Monday, May 18, 2009


We are getting our Finnish Fouga ready to fly more often.

Shown here when it first moved to the museum in '07, it is still one of the most asked about aircraft because of it unique V-tail design.

Jon is one of our all-around generalists, he can fly-em and he can fix-em. Recently he tackled the task of replacing the on-board batteries. Originally equipped with finicky (and expensive) Ni-Cads, we recently found it was time to replace the batteries once again.

Here, Jon is installing our favorite replacement, an "Odyssey" battery set. With roots in the Hawker Siddeley group, Odyssey manufactures batteries used in demanding commercial applications.

As anyone who has dealt with the "system" can tell you, it takes additional time and money for a product to receive Mil-spec or FAA-PMA approval. In the best of all possible worlds, "COTS" or "Commercial Off The Shelf" technology can be one or two generations ahead of governmental procurement. Fortunately for us, this is one of those times that we can take advantage of a well developed commercial technology.

Perched on the Fouga, working in the battery compartment, Jon looks ready to imitate Major Kong in the 1964 classic cold war movie "Dr. Strangelove".

From "Dr Strangelove" - courtesy of YouTube, with dialogue for our German friends. The director of this movie made heavy use of comedy and irony.