This is the completely revised tragic story of Bell Aircraft Corporation Chief Test Pilot Jean ‘Skip’ Ziegler and his pioneering flights over the Hump and on the X-1A, X-5 and X-2. No less remarkable than the X-planes he tested,
Ziegler had served with the Air Transport Command during World War II, and flew one of the ten transports which evacuated 10,000 persons from Burma in a single month. The lean, blond and amiable Ziegler, described by associates as “a man without nerves and a real flier,” made the first flight of the X-5 and, in July 1951, the first flight when the small pot-bellied aircraft moved its wings and their sweep angle changed from a 24° position to 20°, making it the first aircraft to change its wing sweep in flight.
Ziegler also made the first flight of the X-2 and died in its explosion, less than two years after the X-5’s history-making flight.
Exclusive pictures and data.
* The Early Years
* The X-5 Program
* Testing the X-1A
* The Ill-fated X-2