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Cattail4
12-26-2004, 02:25 PM
OK maybe it's me but is anyone else having trouble getting the Corsair off the deck of a carrier?? I am using the same takeoff procedure I've used since the bm(pun intended) patch. Now it seems my favorite AC's engine has been replace with a aircooled VW engine. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Why can't they just leave well enough alone, since we can't have any new Corsairs why pray tell, castrate the ones we do have.

S! Cat

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 02:25 PM
OK maybe it's me but is anyone else having trouble getting the Corsair off the deck of a carrier?? I am using the same takeoff procedure I've used since the bm(pun intended) patch. Now it seems my favorite AC's engine has been replace with a aircooled VW engine. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Why can't they just leave well enough alone, since we can't have any new Corsairs why pray tell, castrate the ones we do have.

S! Cat

Maple_Tiger
12-26-2004, 02:32 PM
Even the F4F has been porked. Both of them can only take off with 25% fuel and no bombs or rockets lol.

Even the P-47D will not take off from the carrier. It did before. However, the P-51D with 50% has no problom taking off lol.

SgtBriggs
12-26-2004, 02:48 PM
im having the same problem, i just cant keep from plunging right off the bow the the ship. whats up with this????
it also seems that the low speed handling is way different too..tried to land and woops....crashed, or dropped out of the sky on approach.

fordfan25
12-26-2004, 03:06 PM
yes i think some one has over done things.

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 03:08 PM
Well let's hope they can get this fixed with patch 3.04. The original 3.0 Corsair was abit over the top. 3.01 porked it good, but thankfully the bm patch brought it back to close to the 3.0........Now it seems we are back to the underpowered 3.01 version. I hope they can get this squared away before support ends for PF. I can't even imagine how one could get a fully loaded Corsair off the carrier even if the carrier was moving fast enough to pull barefoot skiers..........lol

westcoastphil
12-26-2004, 03:13 PM
Corsair is porked off a stationary carrier. All loadouts, all fuel selections http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_mad.gif
Don't even think about using it online.

macd1102
12-26-2004, 03:17 PM
i had intended to practice carrier landings but for the last 2 hours cant get airborne, nothing was mentioned in the readme

JaBo_HH-BlackSheep
12-26-2004, 03:40 PM
AFAIR the CORSAIR SHOULD NOT be able to take-off loaded from a static carrier.
that's why they carriers were driving against the wind and full speed when the fighters were taking off......

westcoastphil
12-26-2004, 03:44 PM
You can't take off with it unloaded and 25% fuel. Basically this kills flying a Corsair online off a carrier.

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 03:45 PM
OK, that may be true, but since many of us fly this SIM in dogfight servers, this change takes away the use of carriers as bases, since you cannot have moving carriers in those types of servers, thus eliminating any carrier borne aircraft from carriers.......and here I thought thats what PF was all about.......silly me.

ColoradoBBQ
12-26-2004, 04:03 PM
No problems taking off in a fully fueled 3.03 Corsair from the static Lexington carrier. Keep flaps in take off position and switch to landing flaps when you reach the edge.

Ala11_Kal
12-26-2004, 04:05 PM
Realism vs Gameplay. To be or not to be, again.

Don´t think a fully loaded Corsair IRL could take off from a static carrier.

And yes, you can take-off on-line with 25% fuel.

"3.03-Corsair" is OK for me on this matter.

VBF-83_Hawk
12-26-2004, 04:06 PM
F4U excel has been porked

clint-ruin
12-26-2004, 04:12 PM
http://www.vectorsite.net/avf4u.html

Experiments were performed in 1944 with an old F4U-1 with "jet assisted take-off (JATO)" gear, featuring a small solid-fuel rocket attached on the fuselage just behind each wingroot, to allow the Corsair to get off the ground more easily with heavy loads, but it appears that JATO was rarely, if ever, used in service with the Corsair.

http://www.vought.com/heritage/photo/assets/images/db_images/db_0426_056.jpg

I bet there were more takeoffs with JATO than Go229 flights :>

JaBo_HH-BlackSheep
12-26-2004, 04:26 PM
just tested, got a 50% fueled F4U from the Intrepid not taxiing to the back (starting close to the center of the carrier...)
if you take the lex/sar it should be possible with some rockets and 50% i think.

ICDP
12-26-2004, 05:07 PM
I can take-off in an F4U1 from the CVE in the take-off mission with 50% fuel every single time. Considering that you are all comlaining about DF servers then it should be no problem since noone ever takes more than 50% fuel.

Basically what I am reading is that you want these planes to behave totally unhistorically. You want to take off from a STATIONARY carrier with ZERO WIND with an F4U1 loaded with full fuel and bombs/rockets. Leave the planes alone, they are modelled correctly. The problem lies with the stationary DF carriers, ask if this can be fixed or use the Lexington class CV's but leave the FM alone.

For reference the take-off run in the F4U1D in calm conditions is 653 feet at a gross weight of 12175 lb. With the addition of an external 150 gal drop tank the take-off distance was 840 feet.

GRYPHON_401Cdn
12-26-2004, 05:18 PM
I have just tried the F4U-1D and the Corasir 4 with 25% fuel and nothing else off the Lex and got away both times. And landed. In fact, the landings seem easier. Remeber to pitch the nose up and raise the gear as you leave the deck

VF-29_Sandman
12-26-2004, 05:19 PM
corsair take off protocol here:
http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums?a=tpc&s=400102&f=63110913&m=7251037652

ElAurens
12-26-2004, 05:24 PM
USS Lexington, CV2, OAL 888ft.

USS Essex, CV9, OAL 876ft.

USN CVL class, flight deck length: 552ft.

So, what's the problem again?

ICDP
12-26-2004, 05:27 PM
I'm not sure there are CVL's, there are CVE's (Cassablanca class) with a length of 512 feet. Also considering that most take-off start from about 1/5th to 1/4 of the way from the back of the carrier a lot of that length is wasted.

