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Showing posts from November 29, 2016

Oh Deer! Another Hunting Season Story: Skinning a Deer in Missile Test Bay

Sometimes the best tool for a job is a tool that is not yours.So you borrow it.That’s why the first time I skinned a deer was in a U.S. Air Force missile test bay on Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah.
Four miles north of the main area of the base was the missile test facility on Hill.We had equipment to shake, bake, heat, freeze, and simulate high altitude.We stressed missile engines (not warheads) then test fired the engine bolted to racks.The smaller missiles, like the Sidewinder, we fired right on post.When we fired one of the three engines of the three-stage Minuteman missile, we fired on a range on the west side of the Great Sale Lake.
To shake, we called it vibration test, the missile engines we used a 300,000-watt electro magnet—essentially a really big speaker driver.Bolt an engine to this vibration machine and it could be shaken back and forth, up and down, left to right fast or slow, soft or hard, smoothly or with jerks.Then we fired the missile on a test pad to see if the…