Both pictures show a pair of Grumman F6F Hellcats with red-outlined star-and-bar insignia and lacking any visible unit markings. The aircraft appear to be in new condition - perhaps the photographs have been taking during manufaturer's trials.
The high-octane fuel used by the US Navy caused the excessive burn damage and stains to the paint, as can be clearly seen behind the exhaust stacks of the nearest aircraft.
Don McIntyre wrote:
Following Don's advice, I decided that both photos
that I originally retrieved were reversed, the F6F-3 pitot tube was located under the
right wing. I flipped the pictures, but as you can see, there´s no other way of telling
which orientation is right!
These two photographs depict a number of early P-51A Mustang Mk Is outside of North American factory at Inglewood. The aircraft wear a factory-fresh finish. They were apparently produced for RAF and wear a standard British camouflage. The colors used are American counterparts for British Dark Green, Dark Earth and Sky.
Of interest is that the exhaust stain is already clearly noticeable on the nearest aircraft. Propeller blades are black with yellow tips. It is also clearly visible that the nearest Mustang has it's spinner painted in US Olive Drab (which would be hard to see on a black-and-white photograph), but the one on the machine further further back seems to be painted in a darker color.
The aircraft at the far left has an interesting set of markings, combining an American star on the fuselage with RAF fin flash. This indicates that the aircraft presented on the picture are being diverted to USAAF from planned RAF delivery, and allows us to date this photograph to 1942. October 1942 as stated by the original caption of the lower photo. Bingo!
This photo shows a prototype Curtiss XSB2C Helldiver. The aircraft differs in many areas from the later production examples of this dive bomber - the cowling, canopy and fin shape are all different.
The aircraft carries a colorful US Navy peacetime finish, which indicates that the photo had been taken before the USA joined the war, probably some time during 1940. The wings of the aircraft are painted Glossy Orange Yellow (FS 13538), the fuselage is probably painted in silver dope rather than left natural metal, as the sheen of the finish is really too matt for the bare metal. This is futrher confirmed by the fabric-covered rudder, as this was most certainly painted in silver, and there doesnt' seem to by any tonal difference in color between the rudder and the fin.
The horizonatal tail surfaces are painted in glossy black. The spinner also appears to be in dark color, maybe the same black, look and judge for yourself! Undoubtedly black is also a wing-walk area at the wing root. These black wing-walks and yelow-painted wings were typical for many pre-war Navy aircraft.
The blak inscription US NAVY appears at the rear of the fuselage. There is also a small stencil on the top part of the fin/rudder, which might be a serial number of the aircraft.
The national markings are typical for the pre-war period US aircraft, consisting of a white star in blue circle with an additional red dot in the middle.
Tom Gourlie added:
This cannon-armed early Mustang is seen here in October 1942 on the factory trial flight near Inglewood, California. The photographer was Alfred T. Palmer.
Curiously, the original caption says: "P-51 Mustang fighter in flight, Inglewood, Calif. The "Mustang", built by North American Aviation, Incorporated, is the only American-built fighter used by the Royal Air Force of Great Britain."
Is this an RAF Mustang? Doubtful. Can somebody help to identify the exact subtype and it's destination? And how about the camouflage color - is it Olive Drab?
Bruce Archer (Southern New Jersey Scale
All I could determine is that this is an SBD Dauntless. In Army colors? Help!
Frank Goodridge answered:
Martin Waligorski wondered:
Jeff Garbutt added:
"Sven" Svendsen responded:
And finally, the individual aircraft code is the
type used by USN VS units. Unfortunately, the squadron number is masked by the wing tip,
but the format of X-S-12 is unmistakable - denoting the 12th aircraft
Lynn Ritger added:
I must also admit that I'm not an expert on US Navy aircraft. This is an F4U-1 with later, bulged canopy, but I didn't know they could carry bombs... and, any comments about the camouflage scheme? Also, what is the time and place?
Bruce Archer (Southern New Jersey Scale
An early Republic Thunderbolt, probably a P-47C, somewhere in England. Tell us more! When and where was the picture taken? Who is the pilot? Anything interesting about the paint scheme? Why is the cowling white? Any comments about the B-17 in the background?
Notes by Jeff Harrison:
Little can be seen of the B-17 in the background. It is probably an F (the standard model in service at the time this picture was probably taken) and is camouflaged in the standard Olive Drab over Neutral Gray scheme with Medium Green blotches to break up the outline of the fin, wings and stabilizers. The serial number is yellow and aside from that there is little else to be told from this picture.
Steve Collins added:
Additions by Chuck Rau:
Type 2 Cocarde was issued 15-May-1942 which ordered the red circle removed to avoid confusion with the Japanese meatball.
Type 2a (as I call it) was issued on 01-Oct-1942 when a yellow surround was added to the outside of the blue circle. On British aircraft used by the Americans, the yellow outside ring of RAF insignia was left during overpainting.
The photo shows the P-47's insignia to be of Type 2. It does not appear that squadron markings are present yet, the horizontal stabilizer appears to show a white stripe, as does the space between the pitot tube and the vertical stabilizer, which would go along with the cowling paint job as the early 8th AF fighter theater markings. The first P-47D (serial number 42-22250) rolled off the assembly line from the new Evansville, Indiana plant September of 1942, and it did not replace the -C model on the line at Farmingdale until February 1943, so this fighter must be a P-47C.
The B-17 is definitely not a -G
model. You would see part of the chin turret from this angle. Look
close at the top turret. It shows that it is the older Bendix
electrically-powered turret. This was used on all -Es and early -Fs. The
first B-17F (41-24340) flew on May 30, 1942. Studying the photo the
With these details, that would put
the photo sometime around July of 1942 and in England.
An action-packed scene from a flight deck, an F6F Hellcat has it's wings folded out prior to take-off. Extra fuel tank is barely visible under the fuselage for a long-range mission.
I could not determine the ship, the unit or the time frame when the photo was taken. Perhaps somebody will help? Also, which F6F version is this one?
Loukas Papadimitriou wrote:
Notes by Paul Fontenoy:
Norm Filer added:
Everything appears to match right down to the Pea Green spinner. Only thing not present is the small tophat insignia under the right side of the windscreen. This could be there but just not visible.
Please help to identify the unit which this P-51D belonged, and perhaps the pilot. Also, when was the picture taken?
Jeff Harrison commented:
Steve Collins responded:
Please help to identify the unit which this P-51D belonged, and perhaps the serial number. Also, where and when was this photo taken?
Lynn Ritger wrote:
A North American P-51B in low-level flight over England. This aircraft was equipped with Malcolm style canopy. Also, where and when was this photo taken? Which unit? Who flew the aircraft?
Norm Filer responded:
Again, due to high contrast is difficult to see the ten kills under the canopy. Also is just possible to see the darker Olive Drab on the top of the wings and fuselage where the invasion stripes have been painted over. When the first of the unpainted Mustangs started arriving in England, some of the fighter wings felt they were too visible, especially when mixed in with Olive Drab/Gray birds. As a result some had the upper surfaces overpainted. This is a good example of that.
Photo credit: Totavia Adrian Cybriwsky aviation image archives
Anybody knows more about this particular ship, or the unit it belonged to?
Jeff Harrison wrote:
J Ponder wrote:
The picture is believed to be taken during the ending war period.
Anybody knows more about this particular ship, or the unit it belonged to? Also, any comments about the camouflage colors seen here?
Jeff Harrison wrote:
Don Kaiser wrote: