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Story Of Art Lacey's 2 B-17G Flying Fortresses  
User currently offlineGeezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Posted (1 year 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 7693 times:

I have always loved the B-17 Flying Fortress, and I have always enjoyed looking at photos of them. I recently received an email which had many photographs of vintage service stations, and one of these service stations actually had a B-17 Flying Fortress sitting on top of it; it's a great photo to be sure, and it got me to checking the internet for more information about it; I found what I was looking for, and I found about a dozen websites with the story; some tell it a bit better than others, and some have more pictures than others. But I've already seen many great pictures of B-17's, and I'm guessing there are probably a few right here in the Airliners data base. But it's not the picture that's so interesting.........it's the story about how the B-17 in the picture got from an Air Base in Oklahoma, to it's final "resting place" on top of a gas station in Oregon ! It's one of the most "unusual", "unlikely" stories I've ever come across about a former War Bird. I think you'll agree when you read it.

http://crreader.com/2007/07/15/the-b...station-milwaukee-oregon-revisited


Big version: Width: 960 Height: 599 File size: 121kb
Art Lacey's Second B-17 Flying Fortress, "Lacey's Lady"


[Edited 2013-01-08 20:45:09]


Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
11 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineHaveBlue From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 2121 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (1 year 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 7499 times:

That is an awesome story Geezer, thanks for sharing buddy!


Here Here for Severe Clear!
User currently offlineKC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12171 posts, RR: 51
Reply 2, posted (1 year 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 7211 times:

Great story. The B-17 is one of my all time favorite airplanes (the KC-135, another Boeing product, is of course #1). But the 'Fort could take an amazine amount of abuse and combat damage, much more than the B-24 could. Here is a web site dedicated to damaged B-17s;

http://www.daveswarbirds.com/b-17/contents.htm

The B-24 may have carried a bigger bomb load, and may have carried it further, but it didn't bring her crew home as well as the B-17 did.


User currently offlineGeezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 6688 times:

Quoting HaveBlue (Reply 1):
That is an awesome story Geezer, thanks for sharing buddy!

Thanks a lot HaveBlue ! I'm glad you enjoyed it ! I know I sure did (BTW......read the one below)

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 2):
Great story. The B-17 is one of my all time favorite airplanes (the KC-135, another Boeing product, is of course #1). But the 'Fort could take an amazine amount of abuse and combat damage, much more than the B-24 could. Here is a web site dedicated to damaged B-17s;

Thanks Ed !

Before I moved to Indiana 10 years ago, I lived about 25, 30 miles south of Dayton; I used to go up to the Air Force Museum a lot, sometimes a couple of times a week. After I got to know some of the people who worked there, and a few of the people who volunteered, they used to tell me all kinds of stuff about some of the planes. One day I was talking with an older gentleman who volunteered as a "docent", and somehow we got to talking about B-17s;

I was telling him about some of the stories I had read about all of the big bombing raids on Germany during WW2, how I thought about the guys flying through that flack, all the German fighters, and at one point I remarked, "yeah, I sure would like to be able to talk to one the flight crew of one of those "Forts", ......the fellow looked at me, smiled this big grin, said, "you know, "I think that could easily be arranged" ! For a minute I wasn't sure what to say, so asked him, "so, do you know some one that crewed a B-17 during the war "? Fellow smiles, says "yeah, me" ! (turns out he was a B-17 pilot, with buku missions)

I thought I was gonna feint ! You never knew who you might see at the museum; another time I was there, it was during the week, (I always like to go on week days because there are usually a lot less people); anyway, as it was getting maybe 3:30, 4:00 PM or so, they were setting up all these tables and chairs, started bringing in a bunch of cut flowers for the tables, had all these fancy white table cloths, so I assumed some kind of big function was going to take place. I asked one of the fellows that worked there, he told me it was a big annual meeting of some "association", can't remember just what anymore, but anyway, I started seeing some really "well dressed" civilians coming in, then in walks this guy in uniform, I got as close as I could so I could see what he had on his shoulders......3 big shiny stars ! Ordinarily they're never "pushy" clearing visitors out when it's about closing time, but due to this big "event" they were starting to "round up" all the stragglers like me.

