Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Dawn Patrol Rendezvous at the Air Force Museum - Part I

After the football game, my dad and I headed down to Dayton because they had a thing called the Dawn Patrol Rendezvous.  I caught this a couple years ago and was trying to keep an eye out for its return.  As soon as I found out about it, I made plans to catch it.

It turns out that they do this every other year, so they will have another one in 2018.  I will probably go to that one as well.  Basically they have a demonstration of some of the aircraft of World War I and they even have a few of them flying.  They even have a couple of them simulate a dogfight.  If you're an aviation buff, it's worth the trip to Dayton.

I've decided to break this up into three parts so as not to flood each post with too many pictures.

They had three flying demonstrations during the day.  This was the first one.
 The first plane that I ran into was a Sopwith Pup.  The first prototype was completed in 1916 and first delivered to the Royal Naval Air Service.  It was also used by the Royal Flying Corps.  It was a fairly lightweight fighter which gave it a pretty good rate of climb.  By 1917, it was outclassed by the latest German fighters and replaced by the Sopwith Triplanes and Sopwith Camels.  It was later used to test the feasibility of aircraft carriers.
 Next up is another plane.
 This is a Nieuport 17 which was a French built aircraft that first flew in 1916.  It was a very nimble plane that was used by many of the French aces.  It was also used by many of the other Allies because it was a pretty good design.  This particular aircraft is wearing the colors of one of the US Squadrons.
 Another shot of the Pup.
 The Fokker D.VII first flew in January of 1918.  It was a pretty decent aircraft.  It was never flown by Manfred Von Richtofen because he died before it was introduced.  It was flown by other German aces and they quickly racked up victories.  The Germans were forced to surrender these as a result of the armistice.
 I think this is another variant of the Nieuport.
 This is a SPAD XIII and was developed by a French company.  The plane first flew in April of 1917 and came out of the need for an improved airplane design.  It became a fairly successful design but the French couldn't produce enough of them.  This one is painted similar to the aircraft flown by US Ace Eddie Rickenbacker.
 Another shot of the Fokker.
 This is a Nieuport wearing Belgian colors.

 Another shot of the SPAD.
 The American Nieuport.
 The Fokker producing smoke.
 I'd have to say this was probably my favorite plane.
 A pair of planes in a dogfight.

 I kind of like this one too.

Probably my favorite shot of the series.

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