For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . .

Posted by: Amie

For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 12:19 PM

Or, "How We Spent Our Saturday"

Southwestern Ontario is home to a collection of nine World War II planes called Harvards. They were built as training planes, to teach pilots how to fly and maneuver in sticky situations. Over 140,000 men were trained to fly on these planes, from North America but also from France and Poland.

Keeping the planes in flying shape takes a lot of patience and a lot of money. From time to time they offer 'backseat' rides as a way of keeping awareness up and the coffers, too! So yesterday Ian got his chance to take a backseat ride in a Harvard himself.

As luck would have it, his pilot, David Sheppard, got called into Formation duty for a private airshow that was taking place today. So Ian got the special thrill of flying in a formation training circuit instead of just a sightseeing ride. I know Rick will appreciate this - afterwards, Ian said "As a pilot I spend all my time trying to avoid other aircraft. Having to fly this close to other planes was a real shocker!"

Anyway, just thought a few of you would like to see a little (very poor quality cell phone video) of his flight yesterday. The unusual noise that the Harvards make is from the props, not the engines, incidentally. The props rotate so fast they are supersonic.



You can read more about the Harvards here: http://www.harvards.com/
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 12:49 PM

That is too cool! I am very envious. One of my bucket list items is to take a ride in a WWII-era plane.

Thank you for sharing, Amie!
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 01:10 PM

That is really cool Amie! I hope Ian got a chance at a little stick time also? Up until several years ago the same engine used in the Harvard and Texan (Pratt & Whitney R1340) was the same engine used in most spray planes and I have accumulated a little over 3k hours with that engine, great engine but a little too old and fragile for rugged use anymore but I always love to hear the sound of them. Ask Ian if the sound from inside the cockpit reminded him of a locomotive initially, that's usually most folks first impression of a radial engine.
Posted by: fredk

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 03:22 PM

Very cool Amie! I don't do well in small planes, but I would love to take a ride in a WWII figher (or trainer).
Posted by: Gary Vose Sr

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 03:28 PM

Thanks Amie, nice to see you and Ian can manage some time away from Corporate Headquarters.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/27/12 04:04 PM

Excellent story.

Thank gawd that our Air Force had retired the Harvard just before I joined the RCAF as a noob pilot in 1966 or I'd still be flippin burgers somewhere, ha!!

The Harvard is a real handful for novice pilots due to it being a tail-dragger coupled with the strong torque properties of a big radial engine swinging a good sized propeller. They often ended up off the runway in the grass after suffering the infamous 'ground loop'.

I was fortunate as an 18 year old just-out-of high school dweeb to go directly from the street to our CT-114 Tutor Primary Trainer that is still being flown by our Snowbirds Aerobatic Team today. Thankfully it is a very civilized & forgiving aircraft in every way - & a lot of fun as well. Even so, the majority of pilot candidates failed to achieve their wings due to the speed & complexity of starting out from scratch on a jet. Because of the high failure rate, that program lasted for only a couple of years when they introduced the prop-driven Chipmunk (sort of a much smaller Harvard) as the Primary Trainer before candidates carried on to the jet.

I envy Ian for getting that chance...

TAM
Posted by: Murph

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 08:24 AM

Looks like fun Amie. I'd love to fly in a vintage plane. I'm not a pilot but have been in quiet a few different types of aircraft as a passenger.

I once flew in a WW I plane! Well OK, actually it was a Cessna. Sounds boring, but actually, it might have been one of the the dumbest thing I ever did as it did have a very distinct WW I feature.

We discovered that the pilot's nickname was "The Spinnmiester" but it was not because of his aeronautical shenanigans as we suspected, but because the starter was gone on the plane and he had to jump start it by spinning the blade by hand. I had no idea you could actually even do that on a modern place.

In hind sight, we probably should not have flown in it but since we were going skydiving, we figured as long as he could at least get to 1000 feet before stalling, we would be OK since we had parachutes.

FYI, it also had a broken tach and the fuel was leaking out of the drain hole "or something" on one wing. He tried to stop it by tightening the fuel cap on the top of the wing, then he had us push the plane over to park it on a hill so that wing was elevated.

