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PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2014 4:35 pm 
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I have decided to pick up on the research of two B-29 (modified to TB-29's after the war) tail sections that I have in my collection. I am looking for data from anyone who is willing to climb into the rear of a B-29 for me :)

Data that I currently have on my B-29 tails:
I have an unpainted TB-29 tail that came out of China Lake. Above the pressure door, as you enter the tail gunner compartment, on the frame, it is marked: ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998
Pictured here: http://www.questmasters.us/B-29_SUPERFORTRESS_2.html

I asked the guys at the New England Air Museum to look in their B-29 painted as "Jacks Hack". B-29A-55-BN 44-61975 has the tail of B-29A-45-BN 44-61739. This is a Boeing built aircraft. The frame above the pressure door is marked: ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528.

I have a black painted TB-29 tail that came out of China Lake. On the lower left, facing the pressure door, is a small data plate. The tails of Martin built B-29s were built by Hudson. The data plate is marked: AIRPLANE MOD. B-29, DWG. OR PART NO. 3-14335-14, CONTR. NO. W33-038-AC-117, SER. NO. 377
Pictured here: http://www.questmasters.us/B-29_SUPERFORTRESS_1.html

I asked the guys at the National Museum of the United States Air Force to look in the rear of B-29-36-MO 44-27297 "Bockscar". Her Hudson data plate is marked: AIRPLANE MOD. B-29, DWG. OR PART NO. 3-14335-14,
CONTR. NO. W33-038-AC-117, SER. NO. 239

What I need and where to look:
Any surviving B-29s. In the tail, above the pressure door, facing rearward, there should be stamping on the frame. What does it say? Another location is just below the pressure door, facing rearward, on the left should be a data plate.

I already contacted the Smithsonian NASM IRT the Enola Gay and they do not want to climb into the tail while she is elevated.

Thanks for your help WIXers! :drink3:

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2014 9:57 am 
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I want to throw a theory at you guys and gals. Was thinking about this all day and night last night. The unpainted B-29 tail, in the collection, is marked (above the pressure door, to the tail gunner compartment) ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, which breaks down to Assembly Part Number 3-14335 Drawing Revision -13, Unit 998.

If written in linear part numbers with revisions:
ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, unknown Boeing Craft Number. Found on unpainted B-29 tail from China Lake.
ASSY 3-14335-14 unknown UNIT #'s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-15 unknown UNIT #’s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528, Craft Number 11216, B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 (currently attached to “Jacks Hack” New England Air Museum B-29A-55-BN 44-61975)

If I assume at ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 999 they started over again with a number sequence of UNIT 1 (knowing that B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 had a tail part number ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528), that would be a total of 529 aircraft produced between the two tail units. Subtract 529 from Boeing Craft Number 11216 (B-29A-45-BN 44-61739) and that is Boeing Craft Number 10687 B-29-65-BW 44-69855.

Boeing B-29-65-BW 44-69855 Craft Number 10687 shows up as having being disposed of at China Lake on their registry!

I need more data to support this finding. I need more ASSY #s from known B-29s in museums.

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2014 5:45 pm 
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You could try Tinker AFB in Oklahoma City. They have a B-29 outside the main gate entrance.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2014 5:40 pm 
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Quest Master wrote:
I want to throw a theory at you guys and gals. Was thinking about this all day and night last night. The unpainted B-29 tail, in the collection, is marked (above the pressure door, to the tail gunner compartment) ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, which breaks down to Assembly Part Number 3-14335 Drawing Revision -13, Unit 998.

If written in linear part numbers with revisions:
ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, unknown Boeing Craft Number. Found on unpainted B-29 tail from China Lake.
ASSY 3-14335-14 unknown UNIT #'s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-15 unknown UNIT #’s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528, Craft Number 11216, B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 (currently attached to “Jacks Hack” New England Air Museum B-29A-55-BN 44-61975)

If I assume at ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 999 they started over again with a number sequence of UNIT 1 (knowing that B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 had a tail part number ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528), that would be a total of 529 aircraft produced between the two tail units. Subtract 529 from Boeing Craft Number 11216 (B-29A-45-BN 44-61739) and that is Boeing Craft Number 10687 B-29-65-BW 44-69855.

Boeing B-29-65-BW 44-69855 Craft Number 10687 shows up as having being disposed of at China Lake on their registry!

I need more data to support this finding. I need more ASSY #s from known B-29s in museums.

