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Author Topic: The Wreck Photo  (Read 8453 times)

James G. Stoveken

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The Wreck Photo
« on: April 28, 2010, 09:33:31 AM »

This post is prompted by the recent posts on TIGHAR's Facebook wall and refers to Research Bulletins 10 (Wreck Photo Update)  and 55    (Wreck Photo Resolved).  I think the cowling in the wreck photo excludes it as being the Electra.  But the lightening holes behind the leading edge would seem to exclude the Ki-54.  Did TIGHAR find evidence that the Ki-54 does have lightening holes despite what's shown on the technical drawings?

And, if the links actually work, I'd like to thank Marty for the tutorial!
Jim Stoveken
 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Wreck Photo
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2010, 10:01:13 AM »

Good point about the lightening holes.  We don't have any evidence that the KI-54 was different from the tech drawings - so that's a problem - and yet everything else seems to fit. That photo can drive you nuts.
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: The Wreck Photo
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2010, 12:12:36 PM »

... Research Bulletins 10 (Wreck Photo Update)  and 55 (Wreck Photo Resolved). ...

And, if the links actually work, I'd like to thank Marty for the tutorial!

The links actually work.  Well done!

It's been years since the Wreck Photo was a hot topic in the old e-mail Forum.  I seem to remember that big disqualifiers were found between the cowls in the photo and those used on the Electra.  When I was in Auckland for TIGHAR on Bones II, I visited a nearby air museum with Howard Alldred (RIP).  That was the year of the Wheel of Fortune expedition, so I took a lot of photos of the landing gear of the museum's Electra along with closeups of how the cowl was built.  Here is the whole photo album from that day.

From looking at the Electra's cowlings, I satisfied myself that there was no way to have the front ring come off the engine as is shown in the Wreck Photo--so, whatever else it may be, it is not an Electra and therefore not AE's Electra.  The Electra's cowling is a three-piece assembly that can be removed without removing the propellers.  You would have to use a cutting torch to take off the front "ring" because it only exists when the parts of the cowl are all bolted together.

You can see one of the "parting lines" very clearly in the side of the cowl in the first photo here, as well as the line at the top front of the cowl:






LTM,

           Marty
           TIGHAR #2359A
 
« Last Edit: April 28, 2010, 12:25:13 PM by moleski »
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Simon Ellwood

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Re: The Wreck Photo
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2013, 07:24:17 AM »


This thread is more than 3 years old, and the issue of the wreck photo is now probably moot - but I was involved in the initial discussions about this enigmatic 'wreck photo' back in the late 90's and just wanted to update and effectively close this 'loose end'.

About a year back, a remarkedly intact Tachikawa Ki-54 was recovered from Lake Towada in Japan. The fuselage had broken into several pieces - one break occurring just in front of the wing. One photo amongst many taken during the recovery shows a view looking rearwards into the fuselage at the break forward of the wing. The front wing spar is visible passing through the lower fuselage, and.... the spar DOES indeed have lightening holes !  :o

Here's a link to a site reporting the recovery (checkout the 6th photo down for the lightening holes):
http://arawasi-wildeagles.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/breaking-news-tachikawa-ki-54-trainer.html

More photos on Facebook here:
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10152121547860311.914349.10150149956615311&type=3

Regards
Simon Ellwood
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James G. Stoveken

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Re: The Wreck Photo
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2013, 10:00:50 PM »

I was involved in the initial discussions about this enigmatic 'wreck photo' back in the late 90's and just wanted to update and effectively close this 'loose end'.

And I believe you've done it, Simon!  Nice find.  Thanks for posting the links.
Jim Stoveken
 
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