ElAurens
12-26-2004, 05:31 PM
My bad on the CVLs... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/35.gif

But my point remains. The F4U is now correctlly modeled. At least in this aspect. Hopefully is totally bogus antigravity feature will be gone too.

ThreeCrow
12-26-2004, 06:05 PM
Is this an on-line problem or does it effect all. I found that with the Lex in the FMB, Corsair/F4F (early) in the default deck position and full fuel (only...no loadout)twenty kph headwind, both will take off and land without undue gymnastics. In fact I made (luck)the best Corsair arrest I ever made... it looked like I knew what I was doing (I had just read Tsiqua's carrier landing thread).

Corsair did seem a bit sluggish but I do not fly it that much anyway so I have really no correlative.

MiszaNC
12-26-2004, 06:27 PM
After the 03 patch F6F and F4U are much less vigorious on take-off roll, they accelerate much slower. It considers F4F as well but much less. Nevertheless it is still not too hard to take-off with one additional tank (and land as well). As far as landing there is an extra sound when tailhook catches the wire, nice little touch and I like it! However planes are still too much bouncing ionn the deck during landing. I was in F4U in very, very flat final just above the deck and landed with 150mph on thre points and boom, the plane just jumped some 2 meters into the air. In general landing is a bit better modelled that in 02 patch but still needs less bounsing and to be shorter after wire catch for F4U and F6F, in my opinion.

Knighthis
12-26-2004, 08:42 PM
If you cycle the wheel chocks off and on you will slowly bounce backwards to the stern end of the flight deck. This gave me the extra room I needed to get the Corsair D off the deck.

(Engine off of course)

Bunny

mortoma
12-26-2004, 08:46 PM
Well you guys are onto something because I just tried to continue a career in a Corsair Mk.IV and could no long take off from the deck with ordinance. Whereas before this worthless patch I had no trouble. Great, not only is my frame rate worse than ever before but I can't take off from the HMS Illustrious going 27 knots through the water!!! And all I have loaded is 2 500Lbers!!
In this career, every other mission has had me flying off to dump two 500lbers on an enemy air target. And yes, you guys are right about Oleg making this change without telling us or mentioning in the readme file. I'd rather them shove the F2A-2 and get my frame rates back and my ability to contiue on with my Corsair career!!! Here's part of the mission below. I'd like to see anybody get this Corsair off the deck with full fuel. All you have to do is paste it to a notepad doc and then change it to a .mis extension, then put it in Missions folder and play it in FMB.

[MAIN]
briefSound samples/sounds/CarrierUSA3.wav
MAP Okinawa/load.ini
TIME 13.75
CloudType 1
CloudHeight 1400.0
player 706sq00
playerNum 0
[Wing]
706sq00
[706sq00]
Planes 2
Skill0 3
Skill1 2
pilot1 US_21.bmp
Class air.F4UCORSAIR4
Fuel 100
weapons 2x500
[706sq00_Way]
TAKEOFF 148581.38 -898.16 0.00 0.00 7_Chief 0 &0
NORMFLY 143599.00 -478.78 400.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 145727.00 -5003.34 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 148581.38 -898.16 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 120678.65 17341.30 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 113702.97 21901.16 500.00 400.00 &0
GATTACK 105332.64 27372.68 500.00 400.00 239_BlueStatic 0 &0
NORMFLY 113519.25 30099.55 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 121705.86 32826.43 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 146265.69 41007.04 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 170825.51 49187.66 500.00 400.00 &0
NORMFLY 179012.12 51914.54 500.00 400.00 &0
LANDING 187198.73 54641.41 0.00 0.00 7_Chief 0 &0
[Chiefs]
6_Chief Ships.USSFletcherDD445 1 0 0 5.0
7_Chief Ships.HMSIllustriousCV 1 0 0 5.0
8_Chief Ships.HMSIllustriousCV 1 0 0 5.0
9_Chief Ships.HMSPoWBB 1 0 0 5.0
10_Chief Ships.HMSPoWBB 1 0 0 5.0
11_Chief Ships.USSKiddDD661 1 0 0 5.0

mortoma
12-26-2004, 08:54 PM
Another thing is most of you guys are only worried about online play but many of us fly offline in career. And you have to be able to take off from a moving carrier with full fuel and two bombs, maybe more. I can no longer do this, not even at full steam. The Corair is no longer accelerating fast enough before it gets to the end of the deck. So for offline play it's totally porked and unrealistic. A Corsair could easily take off from a moving carrier in RL with two bombs and full fuel.

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 09:00 PM
Well I was able to take off of a static carrier online, I had to taxi to very rear of the carrier....(look out for landers and respawners......lol)

oh and the cycle chock trick only works in coops on a moving carrier, doesn't do anything on a static one.

Well this is what we need to hear that this aberation be it realistic or not makes for one big pain in the rear for both online and off. Hopefully the powers that be will hear our forks being banged on the table and fix it.

Cat

VF-29_Sandman
12-26-2004, 09:36 PM
dont count on it. the 38 didnt get anywhere near the climb rate it has now from the time aep came out untill pf. and if u want to talk about a porked plane, the jug was the king of pork from version 1.0 to about 1 or 2 patches before pf came out. start experimenting and learning proper procedures, or in the drink u go. if the corsair is too hard for u, then fly a real man's plane....p-38's. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/34.gif

BlitzPig_DDT
12-26-2004, 09:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Cattail4:
Well I was able to take off of a static carrier online, I had to taxi to very rear of the carrier....(look out for landers and respawners......lol)

oh and the cycle chock trick only works in coops on a moving carrier, doesn't do anything on a static one.

Well this is what we need to hear that this aberation be it realistic or not makes for one big pain in the rear for both online and off. Hopefully the powers that be will hear our forks being banged on the table and fix it.

Cat <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It IS fixed (at least in this aspect). If you don't care about realism, try something other than sims. Or at the very least flying w/air starts online.

