Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

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Boac
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#21 Post by Boac » Tue Sep 08, 2020 4:59 pm

I didn't want to spoil the gourmet burger.................

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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#22 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:24 am

Undried Plum wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:01 am
I remember Peter Gibbs at Edinburgh Flying Club. I must admit that I didn't take to him. He always seemed to me to be a bit too full of himself.
Any bloke who told off Herbert Von Karajan, can't have been all bad...
Von Karajan and Peter Gibbs

During the tour von Karajan had behaved quite unprofessionally at most of the smaller, less important concerts. He seemed to think it beneath his dignity to take more than one bow at the end and the orchestra was left sitting, embarrassed, while the applause grew and grew until Manoug Parikian, the leader, eventually led us off the stage. By the end of the tour Peter felt it was time von Karajan was asked for an apology, and being Peter felt it was his duty to ask. The last concert being Boston, and therefore important, we had a proper rehearsal in the morning. As van Karajan started to conduct Peter stood up from the back desk of the 2nd violins and demanded an apology: “Mr von Karajan, I think it is time you were told how rude your behaviour has been on this tour. I think you owe the orchestra an apology…..” No response from Von Karajan . A few players at the front start to play. A few more at the back start shuffling feet and generally making agreement noises. Von Karajan continues conducting without the slightest sign of noticing that anything was amiss. Suddenly a voice from the back of the hall; “Mr Carter will you please come here immediately” The voice was Walter Legges. Someone had told him that Peter at the back of the 2nd violins was causing a disruption and I was the unlucky name he hit upon.

To my great relief he soon realised that it was the other Peter responsible and I was sent back, still trembling, to my seat.


Von Karajan

Von Karajan demanded that Peter be sacked immediately. The orchestra demanded that von Karajan be sacked immediately. An important concert that evening, so a British compromise – leave it all until we get back home and sort it out in the calm light of day.

Unfortunately von Karajan is not British! After the interval he refuses to come back on to the stage until a letter is signed stating that Peter will never again play with the Philharmonia, so the management who have no choice – the audience is sitting patiently waiting for – was it the Bartok Concerto for Orchestra , I don’t remember-sign.

As far as I know von Karajan never conducted the Philharmonia again and Peter didn’t play with them either.

Instead he formed a string quartet – the Peter Gibbs String Quartet. Being made up of very talented young musicians it was immediately successful but Peter being Peter demanded such high standards of his colleagues that it inevitably went the way of so many young quartets and disbanded. It wasn’t good enough for them to start a movement exactly together (always a point of much rehearsal in the early days of a group) Peter insisted that each member should sit in different corners of the room with their backs to each other and start by some sort of intuition! This and many other idealistic but crazy ideas proved too much for the others who all left and went their separate ways in the world of chamber music.
https://concertpitchblog.wordpress.com/ ... ter-gibbs/

Some accounts of this spat have Gibbs saying something like "I did not spend four years of my life fighting bastards like you to be insulted before our own Allies as you did last evening."

Was Von Karajan a Nazi?
World War II

Karajan's career continued to thrive at the beginning of the war. In 1939 the Berlin State Opera appointed Karajan as State Kapellmeister and conductor of symphony concerts by the Prussian State Orchestra.[15] He then became music director of the Staatskapelle Berlin, with which he toured in Rome with extraordinary success. However, in the following year his contract in Aachen was discontinued. His marriage to the partly Jewish Anita Gütermann and the prosecution of his agent Rudolf Vedder also contributed to the temporary professional decline, leaving him few engagements beyond a limited season of concerts with the Staatskapelle.

By 1944, Karajan was, according to his own account,[citation needed] losing favour with the Nazi leadership, but he still conducted concerts in wartime Berlin on 18 February 1945. A short time later, in the closing stages of the war, he and his wife Anita fled Germany for Milan, relocating with the assistance of Victor de Sabata.

Karajan's increased prominence from 1933 to 1945 has led to speculation that he joined the Nazi Party solely to advance his music career. Critics such as Jim Svejdahave pointed out that other prominent conductors, such as Arturo Toscanini, Otto Klemperer, Erich Kleiber, and Fritz Busch, fled Germany or Italy at the time. Richard Osborne noted that among the many significant conductors who continued to work in Germany throughout the war years—Wilhelm Furtwängler, Carl Schuricht, Karl Böhm, Hans Knappertsbusch, Clemens Krauss and Karl Elmendorff—Karajan was one of the youngest and thus one of the least advanced in his career. Karajan was allowed to conduct various orchestras and was free to travel, even to the Netherlands to conduct the Concertgebouw Orchestra and make recordings there in 1943.

Karajan's denazification tribunal, held in Vienna on 15 March 1946, cleared him of illegal activity during the Nazi period. Karajan was discharged by the Austrian denazification examining board on 18 March 1946, and resumed his conducting career shortly thereafter.Therefore, years later former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt could say about Karajan's Nazi party membership card: "Karajan was obviously not a Nazi. He was a Mitläufer"
- Wikipedia

Von Karajan was a yachtsman, pilot and keen sports car driver... a very talented rogue probably...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herbert_von_Karajan
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#23 Post by Undried Plum » Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:58 am

TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:24 am
Any bloke who told off Herbert Von Karajan, can't have been all bad...
The Herbert I remember Gibbs to have been is entirely consistent with the clash with that von Caravan bloke whom you mention.

Both were arseholes, in my opinion. Two spirals, inevitably to collide into a singularity which is forever doomed to be come a tiny spec of negrety, forever more.

Fortunately for all of us, the fellow member of EFC, Ian Hamilton, from whom he had rented the wee Cessna, is still around.

