Apollo 11 Memories

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Smersh

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My main memory of Apollo 11 is of staying awake until about 4 am (UK time,) just before Armstrong stepped down the ladder and waiting for the action to begin on an ancient black-and-white tv set - then dosing off and missing it by about 5 mins ... ! (I was working as a relief manager for a chain of newsagents shops at the time and had to be up at about 5 am anyway. I was staying in the flat above the shop.)

When I went to open up the shop and unpack the newspapers, the headlines of course were all "Man On Moon" :cool:
 
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MeteorWayne

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ZenGalacticore":v770sn8w said:
Jim and Wayne,

Wow. I didn't realize this thread was supposed to be about deep, intellectual recollections. I mean, the title of the thread is: "Apollo 11 Memories". Jim, you were 11, and I was 6.* I remember it just like I related above.


*How old were you in '69 Wayne?

I was 17, had just graduated high school and gotten my driver's license on the same day a month before, and was stiill working at my first job. I was at the 3rd table from the wall just in front of the artificial orange drink machine at "Mr Bees" wiping off the table when "The Eagle has landed" :)
 
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yevaud

Guest
I was ten years old, and watched with rapt attention on a tiny PhilCo black and white TV in my bedroom.

It didn't hurt that I was already addicted to Andre Norton, Robert Heinlein, and "Perry Rhodan!"
 
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3488

Guest
Of course I do not remeber, I was only 4 months & 16 days old at the time & had only been out of hospital for about seven weeks then (I was very premature, but it was Apollo derived technology that helped save my life).

However I have met two Apollo 15 astronauts, Commander Alfred Worden & the Late Jim Irwin, that was a great experience.

Andrew Brown.
 
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bushuser

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I think its interesting how similar our memories are...humankind was was all linked together by television briefly. My memory [age 12] is of that blurry black & white image, long after the rest of my family had given up and gone to bed. I was determined for the next 20 years that I would buy a ticket to the moon one day...what a shame that we waste so many resources on lesser pursuits. I sat near Al Bean 2 days ago at a restaurant in Florida. That's the closest I've ever been to any astronaut.
 
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crazyeddie

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jim48":3uszcvyv said:
Then you were probably as let down as I was when we didn't build those Stanley Kubrick space stations and moon bases. I remember at the time of Apollo 11 Vice-President Agnew, who chaired some space committee, announcing plans for a manned Mars landing by the late '70s. Seriously. Sigh.

"Let down" is an understatement. I had faith that the world I saw depicted in 2001 would come to pass in my lifetime.....or at least the opportunity for ordinary people to somehow get into orbit. Of course, I also fully expected to have a flying car, a wall-sized 3-D TV set, an apartment in the sky, and a sassy robot maid by this point in my life! :lol:

I've always thought it odd that the public's fascination with movies and TV shows on space exploration never seemed to have any effect on support for NASA and manned missions. The public was behind Apollo because it was a race to the moon with the Russians. The loss of interest that followed our success seems to imply that we're collectively rather shallow when it comes to space ventures......we love the idea of it, but not if it means we have to pay higher taxes. to actually do it.
 
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crazyeddie

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bushuser":39ske6wq said:
I sat near Al Bean 2 days ago at a restaurant in Florida. That's the closest I've ever been to any astronaut.

I met Sally Ride a few months ago. She was in the office discussing the governor's Math and Science Initiative with the faculty, and they introduced us because everyone in the office knows what a space nut I am. It was hard not to gush over her! She is a surprisingly little woman....I somehow imagined her to be taller.
 
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doublehelix

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I don't have any memories of that day, sadly. I am too young. :oops: :cool:

However, I turned 1 year old that day, July 16, 1969. I have felt a special kinship with this mission and have always held a fondness for it. :mrgreen:

Now you know how old I am, too! :lol:

-dh
 
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Shaky

Guest
I was seven (and also a cute kid) and Apollo was my life. At that time you could mail NASA for various printed materials. My mom did this for me and we had some books, photos and posters that I wore out by looking at them every single day. On the night of the first moon walk I was glued to the TV. I remember the landing earlier and at seven was a little confused with audio only, but I got it. The feeling of nerves and excitement and sheer awe has never been matched in my life. I often wonder what it would have been like with a better quality image/camera, but something about that grainy B&W video seemed well suited to the first.

