click map

Help me buy BACON
for the OSH14
Bacon Parties!

Support AirPigz Today

click map AirPigz About mail Robert Clupper

click map 787 Caption Contest CoolPix Homebuilt Military Must See Oshkosh Racing RC Space Video Podcast

click map Perfect Paper Airplane Facebook twitter

Search AirPigz...
Popular Previous Posts




Search AirPigz 1000+ posts





Smart Aviators Always Play Their Cards Right! (The Flight Deck Playing Cards)

The Flight Deck 'Aces' from the blue airplane deck (the red deck is all airships)

'The Flight Deck' aviation playing cards on (ends 4-1-14)

 I'd like to suggest that you run (don't walk) over to the kickstarter campaign for The Flight Deck aviation inspired playing cards and support this unique project. I jumped on the chance to go for the $80 reward which is 2 decks of the blue 'airplane' cards and 2 decks of the red 'airship' cards, plus a fabulous pilot's log book inspired case to store 2 decks of cards. But you can get just a single deck of either style of cards for just $12. These high-quality playing cards are a fabulous way for avgeeks to embrace the rich aviation heritage that came out of the 1930's.

 The project is from Paul Roman Martinez in California. You might already know he's also the man behind The Adventures of the 19xx online dieselpunk style comic series. I know Paul from a small project we worked on together and I must say that he has great attention to detail and he's a really nice guy too! He has a genuine interest in the art-deco inspired aviation world of the 1930's and has some mad graphic skills to boot. The quality of the artwork for The Flight Deck is as-good-as-it-gets in my opinion.

More of the reward options available if you get in on the kickstarter campaign

 The kickstarter campaign just started a few days ago and already it's up to the halfway point of reaching the $27,000 funding goal... I have no doubt this is going to be a wild success! However, I really want YOU to get in on it so you'll be able to enjoy these high quality playing cards. Imagine sharing your love for aviation with your friends and family with these classy made-in-the-USA cards. I believe we should always support people who mix avgeek passion with high quality products.

The 'face cards' from the blue airplane deck (the red deck is all airships)

 So play your cards right my avgeek friends, get in on the kickstarter campaign for The Flight Deck: The Dawn of Aviation Playing Cards. These cards are definitely stacked in your favor : )

'The Flight Deck' aviation playing cards on (ends 4-1-14)



AirPigz Flight 99, Frequency Change Approved - Good Day

The 19 year old me in 1980 (with hair) in my happy-happy-happy place

 Here's the deal: I've put up over 1,300 posts in a little over five years here at AirPigz but I've generated very little revenue for all that work... I'm tired. Very tired. I started this might-make-a-poor-living project while I was as close to bankruptcy as you can get, but fought to avoid that end. The fight was successful, but as previously stated, I'm tired. Very tired. And as it turns out, I can't seem to turn my work here into even a poor living. Fortunately my work as a ceramic tile installer has recovered somewhat after falling off the cliff in 2008, but that work is very labor intensive and it makes me tired. Very tired.

 So I requested a frequency change from the controller (me) and it was approved. I'm not talking radio frequency, I mean posting frequency. In an effort to keep the pig alive, I'm going to change the format to me posting when I have the time, energy, and something very compelling to share. My rather strong 50,000 page views and 35,000 unique visitors each month may drop off wildly, but my push for traffic has always been in the hope that I could use that traffic to generate revenue. Since I have never found a way for that to work out, what does it matter if the traffic drops off.

 Did I mention that I'm tired? Very tired.

 My financial situation has improved significantly in the last five months, but it's all relative. My attempt to get a loan last week for a measly $5K to buy a beautiful Culver Cadet restoration project that was only 6 months of hard work (and an engine) away from being in the air, was denied. It's gonna take a little longer to clean up the last issues of the hardship devastation from the last 5 years, but things are looking up.

 I need to fly.

 So I'm gonna free up some time and passion for finding suitable ways to get myself off the ground regularly now that I have a little cash to make that happen. I'm gonna free up some time and passion to try to push one of my creative make-a-profit projects forward toward success so I can stop being so tired as a tile installer. And I'm gonna free up some time and passion so I can figure out how I can get my butt back into the backseat of a Clipped Wing Cub (or homebuilt version) as soon as possible. The two years I spent as a teenager flying that Cub in the pic above was the best time of my life.

 I'd really like to find the path back there.

 Lastly, I hope you don't mind that I'm taking some time and passion away from AirPigz... for me.