Cogs in the wheels to deal with- Any parts that failed insp or damaged in transit would not be installed and mess up sequences.
Also, how many were in contracts? i.e. 42-43200 - 44200, 44675-45015, ext. Sometimes contract blocks jump around as blocks get assigned to various different types so linear progression has to be computed. 1000 in 1st group, 350 in the 2nd. I had to do the jump and add on some P-51 S/N calculating in the past.
Good luck and hope you find some answers.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 22, 2014 11:55 am 
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An easier way to look at the physical production aspect is not the contract number or the aircraft serial number but rather the Craft Number or C/N.
This is a really great page that shows Boeing C/N's as a sequence for production, with the contract block and aircraft serial numbers, which do skip around. The Craft Number is in sequence of linear production:
http://www.abcdlist.nl/boeing_seattle_02.html
The Craft Numbers are in sequence. So, when it comes to my unpainted tail with a known Assembly Part Number and Unit Number compared to another known Boeing B-29 with a Assembly Part Number and Unit Number, with simple subtraction, I came up with the serial number of B-29-65-BW 44-69855. There were only certain B-29 that ended up at China Lake, the fact that B-29-65-BW 44-69855 is on the list of having been there, the CSI mathematical process applied above seems to work....but I need other examples of known B-29s Assembly Part Number and Unit Number to prove the theory correct.

This website shows the following information for B-29-65-BW 44-69855:
http://www.goodall.com.au/warbirds-dire ... boeing.pdf
"C/N 10687 B-29 44-69855 NAS China Lake CA: target use, open storage 56/75 SB-29 Anthony Mazzolini/US Aviation Museum, Inyokern CA: nose section & tail only, recov. 99/03"

Still need more data! Anyone want to crawl inside of B-29s near you to find these markings? :)

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 8:47 am 
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At the risk of asking the obvious, why do you need this data?

If you're trying to identify the aircraft these sections came from, there are easier ways to do it. I can help, but I need to know what you require first - are you researching the factory markings or do you want to know the aircraft your tail sections came from?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 1:28 pm 
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I'll take any way! :) Easy or hard....but prefer easy.
I want to know the exact B-29 that these aircraft came from so I can trace and research their WWII and post-war history.
I have two B-29 tails:
The first tail I believe is from a Boeing produced B-29. It is an unpainted TB-29 tail that came out of China Lake. Above the pressure door, as you enter the tail gunner compartment, on the frame, it is marked: ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998
Pictured here: http://www.questmasters.us/B-29_SUPERFORTRESS_2.html

The second tail was produced by Hudson from a Martin B-29. It is a black painted TB-29 tail that also came out of China Lake. On the lower left, facing the pressure door, is a small data plate. The tails of Martin built B-29s were built by Hudson. The data plate is marked: AIRPLANE MOD. B-29, DWG. OR PART NO. 3-14335-14, CONTR. NO. W33-038-AC-117, SER. NO. 377 and Pictured here: http://www.questmasters.us/B-29_SUPERFORTRESS_1.html

From the China Lake Alumni website, you can see only a handful of TB-29 converted B-29s in their pictures. I have them listed on each of the websites above, but on the master list of B-29's in their registry, they do not specify the modification to TB-29, so their may be others to be considered.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!! :)

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 1:57 pm 
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Location: Somewhere South of New Jersey...
You need a list of B-29 tail numbers that were transferred to the Navy at China Lake. The Air Force Historical Research Agency might...might have this in their files at Maxwell. Neat search...good luck!

http://www.afhra.af.mil/

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:04 pm 
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APG85,
That data is already available, that is how I cam to my conclusion above (scroll down to the B-29 section):
http://www.chinalakealumni.org/Aircraft.htm
What I am looking for is additional "proof" from other aircraft to validate my theory on the "UNIT" number found stamped in the tail of Boeing produced B-29s. With that detail, I can prove my theory. I already have one piece of data from the New England Air Museum, what I need is data from other Boeing B-29s that still exist.

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 10:53 pm 
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Location: Travis AFB
From Travis AFB Heritage Center Museum with our B-29 that came from China Lake. OK I checked our B-29 today. I climbed into the back and searched for any numbers and or data plate. None found. I have also thoroughly searched the cockpit section too for any data plates- none found. You are welcome to make a visit and have a look for yourself. Any more suggestions as to exactly where to look?
DaveT


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 23, 2014 11:26 pm 
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I crawled into NEAM's B-29 "Jack's Hack" today and only found this - Kilroy was here... :P

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2014 3:35 am 
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Well my photo record of CL B-29s turned up zilch, so apologies for the false start. There was a black-painted tail out on the ranges in the mid-80's which I thought had to match yours, but looking at my photos, it's obvious that the damaged tail area doesn't match yours.

However, if you for sure do have two TB-29 tails, then Verver's list is a good start. Then you can obviously delete the TB's which are known elsewhere.

From what's left, I'd go to AFHRA and get the relevant AC, ACA and ACR microfilms and find out which of those birds were converted to TB's. That then gives you a starting point with which to further narrow down the search (which CL B-29s were/were not black, for instance).

