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Eject! Eject! - John Nichol

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Eject! Eject! - John Nichol

Old 15th May 2023, 10:23
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Eject! Eject! - John Nichol

Another masterpiece from John Nichol. I cannot praise this highly enough. Captures the life changing enormity of assisted escape from a high performing (mostly) military aircraft. As the tag line says "escape from the aircraft is only the beginning". Stories of amazing determination, amazing bravery, amazing luck all made possible by amazing engineering and pursuit of perfection by Martin Baker and the many other seat makers around the world. Thanks John. Spoiler, not available until 25th May on Amazon.

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15th May 2023, 12:18
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Originally Posted by Tarnished
Another masterpiece from John Nichol. I cannot praise this highly enough. Captures the life changing enormity of assisted escape from a high performing (mostly) military aircraft. As the tag line says "escape from the aircraft is only the beginning". Stories of amazing determination, amazing bravery, amazing luck all made possible by amazing engineering and pursuit of perfection by Martin Baker and the many other seat makers around the world. Thanks John. Spoiler, not available until 25th May on Amazon.
Thanks so much for this - it's always very gratifying to have those 'in the know' read the book and offer comment (2 minor facts already need correction - a date and what happened to a glove....!!)
A number of PPRuNe contacts helped me with background information (as they always do) so my thanks again.

As many of us know.... pulling the black & yellow handle is just the start of a journey..



Old 15th May 2023, 12:18
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Originally Posted by Tarnished
Another masterpiece from John Nichol. I cannot praise this highly enough. Captures the life changing enormity of assisted escape from a high performing (mostly) military aircraft. As the tag line says "escape from the aircraft is only the beginning". Stories of amazing determination, amazing bravery, amazing luck all made possible by amazing engineering and pursuit of perfection by Martin Baker and the many other seat makers around the world. Thanks John. Spoiler, not available until 25th May on Amazon.
Thanks so much for this - it's always very gratifying to have those 'in the know' read the book and offer comment (2 minor facts already need correction - a date and what happened to a glove....!!)
A number of PPRuNe contacts helped me with background information (as they always do) so my thanks again.

As many of us know.... pulling the black & yellow handle is just the start of a journey..



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Old 15th May 2023, 14:33
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Looking forward to this. Have never been in a fast jet, but have experienced most other types, but have witnessed a live, low-level ejection as a spectator at the Lowestoft Air Show when the Harrier went for a swim. (I handed my binoculars to the lady having hysterics next to me so she could see the pilot was alive snd waving from the dingy just a couple of hundred metres away) I have enjoyed JNís Lancaster, Spitfire and Tornado as well as Tornado Down and Team Tornado (bought a second hand copy on a book selling site recently and found it had an invitation card for the publication party, signed by JN and JP inside!) as well as a couple of his novels.
Always found Johnís books very well researched and written, with that authenticity that can only come from someone whoís been in a cockpit.
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Old 15th May 2023, 16:17
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Originally Posted by John Nichol
Thanks so much for this - it's always very gratifying to have those 'in the know' read the book and offer comment (2 minor facts already need correction - a date and what happened to a glove....!!)
A number of PPRuNe contacts helped me with background information (as they always do) so my thanks again.
As many of us know.... pulling the black & yellow handle is just the start of a journey..
Hi John
I've very much enjoyed your previous titles, but as an Audible user I have a question about something that I realise you probably have no control over.
Some of the military conventions, abbreviations and acronyms that we are so familiar with are so mispronounced that it rather spoils the narrative. A simple example is 617 Squadron being pronounced "six hundred and seventeen", or 206 Squadron as "two hundred and six". It just sounds wrong. I guess 99.9% of listeners wouldn't know any different, but are you ever asked how these things should be pronounced?
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Old 15th May 2023, 16:27
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Originally Posted by John Nichol
Thanks so much for this - it's always very gratifying to have those 'in the know' read the book and offer comment (2 minor facts already need correction - a date and what happened to a glove....!!)
A number of PPRuNe contacts helped me with background information (as they always do) so my thanks again.

As many of us know.... pulling the black & yellow handle is just the start of a journey..


If you want corrections.... How many engines does an A-4 have?

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Old 15th May 2023, 18:55
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Originally Posted by Video Mixdown
Hi John
I've very much enjoyed your previous titles, but as an Audible user I have a question about something that I realise you probably have no control over.
Some of the military conventions, abbreviations and acronyms that we are so familiar with are so mispronounced that it rather spoils the narrative. A simple example is 617 Squadron being pronounced "six hundred and seventeen", or 206 Squadron as "two hundred and six". It just sounds wrong. I guess 99.9% of listeners wouldn't know any different, but are you ever asked how these things should be pronounced?
This is a really good point - thanks for mentioning. I have no input into the audio recording. Though I could of course listen to them all - but after you've written the book, then read 9 drafts as it is edited, I just don't have the time. I will certainly send this message on to the audio team though. Much appreciated.
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Old 16th May 2023, 05:42
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I look forward to reading this as it’s a fascinating and not that well covered topic. Thankfully, out of my course to go on to FJ, I’m the only one not to have ejected. But then John knows that as we were both on that course!
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Old 16th May 2023, 08:31
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I wish people would stop writing books, I'm running out of places to put shelves...
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Old 16th May 2023, 08:55
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Must have at least one😏
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Old 16th May 2023, 12:24
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Originally Posted by MG
I look forward to reading this as itís a fascinating and not that well covered topic. Thankfully, out of my course to go on to FJ, Iím the only one not to have ejected. But then John knows that as we were both on that course!
They were Halcyon Days indeed MG. Who'd have thought how it would all turn out for us.... Quite a few of us grateful to Martin-Baker for that 2nd chance at life!
I see Barndoor (ejectee number 6022) regularly & we both wear our Bremont MB1 watches with 'pride'...... & Harls was 6157. Who else took the M-B ride?

