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Wonders of World Aviation

Part 3

Part 3 of Wonders of World Aviation was published on Tuesday 22nd March 1938, price 7d.

This part included a central photogravure supplement showing the flight over Mount Everest which illustrated the article Over Everest By Air.

The Cover

There are no editorial notes about this cover, which shows a biplane performing aerobatics.

Wonders of World Aviation part 3

Contents of Part 3

Round the World in Eight Days (Part 2)

The Art of Aerobatics

Over Everest By Air

Over Everest By Air (photogravure supplement)

Homing Radio

The Father of British Aeronautics

Sizes of Civil and Military Aircraft

The Caterpillar Club (Part 1)

Aerobatics in Formation

AEROBATICS IN FORMATION, with streamers of coloured smoke tracing each evolution against the sky. For many years this was one of the most popular items of the RAF display at Hendon, Middlesex. The camera has caught the aeroplanes as they climb on the first part of a rocket loop. The leader of the formation sets the pace; the others watch him and take no notice of the ground.

(Page 70)

Click on the icon to see a British Pathé newsreel clip of the RAF air display at Hendon in 1937.

The Art of Aerobatics

Evolutions that increase flying skill and safety. Aerobatics are the airman’s punching bag; they make him fit to fly and they keep him fit to fly. Aerobatics provide valuable aid in the perfection of flying technique, and no pilot can reach the highest point of flying skill without a full knowledge of the art. This chapter is by Major Oliver Stewart.

(Pages 67-72)

You can read about Formation Flying in part 10.

Homing Radio

A directional device for guiding pilots to airports. A form of directional radio known as “homing radio” has been developed for use in aircraft, and on introduction was termed the Marconi-Robinson Homing System. It derives its name from the attributes of the homing pigeon. This chapter is by Arthur Clark.

(Pages 84-88)

Over Everest By Air

Photogravure Supplement

INFRA-RED PHOTOGRAPH of the peak of Makalu taken from more than a hundred miles away. The summit of Everest was concealed behind a bank of cumulus clouds. The photograph was taken during the second flight to Everest on April 19, 1933.

(Page 77)

Over Everest By Air: Photogravure Supplement

APPROACHING EVEREST on April 19, 1933. The long plume, known as the rafale, distinguishes the summit of Everest. The peak of Makalu, which is twelve miles from Everest, can be seen behind the rear wing strut. The angle of the wings shows the strength of the drift due to a high wind velocity of about 110 miles an hour. The clouds are at a height of 18,000 feet.

(Pages 78-79)

Over Everest By Air:

Photogravure Supplement

OVER THE SOUTHERN PEAK,  about three minutes’ flight from the summit of Everest. The photograph was taken from the Westland Wallace, and shows the Houston-Westland aeroplane. A thick blanket of cloud which stretched to within about fifteen miles of the foot of Everest prevented measurement of the drift. The aeroplanes were thus carried farther west than had been intended.


(Page 80)

The Father of British Aeronautics

The first scientist who paid serious attention to the problems of mechanical flight and who tried to explain in mathematical terms the fundamental principles of mechanical flight was Sir George Cayley (1773-1857). He was born in 1773, and his interest in aeronautics was inspired in his boyhood by the Montgolfiers’ achievements with the balloon. This chapter provides a biography of Sir george cayley and was written by H G Castle. It is the second article in the series on Makers of Air History.

(Page 89)

DESIGN FOR A NAVIGABLE BALLOON produced in 1816-17 by Sir George Cayley

DESIGN FOR A NAVIGABLE BALLOON produced in 1816-17 by Sir George Cayley. The balloon was based on the Montgolfiers’ hot air principle. It was 300 feet long, 45 feet high and 90 feet wide. Driven by a steam engine, the balloon had a possible speed in still air of fifteen miles an hour.

Round the World in Eight Days (Part 2)

One of the most outstanding flights of recent years was that of the Winnie Mae, a small monoplane in which the late Wiley Post and Harold Gatty flew round the world in eight days sixteen hours. This chapter is by L H Thomas, and is concluded from part 2. It is the first article in the series Great Flights.

(Pages 65-66)

Inverted Flying

INVERTED FLYING has a technique of its own. When the pilot ha become accustomed to the upside-down position, however, he can fly in that position for long periods and can perform all the normal flying manoeuvres.

(Page 67)

Col. Charles A. Lindbergh

FOUR TIMES A CATERPILLAR, Col. Charles A. Lindbergh. All four emergency descents occurred before Col. Lindbergh won renown for his solo flight in May 1927 across the Atlantic. On two of the occasions, on March 6 and on June 2, 1925, he was a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Corps reserve Officers. His other two descents were on November 3, 1926, when he was an air mail pilot.

