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(Jalopnik)   Five planes that had it in for their pilots. Come for the flying nuclear reactor, stay for the Thunderscreech   (jalopnik.com) divider line 113
    More: Scary, Thunderscreech, nuclear reactors, strategic bombers  
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9200 clicks; posted to Geek » on 15 Jun 2013 at 6:05 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-06-15 02:53:57 PM  
One of the thunderscreeches was just abandoned at Meadows field airport by the Navy because nobody wanted to fly it back to Edwards. the airpor asked them to take it back or pa storage. They ignored requests so  Meadows field had it mounted on a pylon out front with an electric motor slowly spinnng its prop for 15 or 20 years as a decoration  until the gummint seized it back to put in some museum.


cdn-www.airliners.net
 
2013-06-15 02:58:09 PM  
farm9.staticflickr.com

It got less shiny over time
 
2013-06-15 04:39:04 PM  
One A-4 pilot crashed 2 in flight training and another 2 on active duty and had a fifth one shot from under him in Vietnam.  The only reason he did not wash out after crashing 2 in flight school was the fact that his father and grandfather each were 4 star admirals.
The planestatic.ddmcdn.com
The pilotfoolsandfanatics.com
 
2013-06-15 05:07:51 PM  

teto85: One A-4 pilot crashed 2 in flight training and another 2 on active duty and had a fifth one shot from under him in Vietnam.  The only reason he did not wash out after crashing 2 in flight school was the fact that his father and grandfather each were 4 star admirals.
The plane[static.ddmcdn.com image 400x208]
The pilot[foolsandfanatics.com image 539x340]


how DARE YOU suggest that AMERICAN HERO, that WOUNDED WARRIOR and BRAVE P.O.W. career was any thing LESS THAN HONORABLE!?

/amahdoinright?
 
2013-06-15 05:26:52 PM  
This list useless without the Boeing "Screamliner."

/Amarite?
 
2013-06-15 05:30:12 PM  
upload.wikimedia.org

Catch a falling Starfighter
put it in the pocket of your jeans
you can use it as a cigarette lighter
or as an opener for a can of beans
 
2013-06-15 05:45:53 PM  
Good Idea: Nuclear power provides clean and virtually limitless energy, with the latter attribute proving especially important for strategic bombers. Back in the Cold War, Strategic Air Command planes of the United States Air Force would fly in circles around the Arctic, waiting for their doomsday orders to bomb the Soviet Union. With a nuclear reactor on board, they could potentially stay on station for weeks or even months.

I think you lost the environmentalists with that statement

Science doesnt matter to a lot of people.

OMG THE NUCLEAR BOOGYMAN fear drives people insane
 
2013-06-15 06:19:53 PM  
I commend the article's creators for using a picture of an actual Zero instead of one of the many copies.
 
2013-06-15 06:20:52 PM  
TFA: Just a few hits from the guns in a Hellcat would make the Zero explode

The Hellcat went into action almost two years after Pearl Harbor.

The Zero was one of the best combat planes in history. For its day. Which did not last long.

But the design was great in its day.
 
2013-06-15 06:23:26 PM  
The B-36 looks like a WWII bomber.

Until you see it next to a B-29.

aerospacehistorian.files.wordpress.com
 
2013-06-15 06:24:16 PM  
The inclusion of the Zero on this list seems more than a tad unfair.  It was an outstanding fighter in its day, but back then aviation tech was moving very rapidly.  The Japanese should have retired it far sooner.
 
2013-06-15 06:25:46 PM  
img.gawkerassets.com

I had a toy version of this one when I was a kid.
 
2013-06-15 06:30:43 PM  

cman: Science doesnt matter to a lot of people.

OMG THE NUCLEAR BOOGYMAN fear drives people insane


You're saying opposition to nuclear powered airplanes is insanity.

Please tell us more about nuclear-powered airplanes. That sounds interesting.
 
2013-06-15 06:42:22 PM  

jaytkay: The B-36 looks like a WWII bomber.

Until you see it next to a B-29.


Well, technically she kinda was. It was designed to be able to bomb Germany from bases in the US in the event that Britain was conquered. It just took longer than the war to fully develope.
 
2013-06-15 06:45:43 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: The inclusion of the Zero on this list seems more than a tad unfair.  It was an outstanding fighter in its day, but back then aviation tech was moving very rapidly.  The Japanese should have retired it far sooner.


