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Classic Wings Magazine Luftwaffe Resource Center WWII Naval Aviation Research Pacific


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 Post subject: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:36 am 
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When I found out that there were flying WWII fighters in California I quickly fell in love with the P-40 in all its forms. As it happened, a very significant portion of the world's flying P-40s lived right in the neighborhood. Livermore California was the home base for John Paul and Tom Camp -- John being the real center of it all. When I first got started he had one flying and one being restored and parts for several more.

Tom Camp had another -E with the odd "Executive" cockpit mod with sliding windows, and a guy named Woodson (I think) a much rougher example.


Image2 1 November 1974 248 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

Image2 July 1975 Livermore show 252 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

Image2 July 1975 Livermore show 251 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

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Last edited by Neal Nurmi on Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:40 am 
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I think maybe I'm getting this Flickr thing...

Image1 November 1974 246 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr



Image2 July 1975 249 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr


ImageHamilton-1974--216 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:10 pm 
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ImageLivermore-Airport-1975--217 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr



ImageLivermore-Airport-1975--218 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr



Image1974 Hamilton AFB 262 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:13 pm 
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Fantastic!! I think if there had been more P-40's than Mustangs around when I was growing up, the P-40 would probably be my favorite instead of the Mustang.


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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:26 pm 
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I'm sure the fact they were just about an everyday sight influenced me considerably, Connor. They're a pretty charismatic airplane, and for a while there it seemed like John Paul was popping out a new restoration every couple of years. The Bay Area was a pretty cool place there, for a while, with Mustangs, Hawks, a Bearcat or two, Sea Furies flying and being built up, firefighting Avengers and Tigercats, a B-26 or two, B-25s, a B-29 and on and on -- all within a couple of hours drive.

Interesting times for an energetic young photographer and enthusiast...

And then I discovered Airplane Racing!

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 4:30 pm 
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P-40s are my favourite. Love them!

More top photos, Neal! The third was Richard Woodson's, (still?) wearing markings from filming Tora Tora Tora.

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"It's his plane, he spent the money to restore it, he can do with it what he wants. I will never understand what's hard to comprehend about this." - kalamazookid


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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 4:34 pm 
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In the 70s, Frank Tallman kept his P-40 busy and the type in the public eye via film and TV appearances.

He liked it a lot, perhaps more than a Mustang (it's been awhile since I read his book).

Are they appreciably less expensive to fly than a Mustang?
If so, that could account for some film work.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 5:46 pm 
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John Paul rebuilt that Kittyhawk in his carport! I've always admired his craftsmanship. I thought it would be interesting to post similar angle views of John's airplane and that unrestored example.

The Kittyhawk is still a regular flyer too. It won't be too long before it'll reach 50 years in the care of the Paul family. Outside of Chino, there are not very many privately owned Warbirds with that kind of record.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:01 pm 
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Thanks so much for these photos, Neal! (The last one in the first set is a reverse image of the one above it :wink: )
The rougher P-40 is N1207V; it had all the closeup shots in TTT because it had the original canopy. Tom Camp's plane had some sort of mocked-up canopy and rear cutouts and stayed in the background.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:47 pm 
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Thanks Chris, and everybody wo's enjoying these. It's a pleasure to share them.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:53 pm 
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Image1974 Hamilton AFB 260 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr



Image1975 Livermore 264 by Neal Nurmi, on Flickr

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:21 pm 
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Ahhh, the Coppertone Girl all growd up. Thanks for the pics Neal! For those who don't know, the exec. canopy covers a second seat.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:43 pm 
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There are a couple of stories about the girl on the tail -- best told by John. It was apparently, if I recall John's story correctly, done for free by an odd English chap who approached John about it as the restoration was being finished up. John had doubts, but agreed to try it, and the result lasted for many years. When the tail finally had to be stripped and re covered, John's daughter stretched and framed the fabric and the result hangs in a place of honour in John and Sue's house.

My apologies to the Paul's if I've gotten the story wrong. I heard the story in the midst of a couple of glasses of Scotch, so...

Great people, those Pauls.

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:42 pm 
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Neal Nurmi wrote:
There are a couple of stories about the girl on the tail -- best told by John. It was apparently, if I recall John's story correctly, done for free by an odd English chap who approached John about it as the restoration was being finished up. John had doubts, but agreed to try it, and the result lasted for many years. When the tail finally had to be stripped and re covered, John's daughter stretched and framed the fabric and the result hangs in a place of honour in John and Sue's house.

My apologies to the Paul's if I've gotten the story wrong. I heard the story in the midst of a couple of glasses of Scotch, so...

Great people, those Pauls.

The other side of the rudder showed the front of the girl, holding a towel to cover up, and the plane was called "Sneak Attack"

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 Post subject: Re: P- 40s in the 1970s
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:49 pm 
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I've always been seriously irritated with myself because I never, to my knowledge, got a good color shot of the other side. I remember thinking about it, but it always seemed to be on the shadow side of the airplane, or in front of an unattractive cluttered background, or something. I guess the lesson is to always take the shot as is, and hope a better opportunity comes along at the next air show. Then at least you have something...

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