One of my old COs flew Spads… Including training for their nuclear (one way) mission of loft bombing and running like hell…

Radial Starting (3350 engine on an A-1H)

Be sure you drain both the sumps. (You can fill your Zippo lighter while you do this)
Look out the left side of the oily cockpit canopy and notice a very nervous person holding a huge fire bottle. Nod to this person.
1.  Crack throttle about one-quarter of an inch. 
2.  Battery on 
3.  Mags on 
4.  Fuel boost on 
5.  Hit starter button (The four-bladed 13′ 6′ prop will start a slow turn) 
6.  8 blades later, begin to bounce your finger on top of the primer button. 
a.  This act requires finesse and style. It is much like a ballet performance. The engine must be seduced and caressed into starting.
7.  Act one will begin: Belching, banging, rattling, backfiring, sputtering, flame and black smoke from the exhaust shooting out about three feet. (Fire bottle person is very pale and has the nozzle at the ready position) 
8.  When the engine begins to “catch” on the primer. Move the mixture to full rich. 
The flames from the exhaust will stop and white smoke will come out. (Fire bottle guy relaxes a bit) You will hear a wonderful throaty roar that is like music to the ears.. 
a. Enjoy the macho smell of engine oil, hydraulic fluid, and pilot sweat.
9.  Immediately check the oil pressure and hydraulic gages. 
10. The entire aircraft is now shaking and shuddering from the torque of the engine and RPM of the prop. 
a.  The engine is an 18 cylinder R-3350 that develops 2,700 HP.
11. Close cowl flaps to warm up the engine for taxi. 
12. Once you glance around at about 300 levers, gauges and gadgets, call the tower to taxi to the duty runway.

Take off in the AD-6
1.     Check both magnetos
2.     Exercise the prop pitch
3.     Cowl flaps open.
4.     Check oil temp and pressure.
5.     Crank 1.5 degrees right rudder trim to help your right leg with the torque on takeoff.
6.     Tell the tower you are ready for the duty runway. 
7.     Line the bird up and lock the tail wheel for sure. 
8.     Add power slowly because the plane (with the torque of the monster prop and engine power definitely wants to go left). 
9.      NEVER add full power suddenly! There is not enough rudder in the entire world to hold it straight. 
10.     Add more power and shove in right rudder till your leg begins to tremble. 
11.     Expect banging, belching and an occasional manly fart as you roar down the runway at full power. 
        (I have found that the engine can make similar noises)
12.     Lift the tail and when it “feels right” pull back gently on the stick to get off the ground. 
13.     Gear up 
14.     Adjust the throttle for climb setting 
15.     Ease the prop back to climb RPM 
16.     Close cowl flaps and keep an eye on the cylinder head temp. 
17.     Adjust the power as needed as you climb higher or turn on the supercharger. 

 Flying with the round engine.
1.      Once you reach altitude which isn’t very! high (about 8000 feet) you reduce the throttle and prop to cruise settings. 
2.      The next fun thing is to pull back the mixture control until the engine just about quits. Then ease it forward a bit and this is the best mixture.. 
3.      While cruising the engine sounds like it might blow or quit at any time This keeps you occupied scanning engine gauges for the least hint of trouble. 
4.      Moving various levers around to coax a more consistent sound from the engine concentrates the mind wonderfully. 
5      At night or over water a radial engine makes noises you have never heard before. 
6.      Looking out of the front of the cockpit the clouds are beautiful because they are slightly blurred from the oil on the cockpit canopy. 
7.      Seeing lightning in the clouds ahead increases the pucker factor by about 10. 
a.  You can’t fly high enough to get over them and if you try and get under the clouds—-you will die in turbulence. 
b.  You tie down everything in the cockpit that isn’t already secured, get a good grip on the stick, turn on the deicers, tighten and lock your shoulder straps and hang on. 
c.  You then have a ride to exceed any “terror” ride in any amusement park ever built. You discover the plane can actually fly sidewise while inverted.
8.      Once through the weather, you call ATC and in a calm deep voice advise them that there is slight turbulence on your route. 
9.      You then scan your aircraft to see if all the major parts are still attached. This includes any popped rivets. 
10.     Do the controls still work? Are the gauges and levers still in proper limits? 
11.     These being done you fumble for the relief tube because you desperately need it. (Be careful with your lower flight suit zipper)

The jet engine and aircraft

Start a jet
1. Fuel boost on. 
2.  Hit the start button 
3.  When the JPT starts to move, ease the throttle forward. 
4.  The fire bottle person is standing at the back of the plane and has no idea what is going on. 
5.  The engine lights off—and— 
6. That’s about it.

