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Topics - Sad Sam

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Engineering / How would you feel?
« on: August 09, 2017, 09:46:50 PM »
In the glory days, when 558 was a living breathing entity not an afterthought abandoned in a sewage farm, one of the threats used to extract money from the supporters (once the trust had worked out that "give us your money or the engineers will all be sacked" did not work too well) was "Give us your money or 558 will be sold to the United States!"

Given the current situation where the trust appears to be in total melt down (assets abandoned outside with no protection, fire sale of merchandise and spares inventory etc., no tangible progress on either ETNA or the temporary hangar) how would you feel if someone from the other side of the pond purchased 558 and flew her away?

As I see it the trust is a slow motion car crash.  For whatever reason they seem determined to destroy everything they achieved.  Perhaps if they just folded the trust there would have been some sort of penalty payable to the HLF or other creditors so they have decided to try and kill the thing off by suffocation, I know nothing but it seems bizarre to have something so great and then destroy it.  Perhaps this all some sort of brinksmanship with the HLF to persuade them to pay for ETNA, which I was told was paid for two years ago?

How would you feel if 558 was placed on the American F.A.A. register as an experimental aircraft?  She would flown to the States where she would be part of a privately funded collection, flown on the U.S. show scene and bought back over for a summer season once every two or three years.  The well healed (and those of us with a massive bucket list) would be able to go to the States to see our baby and there would be the chance of her coming back to reinvigorate the flagging European airshow scene.

Otherwise she can just stay where she is on the off chance that Roberts master plan comes off.

I am not saying that it could or would happen.  I just wonder how people would feel if it did...

Engineering / So that's it then?
« on: June 19, 2017, 06:42:26 PM »
Looking at UKARSE forum the feeding frenzy has started.

The news is that 558 will be stored outside from the end of the month.

What a great job the trust has made of this.  When we were made redundant the line was that the new hangar would be built by the end of this year and tours and events would start early in 2017.  Six months on and absolutely no sign of any hangar building type activity at Doncaster and our baby about to be chucked outside along with 163 and all the other stuff that is stored in No.1 hangar I guess.

As usual no word from the trust - they'll just keep quite and hope we don't notice.

I wonder how they will empty hangar 1?  It took four of us the best part of a month to move all the stuff from three hangar.  Now there is no-one left (as Taff has now started a new job at Waddington)  perhaps Andrew Edmonson will be getting his hands dirty...

What happens to 163 and all her spares?  At the moment the aircraft and most of the large components are in hangar 1.  If she is moved outside in the state she is now (engines, flying controls and panels removed in preparation for the major) the chances of any return to flight are remote.  The spares are in Delta court along with all the tons of Vulcan web store stock how long before the trust is ejected from that unit?  The spare engines are still in Coventry...

What a complete horlicks...

Aviation Waffle / Douglas C54 Skymaster at North Weald
« on: March 12, 2017, 05:03:00 PM »
There used to be two and now there is only one.

She's a game old bird, a genuine WW2 veteran and participant in the Berlin airlift.

She is up for sale on this web site.

They have a facebook page running and I noticed some one with vulcan to the sky club as their user name had liked some comments.

Some nice pics on there of the aircraft over her long and varied carrer.  It would be nice if her long life did not end up as baked bean tins in an Eping supermarket.

And yes this is another Bee in my Bonnet (to go along with the Mosquito, the Shackleton, the Canberra, the Gannett, the Walrus, the Blenheim, the Hunters and Just Jane) perhaps if they all come off I'll have my own airshow!

Watch this space.

Engineering / Engineering insights
« on: November 15, 2016, 03:50:09 PM »

I'm not sure if anyone ever looks on here any more but I'll give this a try anyway.

Ray, Taff and I are giving a series of talks in the hangar about how we have looked after 558.

I can't really talk for Taff and Ray but I'm going for a bit of self promotion here.

I have three talks prepared one on structures, one on the undercarriage and one on flying controls.

The talks last about two hours and take the form of a powerpoint and film show.

Lots of detail about what was involved with rectifying some well known faults on 558 over the last seven years and how I came to be involved.

The talk includes lunch and a guided tour afterwards when hopefully I'll be able to put the talk into context.

There was a time when a day with Taff, Ray or myself would have been sold out in a shot.  I don't know if there is a lack of interest in the engineering now or if people have just missed the link on the web page but we don't seem to have many takers (no-one wants to listen to Ray talk about his engines tomorrow)

We are getting lonely up here, come along and listen to what is involved with looking after a v bomber.

Aviation Waffle / Sherwood Ranger Build a plane project
« on: June 15, 2016, 09:38:12 PM »
If you have visited hangar 3 at Doncaster over the last year or so you may have noticed a small biplane taking shape in the shadow of 558's wings.

The aircraft is a Sherwood Ranger kit which is being assembled by a group of school students from Goole High School.

It has been interesting to watch the plane take shape and it's great that they are now very close to completion.

This last weekend they managed to get the aircraft outside for the first set of engine runs.

