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Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:04 pm

Restoration Projects

Fri Oct 29, 2004 11:17 am

In no special order, here are some of the restoration projects currently in progress at the National Museum of the U. S. Air Force (See my topic on the name change).

I am using the current edition of the Museum's Friends Journal for most of this information.

Fisher P-75A Eagle - A composite airplane with bits and pieces from other airplanes and with a mid engine Allison V-3420. Big engine driving counterrotating props.

Bristol Beaufighter - Bits and pieces coming from the UK, Australia, or being fabricated.

Avro CF-100 Mk 4 Canuck - Contemporary of the F-86D, F-89, and the F-94.

North American RF-86F - A few were built as such at North American, but several were field conversions.

Republic RF-84K - Anhedral horizontal stabilizer to allow it to be carried in the belly (wings sticking out) of a B-36. As far as I know, it was never attempted.

Martin RB-57D - Being assembled in the Kettering Cold War Gallery - Contemporary of the U-2.

XC-99 - Many bits and pieces are at Wright-Pat with the major portion of the fuselage still at Kelly AFB (deactivated). Developed from the B-36 without the jet engines and with two full length decks.

Kawanishi N1K2-J Shiden (George) - The great Japanese fighter that never made it to full production (our good fortune) - Been at the museum for a long time; went to restoration about 3-4 years ago for some minor work, but major corrosion damage was found and it is still there.

American Helicopter XH-26 "Jet Jeep" - A small helicopter with rotor tip mounted ram jets for power. I understand that this was a very noisy little guy.

Martin Titan I - A Titan II is already on display

Boeing B-17F "Memphis Belle" - To be flown from Memphis to Wright-Pat before the end of the year (in pieces). This historical airplane is in need of a major restoration, plus many of the interior components are missing.

This isn't all, but it is a good list to start with.

From September to May, tours of the restoration shops and storage areas happen on the second Friday of the month. From June to August, the tour are every Friday. There are things in the storage area that you have either never heard of or didn't think still existed in any shape or condition.

You register in the morning and tour for 3 1/2 hours in the afternoon. It's cool to cold in the winter and warm to hot in the summer, so dress accordingly. No one under 12 is permitted on the tour and those between 12 and 17 must go with an adult. No big bags, including camera bags, are permitted.
Posts: 72
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 2:20 pm

RE: Restoration Projects

Fri Oct 29, 2004 11:36 am

Great news to hear that some great pieces of history like the XC-99 are going to be restored. Just for your information, FICON RF-84K's flew many times carried by a GRB-36D. In fact, rumors persist that the 99th Strategic Reconnaisance Wing actually flew missions using the RF-84K/GRB-36 combination over the Soviet Union before the U-2 was delivered. The Air Force has never admitted to this taking place, but you never know.

Convair modified 10 B-36's as GRB-36D's and 25 RF-84's as RF-84K's for the FICON program.

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