The 2021 Aviation thread


Super ciliary
I don’t have a pilots license and don’t fly (back when I had the money to learn I didn’t have the time, now that I have the time I don’t have the money), and haven’t even flown commercially in over a year, but I’m still an airplane geek.  I liked the 2020 aviation thread, so I thought maybe it’s time to start one for this year.

To start things off, a contribution from another blog:

The AI colorizing was cool, but what really makes it work is the speed correction.  All the old films seem to be off speed and make the people in them seem herky-jerky and cartoonish.  When corrected it really seems to humanize them and makes the film so much more watchable.  Enjoy!


billy backstay

Backstay, never bought a suit, never went to Vegas
Thanks for the video Mr. Salt Water!!  Even though it's been colorized and AI enhanced,  I am gobsmacked of video tech of the day!!  Showing a wheel as they took off, and the props spinning, etc.   Also surprised to see no rear wheel, just a small skid.  Guess why they still call them "tail draggers"!



Super ciliary
A cool video about the development of the X-15.  I had heard that in the Right Stuff era the astronauts were pushing for the X-15 to be their ride into space rather than being passengers on a dumb capsuleI, but I didn’t know what issues were involved.  More respect now for the pilots of these things... They were pushing very far into the unknown with only a decent guess as to what might happen.

I’d have put this in the Thread for Videos thread, but there’s something in there that keeps crashing my phone.  There is a subtle segue to an ad at the end but you gotta pay for things somehow....

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Super Anarchist
Great Wet North
A cool video about the development of the X-15.  I had heard that in the Right Stuff era the astronauts were pushing for the X-15 to be their ride into space rather than being passengers on a dumb capsuleI,
They were pilots so they wanted to fly into space, not be human cannonballs. (SPAM in a can). They were working on winged craft beyond the X15 but the pressure of competition with Russia, especially after Gagarin, changed the focus to quick & dirty rockets & capsules.

That era was a great time to be a small boy.



Super ciliary
Yeah, massive respect to the pilots.... “Here, go fly this.  Just let us know if the skin melts off or anything.  By the way, the paint might explode if you hit it wrong, so just watch out.”  With all the engineering obstacles I can see why throwing a capsule up would be a lot more expedient.  Also comparatively less (!) risky, if not as romantic.

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Ventucky Red

Super Anarchist
Some guy built a replica P-38


Here is my contribution.  First taxi test of Waiex s/n 191.  My kid and I built this.  He was 12 when we started and he has logged over 500 hours of construction.  Now he is 20 and working on his master's in mechanical engineering.  He is also my main sailing partner and we have rescued some old H16s together.

Hoping for first flight this year.  I'm really down to paperwork and inspection.  In the first 30 seconds of video you can see part of my sailboat fleet.

Jack Bally (who built the 1/3 scale B17) was pretty close to where I live.  My EAA chapter flew down to check it out a couple of years ago but I didn't make it.  I did see it on display at Oshkosh this year.

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Very cool!  I've never flown a Hiller.  I learned to fly in an Enstrom F28A.  One of my former Sikorsky co-workers was retired from the Army and he had a lot of Hiller stories from his training, like having to run at full power on the ground to burn enough fuel to do a running takeoff.



Super Anarchist
I just finished the article "Flight Plan" in the New Yorker by Ann Patchett.  Anyone with a passing interest in flying might enjoy it.  It is also a credit to a wife in a wonderful marital partnership.



New member
Pilot here.  Actually just retired from Aviation.  Not intentionally.  The salaries keep getting worse and prices of everything keep going up, so I decided to bow out and get into something more lucrative like nonprofit work. ;)