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Old Jan 15, 2012, 04:51 PM
DJO
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New England Air Museum Open Cockpit Event Information + Photos

For Christmas, my Uncle Steven gave my brother and I a chance to visit the New England Air Museum near Bradley International Airport for the Open Cockpit Event that was going on there today. Meaning that you could actually sit right in the cockpit of some of the planes, which both my brother and I did on multiple planes (and my brother sat in a helicopter's cockpit, too, but I was busy taking pictures at the time). A big thanks to my Uncle Steven who funded the trip (and the food from the restaurants that we ate at).

So, today was the day of the Open Cockpit event at the Museum. It was quite the large and exciting museum, with planes, helicopters, and even a few motorcycles, cars, and R/C models all lined up next to and above each other in every which way! There was a small area set up with a few tables dedicated to R/C models for the Central Connecticut R/C Club. On the table were some planes, and a two large nitro R/C helicopters.

When I first walked into there, it was amazing how large the place was. There were multiple planes above me, one of which was a sailplane, and there were plane engines and ejection seats for airplanes right in front of me. I also sat in and checked out one of the cockpits, and the guy there offered to take my picture, so I accepted. From there, it was on to simply taking more pictures of the various planes, helicopters, motorcycles, and engines that were in front of me at the time. I eventually ended up taking over 200 pictures, but thanks to my 16 GB Lexar Memory card, I didn't run out of space like my brother, who was using his 1 GB one on his 14 Megapixel camera.

Then, we decided to check out the B-29 hangar that was also there at the museum. Man, was that B-29 Flying Fortress huge. I couldn't believe that they actually got that thing into the museum, it was so gigantic! To the left of the B-29 Flying Fortress were R/C simulators, planes, helicopters, and staff from the Central Connecticut R/C Club, which, I, of course, had to go and check out. The guy that I talked to was next to two large R/C helicopters - one nitro and one electric. Those 6S 22.2v 2650 mAH batteries were huge compared to the small 3S 11.1v 800 mAH batteries for my Tuff Trainer. So heavy... and obviously powerful to make a model helicopter that size fly! There was also a selection of electric and nitro R/C planes which I took a look at. From there we all headed outside, where multiple planes and a helicopter were being displayed. It was really cold out there, so we didn't stay for 10 minutes at each plane trying to get the clearest picture of it. There was even a plane that was launched from Bradley International Airport when we went out there that I zoomed in on with my camera and snapped a few photos of.

Lunch was at a Wendy's down the road, and then we headed back to the museum and went to the model department, where models of planes, boats, helicopters, and lots of other things were being created, painted, and displayed. I really liked those models, mainly because you could easily get pictures of them, unlike the life-sized models, which you rarely could get the full plane in the picture, something seemed to be always cut off. We then went back the museum part with the planes a little bit more, the gift shop, and then left to go home, stopping at a Friendly's down the road for ice cream for dessert.

One plane that I really liked was the Gee Bee, which I got a small orange and black model of in the gift shop. I'm also looking at the Gee Bee that's sold at Hobby King and seeing if that might be my next plane... Overall, my experience at the New England Air Museum and the Open Cockpit Event was great, and I'd definitely go back again.

I'd recommend anybody to go, it's a great place to browse around for a day on the weekends. With all the models there, you're sure to have a blast. I also heard that you can become a member and get discounts and other things.



Dan
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Last edited by DJO; Jan 15, 2012 at 05:51 PM.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 11:47 PM
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That "SMALL BIPLANE" is a very famous aircraft. The Laird "Solution" was the first winner of the Thompson trophy (1929) and the only biplane to ever win the prize! Its a very cool museum! The Gee Bee R1 (replica at the muesum) won that race in 1932.
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Old Jan 20, 2012, 06:23 AM
DJO
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Cool, you really know your aviation history!
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