The Jimmy Doolittle Center in Vacaville, California has acquired an original Lockheed Vega for its collection.

The aircraft was one of five built for Shell Oil Co. in 1933 and was designated “Shell Oil Number 7”. At the time, Doolittle was managing the company’s aviation department and flew No.7 on many occasions.

The “stunningly beautiful” machine was offered for sale following the death of its owner, hotelier John Desmond, and the Doolittle Center soon began negotiations. The resulting purchase agreement will see the Vega paid for over a three year period, with roughly half of the necessary funds being raised through donations.

A rollout event recently held to celebrate the Vega’s arrival at Vacaville was attended by aviation luminaries Bob Hoover and Clay Lacy as well as Doolittle’s granddaughter, Jonna Doolittle Hoppes, and other family members.

Click here to view an additional photo.


The Bugatti 100P Project, which previously built and flew a reproduction of Bugatti’s groundbreaking “Blue Dream” design, have proposed a single engine, two-seat, carbon-fiber version of the aircraft that is currently “in the early planning stages”.

The group is in the process of gauging interest for the project, although a timeframe and price point has not yet been established. A decision has also not been made about whether the machine could be made available as a kit if the idea comes to fruition.

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The EAA has announced that the 2016 AirVenture fly-in in Oshkosh will commemorate the 25th anniversary of Operation Desert Storm/Desert Shield with a special gathering of aircraft that served in the conflict.

The aircraft already confirmed for this year’s AirVenture gathering include fighter jets such as the F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon, A-10 Warthog, and F-18 Hornet. It also includes such support aircraft as the KC-135, EA-6B, and C-5M. Many of the aircraft used during those operations remain valuable assets for the U.S. military today. In addition, the Air Combat Command F-16 Viper Demonstration Team will fly as part of the afternoon air shows on Friday through Sunday, July 29-31.

In addition to the collection of aircraft, military commanders will be on hand to share their experiences serving in the operation. Gen. Chuck Horner, commander of the U.S. and Allied air operations in Desert Storm and Desert Shield, will be the guest of honor at an evening “Salute to Veterans” Day program on July 29th along with Gen. Gilmary Hostage, who flew combat missions during Desert Storm.

EAA’s vice president of communities and member programs, Rick Larsen, states “The planning, coordination and execution of what amounted to more than 100,000 sorties in a 43-day period during Desert Storm was a historical achievement in military aviation history. We are proud to welcome the soldiers, aviators, and aircraft of that operation to Oshkosh for a remembrance a quarter-century later.”

AirVenture 2016 will run from July 25-31 at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

(via EAA)


The Museum of Flight in Seattle is preparing to open their new Aviation Pavilion, a three acre display area housing an “unrivaled” assemblage of large aircraft.

The opening will mark the first time this part of the museum’s collection can be seen in one place, and will include a number of significant military and commercial machines.

The airliner exhibit includes the world’s only presentation of the first Boeing 727, 737 and 747 jets, the first jet Air Force One, the extremely rare Boeing 247D and Douglas DC-2 airliners from the 1930s, the only Concorde on the West Coast, and the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The military line-up includes three big bombers—World War Two’s B-17F Flying Fortress and B-29 Superfortress, and the Cold War’s B-47 Stratojet; plus jet fighters spanning the wars from Korea to the Persian Gulf.

Visitors will also experience a “highly interactive, behind-the-scenes exploration” of the air freight business, featuring a FedEx Air Cargo display built from the fuselage of a former FedEx Boeing 727 freighter. Tours, a café, and a children’s play will also be available.

The opening is scheduled for June 25th and 26th and will include a “Paint the Ave to the Pav,” community sidewalk painting project from 9 am to 4 pm on Saturday, as well as aviation-themed giveaways. All events are reportedly free with admission to the museum.

