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Good aircraft books- what are you reading?

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Good aircraft books- what are you reading?

Old 19th Sep 2004, 16:46
  #21 (permalink)  
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Thanks, Virga, that was a good one indeed! For a similar pleasure try "Fate is the risk" by Gunther Goering (ISBN 3-929017-20-2) it is told a "tale", but in fact most of it is a true story and happened as written in there. I know and flew with at least four guys the book deals with, and they confirmed the true story! It is about shipping guns and other stuff from A to B and I read it in one go!!
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Old 19th Sep 2004, 20:44
  #22 (permalink)  
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Hahn sounds good. Will do.

Keg you seem to know Mr Collins quite well, do you know if he's writting or written another book at all? Wouldn't mind getting my hands on it.
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Old 30th Sep 2004, 07:40
  #23 (permalink)  
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another excellent read.. written by the other Mike Collins ( that is the Apollo 11 Command Model Pilot.. the one who stayed in orbit)
'Carrying the Fire'
Hard to track down but def. worth the effort..
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Old 17th Oct 2004, 08:15
  #24 (permalink)  
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Anyone bothered to check the price of the limited edition reprint of Sleddriver, ONLY $427-00 USD, OUCH
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Old 20th Oct 2004, 17:46
  #25 (permalink)  
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I too, am an Ernest K Gann fan. His writing has that fantastically evocative style which makes you want to jump up and say "ME TOO" What a writer.! However, I have recently read a book, just as evocative and in the same wonderful modest style.
It is "First Light" by Geofrfrey Wellum and will be available from your local library. It is the story of a young lad who joins the airforce and flies Spitfires. Before you run off with the idea that this is another, "I flew against the Hun" type of book...it is not.
it is the story of everybody who ever learned to fly...the Highs, the lows, and the downright heartbreaking. It is written in a beautifully modest and realistic style, and by the time you get to the end of the book he was only 21.!! To see what he had seen and done what he had done at 21 years of age is phenomenal. Do yourselves a favour and get it. If you can put it down after you have picked it up, then the beers are on me.
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Old 21st Oct 2004, 04:25
  #26 (permalink)  
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A good one is 'Winged Victory' by V.M. Yates, (or Yeats?).
It was written by a WW1 Camel pilot, and far from being Biggles-style escapism is a deeply moving story of a Camel squadron and its exploits in France. It seems to have been written in the spirit of putting down things as truthfully as possible, so it's easy to relate to the fears, excitement, war-weariness and so on that is portrayed, as it all reads so true.
Another excellent book is 'Wings on my sleeve' by Eric Brown (I think). He was a British fleet air arm pilot in WWII who went on to become a test pilot, flying all kinds of weird and wonderful machines, including testing some of the German types just after the war ended. A bunch of great stories, and well written.
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Old 16th Nov 2004, 09:01
  #27 (permalink)  
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Just thought I might send this up to the top again.

I don't know about anybody else but I enjoy a good read and everyone on this thread seems to be coming out with some pretty good ones.
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Old 17th Nov 2004, 02:04
  #28 (permalink)  
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Sled Driver is an absolute beauty. I bought one of the first editions from Napoleon's in Pitt St, I thought it was pricey at $75 or thereabouts. The new edition has lots more pics but $400+ ?!?!? RWS888 I'm sure you're an honourable type but I'm not letting my copy leave my study

"Going Downtown" by Col Jack Broughton is a good read, not sure if it's still in print. It's a better book than his earlier "Thud Ridge". Also about F-105s is Ken Bell's "100 Missions North" which is good.

Has anyone read Milt Thompson's book about the X-15? "At the Edge of Space" is the name. I have "Hypersonic" on the same topic which is good but it get a bit anorak-like in the details.

