The Tiger's Eye: Top 5 favorite aircrraft

12 November 2007

Top 5 favorite aircrraft

Over at, Prestersean picks up a meme that is running through a few blogs. Name your top 5 favorite aircraft of all time.
I decided to take up the challenge as many know I am simply nuts over aircraft. I think that I will break mine up into two groups.
Older than 1960 and 1960 on.
No. 5

The Hughes H1 air racer

I never really knew much about this one till I visited the National Air and Space Museum and immediately fell in love. This plane just screams speed while sitting still. It was truly ahead of its time.
No 4.

The F4U Corsair

I had a small Bachmann Miniplane model of this aircraft when I was a kid. I used to read about the exploits of the Black Sheep Squadron and dream of being wingman to Pappy Boyington in a blue F4U flying off of some small Pacific Island.
No. 3

The De Havilland Mosquito

One of the great war movies of my childhood was "633 Squadron" which was about a Mosquito squadron's attacks on a Nazi Nuclear factory in Norway. It featured a number of flying examples. This was my introduction to the Mossie as she was fondly referred to by her pilots.

No. 2

The Heinkel He-219 Uhu

A Dedicated Nightfighter, the Uhu was a dreadful scourge on the Lancaster and Halifax fleets over Germany in WWII. It was produced in very limited numbers due to a political falling out that Herr Heinkel had with the Nazi hierarchy. Too bad for them. Had this marvellous plane been produced in larger numbers the night bombing raids would have been far bloodier for the British.

No. 1

The Locheed P-38 Lightning.

this beautiful plane has always held a sweet spot in my mind. It just looks so fast and cool. It is as if a fantastic comic-book dream suddenly sprang to life. When I visited the Air force Museum in Dayton, Oh. I was able to see one of these up close. You are immediately struck by how small it is in comparison to other twin engine aircraft. It really isn't all that much larger than a P-51. I cant imagine what it must have felt like to solo in one of these. There were no 2 seat trainer versions so you basically passed your advanced training then once you familiarized yourself with the cockpit layout and discussed the basic handling with an instructor, you were then on your own. Many novice pilots were lost learning to fly this beast but those who passed became the USAAF's highest scoring pilots. The Germans had a particular nickname for the P-38; ""der Gabelschwanz-Teufel" – the Fork-Tailed Devil" because of it's dangerous character. Many Luftwaffe pilots learned that it wasn't your typical easy kill that most twin engined aircraft were. It was surprisingly manueuvrable and exceedingly fast.

That's it for the Pre 1960 group.
1960 to the present will come in the next few days.
Did'ya see what turned up in Wales?
Ya just can't keep a good girl down!