ONCE again we sit down to record air transport history. Periodically it has been our practice to devote one issue of AVIATION to review the accomplishments of American airlines, to present to the reader an up-to-date picture of their attainments.
AMERICAN AIRLINES, operating subsidiary of Aviation Corporation, was organized on May 12, 1934, to carry U. S. air mail, passengers and express. It obtained contracts br eight air mail routes, all of which had been oper ated entirely or in part by its prede cessor company, American Airways.
W HEN the Post Office called for new bids on a number of air mail routes, Central Airlines was successful in obtaining the contract from Washing ton to Detroit via Pittsburgh, Akron and Cleveland. A portion of this line is ove: the mountains of Pennsylvania and Maryland.
T AN EXPENDITURE of $74O~. 000, Eastern Air Lines is now putting into effect its most ambitious program since beginning its operations in 1927: inauguration of passenger serv ice on all routes with two daily schedules between termini; purchase of eight Douglas Transports at a cost of $680,000; and speeding up of present Curtiss-Wright Condor equipment.
I NTER-ISLAND AIRWAYS, Ltd., has flown 1,250,000 miles and has car ried 47,000 passengers without a single casualty. This record is a tribute to the ceaseless efforts of the operating and maintenance personnel. It has gained the confidence of the public.
PACIFIC SEABOARD AIR LINES, Inc., was incorporated under the laws of California in June, 1933, for the purpose of operating a passenger and express service between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Operations over this route were started on June 25, 1933.
DURING the current year when technical activities of the Pan American Airways System so materially advanced toward the establishment of trans-ocean aerial trade routes, traffic developments on its great Latin American network fairly represented, for the first time, the complete operations over the air routes following a long period of pioneering.
THE PRESENT operations of the Pennsylvania Airlines & Transport Company on the route between Washington, D. C., and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, are the results of expansion and developments which have taken place since April 1, 1927. On that date, air mail service was inaugurated on one of the first of the routes known as CAM-11, between Cleveland and Pittsburgh.
OPERATIONS of the Sait Lake City-Great Falls airline were originally commenced Aug. 1, 1928, by National Parks Airways, Inc., and conducted continuously until the cancellation of the air mail contracts in February of this year. An effort to continue the operation of the route on a reduced schedule as a passenger and express service only was made for a short period thereafter, but it proved to be a losing venture, and operations were suspended on March 10 of this year.
ONE of the outstanding developments of this year has been the establishment of overnight transport schedules between the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts, made possible by the acquisition of the new TWA Douglas airliner, developed by the combined engineering resources of the TWA technical staff and the Douglas Aircraft Corporation.
UNITED AIR LINES, Inc., represents a consolidation of four companies, the Boeing Air Transport, Pacific Air Transport, National Air Transport and the Varney Air Lines. It now operates in 33 cities, situated in fourteen states, and one foreign country.
WYOMING AIR SERVICE was incorporated the early part of 1930. Regular scheduled flight operations began May 16, 1931, between Casper, Wyo., and Denver, Col. One round trip was flown daily using two Lycoming Stinson Juniors. Within three months, three ships and two pilots were added and the line was -extended to run north of Casper as far as Billings.
An account of its varied activities in the air transport field
THE Aeronautical Chamber of Commerce of America, under Leighton W. Rogers, as executive vice-president, with Fowler W. Barker as manager of the operations division, now represents well over 90 per cent of the scheduled miles flown daily within the United States and in addition counts among its membership the Pan American Airways System, Pacific Alaska Airways and Inter-Island Airways of the Hawaiian Islands.
Results of the decrease in postage rates effective June 1, 1934
POST OFFICE department statistics for three months following June 1, when air mail postage was dropped from 8 cents to 6 cents per letter, reveal a substantial gain in poundage, which has possibly not even now reached its full development.
