Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Air Force Museum

An incredible bargain, and I just can't get enough of it. Co-pilot Egg and I went out to the Air Force Museum near Dayton today. Open 363 days a year, free admission and parking, and an unbelievable collection of airplanes, missles, and all things Air Force and air history.

I took the new camera to see how it would do in the hostile lighting of the museum. It's darn hard to get a good picture in there - I've been trying for years with little to no success. This time, though, I got a few that I thought were worth sharing.

One goal I had was to get some pictures of F-86 gunports, still thinking I might want to try to decorate the nose of the RV with a nice set of simulated ports. I chuckled when I found them - they have the soot stains that I finally ended up deciding lookes too fake:

That made me chuckle, but this next picture made me laugh out loud! This is a reconaissance version of the F-86 which I've never seen or heard about before. Look at the gun ports:

They're decals!! I got a real kick out of that since that's what I'll be trying to do. I hope I can get them better looking than that, though.

I also saw these four "flight lesson" posters for the first time, and really liked them:

I've always liked the paint job on this P-26 Peashooter. I'd like to paint a plane to look like this someday:

I also got a pretty good shot of the Curtiss P-6E that I thought would make a good paint scheme for a restored Pitts:

This one is a crop that I think turned out pretty well. The original shot was nothing special, but I was fooling around seeing how much detail I could pull out of the 8 megapixels, and like the result:

They had a temporary exhibit going showing the Disney art that was used as nose art. As I was setting up to take a picture, I was approached by a docent who wanted to confirm that I was not a professional photographer. The new camera must have prompted the question since I didn't see any of the other people with cameras being so queried. I told her that I had never been accused of that before, and wondered why it mattered. I never found out. Anyway, this turned out pretty well. It's just about the only one that didn't need a lot of touchup on the computer:

Boy, I really like German engines! This is a Bf109 WWII German fighter:

The weather cleared up on the way back home, so I was even able to get the RV-6 out for a quick flight. I took a friend of the wife's that had never been in a small plabe for a lap of Columbus. The air was glass smooth, and the visibility under clear skies was a good 10 miles. I think he enjoyed the ride - he says he's always thought he might want to learn to fly, and now he's sure of it! That RV grin is sure contagious!

Winds were 170 @ 11 knots, which is a quartering headwind from the left. No problem on takeoff or landing, although the takeoff did have a left swerve when the tailwheel lifted, just like last time I flew. I need to get out and do some stop and goes as soon as I get another chance. Also of note, the winds at 5000' had us doing 185 knots in level cruise, and 120 when we turned around and came back. I think 185 is a new level flight speed record for me. We also reached a bit of an anniversary: the tach went from 199 hours to 200 hours sometime while we were flying.

No comments:

Post a Comment