I shall greatly miss his delightful company and wit and repartee when the Reaper finally calls upon Ian. He's great fun, most especially as I don't agree with him politically. He argues so delightfully well and is perhaps the last of the truly great educators of his generation. This afternoon I shall raise a glass in salute, not to the tenant of that pissy wee Cessna for that Christmas, but to the rentier thereof.

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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#24 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Sun Sep 13, 2020 7:24 am

Undried Plum wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:58 am
TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:24 am
Any bloke who told off Herbert Von Karajan, can't have been all bad...
von Caravan


Pronounced with a strong Swansea accent. "Curravaan"... Think Ruth Madoc in "Hi-De-Hi"... =))
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#25 Post by ian16th » Sun Sep 13, 2020 1:12 pm

TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 7:24 am
Undried Plum wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:58 am
TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:24 am
Any bloke who told off Herbert Von Karajan, can't have been all bad...
von Caravan


Pronounced with a strong Swansea accent. "Curravaan"... Think Ruth Madoc in "Hi-De-Hi"... =))
I always remember her in Poems and Pints.


Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be much on Youtube.
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#26 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:02 pm

A very eccentric Stealth Bomber design..
There are many problems with flying a bomber aircraft. You’re basically flying a cargo plane, albeit one that only takes its goods halfway. The larger the cargo you can carry, the larger the ‘impression’ on your enemy. This favours large, slow aircraft. Aircraft that make easy targets.

It’s hardly surprising that since the First World War, engineers and designers have been trying to find a way to conceal their huge creations in that most revealing of backdrops – the sky. Camouflage has always been the first option, but it presents a number of difficulties. A plane painted in traditional brown and green camouflage can be almost invisible from above, but sticks out like a sore thumb against a blue sky. By the Second World War many planes had two kinds of camouflage: blue underneath and green and brown above. Not that it helped on a cloudy day. For this reason some reconnaissance Spitfires were painted a fetching pink. It was invisible in the morning sky, but not hard to spot on the ground.

So, what if a plane could be made invisible? That was the obsession of engineers of the German Linke-Hofmann company in 1916. It was a bold dream, particularly for a company that had until recently only manufactured railway rolling stock.

Linke-Hofmann had a very particular problem. The German government had awarded it a contract to build one of its ‘R-planes’ – the ‘R’ standing for Riesenflugzeug or ‘giant aircraft’. These were to be the largest planes of the war, with multiple engines capable of being serviceable in flight and carrying heavy payloads for several hours. As such they needed to be big.

And the ‘RI’ was big. Linke-Hofmann designed the fuselage to completely fill the gap between the biplane wings. This fuselage held not only the flight crew, but four 260hp Mercedes engines, which were connected to gearboxes and driveshafts that then transferred power to two tractor propellers mounted between the wings, giving the aircraft a maximum speed of 140km/h. Inside the fuselage, the engines could thus be accessed during flight. It did, however, also mean the engines were always in danger of overheating, while vibration made piloting the plane more akin to using a pneumatic drill. More worrying still, the deck configuration meant that a plane on its way home – with less fuel and no bombs – would be very top-heavy.


Then there was the size. The plane was over 15.5m long with a wingspan of over 33m. The forward section was so large it had three decks. The top deck housed the pilots and wireless station, the middle was the engine compartment, and the lower held the bombardiers, fuel tanks and payload. It was never going to be easy to make this monstrous aircraft disappear, but the makers believed they had a secret weapon. Instead of covering the fuselage behind the cockpit with doped canvas, they intended to use a high-tech material called Cellon, which was transparent and hence would, they thought, make the plane (at least in parts) invisible.

There were three main problems with this stealth technology. First, Cellon, a type of cellulose acetate, was highly flammable, which, combined with the wooden fuselage, made the plane a tinderbox. Secondly, it wasn’t very strong or stable; in dry weather the material shrank, warping the wooden fuselage, while in damp weather it expanded and made the whole structure sag. This had a very unnerving effect in flight, as the control surfaces changed characteristics from moment to moment depending on humidity. Cellon also decayed in ultraviolet light, becoming yellowed, brittle and prone to explosive shattering.

Yet it was the third drawback that really sealed the machine’s fate. Cellon was transparent but very shiny, meaning that in flight the plane almost glowed as sunlight bounced off its sides.

The RI only ever made two flights that we know of, in the spring of 1917. On the first the wheels fell off and, when the machine finally got airborne, the pilot, sitting in his sweltering Cellon cockpit, found the controls so soft that he couldn’t steer. In his elevated position he also couldn’t calculate how far the ground was below him. When he landed, the plane nosed over and was badly damaged.

On the second flight the wings fell off and the plane hit the ground vertically. Amazingly, all but one of the crew survived.

Despite this setback, two more of the aircraft were built, though there is no record of anyone trying to fly them. After that the project was shelved and the world’s first stealth bomber quietly disappeared.

https://eandt.theiet.org/content/articl ... le-bomber/
Linke-Hofmann_R1.png
Linke-Hofmann_R1.png (319.6 KiB) Viewed 57 times
Pilots who fly in glass bombers should never thow stones...
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#27 Post by ian16th » Sun Sep 13, 2020 8:58 pm

TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:02 pm
There are many problems with flying a bomber aircraft. You’re basically flying a cargo plane, albeit one that only takes its goods halfway.

When some American visitors to the Lancaster production line were overheard criticizing the Lancaster a 'bomb truck', Mr Chadwick smiled.
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Re: Aviation's eccentrics and rogues...

#28 Post by Undried Plum » Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:19 pm

ian16th wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 8:58 pm
When some American visitors to the Lancaster production line were overheard criticizing the Lancaster a 'bomb truck', Mr Chadwick smiled.
Oh!, So very British!

The Septics wouldn't even have heard the whizz over their own bonces.

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