Sunday, October 12, 2008

More from the air museum...

...into areas that were a little more problematic photographically.

Putting aircraft into enclosed spaces makes close-up viewing easy, but good photography difficult. Next time, I'll take better camera equipment!

We're all used to seeing aircraft in more "natural" settings: in the air or on runways. Here, because of walls and the sheer number of displays, you can't step back enough to take them in.

This "Gee Bee" R-1 racing plane (one of a series of 11 or so built in 1932-33) was almost small enough to fit in the picture frame from any angle. This was a radical and ultra-fast airplane in its day, but was -- shall we say -- a bit rough on its pilots. It won races easily when piloted by aces like Jimmy Doolitlle, but bit back at those with less skill in a simple way: it killed them...



This Fleet Model 2 was almost as small, but was packed into its space so tightly that I couldn't get it all. I was fascinated by it, because I have flown in a near-identical plane of similar vintage (that one was called an Aero Commuter) and it was one of the best flying experiences of my life. Behind and above, a Curtiss "Robin," one of the earliest commercially available planes with a fully-enclosed cockpit...



The museum has plenty of early aircraft from World War I and thereafter (and a few built before that). Many are originals, although some, such as this 1917 Fokker Dr-1 triplane are painstakingly created replicas...



Others, like the Curtiss JN4-D "Jenny," built to train WWI pilots and later used for "barnstorming" stunt shows, mail delivery and other purposes, are suspended from the museum's high ceilings, giving a view that seems unusual, yet is somehow "right," though only the truly dedicated (or truly crazy) fan would stand directly under one flying over at that altitude!...



More in a while.

5 comments:

Birdie said...

we had one of those GeeBee's attend one of our air shows a few years back. It was the big hit!

MrScribbler said...

birdie -- I'm assuming you're speaking, well, metaphorically! ;-)

DAL said...

A biplane flew over here the other day. I didn't have my camera... No wonder the GeeBee was so hard to fly, it's all fuselage and bumblebee wings :-)

Anonymous said...

Great variety of aircraft they have there. Notice the rope ladder suspended below the Jenny? We need to get together some day and do a day of cars, then a day of airplanes. What a "trip" that would be. :)

S

Birdie said...

ha ha of course I meant a big success! heehee