Thursday, August 16, 2018

A Nickel Ain't Worth A Dime Anymore - Yogi Berra

Nicekels may not be worth a dime, but this particular one is worth a lot more than a dime, in fact, it just sold for 45,000,000 dimes.

Photo taken by Heritage Auctions - Provided by Heritage Auctions with permission, CC BY-SA 3.0,

The Detroit News: Rare nickel sells for $4.5 million at auction

Stack’s Bowers Galleries sold the Eliasberg 1913 Liberty Head nickel Wednesday night during the American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money at the Philadelphia Convention Center.

It is named for financier Louis E. Eliasberg, who bought the coin in 1948 and amassed one of the greatest coin collections in U.S. history. The Eliasberg 1913 Liberty Head nickel is one of only five ever produced and is considered the finest-graded example of its kind.

The sale set a new record price for 1913 Liberty Head nickels.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

An Extra Fine Performance By The Phillips 66 Aerostars

After the Pitts did a solo aerobatic display and the Hooligans did a formation display, it was time for The Phillips 66 Aerostars and their formation aerobatic display.

It was Extra fine as they were flying Extra 300s and taking them to the limit.

A tight formation.

More tight formations.

Then they flew a loop while in formation.

Then two of them did some aerobatics, including crossing over each other.

It was a heckuva display of daring combined with exacting performance, coordination, and control.

They then finished by peeling away and landing with perfect equal spacing one after another.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Great Scott! - The Aerobatics of Dave Scott at OCIA 2018

The Pitts Biplane is an aerobatic beast, with power to spare for crowd-delighting performances.

Dave Scott knows how to really wring out the performance of a Pitts and he did so at the airshow.

His routine began with a hangar-height pass down the runway.

Then up into a loop.

It's not an aerobatic performance in a Pitts unless you do tricks inverted:

Hammerhead stalls, loops, knife-edge pases, barrel rolls, and spins thrilled the crowd.

A great performance.

Monday, August 13, 2018

The Hooligans

We ran into the Hooligans on the ground at the restaurant at Jackson on Saturday, and they were present on the ground and in the air at the OCIA airshow.

Flying T34 Mentors in both Air Force and Navy colors, the Hooligans put on a great demonstration of formation flying.

A formation takeoff started their demonstration:

The fourth plane in the team then joined up and the demonstration of various formations began.

They did a variety of formations, ending with the missing man formation in honor of Martin J. Tibbits.

The Hooligans put on a great aerial demonstration.

Whistling Death - The F4U Corsair

N179PT is a 1948 manufacture Chance Vought F4U-5 that was one of the featured draws to the OCIA Airshow.

With an 11:1 kill ratio, she whistled death onto the Japanese in the Pacific, and unto the North Koreans and Chinese in the Korean War.

With power to spare it took off with plenty of runway remaining.

The he took the pane through its paces.

The frontal view is very distinctive,

The Corsair is both highly maneuverable and fast.

A Corsair coming around to your six was the last thing many an opponent ever saw.

After quite a number of low passes, he landed smoothly.

The folded up the wings and taxi'd off the runway.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Oakland County International Airport Open House And Airshow 2018

It is airshow season here in Michigan.

Today I went to Pontiac Airport and attended the annual open house and airshow and brought my camera along.

 Lots more to follow.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Flying - Leah's First $100 Burger

This morning the forecast improved dramatically, so much so that it was time to take Leah for her first $100 burger.

Winds promised to be light, clouds higher than the MVFR forecast last night and all was set to go.

We headed out tot he airport and I showed her my new (to me) plane.

I called for fuel form the FBO and did the preflight. Doing so I saw that one of the tires was a bit low, and checking the pressure showed that it was indeed low, so I used the club's air compressor to add air. I then added too much as its a ridiculously powerful compressor unit, and had to drain it back to spec. With that done, I added a quart of oil and everything else was ready to go.

After the fuel truck came and filled the tanks I got us started and ready to go.

We flew to KJXN, the same sport I had gone last weekend with Peter as its a ncie easy flight and great for her frst ever cross-country and landing at a different airport.

For my birthday, I had requested as a present a headset so my passenger could ride in comfort. I got her a Kore Aviation P1 as the rental Dave Clarks were giving her a headache when I was flying with her using the DCT aircraft.

This time the headset was pronounced to be very comfy. Audio quality was excellent and for the price you can't beat it. I expect to get more as mthe rest of the family finally sees the light and joins us in the plane.

We flew to Jackson with no problems, getting as high as 4,500. There was a little haze but it wasn't a problem.

We passed by, but not over, the prison.

Jackson tower had us do a straight in approach for runway 25 and then we headed to the tarmac, which was quite crowded.

Lots of T-34 Mentors. The Hooligans were in Jackson for lunch.

We headed in and they were at a table all in matching shirts having lunch. We ordered the $100 Burgers and proceeded to have a fine lunch.

A nice bunch, they're going to be performing at a local airshow, of which more will be blogged later.

Then we headed back to Pontiac.

A very smooth flight back, we did it in 12 minutes less than the ride out.

Tower had us enter the downwind for 27L and as they did last week, then they had us extend the downwind for traffic and then had us cut a long base to 27R and I made just a superlative landing. I mean it was just perfect, Leah complimented me on it highly, especially as she thought initially from the approach angle that I would land in the grass in front of the runway. Instead it was a perfect landing - right on the numbers going from flying to rolling sublime kind of landing.

