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    Issaquah, WA
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  1. Well, this isn't really a scary story, but it's from the old days. We jumped at Issaquah WA in the late 60's I think. One of the guys had some older relative that gave him a WWI (I think) flare parachute, and he wanted to find something fun to do with it. He secured a rock to it somehow, possibly in a little bucket, for weight. Some of us were going up for a jump and he wanted us to throw it out and he would be on the ground to go get it. So, during climb out, at about 500 feet we opened the door and pitched this thing out, aiming to have it land in a dusty open field on the other side of Hwy 10. Somehow the chute gobbed up and went whistling down and thumped in prettly dramatically. There were cars stopping and people getting out and running out to where it came down. My buddy was there and was picking it up when several whuffos came running up and yelling "is he ok?" He made motions like dusting himself off and just said "yeah, I'll be ok" Everybodies jaw hit the floor, and when they recovered they all walked slowly back to their cars shaking their heads in amazement. I don't remember any news stories in the paper, but I bet that somebody reported it.
  2. Hi Jerry, I hadn't realized that the plane in Arlington was N4444Q (I think) that we had at Issaquah. Interesting. Yes, we have established that we were at some of the same meets back then, so I'm sure we have met at some point. Thanks, Bob
  3. Hi 377, I know this is old and I just stumbled across it. Since I'm an old, old, old jumper from Washington state I remember the Lodestars. I never jumped the one from Arlington, but we had another at Issaquah and I made quite a few jumps from it. As far as the pilot in Arlington being able to get control back, he may have had his hands full. Back in those days we sat on the floor with no seat belts and I have heard speculation that, when the stall occurred, there may have been jumpers that were flung up into the cockpit and interfered with getting it back under control. Pretty scary thought, but it has the ring of truth to it. This was very sad and I lost a number of friends in this accident.
  4. I jumped at Dillingham Field in the late 60's. I was in the Air Force then stationed at Hickam AFB. I remember a guy called Sonny Orr back then. I can't help with where he might be now but, wasn't he the guy that was getting married and all his buddies held him down and shaved his chest so his bride wouldn't get close to him because of the stubble? Nasty trick. We used to headquarter at the Fire Station on the field back then. We used to go jump into pineapple fields.
  5. Bessie, Yes, having the cutaway cable loop sticking out from under the Capewell cover was so eye catching and obvious that it must have been done on purpose. Makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck to think that somebody might actually jump it like that. Bob
  6. Hi 377, After discovering this site I'm still going through the history in these pages. Sometimes I can't resist making comments as I go. Did you know that to fly a Connie the pilot had to be younger than 45 years old. This is because nobody older than that would be able to handle three pieces of tail at once.
  7. Hi 377, Yes I have. There was a lot of those at Hickam AFB, Hawaii when I was stationed there. Talking to one of the 133 pilot when asked what it was like to fly he said "it's like sitting on your front porch flying your house!". BTW, Congrats on your story and article about the 133. A great read. I filled out a lot of those maintenance logs you showed and that brought back memories. Thanks!
  8. I had a piggyback rig back then and I liked it a lot, but there is still some good things to be said about the old belly warts when your pack won't open. It seems like I should recognize your name but I don't. Sounds like we probably ran into each other a lot at NW functions back then. Nice to hear from you.
  9. Sorry about reviving this conversation after so many years, but I'm old and live in the past. I'm pretty sure I was at this boogie in Deer Park. That guy second from right in the back row sure looks like Ralph. If it's the load I'm thinking of Ralph had a bad experience at opening. Had a spinning mal and cut away, but it was a long time before his reserve showed. It took so long that everybody was on pins and needles. You could clearly see from his body position that he was fighting some kind of problem over his shoulder. So eventually his reserve showed and it opened fine. On the ground he said that he pulled the reserve and the container wouldn't open. He had to reach over his shoulder and grab the pack material and physically rip it open to get it to take off. I think that it had been a long time since the canopy had been opened and aired. Need to take better care of your gear Ralph.
  10. Yes, the B-36 used six 4360s, so 28 cylinders per engine times 2 plugs per cylinder times 6 engines equals 336 plugs. I don't know what they had on the B-36, but the 124 had an engine analyzer capable of looking at the spark waveform of all 224 plugs. Amazing old plane!
  11. I just stumbled on to this thread. I know it's old but I couldn't resist commenting. I used to be a crew chief on C-124s and I can speak to how much went into starting and running those big old 28 cylinder 4360 cu inch engines. First you pushed the starter button and allowed the engine to turn over for a certain number of blade counts (this was to verify that one of the lower cylinders hadn't gotten enough liquid in them to cause a liquid lock). Then you turned on the ignition and continued to hold the starter while depressing the ignition boost and prime. When the engine begins to fire you release the starter button, but continue to hold the prime and ignition boost until the engine is idling smoothly. At this point you slide in the mixture lever and watch for an rpm drop. When the rpm dips then you release the prime and the engine will be going. You had to be pretty careful with the timing of the mixture lever and the release of the prime button. If you got it wrong it would result in a backfire that many times blew the exhaust stacks right off the engine, stripping the mounting studs out of the cylinder. Thanks for raising these old memories!
  12. How about "Rocky" Kenoyer. He was named after the mountain goat mascot for Great Northern Railroad. This was due to his early RW tendencies to blow up budding formations. He got his act together though and was a member of the world champion 8 man team Cleareye Express.
  13. Hi Jerry, Thanks for that explanation. I was jumping back then myself, and what I remember thinking about this was that we required students to do five static line jumps with the last couple having a dummy ripcord pull. This was because there was concern whether a confused student on one of their first few jumps would panic and not remember to pull a ripcord. This concern extended to emergency procedures and we didn't teach cutaways out of concern that a noob might not pull the reserve. Whatever he had up there was going to be better than nothing.
  14. Wow, can't top that one! However I had a few that I feel lucky to survive. The one I'm going to tell about happened over Issaquah, WA in the late '60s. I think it was an RW load with two Cessna's from 12500. I remember that the formation was starting to build and I was working my way into a slot when WHAMMO! I saw stars and I think the lights went out for a few seconds. I came to pretty quickly but was a little disoriented, so I just pulled the ripcord. I was open at about 6000 and just kind of reeling and trying to come to my senses. It was nice to have the extra altitude to sort out what I was going to do to land near the field. I did ok and managed to land in the DZ parking lot and just laid there for a few minutes. After getting together to rehash what had happened I learned that a good friend was flying camera and didn't realize that he was sliding sideways at a pretty high rate of speed and had slammed into me. He said he was sure glad to see me pull after that. I was jumping a piggyback and the 2500lb bellyband had been ripped off the rig. I had deep black and blue from my knee to my armpit. It is sobering to think that nobody used automatic openers back in those days.
  15. Twardo, I'm not sure who originated this reply, but when a student would ask about what happens if both chutes don't open I would tell them to cross your legs, twist your torso and put your arms above your head and cross them. The usual reply was "How would that help you?". I would then answer "Well, it won't help YOU, but it will help the ground crew screw you out of the ground." It was always fun watching the reaction.