Secrets of the Sea Mosquito

    Last week, The People’s Mosquito shared a video of their patron, the irreplaceable Capt. Eric “Winkle” Brown, discussing his role in testing the de Havilland Mosquito for carrier operations. Yes, you read that right: While the largest carrier-borne aircraft in service anywhere was the 10,545 lb Grumman Avenger (a big bird by any standard), the British were working out how to get on and … Continue reading Secrets of the Sea Mosquito

Triple Tale

Feature image courtesy of Every airplane has a life story. I couldn’t possibly tell them all, but I can trace the star of my Connie Crossing article, G-AHEL Bangor II, thanks largely to the remarkable research and image collecting of Paul Zogg at   A new world order G-AHEL started life on Lockheed’s Burbank production line in 1944, as just the 17th C-69 laid … Continue reading Triple Tale

Rose coloured plexiglasses

Feature image: US Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Mallory S. VanderSchans This is an article about the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Kind of. And from a somewhat different angle… Oh, and I can’t promise you’ll like it. Rose coloured plexiglasses So have you made up your mind about the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter yet? Because if you’re still sitting on the fence, I suspect you’re … Continue reading Rose coloured plexiglasses

Red Baron down

Who shot down the Red Baron? Not who you’re thinking. And not when or where you’re thinking either. So park what you know about Canadian fliers and Australian gunners on the Somme for a moment, and put April 21st, 1918 aside too. Manfred von Richthofen was actually shot down on March 6th, 1917, over Lens in Belgium. As he attacked a Sopwith 1-1/2 Strutter, von Richthofen found … Continue reading Red Baron down

Under the Bridge

  AvWeb titled their coverage “Silly Pilot Tricks, Part… (We’ve Lost Count)”. And rightly so. On Saturday May 1st, 2004, a certified pilot flew her Skyfox Gazelle, with passenger, under Sydney Harbour Bridge. Needless to say, the tempting duck under the deck was, and remains, strictly forbidden. In the ten years since, no-one has been quite able to explain how a CPL- and Instructor-rated pilot could … Continue reading Under the Bridge


  All this talk of future commercial airplanes rings with echoes of the past. Of course the 1940s’ Horten and Northrop flying wings are well known. But Britain was pushing on the technological ceiling at the same time – with their Armstrong Whitworth A.W.52. A grand vision While not a true flying wing (it had vertical surfaces at each wing tip for yaw control) the A.W.52 was … Continue reading A.W.52