Ramblings about flying for fun and profit.

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No Aviation Links the Week

Sorry folks, I just couldn’t find any worthy flying article links this week. Maybe all the usual writers were out on vacation or something. P-51 Mustang

I do have a few photos for you though. One of the many fun things about being based at Reno-Stead Airport is that it is often a fuel stop for some interesting planes.

In the past couple of weeks we have had visits from two very nice warbirds.

This Mustang arrived from Chino Airport in Southern California. The owner down there had sold it and the pilot was on a long round-robin flight to deliver it to the new owner – somewhere in the Midwest.

P-51 Mustang at Reno-Stead Airport.

It was a beautifully polished version of the Mustang. That day the winds were blowing at about 25 knots, luckily close to down the runway.  They were forecast to increase to the 40-know range, so the pilot was not dragging his feet getting the refueling completed.

He was nice enough to do a fly-by on his way north. That really is a nice sound.

We had another arrival from Chino late last week.

P-38 LightningThis time it was the Planes of Fame P-38, flown by John Maloney on it’s way to an airshow in Idaho.

There were 10,000 of these made and, as best as I can determine, there are only 10 airworthy examples left. The P-38 is the only American WWII fighter that was being produced when Pearl Harbor was attacked and continued to be produced until the end of the war.

P-38 Lightning at Reno-Stead Airport

I looked at the meter on the fuel truck when they finished refueling. It said they had put 160 gallons in to the plane. At Stead’s current price (self-service, not full service truck price, which they used) they fill-up was a bit over $900.

Just one more reason why I don’t own one – though it sure would be nice, wouldn’t it?

Here’s a short (90 sec) video I took as John was leaving.

A New Restoration Project

As I mentioned in the last post, I saw an unfamiliar hulk sitting on the ramp at the Reno-Stead Airport the other day and was compelled to take a closer look.

I walked around the fuselage a few times while the crew was looking at their new project.  All the writing stenciled on the surfaces and in the cockpit is Cyrillic.

I don’t know who bought the project, why they got it or where they got it. It looks to me to be a huge project with the added complexity of foreign manuals translated to English – which hasn’t been really successful in the other cases I have seen. I guess it depends on whether the translator is changing a primary language to a second language or translating a second language to a primary one (which of the two languages does the translator usually speak). Technical manuals are sometimes difficult even if you know the language.










When I was there the crew was looking in all the compartments trying to identify the different aircraft systems.  The first project was to get the landing gear extended, even if the fuselage remained on jacks as a precaution. Which systems would have to be activated to make the gear extension work? Electrical and hydraulic for sure.  But there were wire bundles cut in a couple of compartments, probably where equipment had been removed before exporting the project.


I didn’t have many takers in the effort to identify the project. Only one reader replied and was at a loss. I guess it’s a bit too obscure for easy research.

The single-place version is designed to provide close air support for ground forces – the air-to-ground role. The NATO designation is “Frogfoot” and the official model name is Sukhoi SU-25UB for this two-seat trainer variant. You can find out more about the aircraft here.


Aviation Articles for August 5, 2011

Here are some flying articles that you may have missed this week.

tail view of the restoration project at Reno-Stead.

The way to live on an airpark
This article is from the Denver Post. I guess all it takes is being a successful orthopedic surgeon to be able to live your aviation dream.

The Rutan Boomerang
This article is from Wired.com. If you missed going to AirVenture this year then you missed seeing Burt Rutan’s Boomerang on display. It’s such an unusual airplane that I thought I’d include it in the line-up this week. It was as much a hit this year as when he first brought it to Oshkosh in 1996.

Aviation history in St Louis
This article is from St. Louis today. Back in the days when aviation record-setting was in it’s infancy a couple of pilots spent some time looking down on St. Louis from a Curtiss-Robin.

A 70th Anniversary Celebration
This article is from the NPR website. The Tuskegee Airmen are celebrating their 70th anniversary. They met in Washington recently and had a chance to see one of their old trainers again. I mentioned this restored plane purchased on eBay in a previous post when the Smithsonian announced it would be displayed in the Air & Space Museum.

Did we forget a celebration?
This article is from the Yuma Sun. Harriett Quimby received her pilot’s license on July 31st in 1911, the first woman to do so. Her legacy lives on with this young pilot.

The key is to stay busy.
This article is from the Green Valley (AZ) News. C.W. and Rod are both retired from successful careers and they both share a common desire – to build and fly their own airplane. Sounds like they’ll succeed again.

For those of you who have made it this far in the article – here’s a challenge. A new aircraft restoration project at Reno-Stead. As I was driving along the ramp yesterday I happened to see the hulk shown here and in the photo above sitting there with a few people crawling around it. It turns out that the local FBO has a new restoration project and it had just been delivered. Can you identify what it is? Yes, I know the answer – and I’ll post an article in a couple of days with an explanation and more photos.

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