The overseas visitor looks at air transport in America
GEORGE DE Ro
I FIND that air navigation in America, as far as the airlines are concerned, is at least three years in advance of that of the continent of Europe. I believe that this great progress is due in large part to the fact that 48 states form a single great state, so that the progress made in aeronautics does not have to be divided by 48, but the contributions of all may be merged into one.
Work now under way by the Bureau of Air Commerce to improve and to extend radio aids to air navigation is discussed
AN OCEAN LINER maintains contact with the shore and other ships through its radio operators; it may carry as many as three. On an air liner, the duties of “Sparks” usually are performed by the skipper and his mate, that is to say, by the pilot and co-pilot.
The trend toward “on top” flying in bad winter weather has greatly stimulated interest and progress in the campaign to develop complete protection against the hazards of ice accumulation. AVIATION presents here its latest notes on recent experiences and present practices.
THERE is rarely a simple answer to any complex technical problem. A half dozen years ago when the prevention of ice accumulation on airplanes was first being studied three different methods were proposed. Upon test they were found to vary widely in effectiveness, yet today all three find some application in the equipment being adopted by airlines.
Feeding air passengers, always a problem, is rapidly becoming a major consideration as competition becomes more intense. The author who has studied the matter from both the airline and the research-consumer point of view, believes that free picnic box lunches must give way to piping hot attractive meals served at the passengers’ expense.
William E. Berchtold
DEEP-DISH apple pie, mountain trout broiled in butter and baked “over-size” Idaho potatoes have been credited with the power to divert passenger traffic from one railroad to another. Cuisine is an even more important consideration among trans-Atlantic steamship services, where table delicacies are rated second only to speed in determining passengers’ choice of liners.
RECENT authorization of additional air mail schedules by the Post Office Department, and its announced intentions of making further additions, hold out some promise for improved earnings for various air mail operators who have been suffering losses under the present contracts.
OPERATION AT DESIRED CRUISING CONDITIONS, PART EIGHT
Edmund T. Allen
W. Bailey Oswald
THE “point-to-point” cruising speed of an airplane is only partially determined when the speed and the engine and airplane characteristics are known in level flight. Cruising charts for the level flight condition have been fully treated in preceding articles.
THERE ARE a number of yardsticks by which the success of an international air race might be measured. Its monetary cost might be weighed against the value of its stimulus to technical progress. The effect of its overall safety record on the general public's attitude toward air travel might be estimated.
FEDERAL AVIATION COMMISSION . . . Representatives of the industry testify at public hearings.SERVICES . . . Army carries out more Baker Board recommendations. D. OF C. . . . Hammond Aircraft Corporation wins small plane competition. FEDERATION AERONAUTIQUE INTERNATIONALE . . . 34th conference at Washington. AIR MAIL AND TRANSPORT . . . Airlines speed schedules with new equipment. FOREIGN . . . South Atlantic mail operations progress . . . Italy breaks two world records.
DURING its first four weeks of public hearings, the Federal Aviation Commission received verbal and written testimony from many leaders in the aeronautical field. First to be heard were representatives of the Bureau of Air Commerce, including Secretary of Commerce Roper, Assistant Secretary Ewing Y. Mitchell, Director Vidal, and several of his assistants.
Last month President Roosevelt approved the Baker Board report, authorizing an ultimate quota of 2,300 firstclass aircraft for the Air Corps. With Presidential approval, the War Department proceeded to carry out other Baker Board recommendations.
Hammond Aircraft Corporation of Ypsilanti, Mich., was the winner of the competition sponsored by the Bureau of Air Commerce to procure equipment for its inspectors, and at the same time to encourage the development of an economical, safe airplane for the private owner.
Delegates to the 34th convention of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale, governing body for world aviation, met in Washington, Oct. 6-11 as guests of the National Aeronautic Association, its LT.S. affiliate. Leaders from 22 of the 34 national cluhs represented in the Federation were present, including Prince Bibesco, of Roumania, its president, Paul Tissandier, of France, its secretary-general, and Louis Blériot. United States delegates were Godfrey L. Cabot, Hiram Bingham, F. Trubee Davison, Edward P. Warner.