(Page 91)

The Sizes of Civil and Military Aircraft

THE SIZES OF CIVIL AND MILITARY AIRCRAFT vary considerably according to the purposes for which they are designed. For purposes of comparison, examples of some of the main types are given in this diagram, which shows the plan and elevation drawn to scale. Approximate dimensions in feet can be ascertained by reference to the scale in the top right-hand corner of the diagram. The wing span of the Short Empire transoceanic flying boat, for instance, with the scale, shows this to represent about 112 feet, which is within 2 feet of 114 feet, the actual length of this aircraft. Similarly, the overall length of the Handley Page Heyford night bomber is shown to be 56 feet.

 (Page 90)

The Winnie Mae

ON THE FLOODED LANDING FIELD at Edmonton, Alberta, the Winnie Mae landed after the 1,300-miles trip from Fairbanks, Alaska. To ensure a good take-off for the last lap of their flight, Post and Gatty had the aeroplane towed into a main road, from which the machine successfully took off. On their way to New York they made a brief stop at Cleveland, Ohio.

(Page 65)

Aerial Equipment on the Hengist

AERIAL EQUIPMENT on the Imperial Airways liner Hengist. The loop aerial used for direction-finding radio is mounted above the nose of the fuselage. The aerial is used also for homing radio in conjunction with the trailing aerial. When the machine is in flight the trailing aerial is lowered from a tube projecting below the fuselage. This tube is seen directly below the door and behind the pitot-static tube of the air speed indicator.

(Page 41)

The Winnie MaeInverted FlyingAerobatics in Formation

Over Everest By Air

How British aviators turned an ambition into a triumphant reality. The idea of flying over the summit had attracted many pilots, but for long their ideas remained mere dreams. No engine was capable of lifting an aeroplane to such an altitude in such conditions. The day came, however, in 1932, with the production of the first models of a new experimental engine - the Bristol Pegasus. It was not long before at least one man realized that the Pegasus was an engine that would turn dreams into reality. This chapter is by L H Thomas and tells the story of the 1933 expedition and of the aviators involved: Lord Clydesdale, Lieutenant-Colonel Stewart Blacker, Flight Lieutenant D. F. McIntyre and Mr. S. R. Bonnett. This the second in the series on Great Flights.

(Pages 73-83)

You can read more on the Pegasus engine in Wonders of World Engineering.

A short documentary film, Wings Over Everest, was released in 1934.

THE EVEREST MAIL being handed over to the pilot of the Westland Wallace machine before the flight over Mount Everest

The Everest Mail

THE EVEREST MAIL being handed over to the pilot of the Westland Wallace machine before the flight over Mount Everest. Colonel P. T. Etherton, one of the organizers of the flight, is handing over the mail. Included in the mail were letters to King George V, the Prince of Wales (now the Duke of Windsor) and the late Lady Houston.

(Page 75)

PILOT’S COCKPIT in the Houston-Westland aeroplane used in the flights over Everest in 1933

Pilot’s Cockpit in the Houston-Westland Aeroplane

PILOT’S COCKPIT in the Houston-Westland aeroplane used in the flights over Everest in 1933. The valves and regulators for controlling the oxygen supply which enabled the pilot to breathe in the rarefied atmosphere are on the right. In the lower left-hand corner is the tail-incidence wheel, and above it the throttle and mixture control. The large dial in the centre of the panel is the revolution counter, and above it are the fore-and-aft and transverse levels. To the right are the oil temperature and pressure gauges. To the left are the altimeter and (farther left) the air speed indicator.

(Page 83)

INFRA-RED PHOTOGRAPH of the peak of Makalu taken from more than a hundred miles away APPROACHING EVEREST on April 19, 1933 APPROACHING EVEREST on April 19, 1933 Aerial Equipment on the Hengist Receiver for Direction-Finding Radio The Sizes of Civil and Military Aircraft Col. Charles A. Lindbergh

Receiver for Direction-Finding Radio

RECEIVER FOR DIRECTION-FINDING RADIO which works on a loop aerial and provides facilities for homing radio. With this receiver, which is a Marconi Type 5062, both aural and visual indications for homing radio can be provided.

(Page 87)

The Caterpillar Club (Part 1)

Every member’s life has been saved by a parachute. The Caterpillar Club is a fraternity of about 1,700 men and a few women, of many nationalities, whose lives have been saved by the Irvin Air Chute. It is not a club in the normal sense of the word, as the members do not meet for social occasions. There are no fees, no rules and no headquarters. The only tangible sign of the club’s existence is a gold pin bearing a caterpillar design. This chapter is by Sidney Howard and the article is concluded in part 4.

(Page 91-92)