Ladies and Gentlemen: In this update: New shelter serves as paint booth; The Eagle’s tailcone gets a face lift, and work on an iOS app begins.
The team has been waiting for this beautuful weather as they logged in today: Keith Zanghi, Ed Shadle, Von Armstrong, Sean Rondestvedt, Brandyn Bayes, Larry Martinson, Rich Pengelley, John Winchester and Omar Chramosta. Visiting today was Correen Orton, a cousin of Elaine Shadle.
Interstate Batteries’ Kirk White stopped by to deliver a new Optima battery that is a much smaller package than our regular Optima batteries. This will be used for the deployment of the parachute system. The photo below shows Ed placing the battery into position to do an intial check. The North American Eagle™ uses Interstate Batteries exclusively to deliver power for internal electrical systems, the American Valley Aviation M32-60B start cart, the hydraulics for the race car transporters, and all of the Tropos Area Broadband network antennas. They are sealed and operate in the most harsh enviroments, and in any attitude including sideways and upside down!
Keith brought in a surprise package today as he unloaded a new canopy shelter, complete with many parts and a sheet of instructions that were pretty much ignored. Up it went without too many hitches and it was ready to serve as a paint booth for the tailcone. Word has it that if Keith doesn’t use it for hay storage at his ranch, it will become our new mess tent!
Over the years the high vibration and the heat generated from the afterburner has taken its toll. It took several hours of scraping, sanding, and wipe down preparation to make the old paint layers and flakes go away. A shiny bare metal surface was a result, and the tailcone was ready for a new look. It was a very difficult and tiring job. Everyone was pretty much worn out by the end of the day. Sean Rondestvedt, team firefighter and jet mechanic, commented that “this was harder then rescuing woman from burning buildings!” With all that said, it was good preparation for working in the hot weather and for over extending ourselves when we hit the desert lake beds later this year. The new paint job debut will be at the 25th Annual NHRA O’Reily Auto Parts Northwest Nationals drag races at Pacific Raceways later this month.
Clay Davis, a friend and co-worker of Keith, came out to the hangar to take over the painting operation and put his expertise to work inside the paint booth. Keith blended up the exacting formulas of thinners, primers, hardeners and paint while Clay manned the spray gun. Next weekend will see the newly painted tailcone reattached. Between now and then a whole new set of sponsor decals are being made at Signs By Tomorrow Houston South by our good friends Lisa and Thor Holder.
Brandyn showed up with several new announcements concerning the website and mobile apps. Development of a new iOS app for both iPhone and iPad has now begun. Watch for the iOS app to be released in about two weeks. Brandyn also came by to tell us that a new Team Page is now available online, and that the new Gear Store should be available in the coming weeks. A new update for the NAE™ Android App is now available, with Android 4.1 Support, new High Resolution icons, and several bug fixes.
Screen shots for the new iPhone and iPad apps
New Lenovo Video
Lenovo recently released a new video featuring the North American Eagle™. The NAE™ scenes were edited by Steve Wallace. Team NAE™ uses Lenovo ThinkStations and ThinkPad for engineering and for developing the website you are looking at now. Click on the photo below and watch this exciting video.
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All photos on the home page by Eric Wittler of ChasingClouds.net Thanks Eric!