We had a B-17 Flying Fortress visit our airport last week as part of a promotional event for the local flying school. This B-17 is a beautiful restoration by the Texas Raiders group and has been used in many air shows along with several movies.
Originally built in the late 1930’s, the B-17 flew mainly out of airfields in southern England to run bombing missions over Germany during WWII. Although the plane wasn’t pressurized, it had a ceiling of 30,000+ feet (the crew wore pressurized flight suits and oxygen), a speed of around 300 mph, a range of 2,000 miles, could carry 17,000 pounds of bombs (normal bomb loads were around 6,000 lbs.), and had up to thirteen 50-cal. machine guns. The plane normally had a crew of 10 airmen.
I got to climb up into the airplane and squeeze my way through the fuselage to the rear door, snapping pictures as I went. Here’s a few shots :