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The A-10 Has No Warts

The A-10 Has No Warts

The A-10 isn’t an airplane. It’s 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. […]
Stearman PT-17/N2S: The Biplane With So Many Lives

Stearman PT-17/N2S: The Biplane With So Many Lives

The PT-17 Stearman is literally the airplane that has always seemed to just be “there.” Although, it is most often thought of as the school marm that taught a generation of airmen the skills necessary to win a war, she has actually lived three distinct lives and is entering a fourth, from military trainer to […]

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Rare WW II film: Luftwaffe Aircraft and Ground Crew

Rare WW II film: Luftwaffe Aircraft and Ground Crew

Here’s something you don’t see every day. A taste of the WW II front lines from the Luftwaffe’s point of view. This rare WW II German film (with audio), showis Luftwaffe Stukas, Ju 88 s, Bf 109 s, Bf 110 s in aerial action. Also included German ground crew fueling Stuka dive bombers, as well […]
Belgian Rattlesnake  – The Lewis Machine gun

Belgian Rattlesnake – The Lewis Machine gun

Today the name of Isaac Newton Lewis is little known outside of firearms circles, but he exerted a major influence on aerial combat. In 1911, Colonel Lewis, a U.S. Army ordnance officer, adapted a machine gun design patented by inventor Samuel McLean. With a soldier’s eye toward utility, Lewis worked with the Automatic Arms Co. in New York to simplify the original design as a workable weapon. Light and potent, it was a revolutionary design.

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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 […]
How the USAF Almost Brought Back the P-51 Mustang

How the USAF Almost Brought Back the P-51 Mustang

Today’s pilots are expensively trained and politically expensive to lose. A pilot lost over Serbia or Syria has major diplomatic repercussions, which is why drones are becoming the aircraft of choice. The Air Force does like its high-priced jets, and cost is a lingering issue for hundred-million-dollar aircraft like the F-35. But while a propeller-driven […]

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Nocturnal Hunter — the first Corsair equipped with radar

Nocturnal Hunter — the first Corsair equipped with radar

Hunched in the cockpit of an F4U-2 Corsair in the darkest, blackest night he could remember, Second Lieutenant Frank Lang peered at the 6-inch scope in the center of his instrument panel and saw nothing significant to break up the green-yellow line inscribing a circle around the dial.
“Shoo Shoo Shoo Baby” B-17 Flying Fortress

“Shoo Shoo Shoo Baby” B-17 Flying Fortress

“Shoo Shoo Baby” is a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress that was preserved and on public display. A B-17G-35-BO, (SN 42-32076), it was named by her crew for a song of the same name sung by The Andrews Sisters, a favorite of crew chief T/Sgt. Hank Cordes. Photographs of the bomber indicate that a third “Shoo” […]

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On this Day: December 19 – Last Manned Mission to the Moon Splashes Down

On this Day: December 19 – Last Manned Mission to the Moon Splashes Down

45 years ago today! It was twelve days after launching from Kennedy Space Center, the 3-man crew of Apollo 17 splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on December 19, 1972. The last of six missions that successfully put men on the moon, the program fell victim to budget cuts and shrinking interest from the public. […]
On this Day in Aviation History — Japan Fighters Intercept Chinese Plane

On this Day in Aviation History — Japan Fighters Intercept Chinese Plane

Japan scrambled fighter jets after a Chinese plane was seen Thursday near small islands in the East China Sea that are claimed by both countries. This is the first time that the dispute over the islands — which Japan calls Senkaku and China refers to as Diaoyu — has involved aircraft, introducing a new sphere of […]
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