Glacier Girl

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by ccheese, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    A week ago, you may recall, Glacier Girl, a World War II P-38 fighter lovingly restored to airworthiness after 50 years buried in ice in Greenland, took off from New Jersey in the hope of finally finishing the plane’s interrupted 1942 mission to reach Britain.

    Well, the first few legs of the trip went well enough, though there were delays to wait out bad weather and to obtain a replacement part for Glacier Girl’s companion, a P-51 Mustang named Miss Velma. But when it came time to fly from Goose Bay, Labrador, to — aaah — Greenland, the P-38 balked: soon after takeoff, coolant started squirting out of a relief valve on one of its two engines.

    Understandably not wanting the plane to wind up on the ice again, or worse, in the drink, the pilots turned back to Goose Bay and rolled it into a hangar. They’ve concluded that a whole new engine is needed, and wouldn’t you know it, the plane’s out of warranty, so it will be laid up for a while. The Mustang is continuing on alone, and got over the Greenland hurdle safely to land in Reykjavik.

    This was copied from an article in the NY Times.

    The latest issue of Warbirds International also has a short article about
    the aborted flight. Steve Hinton is piloting Glacier Girl, and the damaged
    engine is the starboard (right).

    Charles
     
  2. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    It's a real shame that Glacier Girl didn't make it...again. I was fortunate to get a chance to photograph Glacier Girl alone and with other P-38s at Chino this year. It was quite something to see a P-38f, P-38J and P-38L all in formation together. It think GG is going to be at OshKosh, if she's not already there.

    Micdrow, is Glacier Girl up there?
     
  3. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Yep she came up on Tuesday. I actually took the day off from the airshow today, pretty worn out but will be back over there tomorrow and sunday.

    Beautiful aircraft but a pain for war bird officials. More so then other aircraft.
     
  4. SoD Stitch

    SoD Stitch Banned

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    Why is that? Does it require special ground-handling equipment? Is it because it's a little bigger than most other warbirds?
     
  5. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Actually no, after talking to one of the warbird handlers they said the big thing they had was that every night it has to be put into a hanger. So they have to tow her back and forth every day of the airshow. Unlike all the other warbirds which stay out all night. Also if it looks like rain then it has to be towed back to the hanger till either it stops raining or they sky clears up. I think they said that one day they had to tow her back and forth 3 or 4 times in one day.

    If you have ever been to Oshkosh for the air show and seen how far the Aero Shell is from the hangers then you will know its quite a long way's. Also because she is a average plane and the hanger they had picked out was very small.

    From the way he talked there is only a few inches on either side of the wings for clearance so its quite stress full on the ground crews because they dont want to damage her in either to towing phase or trying to pull her in and out of the hanger. Not to mention lots of people wanting to see her and couldnt at times because it was in the hanger.
     
  6. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    I have a question..... I know Glacier Girl is a prima donna, but does all this
    extra care and feeding cost someone ? Or do the ground handlers do it
    because they love their jobs ?

    Charles
     
  7. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    I assume they dragged her in during rain because of the exhaust stacks being on the top of the fuselage booms? I would imagine if the engine was running it shouldn't be an issue, but sitting idle the water goes right into the engine...
     
  8. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    I believe that its part of the requirement to have Glacier Girl to come for the airshow.

    As far as the ground handlers to they are all volunteers who do it for the love of the aircraft.
     
  9. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    I was wondering that also but the P-38 Ruff Stuff was out in the grass and stayed outside the whole time just like all the rest of the warbirds.
     
  10. SoD Stitch

    SoD Stitch Banned

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    I have been to Oshkosh, but it's been about 30 years; obviously, I don't remember much. I do remember that most of the airfield is grass, unlike other airfields which are mostly dirt or weeds. Spent several nights sleeping under the wing of a light plane.
     
  11. AV8

    AV8 New Member

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    Glacier Girl is a P-38F that is kept immaculate by the owner. There isn't a speck of dirt and won't be. If an airshow wants to have her there, it's part of the agreement --- hangar in the event of bad weather.

    Steve Hinton has flown Glacier Girl every time she has flown since restoration, but soon will turn duties over to the Texas owner. When the Allison went South on the flight to Greenland, BOTH engines were replaced.

    Hope she makes it there NEXT year. Either way, she will likely rside at Chino for awhile.
     
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