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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Early Years of Flight Day 5: Flight Accessories and Bombs

Early years of flight weapons and accessories This is the fifth and final day of our Early years of Flight Series.
Our week started with the very early years of flight, along with the Schneider Schulgleiter SG 38 and Halberstadt CL IV and the French built Nieuport 28. We continue our tour of flight’s early years by looking at some of the accessories and bombs used by pilots on aerial attacks.

Before our a short tour, I wanted to share some thoughts about the National Air Force Museum in Dayton, Ohio.

USAF National Museum dates to  around 1923  when the Engineering Division at Dayton's McCook Field first collected technical artifacts for preservation.

In 1927 it moved to then-Wright Field and was housed in a succession of buildings. In 1954 as the Air Force Museum it was housed in its first permanent facility, Building 89 of the former Patterson Field in Fairborn, which had been an engine overhaul hangar, and many of its aircraft were parked outside and exposed to the weather. It remained there until 1971 when the current facility was first opened. Not including its annex on Wright Field proper, the museum has more than tripled in square footage since its inception in 1971.

The museum is completely free, relying on donations from patrons who travel thousands of miles to spend days walking through the history of flight and space. In two days I experienced a fraction of flight’s past, stopping to watch the many videos available, including the Wright Brother’s first flight.

British-Type 20 Pound Cooper Bomb

Bristish type cooper bomb
British-Type 20lb Cooper bomb with insignia of 213th Aero Squad. The nose cap was unscrewed from the bomb prior to take off so the small propeller had time to arm the bomb after it was dropped from the airplane.

French Roll Map

French metal roll map
This is a French issue metal roll map retrieved from disabled Breguet Bomber, after the plane and pilot were shot down by German planes over Conflans-sur-Jarney, France, September 14, 1918. The pilot was assigned to fly with the Escodrille 131 of French Air Service.

Balloon Attack Authorization

Authorization to attack balloons
When scheduled to attack a German Balloon, a United States fighter airplane usually had it’s .30 caliber guns replaced by a .50 caliber gun which fired blunt nose incendiary bullets. This type of dum-dum ammunition violated the rules of humane warfare except for attacking balloons. In this event, the pilot would carry an authorization stating he had illegal ammunition to attack a balloon. The paper would protect the pilot in case he was shot down and captured with the illegal weapons. 
Read the Entire Series:


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