News aircraft model, airplane model, B-17 Flying Fortress, B-24, B-24 bomber, B-24 Liberator, B24, desktop model, mahogany model, model aircraft, model airplane, model plane, p-51 mustang, plane model, scale model, warplanes, Wings of Freedom, wood plane model, wooden airplane model, World War II planes
SARASOTA, Florida — Three fully restored World War II planes are on display this week at Wings of Freedom at the Sarasota airport.
It’s part of a national tour drawing hundreds of spectators.
Tom Diggs of Sun City Center is one of those. He flew a B-24 bomber, one of the planes on display, for more than 500 hours leading up to and during the war.
His first mission was on D-Day and his second was two days later, when his plane was shot down over France. He then spent 60 days hiding from the Germans.
That was in June of 1944, but he hadn’t seen a B-24 since.
On Tuesday, the 92-year-old got back in the cockpit.
“I was part of history in that airplane, and it was a good feeling to be around the airplane again,” Diggs said.
The B-24 Liberator, B-17 Flying Fortress, and P-51 Mustang will be on display through Wednesday morning, before heading off to their next stop in Leesburg.
Thirty minute flights on board each aircraft are also available.
News aircraft model, airplane model, Aviation Nation, Aviation Nation air show, desktop model, F-16 Fighting Falcon, L-39 jet, mahogany model, model aircraft, model airplane, model plane, Nellis Air Force Base, p-51, p-51 mustang, plane model, scale model, Thunderbirds, warplanes, wood plane model, wooden airplane model
Spectators watched a safe and flawless performance at the Aviation Nation air show at Nellis Air Force Base on Saturday with little concern of a repeat of the tragedy at the Reno air races.
On Sept. 16, a souped-up World War II-vintage P-51 Mustang nose-dived into the crowd at the Reno-Stead Airport, killing 74-year-old pilot Jimmy Leeward and 10 spectators.
“When it’s your time, it’s your time,” said Joe Languemi, of North Las Vegas, who was sitting in the Nellis stands near the announcer’s platform watching the air show with his wife, Pat.
Like a half dozen other spectators who were interviewed while military aircraft performed daring stunts in a crisp azure sky, Languemi said he had no safety concerns whatsoever.
“This is a controlled environment,” he said, noting the difference between what Air Force officials have described as an “unscripted, dynamic competition” of the Reno air races versus the “choreographed, highly rehearsed aerial demonstrations” performed during Aviation Nation.
The difference in the two events, according to officials at the Nellis base, is that the annual air show and open house at Nellis is akin to a figure-skating performance instead of a short-track speed skating contest as would be the case of the National Championship Air Races in Reno.
At the two-day Aviation Nation event, which drew a total of 142,000 spectators for both days last year, aircraft fly within an “aerial box” cleared as a boundary between performers and spectators. Regulations dictate that aircraft can’t fly directly at the audience during the demonstration.
Air Force regulations also outlaw air races by fixed wing, rotary wing aircraft or hot air balloons.
Languemi’s friend, John Hinsvark, of Anchorage, Alaska, said the deadly crash in Reno didn’t stop him from watching Saturday’s Aviation Nation show at Nellis.
“Accidents happen. That’s why they call them accidents,” said Hinsvark, who was visiting Reno on Sept. 16 and thought about going to the air races that day but didn’t because his sister and her husband had other plans.
“It’s a shame,” said Hinsvark, a retired Army National Guard soldier. “It looks like the Reno air races won’t go on again.”
Not all of the tens of thousands of Aviation Nation spectators at the Nellis show on Saturday were as unconcerned as Hinsvark and Languemi.
“I was worried a little bit when the Patriots flew at each other,” said Becky Gelderloos, of Las Vegas, an Air Force wife who watched the show with her son, Tanner Ballard, and his girlfriend Candice Leigh.
She was referring to the Patriots Jet Team, a group of talented pilots flying L-39 jets. The team was founded by former United Airlines and Reno air race pilot Randy “Howler” Howell.
Nevertheless, Gelderloos said, “I feel safe here because I know these men and women know what they’re doing.”
Similarly, Trina Youngblood, of Ely, said she felt safe standing on the Nellis ramp with her family.
“The one in Reno was more air races. This is all military,” she said. “I think they are more regulated by our government.”
She said going to the Aviation Nation event gives her a sense of safety and pride for the armed forces.
Aviation Nation, which has free admission, continues today.
Parking lots at Las Vegas Motor Speedway will open at 8 a.m. with bus transportation to the base and gates open at 9 a.m. The show, with this year’s theme marking 70 years of air power in Las Vegas, begins at 11 a.m. and runs until after 2 p.m. when the Thunderbirds, led by Lt. Col. Case Cunningham, take off in their red, white and blue F-16 Fighting Falcon jets for the grand finale.
