September 4th, 5th, and 6th will see the return of Cockpit-Fest USA 2015, the 4th annual gathering of aircraft cockpits, simulators & enthusiasts all on display at the Cold War Air Museum in Lancaster, TX. (South side of Dallas)
So who are the people who participate and attend this event? They are both aviation enthusiasts and collectors who bring their cockpits by truck via round trips of up to 3,000 miles. They have made projects of both restoring these pieces of heritage and also scratch building replicas at home. Cockpit-Fest gives them the chance to show the cockpits off to the public and to meet with others who share their passion which includes aircraft, electronic interfacing, and software development.
Cockpiteers often rescue neglected cockpits from being scrapped. Gutted and damaged, the cockpits are often beyond many museums financial ability to restore them. Some people want a particular type of aircraft cockpit and when they cannot find one they painstakingly build a full sized replica from scratch!
The simulators use a variety of software platforms including FSX, Prepar3D, X-Plane, and Falcon. They include real cockpits interfaced as sims, industrial sims that are restored, scratch built sims, and custom made mobile-sims that are used for LAN meets. One quickly realizes that this group of people have an amazing array of skill sets. It is common to see a simulator owner suddenly switch between tasks such as popping aircraft rivets to writing software script.
While the Newark museum continues to host the outstanding 15 year annual Cockpit-Fest in England, enthusiasts still attend Cockpit-Fest USA from as far as Canada, Hawaii, Poland, England, Alaska, South Africa, and Australia.
Saturday, Sept 5th, Cockpit-Fest USA will take place during the annual Commemorative Air Force "Warbirds on Parade" and carshow event which features WWII warbirds. WWII Aircraft rides can be purchased and a CAF hangar lunch will be served. Saturday afternoon will feature simulator interfacing seminars presented by members of Viperpits.org. Saturday evening will feature the cockpit awards presentation and awards dinner inside the Cold War Air Museum hangar where guests will be surrounded by aircraft cockpits.
Some of the 2015 cockpits will include:
F-16 Fighting Falcon sim from California
AH-1 Cobra cockpit from Arkansas
Multiple F-16 sims from Texas
Sabreliner cockpit from Oklahoma
F-16 sim from Georgia
F-4 Phantom sim from Oklahoma
A-4 Skyhawk cockpit from Florida
F-111 cockpit from Georgia
C-172 sim from Kansas
The Cold War Air Museum flys North America's only pair of Mi-24 Hind attack helicopters and is located at the Lancaster airport near the Dallas/Ft. Worth Commemorative Air Force facility.
Registration and info atthe Cockpit-Fest USA 2015 Homepage