Personal mini airshow!

This is a discussion on Personal mini airshow! within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Was out in the back yard and saw this B17 fly over. It turns out the small airport around the corner was giving b17 rides, ...

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    Ex Member Array Doodle's Avatar
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    Personal mini airshow!

    Was out in the back yard and saw this B17 fly over. It turns out the small airport around the corner was giving b17 rides, so I grabbed my Nikon D3100 and waited at a pull over spot near the end of the runway for him to come back. Well he did and flew 50 feet over my head on short final. I got several photos but this is the best.
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    Senior Member Array RKflorida's Avatar
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    Good picture! Thanks

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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    good picture

    the last flying b-29 (so they say) and a p-51 are in CT this weekend.
    rides are $350 for 40 minutes and these machines are scarce!!
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    Great shot of a classic warbird, would love to get a ride on one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by claude clay View Post
    good picture

    the last flying b-29 (so they say) and a p-51 are in CT this weekend.
    rides are $350 for 40 minutes and these machines are scarce!!
    Would willingly pay that much especially if I could sit at the FE panel.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
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    That B17 comes to my airport every year. It's pretty cool. The same group owns a B17, a B25 and a gooney bird. All three show up here often.
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    Sweet. I might have to save my nickles and take a ride.
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    Ex Member Array Doodle's Avatar
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    I do love the sound of radial engines!
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    That is so freakin cool. Great photo!

    Many years ago, the software company that I worked for did a sales kick-off at an airport museum/airport. Free helo/bi-plane rides, buffet, open-bar, yadda yadda. I've done my share of flying & drinking, so I was more interested in the planes in the museum, particularly a B17 sitting there. You were free to climb through it, but I noticed an old gentleman in civilian clothes standing at parade-rest next to it. Our group was loud, drunk, and seemed to not even notice him standing there. I approached him and asked him if he was familiar with the aircraft. He said he was and was the navigator on that craft during WWII. This was before cell phones and digital video cameras, and I'd give anything to have been able to record our conversation after that. That gentle old hero walked me through that aircraft and shared his memories and experiences aboard that ship. I swear he got younger as we climbed though those narrow doors and he recounted his stories. I wish I could recall them better now. However that evening, I had the honor of a personal guided tour of a B17 by a veteran of the greatest generation.
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    Ex Member Array Doodle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WHEC724 View Post
    That is so freakin cool. Great photo!

    Many years ago, the software company that I worked for did a sales kick-off at an airport museum/airport. Free helo/bi-plane rides, buffet, open-bar, yadda yadda. I've done my share of flying & drinking, so I was more interested in the planes in the museum, particularly a B17 sitting there. You were free to climb through it, but I noticed an old gentleman in civilian clothes standing at parade-rest next to it. Our group was loud, drunk, and seemed to not even notice him standing there. I approached him and asked him if he was familiar with the aircraft. He said he was and was the navigator on that craft during WWII. This was before cell phones and digital video cameras, and I'd give anything to have been able to record our conversation after that. That gentle old hero walked me through that aircraft and shared his memories and experiences aboard that ship. I swear he got younger as we climbed though those narrow doors and he recounted his stories. I wish I could recall them better now. However that evening, I had the honor of a personal guided tour of a B17 by a veteran of the greatest generation.
    Wow would love to have met that guy.

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    The farm is surrounded by a horseshoe shape of hills. It is in a Military operation zone...... sometimes when fishing , I had to stop .... in the 60's, it was F4 Phantoms and A-6's, zooming just off the top of the hill having dog fights. The A-6's , beat the F4's every time due to the fact they could do a much sharper turn. So I would just sit back and watch them fight it out ... as they skimmed the hills, trees, and pastures. In the 70's, it was watching F16's having dog fights. I had front seat to some of the best airshows. The surprise was one day, when a B-52 came flying over just off the deck.

    Would love to watch some B-17's. Kansas was nothing but a major airfield for training B-25 pilots back in the WWII. There are old airfields all over Kansas from those days.
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    You really did freeze a neat moment in time. Great PIC. Thanks for posting it.
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    Senior Member Array rmilchman's Avatar
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    Great picture! McGuire AFB recently had an air show, wish they had more.

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    Cool pic...you didn't head down to the airport for a ride?
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    My little B-17 experience:
    During WWII my dad was an aircraft mechanic in Europe and N. Africa, I grew up listening to his many colorful stories. A B-17 flew into Shreveport several years ago offering rides, etc. He and I went out to the airport to look at it, and I was determined I'd take the hour long ride. He enjoyed looking at it as well, he was a bit crippled at the time and didn't attempt to tour the inside, though he was fine with that and mentioned to me, "You go look, I know what it looks like inside".

