BBC Cold War season
all it had to do was get into a missile firing position after intercepting the target ( a Russian aircraft carrying nuclear weapons) as quickly as possible
Kind of…if EE had followed the specification to the letter, we’d have ended up with something like an F104 Starfighter, all acceleration and performance with almost no agility whatsoever. The Lightning had a substantial amount of wing area and was certainly no slough when it came to a turning dogfight.
the Lightning really struggled as they tried to adapt it to do things it was never designed to do.Posted 4 years agocrashtestmonkeyMember
great to see Khrushchev’s grandson offering a Russian/Soviet perspective on things, tempering the potential jingoism and simplistic “red peril” presentation with some nice observations. Terrific series, though I agree Dominic Sandbrook could have done with turning the mugging-to-camera down a notch or seven.Posted 4 years agoMing the MercilessSubscriber
On the aircraft subject my old boss who was ex RAF used to say the the reason the world was round was so that the Jaguar could take off.
Was a bit disappointed with tonight’s as no mention of Ronald Raygun and his barmy Star Wars idea making the Soviets realise that they couldn’t outspend the West on arms along with the terrible financial toll Chernobyl caused assisting in the break up of the USSRPosted 4 years agoesselgruntfuttockMember
On the aircraft subject my old boss who was ex RAF used to say the the reason the world was round was so that the Jaguar could take off
I heard a good one about the Shackleton at an airshow. Commentator said that the Shack was just 10,000 rivets flying in close formation & that to take off, the Shacklebox went along the runway at a reasonable speed then the world just went round underneath it till it took off.Posted 4 years agowobbliscottMember
I too was saddened of the sight of the vulcan rotting at Woodford. I served my apprenticeship there during the early ’90’s and often popped down in my lunch break and had a nosey at the retired old-timers tinkering around with her. She was in half decent nick at that stage, at least visually (though I think there was a lot of internal corrosion), and they sometimes fired up an engine to keep them ticking over. There was a real desire to restore her to flying condition, but the funding never came through. I remember the flight displays at the annual Woodford air show when the Vulcan and Nimrod would put on fantastic shows for the crowds. Took it all for granted at the time, but would love to see them in action again.Posted 4 years ago
Ah, that hallowed roar of the tin triangle!
I remember living at Finningley and ALWAYS being at the Air Show. Given father being based there, was always with the equivalent of a ‘backstage pass’.
The Vulcan was always, for me, the highlight. That noise! Like the gates of hell opening, only louder. And then, their party tricks. A low pass with the bay open and a waggle. Some lovely climbing and rolling. But, the final piece – A low pass, loud and fast, and then stick back, throttle forward and stand the thing on it’s end and rocket skywards. To borrow from an earlier show, like a homesick angel. Only louder!
Apocryphal, though probably true, tales abound of the maintenance staff at Finningley asking them to stop doing it, as their power was tearing up the end of the strip!
Only one other plane ever had that glorious mix of grace under pressure. There’s an engine link as well. Some great stuff from the archives of Flight here.Posted 4 years ago
One of the most humbling stories about the calibre of men who served in those days, and how different times were is that, due to the design of the Vulcan cockpit precluding escape for the ‘back cabin’ crew, it was not unknown for the pilot and co-pilots ejection seat safety pins to be reinserted for low level flight, under the principle of ‘we’re all in this together’ 😯Posted 4 years agoJCLMember
I just sit there shaking my head throughout the entire series at the stupidity of humans. Millions of tons of ships and submarines rotting in Soviet shipyards after decades of pointless dick waving. All that effort wasted on crappy military technology while we’re still levelling mountains to burn coal for energy.
Imagine if all that effort and money was put into fusion etc.Posted 4 years agoRockhopperMember
Avro developed rear ejection capability for the Vulcan (and HP did for the Victor) but it was rejected on cost grounds.
The Vulcan seat pin story might be a bit of a myth.Posted 4 years agofootflapsSubscriber
20 years ago I was working on Submarine comms for Nuclear Subs. We’d developed a new system and if it came to Phase II trials (on a real sub) you’d have to go on a 6 month tour just to run a week’s tests as that was the minimum stint. Luckily we failed sea trials on an MoD research boat, so avoided the 6 months submarine stint….Posted 4 years ago
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