Monday, February 18, 2019

About Swedish Pilots & Aircraft....

Thanks to CARGO for the link!

Squadron exchanges were a regular occurrence at Coltishall,
and while on 41 Mike participated in a particularly interesting one
with F6 wing of the Swedish Air Force at Karlsborg, flying the AJ37
Viggen. Right from the start, he and his colleagues realised that much
was exceptional about the way the Swedes trained and operated, not
least considering that the majority of the pilots were effectively doing
national service. ‘When you looked at the people who were flying the
aeroplanes, I thought that we could learn from this, definitely. The
guy who flew me was a Honda 500cc works motorcycle rider; they
had rally drivers, go-kart racers, all kinds of things. These weren’t
people with good degrees in underwater basket-weaving, these were
people who were recruited to fly the Viggen. ‘The first to go up in the Viggen was our boss, Hilton Moses. I
remember going out with him to the aeroplane and seeing him laughing and smiling, and then seeing him getting out and coming back to
the crewroom looking like he’d just been put through some kind of
crazy combination between a fairground ride and a washing machine.
Then I went flying in the afternoon, and it changed my life.
‘They would fly around at Mach 0.95, 650kt give or take a bit, and
they trained at 10m. We flew through firebreaks in trees, we flew all
over northern Sweden at 30ft, and we never went below 600kt. All of
this, I should add, was done under about a 150 to 200ft overcast with
no breaks. In the RAF, anybody who wanted to get old would not have
flown in that weather. After about 40 minutes, we pulled up into cloud,
and the pilot then flew a 4-degree hands-off approach with his hands on
his head into a remote airstrip, landed, reversed into a parking bay, did
an engine-running refuel without any communication with the people
on the ground except hand signals, taxied out and took off in the direction that we’d landed in. Wind
direction just wasn’t factored.
Then we did some approaches
onto roadways, flying at 15 or
20ft to clear the cars and warn
them that there were going
to be some aeroplane movements before doing practice
approaches. And the aerobatics
beggared belief.
‘The next day, it was time
to take the Swedish pilots flying
in the Jaguar. I was at a bit of a
loss as t o how I was going to
explain to this guy that we
flew at 420kt when they flew
at 620kt. So I decided that the
way ahead was to leave the
part-throttle reheat in, accelerate to 620kt and then give
him the aeroplane. That’s what
I did — I took off, and gave
him control at 620kt and about
150ft. He pushed the nose
down, took the Jaguar down to
30ft and proceeded to fly it at
about 30 to 40ft and 600kt-plus quite happily. It knocked all the myths
about who’s got the best aeroplanes, who’s got the best-trained pilots
and so on. The Swedish Air Force had aeroplanes that were light years
ahead of anything the RAF had, or was going to get, or has got now,
and their pilots were in a totally different league to us. This was not
just an individual — I flew with three of them, and all three were like
that. Each of them was able to fly the Jaguar faster and lower from the
back seat than I cou ld from the front seat.
‘After that experience, I didn’t think that I would be able to cope
with continuing in the Jaguar

Simply amazing.  It's definitely an eye opener to read stuff like this.  Impressive.

No comments :

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.