Take off in the jet
1.  Lower flaps 
2.  Tell the tower you are ready for takeoff. 
3.  Roll on to the duty runway while adding 100% power. 
4.  Tricycle gear—no tail to drag—no torque to contend with. 
5.  At some exact airspeed, you lift off the runway. 
6.  Gear up 
7.  Milk up the flaps and fly. 
8. Leave the power at 100%

Flying the jet
1.  Climb at 100% 
2.  Cruise at 100% 
3.  It is silent in the plane. 
4.  You can’t see clouds because you are so far above them. 
5.  You look down and see lightning in some clouds below and pity some poor fool that may have to fly through that mess. 
6.  The jet plane is air conditioned!! Round engines are definitely not. If you fly in tropical areas, this cannot be stressed enough. 
7.  There is not much to do in a jet, so you eat your flight lunch at your leisure. 
8.  Few gauges to look at and no levers to adjust. This leaves you doodling on your kneeboard. 
9. Some call girlfriends on their cell phones: “Guess where I am etc”

My old CO said the worst problem he ever had in a Spad was the relief tube being blocked on a six hour mission… 😀

NRA Annual Meeting…

Heading for Indy tomorrow for the NRA Annual Meeting and floorshow… 😉

If you have something you want me to look at/report on, leave the specifics in comments and I’ll do my best to locate the item and give you my thoughts on it.


It’s also a chance to catch up with friends, have at least one good meal, and get my exercise for the week… LOL

As far as I know right now, we don’t have any blogger specific get togethers planned, but if something pops up, I’ll post the info when I get it.

Words, they mean things…

The dems obviously get their talking points emailed every morning, and probably anytime ‘something’ comes up…

Re the bombings in Sri Lanka, according to the left, “Somebody did something to somebody.”

Easter worshipers and tourists is the word they ALL used, not a single mention of Christians, nor of the bombing by muslim extremists… Sigh…

Daily Wire has an interesting comparison, HERE of this attack vs. the comments from the NZ attack last month…

Over 4000 Christians were killed last year by terrorists, and a number of churches world-wide were burned down or attempted to be burned last year also. Open Doors UK, HERE, has some interesting data, trends, and links to terrorism against Christians.

I really don’t understand the dem’s/liberal’s/left’s refusal to say Christian or Muslim extremist…




Happy Easter!!!

Easter, also known as Resurrection Sunday, celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Christians believe that Jesus was crucified on Good Friday, and rose from the dead after three days on Easter Sunday. Easter Sunday marks the end of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting, prayer and penance, and is followed by a 50-day period called Eastertide, which ends with Pentecost Sunday.

The celebration of the resurrection of Jesus is observed as an Easter Vigil (also known as Paschal Vigil) in Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran and some Anglican churches, and “Sunrise Service” in many Protestant churches. Borrowing from the Jewish tradition, a liturgical day begins at sunset, and thus the Easter Vigil begins between sunset on Holy Saturday and sunrise on Easter Sunday. The Easter Vigil service moves from darkness to light, symbolically re-enacting the Easter story of Jesus rising from the dead. The service begins outside the church where the priest lights and blesses a fire.

Various Paschal Candles circa 2008 WaxArtStudio [Public domain]

A Paschal candle, representing the Risen Christ, is lit from that fire. The candle is processed through the church, and the Exsultet, Easter proclamation, is sung. Passages from the Bible are read, the Gloria and Alleluia are sung, and the Eucharist (or Holy Communion) is celebrated. In many churches, this is also a time when new members are baptized into the Church in accordance with ancient tradition. The “Sunrise Service” is similar, but held outside early in the morning on Easter Sunday, so that attendants can see the sun rise.

And it is celebrated across many faiths in many countries…  Enjoy the day, regardless of your religious preference!


Rather than a rant on the current BS going on, I give you humor…

Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard when he lives in the jungle without a razor?

Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are dead?

Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they know we obviously don’t have the money to pay them?

Why did Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

Whose idea was it to put an ‘S’ in the word ‘lisp’?

What is the speed of darkness?

Why is it that people say they ‘slept like a baby’ when babies wake up every two hours?

If the temperature is zero outside today and it’s going to be twice as cold tomorrow, how cold will it be?

Do married people live longer than single ones or does it only seem longer?

How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?

Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?

Did you ever stop and wonder…….

Who was the first person to look at a cow and say, ‘I think I’ll squeeze
these pink dangly things here, and drink whatever comes out?’

Who was the first person to say, ‘See that chicken there… I’m gonna eat the next thing that comes outta it’s ass.’

Why is there a light in the fridge and not in the freezer?

Why do people point to their wrist when asking for the time, but don’t point to their ass when they ask where the bathroom is?

