February 1, 2006
GENERAL While learning to fly in 1911, what pilot (who later became famous) caught a bug in one eye, purchased a pair of motorcycle goggles at a local five-and-dime store, and pioneered the use of goggles in airplanes? What unmodified, production, multiengine airplane with constant-speed propellers had more throttles than propeller-pitch controls? Who was Ormer Locklear? On May 8, 1951, the single-engine and directional-control capabilities of a new light twin were boldly demonstrated. With its left propeller stowed in the cabin, the fully loaded twin took off from Oklahoma City using only its right engine and flew that way to Washington, D.C.
- While learning to fly in 1911, what pilot (who later became famous) caught a bug in one eye, purchased a pair of motorcycle goggles at a local five-and-dime store, and pioneered the use of goggles in airplanes?
- What unmodified, production, multiengine airplane with constant-speed propellers had more throttles than propeller-pitch controls?
- Who was Ormer Locklear?
- On May 8, 1951, the single-engine and directional-control capabilities of a new light twin were boldly demonstrated. With its left propeller stowed in the cabin, the fully loaded twin took off from Oklahoma City using only its right engine and flew that way to Washington, D.C. What type of airplane was that?
- Pilots need to be familiar with V-speeds. What is the meaning of VPD, a relatively new term?
- From reader Dave Shotsberger: Why did pilots flying across the north Atlantic Ocean from the United States to Europe via Greenland and Iceland during the 1940s and 1950s refer to that track as the "Blue Spruce Route"?
- Dutch roll is an undesirable aircraft instability and oscillatory motion combining roll, slip, and yaw that can be very uncomfortable and induce nausea. Why is it called "Dutch roll"?
- From reader Mark Barchenko: Where did the first air traffic controller work, and how did he control traffic?
- From reader Hal Fishman: The first type of airplane to be flown solo over the North Pole to a destination on the "other side" was a
- Beech Model 18 Twin Beech.
- Lockheed 10 Electra.
- Lockheed Vega.
- North American P-51 Mustang.
- The greatest ambient temperature change ever recorded in one day at any place in the United States was
- 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
- 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
- 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
- The new Airbus A380 has _____ landing-gear wheels.
TRUE OR FALSE
- From reader Jon Stark: Early North American P-51 Mustangs had Allison V-1710 engines. Later models were powered by Merlin engines designed by Rolls-Royce. The American and British engines turned in opposite directions, so that Mustang pilots counter p-factor by applying right or left rudder, depending on the engine.
- A helicopter has never been flown nonstop across the Atlantic Ocean.
- Balloonists use hydrogen as a lifting gas because it is the lightest.
TEST PILOT ANSWERS
- Henry "Hap" Arnold, the only person ever to become a five-star general in both the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force.
- The Convair B-36 Peacemaker had six reciprocating engines and four jet engines (10 throttles and six prop controls). A purist might argue that there were six throttles and four thrust levers, but the Air Force referred to all 10 as throttles.
- On April 27, 1920, Locklear was issued the first "aerial law violation" in the United States (for "reckless aerial driving" over Los Angeles) and was fined $25. He was killed at Cecil B. De Mille Airfield near Los Angeles while performing an "aerial stunt" for the film The Skywayman.
- It was the prototype of the Aero Commander, which was designed by Ted R. Smith, father of the Aerostar. The lines of the Aero Commander were borrowed from a previous Smith design, the World War II Douglas A-20 Havoc attack bomber.
- VPD is the maximum demonstrated parachute-deployment speed for aircraft so equipped.
- It was necessary to follow the coast of eastern Canada almost as far northeast as possible, an area noted for its preponderance of blue spruce trees.
- The most common explanation is that it reminded some of the rolling motion of a high-speed ice skater on the frozen canals of Holland.
- At the St. Louis Airport in the late 1920s, Archie League received arrival notices by telephone and searched the sky for airplanes before clearing others for takeoff using a checkered flag. Other equipment included a red flag, a folding chair, drinking water, and a sunshade.
- (d) On May 29, 1951, Brig. Gen. Charles F. Blair Jr., who was married to actress Maureen O'Hara, flew his P-51, Excalibur III, from Bardutoss, Norway, to Fairbanks, Alaska (3,260 statute miles), in 10 hours, 27 minutes.
- (b) The temperature dropped from 44 to minus 56 degrees Fahrenheit at Browning, Montana, on January 23 through 24, 1916.
- (a) There are two four-wheel trucks (eight), two six-wheel trucks (12), and two wheels on the nose gear, a total of 22.
- False. The propellers of all Mustangs rotate the same way (clockwise as seen from the cockpit).
- True. Helicopters have been flown across the North Atlantic, however, using Greenland and Iceland as steppingstones.
- True. Despite hydrogen's flammability and the Hindenburg disaster, balloonists (especially in Europe) have been using the gas safely for more than 50 years.
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