As suggested, the "problem" is static carriers, not the plane.

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 09:54 PM
Blitz&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt; you don't get it do you? and probably never will.........oh well........did you bother to read the problems "others" were having? No, not surprised...

Stanger_361st
12-26-2004, 09:56 PM
Some interesting read at this link about carier landings and take offs from a real pilot.
http://www.b-17combatcrewmen.org/fredblechman.htm

Finally, after 13 years of dreaming about becoming a Naval Aviator and earning my "Wings of Gold," this was my "final exam." Making six arrested carrier landings in an F4U-4 Corsair would earn me my gold wings and Ensign's commission. I had no idea I was about to crash.

It had been almost 21 arduous months since I had entered flight training. I had over 200 hours in SNJs, six arrested carrier landings in an SNJ, then over 200 hours in Corsairs. Now, getting ready for Corsair carrier qualification, I had made 91 field carrier landing practice (FCLP) approaches and landings at Bronson Field near Pensacola. Just six carrier landings in a Corsair and I would "graduate."

So here I was, at about 9AM on August 10, 1950, flying F4U-4 Corsair #80893, together with five other students and our instructor, heading out to our carrier in the Gulf of Mexico off Pensacola. We rendezvoused with the light carrier U.S.S.Wright (CVL-49) as it churned at approximately 25 knots through the waters near Pensacola, Florida. The sea was calm with only occasional whitecaps from the gentle breeze. The azure sky was punctuated with random cotton balls. All was serene. Life was good. This was the day I'd been waiting for through so many episodes of "trial and terror."

Our flight received a "Charlie" landing clearance, formed a right echelon, and streaked upwind by the starboard side of the ship at about 800 feet as we peeled off to establish our landing intervals.

This was busy-time. Wheels, hook, flaps, power settings, trim, setting the beam position and interval while headed downwind, turning toward the carrier at the proper position, losing altitude, losing airspeed, spotting the landing signal officer (LSO), responding to LSO signals, adjusting bank and nose attitude...busy, busy time.

This was the real thing. There was no way we could accurately simulate landing on a moving carrier with those FCLP hops at Bronson Field -- but they were the best means available to practice flying low and slow, follow the LSO's signals, and set the proper speed and attitude for a carrier approach in the "Hose Nose" Corsair.

My first four landings were normal, with no waveoffs, as we each in turn made our landings and takeoffs. After catching a wire, the barriers were dropped, and we made a deck-launched takeoff. But I was getting tired, and my light summer flight suit was drenched with sweat. I had no way of knowing that the next landing, #5, was going to be very different...

"Only two more landings to go," I thought as I prepared for my deck launch. With a ten-knot surface wind and the carrier's forward speed, the wind over the deck was approximately 35 knots. The takeoff should be easy. I checked various settings. Full flaps. Cowl flaps open. Hook up. Trim 6 degrees nose right, 1 degree nose up, 6 degrees right wing down. Tailwheel locked. Cockpit canopy open and locked. Shoulder straps and seat belt tight. Prop control full forward for maximum revolutions per minute (rpm). Mixture auto rich. Supercharger neutral. Wings locked. Controls move freely.

I watched the Launch Control Officer to my right give me the windup signal with his right arm as he pointed to my engine with his left arm. I advanced the throttle to 42 inches of manifold pressure and applied full toe brakes by pressing down the tops of the rudder pedals. At above 44 inches the wheels would start slipping on the deck, so full power could not yet be used. I held the joystick all the way back to keep the tail from lifting up and possibly digging the tips of the 13-foot four-bladed propeller into the wooden flight deck.

The 2100 horsepower Pratt and Whitney R-2800-18W(C) Double-Wasp 18-cylinder radial engine roared and the whole airplane shook with anticipation as I verified proper engine readings and signalled I was ready with a head nod. (I dared not let go of the stick for a right hand salute, or the tail could come up!) The Launch Control Officer threw his arm forward with two fingers extended, the signal for me to release the brakes and take off.

Surging forward, the Corsair picked up speed and rumbled down the deck. I added throttle to full power -- approximately 54 inches of manifold pressure -- and held a lot of right rudder to counter the torque of the huge engine and propeller sticking out 15 feet ahead of me. Releasing back stick pressure, the tail lifted and I could finally see where I was headed. I aimed for the right side of the deck, lifting off easily before the ship slipped behind, with nothing but rippling water beneath me. A slight right turn cleared my slipstream from the plane landing behind me, as I climbed ahead of the ship at 125 knots to the 800-foot pattern altitude. Since I was just going around to make another landing, I left the flaps and wheels down. At pattern altitude I reduced the throttle setting to 34 inches of manifold pressure, set the propeller to 2300 rpm, and reset the trim tabs for neutral stick pressure.

About a mile ahead of the ship I made a 180-degree left turn, descending to 200 feet for the downwind leg. I dropped my tailhook, unlocked my tailwheel, and set myself up approximately 3000 feet abeam of the ship, fast approaching on my port side as it steamed upwind.

Landing #5

The plane was flying smoothly with the canopy open and locked. The hot Gulf air and the roar of the engine blustered in from both sides of the windshield. Everything in the cockpit seemed A-okay, warm and comfortable as an old shoe as I watched the ship slip past my nose and toward my left wing.

As the straight deck of the light carrier Wright steamed upwind and its wake appeared ahead of my left wingtip, I banked sharply toward the ship's stern and began slowing the airplane down to an approach speed of 90 knots. Check flaps down, wheels down, hook down, tail wheel unlocked. I shoved the prop control forward for full rpm and reset the trim tabs to takeoff settings in case of a waveoff. I set my rate of descent to about 150 feet per minute, maintaining just enough throttle to hold the nose up approximately 15 degrees, hanging on the prop.

