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Classic Wings Magazine WWII Naval Aviation Research Pacific Warbird Digest
Final Cut-The Post War B-17 Flying Fortress and Survivors - 5th Edition


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 8:04 am 
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Alamogordo Airport/ALM – Alamogordo, New Mexico
Former Evergreen Tanker 142: P2V-5F Bu.128382/N203EV

Estrella Warbirds Museum – Paso Robles, California
Tanker 07: P2V-5 Bu.131424/N807NA

Glendive Airport/GDV – Glendive, Montana
Tanker 05: (P2V-5 Bu.131459/N96278

T61 Memorial & Klamath Falls Air Base – Lakeview, Oregon
Tanker 06: P2V-5 Bu.131445/N985FF

Yankee Air Museum – Ypsilanti, Michigan
Tanker 45: P2V-7 Bu.140443/N445NA

San Diego Air & Space Museum – San Diego California
Tanker 43: P2V-7 Bu.131424/N443NA

In an announcement on their Facebook page, Neptune Aviation stated that it… “plans to deliver the aircraft starting in the 3rd or 4th quarter of 2018, depending on the nature of the fire season in 2018. The aircraft will be for display purposes only. Neptune will keep Tanker 14 [Ed. P2V-5F Bu.131482/N410NA] & Tanker 44 [Ed. P2V-5 Bu.128422/N1386C] operational for air shows around the country.”


Neptune Aviation Service’s Lockheed P2V Neptune ‘Tanker 05’ drops fire retardant on the 2007 WSA Complex fire. This aircraft will be heading for display Glendive Airport in Glendive, Montana. (image via wikipedia)
Neptune Aviation Service’s P2Vs were the last of the type to remain in service as active firebombers, so this transfer of airframes will likely represent the last time that we may see these magnificent aircraft performing in anger. They have made way for the jet age at Neptune Aviation Services now, with the conversion of nine BAe 146 airliners into air attack configuration.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 8:37 am 
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seabee1526 wrote:
Alamogordo Airport/ALM – Alamogordo, New Mexico
Former Evergreen Tanker 142: P2V-5F Bu.128382/N203EV

Estrella Warbirds Museum – Paso Robles, California
Tanker 07: P2V-5 Bu.131424/N807NA

Glendive Airport/GDV – Glendive, Montana
Tanker 05: (P2V-5 Bu.131459/N96278

T61 Memorial & Klamath Falls Air Base – Lakeview, Oregon
Tanker 06: P2V-5 Bu.131445/N985FF

Yankee Air Museum – Ypsilanti, Michigan
Tanker 45: P2V-7 Bu.140443/N445NA

San Diego Air & Space Museum – San Diego California
Tanker 43: P2V-7 Bu.131424/N443NA

In an announcement on their Facebook page, Neptune Aviation stated that it… “plans to deliver the aircraft starting in the 3rd or 4th quarter of 2018, depending on the nature of the fire season in 2018. The aircraft will be for display purposes only. Neptune will keep Tanker 14 [Ed. P2V-5F Bu.131482/N410NA] & Tanker 44 [Ed. P2V-5 Bu.128422/N1386C] operational for air shows around the country.”


Neptune Aviation Service’s Lockheed P2V Neptune ‘Tanker 05’ drops fire retardant on the 2007 WSA Complex fire. This aircraft will be heading for display Glendive Airport in Glendive, Montana. (image via wikipedia)
Neptune Aviation Service’s P2Vs were the last of the type to remain in service as active firebombers, so this transfer of airframes will likely represent the last time that we may see these magnificent aircraft performing in anger. They have made way for the jet age at Neptune Aviation Services now, with the conversion of nine BAe 146 airliners into air attack configuration.


HMMM, twp kept airworthy by Neptune Aviation for airshows. That is interesting. I wonder if YAM will try to keep theirs flying as well.

Sean


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:05 am 
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martin_sam_2000 wrote:

HMMM, twp kept airworthy by Neptune Aviation for airshows. That is interesting. I wonder if YAM will try to keep theirs flying as well.

