Saturday, May 3, 2008

Light of the Crusader

The Vought F-8 Crusader was a single-seat, single-engine, jet fighter. It carried canon, something its replacement, the F-4 Phantom, could not boast. Its pilots called themselves Gunfighters. They were good at their profession, and to add to their status, their aircraft was never asked to drop bombs down in the weeds like F-4 Phantom crews were. And, unlike the Phantom, it took one man to fly, not a team. That meant if you came back from your mission, it was all because of the pilot's skill, not because of the fact that he had a GIB (guy in back) to help him read a map, or remind him which buttons not to push.

On our spectacular trip to Arizona a month ago, I bought the wingtip of an F-8 crusader. The F-8 has been retired for several years. The last flight of an F-8 anywhere took place in 1999. I believe it was a NASA bird, in service long after the majority of its brethren had been to the boneyard. The wing tip I have is not big, nor particularly special. It is about 12 inches long, 4 inches wide and about 2 inches thick. It did, however, retain a wingtip light. I managed to break the bulb, but it had corroded, so it wasn’t because I was being rough.

Today I picked up a chandelier socket on a wire and a bulb. I removed the old bulb holder and replaced it with my new one. It functions quite nicely. It gets a bit warm, but, it looks neat. What do you think?


Cora said...

I hate to admit it but it looks kinda neat. That does not mean it belongs in the living room or any other room in the house for that matter :0)

grandma said...

Ingenious!! You get credit for cleverness and originality. You may not be a Thomas Edison yet, but you're getting there !!