News aircraft model, airplane model, desktop model, f-16, Jimmy Leeward, mahogany model, model aircraft, model airplane, model plane, mustang, National Championship Air Races, Nevada air race, p-51, p-51 mustang, P-51 Mustang plane, p51, p51 mustang, plane crash, plane model, scale model, warplanes, wood plane model, wooden airplane model
The veteran aviator whose P-51 Mustang plane slammed into a crowd of Nevada air race spectators at 400 mph had no chance to save his ill-fated flight after likely losing consciousness from acceleration more abrupt and extreme than even what most fighter pilots endure, flying experts said.
Jimmy Leeward’s Mustang aircraft shot skyward like a rocket Friday before plunging into spectators at what appeared to be full throttle. Federal investigators continue to look for a cause of the crash at the National Championship Air Races that killed 11 people, including Leeward, and injured dozens, but have yet to come to a conclusion, something that could take months.
They’re focused on a range of possibilities, including Leeward’s health and the structural soundness of the plane after a piece of the tail called the “elevator trim tab” that helps control the aircraft’s pitch appeared to break off before the crash.
While some have called Leeward heroic for making a last-ditch maneuver around crowded stands, experts who have reviewed multiple amateur videos from the scene, photographs and witness accounts, doubt that theory. They say it appears Leeward wasn’t controlling the plane during the fateful last few seconds.
“He’s not there. He’s unconscious,” said Ernie Christensen, a retired rear admiral and former Vietnam fighter pilot who commanded the Navy’s Top Gun fighter school for a time in the 1980s.
Christensen said one key clue that Leeward wasn’t at the controls is the fact that his highly modified P-51 Mustang appeared to hit the ground at full throttle.
“The first thing you do when you get into those conditions is pull power, and that plane hit fast,” he said. “The power was up and that’s an indication he was not in control of the airplane when it hit.”
Leeward was midway through the Unlimited Gold heat race Friday when he narrowly missed the grandstands packed with fans and jerked into a steep climb at up to 500 mph, streaking skyward possibly a thousand feet or more before twirling and speeding into the ground.
Friday’s crash was the nation’s deadliest air racing disaster, with 11 confirmed dead and 14 others still being treated at Reno hospitals. In all, more than 70 people were admitted for injuries after the crashing plane sprayed shrapnel into the crowd of spectators, cutting limbs and other body parts.
Twenty pilots, including Leeward, have died at the races over the past 47 years, but this was the first time fans were killed.
Christensen said if Leeward were conscious, he would have cut power back once he gained altitude.
“Altitude is sanctuary,” he said.
“And his nose didn’t hang, it came over like he was doing almost a loop … and when his nose came down he started gaining air speed,” Christensen added. “This guy had the power up.”
Rough calculations by experts using video of the P-51 plane seconds before the crash indicate it might have been traveling at more than 400 mph when it suddenly went vertical, abruptly exerting 11 times the normal force of gravity on the pilot’s body, or 11 Gs, knocking him unconscious as the blood rushed from his brain.
By comparison, Christensen said, F-16 fighter pilots, who wear special suits to counter the G-forces, can typically take 9 Gs, but only for a limited time. And those are modern planes designed with tilted seats intended to help keep blood flow to the brain.
Average roller coasters expose riders to about 2 to 3 Gs, but only for brief moments.
Ken Liano, a structural engineer and aircraft consultant, said “it’s highly doubtful” Leeward was awake.
“My first thought when I saw the video was there’s no way that pilot is in control,” Liano said. “He went from horizontal to vertical so abruptly. No pilot would do that. Even an acrobatic pilot would probably not do that maneuver.”
Liano speculated the loss of the trim tab started the sequence of events. Leeward’s World War II-era plane was highly modified for speed, much like other aircraft at the races. But the plane wasn’t originally designed that way, so the extra speed gained from the modifications likely stressed the structure, causing the failure, he said.
“Eleven Gs is a lot,” said Dr. Daniel Foster, an active duty flight surgeon at Pensacola Naval Air Station in Florida. “It probably would have been very difficult for him to maintain consciousness.”
He said fighter pilots train to combat the G-forces using abdominal exercises, among other things, to keep the blood in their heads.
Typically, as the forces increase, Foster said, symptoms will gradually appear, such as nausea, faintness, then cloudy vision, and there’s time to work to counteract the impact on the body.
But if the extreme acceleration comes on suddenly, and is prolonged, such as the case with Leeward, “it can be very rapid,” Foster said. “You’d go from zero to unconscious.”
