Tag Archives: biplane

Flight Risk

Lego Technic Boeing Stearman Kaydet PT-17

From the depths of the ocean to the clouds in the sky now, although the route there may have been a little wobbly. This is a Boeing Stearman Kaydet PT-17, the U.S military’s default training aircraft of the 1930s. Flight was a risky business back then, and even more so with a seventeen-year-old student at the controls. This marvellous Technic recreation of the aeronautical equivalent of a driving school car is the work of Flickr’s Mihai Dreve and it’s been built as part of a competition currently underway at Eurobricks. Click here to find out more, and the link above to view the Kaydet PT-17’s complete album.

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Race to Mount Everest

Lego Air Balloon

LEGO’s late ’90s Adventurers series with Johny Thunder was one of this writer’s favourites. What was basically an unlicensed Indiana Jones theme, archaeologist ‘Johnny’ travelled around the world in search of unique and wonderful artefacts whilst trying to outwit his nemesis Sam Sinister and Baron von Barron, all the while being chased by rolling boulders. This lovely flashback to the theme comes courtesy of Flickr’s Markus Rollbühler and Grant Davis who have constructed not only a brilliant hot air balloon and classic bi-plane, but also the backstory to accompany them. Join the adventure by clicking here.

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The Spinning Incinerator

Lego Airco DH.2 Fighter

This odd contraption is an Airco DH.2, an early First World War fighter aircraft designed by legendary aeronautical pioneer Sir Geoffrey de Havilland.

The early years of flight were dangerous ones, with poor pilot training and machines pushing the boundaries of aeronautics almost continuously. This meant a huge incident rate (and the Airco DH.2 gaining the nickname in today’s title), but once the Royal Flying Corps were familiar with the design the DH.2 proved to be more than a match for its German counterparts, being highly manoeuvrable and relatively easy to fly.

The single Lewis machine gun mounted up front originally swung from side to side, but as pilots found it easier to aim  with their aircraft than the gun it became fixed to the cockpit. Behind the pilot was a French 100bhp Gnome Monosoupape nine-cylinder radial engine, mounted there in ‘pusher’ configuration as unlike the Germans the British hadn’t yet developed a synchronisation system to allow a gun to fire between spinning propeller blades.

The Airco DH.2 had a ridiculously short yet successful career, destroying 44 enemy aircraft in The Battle of the Somme. Such was the pace of development in the First World War that just a year later the arrival of new German fighters meant DH.2 was outclassed and replaced by the DH.5, which itself only lasted a single year in combat operation before the S.E.5 arrived to see out the conflict, by this time looking far more like a plane we would recognise today.

This neat mini-figure scale recreation of the Airco DH.2 comes from Henrik Jensen, and it captures the aircraft’s weirdness rather well. With such a short life-span there are no surviving original DH.2s today, so this may be as close as we’ll get to seeing one – take a look at Henrik’s photostream via the link above, or at MOCpages here.

Lego Airco DH.2 Fighter

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Barn Stormer

Lego Plane Barn

A seemingly inevitable fixture in old-timey race movies, a car or plane will crash through a barn and emerge out the other side covered in hay and miraculously unharmed chickens, and followed by a wildly gesticulating farmer. Exactly as per this glorious action-shot by Flickr’s PigletCiamek, who has absolutely nailed it! Click the link above to follow the aeronautical shenanigans!

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Fly Away

Lego Biplane

I wish that I could fly
Into the sky
So very high
Just like a dragonfly

I’d fly above the trees
Over the seas in all degrees
To anywhere I please

The lovely Lego Biplane comes from Flickr’s 6kyubi6. See more here.

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Wings Wednesday

Lego Biplane

This marvellous mini-figure biplane was unearthed by one of our Elves today on Flickr. It’s the work of Luis Baixinho and you can see more here.

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Learn to Fly

Boeing Stearman PT-17This lovely Boeing Stearman PT-17 biplane is the work of mrutek on Flickr, and it’s our second song-titled creation of the day. The PT-17 was designed as a training aircraft for the US military in the 1930s and ’40s, with over 8,000 produced during the period. It’s therefore perhaps a bit of an unsung hero of the Second World War, as it was the tool of choice for training pilots who would later take to the skies to defend the Allies in far more war-like machinery.

Following the war the large surplus of PT-17s were sold to the civilian market, to be used as crop dusters, leisure aircraft, and in aerobatics display teams. As such, unlike many aircraft from the annals of history, many PT-17s survive and are in use today. Perhaps the little biplane, in a roundabout way, has received the recognition it deserved after all.

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