Why does your Gynaecologist leave the room when you get undressed when they know they are going to look up there anyway?

Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They’re both dogs !

If quizzes are quizzical, what are tests?

If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, then what is baby oil made from?

If electricity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?

Why do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune?

Stop singing and read on……

Do illiterate people really get to enjoy Alphabet Soup?

Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog’s face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him on a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?

Does pushing the elevator button more than once make it arrive faster?

Do you ever wonder why you gave me your e-mail address in the first place?

And just for S&Gs…

One night a guy takes his girlfriend home. As they are about to kiss each other goodnight at the front door, the guy starts feeling a little horny.

With an air of confidence, he leans with his hand against the wall and smiling, he says to her, “Honey, would you have sex with me?”

Horrified, she replies, “Are you mad? My parents will see us!”

“Oh come on! Who’s gonna see us at this hour?” he asks, grinning at her.

“No, please. Can you imagine if we get caught?”

“Oh come on! There’s nobody around, they’re all sleeping!” >> “No way. It’s just too risky!”

“Oh please, please, I love you so much!”

“No, no, and no. I love you too, but I just can’t!”

“Oh yes you can. Please?”

“No, no. I just can’t”

“I’m begging you…”

Out of the blue, the light on the stairs goes on, and the girl’s older sister shows up in her pajamas, hair disheveled, and in a sleepy voice, she says: “Dad says to go ahead and have sex with him, or I can do it… or if need be mom says she can come down herself and do it. But for God’s sake, tell him to take his hand off the intercom!”

Let the spin begin…

First, you can actually get an read the report for yourself, HERE.

The dems, who were counting on the Mueller report to bury the president didn’t get what they wanted on collusion, so now they want to go after him on ‘obstruction’ to the dems ‘standard’ of the word…

Looks like they are determined to kill this presidency, either by death by 1000 paper cuts, 1000 subpoenas, or causing the president to have a stroke or a heart attack.

Go read it and make up your own minds…

Oh and calling for the AG to resign? Where were the calls for Holder or Lynch to do the same after they came out as Obummer’s ‘wingmen’???

Just askin’


We were trying to decide on dinner last night and somebody said Catfish!

Then in became where…

“Well, there’s this little place just across the Red… in Oklahoma…

45 miles and an hour later, we pull in to this little place that doesn’t even have a sign outside.

There were maybe eight cars outside when we pulled up, so we got seated immediately! 🙂

Having eaten at a few fish camps over the years, I looked at the menu and saw full and half orders, which is as they say, a clue! I got the 1/2 order of shrimp and catfish, Lawdog got a half order of catfish, and AEpilot Jim got the FULL order platter…

And fried pickles, and they brought TWO baskets of hush puppies. The coleslaw was excellent, with a hint of garlic, and we all agreed the fish was going to be good!

The meal came, and it was delicious as we’d heard. Fish camp style, slim fillets cooked perfectly, and HOT when they came out with the fries. The tartar sauce was definitely homemade, and plenty of it.

Lawdog and I barely finished our 1/2 orders, and Jim actually had to get a takeout! As we were leaving there were at least six couples waiting inside, and probably five or six more outside or sitting in their trucks, and I counted forty vehicles filling the small parking lot.

On the way back we were laughing about it being ‘Texas close’, probably ‘only’ drawing from about a 60 mile radius.  We collectively decided we would be back, and we’ll be bringing friends, but we’re gonna get there EARLY! 🙂

This morning I’m sleeping off the food coma from last night… LOL

One good meal…

I have a ‘rule’ that I get one good meal on every trip, this one was BBQ and my second favorite place…

I always get the brisket plate, and it’s FILLING! And as good as ever!!!Today, slogging back home. Trip was semi-productive, we’ll see what comes out of it later. Real blogging will resume tomorrow.

Little road trip…

Had to go down to Austin for a couple of meetings, so made the obligatory stop at the Texas Rangers Museum. Two ‘new’ things caught my eye…

This 44 special was carried by CAPT Frank Probst, Company C,  from 1945 into the 1960s. Anybody else notice the resemblance to the Fitz Special work on the trigger guard?

And this one is a REAL Bowie knife, presented to William Lacey after his Ranger service in the 1830s. The knife is attributed to Rezin Bowie!

And there was the obligatory stop at Bucee’s. You really have to see it to believe it. It’s a MEGA convenience store… It is huge! This is the ‘short’ side of the building… And has the cleanest restrooms I’ve ever seen!

There were three bus loads of kids in there, and you don’t even see them… This pic was down the length of the store, and I was probably 20 yards from the back end of the store!!!

I’ll be off to my meetings by the time you read this. Have a good day!