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What are you reading right now?

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Curtis Carter
Young Eagles Pilot or VolunteerHomebuilder or Craftsman
19
Posts
4
#1 Posted: 4/4/2011 11:52:58

I am kind of wondering what I might be missing, kind of thought lots of folks would have books to endorse, so I created this topic.    I guess I'm first.

I am currently reading "Bury us Upside Down, The Misty Pilots and the Secret Battle for the Ho Chi Minh Trail."



Reiff Lorenz
Homebuilder or Craftsman
26
Posts
3
#2 Posted: 4/4/2011 12:57:46

 

I just finished Bob Nuckolls's book on aviation electrical systems, The AeroElectric Connection. It's available as a free download from his web site, or you can purchase it in paper or on CD ROM. All 3 options are here: http://www.matronics.com/aeroelectric/Catalog/pub/pub.html

 

I'll be starting the Tony Bingelis four-book series (Bingelis on Engines, Firewall Forward, Sportplane Builder, Sportplane Construction) available from EAA at: http://www.shopeaa.com/bingelissetof4.aspx

 

For those looking for aviation stories I highly recommend Fate Is The Hunter by Ernest K. Gann. It's a collection of the most amazing stories from a commercial pilot's career. Buy it from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/FATE-HUNTER-Ernest-K-Gann/dp/0671636030/

 



Craig Cantwell
43
Posts
8
#3 Posted: 4/4/2011 13:50:30

I'm currently working through various volumes of Alcoa Aluminum handbooks interspersed between some Dale Brown titles and others. Been working my way through Graham White's tomes on the R-2800 and R-4360 and needed to go for some lighter stuff for a little while. I'm slow this year as I've only completed about 15 books so far. Last year I was past 40 by this point.



Jerry Rosie
Young Eagles Pilot or Volunteer
482
Posts
101
#4 Posted: 4/5/2011 08:27:41

I just finished "I Could Never Be So Lucky Again", an autobiography of Jimmy Doolittle.  An amazing man who did much more for aviation than lead the first bombing of Japan in WWII. (For example - deeply involved in the development of 100LL)

 



Cheers, Jerry NC22375 out of 07N
Robert Dingley
Homebuilder or Craftsman
161
Posts
38
#5 Posted: 4/5/2011 19:52:29

I'm re-reading "DUSTOFF, The memoir of an Army Aviator" by Michael J. Novosel (MOH). A good read and highly recomended.

Mike was an Army Aviator twice. First when he was awarded his Army Air Force wings in WW2 (B-29s), then later during Viet Nam when he signed up as an Army Aviator. The USAF didn't need any B-29 drivers with the rank of LTC in the early 60's, but the Army could always use another Chief Warrant Officer with lots of experience. Mike first flew for the Army Special forces, then did two tours in RVN as a Dustoff pilot. His son, Mike Jr also a Dustoff pilot served with him in the same unit in 69. They were featured on the front page of Stars and Stripes pictured in the same cockpit.

They each rescued the other within the same week when when each was shot down. I did my tour north of where they were assigned, so did not cross trails. I had first met Mike Sr. earlier during our medical training prior to deployment. (Yes, D.O. pilots did work on wounded because they are medics too)  I met Mike Jr at Tipton AAF when they both flew up from Ft Bragg in their PA 28. I lent them a car so they could check on their assignments at WO branch.

A lot of the things that Mike told me over the years didn't make his book. On one of his tours at Eglin AFB near here, Mike was running a test program called "Pinball". Google that. Special up armored  models of the P-63 engaged in attacks on B-29's that fired frangible ammo at them. Hits were recorded electonicaly. He also told me that he went in the Army because his Glaucoma knocked him out of his DC-9 seat. The Army made allowances  for it. Both Mikes had cottages side by side on a cove near Eglin AFB that looked like book ends. Mike's retirement gig was to fly the jump plane for the Golden Knights. I later flew in comm aviation with Mike jr. Both are gone now. The main drag through the Army Aviation Center at Ft Rucker was renamed Novosel Ave.

Bob



Stephen Robards
29
Posts
10
#6 Posted: 4/6/2011 06:31:18

Yesterday i just finished reading though the March edition of 'Sport Pilot'. I called into the post office this afternoon and there was the April issue. (They take a little while to cross the big pond)

I have almost finished a book called 'Outback Heroes' commemorating 75 years of the  Royal Flying Doctor Service in Australia.

