A Ride on Witchcraft

Discussion in 'Warbird Displays' started by T Bolt, Aug 14, 2013.

  1. T Bolt

    T Bolt Well-Known Member

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    #1 T Bolt, Aug 14, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
    A week and a half ago I had the experience of a life time taking a ride on the Collings Foundation's B-24J Witchcraft. My brother and I drove out to Kankakee IL through massive thunderstorms which fortunately cleared up just in time and it was a beautiful day. The B-17 Nine O Nine was also there along with The P-51C Betty Jane. We met Gary (Geedee) who was working on the B-24 as a crewcheif for a couple of weeks. He looked like he was having the time of his life flying around with these wonderful bombers.

    First off are some exterior shots of Witchcraft
    P1020291.JPG P1010857.JPG P1010933.JPG P1010935.JPG P1010975.JPG P1010998.JPG P1020001.JPG P1020279.JPG
     
  2. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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    Way too cool Glenn.

    Geo
     
  3. Catch22

    Catch22 Well-Known Member

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    Awesome Glenn, still haven't seen one of those flying.
     
  4. Aaron Brooks Wolters

    Aaron Brooks Wolters Well-Known Member

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    Way to go Glenn!!!:headbang: I think Gary is still suffering from withdrawls though.:lol:
     
  5. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Cool shots Glenn!
     
  6. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Great stuff Glenn - looking forward to the rest of the pics. Gary is now speaking in WW2 American, and muttering things about cylinder head temps and spark plugs .....
     
  7. Vic Balshaw

    Vic Balshaw Well-Known Member

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    Only way to go Glenn.
     
  8. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    I am so jealous!
     
  9. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Way to go!

    Glad you were able to make the trip to see them and great photos!
     
  10. T Bolt

    T Bolt Well-Known Member

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    I’ll post some more pictures tomorrow morning.

    Other that Diamond Lil, it’s the only one left flying, and Diamond Lil isn’t a true B-24, it’s a C-87 transport with passenger seats that’s had a bombers nose grafted on. (I sat on the floor of Witchcraft for take off and landing)

    I’m sure he is, I am, and I only went on the one flight:lol:

    Dave, if you wouldn’t have told me Gary was flying with them it would have been a he!! Of a surprise to bump into him!
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Well, I bet he was still surprised to see you, glad I was able to give you the headsup! :thumbleft:
     
  12. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    There is Nothing like a ride in a plane built to last only a few missions.

    What a rush? Where did you ride in the plane? Did you get to walk around during the flight? Huh, huh????
     
  13. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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  14. T Bolt

    T Bolt Well-Known Member

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    You had to strap down for takeoff and landing but other than that the only places out of bounds were the top and ball turrets (which I never could have fit in any way) and the cockpit, but you could be on the flight deck right behind the pilots. I started out buckled in on the floor with my back to the ball turret but there was too much weight in the rear (nose wheel popping up) so Gary had me and another guy go up forward and strap in on the floor behind the pilots (I'm good for nose weight anyway:lol:). Right after takeoff I headed down under the flight deck in the crawl space beside the nose gear and came out in the bombardier's position. What a view!! Norden bomb sight and everything. It looks like Witchcraft still has all the original military equipment. The back of the nose turret was open so I went in there for a wile, then made my way back under the flight deck and through the bomb bay to the waist where Gary and most of the other passengers were with the open waist windows. You could go back into the tail turret too, and it was cool seeing the fabric covered control surfaces move just inches from you on the other side of the turrets plexiglass. I'll tell you guys, it was a fantastic experience and I can sure understand if Gary is still walking around smiling after two weeks of it.
     
  15. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Out-standing!!!!!! Am happy for you to get the opportunity..... good-on-ya.
     
  16. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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    very cool Glenn
     
  17. T Bolt

    T Bolt Well-Known Member

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    #17 T Bolt, Aug 15, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
    Here's the promised pictures. I didn't take many shots during the flight taking mostly video with my camera so a lot of these shots are stills from that video. The guy in the black shirt is my brother, also a member here (HD-Soft Tail) although he doesn't post.
    Untitled14.jpg P1010814.JPG P1010819.JPG P1010820.JPG P1010821.JPG P1010822.JPG P1020252.JPG P1020255.JPG P1020258.JPG P1020259.JPG P1020260.JPG P1020261.JPG P1020263.JPG P1020265.JPG P1020266.JPG P1020267.JPG P1020269.JPG P1020275.JPG P1020305.JPG Untitled2.jpg Untitled3.jpg Untitled5.jpg Untitled6.jpg Untitled7.jpg Untitled8.jpg Untitled9.jpg Untitled10.jpg Untitled11.jpg Untitled12.jpg Untitled13.jpg
     
  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Great photos, you certainly had a great experience!

    I see Gary is wearing his GoPro and having way too much fun! :lol:

    I will say that I'm a little jealous, as I haven't had the chance to ride aboard the B-24 (ok, more than a little jealous) :D
     
  19. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, more than a little!
     
  20. s1chris

    s1chris Member

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    Wow, excellent pictures and how lucky.
    One thing i would like to know (a strange one). What did it smell like?
    Is there an oily fuely smell to this old birds?

    Cheers Chris
     
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