Top level meddling was responsible for the Zero staying active for so long.  That and a lack of available resources.

The aerodynamics on Japanese planes were superb, they were all just under-powered and under-armored in the war.  With proper fuel for the engine it was originally equipped with, KI-84 could keep up with any allied plane.  Even with the subpar fuel available, it could out dogfight any of them.  It's probably a good thing it arrived too late to affect the war much.
 
2013-06-15 06:50:18 PM  
...Let us take a look at this pilots' nightmare - the Heinkel He162:

upload.wikimedia.org

Made mostly from wood (and accordingly GLUED) together, it was intended to be flown by teenagers with approximately 8-10 hours in the cockpit.  It did manage to kill its first test pilot when the glue failed, It had an endurance time of less than 30 minutes at cruise speed, far less if the pilot wanted to, you know, go fast.  One squadron actually got the damned things, and knocked down ONE British aircraft in the six weeks it was in service.  At least 13 of the He162s were lost in that six weeks - two of which fell to enemy aircraft.  The other 11 went down due to engine failures (MTBF for its engine was somewhere around four hours under ideal conditions, much less as the Luftwaffe disintegrated) or structural failures.  One more would go down after the war, taking its RAF test pilot with it due to a - wait for it - structural failure.

Opposing Viewpoint:  Eric Brown, one of the greatest British test pilots, swore the plane was never as bad as its reputation, but you had to be a highly skilled pilot to do it.
 
2013-06-15 06:55:39 PM  
I flew the X-29 forward-swept wing simulator when I was in HS.  They set me up on the standard landing approach pattern.

I went from 3000 feet to -30 feet in about 6 seconds...
 
2013-06-15 07:05:01 PM  

jaytkay: TFA: Just a few hits from the guns in a Hellcat would make the Zero explode

The Hellcat went into action almost two years after Pearl Harbor.

The Zero was one of the best combat planes in history. For its day. Which did not last long.

But the design was great in its day.


Zafler: Fish in a Barrel: The inclusion of the Zero on this list seems more than a tad unfair.  It was an outstanding fighter in its day, but back then aviation tech was moving very rapidly.  The Japanese should have retired it far sooner.

Top level meddling was responsible for the Zero staying active for so long.  That and a lack of available resources.

The aerodynamics on Japanese planes were superb, they were all just under-powered and under-armored in the war.  With proper fuel for the engine it was originally equipped with, KI-84 could keep up with any allied plane.  Even with the subpar fuel available, it could out dogfight any of them.  It's probably a good thing it arrived too late to affect the war much.


Two good posts.  The Zero was a more than adequate fighter for it's day.  A little more horsepower, self sealing tanks, and more than 60 rounds per cannon would have made life a great deal more difficult for the Navy's Wildcats.

The Hellcat and Corsair aren't fair comparisons.  They were much later designs.

AtlanticCoast63: Opposing Viewpoint: Eric Brown, one of the greatest British test pilots, swore the plane was never as bad as its reputation, but you had to be a highly skilled pilot to do it.


I've always liked the 162.  If they'd gone into service a year or even six months eariler, it and the 262 would have made for a trememdous high tech/low tech interceptor mix.
 
2013-06-15 07:09:11 PM  

FrancoFile: I flew the X-29 forward-swept wing simulator when I was in HS.  They set me up on the standard landing approach pattern.

I went from 3000 feet to -30 feet in about 6 seconds...


It's a plane, not a shovel, dude.
 
2013-06-15 07:12:12 PM  
So it doesn't quite fit the article, but I always thought this one was an accident waiting to happen.

It's a Dash 7. the stuff hanging from it is part of a ground penetraing radar. When I worked at MSP, I saw it come in to clear customs. They said they were heading down to the southwest to do a survey for water.


cdn-www.airliners.net
 
2013-06-15 07:13:58 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: FrancoFile: I flew the X-29 forward-swept wing simulator when I was in HS.  They set me up on the standard landing approach pattern.

I went from 3000 feet to -30 feet in about 6 seconds...

It's a plane, not a shovel, dude.


Tell that to the stick.  Throttle back a touch, nose just under the artificial horizon, BAM!!!
 
2013-06-15 07:16:06 PM  

Mr_Juche: It's a Dash 7. the stuff hanging from it is part of a ground penetraing radar.


