Spraying Mantis is a fantastic name for a crop duster.



PROPHETS OF WING LOAD Not long ago, a well-known engineer declared flatly that it would be impossible to get airplanes above a 40-pound wing loading. By that he meant we could never get off the ground if the weight of the airplane and its load exceeded 40 pounds for every square foot of wing area. Actually that figure was topped some time ago, but conservatives then said we’d never get above 80 pounds.

Wing Motors to Improve AUTOGYRO (Jan, 1930)

Wing Motors to Improve AUTOGYRO

RECENT successes of Juan de la Cierva’s Autogyro airplane have directed the attention of aeronautical engineers to the possibilities of improving this type of machine into tomorrow’s perfect airplane. The aerodynamics of the autogyro are considerably more complicated than is the case with the conventional type of plane, but various features of its design, such as its ability to descend almost vertically, are most practical.

The Air Police Patrol (Feb, 1936) (Feb, 1936)

This would make for some pretty awesome car chases.

The Air Police Patrol


THE automobile, as a quick get-away instrument in crime, has assumed vast proportions during the past decade. Notorious gangsters and their henchmen are always using high-powered automobiles and, unfortunately, they are often able to outwit local police and state troopers after the crime has been engineered.

Airplane to Run on hydrogen from Air (Dec, 1929)

Airplane to Run on hydrogen from Air

Flying at a height of 25 to 30 miles, an airplane being planned by Professor Rondine, of the Department of Aeronautics at Leningrad University, Russia, is to take the hydrogen which exists at these altitudes and use it for fuel! Professor Rondine proposes to equip his plane with a compressor to catch the thin hydrogen laden air and condense it to a point where it becomes a good fuel.



World’s first Propeller-Turbine Airliner to fly for TRANS-CANADA* and CAPITAL AIRLINES

A new flying experience is coming to America soon. Two famous airlines—Trans-Canada and Capital — are adding Vickers Viscounts to their fleets for service in the United States and Canada.

Already flying on 40 major world air routes, the Vickers Viscount has won the overwhelming preference of passengers everywhere. American air travelers who have flown in the Viscount describe the experience as wonderfully different, more enjoyable than any flight they’ve ever known.

Behind the Viscount stands the great name of the Vickers Group—internationally famous as makers of aircraft, ships, industrial machinery, and precision equipment.


The DC-8, now in flight, will carry you to new heights of luxurious air travel (Sep, 1958)

The DC-8, now in flight, will carry you to new heights of luxurious air travel

DC-8 introduces you to Her Serene Highness – the Stratosphere Beneath the wings of the DC-8, the world falls swiftly below. The sky turns from blue to purple, and as you reach new heights, there conies over you a feeling of serenity never known to you before.

“Indestructible” Plane Built (Dec, 1937)

“Indestructible” Plane Built

FEATURING construction that makes it practically indestructible by machine gun fire from other aircraft, a “convoy fighter” airplane has been developed by the Seversky Aircraft Corp., of Farmingdale, L. I. The all-metal construction is such that the stresses of flight are spread over the entire wing and no single beam carries a critical load. The wings can be literally riddled with bullets and the plane can still maintain flight.

The new plane is powered by an 1100-horsepower, twin-row radial engine and is said to be capable of traveling 300 m.p.h. Armament consists of five machine guns and wing racks for carrying 300 pounds of demolition bombs.

The plane is believed to be the most versatile ever constructed for military use. It can be used as a light bomber, an observation plane, a pursuit plane, an attack plane, or as an advanced trainer.

Airplane and Automobile in One (Dec, 1930)

Airplane and Automobile in One
THERE is no telling what aviation may come to. In the future we may see such contraptions as shown above flying about.

NOW SEE THIS! (Nov, 1959)


ROLL this strikingly unusual Swiss-made jeweled-lever wristwatch on any standard scale map and you can measure the distance in miles or kilometers. As you roll the watch along the map’s highway, the mileage is recorded and seen through an aperture on the face of the dial. The watch is designed for the world traveler, sportsmen or even for the week-end driver who likes to keep track of the distance he travels. Bauble is scheduled for export to the United States sometime within the next year.

Nautilus May Meet Zeppelin at Pole (Aug, 1931) (Aug, 1931)

Nautilus May Meet Zeppelin at Pole
Details of the methods by which the Graf Zeppelin and the Nautilus, Sir Hubert Wilkins’ polar submarine, hope to complete at the North Pole the most amazing rendezvous in all history, are pictured in the above drawing. The map shows the route these craft will follow. The Nautilus, described in detail in last month’s issue of Modern Mechanics and Inventions, is now on its way to the North Pole.