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Author Topic: The Question of 2-2-V-1  (Read 1037175 times)

John Ousterhout

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #105 on: February 13, 2014, 09:37:54 AM »

Lockheed also comes to mind, something like "Yes, this is definitely a part we installed on Amelia's aircraft during repairs ...." (quotes are mine)
Getting a corporation to make such a statement would need a minor miracle, but a welcome one.
Cheers,
JohnO
 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #106 on: February 13, 2014, 09:48:59 AM »

The NTSB and the Smithsonian come to mind.  Could be others as well; but if those two organizations found that the only reasonable explanation for the presence of 2-2-V-1 is AE's plane, I think it would be accepted as truth.  Again, my opinion.

I've already been down that road with the NTSB.  Their lab was willing to do materials identification on our artifacts but they were emphatic that they would not offer interpretations of the results or offer opinions about what kind of airplane the artifacts came from.  NTSB is not about to get dragged into the Earhart controversy.  Also - NTSB doesn't have expertise in the historical construction/repair issues that are crucial to understanding the artifact.

Smithsonian?  Yes, the NASM Udvar-Hazy restoration shop has the credentials we're looking for and their concurrence with our findings would be huge, especially given the skeptical stance on TIGHAR's findings by the NASM staff downtown.  But I don't think we're ready to take it to them yet.  I want to really nail down the crucial difference between the artifact and WWII-vintage aircraft.  To help us do that I have just today been able to enlist the help of another major air museum restoration shop (which will remain nameless for the moment).
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #107 on: February 13, 2014, 09:55:37 AM »

Lockheed also comes to mind, something like "Yes, this is definitely a part we installed on Amelia's aircraft during repairs ...." (quotes are mine)
Getting a corporation to make such a statement would need a minor miracle, but a welcome one.

I don't see any way that Lockheed Martin could make such a statement unless they have repair documents we haven't seen (and I know they don't know of any such documents).  There is nobody working at Lockheed Martin now that knows one-tenth of what we know about the Model 10.  Lockheed Martin is TIGHAR-friendly and was a sponsor of the 2012 expedition.  They might possibly endorse the findings of museum experts.
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Tim Collins

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #108 on: February 13, 2014, 10:34:48 AM »

I know there's still a lot of leg work to be done narrowing in on the potential uniqueness of the item in question, but  Realistically, what can could be possibly hoped for beyond being deemed "consistent with" a particular plane?
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Monty Fowler

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #109 on: February 13, 2014, 12:07:16 PM »

That depends on what, exactly is "deemed," I would think.

If the part is "deemed consistent with" a pre-WWII aircraft, that narrows it down.

If the part is "deemed consistent with" civilian vs. military aircraft construction, that narrows it down still more.

If the part is "deemed consistent with" a certain company's known manufacturing methods, that narrows it down even more.

The process of elimination usually yields a defensible answer. Of course, for whatever reason, TIGHAR's detractors have set the bar for unassailable proof very, very high.

LTM, who thrives on games of 20 Questions,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 CER
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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Greg Daspit

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #110 on: February 13, 2014, 12:48:33 PM »

Pre-war aluminum and a pre-war rivet found in it. The aluminum was a type used for repairs. A rivet pattern match to a specific spot in on the belly of an L-10 Electra.  AE’s Electra was repaired in this same area.  All of this matches, not just an Electra, but AE’s repaired Electra. It was found in an isolated place AE went missing.  Sure looks like smoke.

So what are the non matches to an original Electra that may actually still fit AE’s repaired Electra?  Are there photographic examples of the repair method in question used on other planes? If it is bigger rivets used on repairs, find pictures of before and after as an example or take pictures of a plane repaired with this method and one of the same type that wasn’t.  It might be used as an illustration to help people understand.
3971R
 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2014, 06:28:44 PM by Greg Daspit »
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Dave Ross Wilkinson

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #111 on: February 13, 2014, 02:11:09 PM »

Pre-war aluminum and a pre-war rivet found in it. The aluminum was a type used for repairs. A rivet pattern match to a specific spot in on the belly of an L-10 Electra.  AE’s Electra was repaired in this same area.  All of this matches, not just an Electra, but AE’s repaired Electra. It was found in an isolated place AE went missing.  Sure looks like smoke.

So what are the non matches to an original Electra that may actually still fit AE’s repaired Electra?  Are their photographic examples of the repair  method in question used on other planes? If it is bigger rivets used on repairs, find pictures of before and after as an example or take pictures of a plane repaired with this method and one of the same type that wasn’t.  It might be used as an illustration to help people understand.


A great summary the puts it in perspective for me, a long time, too-ignorant-to-contribute lurker who can no longer hold back.

So ... if we postulate that 2-2-V-1 is an actual piece of Alclad used to repair AE's Electra, does its present condition say anything about how it got to be where it was found, and in its present condition? 

How might it have been removed from the rest of the Electra?  Is it part of a larger piece that was ripped off the belly of the plane on landing? 

Why wasn't it washed off the reef with the rest of the plane? 

