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Iconic Firepower: Bomber Turret Developments

Iconic Firepower: Bomber Turret Developments

By Frederick A. Johnsen Once airplanes became viable weapons, they became tempting targets. Bombers, often single-engine biplanes with an observation capability during World War I, were targeted, prompting defensive armament intended purely for destroying attacking aircraft. The Scarff ring, a Royal Flying Corps contribution to bomber longevity during the Great War, was a mechanical mount […]
Aviation Insider: Technology vs. Basic Flying Skill

Aviation Insider: Technology vs. Basic Flying Skill

By Anonymous Is automation killing people? That’s the question that keeps on giving. But what’s the answer? As with everything else, there are plenty of opinions. For the sake of clarity, let’s group them into three categories. The first opinion, typically held by older, more experienced, aviation types is the belief that today’s aviation is […]

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Free Online Drawing of Original Ace-Maker

Free Online Drawing of Original Ace-Maker

The first verifiable instance of a pilot downing five opponents unaided in one day was Leutnant Fritz Otto Bernert. It was April, 1917 and he was flying an Albatros. Click below to download an amazing three view drawing of the Albatros as only William Wylam could do them. This should go on your den wall! Download it […]
Rare Bird: Pitcairn Autogiro

Rare Bird: Pitcairn Autogiro

By Gilles Auliard “This is a real prehistoric monster in flight. Once the helicopter was built, these autogiros became dinosaurs,” stated the late Jack Tiffany of Spring Valley, Ohio, at the time, co-owner (with Jim Hammond of Yellow Springs, Ohio) of the Pitcairn PA-18 N1267B (c/n G-65), the only example of the type flying in […]

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Fixin’ the Boat: Of Splinters and Tail Hooks

Fixin’ the Boat: Of Splinters and Tail Hooks

By Warren Thompson The reason why the earlier U.S. aircraft carriers had flight decks covered with wood as opposed to steel has been a mystery to many. Most will tell you that all of the decks were with teakwood. This may have been the preferred material, but beginning in 1941, most of the world’s teakwood […]
T-Tailed Tri-Jet: The Martin XB-51

T-Tailed Tri-Jet: The Martin XB-51

By Steve Pace The XB-51 was a one-of-a-kind movie star that starred in the 1956 movie entitled Toward the Unknown as the Gilbert XF-120, which would have made it the world’s biggest fighter! What began life as a four-engine turbopropjet (two) and turbojet (two)-powered attack aircraft designated XA-45, evolved into a three-engine, turbojet-powered, medium-class bombardment […]

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The Game Changers: Little Boy & Fat Man

The Game Changers: Little Boy & Fat Man

By Barrett Tillman Adhering to our October 2013 issue’s (on sale July 30) B-29 emphasis, it’s fitting to devote the Firepower segment to the atomic bombs that Superfortresses dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Development of nuclear weapons began in early 1943, following years of scientific and engineering research. The Manhattan Project managers identified two methods […]
Free: Original Drawing of Sikorsky “Le Grand”

Free: Original Drawing of Sikorsky “Le Grand”

When 23 year-old Igor Sikorsky proposed building the world’s biggest airplane and the first four-engine airplane, he was laughed at. However, in 1913, he proved his detractors all wrong, and had taken his first step toward becoming an aviation icon. The drawing we are offering is directly from the Sikorsky Archives and was initialed by […]

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From the Same Zero?

Mr. Pilkington’s letter in the June issue reminded me that a souvenir I have may be from that same Zero (“Classics,” February 2013). My brother, Lt. (jg.) John R. Shinneman of VF-10 made a courier flight to Aslito Field on 26 June 44 from Enterprise (CV-6) and brought back a Zero throttle handle (shown below […]

Getting a Name Correct

Another fantastic issue, congrats to you and the staff! Found the following to bring to your attention, the photo caption on page 49 is incorrect in that the man on the left is David Hanson, Collections Manager, USS Midway Museum here in San Diego. By now you must have more than a few comments on […]
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