Cover image for The complete idiot's guide to flying and gliding
The complete idiot's guide to flying and gliding
Lane, Bill, 1961-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Indianapolis, Ind. : Alpha Books, [2000]

Physical Description:
xiii, 338 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TL553 .L36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
TL553 .L36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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In this guide, the authors trace the progress of aviation from the classic age to the fastest and largest of modern airliners presently operating. Opening the cockpit door they offer an insight into how pilots do their job.

Author Notes

Bill Lane, a writer and graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, has logged more than 5,000 hours of flight time as a flight instructor and owver of a vintage 1950's Cessna. Lane lives in Sterling, Massachusetts.

Azriela Jaffe is the author of eight books, including The Complete Idiot's Guide® to Beating Debt.

Table of Contents

Part 1 Taking to the Sky: The History of Flightp. 1
1 The Earliest Aviatorsp. 3
"If Man Were Meant to Fly ..."p. 4
Did Icarus Beat Orville and Wilbur?p. 5
Not So Mythicalp. 6
For the Birdsp. 6
Leonardo da Vinci, Aviation Pioneerp. 7
Leonardo and His Flying Machinesp. 9
The First Flight?p. 9
Aeronauts and the Balloon Revolutionp. 11
A Lot of Hot Airp. 11
The Very First Aviatorsp. 11
The Race Is On!p. 13
Gliding Pioneersp. 15
Sir George Cayleyp. 15
Otto Lilienthalp. 17
2 The Bishop's Boys: Wilbur and Orville Wrightp. 19
The Bishop's Boysp. 19
The Race to Flyp. 20
Getting Off the Groundp. 21
Lilienthal, Chanute, and Langleyp. 23
"Turning" Pointp. 25
Ready for Takeoffp. 25
Proof Positivep. 28
Who Was Really First?p. 28
Gustave Whiteheadp. 29
The Flight That Wasn't?p. 32
3 Barnstormers and Other Risk Takersp. 35
Harriet Quimbyp. 35
Lincoln Beacheyp. 36
The Wrights' Deadly Circusp. 37
Ralph Johnstonep. 38
The Vin Fiz Falls Flatp. 39
Defying Deathp. 40
Beginning of the Endp. 42
Flying by the Pound: Air Mailp. 42
Air Mail Pilotsp. 42
The Birth of the Airlinesp. 43
4 Great Flyers of the World Warsp. 45
The First Military Planesp. 45
World War I: Aviation's Fiery Trialp. 46
Rickenbacker: From Chauffeur to Fighter Acep. 46
Rickenbacker Throws His "Hat in the Ring"p. 48
The Fastest Gun in the Skyp. 48
"Captain Eddie" Becomes Captain of Industryp. 50
The Dreaded Red Baronp. 51
From White-Knuckle Flyer to Red Baronp. 51
The End of the Red Baronp. 52
World War II: The Planes That Won the Warp. 53
The "Flying Fortress": The B-17 Bomberp. 53
The B-29 "Superfortress" Bomberp. 55
Wild Mustangs: The P-51 Fighter Plane and Chuck Yeagerp. 58
The X-1p. 59
The P-51 Lives Onp. 60
5 Lindbergh, Earhart, and the Rise of the Airlinesp. 63
Charles Lindbergh, the Reluctant Herop. 64
Lucky Lindyp. 64
Lindbergh the Daredevilp. 65
The "Flying Fool"p. 66
Flying Into Historyp. 68
Amelia Earhart Flies Into Immortalityp. 69
"Lady Lindy"p. 70
Taking the Long Wayp. 71
First Sign of Troublep. 72
Theories and Conspiraciesp. 73
The Airlines Reap the Benefitsp. 75
