De Havilland DH.89 Dragon Rapide

  1. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    I love this plane. It's a short-haul 8 seater first flown in 1934 and I think it carries a touch of Art Deco about it. In fact, i don't think it would look out of place in the Batman animated series (whose style, the creators referred to as 'Dark Deco').

    I like it so much, I decided to build a model and managed to source a small kit in France. The instructions were in French (obviously) and black and white - which meant the colour paint guide was in various shades of grey. I spent weeks building it and a whole week alone was spent applying the rigging wires to the wings and tail (I used fly-tier's twine). It gave me an inkling of what it must be like to perform keyhole surgery.:D

    After applying the paint and decals, I stood back and groaned. The colour was meant to be matte aluminium, not grey. Still, since then I've discovered that there are some companies with grey livery that used the Rapide. A pity the decals don't contrast very well with it though.:(
    Rapide001.jpg
     
    Apr 12, 2018
    #1
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  2. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    A couple more shots where the rigging is a bit more visible.
    Rapide002.jpg
    Rapide003.jpg
     
    Apr 12, 2018
    #2
  3. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    Apr 12, 2018
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  4. Edward M. Grant

    Edward M. Grant Well-Known Member

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    I believe there's one still flying at one of the aviation museums in England, if you ever want to take a flight :).

    Think I made a model of it myself many years ago, but it probably didn't look that good :).
     
    Apr 12, 2018
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  5. Droflet

    Droflet I don't teach chickens how to dance.

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    I actually went for a flight in one of those when I was about twelve. I will always remember the cane seats and the way it would intermittently drop altitude. And it was sooo noisy. My first flight.
     
    Apr 12, 2018
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  6. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    I saw a documentary recently on the centenary of the RAF with Ewan McGregor and his brother and they flew in a Rapide so you guys are right, there's at least one still flying:)
     
    Apr 12, 2018
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  7. WaylanderToo

    WaylanderToo Well-Known Member

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    RAF Duxford if I'm not mistaken
     
    Apr 12, 2018
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  8. BAYLOR

    BAYLOR There Are Always new Things to Learn.

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    Apr 13, 2018
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  9. WarriorMouse

    WarriorMouse My education started the day I finished school.

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    There are a few still flying.
    A couple out of Duxford. One out of Compton and one out of Berkshire.
    There's one in Scotland and one in Spain and two in the US and one in South Africa.
    There was one in Australia but it crashed and was a total loss.
    There's a Canadian built one at the Bush Plane Museum in Canada its in flying condition.

    Its a toss up for me between the Dragon Rapid and the Beechcraft Stagger Wing as to which is the best looking plane ever built. It is the best of the Moth series.
     
    Apr 14, 2018
    #9
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  10. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    Ah yes. The Stagger Wing. A beautiful plane:)
     
    Apr 14, 2018
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  11. BigBadBob141

    BigBadBob141 Well-Known Member

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    I've always loved the looks of this plane.
    De Havilland was such a great designer.
    I also love the Tiger Moth, the DH88Comet racer, the Mosquito & the Comet air liner.
    They were all outstanding aircraft!
     
    Apr 14, 2018
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  12. Foxbat

    Foxbat None The Wiser

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    I love De Havilland aircraft. One of my other favourites is the Sea Vixen (which was called the Hawker Siddeley Sea Vixen after De Havilland was absorbed into the Hawker Siddeley corporation).

    The Comet (which also provided the airframe for the wonderful and greatly missed Nimrod) was my first experience of flying (I was nine at the time):)
     
    Apr 14, 2018
    #12
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  13. WarriorMouse

    WarriorMouse My education started the day I finished school.

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    I, many years ago, was gifted with a flight in the then oldest flight worthy Tiger Moth in Canada. The planes owner was no longer allowed to fly for medical reasons, so a friend of mine would go and exercise the Tiger Moth once a month. He invited me along for a ride. The plane was British built, open cockpit and had no radio.
    Flying along at 5,000 ft I suddenly hear a banging from behind me, I crane my head around and see my friend pointing off to the right, scanning where he's pointing I see a passenger jet off in the distance. There's another bang so I look back at friend and he gestures at jet then me/him then waves his hand then jet again, so both of us start waving as the jet goes by off to the right of us.
    After we landed he explained that He had in his flying jacket a portable radio that he used to keep in contact with the greater Toronto (Canada) area flight control. (A Tiger Moth is near invisible to radar and we were flying VFR) Because we would be flying within the Toronto area flight control he had logged a flight plan. He had been in contact with the flight controllers and had been told we would have a passenger jet that was in the Toronto landing pattern overtake us about a mile off. The flight control also told the passenger jet about overtaking us. The jets pilot then requested a channel to talk to us, as he could, at that time, not see us. Once that pilot and my friend were in contact they had a chat about type of plane we were in and that got the jets pilot excited and he proceeded to announce to his passengers that they were about to fly past the oldest Tiger Moth in Canada and that we would be waving as they flew past. He thanked my us for doing that after they had passed and we soon after dropped down to the small airstrip we were heading to.
    It is a fond memory for me although I found out with that flight that while I'm fine flying in passenger jets, small planes get my stomach doing flip flops and I go white as a sheet. Apparently my inner ear hates when the planes tail pitch's left or right in a cross wind.
     
    Apr 14, 2018
    #13

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