FBI Hindenburg Report

Long time no see!

Got back from my vacation to find that my FOIA request for the Hindenburg File had been approved. In all, 408 pages were released. I'm not sure how different it is from the redacted report available from the FBI Vault, but I'll be transcribing the entire report as best I can.

I need to check Bureau guidelines to be sure, but I think I can provide a copy of the  transcript here when it is finished. In addition, you can contact me at ' for further information.

£427.00, the Imperial Airship Scheme, and His Majesty's Airship R-100

HMA R-100 was one half of the Imperial Airship Scheme. The brainchild of Christopher Thomson, the British Minister of Air, the Scheme, was a farsighted plan to connect the far flung colonies of the “empire on which the sun never set”, with regular, reliable, and expedient airship service. The first ship, R-100, the lesser known cousin of the infamous R-101, was chosen to fly a transatlantic route to Canada.
                The ship was the engineering brainchild of Barnes Wallis (later famous for WWII’s ‘bouncing bomb’ and his various designs for a supersonic airliner) and Nevil S. Norway (later acclaimed as the successful author Nevil Shute). The design and construction of R-100 represented a leap in airship design, going so far as to influence both the structure and passenger accommodations of Germany’s A.S. Hindenburg.                In fact, the streamlined, elliptically shaped envelopes of both the R-100 and the R-101 held such an technological advantage over the earlier Zeppelins…

Goodyear and the ZRCV Airship

The ZRS-class USS Akron and USS Macon, both fabricated by Goodyear Aircraft Co. in Akron, served as part of a massive experiment. Their purpose as proof of concept models for a skeptic Navy was masked by the vast complexity and performance of the two ships.

The ZRS designation stood for 'Lighter Than Air (The 'Z' likely being an homage to Zeppelin) Rigid Scout'. The ship's F9C Sparrowhawk fighters were designed to serve as both protective 'parasite' fighters, dispatched to eliminate threats to the larger mothership, as well as reconnaissance vehicles, their range vastly expanded by the ultra-long distance capabilities of the airship.

The next generation airship would represent a great step in naval aviation. The ZRCV designation belied their true role, CV was the navy abbreviation for Carrier Vehicle, as flying aircraft carriers.

A brief note on "Airship of the Month"

To facilitate a complete story of any airship that I feature I will no longer be using the label "Airship of the Month". Instead, I'll have a "Featured Airship" which allows me to take as long as I need on a particular airship E.G. with so much information on the Hindenburg It'd take more than one month to complete a full collection on it.)

This will go into effect on April 1st with the Shenandoah as was originally planned for March.

In the meantime, to make this post presentable, here are two of my all-time favorite airship photographs.

The Hindenburg floats towards disaster at Lakehurst. Two hours later the ship would become one of the most famous air disasters of the 20th Century.
The R-101 lit up inside her Cardington hangar.

March Airship of the Month: ZR-1 Shenandoah

With this headline, on the morning of September 3rd, 1925, the Baltimore American announced the crash of the first American rigid airship. The ZR-1 Shenandoah (originally designated "Fleet Airship No. 1" represented the start of America's unfortunate association with rigid airships. 
Assembled at the Lakehurst Naval Air Station the then FA-1 was copied from a wartime German Zeppelin. 
The Shenandoah garnered several firsts during her short career including the first transcontinental airship flight, the first airship to launch aircraft, the first airship to moor to a ship (the U.S.S. Patoka, more about that ship later) and, of course, the first American built airship.

The ZR-1 takes shape in the same hangar that would later shelter the Hindenburg. Parts for the airship were fabricated in Philadelphia then shipped to Lakehurst for final assembly.
 The Shenandoah is christened after two years of construction
The Shenandoah shares Lakehurst Hangar …

Hindenburg engine gondola [failure]

Just woke up this morning to the unpleasant surprise that my model of the engine gondolas for the Hindenburg appear to have vanished from my computer... I look forward to being able to post photos as soon as I rebuild the model.

The "A.M. Report"

EDIT: I'm posting this a day late due to a couple issues with it.

I'm considering an "AirshipModeler Report" to summarize the goings on of AirshipModeler over the past week or month as the amount of activity dictates.

The A.M. Report ~ Monday, January 21st.

Today I am presenting a special version of the first ever A.M. Report.

January 4th, 2013

On January 4th the first thread since AirshipModeler was attacked by malware was posted by "Dirigible_Nut". This thread can be found here:!!

January 7th, 2013

"Hlostoops" (me) posted a thread about the upcoming test flight of "Aeroscraft". An ensuing discussion also provided insight into the technical definition of a rigid airship.!

January 15th, 2013

Dirigible_Nut" continued work on his model of the R-34:…