the B-17.... Our Review of the Video
Flying the B-17 is a very well done 25 minute video, featuring Aluminum Overcast a B-17G that came off of the production line and was delivered to the Army Air Corp in 1945.
The video starts with Hal Weekley explaining a typical mission for the 10 crew members of a B-17 in Europe during World War II. On most missions the crew would spend 11 hours in their bomber. As Hal explains the crew activities for the mission, the viewer is treated to some great historical footage of actual missions.
The first proto-type of the B-17 Flying Fortress flew in June 1935, and they went into production in 1937. During the course of production over 12,700 airframes were built, and they flew in excess of 291,000 mission during World War II. Despite the incredible number of B-17s that were built, fewer than 100 airframes exists today, and only 12 remain in airworthy condition. This is thanks to a massive post war scraping of the aircraft that came back from the war. This was a tragedy and resulted in the destruction of tens of thousands of wonderfully historic aircraft at the end of the war.
Next the viewer is treated to a preflight and engine start up from inside the cockpit of Aluminum Overcast as pilot Verne Jobst talks us through the procedure as he starts number one and two engines.
After engine start the B-17 is taxied out, the tailwheel is locked and Verne applies the power as he comments "when you start your roll the airplane wants to fly." The takeoff is followed by a long spectacular segment of air to air, ground to air, cockpit, tail and elevator mounted camera work of several low passes down a runway which truly give the viewer a since of what is like to fly the Flying Fortress. At the end of the segment, Verne talks the viewer through a landing procedure as the B-17 flies the pattern down to a very nice three point landing after crossing the numbers at 90 mph.
Several pilots talk about their experiences and what it is like to fly the B-17 including a wonderful couple Ed and Connie Bowlin who have had the very unique experience of flying the B-17, B-25, C-47 and B-26 as pilot and copilot.
Aluminum Overcast is
the 398th Bomb Group paint scheme, and has had a history which has
flying cargo in the Caribbean, being used in precision mapping of the
This a wonderful video for anyone who has a love or interest in this wonderful aircraft called the B-17 Flying Fortress.
StrangeBirds.com All rights reserved. copyrighted 1998-2010