I was privileged to know Jo Lancaster who was M-B ejectee number 1. I am 6089.

When he ejected on a MK1 seat, it took around 30 seconds to get under the parachute:
jettison canopy - pull red handle - bang out - stabilise - manually unstrap from seat - push seat away - freefall - pull personal parachute handle

It was around 2.5 seconds for me on a Mk10.

This is a Mk1 Seat he used. VERY primitive!


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Old 16th May 2023, 12:47
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Another one on preorder....Mr South American River will be busy that day
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Old 16th May 2023, 18:48
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As a side note, i really enjoyed his book Tornado. I didn't want to, I don't know why, preconceptions I suppose. But it was really good IMHO, parts of it really it home probably because I know some of the people written about I guess.

I will be buying this.
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Old 16th May 2023, 19:31
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Originally Posted by downsizer
As a side note, i really enjoyed his book Tornado. I didn't want to, I don't know why, preconceptions I suppose. But it was really good IMHO, parts of it really it home probably because I know some of the people written about I guess.

I will be buying this.
I probably shouldn't ask.... But why didn't you 'want' to enjoy TORNADO?

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Old 16th May 2023, 20:14
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Not often I praise the DM but they published an extract of John's fantastic book - completely riveting to read! Ashley Stevenson was the boss when I was a mechanic on 3(F), a thoroughly nice, thoughtful and calm leader. I recall the accident with Kate Saunders but hadn't realised it was quite so horrific. Two exceptionally brave people.

John - you do an incredible job at putting the reader into the cockpit! I was lucky enough to get a back seat ride in a T10 and was very glad not to have to pull any handles! I will definitely be buying the book and I suspect I'll finish it quickly!
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Old 16th May 2023, 20:40
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John

book is on preorder. Do you cover any of high Mach number ejections ? I seem to recall the fastest ejection was from a mig 31? Brain seems to be failing me tonight think it is dog related
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Old 17th May 2023, 06:25
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Originally Posted by dagenham
John

book is on preorder. Do you cover any of high Mach number ejections ? I seem to recall the fastest ejection was from a mig 31? Brain seems to be failing me tonight think it is dog related
Interestingly, there are a number of descriptions of a 'first supersonic ejection' - the one I cover is George Smith in 1955. And the astonishing Mach 2 testing using live bears.....
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Old 17th May 2023, 07:43
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FUR yur ForBEARance from Aviation History Jul 2018 Vol.28, No.6


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Old 17th May 2023, 07:53
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This US Air Force pilot ejected while flying supersonic (and survived) | We Are The Mighty
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Old 17th May 2023, 07:54
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Originally Posted by John Nichol
I probably shouldn't ask.... But why didn't you 'want' to enjoy TORNADO?
You're right, you probably shouldn't!

However since you asked....the shortest answer is, despite never having met or worked with you, I didn't think I liked you.

I joined a couple years after the events referenced in the book and there was certainly a line in various crew rooms that you were a bell end, or a failure, or a big head, or various combinations of similar. Also annoyance at seeing you trotted out on the news etc, etc. These lines were, in clear hindsight, peddled by people who had never even come close to putting themselves into the danger that you and others did in '91. I'm ashamed to admit I accepted those PoVs without any critical thought or analysis and should have realised that if someone raises their head above the parapet then others will take pot shots. So I spent the last 30 years largely discounting anything you said or wrote. I like to think I don't behave like that today.

Now I was gifted the book and thought, I don't want to read this pish (also I spent more time on harriers than tornado), but I took it on holiday with me last summer and I couldn't put it down. I'll admit that parts brought a tear to my eye. I thought it was really well written and thoroughly enjoyed it. I only really understood a fraction of what you and the guys went through till I read it, my career was mostly based around Iraq and Afghan with a bit of ex-Yug thrown in.

Now, you may well be a bell end, I have no idea, but I suspect not! And you can certainly write a good book. And I will no longer trot out tired tropes about you until I've met you to confirm one way or the other!

Hope that makes sense and doesn't offend too much!






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Old 17th May 2023, 08:42
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'Controls frozen. Going straight in!' by Justin Hardy in Aviation History Jan 2007 Volume 17 Number 3
"FEBRUARY 28, 1955, NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.-Test pilot George Smith plunged into the sea, unconscious but alive, after ejecting from a North American F-l00A Super Sabre. When he was forced to bail out, the plane was traveling at 777 mph, or Mach 1.05 - making him the first person to survive an ejection while traveling at supersonic speeds.'''

... at 37,000 feet - soon after breaking the sound barrier- the plane's nose tipped downward and the controls refused to budge. The hydraulic lock resulted in an uncontrolled dive, and Smith radioed back to the tower: "Lost hydraulic pressure. : Controls frozen. Going straight in!"...

...After he ejected, the wind slammed into him with a force of 8,000 pounds, creating a deceleration force equivalent to 40 Gs...."
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