There was a nice little feature in this Tuesdays news letter about the project.

In the article there is a link to the Light Aircraft Company (TLAC) website.  TLAC are the company which manufactures the kit in Little Snoring in Norfolk.

As well as the feature on the Spirit of Goole there is a very nice article entitled "valuable donation sparks work on Spirit of Doncaster"  I am very excited about this as the spirit of Doncaster is one of my projects.  I have a group of students from Doncaster college and once we get through a small forest of paperwork we will have groups of Cadets from local ATC squadrons.  Together they will be building another Ranger kit which once they have completed it they will fly in and if they desire they will learn to fly themselves.

The students who have been involved so far are loving getting involved and as you would imagine the biggest inspiration is 558 in the background.

As the project progresses I will post updates on here to keep you informed.  There will also be regular updates on the Ranger in the news letter.

In the article there is the inevitable appeal for funding, the Ranger is self funding with no money being diverted from the Vulcan or Canberra.  Nothing in aviation is cheap but if you look at this as sponsoring the future of our hobby then I think it would be money well spent. 

The shares start at £10 and money donated to the Ranger goes directly into paying for the kit and tooling.

I am really looking forward to being involved with this and seeing the students and cadets getting as much out of aviation as I have.  This is the start of something big  ;D

Aviation Waffle / They just can't let go!
« on: May 01, 2016, 12:25:34 PM »
I see that even though 558 is no longer flying our biggest fans over on the UK airshow forum can not stop talking about us!

Seems that our good friend Mr. O'Hagan has crawled out from under the rock that he had hidden under to spout some more of particular version of hate and spite (mostly directed at Dr. Plemming)  maybe he should go back to football commentating, which he also thinks he is far more knowledgeable about.  His airshow commentary was good - I particularly liked his constant reference to dogs in cars.

Looking forward to the whole forum going into melt down in the near future.

I do wonder what sort of "Aviation Enthusiasts" they really are...

Book / Film / TV Reviews / The stupid "nodding presenter" shot
« on: April 19, 2016, 09:46:03 PM »
Just watching a program on "Yesterday" about the Yangtze river dam.

Well interesting.

They've just used the stupid "noding presenter" shot.

Every producer in television seems obliged to use this shot for every program.

Just watch, I guarantee anything on the telly at some point you will get the presenter gazing into the camera and "nodding" with a stupid look on his or her face which is meant to convey "I know just what you mean"

Very, very annoying!

Aviation Waffle / 5th March 1936
« on: March 05, 2016, 01:49:22 PM »
I went down to the Solent today expecting to see something similar to the flypast from Five years ago and ten years ago, which was basically a re-enactment of the original test flight.  Out of Eastleigh down the Itchen to Hythe, turn left, down the Solent to the Isle of wight 180 degree turn then Home for tea and cake.  ;D

What we got (eventually as the weather was a bit pants) was a good 10 minutes display over Woolston and the Dock Head, followed by a fairly low level departure in the direction of the Island with a very nice victory roll thrown in over Fawley.  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

The best Spitfire flypast ever...

Sorry about the language.

Engineering / Vulcan Engineering assistants
« on: March 01, 2016, 11:33:27 PM »
From the News letter.
"As Taff and the team begin work to replace one of XH558’s engines with one that has had a new gearbox fitted, it was good to welcome our first two ‘Vulcan Assistants’ who were able to help with the removal of some of the access panels on the aircraft among other jobs yesterday. The team welcomed Jack Pattison and Mark Norfolk, and from their obvious enthusiasm at the end of the day, the experience had been thoroughly enjoyable for them."

Just to fill in a few blanks and dispel some of the rumors and "doom and gloom" type feedback I've read on other forums and social media.

As well as removing the engine doors Jack and Mark carried out the majority of the "zone one" disconnects on Monday.  If you have ever seen the Vulcan with the engine doors open or removed that is all of the pipe work, ducting, control rods and intake make up pieces inside the forward door.  They both carried out all of the work with ample opportunity to get personal mementos of their day out (558 is an old lady, she bites and leaks - sorry about that)  The only part of the zone 1 disconnect they did not complete was the alternator removal, so in the finest traditions of the service we let Mike and Spencer do that today before they got on with the zone 2 disconnects.

So far the feedback has been excellent with all four of the guys saying they would happily come back for more.

To clear up any misunderstanding.  The assistants are not coming in to take over from the "Vulcan Scrubbers" (who are still more than welcome to contact me via pm on here whenever they want to come in) they will be working with the engineering team carrying out whatever task the team has scheduled for that day.  For the next two weeks this means if you come in to the hangar you will be carrying out an engine change on 558.  As far as possible we let you carry out the work in accordance with the service procedures (if it gets too difficult we may take over but the general idea is that you get the experience) you will then sign for the task you have carried out, we will oversign you and we will give you a copy of the paper work and a certificate as mementos.  Once the engine change is complete there will be other scheduled tasks to complete and will do our best to ensure that you have as interesting day as possible.

