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Methusaloon: This was the second balloon I ever bought. It is a mythical ‘Barn Find’. That is, someone bought it, flew it 10 times then parked it in a barn. I found it 15 years later. It is Ageless, Old but New and Therefore ‘Methusaloon’.
The I.C. Golden Lager balloon. I became the pilot for Pittsburgh Brewing on short notice. I was probably not really qualified at the time plus my lack of stereoscopic vision makes me technically ‘vision impaired’ due to a lack of depth perception. I never mentioned that to them.
As soon as I started working for the Brewery it was obvious that they needed a new balloon. I lobbied for two years to get a ‘Special Shape’. This is the Beer Can at the factory.
Debut inside the Old Three Rivers Stadium.
I also lobbied for cold air balloons to increase our presence. I was not involved in the final order so they were much bigger than I intended. I had to put up these pigs on roofs all over Pittsburgh .
First inflation of the Queen of Jiffy Pop. This was my effort to make an entry level hot air balloon kit. It was metalized paper with a nylon scrim. Good fabric but hard to work with.
The Queen. While it could satisfy the design goal of 100 hours it could not be set up and taken down 100 times so it was back to the drawing board.
And this is how it is to this day up in the barn.
A torus as a cabin mock-up for a proposed high altitude balloon.
Inside the Torus. This was unreinforced paper. Actually, the paper that Wrigleys uses as gum wrapper.
Donut shaped balloon.
Parkvale was one of many balloons for which I was a guest pilot. They included Giant Eagle and the 84 Lumber balloon.
This is a mock up of an inflatable truss I developed for the US Navy through the SBIR (Small Business Innovative Research) (aka inflatable battleships).