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SCORE!(Warbird ride)

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ramblur, Nov 7, 2009.

  1. Ramblur
    Joined: Jun 15, 2005
    Posts: 2,101


    Man,I'm so stoked I'll never get any sleep tonight.Scored a ride tomorrow
    afternoon in a P 40. In the same seat that "Tex" Hill and other AVG
    Flying Tigers have flown in before me. Never been 200 mph in a piston powered contraption in my life,much less a 1500hp machine. Hats off to Kermit Weeks and his Fantasy Of Flight attraction for giving me this opportunity.

    A little history and a couple of pics from today...


  2. VERY happy for you! LOVE the P-40s and it is nice to see one without the shark mouth too.
    I'd love to ride in one. Several years back on they to one of the Hot Rod power tours, I got a group of friends to go with me to ride in a B-25 at Chino. It was a blast.
    Cool stuff.

    Pontiac/Buick/Olds FALL FEST Sat Nov 28, 2009 Phoenix
    8th annual Nostalgic Show & Go! April 11, 2010 Phoenix
  3. Muttley
    Joined: Nov 30, 2003
    Posts: 18,456


    Wow, that is awesome. For those that dont know who Tex Hill is:


  4. 22dodge
    Joined: Dec 27, 2006
    Posts: 243

    from Nevada

    Awesome, one of my favorite planes....

  5. Welcome to the club Ramblur. Nothing like riding in a war bird. I don't think very many people have ridden in a P-40. That had to be fantastic.
    I got to fly down to an airshow in Cedar Rapids, Iowa in a trainer version of a P-40 with the Planes of Fame back when they were at Flying Cloud air port in Minn. It was awesome. There were 5 fighters and a B-25 in formation flying down.
    Came back in the B-25 after the air show.
  6. Big Tony
    Joined: Mar 29, 2006
    Posts: 3,589

    Big Tony

    Sweet...can't imagine what the day was like....WOW!!! So damn kewl.
  7. wow, thats what my pop fixed , stationed in the marshall islands, with the RCAF.
    He learned to fly them, by just taking them up, after a pilot would tell him what to do, the pilots weren't always sure of the mechanics, so they would say, you fixed it, show me, and my pop would have to take it a loop to show them. Had one of the remaining flying tigers that live in a townhouse just behind my, when I lived in santa maria, back in about 1990, I went with him once to an airshow at the sm airport, when they had an airshow and vintage P-40 fly in, pretty cool guy, was an consultant on the tv show, that peter framton stared in back when. Pretty nice, have a ball.
  8. Ramblur
    Joined: Jun 15, 2005
    Posts: 2,101


