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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:04 pm 
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Thought these may inspire your crew. Great job.

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Douglas A-26A Invader under construction at the Tulsa Plant

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Douglas A-26C-30-DT 44-35281 "Iron Project" looks to be setting a compass.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:32 am 
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I'll bet JR would love to see this many people show up Saturday morning. I count 37


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:04 pm 
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Thanks Mark for these two photos. And YES, Frank, we would love to have this kind of manpower for our restoration efforts. The A26 is ongoing, but the DC3 and B25 are in for winter maintenance as well. The B25 is getting some repairs made plus an engine exchange. The DC3 is getting the instrument panel redone. This is taking some of our guys off the A26 for a bit to get the others going, but we sure don't need 3 airplanes down when they should be out flying! We are stretched a little thin as we have lost some guys to graduation and some from the AA layoffs who are moving to other areas. The core group is very dedicated though to getting the 26 finished and flying. It is just going to take more time than anybody anticipated. JR


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:15 pm 
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Today's efforts went well. The avionics wizards are still restoring the panel. I brought out some of the original style instruments for them to fit into the panel and check for functionality. The original electric attitude indicator requires a remote gyro feed so they will have to chase this down and see if it is still in the airplane. Hopefully it will be found in the avionics bay of the tail section. It had been replaced by a vac powered gyro along the way so it may prove to be what we have to stick with. All of the eyebrow lighting has been redone so these should look like new. JR


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:25 pm 
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When Rob Stuessy was here talking about the resurrection of K after the accident in Macon, GA, he mentioned that a few souvenirs were taken by persons unknown. Among them was the door off the aft compartment. Rob said they replaced this door with another A26 door and that answered our question of why it didn't quite fit right. Filipe is trimming and resizing it to fit properly as part of his project today. After listening to Rob, we are indeed, very fortunate that Rob gave Denny Lynch a good prognosis for the recovery of the airplane and worked so hard to save her. We are indebted to Denny for listening and trying to make her fly again. It is not often that a National Treasure is saved from the chopping block and furnances to be tragically made into pots, pans and coke cans! JR


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:28 pm 
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Now that the left main gear is about rigged, Miguel, the real JR and David A worked on rigging the gear doors. They are not ready to mount, but we need to get them all adjusted before covering the lightening holes and painting the inside. The other JR


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:38 pm 
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The right side gear is readied for paint so Big Mike, Denis and Mark spent most of the day with the prep and started spraying silver. The paint room was a little cool this morning so they placed electric heaters and lights in it to get it up to the right temp. This worked well. Big Mike will finish anything left over on Monday so we can start reassembly next weekend. The nose gear actuator was overhauled and also got paint today. The right wheel well just needs a little touch up and should be ready to paint when the temp is right. The nose wheel compartment will be next for the blaster, but our metal guys are still repairing some hidden damage between the compartment and the bomb bay that occurred during the gear collapse problems. There are some incredible pictures that Rob took when he was repairing the airplane in Macon in 78. I would not have believed they could have repaired it all and ferried it to Montana to finish the job. Man, are we lucky! JR


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 6:44 pm 
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Ray, one of our metal wizards, has produced some replacement parts for the structure supporting the area between the bomb bay and the nose wheel well. These are just some he has been duplicating. This area once held the bomb bay spoilers that were hydraulically actuated. They had been removed and the area covered over. Guess Denny and Rob did not plan to drop any bombs out of it so wouldn't be missed! They were only necessary if going greater than 240 mph so that the bombs would drop cleanly out instead of being forced back upwards by the airstream. That could ruin your whole day! :-) JR


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:54 pm 
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Big Mike wasn't kidding!! He started spraying silver on the right main gear parts today! Hope to have those finished by the weekend so the gear can be reassembled. We then have the wheel well to finish cleaning up now that it is stripped. After we get that painted pretty like the other side, we will all eat our Wheaties and try lifting the gear back up in place. Actually, we have a rig to do just that, but the gear still has to be lifted just a tad to fit into the cradle. Joy!! Back on 3 legs again. Although, I must say it takes getting used to the airplane being lower again and having to duck to go under it while working around it. Small price to pay I suppose! :-) JR, a proud resident of the Republic... the Lone Star Republic, that is! :-) Ya'll come see us!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:40 pm 
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A26 Special K wrote:
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Ray, one of our metal wizards, has produced some replacement parts for the structure supporting the area between the bomb bay and the nose wheel well. These are just some he has been duplicating. This area once held the bomb bay spoilers that were hydraulically actuated. They had been removed and the area covered over. Guess Denny and Rob did not plan to drop any bombs out of it so wouldn't be missed! They were only necessary if going greater than 240 mph so that the bombs would drop cleanly out instead of being forced back upwards by the airstream. That could ruin your whole day! :-) JR

