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View Diary: Flying the B-52 - Part 2 (113 comments)

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  •  IIRC Carswell AFB had a 12,000' runway (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KenBee, ER Doc, NYFM, shortfinals, JeffW, Simplify

    and the BUFFs used every inch.  I heard rumors about SAC mission planning, that if you planned a 12 hr mission, and got the winds aloft wrong and were back in 11 hours, you shot touch and goes till your 12 hours were up....

    Republic Aircraft (P-47, F-84, even F-105) also had a reputation for using up all of the runway before they unstuck.  Seems that there was an enterprising crew chief that stuck a bag of sand in the nose gear well of an F-84.  He rigged it up so that when the pilot got tired of racing down the runway, he pull the cord, spill sand in front of the nose wheel which would then decide it was in the overrun and now could lift off......

    “that our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry.” Thomas Jefferson

    by markdd on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 01:12:14 PM PST

    •  The late Jeff Ethel, in a P-47 video, (9+ / 0-)

      related the tale that some wag once opined, "if you could build a runway around the world, Republic could build an airplane that would use all of it."

      Love that line.

    •  11,500' must have been the minimum SAC runway (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bwren, Over the Edge, BlackSheep1, Wheever

      and as Major Kong relates here, it also helps to have "nice wide taxiways and runways".  As I commented in his first diary, my experience with B-52s comes mainly from having grown up not far from Westover AFB in Chicopee, Mass.
      I just checked and Westover has an 11,500' runway, and it's 300' wide! (typical runways are 200') I had also always heard WAFB had exceptionally long runways- I notice its chevrons are quite long- 1000' each!  Perhaps Westover simply was one of the first bases with such long runways?

      Anyways, I also love the discussion about takeoff.  Since Westover's runway runs SW to NE, I imagine they were taking off at quite an angle all the time due to the prevailing winds being NW.  How many degrees could the line of the plane be rotated from the wheels I wonder?

      Also loved hearing about the flaps.  Seeing the planes come in bristling with control surfaces made them really quite a sight- this coupled with their thunderous noise!  I love this.  Really think the B-52 is a pinnacle technological achievement.  Right up there with Apollo.

      There are very few subjects which do not interest or fascinate me.

      by NYFM on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 03:37:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My dad was stationed at Westover (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NYFM, BlackSheep1, Simplify

        1961-1965. I mentioned in the last diary that he flew KC-97s, the four prop air refueling planes.

        By the time we left for the west coast I could ID aircraft by the sound of their engines overhead.

        I came for the politics and stayed for the science.

        by bwren on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 06:29:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Ever hear a Piaggio Avanti? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          billmosby

          Like a tiny modern B-36, the rearward-facing props cut through the wing wake. Very distinctive.

          Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

          by Simplify on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 12:00:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Very pretty plane. We have a Beech Starship (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Simplify

            at a tech school here in SLC. They only made about 10 of them if I remember correctly. Too radical for the conservatives who buy business planes? Anyway, the same layout as the Avanti, but far more pedestrian a design than that beautiful Italian.

            Here's a shot I took of it in 06 at the small jet part of SLC airport.

            Moderation in most things.

            by billmosby on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 03:37:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I actually like the Starship aesthetic more (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              billmosby

              Its history reads a lot like that of GM's electric car.

              So many advanced designs don't make it. Adam Aircraft A500, Piper Altaire...

              Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

              by Simplify on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:52:41 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Credit Burt Rutan for the Starship (0+ / 0-)

              and dozens of other innovations, highly efficient, wickedly counter-intuitive fiberglas or carbon fiber. A national treasure.

               "He designed the record-breaking Voyager, which was the first plane to fly around the world without stopping or refueling, and the sub-orbital spaceplane SpaceShipOne, which won the Ansari X-Prize in 2004 for becoming the first privately funded spacecraft to enter the realm of space twice within a two week period. He has five aircraft on display in the National Air and Space Museum: SpaceShipOne, the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer, Voyager, Quickie, and the VariEze."

              see also Scaled Composites
              http://en.wikipedia.org/...

          •  Avantis fly out of Oakland, CA frequently (0+ / 0-)

            KOAK has had frequent visits from what I have been told are a small fleet of Piaggio Avanti owned by a small charter airline. I can't remember their call sign.

            When I was at Oshkosh - EAA AirVenture Piaggio had a newer version on display and I asked the sales guy why the distinctive sound and why a bit louder than most turboprops.

            His explanation was that to obtain approval for IFR (instrument) flight in known icing conditions they had to de-ice the rear-facing props. Their solution is to place the turbine exhaust outlets to heat the props.  The undesired result is an acoustic beat common to many pusher props as the props flow through the exhaust.

            I don't know how noisy it is inside but they say minimal.

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