I found out just as I was leaving there was a couple of astronauts going to be there, and I think Robin Olds was one of the guests. I would have given my right arm to have had an "invite" to that shindig, just to see who all the VIP's were.

Shortly before I knew I was going to move to Indiana, I was talking to another guy who was an employee at the museum, and by this time he had got to know me, and that I love airplanes and military history, so he told me if I would like to become a volunteer, that I would have no problem; I was really thinking strongly about doing it, but about that time I had meet this lady online who lived in Indiana, and after a year of just emailing each other, I finally met her, so I was afraid to make any commitments of time; That was all ten years ago; it was a good thing I didn't get tied up at the museum, because that "lady" and I just got married on December, 23 (which was my 80 th birthday)


Charley



Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
User currently offlinesprout5199 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 1855 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (1 year 9 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 6491 times:

Quoting Geezer (Reply 3):
I just got married on December, 23 (which was my 80 th birthday)

Good for you!!!

Hmm December 23rd, a great day in history, as I was born on this day also.

Dan in Jupiter


User currently offlineSKC From United States of America, joined Oct 2012, 118 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (1 year 9 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 6429 times:

I had a relative that was a B17 navigator and would keep one of the discarded safety pins (kotter pin) from a bomb for each mission flown. He would tag each pin with the date, specific target and location, and amount of total bombs dropped on that mission. I was able to end up with them just a few years ago and have them displayed in a nice shadow box. Pretty cool little look into his time in Europe.


ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineGeezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Reply 6, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 6362 times:

[quote=SKC,reply=5]He would tag each pin with the date, specific target and location, and amount of total bombs dropped on that mission. That is a fantastic story, SKC !

Pretty cool little look into his time in Europe.

Tell me, is your relative "still with us" ( I hope ) That sounds like something I would do ! I'm always looking for a "souvenir" from meaningful places I've been, or a small fragment from something that is "historic".

Just after WW2 was over, the Air Force always had an "Open House" at Patterson Field at Fairborn, Ohio every year; one year they had the wreckage of a captured German V2 rocket on display; it had apparently never been launched, but the rear part of it was a little torn up; I managed to twist off a small fragment of the metal skin, maybe 3 cm in diameter; surprisingly, it wasn't aluminum, but seemed to be some sort of light alloy.

Your "pin collection"........to me that would definitely have great historical significance; I think if I had something like that, I would probably contact the Museum of the USAF at Dayton, Ohio, and ask them of their opinion about something like that. As much as I have always liked to collect things, since I have now reached the age of 80, I have to recognize that we are all just "mere" people, and people are "here today, and gone the next"; this was really impressed on me just recently when I took some things to a local auction house to be auctioned off;

Just the day before, a lady had brought in an absolutely HUGE collection of WW 2 era German military books, all sorts of German military memorabilia, and everything was in such pristine condition; I knew right then several things; namely, that "someone" had spent a lot of time, a lot of money, and an awful lot of effort to amass such a fine collection; also, I realized that the person who had put in all of that effort had almost certainly "passed on", and now this fabulous collection was going to be sold "piece meal" to any number of people who almost certainly lacked any great interest in all of these rare and irreplaceable items. The next day after the auction was over I was asking the owner's wife about it, and she confirmed my assumptions; the owner had been a ww2 veteran, one of his relatives had consigned the entire collection, and it DID in fact "bring" a tiny fraction of what it would have brought in the right venue.

If I was in possession of that collection you mention, I would give serious thought to either donating it to a museum, or possibly allowing it's display, while retaining ownership. An awful lot more interested people would then have an opportunity to see it, and when anything happens to you, it would be in a very good place. (Just an idea)

Charley



Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
User currently offlineSKC From United States of America, joined Oct 2012, 118 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 6334 times:

Quoting Geezer (Reply 6):
If I was in possession of that collection you mention, I would give serious thought to either donating it to a museum, or possibly allowing it's display, while retaining ownership. An awful lot more interested people would then have an opportunity to see it, and when anything happens to you, it would be in a very good place. (Just an idea)

Charley, that is a fantastic idea. I can't believe I hadn't even thought about it. It's currently just resting in the attic as we just moved and I'm not sure where I would display it in my house as it. I'll have to look into it.