Sean


"The aircraft will be for display purposes only", so I don't think so.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:29 am 
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martin_sam_2000 wrote:
seabee1526 wrote:
Alamogordo Airport/ALM – Alamogordo, New Mexico
Former Evergreen Tanker 142: P2V-5F Bu.128382/N203EV

Estrella Warbirds Museum – Paso Robles, California
Tanker 07: P2V-5 Bu.131424/N807NA

Glendive Airport/GDV – Glendive, Montana
Tanker 05: (P2V-5 Bu.131459/N96278

T61 Memorial & Klamath Falls Air Base – Lakeview, Oregon
Tanker 06: P2V-5 Bu.131445/N985FF

Yankee Air Museum – Ypsilanti, Michigan
Tanker 45: P2V-7 Bu.140443/N445NA

San Diego Air & Space Museum – San Diego California
Tanker 43: P2V-7 Bu.131424/N443NA

In an announcement on their Facebook page, Neptune Aviation stated that it… “plans to deliver the aircraft starting in the 3rd or 4th quarter of 2018, depending on the nature of the fire season in 2018. The aircraft will be for display purposes only. Neptune will keep Tanker 14 [Ed. P2V-5F Bu.131482/N410NA] & Tanker 44 [Ed. P2V-5 Bu.128422/N1386C] operational for air shows around the country.”


Neptune Aviation Service’s Lockheed P2V Neptune ‘Tanker 05’ drops fire retardant on the 2007 WSA Complex fire. This aircraft will be heading for display Glendive Airport in Glendive, Montana. (image via wikipedia)
Neptune Aviation Service’s P2Vs were the last of the type to remain in service as active firebombers, so this transfer of airframes will likely represent the last time that we may see these magnificent aircraft performing in anger. They have made way for the jet age at Neptune Aviation Services now, with the conversion of nine BAe 146 airliners into air attack configuration.


HMMM, twp kept airworthy by Neptune Aviation for airshows. That is interesting. I wonder if YAM will try to keep theirs flying as well.

Sean


It'll certainly look nice next to the Privateer and the Warning Star.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:57 am 
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quemerford wrote:
martin_sam_2000 wrote:

HMMM, twp kept airworthy by Neptune Aviation for airshows. That is interesting. I wonder if YAM will try to keep theirs flying as well.

Sean


"The aircraft will be for display purposes only", so I don't think so.

Ahhhh, missed that part. Thanks for the correction.


Sean


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 10:36 am 
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Wow! I'm very happy to know that the Neptunes are not being scrapped. Static display is infinitely better than beer cans!

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Crew Chief, NAA F-86F Sabre 52-4689
Vintage Flying Museum
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 10:57 am 
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Minor tweak: N443NA is ex-145906, not 131424.

:)


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:34 am 
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Good news indeed.

I do note that for years there was a real a lack of preserved firebombers, that has changed recently, and some of these destinations having a solid firebomber base history. Coincidently I note that San Diego area does not have Navy spec P2V despite the areas long association with long range patrol aircraft. Wonder if the San Diego destined one or others will be backdated to Navy specifications? There are still other Neptune's kicking around, in the yards around AMARC for example. Just seems San Diego would be a perfect place for a Navy spec P2V.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:57 pm 
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It's really surprising to me that Neptune Aviation is going to keep two aircraft airworthy for airshows. That's awesome! I hope there's enough demand on the airshow circuit to support their continued operation. I honestly didn't think we'd ever have any Neptunes available for airshows. Just didn't seem feasible from a maintenance or demand standpoint. Great news!

It's also nice to see Yankee Air Museum continuing to acquire new aircraft. In the past couple years, they've added a Skyhawk, SBD, the WV-1 and now the Neptune. I hope they have enough indoor display space in the new hangar for everything.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 4:34 pm 
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Very cool that they're all going to good homes AND there'll be two for the airshow circuit. What a great idea. Bravo Neptune!

