Podcast - Adam Savage Project

Flying In a U-2 – 8/4/2015

This week, Adam updates us on the status of his desert expedition and regales us with tales of his flight in the U-2, high above California.

Comments (33)

33 thoughts on “Flying In a U-2 – 8/4/2015

  1. Hi Adam! A new season of MythBusters just started airing here in New Zealand, starting with the Simpsons Special! I think the new format could use some refinement but I can definitely see it’s potential, so I’m excited to see it developed and refined. It’s nice seeing more of the build, the problem solving, and the stories being regaled along the way. Keep up the good work!

  2. One thing you never mentioned was coffin corner where the U2 flies

    You go any faster you go supersonic and fall out of the sky

    You go any slower you stall and fall out of the sky

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coffin_corner_(aerodynamics)

    And I am afraid to say that Adam ain’t the first famous person with a camera crew to get in a U2

    James May of topgear fame has had a play

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_May_at_the_Edge_of_Space

    And it was an excellent program and i think it was better then the mythbusters episode

  3. Hey Adam! Not sure how often you frequent /r/mythbusters while the season is airing, but just wanted to say everyone seemed to like the U2 episode. Although most people agree it’s not myth heavy, I don’t think there was a single person on there who wasn’t grinning seeing how happy you were. You teared a few of us up! Glad you had a blast, it was incredibly touching.

  4. Adam, is there any chance to get a talking room with Chris hatfield?

    I cannot get enough of your interactions with him.

  5. I loved the conversation surrounding the scope of the view that Adam got from that altitude – when Will said, “…you saw Northern California…”, it reminded me of my ultra-tangential SR-71/Beale Air Force Base story. In 1985, I had returned to college full-time and was working for Bowling Green State University (Ohio) university computing services in the VAX computer operations area. One of our grad student programmers had been a civilian contractor with a very high security clearance for several years prior to starting his graduate degree program at BGSU. He had been stationed at Beale and was attached to the SR-71 units there at the time (late 70s/early 80s). As he told the story, he was very friendly and familiar with the flight crews and would often go jogging on base in the very early morning hours. One morning, he runs into one of the pilots and they chat for a few minutes when all of a sudden, the pilot says “Well Jack, I’ve got to get going. We’re photographing South America this morning… I’ll tell you all about it at lunch!” Mind = blown!

    My other SR-71/Beale story took place about a year later. Beale is in Riverside,CA and for many years, was adjacent to Riverside International Raceway, which was the primary road course on the NASCAR Grand National/Winston Cup circuit throughout the 1960s, 70s and 80s. In November 1986, I flew out to attend what was, ostensibly, going to be the very last race held at RIR. I was in the pits watching as the crews were working on the cars during practice for qualifying when an SR-71 came flying over. The track announcer came over the PA and jokingly said “Ladies and gentlemen, that was an SR-71 that just flew over and its top speed is fast enough to win the pole on this or any other racetrack in the world!” I was standing near Richard Petty at the time and I heard him respond to this by saying “Yep! But I’d like to see it get slowed down enough to make Turn 9…” (which was a notoriously slow 180 degree turn that came off a long, downhill back straightaway).

  6. Adam I was so excited for you watching the U-2 episode, not a lot regarding the myth was covered. But it was a very informative and beautiful piece of television.

  7. Myth-heavy, shmiff-heavy. Who cares!?!

    This was a lovely, lovely show. It was the epitome of the spirit that I think Mythbusters has engendered in so many of its viewers. It’s a direction that Adam and Jamie could take into a whole ‘nother great series of shows.

    Thank you for sharing that experience. It was a BLAST!

  8. Maybe you are thinking March AFB (OR ARB now) Beale is up north of Sacramento.

    And you are right about the raceway that was near March. Although where it was is not the Moreno Valley mall.

  9. Will! Slightly unrelated, but speaking of posters/premium membership: I got a note to update my card, I did, but have not been billed for another year. I noticed my next invoice date is in the past (7/28/15.) Is there any way to be sure my subscription is renewed? I have yet to see an invoice and I really don’t want to miss out on this poster this year. Thanks!

  10. “Bullet ants have the most painful bite.”
    That’s a Myth that needs Busting.
    Or is that the new answer to “Are there any myths you won’t do?”

  11. Will! My coffee-loving boyfriend would be ever so grateful if you could look up the brand of that freeze-dried Kona coffee (it would save him an early-morning Tim horton’s run next time he visits my tea-only household!).