Celebration, News A-4 Skyhawk, aircraft models, airplane models, B-17 Flying Fortress, B-25 Mitchell Doo Little, Blue Angels, Corsair, f-16, F-16 Fighting Falcon, F-5, F/A-18, F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, F4F Wildcat, F4U Corsair, F4U-5NL, helicopter models, model airplanes, model helicopters, model planes, NAS Meridian, Naval Air Station Meridian, Naval Air Station Meridian to Celebrate 50th with an Air Show, Northrop F-5, p-51 mustang, plane models, SB2C Helldiver, SBD Dauntless, T-2 Buckeye, T-28 Trojan, T-45C Goshawks, Viper, Vought F4U-5NL Corsair, warplanes, wooden airplane models
In 2011, Naval Air Station Meridian celebrates its 50th anniversary honoring the commissioning of the base in July 1961, along with celebrating the Centennial of Naval Aviation.
What a better way to celebrate than with an air show featuring the Navy’s elite Flight Demonstration Squadron, the Blue Angels. NAS Meridian Commanding Officer Capt. Charles Gibson has announced that “Golden Wings Over Meridian” is set for March 26-27. The Angels last performed at NAS Meridian in March 2008 for a record-breaking crowd of more than 90,000 spectators. The NAS Meridian air show will be the third stop during the Blue Angels’ 38-show 2011 season.
The NAS Meridian Air Show Committee is working diligently to book additional acts and demonstration aircraft. As in years past, the air show will be free and open to the public.
Famed air show announcer Rob Reider returns to NAS Meridian to narrate the air show. Reider is an entertainer, pilot, Midwest television personality, singer, performer, writer, and winner of five Emmy awards. This is Rob’s 33rd year as an announcer and his sixth as a full-time air show announcer. With 88 shows completed in the last four years, he’s excited about the upcoming season.
All of his entertainment, show business, video, and aviation experience have given him the ability to communicate the excitement of air shows to the audience. “I’ve never gotten over just how amazing air show performers are,” Rob notes on his web site. “Narrating a show is a wonderful opportunity to try to put an audience ‘into the cockpit.’ Besides, when I’m announcing, I have the best seat in the house!”
One of the most exciting moments during the air show will be when the classic Warbirds Demonstration Team takes to the sky over NAS Meridian. Known as the Trojan Horsemen, the pilots’ repertoires include both four-ship and six-ship formation demonstrations including formation aerobatics by the two solo pilots. The routine is a patriotic tribute to the United States Armed Forces with music and narration.
The team is built around the T-28 Trojan aircraft — a crowd pleasing, large, fast and loud warbird with combat history and a growling 1425 HP radial engine. The aircraft have smoke systems and sport authentic U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy paint schemes and markings to complement the patriotic theme.
The 16-member team consists of former military pilots, decorated veterans, instructors, airline pilots, and experienced civilian air show pilots with hundreds of years combined experience, unblemished safety records, and all required credentials.
The Black Daggers — the U.S. Army Special Operations Command Parachute Demonstration Team will also appear at the air show.
The mission of the Black Daggers is to perform live aerial demonstrations in support of Army Special Operations community relations and recruiting. Comprised of volunteers from throughout Army Special operations the Daggers have diverse backgrounds and are skilled in various military specialties including Special Forces, Rangers, civil affairs, psychological operations and signal and support. The team represents the professionalism and dedication of special operations forces.
Also scheduled to perform is the Viper West, one of two F-16 demonstration teams in the U.S. Air Forces’ Air Combat Command. Viper West is based at Hill Air Force Base in Utah. The F-16 Fighting Falcon, more commonly known to military pilots as the Viper, is a compact, extremely maneuverable multi-role fighter aircraft. The F-16 has proven itself in air-to-air combat as well as air-to-surface attack. It provides a relatively low-cost, high-performance weapon system for the air forces of the United States and other allied nations.
Also performing will be the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. The aircraft has several advancements over the F/A-18C/D model including greater range and endurance; carries heavier payloads; enhanced survivability, and built-in scalable solutions for potential future systems and technologies. In addition, the F/A-18E/F was awarded the 1999 Collier Award recognizing the Super Hornet as the most capable and survivable carrier-based combat aircraft.
Another exciting performance will come from the F4U Corsair. Definitely one of the most distinctive designs ever employed by a fighter aircraft, the Vought F4U-5NL Corsair lives as one of the most famous fighters built during World War II. Its gull-wing design to allow the propeller to rotate without hitting the ground made it an icon for a generation of plane “buffs” who knew the stories of such groups as the “Black Sheep Squadron” who utilized the F4U-5NL. Used in Korea as a carrier-based fighter and night fighter, the Corsair showed its technologically advanced features to survive in an era where propeller-driven fighters were being replaced by jets.