The book was published in 2003 so they would have been operating now for 83 years.

Steve



Eric Witherspoon
Homebuilder or Craftsman
29
Posts
3
#7 Posted: 4/6/2011 23:47:12

Some of my favorites:

A Lonely Kind of War by Marshall Harrison.  Extremely intense.  I thought I was doing well as a CFI to keep the student from killing us while monitoring traffic.  He had multiple radios going each ear - keeping track of the bombing runs, the guys on the ground, central bases providing more assignments - while being shot at and marking targets...

This leads to a search for any other books about FAC's - right up there with the most intense flying there has ever been.

The Sky Beyond by Sir Gordon Taylor.  Stories of multiple first flights across the Pacific, pioneering routes that were needed for WWII.  2 episodes stick out - flying from Australia to Hawaii, then taking one of the local bigwigs for a quick turn around the pattern - and running out of gas!  And flying a PBY Catalina on anchors during a hurricane...

Not quite as easy to read, but quite fascinating - Red Eagles, America's Secret MiGs by Steve Davies.  About what the U.S. did with Soviet aircraft that were collected during the Cold War.  No, it wasn't just some flight testing to see what they could do.  They operated an entire "adversary training" unit and provided about the most realistic training one could get - actual encounters with the enemy's aircraft. 



Frank Giger
Homebuilder or Craftsman
117
Posts
33
#8 Posted: 4/7/2011 02:02:26

The EAA discussion boards.

biggrin

The History of Flight from the Smithsonian; shocking stuff to read about how casual they were over casualities at the early airshows - thirty spectators killed in a crash, including a Minister of Defense?  Hmmm, may have to cancel for the rest of day to clear off the bodies, but we'll start again at 0800 tomorrow.


shocked



Craig Cantwell
43
Posts
8
#9 Posted: 4/7/2011 10:35:47

Eric: Also try Christopher  Robbins "Ravens". It's about the guys in the air war over in Laos, when we were "not" there. One of the guys on our dayshift crew is a former Raven ground crew. It was very interesting talking to him about the book and his experiences.  A couple of more intersting books to try:

The Doom Pussy by Elaine Shepard: The air war in Viet Nam

The Blackwatch by Earnest Gann: About flying the U-2

Admiral Wags by Fanny Jessop Sherman; Life aboard the USS Lexington and her sinking in 1942, written from the Admiral's dog's perspective. Yeah, its written for the younger readers, but if you can find a copy at a reasonable price, it's a good read for any age.



Amanda Brzezinski
Warbirds of America Member
3
Posts
0
#10 Posted: 4/8/2011 14:51:37

Well, taking the conversation more to spaceflight, Jim Lovell's 'Lost Moon' is one of my favorites.  It's the book that the movie Apollo 13 was based off, but has a lot more detail with the spaceflight systems and Jim's time flying in the service before NASA. Gene Kranz's 'Failure is Not an Option' is great for putting a lot of the Gemini and Apollo missions into perspective, and describes the systems used in flight very well. 

Another great book that is always on my table is 'The Last Mission' by Harry Mazer.  It's a lower reading level book (got it from my old high school) but its really great for describing the life for bomber crews of B17's over Europe.  Still one of the best, and it's a good one to just pick up and read quick. 



Curtis Carter
Young Eagles Pilot or VolunteerHomebuilder or Craftsman
19
Posts
4
#11 Posted: 4/8/2011 15:11:38 Modified: 4/8/2011 15:12:06

Wow, these are great.  I will definitely put some of these on my reading list!!

 



Eric Witherspoon
Homebuilder or Craftsman
29
Posts
3
#12 Posted: 4/9/2011 01:10:19

Craig:  See "Call Sign Rustic" by Richard Wood.  Sounds like there might be some similarities to "Ravens" - except over Cambodia.  I never knew about the Bronco until I ran across Harrison's book, then I searched on the subject.  Fascinating to find out what "didn't" go on in places we "weren't"...

Flying Forts by Martin Caidin - to learn a whole heck of a lot about the B-17 - how Boeing wouldn't exist today without it - where the name really comes from - the development of the different models - and numerous high-intensity stories about the missions and the people who made them happen. 



Michael Murphy
Warbirds of America Member
17
Posts
3
#13 Posted: 4/9/2011 12:10:46

Lately my aviation reading has been Sheet Metal Building Basics by Jack Dueck,  the Wick's Aircraft Supply catalog and the blueprints for my Thatcher CX4. When I'm at work I read a lot of different fiction on my Nook  during lunch.

