Paul’s Thing

blogprofile The weblog of Paul Woodford, a veteran USAF F-15 pilot living in Tucson, Arizona
August 2015
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Air-Minded: the Curtiss Condor

You could fly coast to coast in 1930, but such the trip entailed a succession of short day flights and overnight train rides. Your flight from New York City to Los Angeles might take four to five days. With the introduction of the Condor in 1933, you could do it in two days and dispense with trains altogether — the Condor’s 12 pull-down sleeper berths meant you could fly by night as well as by day. Of course only the wealthy, untouched by the Depression, could afford air travel of any kind. […]

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Air-Minded: Escaping the Fall of Saigon

One of the volunteers I work with at the Pima Air & Space Museum is a young University of Arizona aeronautical engineering student. His family is originally Vietnamese and I have the impression his father or maybe grandfather immigrated to the USA after the communist takeover. I’m sure there’s a fascinating story behind that, and […]

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Sunday Update

I’m going to put a few freeway miles on the new truck this morning. The one-year-old but new-to-us truck, that is. The original tires didn’t have a lot of tread left so we had new ones put on. Before the new tires, the alignment seemed off: there was a very slight pull to the right. […]

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Air-Minded: Where’s a Black Box When You Need It? (Updated 7/23/15)

In an Air Force pilot’s career there are few tasks harder and more frustrating than trying to figure out how and why a fellow pilot crashed, especially when he or she is so inconsiderate as to die in the crash and either disappear completely or leave very few clues behind that would help others figure out what happened. […]

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Air-Minded: the Non-Starter Option? (Updated 7/23/15)

Fuck stealth. There isn’t an air force in the world that won’t turn tail and run from a wall of Eagles coming its way. […]

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Burning and Turning

The controversial and over-budget F-35 fighter is under almost constant attack. Some of the shortcomings identified by critics are no doubt real, but the story of a previously-unidentified F-35 glitch that emerged last week was, at least to this former air-to-air pilot, a bit of a shock: a report out of Edwards AFB stating that […]

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Thursday Bag o’ Nukes

It’s been extremely hot in southern Arizona. Every day we hear about electric power outages in different sections of Tucson. Are these intentional rolling blackouts? Sure looks like it. So far no power interruptions in our hood, but since our air conditioner crapped out last week and we had to spend a night and a […]

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Let Us Do the Driving

Now I are a tram tour driver and docent at the Pima Air & Space Museum. Over the past two weeks, I:

1) Rode along on a few tours to see how other driver/docents handled the job and to listen to what they had to say about outdoor aircraft on display.

2) Wrote up an […]

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