Chapter 6 – Flying Tigers

Flying Tigers

Sometime late in the 1960’s I did some instruction on the 707. The airline was The Flying Tigers. The instruction occurred in San Francisco. The Flying Tigers were a motley group. For example, I went to lunch with several of them and noticed that one of them had a scar on his forehead. I inquired about it. He said one of his fellow pilots hit him on the head with a beer bottle during a recent party.

I was assigned two pilots and two co-pilots to train. Of the two pilots one was having trouble with his landings. It took a little time for me to figure out why. I decided to keep my feet on the rudder pedals during his landings and discovered that just before touchdown he was pushing in some right rudder which upset his landing. Then he told me that on the airplane he had been flying it was required to make the touchdown smooth. He had been flying a 4 engine turbo prop which made the right rudder input necessary to align the airplane straight down the runway.

I got both pilots through their training, but the co-pilots presented a different problem.
The co-pilots were in their late 50’s so it was not practical to give them pilot training. They wouldn’t be around that long. They wanted to keep their jobs. The airline was going to jets – no more props. So it was decided to just give enough training so they could safely land the 707 airplane. I was just getting started with that when I was recalled to Seattle to go to school on the 747.

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