Rotating props. Loose cables hanging in front of those props.

What could possibly go wrong?
 
2013-06-15 07:17:13 PM  

JustGetItRight: I've always liked the 162.  If they'd gone into service a year or even six months eariler, it and the 262 would have made for a trememdous high tech/low tech interceptor mix.


Another example of top level meddling farking everything up.  Hitler wanted to make it a ground attack aircraft (I think that's what it was), and tried to push them to do so, delaying deployment significantly.
 
2013-06-15 07:17:21 PM  
There's always the ME-163.  A glider fighter/interceptor boosted to operating altitude by a rocket motor fueled with hydrazine and hydrogen peroxide.  The fuels were so reactive that the smallest leak would cause the plane to explode, and so corrosive that the pilots (and anyone else who got near the plane) had to wear protective gear.
 
2013-06-15 07:35:21 PM  
When we gave the Germans the F-104 their joke was that the best way to obtain your very own F-104 was to buy a parcel near the runway and wait.
 
2013-06-15 07:37:25 PM  

Therion: [upload.wikimedia.org image 300x192]

Catch a falling Starfighter
put it in the pocket of your jeans
you can use it as a cigarette lighter
or as an opener for a can of beans


He hee.  I hadn't heard that one.
 
2013-06-15 07:38:53 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: The inclusion of the Zero on this list seems more than a tad unfair.  It was an outstanding fighter in its day, but back then aviation tech was moving very rapidly.  The Japanese should have retired it far sooner.


Agreed, especially considering the F-104.  But to be fair most of the F-104's problems were related to going really really fast or going really really slow.
 
2013-06-15 07:44:19 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Therion: [upload.wikimedia.org image 300x192]

Catch a falling Starfighter
put it in the pocket of your jeans
you can use it as a cigarette lighter
or as an opener for a can of beans

He hee.  I hadn't heard that one.


http://youtu.be/Jd0CbIwRd1Q

Captain Lockheed and the Starfighters (Hawkwind)

(sorry, phone linky)
 
2013-06-15 07:45:41 PM  

Therion: Catch a falling Starfighter


Most boring MST3K episode ever.

As for planes trying to kill pilots I always think of this one:
upload.wikimedia.org
Rocket propelled and it ejected it's landing gear upon takeoff.
 
2013-06-15 08:16:00 PM  

Cerebral Knievel: how DARE YOU suggest that AMERICAN HERO, that WOUNDED WARRIOR and BRAVE P.O.W. career was any thing LESS THAN HONORABLE!?


He can still be honorable.  He didn't crash on purpose, he crashed because he wasn't a very good pilot.
 
2013-06-15 08:18:22 PM  

jaytkay: cman: Science doesnt matter to a lot of people.

OMG THE NUCLEAR BOOGYMAN fear drives people insane

You're saying opposition to nuclear powered airplanes is insanity.

Please tell us more about nuclear-powered airplanes. That sounds interesting.


The "other thing" that John F. Kennedy was talking about in the "We will go to the moon..." speech was the Rover nuclear-power rocket.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Rover

A video of the Rover nuclear rocket engine testing  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmxPRCyR-Co
 
2013-06-15 08:23:41 PM  
Convair X-6
i.imgur.com
i.imgur.com
The NB-36H Crusader, flying nuclear reactor testbed. The reactor was eventually supposed to power the engines, but that never happened.

The Soviets had a similar project of their own.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tupolev_Tu-119
i.imgur.com
 
2013-06-15 08:25:01 PM  

jaytkay: cman: Science doesnt matter to a lot of people.

OMG THE NUCLEAR BOOGYMAN fear drives people insane

You're saying opposition to nuclear powered airplanes is insanity.

Please tell us more about nuclear-powered airplanes. That sounds interesting.


My apologies, I should have been more specific.

I was speaking about the authors statement that nuclear power is a clean and safe energy, hence losing environmentalists.
 
2013-06-15 08:44:25 PM  

cman: jaytkay: cman: Science doesnt matter to a lot of people.

OMG THE NUCLEAR BOOGYMAN fear drives people insane

You're saying opposition to nuclear powered airplanes is insanity.

Please tell us more about nuclear-powered airplanes. That sounds interesting.

My apologies, I should have been more specific.

I was speaking about the authors statement that nuclear power is a clean and safe energy, hence losing environmentalists.