 

  Every time I make it to Oshkosh I make sure to hit the book sellers in the fly market. I've found some really good books there. I really like to read books about aviation history, especially WW II. Speaking of which can anyone recommend any good books on ground-based Pacific theater air operations? Most of the books I've seen are about carrier-based operations.



Timothy O'Connor
Homebuilder or Craftsman
82
Posts
28
#14 Posted: 4/12/2011 11:53:03

One book that did a great deal to get me into rotorcraft was "Chicken Hawk" by Robert Mason.

It is a autobiography from day one of heli training, through the war and then as a CFI.

 

Another all time favoriate of mine is "From Autogiro to Gyroplane" by Dr. Bruce Charnov

 

Then of course there is my book...

 

.



"Rotors, the only way to FLY" Commercial Rotorcraft Pilot, CFI, AGI, SP-FW
Christian Sturm
Vintage Aircraft Association MemberHomebuilder or Craftsman
13
Posts
7
#15 Posted: 4/15/2011 15:42:16 Modified: 4/15/2011 15:42:47

Just finished "Forever Flying", Bob Hoover's book. Excellent and can't believe I hadn't read till now.

Currently reading "Fighter Pilot" by Robin Olds.  What an excellent read and he is a good writer!

Also in and out of "Moldless Composite Sandwich Homebuilt Construction".  Might dabble in that one day.

 



Tony Johnstone
IAC MemberNAFI Member
61
Posts
15
#16 Posted: 4/15/2011 20:23:50

Michael-

   If you can find a copy of Pierre Closterman's  "Flames in the Sky", it has a couple of segments about Army pilots in the early stages of the war in the Pacific.  Excellent reading, he also wrote "The Big Show", detailing his own experiences as a Spitfire and Tempest pilot in the Free French RAF.

   I have just finished re-reading what I consider to be one of the best factual books of WW1 aerial warfare,  "No Parachute" by Arthur Gould Lee.  It is a collection of letters written by a Sopwith Pup pilot in France to his wife describing in remarkably matter-of-fact terms his daily experiences over the Western Front.  It absolutely floored me to realize that they were flying routine patrols at 18,000 feet sitting in open cockpits with a single gun that was usually unserviceable due to being frozen.If you run across a copy I would highly recommend it.

                                             Cheers, Tony



Bernard Christiano
26
Posts
11
#17 Posted: 4/23/2011 19:40:05

I can't say that I'm reading anything right now as I'm not an avid reader but in the past have read several interesting books with aviation themes.

 

The First and the Last by Adolf Galland is a very interesting account of the air war and life of a fighter pilot of The Third Reich.

Exocet by Jack Higgins is great fiction novel about a plot to smuggle Exocet missles by the Argentine government during the Falklands war. It centers around an Argentine pilot and has the usual intrigue and action common in Higgin's novels.

Under His Wing by Lt. Col. James B. Cheney is his personnel account of his life as a P51 Mustang fighter pilot / P.O.W in WWII.  I was fortunate enough to meet Mr. Cheney and his wife out at EAA Airventure and have him autograph my book.

 
Regards,

 

Bernard

 

 



BernardC
Gene Woods
2
Posts
0
#18 Posted: 4/23/2011 21:45:25

I am currently reading "The Flight of the Century: Charles Lindbergh and the Rise of American Aviation" by Thomas Kessner.  I'm about half way through and am enjoying the wonderful detail describing this amazing story.

Other aviation books I have read:

"Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand.  Currently on the NY Times best seller list.  WWII saga of a B24 crew that went down in the pacific.  It's a true story and the primary character in the book is still alive today!

"Candy Bombers" by Andrei Cherny.  The true story of the Berlin Airlift after WWII.

"East to the Dawn" by Susan Butler.  Amelia Earhardt's life story.  The recent movie was based on this book.  The book is much better than the movie.

"Wilber and Orville" by Fred Howard.  The title says it all...

"Flight of Passage" by Rinker Buck.  The true story of two teenage boys flying a Piper Cub across the United States in the 1960s.

"Hornet Flight" by Ken Follett.  WWII saga about RAF vs the Luftwaffe with an unlikely hero.

All of these books I highly recommend to anyone with a passion for aviation.