The Corsair82: 82% F4U-1A Corsair

One of the reasons for my lack of progress on the Corsair82 in the last few years is about to be explained! After almost two years of being crippled, in mid 2008 I underwent dual knee replacement surgery. I had them done three weeks apart. I'm glad I didn't have them both done the same day. Full recovery took longer than I expected, but I also became very lazy during the whole process.
image_1.jpg
This shows the front view of my new right knee. The empty space between the upper and lower titanium "Parts" is filled with a plastic plate. I call it the "break pad". It has small depressions in it to allow the upper part to glide smoothly. It doesn't show up on x-ray images. There is also some sort of mechanical over center stop, so my knee doesn't bend the wrong direction.
image_2.jpg
A view of my left leg, from the right side. A saw like a "Sawzall" was used to cut the bone away to shape it for the new parts. I was awake through the procedure. I elected to use an epidural. That means they numbed me below the waist. I still had some other Happy Stuff going through my system. The anesthesiology was performed by a friend of mine who I fly with, from time to time. He owns a T-6. We BS-ed a bit about flying while this was going on, though I don't remember a whole lot.
pic_1.jpg
My right leg. Notice the knee cap. They split the knee cap like an Oreo cookie. The part with the ligaments attached is kept in place and glued to a plastic disk. I guess that allows it to slide on the new parts. All of the plastic parts are a high density nylon like the white stuff we use in airplanes.
pic_4.jpg
I hope this isn't too graphic, but this is what the aftermath looked like. The scars are not too bad now.

Believe it or not, the biggest problem I have with my new knees is getting to work. Since I am an airline pilot, I go through airport security, sometimes two or three times a day. I do not go through the new type scanners, as I do not think that much x-ray exposure is healthy. That means I get the "pat down" each time.

It took about six months or so for me to believe I did the right thing in having my knees replace. Now they are almost like my own were when I was young. They are much much better then just before I had them replaced.

Total recovery time? I'll let you know.


Return to The Corsair82 Page