World War II Warbirds

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by KenH, Feb 1, 2004.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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  2. KenH

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  3. Dr. Bob

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    Overlooking this thread. Sorry, Ken.

    Mine is the P-51 Mustang, esp those used in the Southeast Asian theater of operations. Think a John Wayne movie I saw as a youth influenced me!

    Can remember one of the shark-faced painted beauties landing at Wold Chamberlain field (now Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport) and getting a chance to sit in the cockpit.

    But hard to beat the quality weaponry of the German planes. Wow. They could blow holes in our boys while it looked like we had BB guns going against them.
     
  4. KenH

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    I wonder if you are referring to the movie "Flying Tigers" about the effort to save China from the Japanese using the P-40 - web page
     
  5. rsr

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    The P-40 was the plane used by the Flying Tigers. It was an early and vulnerable plane but was put to good use.

    The P-51 was the highest-performance non-jet fighter ever produced and was used in the European theater; its prime role was to escort bombers over Germany and beyond. It could fly circles around anything it found — until it encountered the MS-262, a jet aircraft that might have been a real threat would not have Hitler insisted on diverting resources from the program. Then again, the 262 required able pilots, which were in short supply by that time.

    The P-51 is a magnificent plane, but I really like the Corsair used in the Pacific, which was a capable plane and had a totally cool profile with its gull wings.
     
  6. KenH

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    German engineers had some great ideas and inventions for planes. But they had a hard time bringing them to fruition because of the constant bombing by the Allies. Both the German and the Japanese air forces started well but once they lost their best pilots they had no capable replacements for them in the same league as they were.
     
  7. Roy

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    WW2 war birds is an interesting topic - one that I can hardly tire of. The P-51 was a real gem. My dad worked on F6Fs during the war. He has a maintanance manual, that he brought home after the war. It is all about the guns - removal, installation, and repair.

    It amazes me, the number of celebrities who flew during the war. Tennessee Ernie was a bombadier instructor, in the Air Corps. Jimmy Stewart and Glen Ford were B-17 pilots. Rod Serling was a paratrooper (jumped out of airplanes).

    At a church where I once attended, one of the deacons was a former B-17 pilot. He said that before the war, the Air Corps had turned him down for pilot training, so he went to Canada where the RAF took him. He said that he had just finished his training when the U.S. declared war. Our government then bargained with the Canadiens to get the U.S. citizen pilots released to the Army Air Corps, because of our sudden need for trained pilots. He flew 37 combat missions. He met his wife during the war, who was an Army nurse. I enjoyed talking to him.

    Fascinating topic, Ken.

    Roy
     
  8. KenH

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    Wow. With 37 missions I imagine he had some very interesting stories to tell...and close calls.
     
  9. Hardsheller

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    The Wild Blue: The Men and Boys Who Flew the B-24s Over Germany 1944-45 by Stephen Ambrose. Good Book - I highly recommend it. It's about George McGovern's 35 Missions at the yoke of a B-24.
     
  10. Roy

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    Wow. With 37 missions I imagine he had some very interesting stories to tell...and close calls. </font>[/QUOTE]On second thought, I think it was 32, and not 37 missions, and in a B-24, not a B-17. It has been a few years since he told me that. He said that 25 missions was the standard, but due to a pilot shortage, his tour was extended. Beats me why there was a pilot shortage.

    I never probed him for war stories, because some vets are really sensitive about that.

    Roy
     
  11. Chrift

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    I love WW2 planes so much I can't just pick one :(

    Fighters:
    P-51 (who doesn't love them?)
    Messerschmitt 109

    Bombers:
    Stuka
    B-17
     
  12. just-want-peace

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    P-51
    P-38 "Twin-tail Devil" as per Germans!
    Corsair
    Grumman Hellcat

    B-17
    B-29
    B-36 (almost)
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  13. Melanie

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    Dont know much about aeroplanes but I have nursed quite a number of vets who were WWII vets flying in British Planes in the European theatre.

    One, they were reeelly noisy and the crews were deafened by flying in them.

    Two, tail gun charlies usually were hosed out of their cockpit, what a hideous concept, very few survived their missions.

    Three, one fella fell out of his bomber which was not a Lancashire but something similar but I forget, and landed alive although his parachute was on fire and the plane in crash mode. He was in hospital for months in Germany with serious head injuries and another prisoner said later he had the foulest mouth he had ever heard. This is from a man who did not swear as a rule. This guy survived his fall, his internment as a POW as is alive and well today. He does have a trick arm which is hunched in the shoulder and pretty useless, but he reckons God was looking after one little Aussie Bleeder that night over Cologne.
     
  14. blackbird

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    The P-38 Lightning!

    WW2 Ace Richard Bong said, "She climbs like a homesick Angel!"

    First US aircraft to outclass the Zero!
     
  15. KenH

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    I believe the F6F Hellcat was the first U.S. fighter to outclass the Zero.

    The P-38 was even better than the F6F but it came later in the war.
     
  16. Clay Knick

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    P-38
    P-51
    B-17
     
  17. Kayla

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    Northrop XB-35 "Flying Wing"

    Which actually didn't come into use until after the war but it was developed during the war so I consister it to be a WWII plane. It is an ancestor to steths.
     
  18. stevec

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    I can't believe nobody's mentioned one of the most beautiful birds of the war--the Supermarine Mk VB Spitfire.
     
  19. rsr

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    A grievous omission.
     
  20. KenH

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    For anyone interested in calendars of Warbirds, I have a couple of links where they can be purchased. Just send me an email or private message.
     

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