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Igor Sikorsky: The Russian Years

Igor Sikorsky: The Russian Years

Ref: 4651

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{detailed description}Edited by Carl J. Bobrow and Von Hardesty; translated and adapted by Von Hardesty; epilogue by Sergei Sikorsky.
Much has been written about early aviation, and many are familiar with Igor Sikorsky's American-made seaplanes and helicopters. During the Golden Age of Flight, Sikorsky was a close friend of Charles Lindbergh and a pioneer aviation industrialist. He had a profound and enduring impact on the development of American aviation. Less familiar to us, however, are Sikorsky's Russian years, beginning in Kiev in 1910, when as a young inventor he designed his first airplane. For the next decade, spanning the turbulent years of World War I and the Russian Revolution, Sikorsky designed a series of aircraft. By the time he emigrated to the West in 1918, he had established himself as one of Europe's preeminent aircraft designers.
K.N. Finne's memoir, available for the first time in English translation, provides the most comprehensive and authoritative documentation to date of this obscure period. Drawings, maps, original photographs, appendices, and an epilogue by Igor Sikorsky's son Sergei bring to light significant information about the development of the world's first heavy bomber—the Il'ya Muromets.
This behemoth, with its enclosed cockpit and heated cabins, could stay aloft for hours, cruising at sixty-five miles per hour with as many as sixteen passengers. On the eve of World War I, the Il'ya Muromets made an epic sixteen-hundred-mile round-trip flight from St. Petersburg (now Leningrad) to Kiev. During the war, the Russians manufactured more than seventy of these multi-engined aircraft and deployed them in a special squadron at the front for bombing and reconnaissance missions.
Finne, a friend and admirer of Sikorsky's prior to the Russian Revolution, wrote this firsthand account in 1930 from exile in Yugoslavia. As a flight surgeon with the squadron of Flying Ships in the Imperial Russian Air Force, Finne had been in a unique position
to record Sikorsky's major aeronautical achievements. Although neither historian nor professional writer, Finne has produced a compelling record. This adapted English-language edition has not only made that record available to English-speaking aerohistorians, military historians, flying enthusiasts, and general readers, but has also filled an important gap in our knowledge of aviation history.
{Author / Publisher / Date}by K. N. Finne; edited by Carl J. Bobrow and Von Hardesty; translated and adapted by Von Hardesty
published by Airlife 1987 1st UK edn. 223pp profusely illustrated, index, appendix, bibliography. 18x26
{condition}minor proof reader's annotation in margins, otherwise good in slightly worn and faded d/j.
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