The veteran that collected them was my wife's grandfather's cousin. My wife and her grandfather are no longer with us, and I don't believe the cousin is still around, so it may be difficult to get much info about his tours. I do have a copy of a photo of his B17 crew and a letter he wrote to my wife's mom when she was a little girl.

I ended up with them as her grandfather knew I was an aviation freak and figured I'd like to have them.



ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineAreopagus From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1372 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 6310 times:

My uncle flew 33 combat missions over Europe in the B-17 "Red Alert!" (so named because my aunt was a redhead). He had felt sorry for himself for being short, until he disembarked after one combat mission, to see a ground crewman gaping at him. His helmet had been sliced open by a shell across the top.

He said he was quite happy to be flying the more rugged B-17 rather than the B-24.


User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2391 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 6289 times:
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Quoting Geezer (Reply 6):
Just after WW2 was over, the Air Force always had an "Open House" at Patterson Field at Fairborn, Ohio every year; one year they had the wreckage of a captured German V2 rocket on display; it had apparently never been launched, but the rear part of it was a little torn up; I managed to twist off a small fragment of the metal skin, maybe 3 cm in diameter; surprisingly, it wasn't aluminum, but seemed to be some sort of light alloy.

Some of the tankage of the V-2 was aluminum, but the major structural stuff was steel. There was some graphite in the fins, and even odd bits of wood here and there.


User currently offlineGeezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (1 year 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 5259 times:

Quoting rwessel (Reply 9):
Some of the tankage of the V-2 was aluminum, but the major structural stuff was steel. There was some graphite in the fins, and even odd bits of wood here and there.

Thanks for that, rwessel; The little metal fragment I was speaking of was definitely part of the skin, and not something internal; and it really felt as though it was some sort of steel; it's been so long, and I'm not absolutely certain of this, but I seem to remember taking a magnet to it to see if it was steel; and I seem to recall that the magnet wasn't attracted to it. I don't know much about metallurgy, but having worked at Armco Steel for a time, just prior to enlisting in the Navy, I realize that stainless steel isn't magnetic either; however, I would be greatly surprised if someone were to tell me that the Germans used SS for the skin of the V-2, as it's not like the things were designed to "be around" for any length of time!



Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2391 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (1 year 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 5157 times:
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Quoting Geezer (Reply 10):
Thanks for that, rwessel; The little metal fragment I was speaking of was definitely part of the skin, and not something internal; and it really felt as though it was some sort of steel; it's been so long, and I'm not absolutely certain of this, but I seem to remember taking a magnet to it to see if it was steel; and I seem to recall that the magnet wasn't attracted to it. I don't know much about metallurgy, but having worked at Armco Steel for a time, just prior to enlisting in the Navy, I realize that stainless steel isn't magnetic either; however, I would be greatly surprised if someone were to tell me that the Germans used SS for the skin of the V-2, as it's not like the things were designed to "be around" for any length of time!

Although the majority of steel used is magnetic, there are many steels that are not, including the majority (but not all) of the so-called "stainless" steels. For example, most of the 400-series stainless steels *are* magnetic. The main reason a steel is magnetic or not, depends on what the crystal structure looks like. Many high-nickel steels (once you get past about 12%) are non-magnetic. Most stainless steels are "stainless" because of a high chromium content, although the most common stainless alloys contain a considerable amount of nickel as well.

But therein may lie the answer. Martensitic steels are high nickel, and are often used for their superior strength (hence light weight for a given strength), while maintaining excellent workability (in this case the ability to roll it into sheets is relevant). Once you heat treat that, you get a type of maraging steel, which is still commonly used in missile skins. And IIRC, all maraging steels are inherently non-magnetic.


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