|Book Review 7
Paper Airplane Pilot
I really like this book, but I am having trouble with this review. There are so many things right about
this book, the things that are wrong just jump out at me.
So let's review the things the book does well first.
- There is an excellent section on how airplanes work, including control surfaces and power plants.
Comprehensive illustrations also.
- Great information section on each plane. The planes are organized chronologically, and the author
uses clever icons to illustrate each plane's capabilities. There is some good information about the planes
as well. There is extensive use of period photes in this section and I must say they they are beautifully
done and arranged throughout.
- The statistics and information section is another well engineered and executed section. Comparing all
24 aircraft by size, production and more. Well Done!
- A small section on the old balsa planes. A very pleasant trip down memory lane, I wish it could have
Now for the things that disappointed me.
- The models rip out of the book, creating over 1/4" gap in the book. You could simple punch out the
parts, but then you would be left with 30 or so pages with holes in them in the book.
- The instructions to make the planes are minimal. This is NOT an easy beginner book. But I
recommend that anyone of any skill level to make this planes - your will increase your skills!
- Some of the plane parts are mislabeled, and there are some parts mis-designed. Extremely unfortunate
for such a professionally produced book.
- The designs have perforated edges, and sometimes the colors and perforations don't line up. So you
have the be careful when you score the lines as they will be off center.
- The books talks about photocopying the designs to practice making them. A good idea, but with some
of the black colored planes, you lose the line detail. You may want to punch out the parts first and then
If this was my book, this is how I would fix it.
1 - Correct the errors in the designs! With so few instructions, these are a needless distraction and
2 - Take the designs out of the book. Put them in a separate booklet, along with a black and white
(non-perforated) copy of each plane. This will make photocopying easier, and you can make as many
planes as you wish. You will be able to practice as much as you like making them and experimenting
with the ballest need for each plane to fly. Then you could make the colored copy, and this would
make a very nice display model.
3 - Increasing the size of the book and making it a hardcover would truly make this a great coffee table
book, and keep it in view, which it deserves.
These three points are why I am ranking this book a 7 out of 10. I still enjoy this book and I hope the
future printings can contain the corrections at least. I recommend this book to everyone, but with the
warning that the planes are difficult. The are rewarding and worthwhile just to increase your paper
plane making skills. I know they helped me!