First Hundred Years

FTLComm - Oshkosh Wisconsin - Tuesday, December 16, 2003
With many newspaper and television stories on the December 17, 1903 flight at Kitty Hawk there is no need for us to go through this event here. The picture above is the aircraft that will make the flight to replicate this remarkable event. Both Ford and Microsoft pitched in with sponsorships of this project and the Experimental Aircraft Association provided the organisation for the commemoration.

The first Wright brothers aircraft was little more than some sticks and fabric with a unique light weight internal combustion engine. It had elevators and something that could be considered rudders but roll was controlled by actually warping the wings. It was four years later when the aileron was invented. Since then the aircraft has made steady progress up until the mid 1930. By then the limits of a piston engines were reached and regulation pretty much locked down the way aircraft and their power plants were constructed.

During my life time the metals have improved, plastics introduced, the turbine engine refined and the introduction of electronics into the control, navigation and operation of the aircraft. It sounds like a lot but the essentials had been achieved long before World War II began in Asia.

To celebrate the occassion of the achievement of powered flight I thought I would just toss you some pictures Andrew and I took this summer at the AirVenture event at Oshkosh.

Home Built
Neuport 17

Looks Like a
Rearwin Cloudster

Bi-plane racer

Grosvenor House

DH88 Comet

Monoplane racer

Interceptor 400


Stinson "Detroiter" 1929

Stinson "Detroiter"

Stinson SM-6000-B Tri-Motor, 1931


Sikorsky S-38

Sikorsky S-38

Sikorsky S-39

Sikorsky S-39

Waco D series

Travel Air 6000

Inside the Travel Air

Johnson Rocket 185

Voyager 108

Cessna Crane
Bamboo Bomber

Cessna 172

Beech 18

Close to the Beech

Late model
Beech 18

Marine version of the Beech C-45

Beech 18 parking

Lockheed 10A Electra

Timothy W. Shire


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Editor : Timothy W. Shire
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