Aviation In Ww1 - Vintage Airfix


Aviation in WWI books

All these titles are available to purchase from Pen and Sword.

Contents:
- The Adventures and Inventions of Stewart Blacker - By Barnaby Blacker..
- The Birth of the Royal Air Force - By Ian Philpott..
- The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter Pilot - By Christopher M Burgess..
- The Red Baron - By Manfred Von Richthofen..
- The Red Baron - A History in Pictures - By Norman Franks..
- The Red Baron - Images - By Barry Pickthall..
- The Royal Air Force - Volume I - By Ian Philpott..
- The Royal Air Force - Volume II - By Ian Philpott..
- The Royal Navy's Air Service in the Great War - By David Hobbs..
- The World War I Aviator’s Pocket Manual - By Chris McNab..
- Three's Company - By Jack T C Long..
- Voices in Flight - By Mauriel Joslyn, Anna Malinovska..
- Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War I - By Martin Bowman..
- Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great War - By Malcolm Smith..
- War Birds - By Mark Hillier..

 


 

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The Adventures and Inventions of Stewart Blacker

By Barnaby Blacker

The Adventures and Inventions of Stewart BlackerDescription:

Stewart Blacker was a remarkable figure. His inventions were used with significant effect both in WW1 and WW2. Most notable of these was the synchronised machine gun, attached to fighter planes that could fire through the propeller.
He also designed the PIAT anti tank weapon which was used with dramatic effect during WW2, from Normandy until the end of the war. The book argues that with less obstruction from officialdom, the PIAT could have been ready at the start of the war to stop Blitzkreig in its tracks.

As an aviation pioneer, flying (and crashing) planes soon after the Wright Brothers, he found himself in charge his Majesty's Air Force at the outset of WW1. Later after having seen the awful slaughter occurring in the trenches and feeling guilty he had chosen the easy option, he joined up with his old regiment and fought at Neuve Chapelle until he was injured in 1917.

During the interwar years he continued to fly and develop weapons and was the first man to fly over the top of Everest.

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The Birth of the Royal Air Force

By Ian Philpott

The Birth of the Royal Air ForceDescription:

Ian Philpott presents us here with a compendium of facts, operational histories and photo illustrations, combined to create a comprehensive account of the early years of the Royal Air Force. Illustrated throughout, it features details of all military operations from 1914 to 1918 which impacted upon the organisation. Also included are operational details of the Independent Bomber Force throughout 1918, a supplementary historical strand that is sure to appeal to Aviation enthusiasts with a taste for features of niche focus. Details of the airfields, landing grounds, seaplane bases and various other landmarks of this era are given, and readers are encouraged to use the work as a reference book, being as it is a weighty tome of encyclopedic scope. 

Sure to make a welcome addition to any aviation enthusiast's library, this well-researched piece of work has been a long time in the making. Philpott brings his typical flair to the project, leaving no stone unturned when it comes to this dynamic, defining period of Royal Air Force history.

As featured in the East Kent Mercury and Essence Magazine.

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The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter Pilot

By Christopher M Burgess

The Diary and Letters of a World War I Fighter PilotDescription:

This is a first-hand account of the author's grandfather, Guy Mainwaring Knocker, and his experiences as a 17-18 year old pilot in the RFC in the First World War, compiled as a series of letters and diary entries. They follow life from his first day of training in April 1917, through his period of active service with 65 Squadron RFC in France from Oct 1917 - April 1918. The account continues to the end of that year, after he was wounded and sent back to England, where he continued flying and training other pilots. Guy wrote virtually every day to his parents, and the letters were also illustrated with amusing sketches in pencil or pen and ink. The diary entries help give a fuller picture of the daily life of a young officer at that time including his emotions, girlfriends, life in the mess, dinner, dances, theatre and visits home. There are remarkable and hair-raising accounts of dogfights and offensive patrols over the lines, but also the drudgery of daily life at other times when it was too 'dud' for flying. The book includes the names of colleagues and friends, so many of whom did not survive that War.

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The Red Baron

By Manfred Von Richthofen

The Red BaronDescription:

Manfred von Richthofen - the Red Baron - was the most celebrated fighter pilot of the First World War, and was holder of the Blue Max, Pour le Mérite, Germany's highest military decoration. He was credited with 80 victories in the air, before being shot down in disputed circumstances aged 26. In this autobiography Richthofen tells not only his own story but also that of his contemporaries, their duels in the sky, ever present danger, fame, honour and spiralling death.

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The Red Baron - A History in Pictures

By Norman Franks

The Red Baron - A History in PicturesDescription:

Keen First World War aviation enthusiasts will be familiar with Norman Franks’ previous books covering the life of Rittmeister Manfred Freiherr von Richthofen, so why this new one? Well Manfred, the iconic Red Baron, has constantly remained at the forefront of First World War studies and, in commemorating the one hundred years that have elapsed since the beginning of hostilities, it seems like a good time to introduce a new arrangement of photographs covering the entire span of von Richthofen’s war (most of which will have been seen, but spread over a whole variety of books and magazines about First World War flying), consolidated in one book.