The Northrop F-5 will thrill onlookers during its performance. The F-5 is the primary adversary aircraft used at the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center at NAS Fallon, Nev., otherwise known as TOPGUN. These aircraft are picked as adversary aircraft due to the similar flight characteristics of aircraft used by other nations.
Also performing will be the F4F Wildcat, SB2C Helldiver, SBD Dauntless, B-17 Flying Fortress, B-25 Mitchell Doo Little, A-4 Skyhawk, T-2 Buckeye, T-28 Trojan and P-51 Mustang. NAS Meridian’ T-45C Goshawks will perform a fly-over.
Static displays include the E-2 Hawkeye, SBD-5 Avenger, C-17 Globemaster, C-1 Trader and SNJ-5 Texan.
Blog Articles, Trivia p-51, p-51 car, p-51 mustang, p51
Look! Down on the ground! It’s a deer! It’s a car! Yes! It’s P-51 Mustang car!
Roush Performance is an automotive company that provides engineering from racing cars to street cars. And in 2008, the 151 limited-edition Roush P-51A Mustangs were sold out just within 24 hours of its introduction. And in 2009, Roush released another set of P-51-inspired cars. But only 51 P-51B Mustang cars were produced.
The P-51A Mustang car by Roush Performance
Major modifications to the completely rebuilt 4.6 liter V8 include a forged eight-bolt crank, forged aluminum pistons that lower compression from 9:8 to 8:6, a custom upper and lower intake manifold, custom Roush fuel rail with high-flow fuel injectors, a dual electronic throttle body, and the latest ROUSHcharger supercharger with intercooler. It’s all good for 510 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque, and all of that even comes with a 3 year/36,000 mile warranty, something many tuner cars don’t boast.
Inspired by the WWII fighter plane’s paint scheme, the P-51A had steel gray panels accented with the yellow and red colors used by the 357th Fighters Group, Eighth Air Force ETO (European Theater Operations), one of the most successful American aerial combat groups.
The P-51B Mustang car released in 2009
However, the P-51B is set apart from the P-51A by the addition of black chrome wheels wrapped in Cooper RS3 rubber that exposes six-piston brake calipers. A Roush Stage 3 suspension kit improves handling. Interior and exterior styling is tweaked to reflect the WWII motif, with olive drab stripes on the silver exterior. Different hues are used on the six-piece Roush body kit to reflect the patchwork look of combat-repaired fighter planes, as well. Red and yellow checkerboard accents complete the WWII flyboy look. On the inside, Roush adds a vent pod gauge set with boost gauge and P-51B logos on the shifter ball, seats and floor mats. Options include an integrated Escort Passport 9500i laser/radar defense system, toolkit and a Roush exhaust. Available through Roush-approved Ford dealers, the ultra-rare P-51B Mustang came with a three-year, 36,000-mile warranty and an MSRP of $65,800.
Only 51 P-51B Mustangs were produced
Air Force, Blog Articles, Trivia p-39, p-39 cobra, p-40, p-40 warhawk, p-47, p-47 thunderbolt, p-51, p-51 mustang, p-51c, p39, p39 cobra, p40, p40 warhawk, p47, p47 thunderbolt, p51, p51 mustang, p51c, tuskegee
The CAF Red Tail Project
During World War II, African Americans were trained as pilots by the U.S. Army Air Corps but racial discrimination was still rampant that time whether within or outside the army. They were tasked to operate as segregated units and were not allowed to train or fight together with white Americans even if they were fellow countrymen. Thus, they painted their P-51s’ tails with red paint in order to distinguish themselves among others.
Tuskegee pilots in front of a P-40
The Tuskegee airmen were dedicated to serve their country even if they were not treated well. And this dedication honed their skills resulting to them being the most requested fighter escorts to white bomber pilots. Their abilities were so remarkable that only 66 died in the war and 32 became prisoners of war, which also gave them the nickname “Red Tail Angels.”
The Red Tail Angels initially flew P-40 Warhawks, changed into P-39 Cobras, then P-47 Thunderbolts, and finally, P-51 Mustangs.
And now, a non-profit group dedicated to spreading the heroic performances and contributions of the legendary Tuskegee airmen have conducted the Red Tail Project. This project was established in order to tell the heroic tales of the Tuskegee airmen through restoring a P-51 C Mustang.
Aside from restoring a P-51 C Mustang, the project also aims to educate the youth about the Tuskegee pilots through school presentations and a traveling museum (according to the project’s website).
They also join air shows in different parts of the U.S.
The restored P-51C in flight
This ambitious project comes with a heavy price tag so they accept donations for the project. Contact information and other further details can be found on their website at http://www.redtail.org.