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Fork-Tailed Oddballs

Fork-Tailed Oddballs

There’s the P-38 Lightning known and loved by generations — a large, yet lithe twin-engine, twin-boom fighter with an informed sense of streamlining that inspired descriptions like “three bullets on a knife.” The P-38 marched through the war generating alphabetical models through “M” totaling around 10,000 copies. But it would be facile to leave the […]
Lightning: The Fork-tailed Devil Revealed

Lightning: The Fork-tailed Devil Revealed

Is there a more identifiable outline in all of fighterdom, WW I to today, than the Lockheed P-38 Lightning? We don’t think so. No other airframe has emblazoned such a clear image in history’s hall of fame. So, what can be said about it that hasn’t already been said? The answer is “nothing.” The facts […]

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Nightvision

Nightvision

The art of the nocturnal photographer As a longtime volunteer photographer for the Experimental Aircraft Association at their annual orgy-of-all-things-aerial in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, Phil High will regularly be seen lying on the ground, getting dramatic angles of an airplane. Or homing-in on the details that make that particular airplane different. His photos are often featured […]
Hey, That’s My Dad!

Hey, That’s My Dad!

A son finds his father in a fading wartime image By Frederick A. Johnsen Part of the enjoyment of viewing WW II photographs is seeing the never-ending panorama of men and women at work during the war. Young and cocky fighter pilots, winsome women serving donuts or riveting bombers, and mechanics lounging for a moment […]

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Gallery: de Havilland  DH84 Dragon

Gallery: de Havilland DH84 Dragon

The Bi-winged Birth of European Air Travel Words and photos by Geoff Jones Many British and Commonwealth air routes were established by airlines using de Havilland’s 6-passenger seat, twin-engine biplane, the DH84 Dragon. The Dragon’s first flight (November 1932) pre-dated the better-known DH89 Dragon Rapide (or Dominie in military service) by two years, although both […]
Iconic Firepower: Aircrew Sidearms

Iconic Firepower: Aircrew Sidearms

The last ditch defense By Barrett Tillman Murvaux, France, September 29, 1918. The mortally wounded American ace slid from his SPAD and staggered into the tall grass. As German infantry approached he drew his Colt M1911 pistol and prepared to die fighting. The Arizonan fired at least three rounds in the dusk encounter before he […]

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Bad Kitty

Bad Kitty

VF-19 “Satan’s Kittens” Chew Up the Enemy “I had well over 1,000 hours of time in the air before I entered combat. Most of that was as an instrument instructor flying the SNJ. Instrument flying really teaches you the finer points of flying an airplane. It also makes you focus and for some reason I […]
Never Stay Still

Never Stay Still

The Battle of Britain’s Youngest Warrior By Rachel Morris As Hitler’s tanks roll into Poland on September 1, 1939, Europe’s worst fears are confirmed: war becomes inevitable. A thousand miles away, a young man celebrates his first solo flight in a de Havilland Tiger Moth, heading to a quiet English country pub with friends to […]

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Caudron C.460 Ancient Speed Demon Reborn

Caudron C.460 Ancient Speed Demon Reborn

Speed has always been a drug, of sorts. It has captivated mankind for as long as he has stood on two legs and nowhere has the urge to see who is the fastest been stronger than in aviation. And at no time has that competition been more fierce than during the 1930s, the uncontested golden […]
Ace in a Day

Ace in a Day

The kills and claims of the top shooters On the morning of April 7, 1943, American fighter pilots on Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands responded to a red alert. More than 100 Japanese aircraft were inbound, sending Wildcats and P-40s scrambling to intercept. In a prolonged combat, the defenders claimed 39 victories and actually got […]
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