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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2018 11:56 pm 
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Location: San Francisco
The red coupe in front of the B-17; note the thickness of the wing.
Those planes gave the crews the best chances of returning since the structure in general was stout, but the wing is especially so. Later designs used 'stressed-skin' (monocoque; 356 [!]) engineering. Great for structure/payload weight ratios, but not so wonderful for damage survivability; like an egg shell, one topological failure meant the entire structure was gonna fold soon thereafter.
You could shoot holes in the B-17 wing all day long, and all that was lost was the lift now missing from 1" diameter holes. Unless you got lucky and hit structural elements in far more than one of the Warren trusses taking the wing loads. You know, kinda like the Warren trusses used on railroad bridges.
Stout!
(Edit: "Warren", not "Wilson", dummy!)

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Last edited by Ron LaDow on Wed May 30, 2018 12:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2018 9:02 pm 
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Ron,Did you see this article in Hemmings?


Attachments:
B-17.jpeg
B-17.jpeg [ 391.25 KiB | Viewed 361 times ]

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 12:10 am 
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Dan, I missed that one. Had a chance to get inside a -17 at the Hayward airport several years back; you needed to be a young man to fit in there.
Are you still flying out of Gnoss? Flew out of Petaluma last summer on a 'training flight' (my log's long out of date) over the repairs to the Oroville Dam. Had a good time, don't eat at the OVE cafeteria.

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 8:24 am 
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I remember as a kid in the late 50's to last 60's there was one in Portland Oregon the filling station was called the bomber and had one of the cheapest places to buy gas. Remember going there with my dad and getting 50 gal drums filled with gas when a gas war was going on. It was so cool as the pumps were located under the plane. wonder how many of those station were across the country.

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 11:05 am 
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Location: Gilroy, CA
Yesterday a B-17 flew over the house pretty low, the Collings Foundation has been doing their annual Freedom Tour, locally in Monterey and Livermore, this weekend they will be in Sacramento. Then I'm browsing the Talk Forum and guess what a thread on B-17s. We have lots of vintage aircraft in the area, Mustangs, Steermans, and Texans, but rarely is there a four motor radial engined plane doing fly-bys. The gas station in the picture was just south of Portland on Highway 99. There was also a DC-6 above a Drive In CA south of Stockton, and another one as a cafe in Rio Vista, but guessing not many WWII bombers made it to private use.


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 11:20 am 
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Location: Alpine AZ, Green Valley AZ
Back in 1966, we modified B-17G #44-83864 (N73648) at Cal-Nat Airways in Grass Valley for fire-fighting use by installing the necessary tanks and plumbing. A couple of years later it was sold to Black Hills Aviation when Cal-Nat went out of business. It was rumored to have eventually had the engines replaced with turbo-props, but I can't verify that. It met its demise when it crashed while flying on a fire near Socorro NM in 1972.

I only went up in it once during one of the test flights. It (and I assume all B-17s) handled like a truck. Very heavy on the controls.

I'll see if I can find a pic in my archives. Found it:

Attachment:
B17G E56.jpeg
B17G E56.jpeg [ 98.32 KiB | Viewed 272 times ]


Photo was taken at the Loma Rica Air Attack Base at Grass Valley, CA.

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Last edited by Wes Bender on Wed May 30, 2018 6:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 3:39 pm 
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Ron,
Sold my airplane because of the Great Recession...real bummer!

I used to fly down to the old Castle Air Force Base to visit the museum there. They have (had?) a B-17 that you could crawl through. Really fun.

BTW, someone mentioned Portland. That's where the photo I posted and the Hemmings article was from. That B-17 is now being restored

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 4:49 pm 
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Yes, Steve Douglas, we were up in Alamo, CA this weekend and a B-17 flew over several times at relatively low altitude, made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. Must have been the same one. Nothing like that sound!!!

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 7:26 pm 
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Dan, September 2nd is Open Cockpit Day at Castle, Museum, Sunday of Labor Day Weekend, so getting there and back could be a bit traumatic, I went about 4 years ago and it was great they even had a B-52 flyover, like 600' with full throttle, the fumes and unburnt fuel settle on the crowd, but was pretty cool. Maybe a 356 gathering at the museum some day would be fun, they have 2 or 3 Open Cockpit Days a Year.


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 8:41 pm 
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Steve & Dan, thanks for the information on the photo I thought that looked like the one in Portland my Dad and I would go to when gas wars were going on use to take 50 gallon barrels and get them filled.

George

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2018 11:53 pm 
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A few years back I took a ride on this B-17 ,the 909, when the Collings folk visited Bremerton, Wa.. A few shots from that experience. These planes were not built for comfort. As I recall, they took 9 passengers and we sat on the floor for take off and landing. Once in the air we were free ro roam around the plane. Interesting experience to say the least. With open waist gun positions and high altitude it must have been a very cold mission. And of course people were trying to kill you for being there. Nothing but admiration for those who flew in these machines.
My first attempt to upload so I hope it works.


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B-17 - 6 of 6.jpg
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B-17 - 3 of 6.jpg
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B-17 - 1 of 6.jpg
B-17 - 1 of 6.jpg [ 97.04 KiB | Viewed 248 times ]
B-17 - 2 of 6.jpg
B-17 - 2 of 6.jpg [ 57.94 KiB | Viewed 248 times ]
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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 11:01 am 
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The Axis had no idea of the capabilities of the USA before the war. B17 production stopped in 1945 with a total of around 12,700 planes. The war effort consumed almost all manufacturing during the war years and to quote "Bunky" Knudsen; an automotive industry executive "We won because we smothered the enemy in an avalanche of production, the like of which he had never seen, nor dreamed possible". He was head of GM after the war.
Germany, kept production numbers for armaments up in spite of the massive damage done by allied bombers even towards the end of the war but the human toll especially for Luftwaffe pilots became a limiting factor according to Albert Speer in his book. An Architect assigned to production in the waning years of the war. You see they don't just draw "purty pitchers"
As a kid, I grew up near MIA and I still remember the sound of those big radial engines used on DC 6's and 7's waking me up on cold winter mornings being run in on test stands. OK, 40 0r 50 deg was cold for Miami.
The smell of degreaser still reminds me of walking through the maintenance area of Delta's shops where my uncle was chief inspector. As a kid all of that stuff was magic, guess that's why I've had an addiction to air cooled Porsches. It's called imprinting by the psychologists : ))) :D
Ray


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 1:22 pm 
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As long as we are on the subject of WWII aircraft and the bravery of the men flying them, this short video provides some vision into what it must have been like: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sSXiny5mEpg

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2018 1:54 pm 
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Touching video. No doubt "THE GREATEST GENERATION"


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:13 am 
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My Uncle Steve left a safe New Zealand, and went to join the RAF. To become a Rear Gunner in a Lancaster Bomber, in Bomber Command. He survived it all.
He gave a lot of parties when he came back home. How proud I am. jim


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