Is there anything in the high resolution aerial photos that might hint of its presence on the reef ?

I hope I'm not going over material that's already been covered before, at least in the present context.
Dave Wilkinson
 
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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #112 on: February 13, 2014, 02:22:27 PM »

As I understand from some of Ric's postings, the printed "ALCLAD" clearly seen in this Japanese Flying Boat wreck example in New Guinea was applied by machine, while the lettering found on 2-2-V-1 was stamped or stenciled by hand (please correct me if I've got that wrong), which clearly indicates the artifact was of pre-war manufacture.  Was Japan building aircraft using ALCLAD purchased from the US before the war, or was there some other way for them to get it during the war?  I'm confused by the timing of the sequence of events - when was the transition from "pre-war" hand stamping to "war-time" machine stamping "ALCLAD"?  I assume the change took place after the L-10 was repaired but before Japan stopped buying from the US. 

Papua is a long ways away from Gardner Island, but the Japanese lost quite a number of these large flying boats during the war in places much closer.  See This Pacific Wrecks page

(later update -  found in Tiger Tracks Volume 12, number2/3:  "...the labeling was hand-stamped, a practice replaced by rolled-on labeling when aluminum production boomed after 1939."
Doesn't this indicate that the Japanese ALCLAD examples were produced after 1939, but before 1941?)

I found an interesting book review of Japanese Aircraft Equipment 1940-1945  that might contain some information on early-war and pre-war Japanese aircraft.

Interesting piece of history, that particular ALCLAD.  That wreck apparently was a Kawanishi H6K which was inspired (if not a licensed creation of the Japanese) by a Shorts Brothers example.  The Japanese were clearly obtaining all the technology and hardware that they could in the years leading up to WWII.  I do not know for sure, but would not doubt that they would have obtained production alclad to the extent possible, for as long as possible - and perhaps (conjecture here) the ramping up of American production before the war was actually on provided a source.

Note that the H6K first flew in 1936 - a might early for "war time production build-up" perhaps, but didn't enter service until 1938.  Production followed that for some years, so newer stocks of aluminum sheet bearing 'wartime production markings' (1938 onwards as I understand it in industrial production terms) were certainly possible sources.  How can that be?  As you've pointed out, 1941 was a pivotal moment - and 'wartime production' had been underway for some time, but we were not 'enemies' with Japan and it is evident that trade was still happening. 

It is ironic that U.S. origin metal turns up that way in the Japanese air fleet - kind of like the old saying in my home county of "they're shooting the Sherwood back at us".  That was in fact speaking of how local scrap metal sold from the local defunct railroad was scooped-up by the shipload by the Japanese just before the war - and presumably used in their own wartime building.

But the telling fact is we have 'wartime production' styled markings on a Japanese HK6 seaplane wreck in the Pacific - and that the HK6 was a product largely of the time of production of such metal in the U.S., and clearly the metal was obtainable by the Japanese.  That probably actually diminishes the HK6 as a likely donor for 2-2-V-1 by its own vintage.
- Jeff Neville

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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #113 on: February 13, 2014, 02:30:04 PM »

It is ironic that U.S. origin metal turns up that way in the Japanese air fleet - kind of like the old saying in my home county of "they're shooting the Sherwood back at us".  That was in fact speaking of how local scrap metal sold from the local defunct railroad was scooped-up by the shipload by the Japanese just before the war - and presumably used in their own wartime building.

"e. e. cummings told him":

it took
a nipponized bit of
the old sixth

avenue
el;in the top of his head:to tell

him
LTM,

           Marty
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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #114 on: February 13, 2014, 03:42:22 PM »

Pre-war aluminum and a pre-war rivet found in it. The aluminum was a type used for repairs. A rivet pattern match to a specific spot in on the belly of an L-10 Electra.  AE’s Electra was repaired in this same area.  All of this matches, not just an Electra, but AE’s repaired Electra. It was found in an isolated place AE went missing.  Sure looks like smoke.

So what are the non matches to an original Electra that may actually still fit AE’s repaired Electra?  Are their photographic examples of the repair  method in question used on other planes? If it is bigger rivets used on repairs, find pictures of before and after as an example or take pictures of a plane repaired with this method and one of the same type that wasn’t.  It might be used as an illustration to help people understand.


A great summary the puts it in perspective for me, a long time, too-ignorant-to-contribute lurker who can no longer hold back.

So ... if we postulate that 2-2-V-1 is an actual piece of Alclad used to repair AE's Electra, does its present condition say anything about how it got to be where it was found, and in its present condition? 

Good questions, and we may never know the answers for certain.  But its battered condition suggests a hard journey to our hands - apparently separated from the host airframe by some degree of violence, whether sudden or gradual unknown to me.  It is rich with complex failure modus (if not moduli (sic)) - cracks and tensile failures abound in multiple planes, bending and stretching is evident to degree that I believe NTSB commented on some property changes in the metal (plastic state?) - and we can see edge-evidence of that where the heavier rivet line was torn-out by some force.  We also see a dimpling effect where the many #3 brazier rivets once were, so some 'blow-out' effect is there, whether by mechanical separation or some hydraulic force, as has been suggested, or 'other'.  Then we have some prospect of the sheet having been used to cook fish over a fire or coals - further compounding the possibilities of how it may have been recycled by its finders.

