Helicopter Museum in West Chester, PA

It seems that when the springtime comes, not only the still of nature suddenly transforms into chaotic motion of all kinds of living beings, but many important and pressing matters start to pile up in my checklist. And as a result, it is already mid-April, and I am only getting to post the remainder of the photo material shot on New Year’s eve. Not to mention a fairly lengthy (by our traveling standards) trip to Georgia and South Carolina that awaits publication. Will have to do better.

This post is about mine and Alex’s visit to the Helicopter Museum in West Chester, PA. How we came to know about the place—minutes away from West Chester, I had not actually heard about it until then—is by going through a coupon book in search of some not-too-costly attractions.

I cannot say that the display was overly impressive, but for four (or whatever we paid) dollars it was next to free. And since it was a gloomy sunless winter day, doing something allegedly self-educational was not a bad option. There were things, however, that I disliked during our visit: an excessively dominating yellow tungsten lighting; hideous out-of-place Christmas decorations; and bunches of kids, gathered for someone’s birthday, running around the exhibits. I realize that our timing played part in the last two factors, but why not change the damn lights!

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As you can see, the variety of helicopter types and functions is actually quite diverse. Some give the “wow, would be nice to ride that baby for leisure” impression (never mind the stupid smile),

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while others make one wish to never be a wounded soldier at war.

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Well, OK, in some models they actually take the wounded inside.

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It is also fascinating to discover how many different types of propellers, propeller mounts, and steering mechanisms exist.

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A puzzling moment  though is why certain moving parts are uncovered. I understand motorcycles, but when you are tearing along some thousand feet above the ground, would you really want to expose your machine’s crucial components to the outer conditions, whatever they might be?

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Perhaps, certain exhibits were stripped down to bear metal (figuratively speaking) for display purposes; but as for some other ones that looked visually unaltered, I kept wondering what good reasons engineers had in order to opt for the current design. Either way, engineers seem to know their craft much better than the military, who rely heavily on engineers’ work in their daily business. All those heavy machines were built by engineers and were able to fly and maneuver in mid-air; but military folks could not even get the direction marker right: the museum is located in West Chester, yet the arrow is sending us astray.

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Just joking of course.

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