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Anyone here had a flight in a Spitfire?

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Anyone here had a flight in a Spitfire?

Old 20th Oct 2019, 19:30
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Definitely on my list, though a bit handicapped by living in the US. One of the several reasons I'm engaged in some serious weight loss! I've flown the Collings P51 and B25, which were both huge fun. I did everything, including basic acro (loops, rolls) except t/o and landing in the P51, and even did those in the B25. They are both a delight to fly. Helps to have a bit of T6 time which fortunately is available round here. It's said that the T6 was designed to have every known fault of current production combat aircraft, so you would never be surprised. I can believe it.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 05:31
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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I flew in the TR9 used by Boutbee out of Lee on Solent recently. It has FULL dual controls (it’s a real original trainer) and I got plenty of stick time. (was even told where the trim wheel is)

Before I did it I had a flight in a Tiger Moth and then a Harvard at Duxford. Well worth it. Got more out of the Spitfire flight.

Do tell them you have a license (presuming you have one). Do tell them if you’ve previously flown any aeros.

When asked about it, I always say “it felt exactly like you’d imagine it would feel”

Watch out, it gets a bit dusty in the back when the wheels leave the ground.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 06:44
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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David Jason's "Planes, Trains & Automobiles" has just started airing on SBS here. He's a helicopter pilot, but is flying, driving and riding in all sorts of classical vehicles. So far, he's had some stick time on a DC3 and a P51. Wouldn't be surprised if he gets to fly a Spitfire.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 07:05
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Hydromet View Post
David Jason's "Planes, Trains & Automobiles" has just started airing on SBS here. He's a helicopter pilot, but is flying, driving and riding in all sorts of classical vehicles. So far, he's had some stick time on a DC3 and a P51. Wouldn't be surprised if he gets to fly a Spitfire.
He's already flown in one for an earlier documentary about WWII RAF pilots. Can't remember what it was called - sorry.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 07:31
  #25 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by kghjfg View Post
I flew in the TR9 used by Boutbee out of Lee on Solent recently. It has FULL dual controls (it’s a real original trainer) and I got plenty of stick time. (was even told where the trim wheel is)

Before I did it I had a flight in a Tiger Moth and then a Harvard at Duxford. Well worth it. Got more out of the Spitfire flight.

Do tell them you have a license (presuming you have one). Do tell them if you’ve previously flown any aeros.

When asked about it, I always say “it felt exactly like you’d imagine it would feel”

Watch out, it gets a bit dusty in the back when the wheels leave the ground.
Brilliant, many thanks indeed.

Lee on Solent is the nearest to me, and I'd already spotted that they do a "round the island" trip. I've got a licence (PPL with floatplane rating), and both my last two aeroplanes were taildraggers, but neither me nor my medical are current (no reason, other than I sold my aeroplane when we started building our house around 6 or 7 years ago). My aeros experience is restricted to fun stuff back when I was flying as a flight test scientist, decades ago, plus some limited glider aerobatics (as PUT) in the late 1970's (loops, chandelles, etc in a Blanik). I was in a Lynx HAS.2 in 1980 (doing acceptance to service trials) when we barrel rolled when doing a low pass over Culdrose, just for giggles, as we knew those on the ground watching might think the blades would clap hands, plus I had a bit of fun in a Hawk on the way back to Chivenor from some chase trials over the range, but nothing serious.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 11:13
  #26 (permalink)  
Man Bilong Balus long PNG
 
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The only thing worst than not having a flight in a Spitfire would be having a flight in the back seat of a Spitfire. Baggage, moi?
Not interested unless its the only seat of a single seater.
{Grumpy guts)

I'll not be dithered to by some arse in a growbag and pretend-badges purporting to be a WWII Spitfire pilot whose parents were still in nappies back then.

If I get offered a rear seat, you can have it or someone else can. I'll wait my turn for the correct seat, and fly it quite well wearing a tie.

Russell (old school)
I'm with Russel in this case.
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 11:29
  #27 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Pinky the pilot View Post
I'm with Russel in this case.
The difference is that I still have my boots, growbag (sans badges, just the velcro patches), watch, gloves etc...
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Old 21st Oct 2019, 12:15
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Russell Gulch View Post
To be honest, VP, I'll not be dithered to by some arse in a growbag and pretend-badges purporting to be a WWII Spitfire pilot whose parents were still in nappies back then.

If I get offered a rear seat, you can have it or someone else can. I'll wait my turn for the correct seat, and fly it quite well wearing a tie.

Russell (old school)

That made me laugh!

You might like to know, however, that the current chief pilot at Boultbee definitely earned his pretend badges as a former combat pilot and the UK's chief test pilot instructor, amongst other accolades.


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Old 21st Oct 2019, 12:35
  #29 (permalink)  
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Being realistic, there are really only two options.

Anyone with enough experience could opt to do a conversion course and then fly a single seat Spitfire, but the cost looks to be ~£65k, plus ~£5k/hour for the solo time. Not sure I'd meet the requirements for this, though, as I don't have enough high performance A/C time.