I checked my altitude by seeing where the clear, flat horizon crossed the ship's mast above the bridge, since that indicated exactly how high I was above the deck. At approximately the 90 degree position on the base leg I picked up the LSO with his colored paddles on the port fantail. Now the challenge was to keep the ship from getting ahead of me, since it was churning away from me at roughly 60 feet per second (including the surface wind that was trying to drag me even further behind). I watched the horizon crossing the bridge for altitude, and carefully controlled the power and nose attitude for holding around 90 knots -- just a few knots above stalling!

I used a simple technique to properly intercept the ship. I put the left side of the Corsair's nose on the center of the deck at the aft end -- and held it there! If I tried to judge my turn any other way I would invariably get sucked back behind the ship with a straightaway to catch up -- but then I'd lose sight of the LSO under the Corsair's long nose.

There was no luxury of any significant straightaway in landing on those old straight-deck carriers when you were flying a long-nose Corsair in a nose-up attitude. You just couldn't see ahead of you -- only off to the side. We essentially pyloned counter-clockwise around the LSO in order to keep him in sight!

As I got close in, I tried to keep the nose aimed toward the ship's centerline. This was not only affected by the ship's forward motion, but also by the wind over the deck. This wind was seldom straight down the deck, but approximately 15-degrees to port so the turbulence from the ship's stacks and bridge did not appear in the flight path of the landing planes. This made for a very tricky approach and last few seconds...

At this slow speed, just a few knots above stalling, it took a lot of right rudder, even though in a left turn. And you didn't dare add power quickly since the powerful engine turning that large prop could make the aircraft roll uncontrollably to the left -- the dreaded "torque roll."

It took a lot of back stick, considerable power, and right rudder to hang in there. As I approached the ramp in a left turn, the LSO's paddles and my own perception was that I was drifting to the right of the deck centerline. Too much right rudder. I cross-controlled a bit and slipped to the left just as I approached the ramp, and got a "cut," the mandatory command to cut my power and land.

"Ah, landing number 5," I thought as I relaxed, dropped the nose, and pulled back to drop the tail so my hook would catch an early wire. But I relaxed too soon! Perhaps I was more tired than I realized, but my wings were not level, and I didn't pull back soon enough. The left main gear hit first, blowing the tire, and the plane bounced back in the air. At this point the tailhook caught the #3 wire and slammed the Corsair back on to the deck. On this second impact the left wheel strut broke and the right tire blew out!

I was thrown with more force than usual against my shoulder harness as the plane tilted to the left and settled on the deck. The carrier crash horn blew. Deck hands, some carrying fire extinguishers, came scampering up from the catwalks and surrounded the airplane. Controlled pandemonium reigned as I was quickly unbuckled and helped out of the cockpit, since fire after a crash was always a danger.

A Corsair zoomed overhead taking a "fouled deck" waveoff. It was Midshipman John A."Jack" Eckstein, my roommate(on left of photo with me) and good friend through most of flight training. He told me later he was so shaken by my accident right in front of him as he was making his approach for his fifth landing that it took him several more passes to get in his last two landings. (He got his wings, stayed in the Navy, and retired as a Captain.)

I was not injured at all -- except for my pride. But I was very concerned about being washed out of flight training, shattering a 13 year dream -- and with only one landing to go! I had special reason to be concerned since I had my only previous accident just three weeks before when I torque-rolled a Corsair on a waveoff during my first field carrier landing practice flight at Bronson Field, and crumpled the left wing. No personal injury there, either, and a Student Pilot Disposition Board allowed me to continue training.

Disposition Board - Again!

Now I had to appear a second time before the Student Pilot Disposition Board to determine if I would get washed-out, or would get the chance to make that one remaining landing (the crash counted as #5) to get my wings. Was it my unblemished record prior to three weeks earlier, was it my sincerity and obvious strong desire to become a Naval Aviator, or was it the fact that North Korea had invaded South Korea a month or so before, and the Navy was calling up the Reserves and anticipated the need for more pilots? Whatever the reason, I was awarded some additional field carrier landing practice and another try for that last carrier landing!

Five days after the crash I climbed aboard the same Corsair, #80893, now with new tires and a new port landing gear strut, and made five field carrier practice landings at Bronson Field, and was considered qualified to make that last arrested landing needed to get my wings. Three days later, on August 18, I walked aboard the U.S.S. Wright in port at 6AM. The carrier steamed out into the Gulf of Mexico for that day's carrier qualifications.

Landing #6

The first flight of Corsairs appeared at 9AM and began their qualification landings. The first to complete his six landings was NavCad Vince "Rick" Ricciardi, whom I'd known since pre-flight. I congratulated him as he climbed down from his Corsair, #97168, and I clambered aboard. I strapped myself in with the help of a plane captain, checked all the power and control settings, and deck launched. One landing to go.

This was it! If I had too much trouble getting aboard, or crashed again, it was certain I would be washed out. The takeoff and downwind leg were normal, but as I made the approach I got more tense than usual as I considered the consequences of failing. This probably made me concentrate more than in previous landings, since I got a "Roger" flag signal from the LSO all the way into the cut, and caught the #3 wire. I did it! I had qualified to be a Naval Aviator!

The ceremony for commissioning as Ensign, and receiving the "Wings of Gold," was held at Pensacola on August 23, 1950. My mother flew in from New York to pin on my wings and bars. I've never done anything more difficult -- or of which I'm more proud -- than earning those gold wings! And after over thirty arrested carrier landings, I learned to drive a car...

************************* SIDEBAR **************************
Flashback - First Try

I was six years old in 1933 when I went up for my first $5 plane ride over New York City. It left me with an indelible impression of all those little houses, little cars, little roads, plowed fields, and tiny, tiny people -- and how the whole world twisted and turned as the pilot maneuvered the airplane. I loved it! However, it wasn't until 1937, at age ten, at a Navy airshow with fat, gray-and-yellow Navy biplanes, that I decided I was going to be a Navy pilot!

