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Author Topic: New Britain Hypothesis  (Read 89915 times)

Jeff Victor Hayden

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2012, 06:01:38 AM »

Quote
EXCEPT that flying was NOT shut down into the airports around Rabaul because of the volcanic eruption

That's all I needed to know Gary, thanks. So how much extra time aloft around Howland would they have gained by using one of the three operational airports at Raboul instead of Lae as their starting point, a couple of hours?
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Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2012, 06:24:01 AM »

... I was just making a general observation about the proprietary nature of these endeavours.

And I offered specific facts which showed that TIGHAR does pool resources with other organizations, under the right circumstances. 

TIGHAR does have a responsibility to decide what is a proper investment of its resources.  It must also take good care of the property that is entrusted to it.  These are duties imposed on it as a 501 c (3) corporation operating under the laws of the nation.  Squandering its wealth so that it cannot meet its goals would be highly improper.
LTM,

           Marty
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Malcolm McKay

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #17 on: April 13, 2012, 06:27:41 AM »


Squandering its wealth so that it cannot meet its goals would be highly improper.

And that is a most commendable attitude  :)
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 06:29:30 AM by Malcolm McKay »
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Malcolm McKay

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #18 on: April 13, 2012, 07:49:06 AM »

The C/N tag is a strong point in that hypothesis. An aircraft while under construction would be allotted a number by the factory to distinguish it because its issued registration number was not a permanent number. If the aircraft was sold overseas it would receive a civil registration for that country rather than keep its US number, or it could have its CoA withdrawn for a period and later be restored to airworthiness with a new registration number.

But as aircraft in that period were largely handmade despite series production runs there would be slight dimensional changes or special features that could be unique to that aircraft. So if a large complex component was being repaired and had to be taken from the aircraft for that purpose and you had a hangar or repair facility with a couple of them in it, or it went back to the factory for the work then you would need to distinguish that component from others that were similar but not made to fit the aircraft with the problem. Now I am aware that that is explained on the East Britain hypothesis site, however anyone familiar with complex machinery which has a deal of hand fitting in it will be already familiar with that, I certainly was well before I read the New Britain argument. In fact it was that familiarity that made me think more about the idea.

So that is why I find that C/N tag on the engine bearer very interesting because it indicates a need to identify that component to a particular unique airframe. Why? perhaps because it had been removed for repair at some stage, and we know that the Electra was damaged in that ground loop. Now I know enough about aircraft to be aware that engines are not considered part of the airframe, they are designed to be replaceable or interchangeable - they would not have a C/N instead they would probably have a data plate with a model and serial number somewhere on the crankcase or the reduction gear housing in plain view which was allotted by the company that made the engine. Now is the C/N tag number a coincidence and somewhere on a hill in New Britain is another pre-war non-military radial engined wreck or is it the Earhart Electra?

After a great deal of consideration of it I think that the East Britain hypothesis certainly has some validity, and contrary to my inherent scepticism expressed in the Nikumaroro discussions about some of the claims for the material evidence, I admit that had felt that despite those weak points the Nikumaroro hypothesis was the best of the bunch. But after careful thought about the New Britain hypothesis I am now not so certain. If on this next trip TIGHAR turn up clear undeniable evidence of the Electra at Nikumaroro then excellent, but it will leave a tantalising question about what aircraft is on that hill in New Britain. If they don't then we still have the mystery.
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John Ousterhout

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #19 on: April 13, 2012, 08:48:07 AM »

A quick search using key words "constructor number" returned many examples of use of the term.  The first part of the number is the model (10), the second part is the sequential example  (55th model 10, or "C/N 1055" for Amelia's aircraft).  For example, Linda Finch's Lockheed 10A was rebuilt to resemble Amelia's 10E special, but the C/N (1015) did not change.
I did not find a link that mentioned where the Constructor Number might be found on an aircraft, but I didn't read every article.

Interesting.  I'd not heard the term before.
Cheers,
JohnO
 
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Jeff Victor Hayden

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #20 on: April 13, 2012, 04:33:28 PM »

Apparently not on the engines as these were and, still are interchangable...

Michael Claringbould of Aerothentic Publications and author of Leave Amelia Alone:
"If the data plate DID exist with the data: '600 H/P S3H1 C/N1055' then that is the serial number of the engine NOT the aircraft. NO engine carried an aircraft's serial as they were often interchanged."