Okay, dumb question time. Why can the original part not be reused? Aside from the the section that broke off nearest the camera, the part looks to be in relatively good condition. Obviously, it would need a sandblasting and repainting. I would think that any of the other damages could be repaired: the bent parts formed back into shape, the dents pounded out and the cracks welded back together. Even the missing section seems to me like it could be replaced with a new piece of metal.

Please note: I am not a mechanic, metalworker, or otherwise.

Not-so-dumb question #2: What do you guys do with the original parts - like the one above - that you end up not using?

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:43 am 
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Lets start with corrosion, then stress fractures. Just because it looks good to the naked eye does not mean it can be reused. A good example where NDT comes into play!
NDT= Non Destructive Testing

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Last edited by cooper9411 on Sat Feb 16, 2013 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:26 pm 
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Hopefully not to detract from your outstanding thread. May I add another photo of my favorite airplane and your favorite airplane with I'm sure several others favorite airplane between the two. The A-26 in the photo is rather a rare one indeed as I wasn't aware of too many Navy A-26's.

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F6F-5N Hellcat and an AD-5 (Tow) aircraft of VU-1 flying out of NAS Barber's Point, HI 1959, The aircraft was modified to an F6F-5K. It was lost January 26, 1960

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"Societies rise, prosper from the ethics of work, and from prosperity grow self-indulgent, and from self-indulgence and the failure of the ethics of hard work, fall. We are well into the self-indulgent state, and the fall is inevitable. Seems wrong, but the cycle is unfortunately normal and irreversible."


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 8:03 pm 
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Not-so-dumb question #2: What do you guys do with the original parts - like the one above - that you end up not using?

The originals... well, depends on what it is. These sheet metal parts will probably be flattened and cleaned up a bit, then some small section will be included in the frame for some of the Taichi prints of the airplane that we have that are autographed by some of the Nimrods. We are placing the first one in our GGA auction to be held at Meacham Field in Ft Worth on 2 March. See our FB page for some of the items. http://www.gga1.org
JR, Greatest Generation Aircraft Non Profit.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2013 8:16 pm 
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Thanks Mark, that is a great picture of the A-26 or JD-1 as the Navy called it. Later the Navy changed the designation to DB-26 later I think. Anyway, they did operate about 150 or so of them. Lots of target tugs, but this one appears to be a drone director with all the extra antennae on the roof and the nose mod as my best guess. I don't see the usual elevator and rudder protection for towing targets. There is a small connection to our K in that if you go look at the air museum in Palm Springs, there is a JD-1 or at least one painted to resemble one. It was Denny Lynch's airplane, one of two used in making the movie "Always". And of course, Denny also is the one who saved our K. We owe a great deal to Denny and Rob for taking care of this National Treasure. On another note, Arnold and I are going to make a run across the border into the Territory this weekend for an A26 ground school with some of our CAF brethren in Enid. I suppose it is about time to start thinking about training and flying the airplane! JR


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 11:16 am 
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Big Mike was busy yesterday and again today getting some of the landing gear parts painted silver. We are still hoping to see some assembly done on this over the weekend. This particular part is from the "beartrap" that holds the springs for tension in the downlock. Those two small holes side by side toward the top are where the springs go that were shown a few pages back. We think these springs should be changed out fairly frequently due to fatigue. They are compressed too much in the original spec and tend to fail. Well, there goes your downlock potentially. Anyway, the ROAD TRIP is on for Arnold and me. We are going to try to sneak across the Red River into the Territory without getting caught. The goal is to attend the CAF A-26 ground school in Enid tomorrow. Yeah, it is all about the stock airplane, but there are still a lot of similarities in systems like the hydraulic, electrical, flight controls, etc. We know the differences with our K so it will be great to visit with the guys who operate the stock airplanes and see what they like/dislike about the handling of the A-26. Can hardly wait... stay tuned for future reports. JR


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