We have had a few "synchronous moments" since, where a huge % of the world watches a particular event, but only Apollo 11 was positive and a good thing. My favorite quote ever. After coming back to Earth the astronauts in quarantine watched video of the press coverage and reaction around the world. Buzz turned to Neil and said, "Hey, we missed the whole thing." Brilliant!

http://www.space.com/news/a11_wherewereyou.html
After returning to Earth, we were picked up by the U.S.S. Hornet in the Pacific Ocean, just south of Hawaii. Within hours after we boarded the aircraft carrier, they piped into our quarantine trailer and replayed broadcasts from around the world of the different news reports of our mission. As we watched those broadcasts and saw the emotion and reactions of so many people, I looked over at Neil and said, "Hey, we missed the whole thing!"
 
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jim48

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Yes, I remember when you could write to NASA and get tons of free literature on every project they had going. I must have had two boxes of pamphlets and such. They got lost in a move many years later. I wish I still had all of that. Apollo got going under John Kennedy, who of course did not live to see Apollo 11. Richard Nixon inherited it. The Navy was going to dispatch the carrier U.S.S. John F. Kennedy to pick up the Apollo 11 crew, but that was just too much for Tricky Dick, who had narrowly lost the 1960 election to Kennedy. The U.S.S. Hornet got the job instead.
 
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silylene

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I was 10 yrs old at the time, and I was a HUGE space fan. I watched (and remember) every Apollo, every Gemini, watched (but don't remember) the Mercury launches, read every scrap of information about every unmanned flight, and had read every space book carried in our public library. I had a huge National Geographic map of the moon on my bedroom wall. I stayed up all night with Walter Cronkite watching Apollo 11, didn't miss a second.
 
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Chryseplanatia

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"Did you know the walls of the LM were like aluminum foil, it was easy to put your elbow thru them? Not sure but
I bet they always wore their suits in it. Did you know the floor of the LM was made of a sandwich of aluminum
and balsa wood, to save weight? Did not think so.

This is an interesting historical topic. Lots of different info on the web. While the above is generally true, if you see a cross-section of the LM the hull is a bit thicker than that. And must of it is a sandwich of pressure hull, perpendicular ribs, and outer hull. So while it was thin, it was not quite as flimsy as sometimes claimed; it is really rather rigid- those Grumman guys knew their stuff. Re suits inside: they took the off lots of times, between EVA's, during sleep periods, etc. Only real risk was a micrometeorite impact, and the suits were so uncomfortable that I guess they didn't much care at that point.

And the balsa- heck, if it's good enough for the floorboard sandwich of my Corvette, why not in the LM? It's strong stuff; just don't get it near open flame...

Did you know the LM ascent engine took 10 years of engineering to get it down to 7 moving parts? A theorem
in mechanical design is that the fewer moving parts the more reliable. Everything on that propulsion system
was duplicated. Backups for everything, except the nozzle. Gosh, what if that failed?

Only thing Armstrong didn't get that he wanted was manual valve backups for the pyro's that fired, opening the valves for the hypergolic fuels. Good thing those worked too!

And while the LM engine was a marvel, the SM engine was really something. Same basic idea, except a lot bigger and more powerful, and had to fire, stop, and fire again numerous times. I think that one woulda made me even more nervous.

I wondered what would have happened if when it landed, it tilted maybe 30 or 45 degrees. Could they straighten it?

No straightening allowed (or possible). I forget the maximum allowable tilt for liftoff, but it wasn't much. Hence, the care the guys took during landing. It's a big, heavy muthuh, that LM. If it was too far off, they might have tried it anyway, but engineering predictions indicated that it would fail.

So please excuse the clarifications; not trying to be a prig, just had the info handy and thought I'd toss it out there.
 
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MeteorWayne

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Chryseplanatia;
Thanx for all that info, much of it was new to me.
 
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freya

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I remember my first memories of the Apollo project where those of Apollo 10. I was living in England and was 6 years old. There was of course lots of information out there, on the TV and in books, but my six year old mind couldn't quite comprehend the big picture.
I was on hand to see live b&w pictures of the lunar surface as it scrolled below the windows of Charlie Brown. Like everyone else, I would say, if they are going all the way to the Moon, why not land. I think Dad or Mum explained that the Lunar Module was too heavy to land and they want to make sure everything worked. I was aware that the two craft had seperated and that the Lunar Module was going in for a close look - but the TV stayed with the Command Module (in England, we didn't use abbreaviations - LEM, CM. Actually TV was often Telly).
Now of course, I new enough to know that there was nothing living on the Moon, no air or water, okay, I believed that fact. But it didn't stop me imagining that little Moon creatures lived in the craters, and they could see the CM coming, and as it flew over head, they shut the lid on the crater (the shadowed floor of the crater) closing like a trap door, so we couldn't see them! Glad I let go of that one. Dad got me up for the A11 landing, but I think I was asleep by the time they got outside for the Moonwalk. Buzz, what a cool name. I was a little envious of a kid in my class whose surname was...Armstrong. Such happy memories, made happier that we can share them today.
Gaz
 
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Chryseplanatia

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Wayne- always happy to show off a bit.