6 Cessna, Piper, and the Emergence of Sport Flyingp. 79
Sport Flying: Safer Than Everp. 80
The Planes That Clyde Builtp. 81
The Self-Taught Pilotp. 81
The Beloved Cessnap. 83
Bill Piper Puts Pilots on Topp. 85
From Oil Man to Air Manp. 86
You Take the High Wing, and I'll Take the Low Wingp. 86
When "Hogs" Flyp. 87
Oshkosh: The Sport Pilot's Rite of Passagep. 89
Part 2 The Thrill of Flightp. 91
7 How Airplanes Fly, Part 1: The Parts of a Planep. 93
Putting Names to the Piecesp. 94
The Powerplantp. 94
The Enginep. 94
The Propellerp. 96
The Cowlingp. 96
The Plane Has a Bodyp. 97
Putting Wings on Itp. 98
The Aileronsp. 99
The Flapsp. 99
The Empen-What?p. 99
The Horizontal Stabilizerp. 99
The Vertical Stabilizerp. 100
The Rudderp. 101
We're Rolling Nowp. 101
Tricycle Gearp. 101
Conventional Gearp. 102
Retractable Gearp. 102
8 How Airplanes Fly, Part 2: The Aerodynamics of Flightp. 105
Pivot Points: Pitch, Roll, and Yawp. 105
The Four Forcesp. 106
Lift: The Gift of Newton and Bernoullip. 107
For Every Actionp. 107
Pressurep. 108
Lift Has Its Limitsp. 108
The Angle of Attackp. 109
Carry That Weightp. 110
What a Dragp. 110
Parasite Dragp. 111
Induced Dragp. 111
Thrust: The Driving Forcep. 112
Jet-Powered Thrustp. 113
Making All the Movesp. 113
In Controlp. 114
Turn, Turn, Turnp. 115
9 Soaring on Silent Wings: Glidingp. 119
The Glider and the Planep. 119
Thin Is Inp. 121
Nice Pair of Wingtipsp. 121
Wheels Can Be a Dragp. 123
Taking Offp. 123
The Glider's "Engine"p. 125
Thermal Powerp. 125
Flying the Rangep. 126
Landing the Gliderp. 127
Gliding Conditionsp. 128
In the Cockpitp. 128
How Much Will It Cost?p. 130
For Nonpilots: Getting Startedp. 130
For Power Pilots: Making the Transitionp. 131
10 How Do Helicopters Fly?p. 133
Igor Sikorsky's Wild Ridep. 134
Taming the Wild Rotorp. 136
The Dynamics of Helicopter Flightp. 138
Spinning Into Flightp. 138
Putting a Whole New Twist on Itp. 139
Going Placesp. 141
The Swash Plate Assemblyp. 142
Going Forwardp. 143
When the Fan Stops Turningp. 144
Amazing Futurep. 145
How Much Will It Cost?p. 146
11 Up, Up, and Away: Hot-Air Balloonsp. 149
Ballooning: It's a Gas!p. 150
The Air That You Heatp. 150
The Envelope, Pleasep. 151
A Lesson from Archimedesp. 151
Liftoff!p. 152
Blowin' in the Windp. 153
The Planp. 154
As Different as Anabatic and Katabaticp. 155
The Thrill of the Chasep. 158
Champagne and Propanep. 160
Imagination and Technologyp. 162
What Will It Cost?p. 163
12 Hybrids, Oddities, and Curiositiesp. 165
Giant Gasbags: Blimps and Airshipsp. 165
Anatomy of a Blimpp. 166
The Takeoff and the Landingp. 167
The Goodyear Mystiquep. 168
An Odd Hybridp. 169
The Free-Spinning Rotorp. 169
The Next-Generation Gyroplanep. 171
Harrier Jump Jet: Airplane or Helicopter?p. 171
Floating Around the Worldp. 173
How the Hybrid Worksp. 173
Part 3 In the Cockpitp. 177
13 Getting Off the Ground: Becoming an Airplane Pilotp. 179
What Does It Cost to Become a Sport Pilot?p. 179
The Medical Certificatep. 180
Tools of the Tradep. 181
Winning Your Wings: Instructionp. 184
Additional Training Optionsp. 186
Study Aids and Video Programsp. 187
FAA Written Exam and FAA Flight Testp. 188