    WOW! is about as best as I can describe it.You know I sat here last night for
    more than a couple hours and just couldn't find the words to do it justice.
    Sensory overload with a lasting adrenaline rush I guess. This was a factory
    built trainer with full controls and panel in the rear seat. I hear the starter
    winding up and Kermit holler clear before he engages it.It fires up in less than a full revolution with a puff of smoke from the stacks on each side weaving in
    his open canopy and out mine.This babies not burning pump gas.The panel comes to life.The stick swings in a circle of its full range bumping my legs
    as the rudder pedals do the same.We swing around onto the runway for a
    3/4 mile ride to the end up against interstate 4.The Allison settles into a nice lope as we bounce down the grass strip. Headsets are adjusted and Kermit
    does his best to allay any fears by mentioning he was the only one with a
    parachute on this flight and points out some DOT genius that has installed
    a traffic camera for the interstate dead center of his runway approach. He
    hopes they get tired of seeing his landing gear and will move it. We spin
    around at the end and he brings the revs up some explaining that he was
    bringing the oil temp up.I'm sure he was doing a mag check too but I was
    busy watching the traffic on I-4 stack up as all eyes were on us. I remember pulling harder on the harness straps as he pointed out the
    flap indicator that is located out on the left wing and the landing gear
    indicators which are just rods sticking up out of the wings directly over
    the main landing gear.
    As he swung around to line up on the runway I was sliding my canopy
    forward and making sure it was latched, when his canopy closed I was
    amazed at how much quieter it got but it was not to last.The tach and
    manifold pressure shot up and we were rolling! The tail came up quicker
    than I would have imagined and soon we were airborn. The stick laying over to the right touching my leg again to counter that Allison torque and the
    crosswind I imagine. Right away I can feel gravity trying to pull my ass
    back toward mother earth but it is not to be. We clear the treetops that
    line the runway about halfway down and I see the gear indicator sinking
    into the wing on my right as we go past the hangars. I look to the left
    but that one is already flush with the wing.
    What followed really starts to blur together but the first time he pointed
    the wing toward the ground and I see the stick heading toward my crotch
    it really sucks you down in the seat. We make a half dozen or so passes over the event with the airspeed north of 250.I'm trying to take pictures,
    breath and take it all in. Everytime we come over the edge of the lake
    where vintage boats are racing on course it is rough as hell.The lake is rough the clouds are low we are in the outer bands of this tropical Ida
    deal out in the Gulf. I do my best to imagine what it might have been like
    to see Zeros diving in on me out of the clouds but I'm sure you HAD to be
    there. I remember shortly after the P-40 showed up at Kermits and the
    Flying Tigers had their reunion there.I remember him taking Tex Hill
    and others up for a ride 60 years after they'd done their deal in China
    and wonder who really had the controls that day...We headed out well north of his place and Kermit asked if I was ready for a roll. I think it was
    more of a warning than an option but he probably could have heard my
    "Hell yes" without the headsets on.It was a nice slow roll as the horizon
    spun a 360. We turned around heading back after my "Yee Haaww!" when
    he gave me a heads up for a photo-op 4 point roll. That was quite a bit
    more intense as the horizon swung smartly 90 degrees at a time,looking
    out the top of the canopy at the ground was the best. I failed miserably
    in the camera dept. I probably had a death grip on the shutter button
    during the rolls and while I thought I was getting some video I was getting
    nothing...:( Still,I did manage to get some shots that I will always treasure.
    It was over all too soon but it seemed like we had been up much longer.
    As we headed back out over the interstate I saw the gear indicators
    popping back up out of the wings and the flap indicator coming up. I was
    looking for that damn DOT camera but couldn't see it as he slipped
    sideways with a strong crosswind straightening up the instant before
    he greased it back onto the grass for a world class landing. We taxied
    back to the ramp and climbing out in front of the crowd had me feeling
    a little rockstar ish. At least until two REAL WWII aces with kills in P-40s
    emerged from the crowd and with some help made it over to the plane
    for some pics and Kermit interviewed them and then did a Q&A with the
    THAT! was a ride of a lifetime.








    jakespeed63 likes this.
  9. awesome, and great story, im speechless
  10. Evilfordcoupe™
    Joined: May 22, 2001
    Posts: 1,818


  11. merc-o-madness
    Joined: Aug 23, 2004
    Posts: 1,544


    i didnt know they had 2 passenger p 40s, ur a lucky dude
  12. Derek Mitchell
    Joined: Nov 22, 2004
    Posts: 1,796

    Derek Mitchell

    Someday. I'll go on one.

    Cool story, glad you enjoyed it.
  13. boz
    Joined: Dec 30, 2007
    Posts: 21

    from illinois

    Thanks for sharing. I can't even comprehend how that had to FEEL!!!! WHAT A THRILL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    How did this come to happen??......$$$$$ ?? raffle???........

    Glad yu posted this, I never knew the place existed!!!! Thanks again!
  14. Hackerbilt
    Joined: Aug 13, 2001
    Posts: 6,250


    That last pic just floored me man....
  15. 64Cyclone
    Joined: Aug 30, 2009
    Posts: 1,496


    Congrats on the ride. The P-40 is one of my favs. I just found a NOS clock dial for one and bought it thinking it might make a cool rod clock.


    Here's the P-40 at WPAFB in Ohio

    jakespeed63 likes this.
  16. fab32
    Joined: May 14, 2002
    Posts: 13,985

    Member Emeritus

    I'm envious, what a ride. I had a ride in a B-17 a few years back to experience what my dad did when he was bombing Germany during WWII. Couldn't get the real feeling with no enemy fighters overhead and no flak from below but the experience is one I'll remember for a lifetime. Getting a ride in a P-51 or a P-40 would be frosting on the cake before taking the dirt nap.

