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Sailplanes 1965 - 2000 (Volume 3)
Author: Martin Simons
Hard Cover, 270 pages, hundreds of color photos and scale line art drawings, Copyright 2004
Dimensions: 9.61 x 11.89 x 0.79 inches (244 x 302 x 20 mm)
Table of Contents #1
Table of Contents #2
Example Page 161
Example Page 162
About the Author
Back Cover

Overview from the Back Cover
The third of the series, 'Sailplanes' brings the story up to the end of the 20th Century.  Plastic structures became orthodox.  Glass was supplemented with carbon and aramid (Kevlar) fibers as reinforcing materials.  The improved strength and accuracy of structures allow advantage to be taken of new wing profiles.  Retracting motors became more acceptable.

Pilots, modelers and aviation enthusiasts will find descriptions, pictures and excellent scale drawings showing most successful designs, and some not so successful such as the tailless and variable geometry sailplanes, and some less expensive from the flourishing homebuilding scene in the USA and Australia.

Champion pilots have showed how the new aircraft should be exploited.  Records for distance and speeds around closed circuits were broken time and again by some of these outstanding sailplanes.  Many of them are still available and it is useful to have this background information. 

Review by Paul Remde
I have always been a fan of the old "Wings" TV programs that document the development and refinement of unique aircraft.  It is interesting to learn about the many failures and lessons learned during the development process - and to see interesting film footage of the flights of the aircraft.  I find the "Sailplanes" series of books by Martin Simons to be similar to the "Wings" programs because they allow the reader to travel back in time to learn about the development of sailplanes over the years.  The books are created for anyone that is interested in sailplanes.  Martin created hundreds of scale line-art drawings of the sailplanes that show the elegant lines and design details of the aircraft.  The drawings are detailed enough to be used by modelers to create accurate scale models.  I have just finished reading all 3 'Sailplanes' books from cover to cover.  I thoroughly enjoyed every page.  I thought I had previously seen photos and details on most of the sailplanes in the world - boy was I wrong!  I learned of many obscure and interesting sailplanes from manufacturers and private builders around the world.  I especially enjoyed the overview information found in the Preface and Introduction sections at the beginning of each book.  The books are well organized so that they can be used as a reference when looking for information on any rare or not-so-rare sailplane.  The books are not inexpensive, but they are worth every penny.

About the Author
Martin Simons has been involved in gliding for more than fifty years.  With the Gold C badge and two diamonds (missed the height badge by a few hundred feet), he has flown about one hundred different types of sailplanes, including thirty two of those described in this volume, in ten different countries.

English by birth he lives in Adelaide, South Australia, with dual citizenship.  In addition to the previous two volumes 'Sailplanes', (1920 - 1945, & 1945 - 1965) his earlier books include 'Slingsby Sailplanes', on the British glider manufacturing company, and he collaborated with Paul Schweizer to produce 'Sailplanes by Schweizer', about the leading American manufacturer.  He is also a keen model sailplane designer, builder and flier.  He wrote 'Model Aircraft Aerodynamics', the only work of its kind in the English language, now in its fourth edition, and a number of other books and a great many articles, not all of them about aviation.


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