In the time that has elapsed since the release of Franks’ earlier titles on a similar theme, a constant trickle of new information has filtered down to him. Although none of it specifically challenges the conclusions drawn in earlier publications, in consolidating them here he’s been able to preserve some significant notes of interest.

Following a number of visits to Belgium and Northern France in recent years, Franks has managed to acquire additional images, illustrating the places in which the Red Baron lived and fought between 1916 and 1918. This collection represents the entire span of von Richthofen's recorded history in pictures, some new and lesser-known, some iconic and widely circulated; all housed here under one roof, for the very first time.

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The Red Baron - Images

By Barry Pickthall

The Red Baron - ImagesDescription:

Beginning his wartime career on the Western Front in August 1916, Manfred von Richthofen, or the Red Baron as he became known, had shot down an impressive total of fifteen aircraft by January 1917, as well as being appointed commander of his own unit. By the time of his death in 1918, he had destroyed a staggering total of eighty allied aircraft. From the perspective of the allies, he was a deadly menace. For the Germans, he was a fighter pilot hero of legendary significance. This fascinating collection of rare images offers a fresh perspective on the Baron himself, as well as a number of his adversaries from the Allied side of the line.

Found by chance at a car boot sale by the author, an esteemed journalist and keen amateur aviator, this collection has sat, mostly unused, for almost a century. Until now. This intriguing addition to the Images of War series is set to ignite new discussions about this most legendary of fighter aces as we approach the centenary of his death, and the ending of the First World War, in 2018.

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The Royal Air Force - Volume I

By Ian Philpott

The Royal Air Force - Volume IDescription:

The inter-war years between 1918 and 1939 saw the newly created Royal Air Force fighting for its very existence politically, being despatched to the remotest corners of the British Empire and its Protectorates in various policing roles and then finally engaged in a head-long rush to modernize in the face of the new German Fascist regime that was threatening British and European freedom. Yet this important period in RAF history and its effect on political and military rationale during the period has never been completely documented. This exhaustive and comprehensive reference is the most detailed work to be published on the subject. The author gives full information on the changing structure of the Force during the period, squadron operations, political machinations and their effects, the aeroplanes and their equipment, the personnel, technical advances in navigation and breakthroughs achieved in engine performance. The book is cross-referenced throughout, extremely well illustrated and contains an abundance of location maps and other diagrams. This book will become a Bible for anyone interested in the history of the RAF.

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The Royal Air Force - Volume II

By Ian Philpott

The Royal Air Force - Volume IIDescription:

Volume II of this mammoth reference work covers the years in which the League of Nations failed because of the emerging dictatorships in Germany and Italy and the expansionist policies adopted by Japan. Britain was still reeling from the consequences of World War I and the RAF was sadly far behind the other major world powers in aircraft design, still relying on bi-planes that were direct descendants of World War I thinking. It gradually became apparent that, despite UK government dithering, the RAF needed to develop new aircraft, engines and increase production to confront the bully-boy tactics of the Axis powers. As the turn of the decade approached extraordinary measures were taken to enable RAF to defend Britain's skies and this her freedom. As with Volume 1, this book covers every conceivable part of the RAF's history through these pre-War days. It looks at the development and invention of new equipment such as radar, monoplane fighters, metal construction and the heavy bomber. This was an era when science in aviation was rushing ahead and fortunately for Britain's freedom, it laid the foundations of victory in 1.945.

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The Royal Navy's Air Service in the Great War

By David Hobbs

The Royal Navy's Air Service in the Great WarDescription:

In a few short years after 1914 the Royal Navy practically invented naval air warfare, not only producing the first effective aircraft carriers, but also pioneering most of the techniques and tactics that made naval air power a reality. By 1918 the RN was so far ahead of other navies that a US Navy observer sent to study the British use of aircraft at sea concluded that ‘any discussion of the subject must first consider their methods’. Indeed, by the time the war ended the RN was training for a carrier-borne attack by torpedo-bombers on the German fleet in its bases – over two decades before the first successful employment of this tactic, against the Italians at Taranto.

Following two previously well-received histories of British naval aviation, David Hobbs here turns his attention to the operational and technical achievements of the Royal Naval Air Service, both at sea and ashore, from 1914 to 1918. Detailed explanations of operations, the technology that underpinned them and the people who carried them out bring into sharp focus a revolutionary period of development that changed naval warfare forever. Controversially, the RNAS was subsumed into the newly created Royal Air Force in 1918, so as the centenary of its extinction approaches, this book is a timely reminder of its true significance.

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The World War I Aviator’s Pocket Manual

By Chris McNab

The World War I Aviator’s Pocket ManualDescription:

Pulling together information from British manuals such as A Few Hints for the Flying Officer and Practical Flying, as well as American, German and French training guides, this pocket manual opens up the world of the Great War aviator, with extracts and images from WWI training manuals for pilots, with modern introductions to the manuals by Chris McNab, setting them in context and providing background.

