Download PDF by A. J. Jackson: Blackburn Aircraft since 1909

By A. J. Jackson

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25 All the activities along the route meant that the pilots had little time to rest, plan the next day’s journey, or spend maintaining their aircraft. It was party until late, then up at dawn and take off. At Los Angeles, perhaps believing she was the cause of Phoebe’s bad luck, Estelle ended her stint as Phoebe’s passenger. Phoebe went on alone to San Francisco, with a dogleg over the verdant Imperial Valley for a luncheon stop at Fresno. Getting into San Francisco was uneventful, but getting out was another story.

The Omlies landed in Memphis in late fall, hoping the Mid-South Fair and local exhibitions would provide their last chance to make some money to see them through the winter, but bad weather kept them grounded as their meager funds trickled away. They had to hock their clothes and luggage to the Arlington Hotel where they were staying until they could resume flying and discharge their bill. 1 They talked about settling down. Vernon wanted to make a living from aviation that didn’t involve stunting and daredevil flying.

Unfortunately, often several sets of railroad tracks radiate out from a town making it all too easy to choose the wrong set. This method (known as pilotage) has some obvious disadvantages in remote areas with few landmarks or in inclement weather when limited visibility could be disorienting. In the days before the widespread use of radio or other navigational aids, pilots used “dead reckoning,” an unfortunate term for mathematical calculations based on airspeed, compass heading, elapsed time, and distance, to plot their course to a destination.

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Blackburn Aircraft since 1909 by A. J. Jackson


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