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Classic Wings Magazine WWII Naval Aviation Research Pacific Luftwaffe Resource Center
When Hollywood Ruled The Skies - Volumes 1 through 4 by Bruce Oriss


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 2:57 pm 
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Yes, this is fantastic! Thanks for the update. I will eagerly watch this project with exciting updates.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 28, 2015 8:54 pm 
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Testing fitting the new Station 6.0 webbing.

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PostPosted: Wed May 13, 2015 3:38 pm 
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Awesome thread Chris!

Exploring the possibility of those Ford wings is intriguing....

Just how far is this project planning on going? Keep moving forward till YAM has a complete static piece for the new building? 3D printing :)

Speaking of the new building...how is the re-construction of the bomber plant coming?


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PostPosted: Wed May 13, 2015 6:21 pm 
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The current plan is just to join the sections and to recreate the bottom turret opening. Currently the left side roof line is completed. The skin panels for the right window and roof are cleco in place. Once the roof and the right side window are completed, enough structure is there to remove the display frame cross member from the PB4Y-2 Station 6.2, and relocate to the B-24 section Station 6.0. We cannot begin the fabrication work in the turret well area without redistributing the load path on the display frame.

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PostPosted: Wed May 13, 2015 6:41 pm 
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The museum foundation recently created a new refreshed website. They are providing updates on the plant renovations and the future museum. Both organizations are hopeful to host a open house event soon.
http://michiganaerospace.org/construction-updates/

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 19, 2015 11:00 pm 
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Mid-June Update with new photos of the interior.

We are halfway completed with the roof skinning. Currently we are fabricating right hand former components under the window sill, known as Station 7.2. When the skinning is completed for the roof line and side panels, we can then remove the fuselage frame supports at PB4Y-2 bulkhead Station 6.2, and Ford B-24 bulkhead Station 6.1. Installation of new Station 6.1 bulkhead components can then occur, including the new bottom side longeron's at both sides of the turret well.

Because the tail section was involved in a serious accident with fire, and other factors, the shape of the section is out of alignment significantly. We would have to make a test gauge over the roof line of Station 7.3 to confirm the exact deviation. The upper side longeron's of the PB4Y-2 are misaligned at the factory, and are warped from the accident forward of Station 7.3. The positions of the longeron's are one of the reasons why the gun window positions are not equal.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:24 am 
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Very nice progress! I cant wait to see what she'll like in a year or two!

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2015 10:15 pm 
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The right hand side window is almost complete.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 9:40 pm 
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I stopped by the museum on my way out of the show last night because I wanted to see this project. You guys are doing a fine job and it's more impressive to see in person than the pictures show. Although you're not quite on the same scale because you're not building a whole aircraft (yet!), it reminded me of going through the Champaign Lady hangar.

Going back through the thread I see that you mentioned the plan was just to join these sections but I hope once that's done you will reconsider and keep moving forward with the fuselage and build/find a tail. Have you guys considered incorporating the fuselage and the cockpit on display next to it?

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 01, 2015 10:54 pm 
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WIXerGreg wrote:
I stopped by the museum on my way out of the show last night because I wanted to see this project. You guys are doing a fine job and it's more impressive to see in person than the pictures show. Although you're not quite on the same scale because you're not building a whole aircraft (yet!), it reminded me of going through the Champaign Lady hangar.

Going back through the thread I see that you mentioned the plan was just to join these sections but I hope once that's done you will reconsider and keep moving forward with the fuselage and build/find a tail. Have you guys considered incorporating the fuselage and the cockpit on display next to it?


No plans exist to extend or to have a complete fuselage for display. The cockpit is only an acquired mock-up, with an authentic Ford built pilots enclosure and two seats. It is not impossible to build a forward nose section from raw materials and drawings. Fabricating specific stampings would be challenging for bulkheads, but I would like to use the correct material thickness of 0.125" for the most visible stampings the public would observe. Fabricating the Zee stringers is quite difficult without a special metal brake or progressive rolling forming machine.

I do have thoughts and ideas for the Willow Run story and the B-24, but I would rather stay quiet for a while longer. My research work with the second half of persevered drawings would have to be conducted first.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2015 6:51 am 
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Thanks for the updates.

It would be cool to see the cockpit area added even if it lacks the nose.

I wonder if you could make it interactive, and have a wing section that people could buck rivets? Have the instructor be a "Rosie". Maybe only on Saturdays to keep it manageable.

My son did it at Kidventure, and ever since, says he wants to work on airplanes when he grows up.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 06, 2015 5:08 pm 
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Microfilm Drawings Update:
About a month ago the microfilm set number 2 arrived to complete the AAF/NASM collection of microfilm EDM sets 43, 44, and 45. It is a disappointing to have two thirds of the graphical representation of the center wing front spar missing. Drawing GK32W1010 is four sheets of roll drawings. The first sheet and last sheet were archived, but not two and three. The first sheet is the outer wing panel splice to just pass of Engine #1. The fourth sheet is the Bill of Materials. Parts drawings were created, so with Consolidated drawings 32W010 and 32W1010, the rest of the spar assembly drawings can be recreated.

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In the future I may visit the Henry Ford research library to see what else can be found.

B-24 Display Update:
The crews have begun work on fabricating on the interim or permanent Station 6.1 bulkhead. New parts for the side panels are being fabricated.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2015 4:10 pm 
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Woohoo! Cant get enough updates!

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:31 pm 
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Last progress update for the year with the display project, I'll have more on the drawings later.

We have completed the stringer layout to Station 6.0 from the PB4Y-2 bottom section. The placement of stringers on the PB4Y-2 is different from the B-24, not just the turret area. In the future the turret well and surrounding structure can be fabricated and installed. With luck, the upper longeron's for the ERCO turrets matched the contour close enough, if not exact, for the lower longeron's.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2015 12:54 am 
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Recently I've completed 99% of the validation and revisions for the E-M fuselage contour of YAM-GK32B1003. I do not believe any work is required for the N model, as the data is likely correct. When the opportunity once again rises, it will be used as originally intended for any disassembly/transportation fixture development.

The future list of items to study is all the longeron drawings, and to pin point where all the parts are located. Current study has noted differing dimensions on detailed part drawings at Station 5.0 and aft. Some numbers are close but are within one or two inches on the fuselage contour line.

A new Inventor sketch of GK32B1003 was created after finishing up on GK32B1003. It will be used for future design efforts and checking microfilm drawings that can't be done with 2D sketching.

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Closer detailed view of Station 5.0 and forward. Easily identifiable by the double row of red points. Station 6.0 is the last set of red points on the right, as the rear bomb bay bulkhead. Just aft of Station 5.0 is Station 5.1, the rear wing spar bulkhead. The next row of red points in front of Station 5.0 is Station 4.1, the front wing spark bulkhead. In front of the front wing spar is forward bulkhead of the bomb bay at Station 4.0

Design work has started on Item #72, can't guess what this is? :wink:
http://i.imgur.com/cwF8Jw1.jpg

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Last edited by ChrisAldridge on Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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