After eight years of building model airplanes and devouring flying magazines, my chance came in July of 1945 when I joined the Navy V-5 program as an Apprentice Seaman for four semesters of college training in uniform before entering flight training. Finally, in August of 1946 I became an "AvCad," the term used at that time for Aviation Cadets. After eight flights in an N2S Stearman "Yellow Peril" in Dallas, Texas, I successfully soloed on September 16. Then it was on to pre-flight training at Ottumwa, Iowa.

But World War II was over, downsizing was in place, and we were given the option to sign up as Midshipmen for four more years under the Holloway Plan, or go back to civilian life and complete our college education under the G.I.Bill. I got out.

Second Try

However, I maintained contact with John Higson, who had stayed in the program, and heard about the "Ab Initio" (From the Beginning) program my former classmates were beginning at Cabaniss Field in Corpus Christi. They were starting out in SNJs as the primary trainer instead of the Stearman -- and I would have been in the first class to do this! This drove me nuts. I haunted the Navy recruiting office trying to get back into Navy flight training. It took two years, but in November of 1948 I got back into flight training and headed to Pensacola for pre-flight. This time we were called "NavCads," a new designation that officially began on June 22, 1948 with a new Navy flight training program.

I completed pre-flight at Pensacola, then basic flight training in SNJs at Pensacola (with six arrested carrier landings on the U.S.S. Cabot (CVL-28) on 23 March, 1950), advanced flight training in F4U-4 Corsairs at Cabannis Field in Corpus Christi, and then back to Pensacola for Corsair carrier qualification. Oh, by the way, being a city-boy, I had never learned to drive a car, but I was flying Corsairs!

This is the first chapter of my new book, "Bent Wings - F4U-Corsair Action & Accidents: True Tales of Trial & Terror!" This 400-page book has 43 chapters by myself and nine other former Corsair pilots, 23 accident reports, 20 photos and illustrations, and 3 appendices. It will be available in March at www.xlibris.com (http://www.xlibris.com) or toll-free at 888-7XLIBRIS, printed and softcover bound for $15 plus $4.95 shipping. No sales tax.

*********************** BIO ********************************
Ensign Fred Blechman was immediately assigned to VF-14 (Fighter Squadron Fourteeen), the "Tophatters," flying F4U-5 Corsairs in the Sixth Fleet. He made two Mediterranean cruises with VF-14 until he left the Navy in late 1952 as a Lieutenant (Junior Grade). He later attained the rank of Lieutenant after several years in the reserves. Since 1961 he has since written over 750 magazine articles and seven books about electronics, microcomputers, and flying.

to see more Pics from the book

BlitzPig_DDT
12-26-2004, 09:56 PM
Talk to me about reading when you learn to read and decipher something as simple as a name.

Your veil hides nothing. Your plane has been fixed and now you are crying about it. Deal with it.

Cattail4
12-26-2004, 10:00 PM
LOL, whatever piggy......

BlitzPig_DDT
12-26-2004, 10:08 PM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/34.gif

mortoma
12-26-2004, 10:14 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BlitzPig_DDT:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Cattail4:
Well I was able to take off of a static carrier online, I had to taxi to very rear of the carrier....(look out for landers and respawners......lol)

oh and the cycle chock trick only works in coops on a moving carrier, doesn't do anything on a static one.

Well this is what we need to hear that this aberation be it realistic or not makes for one big pain in the rear for both online and off. Hopefully the powers that be will hear our forks being banged on the table and fix it.

Cat <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It IS fixed (at least in this aspect). If you don't care about realism, try something other than sims. Or at the very least flying w/air starts online.

As suggested, the "problem" is static carriers, not the plane. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Well Pig, try taking off from the HMS Illustrious going 50Kph ( 27 knots ) and with full fuel and two 500 pounds bombs. If you mean to tell me that in real life Corsair pilots could not take off from the Illustrious with full fuel and a light bomb load, then I have to say I don't believe you. Because I'd bet they did it in real life easily. A fully fueled Corsiar with only 1000 pounds of ordinance would not be challenged to get off from the Illustrious.

mortoma
12-26-2004, 10:28 PM
I just noticed that the AI Corsair wingman in my flight can't make the take off on the Illustrious either. That should prove something is wrong. We should at least be able to take off from moving carrier with 1000 pounds or less and full fuel. I can see how if we load the Corsair to the gills we might not be able to make it but not with 1000 pounds or less. The Corsair after all, can be loaded with up to 2500 pounds of stuff. But we should be able to handle 1000 measly pounds of ordinance.

VF-29_Sandman
12-26-2004, 10:57 PM
if u read that rl pilot report, he dont mention anywhere about them just pullin the chocks away. he's standing on the brakes. that might be ur problem. dump the chocks and stand on the brakes on throttle up

ICDP
12-27-2004, 03:09 AM
Mortomo,

Your mission does not include a carrier, I added in the Illustrious and gave it a speed of 50kph. The speedbar shows as 40kph but I was still able to take off with 100% fuel and 2x 500lb bombs and so was my wingman. I then edited the carrier speed to maximum (56kph) and retried the mission with 100% fuel, 2x 500lb bombs and 8x HVARS. Once again I was able to take off and so was my wingman. It really is difficult with the HVARS also loaded but it is possible, with just the bombs it is not that difficult. It is important that you practice and develop the correct technique.

The Illustrious is an excellent choice for these tests as it has very clear markings on the deck showing take-off run distances. The take-off distance in PF from this mission is 500 feet, the take-off distance in an F4U-1D with 2x1000lb bombs and full internal fuel is 501 feet. I tested this mission with 2x 1000lb bombs and was able to take-off after some practice and my wing man made it every single time.

If you wish to see the traks I made of these three take-offs I can e-mail them to you.

It seems that results are better if I use take-off flaps until I reach the catapault then drop landing flaps, this gives an extra 10mph extra speed. Again I am not claiming that it is easy but then again it shouldn't be.

ICDP
12-27-2004, 03:36 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BlitzPig_DDT:
It IS fixed (at least in this aspect). If you don't care about realism, try something other than sims. Or at the very least flying w/air starts online.

