June 4, 2007

Yet more airshow stuff

My apologies to those of you who have zero interest in this sort of thing. But here's some more shots for those who do.

The above shows Jim LeRoy doing one of the most amazing things to see. All three aerobatic pilots at the show performed this maneuver. (in addition to LeRoy, Michael Wiskus, Jurgis Kairys, and Tim Weber in the Geico sponsored plane performed Saturday) They flew along the runway sideways, only about 10 ft above the ground, with their planes rolled 90 degrees and angled up just enough to keep them from losing altitude. To see a plane flying along sideways is a weird thing indeed, it requires a skilled hand and a very powerful plane, and as with all their routines, one false move by the pilot and they're in serious trouble.

Much like NASCAR cars, Jim LeRoy's Bulldog has ever available surface covered with sponsor ads. This is the aircraft equivalent of a Lamborghini.



Jurgis' Extra and Jim Leroy's Bulldog racing straight up.


Here aerobatic pilot Michael Wiskus wedges himself into the cockpit of his Lucas Oil plane. It must be kind of odd having to go to work with a parachute strapped on your back. If you enlarge the shot, you can see the black object extending from his wing spar with wires at the end. This denotes the segments of a circle and allows the pilot to look out the wing and judge how he's aligned with the horizon and at what angle in order to do precise maneuvers.

Below is his helmet and cockpit after his routine showing the short-hand notes which lays out his routine. Each mark indicates exact maneuvers. How you follow it when you're flinging yourself in every direction is beyond me.



Above two Thunderbirds streak past nearly touching. (of course they're slightly offset, (the inverted plane is closer) but still...)

Note in the shot below just how precise the formation is. You could take a ruler and draw a line through the wing tips of all three aircraft. How they accomplish this is nothing short of amazing.



Here's a shot of the Shockwave semi "racing" Jurgis Kairy's Extra down the runway. The Shockwave is capable of reaching speeds over 300 mph and has to deploy parachutes to slow down.



The business end of one of NASA's F/A-18's, including the tailhook for carrier landings. These planes are used for chase aircraft to observe various aerial experiments.

And the nose, with the mid-air refueling boom.

This is a little known aircraft, the Douglas Skyraider, that was introduced in the latter stages of WWII and saw service all the way through Vietnam, where it was used for it's ability to carry massive amounts of varied weapons. It could carry more bomb weight than the B-17.

This particular model is an AD-5 "Fat Face" Spad, as they were called.

It's engine was the most powerful engine ever put into a single engined military plane and the plane itself is massive.

To give you an idea of its size, here's a shot with some spectators standing in front of it. Think that prop can push a lot of air?



Above is the famous gull winged F4U Corsair, used extensively in the Pacific during WWII. The gull wing design was necesitated by needing very long landing gear to provide clearance for the large prop.

The F4U taxis from the flight line to the runway.

The P-51 taxis back to parking after it's fly-by.

2 Comments:

At 6/05/2007 1:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How wonderful to share the picture of the corsair. That airplane is more impressive then the jets. There are so few corsair's still flying in the world - that this was a highlight.

 
At 6/05/2007 2:27 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Since you enjoy the Corsair, I'll post a video clip of it starting up and taxiing. (if it's not too big to upload) It was a real treat to be able to look it over close up.

I also got a shot of the cockpit instrumentation which I'll post and maybe a few others.

 

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