How does one get over 300 tons of metals and plastic into the air, and more importantly keep it there? Magic innit? Well Boeing came up with that magic and Haynes have produced a book detailing the journey it took to get this behemoth into the air.
This book looks at why such a large plane was needed at all and the pressures to get it into service. Chapter One starts “When the first Boeing 747 touched down at Heathrow Airport from New York on 22 January 1970, it heralded the beginning of a popular revolution in long-haul air travel.”
That is probably the biggest understatement in the book! Just 67 years after the Wright Brothers had made the first powered flight this monster of an aircraft takes to the passenger routes of the world – what a story!
This is a great history and Haynes have brought together in one book the story of the plane, its design, build and maintenance and also how it improved, changed, grew impossibly bigger and covered air transport from passenger, to cargo to President of the USA in Air Force One.
If you are the slightest bit interested in the history of air travel then this book is for you. Packed with facts, figures, pictures, diagrams and explanations of how and why various parts of the aircraft work.
The aircraft has been in service now for over 4 decades so there is a chapter on the recycling old 747s which, while very interesting, is a touch harrowing. Still nice to know that one of the world’s main companies in this market are English, based in Gloucestershire.
A good book, well worth the read and worth having on your book shelf. Couldn’t find the bit on how to kick-start a Jumbo though!
4 Mr MRHs Lotus 72 Formula 1 Racing Car
For those F1 fans of a certain age you may remember the likes of Jochen Rindt, Emerson Fittipaldi, Ronnie Peterson, all famous F1 drivers who also drove for Lotus. This was in the days when technology was just starting to fix its hold on F1 and the driver was probably still the most important part of the team – whereas nowadays the driver just seems to be there to make up the numbers as the cars are almost robots.
Lotus produced a car which was initially not that successful but they stuck with it and the car eventually, for a few years, was the one that was consistently at the top of the constructors’ table. This book covers the history of F1 with an emphasis on Lotus followed by the anatomy of a Lotus F1 car, as ever complete with pictures, diagrams and cutaway drawings. The Hallmark of Haynes OWMs.
Following on from this is a section on the drivers’ views – what did they think of the car and other drivers. How did they perform in races. What it was like to be a F1 driver at that time! Drivers being a very important part of the team is evident, but the car would go nowhere without the engineers. So there is a section by the engineers giving their views, how they overcame problems, how they prepared the cars for races and recovered them after races getting ready for the next one. There is also a section on the Historical Societies that maintain, restore and keep alive the F1 cars so future generations can see what an iconic thing they were. This book is part of that task of maintaining the memory and the pictures of the car done up in the John Player Special livery bring back memories of Murray Walker screaming – literally - through each race commentary.
Finally there is a section on the individual chassis histories. There were not that many cars actually built and this takes the reader through the trials and tribulations of each chassis, saying where the chassis is now – if it survived.
A thoroughly interesting book which brought back many memories. A must for any F1 fan.
4.5 Mr MRHs from me