All about the immortal J-3 Piper Cub and L-4 Grasshopper, built by William Piper at Lock Haven, which evolved into the PA-11 Cub Special, PA-18 Super Cub, and the Legend Cub and other lookalikes of today
The Flight in question is the roughly 4,000-mile jaunt from New York to Paris in May 1927 that made Charles Lindbergh the most famous man in the world. Dan Hampton's account is the fifth I have read, and the first to focus on the pilot rather than the man. It's a book for pilots, by a pilot, with relentless attention to the endless, tiny adjustments that must be made to fly an unstable aircraft. (Had Spirit been stable, I doubt it would have reached Europe, for even the disciplined Lindbergh would surely have fallen asleep.) Short of spending forty hours in a simulator, reading these 250 pages is the closest we can get to his ordeal through the two days and a night he spent in the air. It is, therefore, a bit of an astonishment to discover, toward the end, that a thief made off with Lindbergh's logbook soon after he landed at Le Bourget, and that it has was never recovered. So what did I just spend forty hours reading, a work of fiction?
I was surprised and pleased by the enduring success of Taildragger Tales, a collection of five essays I wrote about flying a 1940s Piper Cub almost as old as I was. Now it's been narrated by Kevin Theis, a Chicago actor who among other classics has voiced A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Charlie Wilson's War. Buy it for $5.95 on Amazon or get it free with an Audible subscription. If you already subscribe, download it from Audible. (And if you earlier bought the ebook from Amazon, the audio version is only $1.99.) Blue skies! — Daniel Ford