I've done much the same thing with other '50s types, and though it can be a long process, it's also VERY rewarding to do a real bit of old-school sleuthing.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2014 10:42 am 
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Ok....this is where I need folks to look. If it is a Martin built B-29 with a Hudson tail, there should be a data plate where the lower (horizontal) arrow is pointing. If it is a Boeing built B-29 there should be an ASSY and UNIT number stamped on the bulkhead above the pressure door where the upper arrow (vertical) is pointing.
Image

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 2:22 pm 
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Still need more data from existing Boeing built B-29s, but.....I did little more data and number crunching, with new information found. I truly feel that the UNIT NUMBER stamped in the tail, above the pressure door entering the gunner compartment, of Boeing built B-29s does correspond to the Boeing production Craft Number (C/N).

Known data:
ASSY 3-14335-? UNIT 335, Craft Number 4452, B-29-50-BW 42-24791 “Big Time Operator” Tail owned by Nick Veronico.
ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, unknown Boeing Craft Number. Found on unpainted TB-29 tail from China Lake owned by QuestMasters. ***Currently believed to be Craft Number 10687 B-29-65-BW 44-69855***
ASSY 3-14335-14 unknown UNIT #'s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-15 unknown UNIT #’s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528, Craft Number 11216, B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 (currently attached to “Jacks Hack” New England Air Museum B-29A-55-BN 44-61975)

Taigh Ramey owns B-29 tail with UNIT 142. No Assy revision number or aircraft number at this time.

Mathematical process for speculation, based on the UNIT number of 335 found on Craft Number 4452, B-29-50-BW 42-24791 “Big Time Operator” Tail and counting forward into production (*NOTE, craft numbers are sequential, but B-17 production was also going on so those numbers are skipped):
C/N 4452 (B-29-50-BW 42-24791) to C/N 4580 (B-29-50-BW 42-24919) = 128 Aircraft
C/N 7231 (B-29A-1-BN 42-93824) to C/N 7530 (B-29A-30-BN 42-94123) = 299 Aircraft
C/N 10487 (B-29-55-BW 44-69655) to C/N 10687 (B-29-65-BW 44-69855) = 200 Aircraft
335+128+299+200 = 962 (962 is only 30 numbers from the number found in the unpainted tail UNIT 998).

And working backward, in production, from the known unit number: UNIT 528, Craft Number 11216, B-29A-45-BN 44-61739:
C/N 10687 (B-29-65-BW 44-69855) to C/N 11216 (B-29A-45-BN 44-61739) = 529
Again, speculating that at ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 999 they started over again with a number sequence of UNIT 1 (knowing that B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 had a tail part number ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528), that would be a total of 529 aircraft produced between the two tail units. Subtract 529 from Boeing Craft Number 11216 (B-29A-45-BN 44-61739) and that is Boeing Craft Number 10687 B-29-65-BW 44-69855.

This data is applied to the known serial numbers of B-29s at China Lake to narrow this down to possible candidates:
http://www.chinalakealumni.org/Aircraft-B.htm
Boeing B-29-65-BW 44-69855 Craft Number 10687 shows up as having being disposed of at China Lake on their registry. The only other B-29's disposed of with close serial numbers are: B-29A-60-BW 44-69729 "T Square 54" with is at the Seattle Museum of Flight and B-29-70-BW 44-69957 which remains at Airport Lake, China Lake, CA.

I still need more data to support these findings but at this time, I 100% believe that the Boeing tail UNIT NUMBER corresponds to the production craft number.

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:43 pm 
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Update with info from Taigh Ramey's B-29 tail! Please keep the data coming!

Known data:
ASSY 3-14335-? UNIT 335, Craft Number 4452, B-29-50-BW 42-24791 “Big Time Operator” Tail owned by Nick Veronico.
ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 998, unknown Boeing Craft Number. Found on unpainted TB-29 tail from China Lake owned by QuestMasters. ***Currently believed to be Craft Number 10687 B-29-65-BW 44-69855***
ASSY 3-14335-13 UNIT 142, unknown Boeing Craft Number and AAF Serial Number at this time. Owned by Taigh Ramey.
ASSY 3-14335-14 unknown UNIT #'s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-15 unknown UNIT #’s (if this revision was actually put into production)
ASSY 3-14335-16 UNIT 528, Craft Number 11216, B-29A-45-BN 44-61739 (currently attached to “Jacks Hack” New England Air Museum B-29A-55-BN 44-61975)

_________________
Thanks,
Van
Kosovo, Afghanistan (x2) and Iraq Campaign Veteran
B-29 42-24791 "Big Time Operator"
C-47A 43-15137 "7H" Normandy/Holland Vet
SNJ-5B S/N 84947
UC-45F 43-35764 Cockpit
PT-26A 42-71104
LNE-1 S/N 31556
CG-15A Cockpit
CG-4A Cockpit (x2) and fuselage
Follow QuestMasters on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/QuestMastersMuseum
Museum collection homepage: http://www.questmasters.us


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