Gaz- are you SURE there aren't trap-door Selenites? We've only explored a fraction of the surface of the moon, ad maybe they can see things like Change-E, Kaguya and LRO coming... come to think of it, maybe this next impactro will start an interplanetary (inter-body?) war! :lol:
 
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jim48

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Chryseplanatia":3p3og91f said:
Wayne- always happy to show off a bit.

Gaz- are you SURE there aren't trap-door Selenites? We've only explored a fraction of the surface of the moon, ad maybe they can see things like Change-E, Kaguya and LRO coming... come to think of it, maybe this next impactro will start an interplanetary (inter-body?) war! :lol:

When you get into the nuts-and-bolts of Apollo it is amazing, particularly the Saturn V. How many moving parts?!! Just boggles the mind. It all looks so easy watching launches and moonwalks on tv, but God the work that went into it. My brother is an even bigger--and older--space program buff than I am. He just got in the mail LIFE magazines from that era. He's actually a Mercury junkie. He was showing me some stuff recently about how hard it was to get the early Redstones and Atlas's going where they wanted them to, re-the math and the hardware. Apollo was just amazing, and I know a few guys who worked on that program, either for NASA or Rockwell or North American and they've all been contacted about working on the new moon program and I tell them go for it!!! You did it before and you can do it again!
 
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freya

Guest
Hey Jim48 and (yes I remember Viking too) Chyrseplanatia, thanks for sharing. I often say to my fellow lab subordinates (yeah, they understand), if they make a mistake, 'don't panic, we're not landing man on the Moon' (ha ha). Now, I'm doing a new task - unfamiliar work enviroment, lots to learn, lots of stress and I'm making mistakes, kinda big. Thankfully, I'm NOT landing man on the Moon, or they'd be dead.
Gaz
 
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Sehala

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I was six years old and sick with the flu. Our color TV had conked and we watched it on our small black and white set, the whole family sitting in our living room on the fold-out couch bed. I remember it vividly, as I was a complete space geek and I'd been following the missions since at least Apollo 8 (the first I can still remember). A few years later in grade school, I remember commiserating with my best friend and fellow space geek that we were too young and would miss out on being the first men on Mars. Who knew?
 
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starwood

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I was 12 and I recall watching the first steps then running to the window and looking up to see the same moon they were walking on. What a time in our lives.
 
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Robert Roy Britt

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I wonder how many people like myself kinda sorta remember it. I was 7, and i have an image in my head of the moon landing footage on a small B&W TV in my parent's bedroom, but frankly I'm not certain if I remember it or have made a montage of memories retained since. I'd like NASA to go back just so I can get a new memory to hold on to.
 
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JonHouston

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I was almost 9 years old when the Eagle landed on the Moon. I was in my grandparent's living room, watching it on an old black and white TV. The event shaped me dramatically and served to intensify my interest in science, math, physics and it also stroked my curiosity in a huge way.

I remember it like it was yesterday and my Uncle had to turn off the TV, I can still hear him saying, "That's enough of men walking on the moon, it's time to go to sleep...." With that, I had to go to bed, but I stayed up late watching it and would have watched the entire moonwalk if I could have!

Space is humanity's future - there are vast resources there and we can expand life into the cosmos!

Ad Astra!
 
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Krispace

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You yung'ns think you're old! Well. when I was a nipper, I was reading in the UK Royal Air Force magazine all about the fantastic things America(and Britain too!) was going to do in Space and 14 years later - @ 2 AM with a whining. pregnant wife(to be) I watched Neil take "One small step for a (I HEARD IT DISTINCTLY!) man, one giant leap for mankind" in glorious shadowy Black and White, LIVE! An air of unreality I must admit! But, 3-1/2 years later when I FELT Apollo 17 lift off for the Moon at Cape "Kennedy" for real: mind blowing - not to mention what it did to my stomach and everything else! Hey! We had a future back then R.I.P.
 
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elroy_jetson

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I was 10 and watched it at home on our black and white TV. I remember being absolutely certain that there would be a permanently manned Moon base by the time I graduated high school. Now, 40 years later, they talk about going back to the Moon and finally starting to build that first outpost - maybe in 2020. While I do hope it happens, the fact that it didn't happen decades ago is deeply disappointing.
 
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