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Old 29th March 2019, 02:41
RSwank RSwank is offline
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Re: B-17 Gremlin

A few more thoughts on Gremlin.
In trying to figure out the block number for Gremlin, I discovered something interesting.
I made extensive use of this site, in particular starting on this page and following just the B-17F blocks out to the linked photos.

The position of the right-side gun in the window is unusual. Most of the time the gun in the window is positioned toward the nose of the plane. Such a here:

The only photo I found with the gun on the “back” side of the window (and with the navigator’s dome and other features that Gremlin has) is this one:

This might suggest that the Gremlin was part of the same block, i.e. B-17F-45-BO, which consisted of serial numbers 42-5250 to 42-5349. Most of those planes never went overseas and none in the block seem to be named Gremlin.

The other thing of interest in the photo of Gremlin is the position of the sun. If you look at man leaning out of the copilot’s window and try to estimate the position of the sun based on the shadow his head casts I think you will agree that it has to be a fairly high altitude. I.e., it is not at 90 degrees (directly overhead) but line from the tip of the shadow through the top of the cap on his head which is casting the shadow seem to point between 70 to 80 degrees at least. What parts of Europe, even on June 21 when the sun is the furthest north would experience a sun altitude that high? This is a site:
that lets you play around with various locations and dates and see what the altitude of the sun would be throughout any particular day. If we assume a “best” case of June 21 and try to find locations that put the sun above 70 degrees, say at 75 degrees around noon, you will find that the only locations seem to be places like Southern Italy, Sicily, Greece and of course points further south.

So, perhaps we are looking for a B-17 that flew in the 12th AF and went down in the summer of 43 (just after the allies had retaken North Africa).

(As to the Gremlin image, I though he might be holding a 45 ;-)
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Old 3rd June 2019, 17:15
kaki3152 kaki3152 is offline
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Re: B-17 Gremlin

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