  12. Right you are! It was March AFB that I was remembering for both anecdotes. I guess that I’ll have to defer to the “It was almost 30 years ago!” defense 🙂

    It is a shame that they tore up Riverside to put in a shopping mall – I’m sure there’s a song in that somewhere 🙂 It was an incredible racing venue that had a helluva lot of history behind it.

  13. I know it is a long shot but is there any way to get a print of Adams’ first poster of the Mecha-Glove? I remembered see it briefly but could never seem to find the link to get it back then. I started really following Tested videos this past spring so I was very happy to be able to get the current one. Thanks for all the great videos and broad range of content.

  14. Always beautiful to see a close friend (tv land, anyway) to live a dream. Glad you got to fly to the edge of the atmosphere and see the curvature of the Earth, Adam.

  15. Hate to say it but you missed like 3 eps as it is broadcasting here in a different order to the usa.

    San Francisco Drift, Indy Special, A-Team Special and the Simpsons special was this week.

  16. Well darn. It’s premiering here, so we’re only getting one episode a week, each Monday. Guess I’ll catch those episodes on the DVD!

  17. Well darn. It’s premiering here, so we’re only getting one episode a week, each Monday. Guess I’ll catch those episodes on the DVD!

    Just an FYI Now that we get netflix in NZ. Mythbusters is finally available in HD(not the current one season though) for the first time. So would be better if you can to watch on netflix rather than picking up the DVD’s provided you have the bandwidth of cause.

  18. I can definitely see the value in watching them in HD on Netflix, and while I do have an unlimited plan, our actual connection is shoddy enough to ward me away from it. I’d rather go for a one-time DVD purchase so that I know that I never have to download them or re-stream them every time I want to watch one. Plus, I like the archival nature of having them on DVD (I’ve done so for all the other seasons!).

  19. Is there any possibility getting the toolbox poster signed Adam? I feel it’s my “once in a lifetime”-chance to get something signed by you, and it would mean a lot.

  20.   I’m pretty sure in the video they said Mach .71 which is slower than commercial jet traffic which normally sit between .78 and .85. Also as a Brit it’d be remiss of me if I didn’t bring up the Concorde for which there was a total of only around 350 qualified Captains, First Officers and Flight Engineers, flew Mach 2 at 60,000ft and no one on board had to wear a pressure suit 😉

  21. I love these pod casts!

    Its amazing how genuinely excited Adam is off camera (well off the Mythbusters) about flying in the U-2. I have been following you guys since the start and I know how much of an enthusiast Adam was about the high altitude and space suits, you can see he is genuinely over the moon he actually got to go in a genuine one.

    The question I was waiting for you to ask… How disappointed he would have been if Jamie went up instead of him? 🙂 I think it would have been just cruel of him if he did that!

  22. Hey guys,

    If you are interested in the U2 and the SR-71, I STRONGLY suggest that you take a look at those two amazing videos.

    The first one is an hour long interview with Richard Graham, a retired SR-71 pilot. He tells a bunch of fascinating cold war stories about his missions and the plane.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CeBu6mRDaro

    The second video is with Richard Graham again but this time he does a full cockpit checkout of the SR-71 (both cockpits). He explains every switches and gauges. Seriously fascinating stuff.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tj9UwKQKE3A

    (also the “Video” and “Link” buttons don’t seem to work for me so you’ll have to copy/paste manually).

  23. will norm adam. not sure adam will read this but on invaulable.com there is a auction this weekend that has a bunch of millitary pilot helmets and maybe one space helmet. thought you may be interested to know for your collection. jeep

  24. Honestly loved the U2 ep, really fascinating stuff. I would love to watch a science show hosted by Adam and Chris, I think they both bring interesting perspectives on things, and could cover some really interesting topics, not just engineering but the interactions between people and machines, people taken to the limits of human endurance not for sport or entertainment, but as part of their jobs. What does it take to be a deep-sea diver, stunt driver, fighter pilot, as well as the machines that go with them. Or even just pure science, what goes on in a level 4 hot lab, and how can we learn stuff we should know but don’t.

    As far as mythbusters goes, I do like the new format, there is some really neat stuff that you guys are able to fit in to the new format. Even if its just cool stuff with a really low “myth” threshold.

  25. I want to add a point to the difficulty of landing the U-2. During the Cold War the U-2 launched and landed from an aircraft carrier. I was surprised that was not stated during the episode. As for the episode I loved it entirely.

  26. I just saw this episode (takes longer in Canada ’cause of the extreme cold) and that was fantastic. Adam, you are one lucky bast**d!

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