As suggested, the "problem" is static carriers, not the plane. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

DDT,

It seems I owe you an appology. I was convinced that the F4U was pretty much spot on in PF. It seems that the low speed handling pre 3.03 was still slightly optimistic, thanfully Oleg has saw fit to fix this area of some aircraft FM's. Hopefully it is the start of a trend where the arcadyness is gradually removed from PF.

Abbuzze
12-27-2004, 04:10 AM
Hmm just tested it, (Carrierstartmission No.1) with the corsair D, 100% fuel, no Problem even from this small carrier... you have to practice more guys http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

ICDP
12-27-2004, 04:25 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Abbuzze:
Hmm just tested it, (Carrierstartmission No.1) with the corsair D, 100% fuel, no Problem even from this small carrier... you have to practice more guys http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

No problems here either, 100%, F4U1D, CVE take-off mission 1.

It seems that rather than practice some people would rather have Oleg make the sim unrealisitically easy.

PF_Coastie
12-27-2004, 05:26 AM
I took off easily in a "C" model with 50% fuel and 3 500lb bombs. Carrier was doing 40kts. I was continueing a carreer and also dropped my bombs and proceeeded to shoot down 5 zekes! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

So, whats the problem?

I believe some people are going to get a wake up call in DF missions. This is a problem. Without a catapult system, taking off from a static carrier should be VERY difficult with most planes.

ElAurens
12-27-2004, 05:33 AM
From the F4U-1 Operators Manual

Take Off Distance @ Sea Level with 0 wind.

@ 11,700lbs gross weight: 680ft. (Longer Than a CVE)

@ 13,100lbs gross weight: 910ft. (Longer than any carrier in game)

@ 14,200lbs gross weight: 1110ft. (Longer than any carrier in game)


Be sure.

sapre
12-27-2004, 05:36 AM
I can takeoff from moving(56kmh) Illustrious with 100% fuel, 8 HVAR and 2 500lb bomb.
It's a bit difficult, but still possible with take off frap, 110% throttle, 120 fuel mixture, 100% prop. pitch with locked tail-wheel.
I think these people need more practice.

Edit:
not take off fraps, landing flaps.

Raptor_20thFG
12-27-2004, 08:19 AM
I have no prolems taking off with the Corsair

ZG77_Nagual
12-27-2004, 09:23 AM
Thanks Elaurens. Oleg has explained that the more realistic takeoff distance is a function of improving the accuracy of climb and other factors. Pretty cool! http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

ElAurens
12-27-2004, 11:01 AM
It is a good thing. Carrier ops are NOT EASY. Not in real life and not here. As it should be.

Here are the T.O. distances at the same weights as I posted above, with a 30 knot head wind.

11,700lbs. 260ft.

13,100lbs. 380ft.

14,200lbs. 480ft.

Fliger747
12-27-2004, 12:05 PM
The 'no wind over the deck' problem is an absurd one, but one that originates from limitations in the sim engine. Real carrier ops from any CVE in a no wind situation is a no win situation..... Even steaming at full bore (18 knots) turned out to be a fiasco in the Med off of Italy. Photos I have seen ofthe F4U operating from the CVE showed full deck length operations wiht the conga line of planes with folded wings taxing back along the starboard side and taking their turn at a full length run. The alternative was a cat launch, which was SLOW.

cow_9th
12-27-2004, 01:35 PM
no problems here either, realism in a "sim" is always a step in the correct direction.
hopefully the arcade whiners wont win this time, finally this is becomming a simulation again.

westcoastphil
12-27-2004, 03:26 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by cow_9th:
no problems here either, realism in a "sim" is always a step in the correct direction.
hopefully the arcade whiners wont win this time, finally this is becomming a simulation again. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I take it you don't fly online?

Voidable
12-27-2004, 04:25 PM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif ok here we go again...we are talking about online you have to taxi to the end of the deck to take off.....The F4U was powered by a Pratt & Whitney 18 cylinder radial engine with a displacement of 2,804 cubic inches developing 2,000 horsepower. At this time, this was the most powerful engine ever in a fighter plane. To optimize the engine's power, it was equipped with a Hamilton Standard Hydromatic 3 blade propeller measuring 13 feet 4 inches in diameter. with that kinda power it should have more acceleration ..the **** plane would bounce around just idling

ICDP
12-27-2004, 04:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Voidable:
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif ok here we go again...we are talking about online you have to taxi to the end of the deck to take off.....The F4U was powered by a Pratt & Whitney 18 cylinder radial engine with a displacement of 2,804 cubic inches developing 2,000 horsepower. At this time, this was the most powerful engine ever in a fighter plane. To optimize the engine's power, it was equipped with a Hamilton Standard Hydromatic 3 blade propeller measuring 13 feet 4 inches in diameter. with that kinda power it should have more acceleration ..the **** plane would bounce around just idling <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Your point being?

HERE WE GO AGAIN, THE F4U CORSAIR IS FINE, IT IS THE STATIC CARRIERS THAT ARE THE PROBLEM. IT IS NOT POSSIBLE TO TAKE OFF IN ZERO HEADWIND WITH EXTERNAL ORDNANCE, IT WASN'T POSSIBLE IN REAL LIFE AND IT SHOULDN'T BE POSSIBLE IN PF. TAKING OFF FROM A MOVING CARRIER (CV AT 56KPH) IS PERFECTLY FINE AND IT IS POSSIBLE TO TAKE-OFF WITH FULL FUEL AND 2X 1000LB BOMBS WITH 8X HVARS.

I shouted the last paragraph BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT GETTING THE ****ING POINT.

Athosd
12-27-2004, 04:42 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Fliger747:
The 'no wind over the deck' problem is an absurd one, but one that originates from limitations in the sim engine. Real carrier ops from any CVE in a no wind situation is a no win situation..... <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Nail on the head Fliger747 - the modelling of aircraft may now be more accurate, but the lack of atmospheric modelling (specifically wind - which carriers always turn into to launch/retrieve aircraft) - makes things artificially difficult under certain circumstances.

