Crete 1941: The Battle and the Resistance

3 February 2019

Crete 1941: The Battle and the Resistance, Sir Antony Beevor, 1991, ISBN 978-0-14-312642-3, 405 pp.

Crete 1941: The Battle and the Resistance by Sir Antony Beevor

Sir Antony Beevor is not only a world-renowned professional historian, especially regarding World War II, he is an author with intuitive insight and understanding of strategy, tactics and—especially—the human dimension. This makes Beevor’s writings extraordinary as well as outstanding. His writing is as unbiased as humanly possible so readers are rewarded with comprehensive understanding with respect to valor, humility, suffering and hubris. This understanding pertains to combatants on all sides as well as civilians caught in between. Too often military historians omit the civilian dimension or euphemistically dismiss the “collateral damage”—incredibly though tens of thousands can be swept up into starvation and death. Total war study brings the responsibility of total understanding and Beevor does not waiver from this duty.

Crete 1941: The Battle and the Resistance is a brilliant example of this credo. Readers learn the thinking and decisions behind Allied as well as Axis decisions from general staff to the grunts accomplishing their missions, and often not as implacable fate dictated. He also addresses the specific culture of the people of Crete in their resilience, warmth, long memory and bravery in housing Allied soldiers left behind in the retreat.

Beevor aids in the understanding of the Luftwaffe’s planning for a large-scale airborne assault and how close the battle was initially. It was not the overwhelming and immediate defeat as is often related in cold statistics. It was also not a victory enjoyed by the Wermacht as civilians as well as abandoned soldiers ensured. Beevor has provided a gift with his writing of this terrific and costly battle as well as the months long resistance which ensued. This is a story of incredible sacrifice and perseverance due to the human dimension which develops in combat environments—told well by Sir Antony Beevor and his credo. Bravo!

LOACH!: The Story of the H-6/Model 500 Helicopter

3 February 2019

LOACH!: The Story of the H-6/Model 500 Helicopter, Wayne Mutza, 2005, ISBN 0-7643-2343-1, 144 pp.

LOACH! The Story of the H-6/Model 500 Helicopter by Wayne Mutza (front cover)

I recall my first experience of seeing a Cayuse fly. It was while watching a newscast during the Vietnam War and the particular story was in regard to communist forces new use of shoulder fired heat seeking missiles. Incredibly, a combat photojournalist had video following one of these then new missiles as it chased after a scout Cayuse. The Cayuse’s pilot flew the egg shaped nimble helicopter up, down and around natural obstacles (a ravine, a hillock and a tree) tightly and with skill born of training and inspiration—all the while receiving radio comm regarding the missile’s reaction to the pilot’s actions. Not that I trust my recollection’s accuracy, but I recall the Cayuse pivoting at the last second ( i.e., perfect timing) more than 90° to the left using a large tree as a pylon. The missile found the tree and the Cayuse went free to scout again—all in a day’s work.

The Cayuse has earned a loyal following being light and quick with the utility and reliability of a pickup truck. Weapons on pylons, soldiers on the benches mounted on the skids, an engine both hardy and powerful without a weight penalty—the Hughes OH-6 Cayuse is tremendously understated regarding its history and lore. The battle damage stories alone make the Cayuse stand out. As the Hughes Model 500 in its civilian persona it has been as successful. Would Magnum, P.I. have had the same panache without “T.C.” flying the “Island Hoppers” Hughes 500?

Since absorbed by McDonnell Douglas the Cayuse soldiers on as the MD 500 in civilian life and still as the OH-6 in military use.

LOACH!: The Story of the H-6/Model 500 Helicopter is the book which does justice to this design as novel as it is succesful. Design stories and combat stories (some near hard to believe) are all presented well. Images are spectacular and most uncommon. Unit patches are included in full color—Mutza has overlooked nothing in this thorough history of this amazing helicopter. It is hard to imagine an aviation history library without this title on the shelf.

LOACH! The Story of the H-6/Model 500 Helicopter by Wayne Mutza (rear cover)

B-52 Stratofortress—how the BUFF lived

2 February 2019

B-52 Stratofortress

B-52 Stratofortress: the Complete History of the World’s Longest Serving and Best Known Bomber by Bill Yenne (front cover)

This is the book which will be at the BUFF’s retirement roast—none other will be required. The history of the B-52’s service is complete and well illustrated. The image =s and drawing in  the book are second to no one. This book belongs on every aviation history book shelf and pairs well with, Boeing B-52 Stratofortress 1952 onwards (all marks): Owners’ Workshop Manual by Steve Davies

B-52 Stratofortress: the Complete History of the World’s Longest Serving and Best Known Bomber by Bill Yenne (rear cover)