Not sure if these guys are still operating a skydiving school. I certainly hope not. Although the crazy instructor from New Zealand who let one of us pack his chute was a fun guy and he bought a round at the bar that night because he said we deserved it for not backing out of the jump.
Posted by: Ian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 09:01 AM

It was very cool. I would highly recommend it for anyone who is into flying. I had to decide between going in the formation run or being able to fly my own sightseeing trip from the back seat. Tough call; I end up deciding that I can always go back for the actual chance to fly the Harvard but they donít do the formation practices all the time.

It is pretty barebones in these planes. There is no floor, just two rails where you put your feet. The instrumentation was surprisingly complete for a 1937 aircraft. No VOR/DME but other than that it had the basic IFR package we could get by with today.

I hadnít thought of a locomotive at the time but that is a pretty good description for it. These planes have a huge engine for the size of the plane and it is all about torque. The top speed is only 157 knots, which may have been considered fast then, but lots of power for aerobatics which they are capable of.
Posted by: Amie

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 09:12 AM

These are great stories guys - thanks for sharing them! Amazing!
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 10:20 AM

That's awesome Ian!

For those that know about these things: Is this plane related to the P47? That's what this looked like to me.....
Posted by: Ian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 11:32 AM

I believe the P47 is the fixed gear version of the Harvard.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 11:38 AM

No floor?
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 11:48 AM

Ahhh, so I still have an eye for these things! smile

Thanks, Ian!
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 11:49 AM

Wouldn't stop most of the AA flak anyway, so why add the weight? grin
Posted by: Adrian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 12:22 PM

Also helps if you need to take a .....
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 12:30 PM

Cool stuff. Incidentally, I was told by a fantastic docent at the Air and Space Museum in Dulles that the Huey's unique sound is also because the ends of the blades go supersonic.
Posted by: SBrown

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 01:30 PM

Originally Posted By: Lampshade
No floor?



That's so you can get up to speed on the runway.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 01:41 PM

Yabba Dabba Doo!
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 02:48 PM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
That's awesome Ian!

For those that know about these things: Is this plane related to the P47? That's what this looked like to me.....


Originally Posted By: Ian
I believe the P47 is the fixed gear version of the Harvard.


Are you guys referring to the P47 Thunderbolt? If so, it is no relation whatsoever to the Harvard. The Harvard is a variant of the T-6 Texan and I believe the aircraft Ian is maybe thinking about is the predecessor to the Texan/Harvard, either the BT-19 or BT-15?

The P47 Thunderbolt is powered by a Pratt & Whitney R2800, 2,500HP radial engine and has speed around 400+ mph, the P47 was used primarily as a successful ground attack aircraft in Europe.

With WWII aircraft any aircraft with a 'T' designation was a trainer (T-6, BT-19 and etc..) 'P' designated Pursuit (P47, P51 and etc..) which was later changed to 'F' for fighter.

BT19...


BT15...


And P47...

Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 03:05 PM

Originally Posted By: Ken.C
Cool stuff. Incidentally, I was told by a fantastic docent at the Air and Space Museum in Dulles that the Huey's unique sound is also because the ends of the blades go supersonic.


I don't believe that's entirely true Ken, although aircraft and helicopter propellers can go supersonic they aren't designed do so and become very inefficient at supersonic speeds. We'll have to ask Tom (exlabdriver) but it is my understanding that the advancing blade (the upwind blade of a forward moving helicopter) is limited in speed so that it will not go supersonic.

I believe the unique sound from the Huey is due to the width and length of the blades rather than them going supersonic.

Ken, here is a simple explanation...

'Because the blade is rotating, and not flying straight into the air, then the outer tip will be moving through the air faster than the base. In fact, the airspeed of the blade will increase as you move out. So what will happen is that the tips of the blades will be the first to reach mach 1. A shock wave will form at the tip of the blade. As the blade increases rotational speed, the shockwave will move along the blade as more of the blade goes supersonic.