"Chickenhawk" I enjoyed. "Sea Harrier Over the Falklands" is a cracking read if you can get past Sharkey Ward's monumental ego....
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Old 17th Nov 2004, 09:37
  #29 (permalink)  
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Hi all,

Rearwhelsteer888 - Isn't the F-12 and the SR-71, twin and single seat versions of the same airplane?
The F-12 being the much better version in its hey-day!

Saw a heap of SR-71s and U-2s parked at Palmdale, California, (about 120 miles north of LA), where Lockheed assembled both the C-141 and the P-3C years ago during my days of post production test flying of the RAAFs new P-3Cs in mid '86.

I've read that book relating the designing, development, test flying and in-service life of both the F-12 and SR-71.

It's a really interesting read, a fantastic airplane!

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Old 17th Nov 2004, 10:07
  #30 (permalink)  
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Try, 'Sigh For a Merlin' by Alex Henshaw. He was the Spitfire test pilot based at Duxford, UK.

I bought a few copies when I went to Duxford about 5 years ago and wish I had of grabbed even more for other mates to read, as I won;t loan mine out, too teasured. Highly recommended reading. Just amazing stories.


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Old 17th Nov 2004, 20:49
  #31 (permalink)  
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Yes, Mike is working on the sequel to his story and more's the pity because his contributions have tailed off on Qrewroom. If you thought his book was entertaining, you should have read some of his posts about company goings-on. Absolute classics!!!

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Old 18th Nov 2004, 21:01
  #32 (permalink)  
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How refreshing to hear. This guy sounds like a real good bloke and a 'typical and true' line driver. It's obvious now where the influence in the book comes from.

Can't wait for the next bit. Is it a sequel or another story?

Aside from that I'm seriously giving thought as to whether I should invest in a copy of 'Sled Driver' the limited edition. How much would I be able to hire it out to people for? Of course I would have to have security and perhaps an interview before the lease takes place. A maximum reading time may also be required.
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Old 18th Nov 2004, 23:51
  #33 (permalink)  
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What a great thread.

My library says that I have no chance of getting Sleddriver or Fate is the Risk from them... but the other books mentioned on this thread are coming through. If there are others please put them up on this thread.

Again, thanks.
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Old 19th Nov 2004, 19:01
  #34 (permalink)  
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You can get "fate is the risk" from www.amazon.de it is from the other side of the planet, but no problem at all.
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Old 21st Nov 2004, 08:41
  #35 (permalink)  
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Hahn..a good drink.

I've tried but can't find it in the English Section. Any idea how much it would cost?

Can't read/speak much German.
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Old 21st Nov 2004, 12:21
  #36 (permalink)  
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here is the link: http://www.amazon.de/exec/obidos/ASI...728032-0608829
if you are an amazon customer somewhere you can use your normal lock-in to order, at least it worked when I tried the other way round. Price is EUR 17,99 plus shipment. Hope it helps.
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Old 22nd Nov 2004, 01:11
  #37 (permalink)  
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Hahn... now I'm concerned. If I order that will it be in German or English. The only thing that appears in English is the title.
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Old 22nd Nov 2004, 12:25
  #38 (permalink)  
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Relax! The book will be in english, my word! In fact "fate is the risk" is the english translation of "Der den Kopf riskiert" and all the comments and recommendations are based on the original book. And one of the blokes writing a comment flew with a couple of the guys mentioned in the book as well.
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Old 3rd Jan 2005, 09:58
  #39 (permalink)  
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Back to the top for more books.........
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Old 3rd Jan 2005, 11:49
  #40 (permalink)  
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Just finished the biography of Sidney Cotton "The last flight out of Berlin"
very interesting read, beginning from his WW1 flying through to developing the air recon unit and spy flights over Berlin and germany before the outbreak of WW2 in his personal Lockeed Electra,and the pink and pale coloured spitfires.
then goes on to tell of his story after the war, gun running for royalty using surplus WW2 bombers, and onto his middle east exploits! great read, and lots of fantastic photos especially do WW2 times!

found the copy at my local ABC store in Miranda.
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