Roger, got it thank you.

As a far-left environmentalist, I concur - nuclear power is a good idea. Coal and oil are more harmful.
 
2013-06-15 08:46:50 PM  
So, about the nuclear bomber:

You can have a plane that has a normally-fueled engine, that has to land on a pretty regular basis

OR

You can have a nuclear-fueled bomber that can fly for months.  BUT it needs a small squadron of planes following it, all burning fuel.  Where are you saving anything?  You are going to either have to land the nuclear one with its tender planes when they run out of fuel, or you will have to keep sending more planes out to replace them.  Wouldn't it just be easier and cheaper to build a couple more conventional bombers and put them in a rota.  Sounds like LeMay's brand of farktard stupidity at work.

Plus, can you imagine being the poor crew stuck aboard this farker?  10-1 says it would have been up for less than three weeks before one of the pilots just straight-out power-dived the sucker, while the rest of the crew cheered him on.
 
2013-06-15 08:54:09 PM  
Uhh, the Gee-Bee DID kill everyone who flew it (except one.)
 
2013-06-15 09:09:50 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: There's always the ME-163.  A glider fighter/interceptor boosted to operating altitude by a rocket motor fueled with hydrazine and hydrogen peroxide.  The fuels were so reactive that the smallest leak would cause the plane to explode, and so corrosive that the pilots (and anyone else who got near the plane) had to wear protective gear.


That's the one I thought of. When I was about 8, I saw one in a museum, and my dad explained how it worked. I loudly said "those silly Germans!" and he told me not to talk like that and tried not to laugh.


But yeah, hypergolic fuels and a fuel system prone to cracking. Not a great combo.


Mr_Juche: So it doesn't quite fit the article, but I always thought this one was an accident waiting to happen.

It's a Dash 7. the stuff hanging from it is part of a ground penetraing radar. When I worked at MSP, I saw it come in to clear customs. They said they were heading down to the southwest to do a survey for water.


[cdn-www.airliners.net image 640x439]



Friend of mine flies that thing. That sensor rig is weird looking, but it's very well engineered and isn't going anywhere.
 
2013-06-15 09:10:55 PM  
Man, the new commenting system sucks. Where did all those spaces come from?
 
2013-06-15 09:13:31 PM  
Don't give me a P-39
With its engine mounted behind.
It will tumble and roll
And dig a big hole.
Don't give me a P-39.

/I keed. She's a wonderful plane.

//Just hate the stupid car-door design for the pilot to enter and exit.

///Hard to open a front-hinged door to bail out if you're going down in flames or tumbling out of control.
 
2013-06-15 09:18:15 PM  
The Zero a bad plane? Blasphemy!  It was damn near immortal at the start of hostilities.  The article would have been much better off with something like the LAGG-3 "guaranteed varnished coffin" or perhaps the Curtiss SB2C which, while it had some value, was known as the Son of a Biatch, 2nd class.  There were dozens of WWII planes that could have made it on this list.  The Zero was not one of them.
 
2013-06-15 09:21:46 PM  

phalamir: So, about the nuclear bomber:

You can have a plane that has a normally-fueled engine, that has to land on a pretty regular basis

OR

You can have a nuclear-fueled bomber that can fly for months.  BUT it needs a small squadron of planes following it, all burning fuel.  Where are you saving anything?  You are going to either have to land the nuclear one with its tender planes when they run out of fuel, or you will have to keep sending more planes out to replace them.  Wouldn't it just be easier and cheaper to build a couple more conventional bombers and put them in a rota.  Sounds like LeMay's brand of farktard stupidity at work.

Plus, can you imagine being the poor crew stuck aboard this farker?  10-1 says it would have been up for less than three weeks before one of the pilots just straight-out power-dived the sucker, while the rest of the crew cheered him on.


Not to mention the amount of supplies needed by the crew for a multi-month flight. Between that and the weight of the reactor itself, I'd be surprised if it could lift off at all.
 
2013-06-15 09:24:48 PM  
Since this seems like a plane nerd thread, I should point out that the Hamilton airshow this year has a FW190, and Me262, a Hurricane, a Spitfire, the only flying Mosquito and one of the two flying Lancasters.

The Lanc, Spitfire, Hurricane and Mosquito all went flying at the same time and did at least one flyby in formation, which would easily be the best sound ever created by man. Wish I didn't have to work this weekend..
 