  17. Ramblur
    Joined: Jun 15, 2005
    Posts: 2,101


    No $$$,no raffle,just a good neighbor,good karma deal.I operate a RV Park
    next door to Fantasy of Flight so he's been my neighbor for nearly 20 years
    now. I was an aircraft mechanic before I came back to the family business
    so I knew of him from his aerobatic endeavors.He is a great neighbor that
    has some grand plans to inspire and motivate his visitors.
    What I didn't mention before is that for my ride I wore my HambAndy shirt.
    Its the first time I've ever worn it,and in my own way,a way to share the
    adventure with his, and in his memory.I spent the time just prior to my
    flight talking to a couple Civil Air Patrol cadets that were probably close
    to Andys age and can only hope that it was a day that they will remember
    I also want to share a little of what the Roar and Soar event consists of
    and will do what I can to promote a HAMB friendly Rod and Custom section
    next year. Sure its a car,boat,plane show but it has so much more going
    on. RC planes and helicopters,RC truck races, extreme bike exhibitions. There is biplane rides,tandem hang glider rides,powered paragliders,
    live entertainment, a sanctioned slalom course,different speakers in the
    officers club all day and tons of stuff geared toward the kids.














    jakespeed63 likes this.
  18. Constellations! Nothing like the sound of those big P/W radial engines! What a beautiful heavy! I love them all, but Connies have a draw that is really hard to describe.
  19. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792


    Freaking awesome!
  20. I remember that Short Sunderland landing in lake Winnibago coming to the EAA fly-In in Oshkosh.

    It was parked outside the Pioneer Inn for a year or so before it was ferried back down to Florida.

    I've had the opportunity to visit with Kermit on several occasions with a bunch of my Flying buddies and he was always a gracious host.

    Glad you had a chance to ride in a P-40... I've been blessed with many hours of ride time in many Warbirds including P-51's, T-6's, T-28's, T-33's, T-34's, T-37, T-38, 20+ L-Birds,Bombers, Cargo planes, F-4 , F16, F15 but my all Time favorites were the V-12 Powered Fighters!

    I wish there were two place P-38's and P-47s around that I could ride in!

    Now if someone could get a F-82 or P-61 airborne...
  21. TBone69
    Joined: Aug 21, 2007
    Posts: 821

    from NJ


    I spent most of a day at Fantasy of Flight a couple years ago while on Christmas Vacation visting the folks in Tamp.

    Cant wait go back!!! The shop tour was my favorite.

    To see it all I think you need to be there at opening and stay till they kick you out:) Probably need two days.
  22. buckeye_01
    Joined: Jun 20, 2005
    Posts: 1,441


    I can't lie, I'm jealous and envious at the same time! You sir are 1 lucky dude! I loved your story too.
  23. Tony
    Joined: Dec 3, 2002
    Posts: 7,350


    WOW yet again!!
    THANKS for sharing! Although i am by far not a flight kinda person, i admire those early war planes just as much as any hotrod..and the history behind them is extremely meaningful.

  24. tjelwood
    Joined: Jun 27, 2006
    Posts: 164

    from oklahoma

    That it awesome. Makes me wish they still had the airshow in Oklahoma City. I live near the airport and it was always impressive the raw power of those old planes. My brother and I stopped into the Strategic Air and Space museum in Nebraska saturday just to check out their B-17. Our next trip is gonna be to Wright Patterson to see their collection.
  25. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,715


    Cool-neat story too. I got a quickie in a T-6 last year. Nothing like that radial up there shakin and bakin. I got to meet Tex Hill a couple of years ago. Got him to autograph a P-40 model. The Burnet CAF had "his" P-40 for awhile, he was a neat guy.
  26. shoestring
    Joined: Apr 2, 2009
    Posts: 92


  27. Scott K
    Joined: Oct 17, 2005
    Posts: 824

    Scott K

    Way cool Ramblur. I'm an airplane geek, so FoF is on my must do list whenever I'm in Florida. I remember seeing the grand vision for FoF in a magazine years ago. Putting the planes in period buildings and settings would be over the top. Really hope he can get it done in this lifetime.

    It's amazing to think that in a few years, there will be 2 F-82's and a P-61 restored to flight. If only the CAF could get their '82 back from the Air Force.....dirty thieves.
  28. 29nash
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
    Posts: 4,544

    from colorado

    I'd rather get a ride in that '40 than on the Space Shuttle. The ultimate would to get my feet on the pedals, hands on the stick.


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