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Author Topic: The Question of 2-2-V-1  (Read 633295 times)

Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1020 on: June 09, 2014, 10:08:56 AM »

We need to get a good handle on the size (length and height) of the patch and what the surrounding structure was like.  I should be able to get that information when I return to the New England Air Museum on June 15th.
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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1021 on: June 09, 2014, 10:35:11 AM »

We need to get a good handle on the size (length and height) of the patch and what the surrounding structure was like.  I should be able to get that information when I return to the New England Air Museum on June 15th.

These pictures as-marked may help as a starting point.  I notice that the patch does not appear to fully extend forward all the way to STA 293 5/8 but appears to pick-up what must be the forward edge of the window cut-out; accordingly the length would be slightly less than the full 27 inches from STA 293 5/8 to STA 320 5/8 - maybe on the order of 25 or 26 inches in length?  The apparent water lines also suggest something on the order of 20 inches high.  As you've noted, more than enough area to account for 2-2-V-1.

- Jeff Neville

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Jay Burkett

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1022 on: June 09, 2014, 12:05:21 PM »

Jeff,

I think that you are on the right rack.  The skin where that window was located appears to be in a comp[ound curvature area (i.e. the curvature is changing slope is more than one direction).  The skin there was most probably stretch-formed on a form block and the window opening cut out later --- maybe after the fuesealege was assembled.  To fit / fair prefectly a window partch or cover would ideally be cut out of a piece of material that was stretch-fomed on the same form block.  Next best would be that the patch would be formed using an "english wheel", or something similiar, to make sure that the patch contour is correct.  The least best fit would be to attempt to rivet a patch from a flat sheet of alclad without prior forming.  Such an installation will always end up with "puckering" somewhere on the sheet.  Instead of "hanger or reamp rash" the visible deformation may be from such puckering.  This would likely have been the case if skins made  from the original tooling were not available which was probable if this was done at an "out station" i.e. Miami.  Likewise, if the patch was installed at a location that did not have an "English wheel" or similiar tooling.   The longitudinal "stiffeners" (i.e. angles, "J", bulb or hat-sections)would have been installed in order to control the shape even if it dod not conform the actual loft-lines in that location.

I guess that leaves us back at why the window was covered over ...

Since this was the only Electra with a large window in this area I wonder if it being there somewhat compromised the strength as compared to a "stock" Electra?  There was already a large opening in the left-hand side for the door. 

Speculation:  If the strength in that area was compromised in that area due to the large window opening could a hard landing cause the area of the fuselage to flex enough to break the window?  You know, if it was mine and it happened more than once --- particularly if it happened at a poorly equipped airfield, I would have had it covered over as best that could be accomplished.  Acrylic sheets may have been available, but, the means to get the plastic sheet to match the contour would probably not be.  The best solution would have been to cover it over with Alclad until a "proper" window would be installed when available.
Jay Burkett, N4RBY
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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1023 on: June 09, 2014, 12:32:30 PM »

You make excellent points, Jay.  You seem to know your way around this kind of work - that is a lot of insight.

I 'see' the puckering effect you speak of - the skin is not well formed to the original contour IMO, but is adapted as best could have been done in the circumstance.  I think you pegged all that well - and it is likely closer to case #3 as you cite than #1 (hydro-formed) or #2 (wheel formed).

I also will speculate that what we see in 2-2-V-1, if associated with this 'patch', is "not inconsistent" with all of that; it bears evidence of later rough treatment as well, of course, whereby some of what we see in the picture - IF associated, is probably mostly supervened by 'beach rash'.  To that I will add the further speculation that the 'explosive force' we see evidence of may actually be partly or in full the effects of a human foot or similar bludgeoning effect by deliberate action to knock the panel loose (YMMV, as may other's, of course).  I'll put it this way - had a human islander hungry for scraps to work with come across an airplance carcass in shallows or within reach and seen this panel - maybe partly tattered already, it may have been easy enough to get inside and beat and whack it loose.  Just speculative thoughts.

Once more, 2-2-V-1 is a very odd piece of metal with some deep history in it, whatever it is.  Despite many inputs raising worthy challenges (and I readily embrace the risk they may yet be true), 2-2-V-1 still has much to tell us - IF it can be discerned.  I believe your thinking helps us down that path - something to look at as we study the artifact and the pictures, etc.

I'm thinking now of how it was just explained that Earhart muffed the landing at Miami to the point of having the ship examined for damage.  One now wonders if some scare erupted over that and whether earlier commentary on cutting a fairly large area of stressed skins out might have been had regarding effects on strength, etc.  Maybe that was part of putting a cover on with some expedited bracing just to add some stability back into a compromised area?  Speculative, sure - but perhaps a test point for us.

