The things people throw away are sometimes… Interesting…


Based on the translation by a Japanese lady, this is an original WWII Kamikaze pledge flag, signed by over 100 Kamikaze pilots late in the war. The money at the bottom is two WWII 100 Yen notes.

The irony is, nobody knows who turned this in to be destroyed. It was in a bunch of US flags that were to be destroyed.

And I was given this by somebody who was going to throw it out…

This is a 1955 pilot’s computer for computing airspeed at various altitudes and temperatures. Of note, it does NOT have a Mach scale on it, because Mach speeds were still the province of the military, and very few (early F-100s and F-102) production aircraft were capable of it, and this computer was produced for airline pilots.


TBT… — 22 Comments

  1. My dad got his private pilot’s license when he was still in High School and flew until the 1970’s when I was in my teens.

    I stumbled upon his “Whiz wheel” when I was about 13 or 14 and he taught me how to use it for dead reckoning navigation. I was always fascinated by that.

    Mom gave me his flight log when he passed as a momento, but I have no idea what happened to that whiz wheel. I wish I had it too.

  2. That Whiz Wheel is exactly like a standard E-6B that is given to every new pilot for fuel and airspeed and lots of other calculations. Add the slider and it is useful for wind adjustments and such.

  3. Buried somewhere in my stack of stuff are my Whiz Wheels for Effects of Nuclear Weapons. Flash-To-Bang calculations, yield, thermal pulse, overpressure ranges, etc.

  4. Any sub drivers able to tell us if the whiz wheel is similar to a torpedo targetting calculator ?

  5. That’s sad that they were getting thrown out. They mean something to someone who is no longer here and likely long gone, and didn’t explain the meaning to those left behind.

  6. FrankC, it is similar to the torpedo targeting calculator in that it is a circular slide rule used for calculating vectors. Of course, the actual values calculated would be a bit different.
    As someone who is both qualified in submarines and also holds private pilots license, I have familiarity with both. (I still have my original “Whiz Wheel” from my pilot training back in the seventies.) It’s made out of aluminum and is about 8 inches in diameter.

  7. Re: The Kamikaze “flag”

    Why can’t I ever find stuff like that!

  8. All- Thanks for the comments, and no, I don’t know why the spelling is different either.

  9. Sadly the modern hip children of the newer generations don’t want old and busted stuff even if it does have historical value. Furniture that is as sturdy as the day it was made 200 years ago is thrown out in favor of Ikea’s latest piece of dog squeeze that will fall apart in the Florida humidity (because Sweden isn’t Florida humid, duh.)

    Same with pans. I see regularly where people throw away heavy stainless pans and get ‘new’ cheap aluminum that sucks.

    And other stuff. No concern for family history. The person at family gatherings that drones on about the family gets ignored, and then when they die all that knowledge is lost.

    You see the same stuff when fresh new management with their MBAs still wet from the inkjet printer take over and get rid of stuff that’s been sitting for, in some cases, almost a century. You know, the stuff that is the only stuff that will fix the one machine the company relies on that is as old as the stuff. Seen it, seen a company fold because parts were tossed away against better judgement.

    As to whiz wheels and slip sticks, the world would be a better place if the children of all ages would know a little of the old ways before being allowed to use their phones and pads. It’s very common to have people working registers who have no idea how to break a $20 or provide correct change without the machines telling them to. Hmmm… Maybe there is something to the Matrix 4 after all…

    • Went to my family’s 100th reunion this year. So all is not lost. But, actually, it was my mother who caused much to be lost when we left WV in 1960. She had been very poor and didn’t want “old stuff”. So much was thrown away and replaced with fiber board covered with paper laminate.

  10. My dad flew for Riddle Airlines, which became Airlift International, from 1955 until it finally croaked it’s last in 1991. He had a case that weighed about a million pounds, that contained his slip sticks and whiz wheels, plus maps, charts, tables, and manuals. He carried it all over the world.

  11. Beans- Exactly!!!

    Pat- Ah yes, the brain bag! We all had them… which is why one arm is longer than the other…LOL

  12. I used a similar one that would fit in my shirt pocket right up till I retired in 2016.

  13. I think ‘computor’ for the device, because computer was still a job description

  14. Hey Old NFO;

    Dang; The kamakaze flag is a piece of history, Can’t believe that someone wanted to chunk it. Glad you “Saved it”.

  15. My wife’s father was a Marine. When he died, we helped clean their house. Much just got tossed into a giant dumpster without thought. But I looked for interesting stuff.

    Found an old military message pad. Partly used. Opened it. Used in 1942, on Guadalcanal. You could still read the carbon copies of messages, left in the pad. Easy for that piece of history to have gone to the landfill. Too easy to lose interesting historic artifacts.

    He never talked about what happened there. Just gave his daughter a book called “Starvation Island”. Now no one knows the importance of that battle,or how close it was. Just a few of us to whom history is real. We need these artifacts, to remember.

  16. I still have my E6B and know how to use it. I also have a couple of slide rules in my desk.
    I very much enjoy GPS navigation, but I never travel, air or ground, without paper maps and proficiency in using them.

  17. I have a Jepson whiz wheel my dad found while doing work at Ft. Bragg. No earthly idea how to use it, but I hang onto it anyway. I’m like that about old stuff.