Unknown American twin-engined aircraft?

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Kurtl

Airman 1st Class
129
1
Aug 14, 2006
Please help me to identiy this great part! I just found it today in our local woods in Austria. Area is SW of St.Pölten (WSW Vienna).

Some numbers were found on this part: "222836R", "(R170)", "222374-6", "(R129)", "3122" (painted in black letters, as well as: "T AN A").

The people who owns that part of the wood told me that the plane crashed when there was snow. I believe it was winter 1943/44 or 1944/45. Sure that is a long period, but maybe someone can help? Would like to identify this aircraft and crew. There was another hint they gave me: Two men bailed out just before the crash. One broke his leg. One had a ribbon around his chest with german letters on it: "ROTER HUND" which means "RED DOG". The crew called him like that because of his red hair. Maybe that helps for identification?

Attached you find some pictures. The wood contains some more parts. Will try to get some more interesing to post here. Thanks for any help!

Kind regards from Austria,

Kurtl
 

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The part number sequence may be to a Douglas A-20 Havoc or Boston. The 222836R may be an assembly with the "R" signifying right and the 222374-6 signifying a component on the right side. I am guessing on this to a point.

Are there any stamps or unique symbols on the part? Here is an example of Douglas inspection stamp.

Hope this helps...
 

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Thanks for that help! Think the plane only had two crewmembers.

I have not found any unique stamps like this but will keep looking. Will check about Havoc and Boston too.

I was again at the crashplace today. Please look at the new pictures. There is a huge part of an engine. On it I found some plagues. Unfortunatel unable to read. It was something like "1165" but that is just a part of the number. The part was too deep in the dirt and too heavy to put away.

Kurtl
 

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Yeah, and the 15th USAAF had such "Droop Snoots". Wonder who got it down.
I made some pictures from the other parts I found yesterday. The one looks like a part from the elevator. The bullet shells show "W" "T" and "4" at the bottom. On the yellow part (think it is something from the hydraulic) I found some stampings: "PTS" and"AR" or "A2".

Checked some books with pictures about a P38. I'm sure now.

Kurtl
 

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Hey, Kurtl!
Go to the our technical section and download the free pilot manual for P-38:
http://www.ww2aircraft.net/forum/other-mechanical-systems-tech/p-38-flight-manual-4878.html
The last part, you called "sth. hydraulic" is an aileron valve (see pilots manual p.15).
The "V" shaped part looks like an arm for mass ballance mounted on the elevator.
I suppose, that long tube is an exhaust collector ducting to turbocharger.

Try to get a part catalogue for P-38.
 
Agree Sailor! And I looked at some of the Part Numbers for a later model P-38 and they also match the sequence initially shown. The PTS stamp looks like a "pressure tested" stamp. If you look on the part there are serrations in the material, someone took some pliers to that part!
 
Yes, I agree! Downloaded the pilot's manual for P38. The yellow part I found really looks like the one described at page 15. I saw another part in the woods looking like the access ladder shown in the same manual at page 22. Unfortunatly I didn't take it.

Got some offer to buy a part catalogue throught the internet for about 100 Doller. That's quite too expensive for me. Does anyone know a cheaper source or would have a look for me at his?

Yesterday I thought a "Droop Snoot" is a reconnaissance aircraft. Looked it up in a book today. So I read that it was a bomb leader for P38 used as a bomber. Could find out that Lockheed just converted 23 P38J's and built 100 conversation kits. This information is out of the "Yellow Series P-38J-L". So for me it looks like this aircraft was kind of rare.

I found some bullet shells too. Does anyone know if a "Droop Snoot" was equipped with guns at all? Think they needed the whole space for the Norden bomb sight and the second crew member.

So has anyone informations about the missions of these "Droop Snoots".

Kurtl
 
Yesterday I thought a "Droop Snoot" is a reconnaissance aircraft. Looked it up in a book today. So I read that it was a bomb leader for P38 used as a bomber. Could find out that Lockheed just converted 23 P38J's and built 100 conversation kits. This information is out of the "Yellow Series P-38J-L". So for me it looks like this aircraft was kind of rare.
I agree about 128 total built. But there was other 2 seater version called "Pathfinder" with AN/APS-15 radar operator. Did you found any electronic eqipment?

I found some bullet shells too. Does anyone know if a "Droop Snoot" was equipped with guns at all? Think they needed the whole space for the Norden bomb sight and the second crew member.
Neither "Droop Snoot" nor "Pathfinder" have guns. Could you tell us what shells (especialy lenght and diameter) did you found? Typical american .50 cal gun has 12,7x99 mm shells or could be Hispano M2 20x110 mm cannon shells.
 
There is another possible P-38. Its the P-38M-5-LO. None seen combat in Europe as they came out at the end of 1944 but around 75 where made. Possible post WWII crash. I do have the serial numbers for these aircraft if you can find a serial number. It is a two seater as you can see and it does carry weapons.
 

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Micdrow, I haven't heard about night Lightnings flying in Europe. IMO they were used on Pacific Theatre only!

I will have to do some more reading on it when I get home from work. I thought the article I was reading said a few made it to Europe but not in time to see combat.
 
Haven't found any electronic equipment nor a Norden bomb sight. About the shell's I have to measure them as soon as I get them again. Read on different sites on the Internet that some "Droop Snoots" kept two .5 brownings on board because they didn't weight too much.

An old men of the the little village close to the crashplace told me that it happened during WW2. He couldn't remember an exact date or even year but he told me that there was snow. Usually such information is true.

Anyway thank's for your interest and help. Will keep you involved about the shells.

Kurtl
 
Read on different sites on the Internet that some "Droop Snoots" kept two .5 brownings on board because they didn't weight too much.
Sounds suspicious :confused: . Can you post some links to these sites? There are any pictures of this modification?
I've got a picture of a single XF-5 prototype (photo-recon variant) with clear nose for second crewmember (photographer) and two .50 cal guns on the top of gondola but she never flew operationally.

P.S.
Could you post some more pictures? :)
 
Sounds suspicious :confused: . Can you post some links to these sites? There are any pictures of this modification?

I got to agree with net sailor. I cant find any pictures either with that modification or documentation. Bye the way you where right that the P-38 I mentioned before never did end up in Europe.

Where missing something with this aircraft. Wished I knew what though :oops:
 
Well, I do not have any pictures of a Droop Snoot with machine guns on board. I entered at google: "P38 Droop Snoot". Then I found some mentiones about armored ones with guns like: http://home.att.net/~ww2aviation/P-38-3.html or: "Droop Snoot" P38 - FSIC Messageboard. The last one is just a post at a forum.

Attached you'll find my drawing of the shell bottom I found at the crashplace. All three I got look the same.

Then I found an other part. Maybe it has something to do with radar eqipment or a bomb sight but probably it is just something for ordenary electicity. The cover is 315 mm x 300 mm. The badge on it is heavily damaged but maybe someone know what it meant. Thanks for any ideas!

Kurtl
 

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Sorry Kurtl, but I have no idea what is that.

I found picture of this a/c I mentioned above. It was single XF-5D prototype named "Bobbie I" and never saw combat.
XF-5D.JPG
 

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