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 Post subject: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Sun 09, 2017 5:34 am 
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Tomorrow, if all goes according to plan, I get to do this as a present...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naH-_lv ... e=youtu.be

This will be the third flyable B-17 I have seen in person and the first I will have ridden in.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Sun 09, 2017 6:04 am 
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Very cool.... have fun!

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Sun 09, 2017 10:55 am 
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Thanks for sharing.
Twelve 50 caliber machine guns were installed in the aircraft. What was the size of the total crew?

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Sun 09, 2017 1:37 pm 
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decoflair wrote:
What was the size of the total crew?
Prior to 07 June 1944 - Original Crews - 10 Crewmen

Officers:
    Pilot
    Co-Pilot
    Navigator / Flexible Gunner
    Bombardier / Flexible Gunner, Chin Turret Gunner (B-17G)


Enlisted Men:
    Flight Engineer / Top Turret Gunner
    Radio Operator / Flexible Gunner
    Ball Turret Gunner
    Left Waist Flexible Gunner
    Right Waist Flexible Gunner
    Tail Turret Gunner


Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Sun 09, 2017 3:50 pm 
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These were very brave soldiers beyond belief.

Quote:
In a single 376 plane raid in August 1943, 60 B-17s were shot down. That was a 16 percent loss rate and meant 600 empty bunks in England . In 1942-43 it was statistically impossible for bomber crews to complete a 25-mission tour in Europe .


Source of statement: http://www.wwiifoundation.org/students/wwii-aircraft-facts/

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Mon 10, 2017 2:00 pm 
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Everything worked out and my two kids and I got to ride on B-17 Nine-O-Nine from the Marana, AZ airport around Picacho Peak and back to the airport. If/when I get the time I may be able to post a video on Youtube (my Windows Live Movie Maker is being obstinate at the moment with the MTS files).

The radio room was complete with BC-348 and a set of Command Receivers and Transmitters. I got pictures of all of that as well (may post pictures here later).

It was something to poke your head out of the top of the plane while flying after making sure you are holding your hat and glasses to avoid losing them in the wind.

We got to be in all positions during the flight except for Tail Gunner (blocked off). Being in the bombardier position was pretty amazing.

There was a crew of 3 on the flight and 10 passengers.

I was kind of amazed how few 500 pound bombs a B-17 actually held (looks like 6 was it for a set). I suppose there was room for another 6 behind the 1st set (that would make 12 or 6000 pounds). I am not sure about a 3rd set. This was a B-17G which is rated for 9600 pounds so I guess there must have been room for a 3rd set.

All in all a great day.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Mon 10, 2017 9:09 pm 
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That looked fantastic Curtis. That would have been so much fun.Look forward to your you tube.
Bruce


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Mon 10, 2017 10:07 pm 
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The B-17 does sometime seems to carry few bombs. There are tradeoffs in loading up a plane to it's maximum takeoff weight. Fuel, ammo, munitions, etc. Most B-17 war time missions in Europe were considered long range which meant a maximum fuel load. Most bombs for those missions were 500lb which limited how many they could take. Supposedly there were external racks available for the B-17 though I've never seen a picture of it. More bombs each of less weight. The B-24 could carry more, but it didn't have the same battle toughness. Brave men all of the crews. Each flight was many hours of risk regardless of the bomb load.


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: Apr Wed 12, 2017 4:26 am 
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Here is a video of the experience.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6iGnskLKKE

Radios starting at about 16:35.

Curtis Eickerman

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Fri 12, 2017 2:39 am 
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Just found this thread. My family treated me to a ride for my 60th birthday 16 years ago at the Reading PA Mid-Atlantic Air Museum's WWII Weekend. The B-17 was "Fuddy Duddy". The wife and I were still active living history participants at the time so I was in uniform and was given the radio operator's seat for take-off and landing. Once airborne we were free to move about and as you did Curtis, I sat in the bombardier's seat in the nose bubble. There's nothing like it, is there. Any of you folks get a chance don't pass it up. If you want something a little more nerve wracking, try a B-25. You have to wear ear protection it's so loud inside. I flew left waist gunner on the Mid-Atlantic Air Museum's B-25 "Briefing Time" when I was a member there.

Image

Larry

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sun 14, 2017 12:43 am 
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What a lovely picture Larry. Nice to see you both and meet your son. How was the graduation.
Bruce


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sun 14, 2017 9:32 pm 
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Thanks for sharing your video!

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sun 14, 2017 10:24 pm 
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I am SOOOOOOOOOO jealous!!!!
Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sun 14, 2017 11:03 pm 
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Dale Saukerson wrote:
The B-17 does sometime seems to carry few bombs. There are tradeoffs in loading up a plane to it's maximum takeoff weight. Fuel, ammo, munitions, etc. Most B-17 war time missions in Europe were considered long range which meant a maximum fuel load. Most bombs for those missions were 500lb which limited how many they could take. Supposedly there were external racks available for the B-17 though I've never seen a picture of it. More bombs each of less weight. The B-24 could carry more, but it didn't have the same battle toughness. Brave men all of the crews. Each flight was many hours of risk regardless of the bomb load.


I read somewhere that at one point during the war, someone figured out that it took 400 lbs of paint to paint a B-17. So by eliminating the paint they could carry another bomb.


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Tue 16, 2017 12:35 am 
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bruce47 wrote:
What a lovely picture Larry. Nice to see you both and meet your son. How was the graduation.
Bruce

Bruce, it was great to see you and your wife again. Graduation was perfect. We could not have asked for a nicer day. Driving around the Washington beltway down and back was no fun though.

Larry

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Tue 16, 2017 1:06 am 
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I read that the 8th Air Force lost more men over Europe than the Marines did in the entire pacific campaign!


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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Tue 16, 2017 7:03 pm 
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Very nice! I plan on seeing that aircraft this weekend.

-EJ

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 5:33 pm 
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Eickerman wrote:
Tomorrow, if all goes according to plan, I get
to do this as a present...
This will be the third flyable B-17 I have seen in person and the first
I will have ridden in. Curtis Eickerman

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6iGnskLKKE

Very Cool, Curtis! 8)

I too have seen three of them, but have yet to take a flight.

My father was an: "Enlisted Man: Radio Operator / Flexible (waist) Gunner"
during WW2 in The Pacific Theatre. They were shot down over New Guinea,
my father being the only survivor.
He used to say that the sound of 'flak' was a terrifying sound to hear!

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 6:12 pm 
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Curtis, I am so very glad that you went on that B-17. None of us are getting any younger and these aircraft are getting fewer and fewer. I was fortunate to have flown on that very same aircraft two times and I went up in the B-24 out of Frederick Municipal Airport (KFDK) in Maryland several years ago. I hope to go up in the P-51 sometime soon but only if there is an agreement at the signing of the credit card payment, NO AEROBATICS!!!

Timing is wonderful, my cousin's son, a Major in the Air Force just went up in that B-17 this week! It is truly a small world.

Thanks for sharing and congratulations.

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 Post subject: Re: Tomorrow I get to do this... B-17
PostPosted: May Mon 22, 2017 2:09 am 
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Hello Eickerman,
yes have fun they have had flights from boeing field too .
Anyway I know guy who during the war his job was the belly gunner


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