Category Archives: Airplanes

Bad Software?

Sometime ago, I read of the software that flew, I believe, the F-16. Which is fairly old technology today. I have forgotten the number of lines of code but it was easily in the 100s of thousands, and probably over a million.

Which has to perform correct under every conceivable condition.

It looks like a top contender for the crash of the Lion Air in Indonesia may have been software. The plane was one of the latest versions of 737 and not in their fleet very long.

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A bit of good news

Seems the F-35 has flown over Iran – undetected. Amid news that the Air Force could not maintain their projected fleet because of projected maintenance costs – and would have to cut back by a third.

 

And being 7 years behind schedule with a seemingly runaway budget.

 

It is either going to become a weapons system that will lead the industry, or a boondoggle.

Let’s hope they can rein in those problems.

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Talk about tying the record

By lex

On February 28, 2006

 

I’ve been low before. Even lower over water, where it’s hard to hit things like mountains, hilltops and trees, etc, which have a tendency to jut up suddenly out of the dirt. On the other hand, it’s also safe to say that flying low over a flat and feartureless sea comes with its own set of hazards.

Which is why this picture evokes a reaction that shares a bit of humbled awe with a healthy slice of ”those guys are fricken’ crazy.”

talkAboutTyingTheRecord

 

Fortunately, according to the accompanying email:
Photography by Frans Dely/Aviationdimension.comEarly morning anglers are treated to the spectacle of four T6 Harvard Aircraft from The Flying Lions Aerobatic Team waterskiing across the Klipdrift Dam near Johannesburg South Africa.

Aircraft from The Flying Lions Aerobatic Team waterskiing across theKlipdrift Dam near Johannesburg South Africa.Lead by Scully Levin, with wingman Arnie Meneghelli, Stewart Lithgow and Ellis Levin, this renown airshow display team rehearse a sequence for the newly launched “Aviation Action” television program on Supersport.

Meneghelli from Academy Brushware, owner of the aircraft had this to say, “What we did today I believe is a world first. It illustrates that South African airshow pilots are amongst the best in the world”.

This unusual act, approved by the South African Civil Aviation Authority CAA), and supported by Castrol Aviation, was meticulously planned and took place under the watchfull eye of divers and paramedics that were on site.

Maybe it’s just me, but the idea of briefing an aerobatic stunt (in formation!) that requires on-scene divers just sort of sounds, you know: Nuts.

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Reno Air Races 2017

Over the years, I have accrued a number of nice memories of the Reno Air Races. I’ve met “Pappy” Boyington, Bob Hoover, and seen things that can’t be seen anywhere else.

I have a print I bought from Major Boyington signed – in 1984. I read his autobiography – he had a terrible time in the Japanese concentration camp (it should go without saying) and post war, an awful time. But he pulled through. He’s at Arlington, now.

One thing has changed – well, a number of things. For one, the “Unlimiteds” have become so fast the starter plane changed from a yellow Mustang – piloted by Bob Hoover, to a T-33 jet. They have an L-39 class now – that ubiquitous Czech trainer that the wealthy have embraced. That Merlin – stock was 1,500 hp, is over 3,500 now.

If you go there a pit pass is almost mandatory – you wander among all these magnificent planes.

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Unrestricted climb

By lex, on September 28th, 2007

Date: March, 1991

Place: Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona

Ride: TF-16N

It had been a long day. A buddy and I had flown three hops that day in the two-seat Viper, alternating front and back seats. We’d were going through the TOPGUN Adversary Course, the better to qualify us as bandits when we returned home to NAS Key West. Coming to the end of the course, the scars that the TOPGUN IP’s had inflicted at the beginning of the course were beginning to fade. Your humble scribe was starting to once again feel his oats.

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Fun At The Movies         

ItsAMadMadMadMadWorld

 

During the last 6 months or so I have become a regular visitor to our theater. While I have seen some recent ones, some memorable, some forgettable (using the Internet Lexicon YMMV) – the movies I mainly  like to see are the ones that have endured over time.

Part of this appreciation came from 2 friends, one of whom is an accomplished Hollywood Screenwriter, who have both given me an appreciation for classic Hollywood.

Never thought I could find pleasure in a movie made in 1928, at the end of the silent movies, but if you can find it view Show People , staring Marion Davies.

Marion stars as a poor naïve girl from Georgia, who comes out to Hollywood seeking fame and fortune.  She becomes a star and can laugh at herself in how it changed  her. The audience laughs right along with her almost 90 years later.

Truths are timeless.

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The Best of Neptunus Lex

LexMug

Preface

I came to know Lex through his writings. A longtime admirer of his, David Foster of Chicagoboyz.net, recommended a few of his favorite posts.

After reading the very first one, I was hooked. One could say that at that moment I became a Lexican. Some of Lex’s posts made you laugh and others made you think. He had the gift of showing people what life is like to serve on a carrier.

Until I read Lex, this old Army guy thought sailors had an easy life with clean, spacious accommodations and good food.  I just wondered if they were allowed to take their golf clubs while on a cruise.

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