The big problem with this is that the blades really aren't designed to withstand the stresses of supersonic travel. They will end up disintegrating. It also means that a portion of the blade will be 'transonic' (at or near the speed of sound). In this region there are problems with airflow and controllability, which will severely hamper the performance of the blade. Loss of lift and poor control will be major symptoms. Noise is the other issue.'





Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:05 PM

eek
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:11 PM

So, if not Super Sonic, might it have been moving "Ahead.....Warp Speed"?
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:22 PM

On the Canadian Harvard Aircraft Association website it says "The 9 foot propeller is powered by a massive radial engine causing the propeller tips to go supersonic causing an unforgettable roar."

CHAA

The third entry in the second section states how propellers go supersonic - Aerospaceweb.org
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:34 PM

I believe those fellas on the Harvard site are stretching it a little bit, that 'massive' engine is a 600 hp 9 cylinder radial engine used in trainers, a 'massive' engine would be something like an 18 cylinder radial engine producing 2,500 hp or even the 28 cylinder R4360 used in bombers and transports. I have a lot of time with the same engine they are calling 'massive' and 'massive' is far from what most in our industry would call an R1340.

The current turbine engines I fly now and have thousands of hours behind are turning 39,000 rpm and have a gear reduction transmission that turns the propller a maximum of 2,200 rpm so that it won't go faster than transonic for the reasons I stated above.
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:40 PM

I have NO idea, Rick. I just enjoy searching and learning smile.
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 04:48 PM

Cam see if you can find some FAA sites and the mechanics of aircraft propulsion, it can get complicated due to the fine window of keeping propeller driven aircraft within the limits of transonic speeds. The only reason we have never seen a propeller driven plane go supersonic is because of the limitations of the propeller, not the plane or engine!

Mark is right, we all need a Warp-Speed button! laugh
Posted by: Ian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 05:05 PM

Hi Rick,

I did a little digging and the fixed wing version I was thinking of was called the NA-64. Would like to figure out how to get a chance to fly a P47 though.
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 05:22 PM

Man wouldn't we all love to get some P47 time! You know if you ever make it down our way I can get you hooked up in a two seat side by side turbine ag plane flight in an Air Tractor 504 (http://www.airtractor.com/aircraft/504), I think you'll really enjoy it!

When will we be expecting you? grin
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/28/12 05:34 PM

Originally Posted By: RickF
Cam see if you can find some FAA sites and the mechanics of aircraft propulsion, it can get complicated due to the fine window of keeping propeller driven aircraft within the limits of transonic speeds. The only reason we have never seen a propeller driven plane go supersonic is because of the limitations of the propeller, not the plane or engine!

Mark is right, we all need a Warp-Speed button! laugh


I couldn't find anything published by the FAA, but I found this interesting article from the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. It mentions the P-47 among others - link.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 12:58 AM

I've never pretended to understand the aerodynamic properties of rotor craft - it's all magic to me. Our training program included old movies of helo blades taken from the rotor hub out along the length of the blade. After watching the gyrations of a blade while it rotates in flight makes me wonder why I ever continued flying them! There must be some of those types of videos on YouTube & are worth a view.

Rotor blades are subject to enough torture as it is, without subjecting them to supersonic speeds at the blade tips, although they do come close. In those days, blades were made of metal & subject to fatigue due to constant flexing, corrosion & eventual failure if not changed out after so many hours. In fact our unit lost a CH113A Voyageur & crew during a night training trip on base due to a metal blade failure causing catastrophic disintegration of the helo at 500 feet. I had flown that particular machine in the morning & afternoon flights & it came apart that evening - not my time I guess. Today, blades are all composite materials & are much stronger & safer.

The Huey's characteristic sound was from 2 quite wide (chordwise) blades that really compressed the air when coming head on. I heard a 3-ship approaching one day on a cold prairie winter morning at about -35C - the sound was absolutely surreal - reminding me of the 'Apocalypse Now' soundtrack but at extreme levels. It was really quite amazing & I don't think that most HTs could adequately reproduce that awesome sound in all its glory (unless there were a couple of EP800s involved, ha!)...

TAM
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 02:39 AM

I found this slow motion video of a helicopter blade. You weren't kidding!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ug6W7_tafnc
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 03:08 AM

Ah yes, I remember that one well.

