The Flying Fortress

Fighter plane motorcycle sidecar

Posted in DIY by flyingfortress on January 2, 2010

Some guy bolted part of a fighter plane fuselage to a WWII-era or -replica motorcycle. It is awesome. That is all.


Rebuilding a 1938 Novachord keyboard

Posted in DIY by flyingfortress on November 23, 2009

Phil Ciricco recently documented his restoration/rebuilding of a 1938 Novachord. The novachord is an early, polyphonic keyboard made by the same company that made its more famous cousin, the Hammond Organ. From his description, it was a long, difficult project, but you can hear how well it turned out from the audio samples at the bottom of the page. It makes an incredible range of sounds, some very warm, some rather dark, and others reminiscent of the soundtracks from early video games. (via).

Here is an example of what it sounds like,  overlaid onto footage of the 1939-1940 World’s Fair, where it was introduced.

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Dieselpunk sightings: Arisia SF Con 2009

Posted in Aesthetics, community, DIY by flyingfortress on October 21, 2009

*Update: Improbcat is the photographer, not the person pictured below. Sorry for the confusion.

I just happened to stumble upon Flickr user Improbcat‘s great dieselpunk outfit from this year’s Arisia convention and had to share it:

Improbcat at Arisia 2009

Improbcat at Arisia 2009

The hat, tie, headphones, and armband are excellent touches.

The contrasts are easy to see next to the steampunk costumes that are in other pictures from that set. While the crew of Steam Trek looks quite good in tassles, gold trim, and other such extravagances, the military look in dieselpunk style takes on cleaner lines, simpler uniforms, and modern neckties. This outfit cuts a very distinct 40s-era airforce or navy look with a few well-chosen accessories. It looks great as it is, but if someone else wants to try a variation on the theme: add medals, some more early electronic equipment, try a shirt with buttoned breast pockets, chevrons and other military insignia, boots, map cases and period backpacks, etc.

Improbcat: if you see this post, we’d love to see a few closeups of that armband, the equipment you have on your tie, and are those straps for a backpack? Let us know if you have any detail pictures in the comments.

The state of dieselpunk DIY

Posted in DIY by flyingfortress on August 24, 2009


To be generous, the dieselpunk DIY scene is, well, nascent.

Compared to the steampunk scene, the goths, etc., we haven’t got a whole lot. What we do have, however, is pretty high-quality. I’ve collected everything I’ve found below in hopes of inspiring the makers, modders, and crafters among us.