For anyone that either doesn't have a licence/medical, or doesn't have the required hours, including taildragger/high performance A/C hours, then the only option is a joy ride in a two seater. I'm happy enough with this. I spent most of my flying career tucked away in the bowels of various A/C measuring stuff, anyway.
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Old 22nd Oct 2019, 02:28
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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Why not take the missus to NZ for a holiday, escape the Brexit madness for a bit

Warbird Adventure Rides - Flight Experiences

And the prices are in South Pacific Pesos
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Old 22nd Oct 2019, 09:18
  #31 (permalink)  
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I'm sitting in the conservatory of the Selsdon Wetherspoons wondering if I'll catch a glimpse of an elliptical wing curving round on to the Biggin approach - never thought that seeing and hearing a Spitfire could be an almost daily occurrence in my neck of the woods.
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Old 22nd Oct 2019, 09:46
  #32 (permalink)  
Man Bilong Balus long PNG
 
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Anyone with enough experience could opt to do a conversion course and then fly a single seat Spitfire, but the cost looks to be ~£65k, plus ~£5k/hour for the solo time. Not sure I'd meet the requirements for this, though, as I don't have enough high performance A/C time.
Interesting comment, VP959. A bit of a story, if I may;

Back in the early 90's after a short but 'eventful' time in PNG, I was flying a Pawnee Glider Tug for a local (then) full time Gliding Club and on one of the weekly training courses we had a freshly retired RAAF type as a Student. "Always wanted to fly a Glider but never had the time...."

Turned out that he had joined the RAAF in the early 40's. Types flown were the Hurricane, Spitfire, then Mustang, Vampire, Meteor and Sabre. Had a desk job by the time the Mirage came along so only got a dual ride in one.

Guess which type was his all time favourite? Hint; It had a long nose and a Merlin engine.

One day we were talking between launches and I asked him just how hard was the Spitfire to fly. He pointed at the Pawnee and said
"How many hours do you have in that?"
I replied "About 500." His comment was,

"I'd sit you in the cockpit and run through the drills with you until you could recite them perfectly. I'd then stick a blindfold over your eyes and make sure that you could locate every lever, switch etc without hesitation. After you had done that to my satisfaction I would get you to start up the engine and we'd go through the run ups. Then I'd say to you

"Off you go and don't bend it!"

I now have just over 1400 hours in Pawnees.
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Old 22nd Oct 2019, 09:47
  #33 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by treadigraph View Post
I'm sitting in the conservatory of the Selsdon Wetherspoons wondering if I'll catch a glimpse of an elliptical wing curving round on to the Biggin approach - never thought that seeing and hearing a Spitfire could be an almost daily occurrence in my neck of the woods.
Lucky you!

My wife never understood why, when we lived in Earnley, South of Chichester, in the late 1990s, I'd rush outside as soon as I heard that distinctive Merlin sound. We had a whole summer, during which Carolyn Grace practised display routines in ML407, almost overhead our back garden, on any clear day, it seemed. Absolutely magical, like having our own personal air displays.
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 02:03
  #34 (permalink)  
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I spent a lovely evening on the IOW in the early 60's. Mary Wilkins was quietly charming. (Don was there, but they weren't married then)
I knew she'd delivered aircraft in WWII but had no real knowledge of the extreme demands put on these young ladies.

Reading Jackie Moggridge's 'Spitfire Girl' was an eye-opener. Fantastic little book of a fantastic life. She and Mary landed in opposite directions, a no-ATC pair of landings.

IIRC, Caroline Grace was kind enough to host Jackie, and why not, she'd delivered the aircraft - being the first person to fly it! Test pilot's? I'm not sure. The book implied not.

A chap I've know all his life was filming from the rear seat. When they'd done, he jokingly suggested he fly. He did, for several minutes. Previous experience, mostly camera drones. Green with envy.
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 07:39
  #35 (permalink)  
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Does anybody know anything about the Spitfire simulators that seem to have come into being recently? Is there any real aviation input from them or are they just a glorified fairground ride?
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 09:11
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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See
https://www.boultbeeflightacademy.co...tfiresimulator

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/the-...eaving-ground/
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 12:31
  #37 (permalink)  
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The simulator sounds like a good idea, relatively inexpensive, too, at £200 for 30 minutes (20 mins "airborne"). Makes me wonder if it might be worth doing a sim session first, to get a feel for the A/C, so that I (hopefully) might feel a bit more familiar come the flight. Mind you, I strongly suspect that excitement and adrenaline might cause any short bit of "training" to just fly out through the canopy, on the day.

I've decided to take the Lee-on-Solent option with Boultbee, mainly because a flight around the Isle of Wight seems like fun, plus the airspace over most of the Eastern side of the island is uncontrolled. It's also only about an hour's drive away (although it seems the sim is at Goodwood, I think, so that would mean two trips). Just a matter of picking an available date, and staring hard into my crystal ball to try and see when is likely to have the best chance of a nice clear day.
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 17:30
  #38 (permalink)  
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Makes me wonder if it might be worth doing a sim session first, to get a feel for the A/C, so that I (hopefully) might feel a bit more familiar come the flight.
Exactly what I was thinking, although I'm not sure about the mission described in the advert, my style would be more to try a few manouvres - loops, rolls etc, and maybe beat up the Thames and through Tower Bridge, if the sim can do that.
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Old 23rd Oct 2019, 17:48
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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If you can't manage the Spit ride, there are a few F1 cars with 2 seats.
However, everyone I've seen has one big problem.
The pax always has a great view of the back of the headrest in front of them..
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Old 24th Oct 2019, 00:23
  #40 (permalink)  
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I was recently saddened to hear that the old Rolls Royce Spitfire XIV which was being rebuilt/restored to fly after its tragic fatal accident at Woodford in '92, is now going to be the basis of a Spitfire simulator. I'm pretty sure progress with a largely new build airframe structure was very advanced which appears to me to be a very expensive change of heart and waste of a potential flyer. There may be human reasons behind the decision, and understandably so, but seeing this beautiful aeroplane back in the air, especially in its 1960s two-tone blue scheme would be a better memorial.
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