At the annual meeting of the National Aeronautic Association Oct. 11-13, Senator William G. McAdoo, who has longbeen an enthusiastic plane owner, was elected president. He succeeds former Senator Hiram Bingham, holder of the office for the past two years.
Airlines progress toward early inauguration of faster schedules as orders for new high speed transports are filled. On the West Coast, American Airlines took delivery on the first of ten Douglas transports to be placed in service within the next two months.
With a new high speed Vultee transport on American Airlines’ route between Montreal and New York, the run is now made in one hour less than formerly. The northbound trip takes two hours, 50 minutes, the southbound, three hours. Over this route next spring the company plans to expedite delivery of European mails arriving via Canadian Pacific steamers by making connections at Montreal with the Canadian Airways Rimouski service.
The eastern terminus of TWA will be moved from Newark Airport to Floyd Bennett Field, New York City’s municipal airport in Brooklyn, some time this fall if the company’s negotiations with the city and the Post Office department come to a successful conclusion.
The attempt of Transcontinental & Western Air to nullify Postmaster General Farley’s cancellation of its air mail contract last February was finally defeated Oct. 15 when the Supreme Court refused to consider the company’s appeal. The case was first heard in March before the Federal Court of the Southern District of New York, which denied the injunction to restrain Mr. Farley and Postmaster Kiely of New York from executing the cancellation order on the grounds that the suit was essentially one against the government which cannot be sued without its consent.
As a result of charges filed by the Air Line Pilots’ Association and Bowen Air Lines, Karl A. Crowley, Solicitor for the Post Office department, ordered Long & Harmon, air mail contractors on the Amarillo-Brownsville, Tex., route, to appear at a public hearing Oct. 25 to show cause why their contract should not be cancelled. David L. Bencke, president of the ALPA, claimed that the company had failed to comply with the pilots’ wage scale fixed by the National Labor Board last May.
Several more successful south Atlantic crossings have been carried out in the past few weeks by the French on their mail service between Paris and South America. The Croix du Sud (Latecoere flying-boat, four Hispano-Suiza engines) left Natal, Brazil, Sept. 19, arrived at Dakar 23 hours, 29 minutes later, to complete its sixth crossing.
A new international record was established by Italy Oct. 23. Lt. Francesco Agello, leader of the speed school at Desenzano on Lake Garda, flew his Macchi-Castoldi 72 seaplane at the new high speed of 440 m.p.h. The plane was the same one he had used in setting the former world’s record of 423.8 m.p.h. April 10, 1933.
The James Gordon Bennett Cup was won by Poland for the second year in succession at the 22d annual race for the trophy which started from Warsaw Sept. 23. The winning balloon Kosciuszko, piloted by Captain Hynek and Lieutenant Pomaski, traveled 1,331.80 km. (827 miles) in a northeasterly direction and came down in Russia after about 44 hours in the air.
An eleven-day meet held by the Soaring Society of America at Big Meadows, Va., late in September opened up another promising site to soaring enthusiasts. Though only two of the eleven days of the meet produced the northwest wind necessary for take-off, 21 hours of soaring were logged by the eighteen pilots participating.
Best financial returns since 1929 were shown by the 1934 report of the National Air Races. The report lists a net profit of $12,157, with the indication that the sum may be increased when certain bills are collected. Grandstand and field expenses were $65,855 ; publicity $12,255 ; operating personnel $24,999; general and administrative expenses $45,000.
• DR. HUGO ECKENER, commander of the Graf Zeppelin, recently arrived in the United States to confer with F. W. VON MEISTER, his New York representative, officials of the Navy Department, and PAUL LITCHFIELD, president of the Goodyear Zeppelin Corporation at Akron, on terminal arrangements here for the new Zeppelin LZ 129.