    While I waited for the take-off time I spent a good bit of time walking around it and taking it all in. I started noticing a series of oil leaks, all in the same spot under each engine. Not really commenting aloud about it, but apparently staring at where that oil was coming from and why. My dad said, "Don't worry about those, they all leaked in that same spot". End of worry.

    At take off time we all gathered for a little briefing and boarded the plane. With dummy bombs, deactivated MG's and enough souls for a full crew we taxied out to the runway. Considering the "load", I was really impressed how quick we got off the ground. We flew north of the city and flew a little circuit over some nice flat farm land at about 3000'. Each paying passenger would get about 10 minutes of flying time in the left hand seat. My time came and when I was crawling over the center controls I noticed that the real pilot was sheltering the position of the four throttles as I passed over them. Good idea. Over the intercom they'd ask each guest how much flying experience they had, I can fly, so he pretty much gave me the controls. Wow, it was great fun and a great experience. This doesn't sound necessarily complimentary, but it sort of reminded me of flying a big stable reliable truck.

    After my turn was over I continued walking around the plane while in flight. I happened to be in the bombadier glass nose, and WHAT A VIEW! I was sitting there and could actually see the airport from a distance, I also felt we were dropping some altitude and as we approached oddly enough I never heard the RPM's cut back. Then it dawned on me the real pilot is going to "buzz the field" and I happened to be sitting in the nose. Good grief, what an experience. After the buzz, we all had to return to a dedicated place to be during the landing and in the mix I happened to get a great place, and it was on the flight deck, standing directly behind the pilot. As we approached the airport I was able to squat down a little and watch his final from his point of view.

    That hour long ride was one of the best things I've ever done.

    My little B-24 experience:
    A few years ago a B-24 flew into Shreveport offering a similar hour long ride. I offered to take my Dad out there to see the B-24, by now he was in a wheelchair and having a really hard time getting around, but he was willing to go. Once again I decided to ride and while waiting spent a good deal of time looking at the B-24.

    It was pretty early in the morning and around 8 'oclock a van drives up with a bunch of sleepy-eyed kids getting out. I'm thinking they are here for a tour or paid passengers or whatever. All of a sudden they started fooling around with this plane that I'm about to ride on !!!!! I'm just about to panic when I realize this is the traveling ground crew for the plane?

    My apprehension did not really subside, these kids were all over this plane, and no obvious cigar smoking grizzly pilot directing them. I needed something to bolster my confidence. In my horror I looked and one of the kids, a young thin blond girl is walking on top of the wing, going from engine to engine with a 5 gallon bucket of something. I'm hoping she has chosen engine oil, but I'm concerned that maybe she has gotten it mixed up with a bucket of soap. I can just imagine up in flight, all four engines spewing out a exhaust stream of soap bubbles as we tumble back to earth on failing engines.

    Somehow or another, due to my current stupor, I found myself robotically walking over to the boarding line. Surely people thought I was a zombie of some sort, in fact I believe I caught my reflection and I had those dark circles under my eyes as well. We were in the "boarding line of death", I wanted to scream my theory that soap makes a bad lube, but could only babble nonsense. BTW, the B-24 isn't nearly as easy to walk through as the B-17, it's a maze and I found myself facing backwards sitting on some "shelf" toward the rear of the plane. Since a soap bubble death was imminent I didn't really care. It was interesting, I was sitting next to a father and son who had driven up from south Louisiana, the father had been a gunner on a B-24 during WWII, and hadn't been on one since. He was riding with us. It was sort of hard for him to get in that plane, but enough of us were there to help him in.

    I still hadn't seen the pilots, and with my confidence shattered the engines starts up for "their last time" and we taxi to the runway. The plane gets airborne, and we head south on a cloudy bumpy day. It was tough getting through that plane, but I'm determined to crawl to that flight deck and see John Wayne, our pilot. After much difficulty, I make it up there and look for the Duke in the left hand seat and who do I see? Our pilot, is the gal with the 5 gallon bucket of soap/oil, I quickly look outside at the engine exhaust. She reminded me exactly of my grown daughter, if she'd turned around and said "hey Dad" I wouldnt have been more surprised.

    It took me off-guard, but instantly made me realize this is a new generation of pilots, surely those old experienced pilots aren't flying anymore.

    We had a nice bumpy ride, this was not a let-you-fly trip, and we returned back to the airport. It was a good experience nonetheless, and despite my little humor was a great adventure too.
    Last edited by ppkheat; June 10th, 2012 at 11:33 AM.
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