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 Post subject: Flight Testing
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 8:49 am 
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Posts: 14814
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http://www.wwiiaircraftperformance.org/

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 Post subject: Re: Flight Testing
PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:59 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 10:24 pm
Posts: 2200
QUite nice! This is a good resource of older flight testing documents. In my 'favorites' folder!


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 Post subject: Re: Flight Testing
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 1:17 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:33 pm
Posts: 17
Back in the day, I was in flight test, on programs that didn't exist at the time (Senior Trend, and Oxcart to name two mind blowers), at places that didn't exist (love to tell you, have to kill you). Back then I lived in Las Vegas, and flew to work every day on - first - old nasty military versions of DC6's (C-118's) (No air conditioning, hotter than h*ll, and flew right through the chop!!!! - lotta barf'n went on some days - started at the front of the plane and travelled in a wave - and we were all seasoned fliers - sometimes that old rattle trap didn't smell any too nice when the doors were opened on the ramp at McCarran) and then - heaven - the lap of luxury arrived.... 737-200's - white with a red stripe, and blissful air pacs! now we had cool air and no odeur de barf! ........ I'm a proud alumni of the Baja Scorpions. Our 737 jocks were the absolute best and I am here now, due to at least three occasions, where had they not been the best, we would have been part of Paradise Road (now 36 Left at McCarran) - I owe my life to Ralph. We were ready to touch down on 36 and a dust devil formed, picked us up and let the aircraft go over the power lines on Paradise Road. Ralph firewalled that 737, and thanks to an abundance of power and Ralph's skill, he was able to recover - just. Hot day in Las Vegas.

Flight test was days of boredom, punctuated with moments of serious pucker factor. I was in "chain saw" which was flight test control. We could see all of the analog (like control surface deflection and position) and discrete (on - off (like gear position, canopy, etc etc) data off the test bird, or as we call ed it "test platform". Thousands of pulse code modulated (PCM) channels were monitored in real time. If you get to Wright Pat (Dayton Ohio) and go to the Air Force museum. my signature is up there in the weapons bay amongst all the others on tail number 780 (the F-117 - this was a test bird and had non-retractable antennas). All those orange cables under there are telemetry bus cables, and they are everywhere.

I could tell you some stories, of true test pilot "right stuff" - - and sadly some pretty terrible events, that live in my memory. And some really funny stories too...... We had the best of the best of the best test pilots - nothing and I mean nothing rattled these guys. It was a privilege just being a small part of these programs, and knowing these fellers. One of them became I believe the chief test pilot at Boeing who flew the first 777 and 787 flights, another one went on to fly the space shuttle. I got to talk to an SR driver one time, - Oxcart was just winding down - I had lunch with him in the chow hall. He said you could tell you were hauling the mail when you could put your gloved hand up to the canopy and feel the heat through your glove. We worked darned hard and played hard (one time I put cow pies in the doughnut bag for the next shift - they countered by wrapping my crappy government pickup truck in strip chart paper and yellow tape that was equivalent to gorilla tape - and then put a bow on top!) :mrgreen: Those were the best and most fulfilling years of my professional life.

For many many years, I could say nothing, and I couldn't even tell my x husband, or mom and dad, or my siblings what I did, or where I went. They could speculate, and did , but I could neither confirm nor deny. Even talking about what the weather was at work was a no no -even the weather was classified. Nothing was leaked, and Av Leak and Space Technology (Aviation Week and Space Technology) was fed disinformation.

We had an attitude that nothing was impossible if it was required for the mission, and we never ever caused a mission delay, or abort. As far as I know, that record still stands - but then I can neither confirm nor deny :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Flight Testing
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:44 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:09 pm
Posts: 55
Location: Syracuse NY
RedRavenSounds wrote:
Back in the day, I was in flight test, on programs that didn't exist at the time (Senior Trend, and Oxcart to name two mind blowers), at places that didn't exist (love to tell you, have to kill you). Back then I lived in Las Vegas, and flew to work every day on - first - old nasty military versions of DC6's (C-118's) (No air conditioning, hotter than h*ll, and flew right through the chop!!!! - lotta barf'n went on some days - started at the front of the plane and travelled in a wave - and we were all seasoned fliers - sometimes that old rattle trap didn't smell any too nice when the doors were opened on the ramp at McCarran) and then - heaven - the lap of luxury arrived.... 737-200's - white with a red stripe, and blissful air pacs! now we had cool air and no odeur de barf! ........ I'm a proud alumni of the Baja Scorpions. Our 737 jocks were the absolute best and I am here now, due to at least three occasions, where had they not been the best, we would have been part of Paradise Road (now 36 Left at McCarran) - I owe my life to Ralph. We were ready to touch down on 36 and a dust devil formed, picked us up and let the aircraft go over the power lines on Paradise Road. Ralph firewalled that 737, and thanks to an abundance of power and Ralph's skill, he was able to recover - just. Hot day in Las Vegas.

Flight test was days of boredom, punctuated with moments of serious pucker factor. I was in "chain saw" which was flight test control. We could see all of the analog (like control surface deflection and position) and discrete (on - off (like gear position, canopy, etc etc) data off the test bird, or as we call ed it "test platform". Thousands of pulse code modulated (PCM) channels were monitored in real time. If you get to Wright Pat (Dayton Ohio) and go to the Air Force museum. my signature is up there in the weapons bay amongst all the others on tail number 780 (the F-117 - this was a test bird and had non-retractable antennas). All those orange cables under there are telemetry bus cables, and they are everywhere.

I could tell you some stories, of true test pilot "right stuff" - - and sadly some pretty terrible events, that live in my memory. And some really funny stories too...... We had the best of the best of the best test pilots - nothing and I mean nothing rattled these guys. It was a privilege just being a small part of these programs, and knowing these fellers. One of them became I believe the chief test pilot at Boeing who flew the first 777 and 787 flights, another one went on to fly the space shuttle. I got to talk to an SR driver one time, - Oxcart was just winding down - I had lunch with him in the chow hall. He said you could tell you were hauling the mail when you could put your gloved hand up to the canopy and feel the heat through your glove. We worked darned hard and played hard (one time I put cow pies in the doughnut bag for the next shift - they countered by wrapping my crappy government pickup truck in strip chart paper and yellow tape that was equivalent to gorilla tape - and then put a bow on top!) :mrgreen: Those were the best and most fulfilling years of my professional life.

For many many years, I could say nothing, and I couldn't even tell my x husband, or mom and dad, or my siblings what I did, or where I went. They could speculate, and did , but I could neither confirm nor deny. Even talking about what the weather was at work was a no no -even the weather was classified. Nothing was leaked, and Av Leak and Space Technology (Aviation Week and Space Technology) was fed disinformation.

We had an attitude that nothing was impossible if it was required for the mission, and we never ever caused a mission delay, or abort. As far as I know, that record still stands - but then I can neither confirm nor deny :wink:
Great read. Love hearing stories like this. Thank you
Mark

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