Where did it have to be for all that to happen?  Obviously those things could have happened in various sequences in any number of different places, but they could have also happened right there on Gardner / Niku if the metal arrived with Earhart, was found among debris in the surf and rescued, and subsequently subjected to further man-handling for various reasons of salvage / secondary use.

Quote
How might it have been removed from the rest of the Electra?  Is it part of a larger piece that was ripped off the belly of the plane on landing? 

Impossible to say for certain in my view and likely not by one neat process, but by 'worrying' in the surf, perhaps after some initial mechanically-imposed damage (impact of some sort).  It could have remained attached to a parent member, which had been detached - or been partly exposed in a storm, or washed up as a singular piece during some heavy surf event.  My personal suspicion is that foraging people found it attached to some portion of junk that might have led to the anecdotal reports we have of an airplane wreck on the reef.

Quote
Why wasn't it washed off the reef with the rest of the plane? 

Maybe it was.  The sea taketh, and the sea giveth back on occasion; or maybe it was jammed in a groove and later found or dislodged and washed ashore.  Can't know.

Quote
Is there anything in the high resolution aerial photos that might hint of its presence on the reef ?

I don't recall anything like this being found, but we're talking about something that could well be hard to see at that resolution.  I do recall TIGHAR studying some metal signatures earlier from satillite or similar images, and it could have shown up as an indistignuishable item - if on the beach when those pictures were taken.  If deep in the village - where it was found, my guess is it would have been impossible to see.

Quote
I hope I'm not going over material that's already been covered before, at least in the present context.

If you are it is worthwhile to freshen the discussion in my view - can't hurt the effort to be thorough about the reiview of this item.
- Jeff Neville

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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #115 on: February 13, 2014, 03:45:28 PM »

It is ironic that U.S. origin metal turns up that way in the Japanese air fleet - kind of like the old saying in my home county of "they're shooting the Sherwood back at us".  That was in fact speaking of how local scrap metal sold from the local defunct railroad was scooped-up by the shipload by the Japanese just before the war - and presumably used in their own wartime building.

"e. e. cummings told him":

it took
a nipponized bit of
the old sixth

avenue
el;in the top of his head:to tell

him

Delightful, Marty - thanks!  I see my home county didn't exactly invent the notion! LOL!!!

I'm also told that my great-great-grandfather refused to sell scrap before the war because of his firm belief that the Japanese were doing with it exactly what it turned out that they were doing with it... bless his soul.
- Jeff Neville

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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #116 on: February 14, 2014, 09:27:45 AM »

So ... if we postulate that 2-2-V-1 is an actual piece of Alclad used to repair AE's Electra, does its present condition say anything about how it got to be where it was found, and in its present condition? 

Yes, it's present condition speaks volumes about its odyssey.

How might it have been removed from the rest of the Electra?  Is it part of a larger piece that was ripped off the belly of the plane on landing?
 

We're working up a series of events to explain what appears to have happened.  Not ready for prime time yet.

Why wasn't it washed off the reef with the rest of the plane?
 

It probably was.

Is there anything in the high resolution aerial photos that might hint of its presence on the reef ?

No, not that we can see.

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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #117 on: February 14, 2014, 09:36:30 AM »

I know there's still a lot of leg work to be done narrowing in on the potential uniqueness of the item in question, but  Realistically, what can could be possibly hoped for beyond being deemed "consistent with" a particular plane?

We already know it's "consistent with" Earhart's repaired Electra but that's not good enough.  We have a room full of artifacts that are "consistent with" the Niku hypothesis.

What we may have here that is different than anything else we have is the ability to conclusively eliminate all other rational sources for the artifact.  In other words, instead of proving it exactly matches NR16020 we may be able to prove that it can't be from any other airplane that was ever anywhere near Gardner Island.  Does that make it a smoking gun?  That's not for me to say.  That's for you to say.  If there is one thing I've learned in 25 years of chasing Amelia it's that smoking guns are in the eye of the beholder.
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Brian Ainslie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #118 on: February 14, 2014, 10:36:02 AM »

Have the Japanese ever been approached to assist with, at minimum, ruling out their aircraft as the source?
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #119 on: February 14, 2014, 11:04:46 AM »

Have the Japanese ever been approached to assist with, at minimum, ruling out their aircraft as the source?

No.  Neither have the Russians been approached.  The artifact is made of American aluminum and has an American rivet (as evidenced by the dimple in the center of the head.)  For the artifact to be from a Japanese aircraft there would have to be  a relatively small Japanese aircraft repaired with American aluminum and rivets that was destroyed in some location where pieces of the wreck could be salvaged and brought to Nikumaroro.  We know of no Japanese aircraft or incident that meets those requirements.  There is no reason to think that this artifact is not from an American aircraft.
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