NA P-51-D Mustang 44-73419

Published: 04-12-2010 photo #11209 1 comments 0 votes

Category:Military - Historic    Manufacturer:North American Aviation    Country:United Kingdom    Year:2005 Group:Imperial War Museum Duxford, England, United Kingdom    Contributor:Peter Langsdale

Description

"Ferocious Frankie" photographed in one of the hangars at the Imperial War Museum Duxford on 13 September 2005. See also picture 7308.
Extract from the "Ferocious Frankie" web site:
"Built at the North American Aviation Factory at Inglewood, California and accepted by the USAAF on 27/02/1945. One month later it was sent to the 8th Air Force, via Newark and Liverpool docks, serving at Leiston in Suffolk among other stations. The aircraft stayed in England for only 11 months before returning to Newark in January 1946. Briefly kept in storage, in January 1947 it was sent to the Royal Canadian Air Force, operating from Suffield, Alberta. In 1953 with only total 433 flying hours it was completely overhauled in Winnipeg and with only an additional 81 hours time thereafter, was put into outside storage in Carberry Manitoba. Happily, in 1957, it was sold into private hands and registered as N6340T. The aircraft was bought for $5,400 in 1962 with a total of 511 airframe hours. Flying in the Unlimited Race at Reno in 1974, the effectively stock (original) aircraft finished second with an average speed of 384mph.

In April 1980 the aircraft flew across the Atlantic to new owners, The Fighter Collection. Re-sprayed, it became known as Candyman / Moose, with the name on one side of the fuselage and the Moose's head on the other. The Mustang was first displayed in the UK at Biggin Hill in 1981, flown by Ray Hanna, the OFMC's founder.

In 1989, after filming in 'Memphis Belle', the aircraft was given a complete overhaul by The Fighter Collection at Duxford. The airframe was remarkably free of corrosion and damage, but a full strip down and component overhaul was undertaken. An overhauled original flying panel was installed. The rear fuel tank in the fuselage was removed and a wartime style modification made to fit a 'dickey' seat. This 'mod' in 1944 allowed Eisenhower to survey the D-day beaches from the back of a Mustang. A special 1760hp Merlin engine currently powers the aircraft.
OFMC acquired the aircraft early in 1999 and it now carries the highly distinguishing colours of Wallace E. Hopkins, as “Ferocious Frankie”, named in honour of his wife Frankie, coded B7 H of the 374th Fighter Squadron, 361st Fighter Group."

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