Salute

Athos

ElAurens
12-27-2004, 04:52 PM
Voidable, what is it about the take off distance vs. gross weight figures I posted that you don't understand? These figures are taken directly from the Pilot's Operating Manual for the US F4U-1, FG-1, F3A-1, and British Corsair I, II, and III, series aircraft.

These are the real world numbers.

BuzzU
12-27-2004, 04:52 PM
I'm not saying the plane is right or wrong. I've never flown one.
I would like some of you to try the single mission track on full tanks.

You might also try the second version too. It has some AI in front of you. None of them make it. I don't understand that one.

Mast54
12-27-2004, 04:55 PM
I don't think the problem are the planes F4U, F6F, it is trying to take off of a STATIC CARRIER. And it is not impossible, you just need to taxi to the back of the carrier and don€t take a load out.

It is not an easy pill to swallow when it worked just fine yesterday and today it doesn€t in the name of improvements. I agree the plane sets are nicer when they are close to the true performance.

If the powers that be would be so kind as to give the DF map users a moving carrier this would be a moot point.

And for the jocks that can take off of the moving carriers, we are so proud of you!!

Masty

VF-29_Sandman
12-27-2004, 08:15 PM
carrier ops were the most difficult things in ww2. a wind across the deck was manditory. when the doolittle raid was suggested, there were those that said that bombers would never be able to launch from a carrier. they barely made it off.

either start learning proper procedures for takeoff's, or demote urself down to a wildcat. sounds like u dont have what it takes to be a corsair pilot. change ur tampon. oleg finally got the corsair to more historical performance.

Papa_K
12-27-2004, 08:40 PM
Haven't done any acceleration tests, but I can say that you'd have better luck taking off from a carrier in a Beaufighter with 3.03m -- it acclerates quite nicely by comparison.

Papa_K

DangerForward
12-28-2004, 12:07 AM
America's Hundred Thousand lists the takeoff distance with no wind full fuel and ammo load as...

F4U-1(early) - 12676 lbs - 750 ft.
F4U-1D - 12289 lbs - 840 ft.
F6F-3 - 12213 lbs - 950 ft.
F6F-5 - 12482 lbs - 780 ft.

We really need to ask for catapult systems, without it it's like playing an electric guitar without an amp...

fordfan25
12-28-2004, 12:14 AM
guys try this for me. go into a quick mission. test with 100% fuil at defult flight alt.. try a corsair and hellcat. fly at full throttle and note how long it takes you to reach top speed or close to it. now try the same thing in a p47. iv noticed it takes more than twice the distance and time to reach a close top speed in the sair than the p47.

Cattail4
12-28-2004, 10:49 AM
BUMP

ICDP
12-28-2004, 12:27 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by fordfan25:
guys try this for me. go into a quick mission. test with 100% fuil at defult flight alt.. try a corsair and hellcat. fly at full throttle and note how long it takes you to reach top speed or close to it. now try the same thing in a p47. iv noticed it takes more than twice the distance and time to reach a close top speed in the sair than the p47. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I have taken your challenge http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif, I have adjusted the parameters somewhat. My tests were conducted under the following conditions:

Crimea map, noon, 100% fuel.
Take off from airbase at full throttle + WEP if available and maintain 100m altitude. I started timing at 150mph and took further timings at 200mph, 250mph and 300mph and tested the following aircraft:

F6F-5, P51D20. Fw190A5, F4U1D, la5-FN, P38J, P47D27, Bf109G6, Spitfire IXc and Fw190A4.

Note - the first time is how long it took to accelerate from 150-200mph.

F6F-5
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.85
250 | 24.17
300 | 61.72

P51D20
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 10.06
250 | 24.72
300 | 49.57

Fw190A5
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.73
250 | 23.74
300 | 46.33

F4U-1D
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.79
250 | 22.39
300 | 45.57

La5-FN
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 7.09
250 | 17.85
300 | 35.85

P38J
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.93
250 | 23.79
300 | 48.11

P47D-27
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.61
250 | 23.25
300 | 45.18

Bf109-G6
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 8.62
250 | 22.36
300 | 50.25

Spitfire IXc
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 8.83
250 | 20.39
300 | 45.39

Fw190A4
Spd.|.time (seconds)
----------
200 | 9.79
250 | 23.94
300 | 55.02

As these tests show there is not a significant difference in acceleration from 150mph to 250mph between most of the aircraft but gaps are forming. The only trange numbers show up with the La5-FN, don't try and out accelerate one of these babies http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

From 150 to 300mph is a different story, the F6F-5 and Fw190A4 are a fair bit slower to reach this speed than the others, the 109G6 is also lagging behind slightly. The rest of the aircraft are pretty close apart from the La5-FN again. I don't have relative power to weight ratios at hand for thes aircraft but I do know the F6F was a heavy fighter and had quite high drag compared to the lighter/sleeker fighters.

The acceleration is fairly close until the slower aircraft start reaching 300mph as they are getting fairly close to SL top speed so acceleration starts to drop.

I am not claiming these number are correct but Hope this little test is of some use http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Old_Canuck
12-28-2004, 12:42 PM
No problem taking off with 25% fuel on static carrier LEX. Will start increasing loads and see where the fail point is. Like .. take off eh (http://www.woodbuddies.com/PF/SairStaticCarrier3.03.ntrk)

If there's any online squadrons practising during this time slot (10AM - 1PM PST) I'd like to give it a try some time.

BSS_Vidar
12-28-2004, 12:44 PM
The BSS has a dedicated DF CQ mission which has a spawn deck on the Lex, and just to the south, a Essex class to practics coordinated carrier ops. The Corsair with 25% gas and no weps will not make it off the deck from a spawn spot, even with landing flaps. However, IF you taxi back all the way to the fantail, chalk it, then run it up to max, you'll make it.

