Author Posts

Cessna 180 Skywagon

Jan 30, 2007 1 Comment

Aviation’s Pick-up Truck by Budd Davisson Personally, Iíve always been a sucker for blue-collar airplanesó those birds that work for a living and always look as if they have grease under their fingernails. And that pretty well describes the Cessna 180 . In 1952, when Cessna decided they needed to pump some testostrone into their 145 [...]

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P-51 Mustang: John Landers and “Big Beautiful Doll”

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson One thing we often forget is that war is always fought by kids and, in the case of WWII aviators, that meant they were also extremely inexperienced. When I flew my first fighter, which happened to be the Mustang, I was 29 years old and had nearly 2,500 hours of flight time [...]

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The World’s Fastest Pony Kegs: GeeBee R-1 and R-2

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson When Granville engineer, Pete Miller, drafted the first lines for the ìRî series of Super Sportsters, there was no way he could have known that he was designing a legend. And an airplane that would have people shaking their heads for the next 70 years. In fact, since the last Gee Bee [...]

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The Beechcraft T-34: Better, not Older

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson Hereís an interesting question: of all the airplanes still being flown regularly by the U.S. Armed forces, which is the oldest? There are still a few Phantoms out there. They arrived on the scene around 1959. Of course the old ìBuffî, the B-52 first spread its mighty wings an unbelievable 52 years [...]

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Edge 540: Man Carrying RC Ship

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson If you ever want to know exactly how the little plastic pilot in an R/C pattern ship feels, go strap on an Edge 540. In truth, no 1:1 scale airplanes give the three-dimensional freedom a pattern ship has because of the power-to-weight ratio, but the Edge comes terribly close. The Bill and [...]

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P-38 Lightning: A country boy way out of his element

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson When I flew a P-38 for the first time, I have to admit that I had a hard time hearing the engines over the noise of my knees knocking. What was a grassroots pilot like me doing strapped into such a huge piece of iron? That was simple: I wanted a type-rating [...]

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Fokker Dr.1 Triplane: Flying The Red Baron’s Beast

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson When youíre strapping into a Fokker Triplane the difference between it and most other airplanes is palpable. The instrument panel doesnít exist and the few rudimentary gauges are snuggled between the butts of two dummy Spandaus that seem to be almost in your face. When you look outside, that middle wing sits [...]

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Martin B-26 Maurauder

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

The Widow Maker Made Good by Budd Davisson Letís say itís 1943. Youíre twenty years old and you are sitting at the end of the runway with your hand wrapped around two throttles that control four-thousand horsepower. You know that fighters like the new P-51 Mustang carry 35 pounds for each square foot of wing [...]

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