There are several more good ones but it might take some searching...

TAM
Posted by: Ajax

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 07:47 AM

I absolutely adore the sound of the Huey. Speaking as a Vietnam vet, nearly every time I heard that sound, the chopper, and the brave men flying it, were coming either to protect my sorry butt, or to lift it out of the field and take it to a safer place.

In simpler, more direct, terms, the sound of a Huey usually meant good news. Plus, flying in them, with both doors wide open, was a hoot.

To this day, more than 40 years later, when I hear a Huey, I smile.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 08:13 AM

Saw/heard a Lancaster bomber out of Hamilton airport years ago during the Toronto airshow. That thing was LOUD!
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 08:51 AM

Heh. Well, that's what I told the docent my guess was, but he was pretty definite about the supersonic thing. Ah well. It was a fantastic tour anyway.
Posted by: fredk

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/29/12 09:18 PM

Originally Posted By: Ajax
To this day, more than 40 years later, when I hear a Huey, I smile.

It certainly is a unique sound. I've been in one twice heli skiing. Those things are powerful! It's quite a thrill the first time you lift off in one.
Posted by: BrenR

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 01:32 AM

Just watching the news tonight and a pilot buddy of mine just flew a PT-27 Stearman into Brandon, MB for the air museum from Tyendinaga Mohawk Airfield (CPU6), ON. Very cool.

Bren R.


Posted by: Ajax

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 08:10 AM

My nephews is a pilot for US Air. But that's not the only flying he does.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FDmXt6_Zzs

He also flies a 1941 Waco UPF-7 and a 1943 Stinson V-77 "Reliant" owned by his father-in-law






Posted by: pmbuko

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 09:38 AM

There's something really sexy about those old biplanes. I
Posted by: chesseroo

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 11:38 AM

My father had his private pilot's license and we flew alot when i was growing up. He was big into the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) and he built his own KR2 plane (took 14 years in the various garages and basements over time).

--just a stock internet photo, don't have any of his old photos scanned---

http://www.fly-kr.com/
http://krbuilder.org/




I remember going to Wisconsin for the big annual EAA show.
Yes i've seen and remember those Harvards.
We flew down in the family Piper Cherokee (stock photo).



But over the years he had many friends in Ontario that belonged to EAA and had their own planes.
One fellow owned an aerobatic Pitts Special. Now that was a fun ride!!


Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 01:08 PM

Wow, it's great to see so many aviation buffs around here ... those are some nice rides. Jack a friend of mine has a UPF-7 identical to the one you have pictured, his Waco and another friend's Stearman are the only old school biplanes I've flown but I have a couple of hundred hours flying the Gruman G164 Ag-Cat. Several years ago I did some work around the Homestead, Fl area and had a chance to meet Curtis Pitts and saw a sevral of his airplanes at his airstrip there in Homestead, he was really a neat guy.

Here's what I took my biennial flight review in last week, this belongs to a pilot who works next door to our service, it's an Extra 300...


Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 02:43 PM

Since we are looking at aircraft pics, I dug up a few of 'Yours Truly' at work back around 2000 before I retired in 2002. There are no supersonic blade tips here, ha!

The ramp pic shows part of 442 Sqn's (at Comox, BC) fleet of Buffalo fixed wing aircraft & Labradors at that time. The Buffs are still flying today but the Labs are long retired just like me!

The cruise ship 'Norwegian Sky' was off the north end of Vancouver Island enroute from Seattle to Alaska. We medevaced a very ill lady (from New York) to a land hospital where she recovered OK. It was a routine operation in good conditions with no particular drama, except for the large 'audience' onbard.

The smaller craft is a hoisting training mission with one of CFB Comox's Crash Boats.

TAM










Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 05:35 PM

Just want to say how much I enjoy and appreciate these stories and pictures. Thank you, gentlemen.

And I've got some free tickets to the Museum of Flight in Seattle. Stop by some time.
Posted by: Ajax

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 06:05 PM

Rrck, that is one cool looking plane in which you took your flight review.

