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Lindbergh

Lindbergh s nonstop flight across the Atlantic was successful because of his knowledge, his experience, his thoroughness and his luck.

Lindbergh had been a stunt pilot on the barnstorming circuit and had flown and navigated mail planes for years. So when he set out to win the twenty five thousand dollar prize offered for the first nonstop flight across the Atlantic, he knew he had enough experience to do it. Now he would have to pick the right plane.

He studied all the planes available. With a lot of research and prayer he chose the Ryan Monoplane. Lindbergh had the plane modified, and personally supervised all the modifications.

The planes wingspan was extended ten feet to help with take off and all around flight, and also because he might have heard the saying, wider is better. He increased the fuel capacity from fifty to four hundred and fifty gallons. This would allow him to fly the airplane for three hundred miles after he arrived in Paris. He put a two hundred-horse power, radial, air-cooled, Wright Whirlwind engine. The plane now had a top speed of one hundred thirty miles per hour. He added stronger landing gear to support the changes he had made, and he replaced the cockpit seat with a cane chair to further reduce weight.

Lindbergh was twenty-five years old when he flew from Long Island, New York to Orly Airport in Paris. He navigated with a magnetic compass and a mariner s sextant. He had no radio because the radios were as big as cows back then and also because there was nothing good on the radio then anyway. He brought a bottle of water and five sandwiches: two ham, two beef, and one egg with mayonnaise.

After leaving Long Island, the first land Lindbergh saw was Ireland, just as he had planned. He arrived at Orly Airport in Paris after about thirty hours. After the flight Lindbergh was made a hero. Songs of bravery were written about him. One of the most popular was lucky lindy.

To be the first person to fly across the Atlantic was an incredible thing. Lindbergh was the first in a long line of airplane pilots to set new records that none thought was possible.


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