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Three's Company

By Jack T C Long

Three's CompanyDescription:

No 3 Squadron was formed at Larkhill in 1912 from the No 2 (Aeroplane} Company under the command of the famous Major Robert Brooke-Popham. More importantly the squadron was the first in the RFC to be equipped with fixed-wing aircraft. Thereafter the squadron distinguished itself in both World Wars, its battle honors including Mons, Neuve Chappelle, Loos, Somme 1916, Cambrai 1917, Somme 1918, The Battle of Britain, Normandy and Arnhem. More recently it has seen service in the Falklands, the Balkans, Iraq, and has just returned from Afghanistan. No 3 Squadron have recently been nominated to operate the Eurofighter Typhoon. This book is a highly-illustrated history of the Squadron's operations throughout its history. The rare photographs have been collected by the author over many years and the text includes firsthand accounts from the Squadron archives. This book is the ultimate record of one of the world's oldest and proudest military flying units.

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Voices in Flight

By Mauriel Joslyn, Anna Malinovska

Voices in FlightDescription:

Thanks to the foresight of the authors, Voices in Flight is a literary memorial to the hugely gallant men who fought their war in small dangerous and vulnerable aeroplanes. We hear told the stories and thoughts of not only pilots but ground crew and others closely associated with this form of combat. These interviews bring home vividly the comraderie, the humour, the sadness but above all the thrill of flying experienced by members of the RFC and later the fledgling RAF. First hand accounts of dog fights make graphic reading. This is a never-to-be repeated opportunity to honour the memories of old aviators by bringing their experiences to the attention of younger generations.

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Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War I

By Martin Bowman

Voices in Flight: Escaping Soldiers and Airmen of World War IDescription:

This thrilling new volume from Martin Bowman focusses on British, Canadian, Australian and German soldiers and airmen who were captured during the First World War. Determined that they wouldn’t spend the rest of the conflict incarcerated uselessly behind bars, they endeavoured to escape. These are their stories.

All aspects of prison life are covered here, and the author examines the various escape tactics that were employed by British soldiers and airmen held in PoW camps all over Germany and Turkey. In order to provide a balanced account, the author has also uncovered stories of German navy and army escapees who attempted to flee from England.

Each chapter is preceded by an account which explains the types of camps used in Britain and Germany, the numbers involved, the food, the camp money system for worker prisoners and a general appreciation of the conditions and chronology. First-hand accounts from the prisoners themselves are then woven into the picture, creating an authentic sense of the PoW experience.

The emphasis of this unique book is placed on the human story of the main characters, the unparalleled action on the Western Front and the interaction and camaraderie experienced between soldiers and airmen held in prison camps in England, Germany and Turkey during the First World War.

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Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great War

By Malcolm Smith

Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great WarDescription:

Following in the same style as his previous book of Fleet Air Arm recollections, Malcolm Smith has collected a compendium of reminiscences from pilots who flew for the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines during the First World War. He includes first-hand testimonies from pilots manning early seaplane stations, an enthralling account from F.J. Rutland (the 'Rutland of Jutland'), who became the first pilot to take off in a Sopwith Pup from a platform on the roof of one of HMS Yarmouth's gun turrets, the true tale behind Rudyard Kipling's short story 'A Flight of Fact' (concerning Guy Duncan-Smith's experience of becoming marooned in the Maldives following a dramatic shoot-down), amongst many other personalized and illuminating stories. 

All these anecdotes are drawn from the extensive archive maintained by the Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton, Somerset. The archive contains an enormous quantity of material, in the form of handwritten diaries, transcripts, log books and documentation of many kinds. Alongside the written material, the Museum maintains an unrivaled photographic archive and a representative sample of these images is included in the book.

Excerpts from diaries, transcripts of spoken first-hand accounts and other recorded narratives make up the bulk of the book, with whole chapters dedicated to some of the most vocal members to see service during the course of the RNAS's Great War history. Guy Leather, a pilot destined to track an impressive trajectory with the RNAS features in one such chapter; his day to day accounts relay the full gamut of pilot experience at this time. 

This humane and thoughtful consolidation of pilot reflections is sure to appeal broadly, particularly as we approach the one hundredth year anniversary of the First World War.

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War Birds

By Mark Hillier

War BirdsDescription:

Following the declaration of war by the United States, more than 200 American men, unwilling to wait until US squadrons could be raised, volunteered to join the Royal Flying Corps in the summer of 1917. Amongst these men was John MacGavock Grider and Elliott White Springs who both joined 85 Squadron to fly SE.5 fighters.

During his service with the RFC and the RAF, Grider kept a record of his experiences from when he joined up until his untimely death in 1918, when he was shot down over the Western Front. Before his death, Grider had made a pact with Elliott White Springs that in the event of one of them dying, the other would complete their writings. Springs went on to write this book, an amalgamation of his own recollections and Grider’s diary and correspondence.

War Birds records in detail the stresses of training and the terror and elation of failure and success during combats with the enemy the First World War. This unique edition of War Birds has been produced from a copy owned by another officer from 85 Squadron, Lieutenant Horace Fulford. In his copy, Fulford made numerous hand-written annotations and stuck in a number of previously unpublished photographs – all of which have been faithfully reproduced.

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