Author Posts

Aviation Insider: A Pilot’s View of D-Day

May 23, 2014 No Comments

By Barrett Tillman In his memoir, Lt. Col. Richard E. Turner recalled D-Day for the Ninth Air Force’s 354th Fighter Group at Maidstone, Kent. He described the “Pioneer Mustangs’” rare D-Day missions: night escort of troop carrier aircraft and gliders.   Since the 25th of May, the group had been informed that it was on a [...]

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Milton Caniff & The Art of War

May 07, 2014 No Comments

By Rachel Morris Milton Caniff never served in the military, but, his spirit was on virtually every battlefield of WW II. His artwork on the nose of fighters and bombers and in thousands of military papers touched those in combat in ways nothing else could.     Born in 1907, Caniff moved from Ohio to [...]

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An Icon Aloft

May 07, 2014 No Comments

John Magoffin’s Lockheed Vega By Budd Davisson  Photos by Scotty Germain The year was 1928 and the concept of the airplane was changing radically. While barnstormers still landed rickety surplus biplanes in pastures to hop passengers, those days were waning fast. Utility was driving designs to be faster and sleeker. But, when the Lockheed Vega [...]

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Sun ‘n Fun International Fly-In & Expo

Apr 11, 2014 No Comments

After a few years of weather challenging even the most ardent pilots, the volunteers and attendees for this year’s Sun ‘n Fun International Fly-In & Expo in Florida were treated to perfectly sunny skies and reasonable temps. By mid-week it was clear that attendee and airplane numbers were up significantly, and a weekend appearance by [...]

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Iconic Firepower: The 40mm Borfors

Mar 31, 2014 No Comments

By Barrett Tillman How often have we seen the film clips? A U.S. Navy task group steaming beneath the Pacific sun as Japanese aircraft race through a flak-speckled sky intent on immolating themselves against the gray steel vessels. All the while, twin and quad-mount cannon churn out a wall of 40mm shells to deflect or [...]

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Aviation Insider: F-35 Lightning II

Mar 31, 2014 No Comments

Is it striking out? By Robert F. Dorr When the 100th F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter was delivered on December 13, it was a “big deal for the Air Force,” said chief of staff Gen. Mark Welsh. Welsh is the most visible face and the strongest voice supporting the F-35. A respected fighter pilot, [...]

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Classics: The Curtis C-46 Commando

Mar 31, 2014 No Comments

The “Gooney Bird” wasn’t alone By Steve Pace The Classic C-46 Commando was originally marketed by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation as a pressurized 20-passenger “sub-stratosphere transport” for the masses but earned its stripes doing heavy lifting in WW II. Curtiss-Wright Corporation designed and built its proposed CW-20T twin-engine passenger airliner as an advanced higher-flying, larger-capacity alternative [...]

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Pre-war Beauty: Hawker Demon

Mar 05, 2014 No Comments

By Luigino Caliaro The Hawker Demon was a two-seat fighter developed from the highly appreciated Hawker Hart light bomber. The Demon, which first flew in February 1933, was very similar to the Hart externally, but was powered by the supercharged Kestrel IIS V12 (precursor of the mighty Merlin), which gave it better performance at high [...]

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