I can't tell how the new window was braced inside to offset the removal of that much skin, but it must have been fairly substantial.  I'd like to think there was no question of strength - but maybe it was ill-advised and the truth showed after that landing.  Hard to say - but something to think about.
- Jeff Neville

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Bruce Thomas

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1024 on: June 09, 2014, 01:12:32 PM »

I can't tell how the new window was braced inside to offset the removal of that much skin, but it must have been fairly substantial.  I'd like to think there was no question of strength - but maybe it was ill-advised and the truth showed after that landing.  Hard to say - but something to think about.

I wonder what kind of strengthening bracing was added when that window (if indeed there was such a window) in the Linda Finch Electra (as seen in the picture at the start of that news report, and now in Seattle's Museum of Flight) was skinned over when making the "exact" [sic]  replica of NR16020. Would a photographic record of the interior of that aircraft be helpful? Perhaps a kind person interested in this thread could visit the museum and take some pictures and post them here in the Forum.
LTM,

Bruce
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JNev

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1025 on: June 09, 2014, 01:31:26 PM »

I can't tell how the new window was braced inside to offset the removal of that much skin, but it must have been fairly substantial.  I'd like to think there was no question of strength - but maybe it was ill-advised and the truth showed after that landing.  Hard to say - but something to think about.

I wonder what kind of strengthening bracing was added when that window (if indeed there was such a window) in the Linda Finch Electra (as seen in the picture at the start of that news report, and now in Seattle's Museum of Flight) was skinned over when making the "exact" [sic]  replica of NR16020. Would a photographic record of the interior of that aircraft be helpful? Perhaps a kind person interested in this thread could visit the museum and take some pictures and post them here in the Forum.

I visited in February and made such pictures and will post as soon as able.

The 'same' window does exist in the Finch Electra; it has a different 'hatch' arrangement, however, whereas:

- The Earhart Electra clearly has a square-cornered 'patch' overlying the entire aperture and frame as a 'scab' cover,
- The Finch Electra clearly has a well-radiused and vertically-braced 'hatch' that fits flush to the skin (not on top as on Earhart's bird).

And since pictures are worth a thousand words, I'll quit writing and work on recovering the pictures from my old camera tonight...
- Jeff Neville

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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1026 on: June 09, 2014, 02:14:18 PM »

Nobody should ever use the Finch Electra as an example of anything but a rough approximation of NR16020.
The props are wrong, the cowlings are wrong, the wheels are wrong, the brakes are wrong, etc., etc.
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Jeff Lange

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1027 on: June 09, 2014, 08:31:35 PM »

Nobody should ever use the Finch Electra as an example of anything but a rough approximation of NR16020.
The props are wrong, the cowlings are wrong, the wheels are wrong, the brakes are wrong, etc., etc.
Sounds like her plane is like some women we'd see in a bar, "Looks good from afar, but far from good up close!"  ;D
Jeff Lange

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John Ousterhout

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1028 on: June 14, 2014, 04:43:44 PM »

In reply #1016 Ric mentions "...Manning and/or Mantz apparently decided that the navigator would need an optically correct window on each side of the cabin, so they put one in the door and one in the lav. They also installed various flight instruments and chronometers in the navigator's station.  When I interviewed AE's mechanic Beau McKneeley early in the project I asked him if all that stuff was still there after the plane was repaired.  He said, "No. That Noonan guy said he didn't need all of that stuff."..."

Noonan navigated just fine taking sights through the other windows, which proves that he didn't need an optically correct window.  Old navy ships had special optically-perfect windows to take sights through, but they were very heavy glass (still valued by amateur telescope-makers for mirror blanks).  I couldn't find any specifics of the window actually used in the Lockheed, so any potential weight savings is unknown, but Amelia may have had it removed simply to save weight.  Being damaged in some hypothetical incident might only have provided the perfect opportunity to replace it with a lightweight aluminum skin.
Cheers,
JohnO
 
« Last Edit: June 14, 2014, 04:59:17 PM by John Ousterhout »
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Eddie Rose

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1029 on: August 24, 2015, 09:57:37 PM »

I just read this on the TIGHAR Facebook page.

Quote
"The aluminum plating was a good find, and then it was discovered that writing on it could not have been made as early as the Earhart plane went down."
Not true. Claimed by TIGHAR's critics, yes, but not true.

Meanwhile, a report of the metal composition on this very website:

http://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Research/Bulletins/75_Findings2-2-V-1/R-48-20TIGHARReport.pdf

shows that the chemicals in the metal are consistent with WWII era manufacture.

 ???
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1030 on: August 25, 2015, 06:12:40 AM »

I just read this on the TIGHAR Facebook page.

Quote
"The aluminum plating was a good find, and then it was discovered that writing on it could not have been made as early as the Earhart plane went down."
Not true. Claimed by TIGHAR's critics, yes, but not true.

Meanwhile, a report of the metal composition on this very website:

http://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Research/Bulletins/75_Findings2-2-V-1/R-48-20TIGHARReport.pdf

shows that the chemicals in the metal are consistent with WWII era manufacture.

 ???