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"It's his plane, he spent the money to restore it, he can do with it what he wants. I will never understand what's hard to comprehend about this." - kalamazookid


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:24 pm 
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The MAAM hasn't flown its Neptune for some years, and the reason (as they told me during an interview for a Neptune article I've done for Aviation History Magazine, due out in the next issue) is that the fuel cost to fly it to and at air shows is so prohibitive that they can no longer afford it. And the reason they can't afford it is that the airplane is of virtually no interest to the typical air-show public. They'll pay to see P-51s and to ride in B-17s, but for most of them, the P2V is a "never heard of it" airplane. Those who think the Neptune is neater than tits will be outraged, but that's the truth: the reason the Neptune is of interest to those of us who are aviation historians is that it indeed is so forgotten, an immensely important airplane that did its duty all too quietly.

So I doubt that anybody else will be able to slot multiple Neptunes into the air-show circuit. If they try, they'll soon discover the sad truth, which will consist of the interest of a tiny group of 70=year-olds who served with the airplane, while the crowds stream past to see "the big bombers."


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:52 pm 
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Stephan, you are correct! Back when we (Mid Atlantic Air Museum) used to fly the Neptune to shows we would flight plan 450 gallons for the 1st hour of flight. This would include take off (on 2 recips AND the 2 jets) climb out and cruise for the initial 1st hour of flight. And that was just for the fuel. When you consider all of the other factors like engine oil, turbine oil, hydraulic oil, brakes, tires and the overall wear and tear on the aircraft, it is an expensive proposition to fly it. that is why it no longer flies. It is just to expensive to operate and there is no call for it to attend the airshows anymore. It's sad really, it was a great aircraft to fly in and take to shows!

Greg Witmer
Mid Atlantic Air Musum
WWII Weekend Airboss & Aircraft Coordinator

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2018 3:55 pm 
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I think there are 3 differences here with what Neptune is doing versus MAAM or any other museum operation -

1) The two planes will remain as fire bombers. This means they can be their own act, doing demo water drops at any airshow, including to help put out the grass fires the Blastards start with the Wall of Fire. ;) The other P2V's out there are all in military config, and that's where the "never heard of it" comes from. The P2Vs as fire bombers are actually pretty well known, especially in and West of the Rockies.

2) The company can "subsidize" the operation of the 2 Neptunes with its other operations. Museums either need really gracious donors, other "money making" aircraft, or good appearance agreements to be able to operate such a complex aircraft. We all know this is hard to do even with big crowd pleasers like the B-29s, so it's no suprise it's nearly impossible with a P2V.

3) Having 2 aircraft still in operational condition with current crews means that if there is a surge requirement during the season or when they have planes down for maintenance (or during the "off season") then they have aircraft they can quickly put on short term contract and get the job done.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:49 am 
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To further prove that the air show going public knows nothing about airplanes, I can't tell you how many times we've had the Harvard IV on display at an air show and people have asked me if it's a P-47. They constantly ask if the insignia (the Kiwi of the RNZAF) is from Australia.

I overheard one man at an air show pointing to a C-47 and telling his kid that it was a B-17 bomber. I was going to say something, but why bother?

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Crew Chief, NAA F-86F Sabre 52-4689
Vintage Flying Museum
Fort Worth, Republic of Texas

"The thing of it is, it is what it is." - some TV reporter talking about damage from Hurricane Irma


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:03 am 
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K5DH wrote:
To further prove that the air show going public knows nothing about airplanes, I can't tell you how many times we've had the Harvard IV on display at an air show and people have asked me if it's a P-47. They constantly ask if the insignia (the Kiwi of the RNZAF) is from Australia.

I overheard one man at an air show pointing to a C-47 and telling his kid that it was a B-17 bomber. I was going to say something, but why bother?


Those are some pretty extreme examples, but I once spent about 10mins at Geneseo convincing someone that our Mustang IV was not a Spitfire. Even though it had U.S. P-51's on either side to compare its shape to, it had to be a Spitfire because it had British markings.

It takes all kinds.


Sean


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