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Warbird Icons (5)

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Meet the Warbirds - Series

B17 G - ‘Pink Lady’

Pink Lady is unique in that she is the only surviving B17 to have seen operational service in Europe during WW2. Assigned to the 511th Bomb Squadron at RAF Polebroook on 1st March 1945 she flew six missions to Germany before European combat operations ended in May 1945.

Over 12,000 B17s were manufactured with the majority sent to England for service with the ‘Mighty 8th’ starting in late 1942. Perhaps the word ‘sent’ - above - needs a little explanation. B17 crews were formed by rota from the latest bunch of trainees and their first sortie, as a crew, was to take a B17 from the East coast of America to the UK - arriving at Prestwick. A tremendous feat considering that transatlantic crossings prior to that time were so very few in number. The B17 wrecks scattered all over Ayrshire and Arran bear sad testimony to the cost of such a pioneering endeavour.

The original B17 design concept of daylight survivability in bombing missions without fighter escort proved invalid (at the cost of many of the original B17 crews) - even with up to 13 0.5” machine guns mounted all around the aircraft. Such weight of defensive armament severely restricted the available bomb load, even for mid range missions, to just 6,000lbs.

Note the somewhat elderly bombardier/nose gunner in the photograph. I have applied for his ’seat’ for next year!!

Title:Warbird Icons (5)
Username:patspeirs patspeirs
Uploaded:30 Apr 2010 - 9:43 AM
Tags:Aircrfat, B17, Digital art, Ww2
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Votes:31

Comments

Imagephotographics

What a great shot Pat - well done !

Chris

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viscostatic
30 Apr 2010 - 9:58 AM

A great photo and once again information that I wasn't previously aware of. Thank you.

Phil.

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DOGSBODY
DOGSBODY  61432 forum posts England30 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 10:01 AM

An informative write up and an interesting image. Andy

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SteveMoulding
SteveMoulding e2 Member 5SteveMoulding vcard United Kingdom7 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 10:26 AM

One of my favourite aircraft, the mighty Flying Fortress. Great close-up of this wonderful example. I read with interest your narrative, but to my knowlegde I thought there were several surviving examples still flying, not necessary in the UK. The genuine 'Memphis Belle' for one but my knowledge is sketchy and I could be mistaken.
Steve.

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RonnieAG
RonnieAG e2 Member 5143 forum postsRonnieAG vcard Scotland112 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 10:46 AM

What a marvellous image, Pat, and with its customary excellent narrative. I did know a bit about the B17s but your info. re the wrecks over the west coast is totally new to me and so sad to hear about.
I just wish you could publish all this material in book form - I'd be at the head of the queue!
Please accept my UA for both image and narrative.
Regards, Ronnie.

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wideangler
30 Apr 2010 - 10:47 AM

As always, great picture and great write up.

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patspeirs
patspeirs  7 Scotland
30 Apr 2010 - 11:13 AM

Thanks Steve - the survivors list stands at 48 intact, 13 operational (2 in UK) rest in US with a further 9 under active restoration - all it takes is money, quite a lot of it!! Thanks for your interest and comment, much appreciated.
Ronnie - book under active consideration by Duncan (V8dunc) and myself - will get there someday. Many thanks for your input and the UA, really appreciated.

Pat

Last Modified By patspeirs at 30 Apr 2010 - 11:15 AM

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Oliverpants
Oliverpants e2 Member 5Oliverpants vcard England2 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 4:45 PM

This is fabulous, and the info too. Is that a doll in the gunners pit with the elderly man? Ann

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patspeirs
patspeirs  7 Scotland
30 Apr 2010 - 5:19 PM

Ann - see what you mean, he is wearing short sleeve shirt and the forearm looks like a small figure - dressed like that and no belt or helmet, there aren't many basic flying regs that he isn't breaking. Still want his seat!!
Pat

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Shroomer
Shroomer  7 England167 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 7:15 PM


Quote: Ann - see what you mean, he is wearing short sleeve shirt and the forearm looks like a small figure - dressed like that and no belt or helmet, there aren't many basic flying regs that he isn't breaking. Still want his seat!!
Pat

A much better view than out of a Canberra Pat, you'd need dark glasses on with all that light.
Cracking close up and detail and as always a superb narrative.
Richard

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rockfish
rockfish  5 United Kingdom
30 Apr 2010 - 7:48 PM

Great stuff again Pat. A crackin image and excellent info. I really enjoyed this.
Peter

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patspeirs
patspeirs  7 Scotland
30 Apr 2010 - 8:04 PM

Thanks Richard - the old prone couch inthe '8 nose was the best 'seat' in the world AND you got paid for it. Great until you reach about 28 and common-sense kicks in! Thanks for the input and comment, all much appreciated.
Pat

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astyag
astyag  712 Constructive Critique Points
30 Apr 2010 - 8:57 PM

What an astonishing information, to you it might sound funny though, my only approach to B17 was while I was playing Battlefield 1942 and I found them very realistic I must say. I did read about them in many books and researched about them on Google. I must say though, your infos are thorough and informative of them all. Very well done and I admire your hobby and style of photographing WWII airplanes... well done and a lovely PF
Astyag

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patspeirs
patspeirs  7 Scotland
30 Apr 2010 - 10:27 PM

Thanks Astyag, much appreciated. Must have a look at Battlefield 1942 - new one on me.
Pat

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bromley-smith
30 Apr 2010 - 11:46 PM

Excellent image again Pat, never get tired of these. Congratulations on your award. I'm with Ronnie to buy book two, signed of course.
Tony

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raygregson
raygregson e2 Member 6raygregson vcard United Kingdom
1 May 2010 - 11:12 AM

another cracker pat,well done.ray

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UBOAT
UBOAT  741 forum posts Scotland
1 May 2010 - 6:11 PM

Another great close up grampa, looks great and like the lok of the nose gunner.

connor

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Rock
Rock e2 Member 12Rock vcard England2 Constructive Critique Points
1 May 2010 - 6:21 PM

Top-work.

Rock

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harrattp
harrattp  7 England4 Constructive Critique Points
1 May 2010 - 7:13 PM

A tremendous shot and a great narrative to boot.

Paul

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RTR
RTR  5 United Kingdom7 Constructive Critique Points
2 May 2010 - 9:52 PM

Nice meaty close up zoom shot with great prop blur. Sadly she wont be flying anymore I read recently. Rich.

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patspeirs
patspeirs  7 Scotland
2 May 2010 - 10:30 PM

Rich ........ understand that ever increasing insurance levels have caused her to be put in storage - seems to be a universal problem. Believe the Canadian Lanc has similar funding difficulties. What the Luftwaffe couldn't hack the bankers have seen off!!
Thanks for your input, much appreciated.
Pat

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metro074
metro074 e2 Member 5metro074 vcard Australia8 Constructive Critique Points
10 May 2010 - 4:02 AM

My absolute pleasure to 30 click Wink
Carol

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