Mini Pilot Reports

The A-10 Warthog Has No Warts

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

The A-10 isnít an airplane. Itís a terrifyingly effective ball peen hammer designed from the onset to do one job and one job only: support the guys on the ground. At the beginning that meant it was to blunt the tank attacks cold war planners knew the Russians would send rolling across Europe in waves. [...]

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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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Aerial Walkin’ With the Spacewalker

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

As I was reaching down to the sides of the little cockpit for the seat belts, I found myself asking what seemed to be a logical question: If you built a model airplane that is on a 1:1 scale, where do you draw the line between model and real airplanes? Certainly the Spacewalker begs that [...]

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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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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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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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Super Stearman: Bulging Biplane Biceps

Jan 30, 2007 No Comments

by Budd Davisson What do you get when you take any airplane and more than double the horsepower? For one thing you get much bigger grins every time you move the throttle forward for takeoff. The 450 Stearman, the so-called ìSuper Stearman,î is a classic case in point. Originally born with a puny 220 hp, [...]

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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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