Do you not understand the difference between "could not have been made as early as the Earhart plane went down" and "consistent with WWII era manufacture."?  Did you read the Lehigh Testing Labs report?
The lab tested aluminum from two Electras built in 1935; aluminum from 2-2-V-1; and aluminum from two aircraft built in 1943.  The aluminum from 2-2-V-1 was more similar to the metal from 1943 than to the metal from 1935.
With so few samples we can't be sure, but it appears that between 1935 and 1943 the formula for 24ST aluminum changed - primarily with an increase in the percentage of zinc. We don't know when the change was made and whether the change was made all at once or in increments over time.
Earhart's Electra was built in Burbank in April/May 1936.  We do not have a sample of metal from her airplane.  The patch was fabricated in Miami in May 1937.  We don't know whether the aluminum used to build her airplane had a higher percentage of zinc than the metal used in 1935.  We don't know where the metal used to fabricate 2-2-V-1 came from.
The style of lettering on the artifact is a different issue.  It is from the style of lettering on Earhart's Electra and is similar to lettering on some WWII aircraft.  The style of lettering may or may not be related to the formula of the metal.
In short, neither TIGHAR nor TIGHAR's critics have been able to find documentation of when the formula for the metal or the labeling style changed. 
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Greg Daspit

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1031 on: August 25, 2015, 08:35:02 AM »

There were just a few samples and some did not have clear dates.  Taking an example of one of the dated Electra samples and the dated B-17 sample, I assigned graphic values to the nickel, chromium and zinc to help see the differences between these few samples.
3971R
 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1032 on: August 25, 2015, 09:10:44 AM »

There were just a few samples and some did not have clear dates.  Taking an example of one of the dated Electra samples and the dated B-17 sample, I assigned graphic values to the nickel, chromium and zinc to help see the differences between these few samples.

That's really interesting when presented that way.

The B-17, btw, was a G model.  "Shoo Shoo Shoo Baby," serial number 42-32076.  The "42" means that the contract was let in 1942.  The airplane was probably built in 1943.

The presumed B-24 sample has less chromium and more zinc than 2-2-V-1.  We picked up the sample beside the old airfield on Funafuti. Funafuti was a B-24 base.  If it is from a B-24 it could;d be from an airplane but as early as 1941.

These data seem to suggest that the change in formula for 24ST was incremental.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2015, 09:22:21 AM by Ric Gillespie »
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Eddie Rose

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1033 on: August 25, 2015, 10:24:34 AM »

Did you read the Lehigh Testing Labs report?

Yes I did. And the conclusions are damning.

The concentrations of Chromium, Nickel, and Zinc are far higher than the contemporary Electra aircraft tested, and more consistent with the WWII era samples.

Coupled with the other report (also on this very website) that shows it does not fit and I don't see how anyone could defend this scrap of metal as part of her plane.

Here is a quote from the report's conclusions.

Quote
While the zinc difference may be a toss-up, the chromium content appears to be a strong marker and would thus appear to show 2-2-V-1 to resemble the alloys from the later dates
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: The Question of 2-2-V-1
« Reply #1034 on: August 25, 2015, 11:24:43 AM »

And the conclusions are damning.

No, they're not.

The concentrations of Chromium, Nickel, and Zinc are far higher than the contemporary Electra aircraft tested, and more consistent with the WWII era samples.

The Electras tested were NOT contemporary with either Earhart's airplane or the patch.  The Electras tested were built in 1935, a year before Earhart's airplane and two years before the patch was fabricated.  Aviation related technologies were evolving rapidly in the 1930s.  2-2-V-1 is not like the 1935 alloy nor is it just like the wartime metal that was tested.  It seems to be somewhere between 1935 and 1943. 

Coupled with the other report (also on this very website) that shows it does not fit

The "other report" is an amateur analysis by an individual who is not a trained photogrammetrist. We published it as a courtesy, not to endorse it.  We don't agree with his findings.

The Lehigh Testing Labs' report is a professional report.  We fully endorse their findings.  Nowhere in the report do they say that 2-2-V-1 cannot be the patch.

and I don't see how anyone could defend this scrap of metal as part of her plane.

Nobody is claiming that this scrap of metal is definitely part of her plane and we're not trying to "defend" or "prosecute" it.  We're testing, to the degree we can, the hypothesis that it is the Miami patch. We've noted striking similarities between the artifact and the patch. We think it is probably the patch, but we can't be sure.  So far no one has come up with proof that it cannot be the patch. We're not likely to find anything that proves that it IS the patch (I don't know what that would be) but it's possible that a document could turn up that disqualifies it.  That hasn't happened yet, nor has anyone come up with a credible alternative explanation for where it came from.


Here is a quote from the report's conclusions.

Quote
While the zinc difference may be a toss-up, the chromium content appears to be a strong marker and would thus appear to show 2-2-V-1 to resemble the alloys from the later dates

Yes, it resembles the alloys from the later date, but it is not just like the alloys from the later date.  When did the alloy change to become like 2-2-V-1?  1943?  1941?  1939?  1936?   So far, nobody has found the document that establishes that date.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2015, 11:26:16 AM by Ric Gillespie »
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