CoolPix: Beautiful Berkut At OSH13... (Remember What Summer Is Like?)

(click pic for hi-res)  Summer, a beautiful Berkut, and Oshkosh 2013. Perfection!

 For those of us who live where winter is wintery, it's been a very wintery winter! In northern Indiana where I live, we've had bitter cold and loads of snow for weeks on end, and it's snowing again this evening. However, the forecast is for above freezing temps for the next several days as winter finally gives us a bit of a break. That gets me thinking about summer, and when I think of summer, I think of OSHKOSH!

 I captured this image of James Redmon's gorgeous Berkut late in the week on Friday when the flightline was showing signs of clearing out, but the extra wide angle lens shows an Oshkosh that's full of life, beautiful clouds and lots of sunshine.

 Ultimately this is another one of my attempts to get you to make plans to be at Oshkosh this summer to experience the world's most amazing collection of aircraft... antiques, classics, ultralights, warbirds, extreme aerobatic, and everything in between. And then there's special attention on the airplanes that have been built by individuals who have the drive and dedication to build an airplane with their own hands. Mix it all up with well over 100,000 of the nicest people on earth and you have the best week of the year, year after year!

Oshkosh 2014: July 28 - August 3



Video: Paine Field 787 Landings... Lots of Them!

 I've been a big fan of the Boeing 787 since the early days of the 7E7, and while the bug-flushing from the program has been very public and teeming with haters, the fact remains that the 787 is a remarkable success already. With 1,031 orders on the books, 121 Dreamliners delivered, and with the production rate up to 10 aircraft each month now, the 787 is pointed squarely at reducing the cost of production and headed toward the break even point.

 The video above is a nice collection of new 787's in various liveries as they operate out of Paine Field during flight tests. In addition to seeing lots of paint schemes, the video is also interesting in that it captures many landings that include having the RAT (Ram Air Turbine) deployed, which can heard sounding like a turboprop airplane is passing by with the 787. The RAT is designed to deploy if power is lost on both engines and it will supply emergency electrical power. It's routine for the system to be tested/deployed during initial flight testing.

 The video can be watched in 1080p HD, and of course it's a lot more enjoyable fullscreen. Enjoy!

Video screenshot: 787 flight testing, including the deployed Ram Air Turbine


Video: Inside Lycoming's Thunderbolt Engines For The 2014 Red Bull Air Races


 I really like the new format in the re-start of the Red Bull Air Races where each race aircraft has an engine and propeller that has been tuned to produce the same performance. For this kind of racing I think putting the emphasis on the pilot's skill is the most interesting way to go. And those standardized powerplants are the incredible American designed and built Thunderbolt customized engines by Lycoming.

 Lycoming has been in the same location since they began building horizontally opposed aircraft engines back in 1929... and hopefully they'll stay right where they are if they remain strong and keep building great engines. It's a really nice American success story.

Screenshot: Red Bull Air Racer and a very hardworking Lycoming Thunderbolt engine 

 The first of the reborn Red Bull Air Races will take place in Abu Dhabi February 28 - March 1 (2014) and from what I can see it will be available to watch on some form of Fox Sports. If I can figure out exactly where it'll be airing I'll post that in a week or so.

Screenshot: Lycoming Thunderbolt engine production in Williamsport, Pennsylvania


Video: Mutant Offspring Of A Super Cub... The Amazing DoubleEnder!

 With me being very busy with day-job work and having ongoing issues with 'focus', I've never posted anything yet about the very unique DoubleEnder homebuilt bushplane even tho I've known about it for since well back into last year. But since it's on the cover of the latest Sport Aviation magazine I figured today was a good day to post a couple videos of this awesome mutant beast!

 As a guy with loads of homebuilt Breezy time, I really like that the pilot sits forward of the wing on the DoubleEnder, even if just barely... especially since a bushplane with enhanced all-around visibility is a really great idea. The DoubleEnder just looks like a really fun airplane to fly, plus you have the added power and safety of being a centerline twin. It'll sure be interesting to see if their goal to eventually make plans and/or kits available is achieved. I'm guessing there's a pretty good Alaska and worldwide market for such a fabulous flying machine. Find out more at

 I can just imagine a 12 seat version with two 600hp PT-6's on it! Maybe a 300 foot takeoff with 5,000 pounds of friends, food and fuel in a built-like-a-tank taildragger. Now that sounds like some serious fun : )

The twin engine DoubleEnder homebuilt bushplane (photo:


Aero Telemetry And Their Dedicated Hughes H-1 Website ( - With Video

The real Hughes H-1 Racer which is now at the National Air & Space Museum

 Aero Telemetry has had some great experience with one of the the world's most amazing aircraft... they built the flying RC model of the Hughes H-1 Racer that was used in the Aviator film, and then they built a museum quality version of the H-1, that also flies, for the AMA 75th anniversary back in 2011. And now the fine people at Aero Telemetry have introduced, a website full of interesting info, images, and video about the real H-1 and the scaled down versions they have Built.