Sponsored by the Washington Women’s Pilots Association, an all-women’s air meet was held at College Park, Md., Airport Oct. 13-14. The races were preceded by a meeting of the Middle Eastern Section of the NinetyNiners, presided over by President Margaret Cooper and Dorothy Leh, governor of the district.
WE SEE by the papers that one of the competitors in the EnglandAustralia Derby was expected to land at an intermediate point “where fresh fuel will be waiting for him.” Has aviation now reached the point where we are going to have to have “fresh” fuel in order to “eliminate the harsh irritants” from our motors ? Heaven help us if we are going to begin to “look for the date on the can” in order to prevent aeronautical halitosis, pink tooth brush, or B.O.
WHEN the Bureau of Air Commerce sent out a call last spring for bids on 25 airplanes for the use of its inspectors and officials, the accompany ing specifications provoked more dis cussion among American aeronautical engineers than anything of the sort since the publication of the rules for the Gug genheim Safe Aircraft Competition, half a dozen years ago.
O NE of the most hopeful present signs of renewed activity in the private plane market is the constantly increas ing number of men and manufacturing units, for sometime feared lost to the in dustry, who have return to the battle. The announcement that Michael Gregor has formed the Gregor Aircraft Cor poration, leased shop space at Roosevelt Field, and is starting production on five planes is especially encouraging.
To AMERICANS one of the biggest disappointments of the MacRobertson Race was the forced withdrawal before the start of Col. Fitzmaurice’s Bellanca monoplane. Regardless of the pros and cons of the ruling which caused the withdrawal, the absence of one of the most formidable American designs was a definite and irreparable loss to the contest’s value.
To THEIR long line of power plant accessories, the Eclipse Aviation Corporation of East Orange, N. J., has recently added a fully automatic variable pitch propeller hub. The design of the mechanism is extremely simple. The hub and blades are allowed to slide axially forward against a set of springs in response to the thrust reaction.
In Cooperation with the Maintenance Committee of the Aeronautical Chamber of Commerce
FROM Clarence Belinn, superintendent of maintenance of National Airways, Inc., based at the Boston Municipal Airport, comes a photograph of an interesting portable welding outfit which has been found very useful around his shop. The equipment consists of a sight feed carbide generator and regular oxygen bottle mounted on a dolly which has been made up from aircraft steel tubing and a pair of Stinson Model T tailwheels.
SHOPS doing extensive metal work on engine cowls may find a useful idea in the jig which has been developed in the shops of Northwest Airlines at St. Paul. The arrangement is extraordinarily simple and can be made up in any carpenter shop from a few pieces of flat board, two or three bolts and some heavy door hinges.
THE Brownsville Base of Pan American Airways has just put into operation a new engine test installation which incorporates a number of interesting details. The hollow-tile, steelframed building is divided into two main rooms,—one housing the engine stand and the other the controls.
THERE are almost as many different kinds of portable work lights in use around airline shops as there are shops to use them. A group of three selected at random from widely distributed shops illustrate several practical ideas.
THE Atlanta shop of Eastern Airlines has developed a convenient method of repainting engine cylinder assemblies during overhaul. After cleaning, the cylinders are placed on a rack which forms the top of a wooden table mounted on casters.
PAN-AMERICAN AIRWAYS’ ships go to sea in the same sense as do ocean liners. They operate for many hours out of touch with maintenance bases and crews must be prepared to make minor emergency repairs away from home. Each ship, therefore, is provided with a complete repair kit which contains not only a full complement of tools, but also a certain number of spare parts, including one complete engine cylinder, a spare fuel pump assembly, spare control cables and rubber hose.
HYDRAULIC equipment for operating flaps, retracting landing gear, etc., consists of combination hand pump and control valve (for cockpit mounting), oil reservoir, and actuating cylinder. Complete unit (without piping) weighs ll¼ lb. Pump and valve unit alone weighs 7¼ lb. Pump has positive displacement of 0.46 cu.in. for pressures up to 3,000 lb. per sq.in.