(via Museum of Flight)


In their new book EAA Oshkosh: The Best AirVenture Photography, James P. Busha, Hal Bryan and Dick Knapinksi compile the fascinating stories, history and aircraft that make up the annual EAA AirVenture fly-in in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

The book is organized according to aircraft types and includes coverage of warbirds, vintage aircraft, homebuilts, seaplanes and ultralights. EAA firsts (i.e., the F-35, all of Burt Rutan, the SR-71, etc.) are also featured along with a glimpse of the lively crowds and campgrounds seen at the world’s largest fly-in.

The 224 page book draws on the EAA’s photo archive dating back to 1953 and is described as “the next best thing to actually attending the show”.

Product Page: ($17.96)


The Experimental Aircraft Association has announced that this summer’s AirVenture Fly-in will include a special celebration of Boeing’s 100th anniversary.

The event’s main showcase ramp has been renamed “Boeing Centennial Plaza”, and July 30th has been dubbed “Boeing Day”. Attractions will include a unique collection of commercial and military aircraft representing the company’s first 100 years and a presentation highlighting the history of Boeing aircraft production.

Among the aircraft slated to participate in the fly-in are a Cathay Pacific 747-8 Freighter, a FedEx 767 and an Alaska Airlines 737-800 (operated by an all female crew for WomenVenture Day on July 27th). A number of historic aircraft are also scheduled to appear, including a B-17 Flying Fortress, B-29 Superfortress and several Stearman biplanes, which are described as “a major part of the Boeing legacy”.

AirVenture 2016 will run from July 25-31 at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. For a complete schedule of events, click here.

(via EAA Image via Wikimedia Commons)


A Convair B-58 Hustler, the first USAF bomber capable of supersonic speeds, will be heading to California’s Castle Air Museum after the move was approved by the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.

The aircraft is one of only eight examples of the type in existence and is currently located at the site of the recently closed Chanute Air Museum in Rantoul, Illinois. Until recently, the Ft. Worth Aviation Museum in Texas had hoped to acquire the bomber, as it was manufactured in the city and is considered “a great piece of pride”. However, a proposed $250,000 loan from the city to relocate the machine was eventually voted down when it was learned that the museum would be unable to pay back the money by a Sept 30th deadline.

Castle Air Museum director Joe Pruzzo says they are “ecstatic” to be receiving the aircraft, stating, “This fills a big hole in the collection. It will definitely be preserved.”

The museum will spend roughly $200,000 to relocate the B-58 and expects to have it by the end of July.

(via Star-Telegram and Your Central Valley)


On Tuesday, the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force held a grand opening ceremony for their new, 224,000 square foot fourth building, which officially opened to the public on Wednesday.

The $40.8 million building was privately funded by the Air Force Museum Foundation and, as previously reported, houses “more than 70 aircraft, missiles, and space vehicles in four new galleries – Presidential, Research and Development, Space and Global Reach, along with three science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) Learning Nodes.”

Among the highlights of the new gallery are the only remaining XB-70 Valkyrie and a number of presidential aircraft, including SAM 26000, the Air Force One Boeing VC-137C on which Lyndon Johnson was sworn in as the 36th president of the United States after the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

Although the building is now open, special activities and demonstrations are being planned for this weekend to continue celebrating the event.

Click here to watch Tuesday’s opening ceremony.


On Saturday, a 47-ton Airbus A300 was sunk in the Aegean Sea off the coast of Kusadasi, where it will become an artificial reef.

The aircraft was purchased from a private company and divided into parts that were then trucked to the location in western Turkey. Once ready, the 36-year-old airliner was lowered into the water by cranes, where it eventually settled 75ft beneath the surface.

It is hoped that the reef will draw fish and tourists to the country, which has reportedly seen a significant drop in foreign visitors due to a recent series of suicide bombings and conflict in the southeast and across the Syrian border.

Click here to watch the sinking.


Corridor Digital took playtime to a whole new level by staging a Star Wars dogfight with action figures, a pair of drones, digital effects and some expert flying.

The battle between an X-Wing and TIE Fighter is enhanced with digitally transposed, 3D printed cockpits and crash footage that’s been manipulated to represent TIE Fighters being blown out of the sky.

The truly awesome result can be seen after the jump, along with a behind the scenes look at the production process.

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