What does this mean if you have a deck full of people spawning in?

Either respot on the deck to allow each pilot to have full run of the flight deck, or the two guys spotted at the fantail will be the only ones to get airborne. In a PF server on line... Corsairs have been takin' out of the game using carriers in a DF server. This issue needs attention in the next patch.

ICDP
12-28-2004, 12:50 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BSS_Vidar:
The Corsair with 25% gas and no weps will not make it off the deck from a spawn spot, even with landing flaps. However, IF you taxi back all the way to the fantail, chalk it, then run it up to max, you'll make it. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I was spawning of a Japanese carrier in a DF today, 25% fuel and was taking off no problems (F4U1A).

Tvrdi
12-28-2004, 01:01 PM
this game/sim (with every new patch) is closer to the real simulator...learn to live with this fact and practise...

BSS_Vidar
12-28-2004, 01:59 PM
Great going ICDP, but just one little tid-bit. The Akagi had the longest flight deck in WWII. Try if off a U.S. flight deck (from a spawn spot) http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Tvrdi, Flight sim? not even close. This is a PC game. My 3000 hrs of actual flight time and countless hours in certified flight sims backs that up. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/10.gif There is so much wrong with even the basics of flight in the GAME. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

ICDP
12-28-2004, 02:13 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BSS_Vidar:
Great going ICDP, but just one little tid-bit. The Akagi had the longest flight deck in WWII. Try if off a U.S. flight deck (from a spawn spot) http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif


Tvrdi, Flight sim? not even close. This is a PC game. My 3000 hrs of actual flight time and countless hours in certified flight sims backs that up. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/10.gif There is so much wrong with even the basics of flight in the GAME.http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Just back from F16_dedicated server, was able to take off from the Saratoga with 50% fuel in a Corsair Mk II http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

It is also enlightening to hear from a highly experienced pilot regarding sims. I love sims and want them to be as real as possible but I'm willing to bet there isn't a single person on this forum who could fly a real WWII warbird and live to talk about it. It doesn't mean Oleg should throw in the towel and stop trying though.

BlitzPig_DDT
12-28-2004, 02:35 PM
The thing is though, people have said repeatedly that their sim time (PC sims) has helped them complete their training for their real license.

I'll go back to an old example - Manfred von Richtofen had about 24 hours of training from being a cavalry officer. Flying kites that were almost as dangerous to the pilot as to the enemy. That were a hell of a lot more difficult to fly than WWII planes for a myriad of reasons.

Nobody spent 600hours teaching the Wrights to fly.

Kids with barely 10 hours were being thrown into late 109s. Yes, many perished, but *not all*.

It's not that difficult. Most time spent training is relating to procedure and protocol, weather, emergency procedures, navigation, and for war piltos, combat training. But we are talking about just taking a plane out in calm wind in good weather and vis. And while some who claim to be pilots will disagree, many who claim to be pilots do agree. Ask 100 people, get 100 answers....

The real danger any "old hand" from this series would face is feeling over confident and pushing things way too hard and getting into real trouble. We have a luxury none of those pilots did - to learn the razors edge of the envelope because "death" is just refly.

VF19_POP
12-28-2004, 03:17 PM
wellll..won't argue 'bout a loaded Corsair not getting off a static carrier...otherwise, try this...FULL flaps..full power..stick forward to get tail up off deck..release chocks....don't be http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif heavy handed with stick as you pass over end of deck and raise gear. works for old guys in dogfights.

Old_Canuck
12-28-2004, 04:43 PM
Just made it off a stationary Lex. with 50% fuel and rocket load. Had to give up the 2 500lb. bombs though (it was a bit hairy landing with rockets and bombs but doable): Track. (http://www.woodbuddies.com/PF/SairRockets50Fuel.ntrk)

VF-29_Sandman
12-28-2004, 07:12 PM
vidar, ask vf-29_gull for a few tracks of how he gets it off the carrier. he's found that NOT using the chocks and standing on the brakes during throttle up works alot better.

stelr
12-28-2004, 08:14 PM
Maybe it's me, but is anyone able to T/O with 50% fuel from an escort carrier? I'm using 110% throttle, T/O flaps, tail wheel locked, chocks and brakes...let it wind up for a bit, then chocks away, brakes off and...

like on old milk cow leaving the barn, she ambles slowly down the deck and ultimately into the drink.

Now I'm no avionics expert, but I believe it should be able to T/O from an escort carrier since the carrier qualification trials for the first F4U-1s were off the escort carrier USS Sangamon Bay, on 25 September 1942. And before anyone says...but it failed didn't it...yes, but not due to T/O problems. The problems poor pilot visibilty during landings and "stiff" landing gear that caused excessive bounce on landing.

As I said, I'm no expert, and will defer to those here that are, but I just want the plane to do what it could historically.

If I'm wrong...well, it won't be the first time. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

BSS_Vidar
12-29-2004, 02:26 AM
I flew some DF servers last night and have not had a problem.

Nice pic in the MiG-21. Wonder if they ever disarmed the ejection set... You may have been lucky.

stelr
12-29-2004, 09:10 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BSS_Vidar:
I flew some DF servers last night and have not had a problem.

Nice pic in the MiG-21. Wonder if they ever disarmed the ejection set... You may have been lucky. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

You're right Vidar. I've often thought about that day and how God must protect the idiots. When I was climbing out, a Redhorse guy (Airforce airfield engineers) drove up on the hardstand 25 meters away and yelled to me that the area all around that junk had not been de-mined yet. Needless to say, I tiptoed back in my previous tracks. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/351.gif

A few months later when I was in Iraq, one of our units came across a few Iraqi SUs sitting on the airfield in perfect condition. A sergeant was climbing out of the cockpit when the ejection seat went off. He and his buddy were burned pretty badly. Both lived though.

Guess we all have a case of the dumb*** every now and then. The lucky ones tell stories about it over a beer and the unlucky ones get nominated for the annual Darwin Award.