I look forward to meeting up with the rest of the assistants and hope you all have a great time - I have had for the last 35 years  ;)

Aviation Waffle / Aviation Heritage in safe hands....
« on: February 15, 2016, 09:05:19 PM »
I was bouncing around looking for something interesting...

I typed in "Supermarine heritage" and this was the first image.

I know some people will not be able to follow the link so for clarity the caption reads:-
"RIAT 2015 Heritage: Supermarine Spitfire
The images on this site are the property of BAE Systems (Copyright © 2016 BAE Systems. All rights reserved) All rights reserved unless otherwise stated and are made available for editorial and personal use. They may not be changed or combined with other images in any manner without prior written consent of BAE Systems or the copyright owner."

I've added the bold.

If you can't see the image it's a very nice picture of another 1930's monoplane fighter (but without elliptical wings or a bubble canopy)

Our heritage in safe hands?

Aviation Waffle / Classic Air Force Announcement
« on: January 31, 2016, 05:13:55 PM »
Spotted this link on UKAirShow forum.

Nice way to say goodbye to all their supporters.

They have been great.

Aviation Waffle / Missing the leaping heap
« on: March 25, 2014, 08:43:20 PM »
I am looking back through Google to try and identify "My" harrier GR7.

I am back to December 2010 and I found a link to this amusing tail from one of the "Tin Kickers"

The Royal Engineers were "well-ard" as the guy says they got to the site about a week before we did and worked flat out (usually fully tactical)

I often wondered what they made of us when we rolled up - not too much judging by this!  I reckon every fourth lorry must have been full of Herforder beer.

A friend of mine in Southampton is an ex 2 para RE - his description of the "tin kickers" is nearly as disdainful as their description of the RAF regiment.  But after he spent a week trying to lay some tin in the Falklands he was very glad to see them. turn up like something from a WW2 comic.

The whole thing with the tin in a field was never going to happen.  You can just imagine the conversation in some Russian reconnaissance center "Ivan, why is there lots of tin in that field?"  "Don't know comrade, bomb the hell out of it anyway"

The RE had a much better plan that involved hiding the jets in supermarkets!

Happy days.

As I continue my search for "Juliet" I'll stick some more stuff on here.

Found this on the web.

Trouble is the early batch of GR 5's & 7's the serial was painted on the rear fuselage behind the hot nozzles.  You couldn't read the number when you were stood next to it let alone from a grainy shot on the internet 30 years later.  We only knew the jets by their letters.

Ways To Raise Funding / Quiz night in Swindon. Wednesday 12th February 2014
« on: February 10, 2014, 09:23:52 PM »
Short notice this I'm afraid for reasons not entirely beyond my control.

There will be a quiz night is from 8 pm next Wednesday , at the Fox &Hounds , High St , Haydon Wick , Swindon , SN251HX

The general format is as per normal for a pub quiz , but there will be 10 Vulcan , and 10 general aviation questions.

The quiz is being organized to raise funds for 558.  All proceeds will be DOUBLED  by Barclays Bank!!!

Sadly there is only space for the  regular 5/6 teams of locals , plus possibly enough space for 6 teams of 4 of Vulcan enthusiasts.

It may be easiest if any bomber boys email me on ( note the "e" in scarey ---Colins wife can't spell !)  Colin will try to co-ordinate the arrangements so that we don't get inundated with coach loads of enthusiasts trying to screw Barclays Bank out of lots of dosh.

If there is enough interest , other quiz nights can be organized !

By the way, the doubling of funds raised for charity work is standard practice for Barclays Bank . ---I can try to get details of how it works for you if you are not already aware of how it works.   

I know it's short notice, I've known about the quiz for a while but have failed to generate the publicity I promised.  It would be nice if anyone local could find their way over to see Colin on Wednesday night.  I can recommend the pub and Colin is always good for a laugh.

Engineering / Time lapse of seat and canopy fit
« on: December 20, 2013, 06:44:15 PM »
Hi all,

Phil has been hard at it again and has edited another set of my pictures this time of the seat and canopy fit.

Just in case you were wondering I sent him over 1200 pictures (to make just over 2 minutes of video!)

Thanks Phil (and of course Ray and Brownie who helped fit the lid  ;))

Edited to add the link (which I'm sure I put in there the first time!)

General Photography Discussion / Timelapse photography
« on: December 16, 2013, 10:55:36 PM »
I've got a new toy!

I love all those time lapse films you get on the telly and you tube so I bought myself a little gizmo to take thousands of pictures.  Then I bought a spare battery for the camera as it turns out if you leave the camera running all day the things eats electricity!

So far I've got over 12,000 pictures (mostly of not very much going on!)

Some interesting experiments with the light in the hangar as well.

Any way the idea is I will be able to do a timelapse of Mod 2221 as it is completed.

Fonseca has kindly agreed to edit the pictures for me.  Here is the results of the first batch (where something did happen) posted by Ian onto u-tube.

I see the trolls have already had a go - play nicely when you reply!  By the way who are "the owners" (post No.5)

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