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Comet! The World's First Jet Airliner Hardcover – February 19, 2014

4.3 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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About the Author

Graham M. Simonsis an author and military historian who specialises in aviation of World War II.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Pen and Sword (February 19, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1781592799
  • ISBN-13: 978-1781592793
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.9 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,234,138 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The stunning advent of this aircraft and the subsequent sequential disasters in the first half of the 1950's are a landmark in my memories of youth. I bought this book to satisfy my curiosity about the accuracy of my recollections of the Comet "story" and what might lie behind it. It did that handsomely and more.

It confirmed that the string of disasters began with some instances of pilot error, for which the public generally accepted the plane was blameless, but quite rapidly reached a crescendo with at least two monstrous structural failures and losses of all on board. The reasons for these were quite rapidly determined, but the public's trust, at least in the outer reaches of the Empire in which I lived, was pretty thoroughly blown. By the time the aircraft had technically "got back on its feet" with the defects remedied sufficient time had passed that its main American rival, the Boeing 707, was
going into service. Benefitting from the knowledge gained from the Comet troubles, which was generously shared around, and buoyed by its
superior size, commercial viability and the Comet's damaged reputation the 707 swept the floor as far as sales went, as did the similar and closely contemporary Douglas DC8. The rejigged Comet was relegated to a minor role in jet passenger transport and lasted only a few further years in main line service with BOAC and BEA.

It was surprising to learn that almost 50 more of the redesigned machines were built. After a few years service on scheduled routes most ended up with minor airlines and charter services and were not totally removed from service until quite late in the 1970's.
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Format: Hardcover
I assumed that Kev Darling's book on the subject published in 2005 was the definitive book on this aircraft but this new volume blows all others away. The book is lavishly illustrated but still packs plenty of details that will satisfy aviation enthusiasts. There are many new images from De Havilland's archives here that I have never seen published before. Every aspect of this aircraft is covered including development, the various models as well as the Nimrod variant. Although a but pricey at $40, it is well worth it for anyone who wants a definitive history of this fine aircraft.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have to mention I am biased... my father worked for De Havilland engines at the time the Ghost and Comet were produced at Leavesden and Hatfield respectively. I have flown in a BEA Comet 4B (and a DH Dove and Heron) and my memory is of an amazing take off....felt like 45 degrees... and you could balance a coin on the table, so little was the vibration. The author has researched this topic well and produced an accurate and interesting read. The De Havilland achievement is all the more impressive when you consider they produced both the engines and the airframe. The first USA jet to fly used a De Haviland engine and on the topic of accidents and incidents, Boeing 707's used to drop their engines (one fell in a garden near Heathrow), DC10's would lose hatches in flight and the latest Boeing Dreamliner has had its fair share of incidents with batteries. No company is exempt from issues of one magnitude or another!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I saw some of these beautiful airliners flying around in the 1960's, but never knew anything about them. This book gives the history of this very interesting aircraft that was just too far ahead of it's time. Tells of it's development, the problems it had and the solution from beginning to end. Includes both military and civilian operators. Gives technical descriptions of aircraft systems and backs a lot of it up with pictures. I would give this 6 or 7 stars if it was possible.
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