Dragon DRW51021 Bell X-1 "Sonic Breaker" X-Plane Dual Aircraft Set - "Glamorous Glennis", Muroc Army Air Field, CA (Edwards AFB), October 14th, 1947 [2-Pack] (1:144 Scale)
"Obsolete weapons do not deter."
- British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
The X-1, built by Bell, was the first of the highly secretive American 'X-planes' that tested out new technologies. Indeed, the X-1 was the very first aircraft to break the sound barrier in level flight. Development started in 1945, and it was inspired by the shape of a Browning .50-cal machine gun round that was known to be stable in supersonic flight. Essentially, the Bell X-1 was a bullet with wings, propelled by a four-chamber rocket engine. The first supersonic test flight occurred on October 14, 1947 with Captain Chuck Yeager at the controls, and he achieved a speed of Mach 1.06 (1,299km/h). This ground- and sound-breaking aircraft is now on display at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C. The original X-1 was developed into several other variants in order to test other aspects of supersonic flight, and these included the X-1A, X-1B, X-1C, X-1D and X-1E. The final flight of a Bell X-1 took place in 1958, but this important experimental aircraft contributed greatly to American knowledge of supersonic flight.
Dragon is offering a fine 1/144 scale model of the Bell X-1 as part of its aircraft collection. In fact, the new set features two complete X-1 aircraft models. The first is a standard replica of this supersonic craft, while the second has a transparent fuselage that shows off the 'innards' of the unique X-1. Both fully built-up and finely painted models are masterfully recreated in miniature. They also come with a sleek display stand made of metal that allows both models to be displayed 'flying' together. This is an impressive set, and with two models and the stand included, it offers unbeatable value! Special Order!
Wingspan: 2 inches
Length: 2-1/2 inches
Release Date: May 2011
Historical Account "Glamorous Glennis" - On October 14th, 1947, just under a month after the United States Air Force had been created as a separate service, the tests culminated in the first manned supersonic flight, piloted by Air Force Captain Charles "Chuck" Yeager in aircraft #46-062, which he had christened Glamorous Glennis after his wife. The rocket-powered aircraft was launched from the bomb bay of a specially modified B-29 and glided to a landing on a runway. XS-1 flight number 50 is the first one where the X-1 recorded supersonic flight, at Mach 1.06 (361 m/s, 1,299 km/h, 807.2 mph) peak speed.
As a result of the X-1's initial supersonic flight, the National Aeronautics Association voted its 1948 Collier Trophy to be shared by the three main participants in the program. Honored at the White House by President Harry S. Truman were Larry Bell for Bell Aircraft, Captain Yeager for piloting the flights, and John Stack for the NACA contributions.
On January 5th, 1949, Yeager used Aircraft #46-062 to carry out the only conventional (runway) take off performed during the X-1 program, reaching 23,000 ft (7,000 m) in 90 seconds.