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on 22 June 2012
I admire Tony Buttler's books, but must admit to finding this one a bit of a disappointment. As TB acknowledges, much of the British content is well covered in other books (Barrie Hygate, British Experimental Jet Aircraft and Barry Jones British Experimental Turbojet Aircraft). The French examples , presumably written by TB's co-author, lack the technical detail and comprehensiveness of the British section and display (to my mind) a touch of French chauvanism. To picture the Mirage IV with the description "perhaps the most successful of European cold war strategic bombers" is a waste of space (as is the advert for the Air and Space Museum at Le Bourget) and is a very debatable description. Strategic only because of its nuclear weapons load, and certainly not because of its unrefuelled operational radius of 700 miles.
TB also rightly says that the choice of X planes is necessarily subjective, but I was disappointed not to find the Dornier Do 31 included, as it was a significant experimental VTOL transport.

The book also shows some signs of its troubled and prolonged gestation - the inclusion of the originally proposed dust jacket illustration as the title page is a bit bizarre!
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on 10 February 2013
Rather complete coverage, even if the "X planes" title is a little misleading, as some prototypes for cancelled operational aircraft are included. A more complete coverage of the national policies under which these fascinating aircraft has been built would have been welcome, the three pages introduction being a bit short in this way.
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on 1 December 2013
Having spent my early teens in the 50's I was really interested in the X-planes especially the French aircraft as so little is written about them. Really recommend this book to the aeroplane buff.
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on 8 June 2012
Excellent details and illustrations of the - in some cases - obscure aircraft covered from Britain, France, Germany, Switzerland and Sweden but sadly nothing on the postWW2 Spanish programme (possibly due to the Nazi connections). This book does not simply duplicate Tony Buttler's previous prototype books, but rather expands upon them and the stories of the French developments are a revelation due to their sad neglect in the English language.
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on 3 August 2012
This is a long awaited excellent production covering a wide range of experimental aircraft from several European countries, particularly France and the UK. I thought my knowledge was pretty good, but included were a few types I had not heard of before.
Highly recommended.
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on 14 September 2012
Another excellent book from Tony Buttler, this time with a French co-author. Particularly interesting to a British reader are the French aircraft chapters, presumably written by Jean-Louis Delezenne. In a critical read I found very few errors but it was surprising to find that M.Delezenne thinks that the Hawker P.1127 "was powered by a single turbojet augmented by four large louvred lift fans"!! It was, of course, powered by a single turbofan exhausting through four swivelling nozzles with turning vanes. This is so well known that it makes me doubt the accuracy of his descriptions of other aircraft. Although the British aircraft have been covered in other books Tony Buttler has found new material. Also I know that Mr Buttler's research is always thorough and involves finding original documents. This is a very good book beautifully produced by Hikoki and I am pleased to have it on my shelves.
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on 23 July 2012
An interesting addition, but I feel it could have been a lot more useful with GOOD 3-views of ALL aircraft.
I also really fail to see the point of a handful of (readily available) cutaways other than a quick and easy way of filling pages.
Overall somewhat disappointing considering the wait.
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on 21 August 2014
This book was a real eye opener for me.Lots of new information about the part played by the British and Europeans country's aircraft designers.
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