My nephew, the pilot, is also building an airplane. It is a hummelbird. This is a photo of one (not his). Looks pretty fragile and flimsy to me.


Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/30/12 06:57 PM

While we're at it...

Here's my work plane, it's an Air Tractor AT-502. That's an Experimental RV-10 in the background, super nice and fast four place airplane with an all glass instrument panel.



With Robert, the ground supervisor who keeps our planes on the move and the little guy in the background is a Piper J-5 Cub...



Those are great pics everybody and really awesome pics Tom! Our son is in the U.S. Coast Guard training to be a crew member on the HH-65 Dolphin helicopter.
Posted by: Ian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 08:02 AM


I havenít checked in with this thread for a few days. These are some great pictures and great stories. I think I am starting to see how life works for Rick; he gets up, goes to the airport, and then flies around all day in a very cool plane. After this he goes home and listens to his audio system. I donít really see any flaw in that program. That AT-502 is huge; looks pretty much like all engine and cargo. Hopefully I do get a chance to get to Florida and go for a spin in it.

I got my introduction to private aviation from my friendís dad back when we were in High School. He had a float plane. It was one of those things that from the first flight I knew I had to do this.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 08:16 AM

Originally Posted By: Ian
I think I am starting to see how life works for Rick; he gets up, goes to the airport, and then flies around all day in a very cool plane. After this he goes home and listens to his audio system. I donít really see any flaw in that program.

Ian, you forgot to mention location... Sunny Florida.

Yeah, now that you mention it, I'm jealous of Rick's life too! smile
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 09:07 AM

Ian I sure wish it were as simple as that!

And Mark, go ahead and be envious ... it's 90 degrees with 70% humidity and June 1st (which BTW is the official kickoff to the hurricane season) isn't even here yet.

Just how jealous were you again? grin
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 09:09 AM

OK. Point Taken.

I'm SEASONALLY jealous of you! wink
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 09:12 AM

As I am of you! smile
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 09:29 AM


Posted by: 2x6spds

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 12:19 PM

Down here in Orange County, Southern California, we have the Lyons air museum at John Wayne Airport. I have had the pleasure of seeing the resident P-38 in flight, lumbering B-17s and B-24s, and for audiophiles out there, the incredible sound of a Merlin driven P-51 at full milpower take off.

I haven't been out to Chino for more than 10 years, but I got my first up-close look at an ME-262, a drive-by of a Lockheed SR-71 sitting out on an apron by the road, and we miss the Santa Monica air museum and its gorgeous Spitfire.

Warbirds, beautiful, deadly air weapons, glorious when mobilized in the service of the protection of freedom.
Posted by: 2x6spds

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 01:16 PM

BTW, today is the 100th anniversary of Marine Corps Aviation.

Semper Fi !!


Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 05/31/12 07:08 PM

A whole century of aviation - what a great milestone.

Congrats to the Marine Corps Aviators and all those who support their vital mission...

TAM
Posted by: INANE

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 06/01/12 01:02 AM

What a great thread. WWII era aviation was the best. My dad is a huge history buff. He's especially interested in all things WWII so a lot of that has rubbed off on me. Few years ago he got to take a ride in a B-17. He filmed a video of the flight from the airplane while my mom took some additional video from the ground. I'll have to ask him if he minds me posting it. This is the website of the B-17 he flew in: www.libertyfoundation.org
Posted by: Adrian

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 06/01/12 09:46 AM

Linda's father was a radio gunner with the RCAF in WWII...at the age of 17! I'm going to try to find out what plane(s) he flew in, I would hazard a guess it was either a Wellington or Lancaster. Unfortunately he passed away a couple of months ago.
Posted by: RickF

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 06/04/12 07:31 PM

I just learned today that a fire bomber (Tanker 11) from Neptune Aviation based in Misoula, Montana crashed while fighting a fire on the Utah/Nevada state lines, killing both pilots. I only bring this up because back whenever I was fighting fires I flew alongside Tankers 10, 11 and 12 from Neptune Aviation on the Big Cypress Fire in the Big Cypress National Preserve, Florida during the 2001-2002 fire season and crossed paths with them several times during my fire fighting days out west. These were some of the most professional folks I've ever been around and just a great bunch of guys to hang and work with.