2013-06-15 09:31:16 PM  

phalamir: So, about the nuclear bomber:

You can have a plane that has a normally-fueled engine, that has to land on a pretty regular basis

OR

You can have a nuclear-fueled bomber that can fly for months.  BUT it needs a small squadron of planes following it, all burning fuel.  Where are you saving anything?  You are going to either have to land the nuclear one with its tender planes when they run out of fuel, or you will have to keep sending more planes out to replace them.  Wouldn't it just be easier and cheaper to build a couple more conventional bombers and put them in a rota.  Sounds like LeMay's brand of farktard stupidity at work.

Plus, can you imagine being the poor crew stuck aboard this farker?  10-1 says it would have been up for less than three weeks before one of the pilots just straight-out power-dived the sucker, while the rest of the crew cheered him on.


for that scenario , you are forgetting the time this was all going down, the cold war,  and the notion that nuke powered subs were routine at the time. these Bombers were to be the airborne and visable counterparts to the unseen threat from below.

nuke sub operations operate for far longer than three weeks in just as bad as conditions. It is a matter of choosing a crew that for one, follows the reason, and two, doesn't mond the conditions.

in actual operation, save for some longevity stunts, an average mission would probably be about three weeks, at which point a new air craft would circle up to take over with no interuption of coverage while the preious crew and air craft would cicle back down to be replenished, repaired and so forth before recycling the operation again. And from the stories I've heard told by my cold war veteran relatives, It probably would have been a cake walk mission, if you are into that sort of thing.


Remember, all the nuke testing ever done was mostly done for rattling sabers, with legitimate scientific research hanging on for the ride. and the biggest thing anyone ever learned from any testing was that nukes were good for blowing shiat up, and little else after that.
 
2013-06-15 09:44:59 PM  

costermonger: Since this seems like a plane nerd thread, I should point out that the Hamilton airshow this year has a FW190, and Me262, a Hurricane, a Spitfire, the only flying Mosquito and one of the two flying Lancasters.

The Lanc, Spitfire, Hurricane and Mosquito all went flying at the same time and did at least one flyby in formation, which would easily be the best sound ever created by man. Wish I didn't have to work this weekend..


IMHO, the Mosquito is one of the prettiest planes ever built.  Just about the cleanest lines imaginable.

airpigz.com
 
2013-06-15 09:50:52 PM  
Atomic aircraft?  I always wish that the Russians went ahead with their idea. Nuclear airship.

www.airships.net
 
2013-06-15 09:58:37 PM  

Cerebral Knievel: nuke sub operations operate for far longer than three weeks in just as bad as conditions.


I'm not so sure.  From the sounds of it, everyone would be in a compartment the size of a big airstream trailer.  7 guys, all their food and supplies, and the cockpit and monitoring stations.  Even subs have more room.  Plus, subs at least give you the tension of the various ways the sea can kill you plus maybe running into someone else, so you get some respite from boredom via shiat-your-pants terror - this is "take a gentle bank to the right; hold that for 3 weeks."  Boredom, no tension to erase that, and 7 guys playing telephone booth = power-dive to relive the monotony.
 
2013-06-15 10:02:13 PM  

costermonger: Man, the new commenting system sucks. Where did all those spaces come from?


1. Click myFark
2. Uncheck the box that says "Enable modern rich text (WYSIWYG) editor for posting comments"
3. Click save

And now back to your regularly scheduled thread.
 
2013-06-15 10:03:13 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: IMHO, the Mosquito is one of the prettiest planes ever built.  Just about the cleanest lines imaginable.


Absolutely. And they were built like a fine musical instrument. Just an amazing aircraft all around.
 
2013-06-15 10:04:46 PM  
Oh hey guyz what's u...SPLAT.
1.bp.blogspot.com

/yeah yeah, they use it and it's "awesome"
//it's still a piece of sh*t...it's the M-16 of aircraft...it's used because of sheer bureaucratic will
 
2013-06-15 10:06:24 PM  

jaytkay: Mr_Juche: It's a Dash 7. the stuff hanging from it is part of a ground penetraing radar.

cdn-www.airliners.net

Rotating props. Loose cables hanging in front of those props.

What could possibly go wrong?


I'd be a bit concerned about the powerful radar and the radiation you are being exposed to in the cockpit of that thing.
 
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