Buying Into Sport Flyingp. 190
14 Navigation: Getting from Here to There Without Street Signsp. 193
Drawing a Mapp. 193
The Chartp. 194
On the Grid: Latitude and Longitudep. 195
What's So Great About Great Circles?p. 196
When North Is Not Truly Northp. 197
Dead Reckoning: Safer Than It Soundsp. 198
Airspeed and Groundspeedp. 200
Steering the Coursep. 200
The Radio: All Navigation, All the Timep. 201
So You Think You're Lost: Getting Back on Coursep. 203
15 From Takeoff to Landingp. 205
Preflight: Keeping It Safep. 205
The Once-Overp. 207
Inspecting the Powerplantp. 208
Getting a Move Onp. 210
Taxi!p. 210
Liftoff!p. 210
On the Radio: Working with Air Traffic Controlp. 213
Collision Avoidance: Keeping Your Head on a Swivelp. 215
Coming Back to Earthp. 217
It's Easier Than It Seems--and Harderp. 218
16 Cloud Dancing: Air Shows and Aerobaticsp. 221
No Business Like (Air)Show Businessp. 221
What Are Aerobatics?p. 224
Turning Flying on Its Headp. 225
Putting a Spin on Itp. 226
Turning the Circle on Edgep. 227
On a Rollp. 227
Hammering the Point Homep. 228
An Intense "Headache"p. 229
Of Aerobatics and "Comfort Bags"p. 229
"G" Whiz!p. 230
That Green Feelingp. 232
What Does It Cost to Learn Aerobatics?p. 233
Part 4 Meeting the Challenges to the Perfect Flightp. 235
17 Talking About the Weatherp. 237
What Makes the Weather?p. 238
The Coriolis Effectp. 239
Reading the Cloudsp. 240
A Cloud Is Bornp. 240
To Name a Cloudp. 240
Turbulence: Rocking and Rollingp. 242
Severe Weather: Thunderstorms and Tornadoesp. 243
Thunderstormsp. 243
Tornadoesp. 245
Weather Chartsp. 246
The Visible Atmospherep. 247
Miragesp. 247
Halos, Sun Dogs, and Sun Pillarsp. 248
Rainbowsp. 248
Coronas and Gloriesp. 248
The Green Flashp. 249
18 Overcoming the Body's Limitationsp. 251
How the Atmosphere Stacks Upp. 252
A Lot of Pressurep. 252
A Little Pressurep. 253
When Air's Not Therep. 254
It's Not Easy Being Greenp. 256
Fear of Flyingp. 258
19 Emergencies in the Airp. 261
The Rare Emergencyp. 261
Learning from the Pastp. 262
When the Engine Stopsp. 264
Icy Wingsp. 265
Microburstsp. 267
"Captain, the Passengers Are Revolting"p. 268
Payne Stewart's Last Flight: Explosive Decompressionp. 270
20 John F. Kennedy Jr.'s Final Flightp. 273
Still Another Kennedy Tragedyp. 274
The Last Few Hoursp. 274
The Last Few Milesp. 276
The Graveyard Spiralp. 279
All Signs Urged Cautionp. 279
Inexperiencep. 280
Pressurep. 281
Challenging Weather Conditionsp. 281
Personal and Professional Stressp. 281
Physical Discomfortp. 281
Routep. 282
No Contact with Air-Traffic Controllersp. 282
Dangerous Thinkingp. 283
The Folly of Night VFRp. 284
The Deceptive Sense of Balancep. 285
The Inner Earp. 285
Disorientationp. 285
21 The Future of Aviationp. 289
Human Wingsp. 290
Paul MacCreadyp. 290
Daedalus and Icarus Reduxp. 291
Burt Rutanp. 292
Skunking the Competitionp. 293
Around the World on One Tank of Gasp. 293
Jetting Into the Futurep. 295
A Seat in the Cockpitp. 297
Returning to Flying's Rootsp. 298
A Glossaryp. 301
B Glossary of Radio Communicationsp. 307
C Recommended Readingp. 313
D World Wide Web Resourcesp. 321
Indexp. 329