World War 2


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World War 2

Photo of Terry Prendergast boarding a Hawker Hurricane
Terry Prendergast boarding a Hawker Hurricane

This related topics menu links to connections between modern hang gliding and World War Two. Some early hang glider pilots were veterans of that war and some whose design skills influenced hang glider design were involved in aircraft design during that period (1939 to 1945).

The links here are in approximate chronological order.


Sticks and rudders in Hang gliding before 1973 for Irv Culver, who designed the thick airfoil section of Volmer Jensen’s VJ-23 rigid hang glider, and who is credited with solving the Lockheed P-38’s dive recovery problem

ATA girl Ann Welch: BHGA president, formerly a ‘Spitfire girl’ of the British Air Transport Auxiliary

Hang gliding 1973 part 1 for former WW2 ‘glider rider’ William Le Mer who won the first hang gliding competition he entered, and some words by SCHGA flight director Kaz De Lisse, who had landed with the Fourth Marine Division on Iwo Jima

Dune in Hang gliding 1975 part 1 for mention of the vintage DUKW that ferried hang gliders and their pilots to the top of the Guadalupe Dune on the California coast

Amerikabomber in Mitchell Wing for one of the design ancestors of the Mitchell Wing B-10 Buzzard rigid hang glider, which gained distance world records in the late 1970s

Righteous stuff in Hang gliding early 1980s part 2 for World War 2 fighter ace Chuck Yeager, who was first to fly faster than sound and survive, at the hang gliding event at Telluride, Colorado

Arizona in Hang gliding mid 1980s for Hans Heydrich, whose father flew Messerschmitt 109s in World War 2

Other related

RAF Ringstead in Overview of Ringstead (a hang gliding site on the coast of Dorset, England) for the WW2 radar installation that became part of the U.S. Air Force communications net during the cold war

Terry Prendergast, the fighter pilot who became BHGA hang gliding safety officer for some years

Ultralight Products of California and Utah (related topics menu) which includes a photo of the Douglas SBD Dauntless production line

Wendling air base in Lejair: Tony and Rona Webb including two photos

Vehicle-based testing in Tom Price’s flying machines for a connection with NASA engineer Hewitt Phillips, who assessed the stability, control, and flying qualities of a large number of U.S. military aircraft, including the F4U Corsair and the P-40 Warhawk fighters. He also conducted flying-quality evaluations of the British Hawker Hurricane and Supermarine Spitfire fighters.

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