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Bisbee
Topic Author
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:16 am

Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 5:16 am

I know Howard Hughes owned T.W.A. for a time, was he ever the Captain of a revenue producing flight?
 
PanAm747
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Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:46 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 6:53 am

I don't recall reading of Howard Hughes actually being a pilot of a flight with passengers...

But I do know that he showed up at Convair's old plant in San Diego and personally test-flew a Convair 880. Traffic was tied up for a while as he zipped around the skies of southern California.

When he finally landed the plane, he didn't say a word to anyone - just got in his car and left. As I recall, he never piloted a plane again.

[Edited 2006-11-30 22:54:17]
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isitsafenow
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RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 7:05 am

Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 1):

..And TWA didn't have the money for them so Hughes Tool bought them and HELD them. Howard was in a battle for control of TWA at that time.
Finally Hughes Tool transferred the planes to Trans World and TWA survived.
TWA was very shaky in 1960-early 61. Thats why they ordered Caravelles
and xceld them. No $$$$$$$$.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
Cody
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Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 12:16 pm

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 11:23 am

Good question and I apologize that I cannot answer it. I do have an interesting tid-bit though. Back when TWA was being folded into American, there was an article published in the New York Times by a former TWA "hostess" who recalled the days when Hughes would board a revenue TWA flight, ask all the paying passengers to leave, fill the seats with movie stars, and take the crew along for a party. I wonder how well that would go over today?
 
CWAFlyer
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Joined: Tue Mar 15, 2005 3:33 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 12:14 pm

Howard flew the Connie's quite a bit. He and Jack Frye set a coast to coast speed record back in an early model Connie that at the time didn't even belong to TWA (it belonged to the military). Howard was not regarded as a very good pilot by those who flew with him. Jack Frye on the other hand was considered as good or better than any line pilot TWA had.
 
mfricke
Posts: 292
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2001 3:04 pm

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 12:32 pm

Not just did Howard Hughes own TWA for a time, he presided over it in aviation's golden era, from WWII up to the jet age. One of the best aviation books I've read was about him and TWA. It's called "Howard Hughes' Airline: An Informal History of TWA" by Robert Serling. The ISBN number is 0-312-39631-7. I would recommend ordering it (I'm sure you can find it at amazon.com). It recalls in detail his many "testing" flights, including how milk and chocolate chip cookies would be served for him in the cockpit, and how he normally never consumed them! I read the book almost nonstop, couldn't put it down, and you probably will too!
ONT - Southern California's Ontario!
 
Bisbee
Topic Author
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:16 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Fri Dec 01, 2006 12:57 pm

Thank you all for helping me, I have always wondered about that since I was a little boy, very much appreciated, Bryan.
 
N1120A
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RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sat Dec 02, 2006 2:26 am

Quoting CWAFlyer (Reply 4):
He and Jack Frye set a coast to coast speed record back in an early model Connie that at the time didn't even belong to TWA (it belonged to the military).

He also set a coast to coast record in a TWA 707, doing SFO-BWI

Quoting CWAFlyer (Reply 4):
Howard was not regarded as a very good pilot by those who flew with him.

Hughes was an excellent test pilot, he just took a lot of risks.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
tonyban
Posts: 262
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 4:55 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sat Dec 02, 2006 9:26 am

Where is the Spruce Goose ?
 
PanAm747
Posts: 4711
Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:46 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sat Dec 02, 2006 9:33 am

http://www.sprucegoose.org/aircraft_artifacts/exhibits.html

Quote:
The Museum is located at 500 NE Captain Michael King Smith Way, McMinnville, Oregon 97128

I was lucky enough to see this beauty several times in Long Beach.  eyepopping 
Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
 
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United_fan
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RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sat Dec 02, 2006 10:07 am

I remember reading a story about Howard Hughes test-flying a 707,he put the flaps out at too high a speed and one ripped off and landed on a car.
"Suspicion is a matter of opinion"
 
twal1011727
Posts: 449
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2006 5:36 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sun Dec 03, 2006 2:12 am

Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 2):
TWA was very shaky in 1960-early 61

Oh yeah they were.....My dad received a furlough notice in the mail the same day he got a call to disregard it.
My mom was 4 months pregnant with me at the time (They also had 3 daughters too.)

Good thing that never came to fruition..Dad stayed w/TWA until retiring in 1987.

KD
 
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northstardc4m
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RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Sun Dec 03, 2006 1:29 pm

Quoting United_fan (Reply 10):
I remember reading a story about Howard Hughes test-flying a 707,he put the flaps out at too high a speed and one ripped off and landed on a car.

the Dash 80 in fact... and he picked the worst possible car... belonged to an FAA inspector.

Of course, Howard Hughes made a quick getaway and left the Boeing demo pilot to shoulder the blame...

Everything i hear and read about the man makes me realise he was probably more than a little insane, and probably not fit to be a pilot.
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
 
PanAm747
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Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:46 am

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Mon Dec 04, 2006 2:17 am

I found the quote!! From Jon Proctor's fantastic series, "Great Airliners: Volume One - Convair 880 & 990":

Quote:


Many credit Howard Hughes with the failure of Convair to attract 880 customers. His delaying tactics certainly cost the manufacturer precious time...then his refusal to accept TWA's airplanes ran up individual airframe costs tremendously.

An example came in 1959 when Hughes decided to test fly the 880 prototype. Convair had ship one ready and a company limousine waiting at Lindbergh Field terminal. After a long delay, Lockheed's L188 Electra prototype landed, and its crew, ignoring taxi instructions, pulled behind the 880 and parked. Hughes, who had an Electra on order at the time and was negotiating for more, followed several men down the airstairs, bearded and looking shabby with a rope for a belt and no socks. He walked over to N801TW, met with chief pilot Don Germeraard, and boarded the 880 without delay.

It was reported that Hughes was in the right-hand seat. After doing some maneuvers over the Pacific, the 880 performed several touch-and-go landings, thoroughly disrupting SAN traffic for over two hours. After landing, the plane was returned, Hughes boarded the L188, and without a word, took off.
Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
 
RogerThat
Posts: 506
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2003 12:13 pm

RE: Did Howard Hughes Ever Fly A T.W.A. Revenue Flight

Mon Dec 04, 2006 10:20 am

Howard Hughes was a strange duck......no news flash that. In the last few months, I've read 2 books about Hughes. I don't recall any mention of him crewing a TWA aircraft whilst in revenue service.

A few interesting factiods:

1. HH hit and killed a man with his car in 1930s Los Angeles. The victim was crossing the street at night. HH never prosecuted.

2. One passenger killed and one seriously injured when the Sikorsky amphibian he was piloting crashed while landing on lake Mead.

3. The value of his TWA stock increased signifcantly after he lost control.

If you have an interest in wierdness, study Howard Hughes.

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