Then we headed back to the hanger, wiped the plane down and got all the bugs off and put it away.

Another perfect flight, and a great experience for her first trip.

1.5, 2 landings, and some great burgers.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Canada Keeps Drinking The Politically Correct Kool-Aid

Imagine cities taking down statues of George Washington in America because he was found to be offensive when weighed against modern sensibilities. No daring to talk about the vital role he had in the founding of his nation.

That's what Canada is doing - taking down statues of their first prime minister- the man that brought Canada together.

The GLobe and Mail: Victoria to remove statue of Sir John A. Macdonald

A statue of Sir John A. Macdonald is set to be removed from the steps of Victoria’s City Hall this weekend, as communities across the country struggle to reconcile the legacy of the country’s founding prime minister with his treatment of Indigenous people. The plan to remove the statue, which easily passed a city council vote on Thursday, follows year-long discussions with two local First Nations who argued the statue has become a painful reminder of colonialism. But it has also inflamed a debate about whether historical figures should be judged through a modern lens, and how to weigh abuses against Macdonald’s role in shaping the country.

Yes, to assuage leftist white guilt, the founder of their nation is being removed from the public square.

Personally I think all those Canadians who are Offended by John A. Macdonald should reach into their wallets and send me all their $10 bills that bear his likeness. I'll give them a good home and honor Sir John A. accordingly.

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Over Halfway to 90

Today is my birthday and the rugrats helpfully pointed out that at 46, I'm past the half-way point to 90.

They are so helpful that way.

The birthday began with the traditional cheesecake for breakfast.

Somewhat non-traditional form the standard cherry, but they ahd just gone peach picking and it was combination time. It still tasted great. Heretical mind you, but great.

Then birthday cards:

This card sadly didn't contain money, but did have nice sentiment from Abby and good flying advice from Leah:

Remind me not to fly near the Andes, especially after she has watched a documentary on Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571. Kids these days.

Then it was off to two different courts for some arguments on behalf of my clients and its been a busy day.

I figure I'll wrap up and head home, plans for a nice dinner celebration is apparently in the works.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Not Sure That's The Slogan You're Looking For

Seen on a van this morning:

I don't recall anyone being enthusiastic when asked "Want to eat out? I know a place, but its a real roll of the dice."

Maybe it's something lost in translation, but advertising street food by telling prospective diners to roll the dice and dine may cause people to be a little apprehensive about trying it.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Singapore's Navy Museum

It's been a year since I visited Singapore, and I've realized I neglected to post quite a few of the places I visited there.

One area that stands out is Singapore's Navy Museum.

Singapore's lifeblood is the shipping trade. An island nation,it has one of the busiest ports in the world. With such a symbiotic relationship to trade, its no wonder they have a substantial navy to protect it. Adding their rather interesitng neighborhood and the presence of pirates, their navy is indeed necessary.

It's also quite a powerful one in terms of overall capacity and for such a small nation.

The Navy Museum is located on an active naval base. It is a secure location, so if you wish to visit you need to bring your passport.

On checking in at the front gate, I and my friends from Singapore presented our IDs and signed in, and we were issued visitor's badges.

We were told to keep them on and visible at all times. Given the rather serious sentries at the entrance we certainly didn't argue.

We also received an escort - a sailor serving on one of Singapore's amphibious assault ships who had injured his ankle on duty got the job of taking us from the main gate to the museum. A nice young fellow doing his mandatory service, he enjoyed chatting with us on the way to the museum and asked that we not take photographs of the base, but only in the designated museum area and we happily complied with that request. He then got to kick back and relax as we toured the museum, and we were allowed to wander around it at our leisure unescorted.

The museum is three stories indoors as well as some outdoor displays.

As you enter you see models of Singapore's naval vessels, both past and present. Like all the museums in Singapore I visited, it is not very well lit. most likely this is to save on air conditioning costs and keep the interior cool, but it makes photography a bit difficult.

There's a variety of informative signs about navy life.

There's a whole wall of knots used in the naval service.

Multiple historic photographs of early and present Singaporean navy life.

A description of readiness conditions aboard ship.

If you've ever wondered what all those colored flags on a navy ship mean, wonder no more:

There's also quite a display of guns.

From a Bofors single mount:

To weapons seized from the Vietnamese boat people when their boats were boarded as they reached Singapore's waters.

I'm sure there's quite a tale as to how the boat people acquired these firearms in the first place.

That's an Australian L1A1 complete with functioning happy fun switch (I checked), an Ithaca 37 shotgun (interestingly it was the only one of the three firearms that was deactivated with its barrel cemented shut), and a Long Branch manufactured Lee Enfield No4. Mk.1.

Look how they identified the Enfield:

I mentioned the error to the museum's curator, and they're going to fix the label accordingly.

If missiles are your thing, they have those on display as well.

Then outside there's even more to see. A variety of weapons from decommissioned ships are on display.

There's also full scale mock-up of a conning tower from a Challenger-class submarine. Yes, Singapore currently operates two different classes of diesel submarines.

There was lots more to see and do at the museum and lots of interesting exhibits and artifacts. After we finished, our escort took us back to the main gate where we handed in our badges and got our identity documents back.

The takeaway from the museum is the Singapore has a surprisingly large and very capable navy that is well suited for protecting Singapore's interests in the region and its lifeblood, maritime trade.