The engine discovered by the aussie patrol used to belong to B17, blown up, mid air due to enemy fire...

http://pacificwrecks.com/aircraft/b-17/41-2429.html

USAAF did not identify it as 'military' at the time as they had no idea where missing plane was/went down

41-2429 (7th BG, 88th RS) arrived over Pearl Harbor on Dec 7, 1941. 
               Used to evacuate MacArthur's staff from Del Monte, Philippines Mar 25, 1942
               Shot down Rabaul, New Britain Aug 7, 1942...
Brian Bennett adds:
"Our CILHI camp back in 1986. I remember that the wreckage was well scattered and was consistent with the aircraft having blown up in the air. From the lat/long position if you run a radius of about 500 metres then this will safely enclose the wreckage scatter of the B-17. This includes the area of interest of David Billings and his "Earhart Project". I was of the opinion years ago and still am that it is highly unlikely that the engine that David speaks of that is from Model 10 Electra that Amelia Earhart was flying - is in fact one of the engines from B-17E 41-2429. We were on site for two weeks and did not find all the wreckage let alone all the engines. The river is the Powell River or Henry Reid River."
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richie conroy

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2012, 05:00:26 PM »

Apparently not on the engines as these were and, still are interchangable...

Michael Claringbould of Aerothentic Publications and author of Leave Amelia Alone:
"If the data plate DID exist with the data: '600 H/P S3H1 C/N1055' then that is the serial number of the engine NOT the aircraft. NO engine carried an aircraft's serial as they were often interchanged."


The engine discovered by the aussie patrol used to belong to B17, blown up, mid air due to enemy fire...

http://pacificwrecks.com/aircraft/b-17/41-2429.html

USAAF did not identify it as 'military' at the time as they had no idea where missing plane was/went down

41-2429 (7th BG, 88th RS) arrived over Pearl Harbor on Dec 7, 1941. 
               Used to evacuate MacArthur's staff from Del Monte, Philippines Mar 25, 1942
               Shot down Rabaul, New Britain Aug 7, 1942...
Brian Bennett adds:
"Our CILHI camp back in 1986. I remember that the wreckage was well scattered and was consistent with the aircraft having blown up in the air. From the lat/long position if you run a radius of about 500 metres then this will safely enclose the wreckage scatter of the B-17. This includes the area of interest of David Billings and his "Earhart Project". I was of the opinion years ago and still am that it is highly unlikely that the engine that David speaks of that is from Model 10 Electra that Amelia Earhart was flying - is in fact one of the engines from B-17E 41-2429. We were on site for two weeks and did not find all the wreckage let alone all the engines. The river is the Powell River or Henry Reid River."


 :)
We are an echo of the past


Member# 416
 
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Malcolm McKay

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2012, 07:49:37 PM »

Apparently not on the engines as these were and, still are interchangable...

Michael Claringbould of Aerothentic Publications and author of Leave Amelia Alone:
"If the data plate DID exist with the data: '600 H/P S3H1 C/N1055' then that is the serial number of the engine NOT the aircraft. NO engine carried an aircraft's serial as they were often interchanged."


The engine discovered by the aussie patrol used to belong to B17, blown up, mid air due to enemy fire...

http://pacificwrecks.com/aircraft/b-17/41-2429.html

USAAF did not identify it as 'military' at the time as they had no idea where missing plane was/went down

41-2429 (7th BG, 88th RS) arrived over Pearl Harbor on Dec 7, 1941. 
               Used to evacuate MacArthur's staff from Del Monte, Philippines Mar 25, 1942
               Shot down Rabaul, New Britain Aug 7, 1942...
Brian Bennett adds:
"Our CILHI camp back in 1986. I remember that the wreckage was well scattered and was consistent with the aircraft having blown up in the air. From the lat/long position if you run a radius of about 500 metres then this will safely enclose the wreckage scatter of the B-17. This includes the area of interest of David Billings and his "Earhart Project". I was of the opinion years ago and still am that it is highly unlikely that the engine that David speaks of that is from Model 10 Electra that Amelia Earhart was flying - is in fact one of the engines from B-17E 41-2429. We were on site for two weeks and did not find all the wreckage let alone all the engines. The river is the Powell River or Henry Reid River."


