An old aviation stalwart gets a new lease on life

Readers may remember that in one of my earliest Weekend Wings articles, I mentioned the Antonov An-2 biplane. It first flew in 1947, powered by a Shvetsov ASh-62 radial engine (copied from the US Wright R-1820 Cyclone engine) producing 1,000 horsepower.  It’s believed that over 20,000 have been built to date, including licensed production in China (as the Shijiazhuang Y-5), Poland and possibly elsewhere.  There are still occasional production runs in Poland (using stored parts), and possibly in China too, giving the An-2 the longest production run of any biplane in history.  The basic version can seat up to twelve

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Emergency preparation, Part 10 – lessons from Hurricane Isaac

Hurricane Isaac has spawned several interesting ‘lessons learned’ reports.  To begin with, here’s a news report, obtained courtesy of a link at Rev. Paul’s place. While the nation watches as tropical storm Isaac pounds the Gulf Coast, various agencies are pitching in and providing resources to help the communities. But officials in Alaska know that when natural disaster strikes in the Last Frontier, it will be more difficult for help to come to the state. That’s why the Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is hoping to create the first emergency food supply and storage for the state.

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I’d give him an ‘A’ for effort, but a ‘C-‘ for execution . . .

The only reason Steve Marks isn’t one of our Doofi of the Day is that his marriage proposal succeeded in attracting the desired response.  However, on the way there . . . Mr Marks first arranged for friend Stuart Dawes to leave a hamper, picnic blanket and champagne at The Temple in Stancombe, Gloucestershire – said to be one of the most romantic places in Britain. But things went wrong from the outset when, instead of delivering the couple to a country idyll, their satnav sent them to a retail park in the centre of Swindon, Wiltshire. Lovely. To make

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A nude challenge to political correctness

It seems that Prince Harry’s embarrassment over his, er, over-exposure during a party in Las Vegas is stirring up controversy in the British Army.  It was reported a few days ago that he’d face a ‘dressing-down’ (you should pardon the expression) when he returns to active duty.  Now it seems that others in the UK armed forces aren’t very happy about this – and they’re expressing their support with a bunch of bare-naked royal salutes!  The Telegraph reports: Scores of soldiers and their wives are risking Army anger by stripping off and saluting to show support for Prince Harry, and

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World War II bombs still threaten Europe

Der Spiegel has an interesting report about the controlled detonation in Munich of a US-dropped bomb dating back to World War II.  Unable to defuse a 250 kilogram (550 pound) bomb found buried one meter (three feet) deep at the site of the former bar Schwabinger 7 in the heart of the Bavarian capital, authorities elected to detonate the explosive on site. The controlled blast, finally carried out just before 10 p.m., sent a fireball into the night sky, shattered windows in the vicinity and resulted in several small fires on surrounding rooftops. Nobody was hurt. “Almost all the window

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More about ACORN’s resurgence

Last weekend I mentioned that the defunct ACORN (the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), which had ostensibly closed up shop in 2010 after numerous scandals, had in fact been succeeded by over 170 splinter groups and descendant organizations that were continuing its nefarious work. More information is now emerging about the ongoing and terminally poisonous pollution of America’s body politic by politically, racially and socially polarized hard-liners.  HotAir’s Green Room has a report drawing on various sources of information, including Judicial Watch‘s excellent report ‘The Rebranding of ACORN‘.  Both resources are well worth your attention. I’m neither Republican

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