Nov 302008
 

Today I actually sold two of my photos, both 36-inch framed panoramas. Sold both of ’em to a neighbor who liked that they were of the local area. Now if I can reproduce that success another, oh, 10,000 times, I’ll be doing ok…

Sold these:

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 Posted by at 1:36 am
Nov 272008
 

The three-engined XB-51 began life in 1946 as the XA-45, which featured two turbojets and two turboprops. While data is currently lacking, this design *seems* to have not only a tail turret, a bombardier (implying an internal bomb bay) and forward-firing – likely traversible – guns on the wingtip pods… but also two guns on the wingtip pods pointed *sideways,* and given aerodynamic fairings over the barrels. The pods seem to have tracks which indicate that the side-guns are also traversible. If this is indeed what they are, the most likely explanation is that the XA-45 was meant to orbit a target and unload fire on it with the side-guns, in much the same way that the AC-130 works.

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 Posted by at 2:40 pm
Nov 262008
 

Don’t have a whole lot on this one… it’s clearly a North American Sabreliner modified for VTOL flight by the addition of four lift jets in the fuselage, two tilting lift/cruise engines near the nose and vectored thrust two lift/cruise engines near the tail. Circumstantial evidence suggests that this was a Fairchild concept, but that’s far from certain.

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 Posted by at 8:51 am
Nov 262008
 

A few years back I went ona  business trip to Kennedy Space Center. While there I got a behind-the-scenes tour of some of the less-seen spots of aerospace interest. By far the most impressive was a tour of the Vehicle Assembly Building… which was all the moe impressive due to the fact that the Shuttle (Discovery, IIRC) was not only inside, but was fully stacked. Got to go up to the 16th level and look right in the windows. Sadly, they disallowed cameras (grumble, grumble…).

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Another spot I saw was the Apollo 1 launch table. This is a forelorn bit of concrete architecture out seemingly in the middle of nowhere; it’s difficult to imagine that at one time an entire launch complex was located here. Something I wanted to make damned sure I got a photo of was the stencilled “Abandon in Place” notice… which I got.

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These photos and more are available at full resolution in the “Kennedy Space Center/USAF Missile Museum” photo set which you can find here:

http://www.up-ship.com/blog/drawndoc/drawndocphotos.htm 

 Posted by at 8:35 am
Nov 262008
 

Canada. Only in Canada. Oy.

According to the Vancouver Sun:

The Carleton University Students’ Association has voted to drop a cystic fibrosis charity as the beneficiary of its annual Shinearama fundraiser, supporting a motion that argued the disease is not “inclusive” enough.

Cystic fibrosis “has been recently revealed to only affect white people, and primarily men” said the motion read Monday night to student councillors, who voted almost unanimously in favour of it. 

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 Posted by at 4:11 am
Nov 242008
 

The SR-71 on display at Hill Aerospace Museum is the trainer version with the raised back-seat cockpit. It’s a nice display, but it’s getting really rather crowded in that facility…

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 Posted by at 9:50 pm
Nov 242008
 

Fun: semi-automatic short barreled 12-guage shotgun with fore and aft pistol grips and a twenty-round drum magazine.

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Dangerous: getting it away from a tempermental cat using it as a pillow.

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 Posted by at 7:44 pm
Nov 242008
 

I am returning CD-ROMs to availability. The delay in doing so has largely been due to the annoyingly slow processes involved:

1) Re-writing the HTML code for the various web pages, for over a hundred items (this has included some price adjustments, up and down)

2) Continued uploading of previously unavailable-for-downloading documents.

The second part there has been a *real* headache; my internet service out here in the Utah sticks is slower’n dirt. Oddly, files that I could download back down from my own server in a few minutes are taking up to six hours to upload there in the first place… so you’ll see some of the larger new items will be broken up into smaller, easier-to-manage files.

I’d hoped to have the revised pages uploaded by this past weekend. Obviously, that didn’t happen. Still, it should happen Any Time Now. I just want to make sure that all the changes are correctly made, and all the documents that I want to make available for download on this go-round are actually properly uploaded.

 Posted by at 11:33 am
Nov 232008
 

Passed by the Snowbird ski resort yesterday. I’ve never gone skiing; seems like a most efficient means to convert your bones into breadcrumbs. But who am I to judge…

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And if you look closely, you can see that someone seems to have just had a little incident…

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 Posted by at 12:47 pm