 What else can I say? It's a must-see website and you should go there now!

The big and awesome Aero Telemetry 75th AMA Hughes H-1 flying RC model


Must See GoPro Video: Re-Experience Felix Baumgartner's Jump From The Edge Of Space (Red Bull Stratos)

 This GoPro video was just released on Friday and it's already well past 3 million views... and it's easy to understand why once you've seen it. It's an all-new view of Felix Baumgartner's Red Bull Stratos jump from nearly 128,000 feet above the Earth's surface, and for me it was every bit as intense seeing it from these seven GoPro cameras as it was seeing it live on October 14, 2012.

 I haven't met Felix Baumgartner but I did meet and talk with both Joe Kittinger and Red Bull Stratos Technical Project Director Art Thompson at Oshkosh 2013 and I must say that these men are two of the nicest guys I've ever met. I was very impressed with their kindness as human beings, and would imagine Felix is cut from the same cloth. Knowing that these good people were at the core of the Red Bull Stratos project makes me respect what was accomplished on that day all the more.

 And to quote Felix while standing on the step about to jump: "Sometimes, you have to be up really high... to understand how small you are."  #humility

(more Red Bull Stratos posts on AirPigz)


(click pic to enlarge) GoPro HERO2 HD screenshot of Felix Baumgartner just off the step


CoolPix: Getting Hooked On The F-35

(click pic for hi-res)  F-35B 'short takeoff' from aircraft carrier (photo: LockheedMartin)

 The recent trip to the Naval Aviation Museum didn't include any F-35 spotting at nearby Eglin AFB but I do wish it would have. I didn't have the time or energy to figure out if there was a spot you can hang out where one might be visible. I find myself quite drawn to the airplane these days even tho it's still easy to question whether the program is a good idea... but we are stuck with it at this point so let's encourage those working on the program to succeed!

 I do think there are far too many haters out there that would rather stir up a frenzy than acknowledge that this is one amazing aircraft. And, I suspect the haters are 90 to 100% people who don't know how to engineer an extreme carrier-capable aircraft, they are likely just people who (due to the internet) have a voice and they love to hear it make noise.

 While the CoolPix photo above is from last year showing an F-35B STOVL (short takeoff/vertical landing) making a short takeoff from a carrier deck (note the lift fan doors open and the downward rotation of the aft nozzle) there's an article from the U. S. Naval Institute about how the F-35C (the actual carrier variant) has recently completed shore-based testing of the redesigned hook. Problems catching the wire was an issue that many people made a big stink about, but as is the case when something doesn't work as originally envisioned, you make changes to the design. It's called development and every military aircraft goes thru lots of design changes along the way.

 The internet has made it possible for everyday people to have access to far more info than was ever available when aircraft like the F-14 or B-1 were being developed. The flow of info is great for those with an interest in the work of people handling tasks that are both extremely difficult and vitally important, but it also means that a lot of people who would be better off with their hands tied behind their back have access to the info too.

 Anyway, I hope you enjoy the very cool F-35B pic here and hopefully there will be a video available soon showing the F-35C catching the wire in those shore-based tests. 



Video: Boeings Over Baghdad... Amazing Perspective!

 I've always been interested in seeing things from a different perspective... it's not just a different point of view but it's often a window into a world most people never see. This video of a 747 overtaking a 737 from directly below (from the cockpit of a 777) is such a great example of this.

 According to the youtube description, this was in 2011 over Baghdad, but of course this could happen anywhere on pretty much any day. Tho it's interesting how well the airplanes all lined up, and really cool that Capt Sreekumar in the 777 cockpit had a video camera and the awareness to catch it as it happened. And there's something extra cool about it being three different Boeing aircraft all flying the same line in the sky : )

Video screenshot of the 747 passing the 737 (recorded from the cockpit of a 777)