Condolences and hoping for no more accidents this busy season.


Posted by: Murph

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 06/05/12 08:03 AM

Sad news.
They were as much heroes as they were pilots.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/20/13 06:36 PM

Resurrected thread.

A pilot friend sent me this link on forest fire fighting using our wonderful Canadair Water Bomber in Spain. This spectacular machine is in use worldwide where it does a fabulous job in this role.

Rough flying with lots of yankin & bankin in this video with no autopilot use in sight - music is great as well:

http://player.vimeo.com/video/48642618

TAM
Posted by: fredk

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/20/13 09:44 PM

Awesome video TAM!
Posted by: Amie

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/21/13 07:25 PM

No autopilot indeed! It must take a lot of training to deal with the shifting weight of all that water - is it a lot more difficult than regular flying?
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/22/13 01:25 PM

Fire fighting is indeed an extremely hazardous vocation, especially in the mountains.

The flying is all at low altitude in nasty turbulence (often caused by the fire itself) in poor visibility in smoke. Those factors combined with picking up water over glassy water (no depth perception) & operating in constricted areas in mountainous terrain makes it very challenging requiring outstanding manual piloting skills. Furthermore, rapidly dropping tons of water dramatically upsets the aircraft's flying characteristics that must be immediately corrected.

The Canadair machine is purpose built for this role & it therefore very manoeuverable. The most amazing aircraft to watch are the large ones that have been retired from their normal role & modified for the job - Martin Mars, P3s, Hercules, DC6s, DC10s, B747s, etc. They are not known for their agility & require a amazing skills to safely do their job. Locally here in BC, ConAir in Abbotsford has been modifying & flying these type of machines for decades. I have a couple of ex-military friends who fly for them as they didn't want to do the often boring airline type of job. I really admire these crews.

All you wanted to know about these machines:

http://www.conair.ca/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerial_firefighting

TAM
Posted by: cb919

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/23/13 06:42 PM

Wow, the photo gallery on the Conair site is great. Thanks for sharing that link.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/23/13 10:41 PM

Originally Posted By: cb919
Wow, the photo gallery on the Conair site is great. Thanks for sharing that link.

I can't find John Malkovich anywhere.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/23/13 10:48 PM

That's 'cause he got smashed with a piledriver, baby!
Posted by: Amie

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/24/13 04:41 AM

Quote:
In 2002 an Ontario CL-415 crew was able to refill 100 times within a 4 hour mission, dumping an astounding 162,000 US gallons (613,240 l) or 1,350,000 pounds (612 t) of water on a fire near Dryden Ontario.
- yowza! Lots of interesting info - thanks!

(And I loved that the Wikipedia article debunked the diver-scooped-up-and-dropped-on-a-fire urban legend!)
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 01/24/13 01:12 PM

Below is a vid that again was sent by another pilot friend of the now infamous B787 Dream Liner.

As you can see, it is totally automated - great as long as you don't get BSOD, ha! Flying this beast is the polar opposite of the forest fire fighting type of flying where almost everything is manual control.

Once they get the Lithium Battery problem fixed, it'll be quite a machine.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-s9ynMnPdCQ

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 04/23/14 11:32 PM

Resurrecting an old thread.

I came across this nostalgic video on YT (definitely not HD, ha!) that portrays my previous life as a young & crazy guy at Chatham, NB where I was based in the mid 70s:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnU-AIDoj-0

Hmmmm, as I'm typing this, we are getting a minor earthquake. My chair & window blinds are rocking laterally...

TAM
Posted by: Murph

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 04/24/14 08:01 AM

Still there Tam? I hope all is well. You're pretty well north of Vancouver where I'm reading it hit so hopefully it was just a bit of a shake for you.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: For all the Pilots / WWII Buffs . . . - 04/24/14 12:12 PM

Yup, still here - M6.6 I guess.

I felt it on the concrete slab downstairs but my wife upstairs didn't feel anything. Neighbours across the street felt it too.

The epicenter was about 100 miles from here & offshore a bit so it didn't damage too much farther south...

TAM