Thank you Jeff - one thing (forgive me if I have misread that comment) but B17s were not powered by 600HP P&W engines, they were powered by the Wright R1820 Cyclone engine which by the time they were in operational use was developing 1200 HP.
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Jeff Victor Hayden

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2012, 08:32:41 AM »

Nearly correct malcolm. The early B17s were indeed powered by pratt and Whitney engines. These were discovered to be hopelessly underpowered and later models were fitted with the early versions of the Wright cyclone engines which gradually developed into impressive power plants (600hp - 1800hp) of the later E's up to G's
B-17E "Why Don't We Do This More Often" Serial Number 41-2432  was an early version Model-E. This particular plane had a chequered and short career in the Pacific theatre. Infact she was declared 'unservicable' but, that didn't stop them using it on the day it went down.
I'll post some more info on Serial Number 41-2432 when I get time, it was a very interesting career and, I'll see if I can find which version/versions  of the Wright Cyclone they cobbled together to keep it flying. It is officially recorded as having 'weak engines' which points to the early Wright cyclones amongst the list of faults making it unservicable.
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Malcolm McKay

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2012, 07:06:18 PM »

Nearly correct malcolm. The early B17s were indeed powered by pratt and Whitney engines.

Only the prototype, the Model 299. After it crashed on 30 October 1935 Boeing were asked to re-engine the YB17 with the Cyclone. We both know that if a B17 crashed in New Britain during WW2 it was not the Model 299 which had crashed and burned way back in 1935. So the C/N reference on that metal tag still remains likely to apply to an aircraft fitted with a P&W engine of a type that was fitted to the Electra which disappeared in 1937.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2012, 07:36:48 PM by Malcolm McKay »
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #25 on: April 27, 2012, 08:11:38 PM »

Malcolm, so you think possibly this New Britain wreckage may be the Electra? Good Theory. Ok AE flew on course to '200miles out' of Howland, and turned banck and flew 1700+- miles to New Britain? Okk. Maybe she turned back before '200 miles out'. She was spotted overflying the Gilberts, outbound to Howland, so we know she made it that far. So, if she missed Howland, why go all the way back to New Britain, instead of the Gilberts? And what about the post-loss radio signals from the Phoenix group? Not from the Gilberts area, or New Britain, but the Phoenix group.
I guess I can better talk about your theory after seeing the evidence in DC.  I'm assuming there are no pics of the New Britain wreckage that is identifible. As a highly modified Electra 10E, I assure you there was not another equipped like her in the world. Lets find the new Britain wreckage and look in the fuselege for the extra fuel tank plumbing. Thats a start.
Tom
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John Ousterhout

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #26 on: April 27, 2012, 09:35:50 PM »

Some photos showing the rivets around the engine cowling may be seen at http://tighar.org/Projects/Earhart/Archives/Research/Bulletins/54_HistoryDetectives/%20%2054_HDreport.html
 which also discusses an artifact reputed to be a souvenir of the Luke field crash.

I'd like to know what efforts have been made to track down the tag, or even supporting documentation of the tag.
Cheers,
JohnO
 
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Malcolm McKay

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #27 on: April 27, 2012, 10:33:02 PM »

Malcolm, so you think possibly this New Britain wreckage may be the Electra? Good Theory. Ok AE flew on course to '200miles out' of Howland, and turned banck and flew 1700+- miles to New Britain? Okk. Maybe she turned back before '200 miles out'. She was spotted overflying the Gilberts, outbound to Howland, so we know she made it that far. So, if she missed Howland, why go all the way back to New Britain, instead of the Gilberts? And what about the post-loss radio signals from the Phoenix group? Not from the Gilberts area, or New Britain, but the Phoenix group.
I guess I can better talk about your theory after seeing the evidence in DC.  I'm assuming there are no pics of the New Britain wreckage that is identifible. As a highly modified Electra 10E, I assure you there was not another equipped like her in the world. Lets find the new Britain wreckage and look in the fuselege for the extra fuel tank plumbing. Thats a start.
Tom

Hello Tom

Well actually the East New Britain hypothesis is not mine, but I think it does deserve to be taken seriously as I do the Nikumaroro hypothesis. It would be very useful if there were pics available of the purported wreck but like the possible wreck at Nikumaroro the wreckage has yet to be found let alone photographed. I also think that both the Gilbert hypothesis (based on the Vidal testimony) and the ditched somewhere near Howland Island hypothesis are equally attractive (given the last confirmed data). As I see it none of the four can at the moment be ruled out - that will only occur if and when someone comes up with some identifiable wreckage or remains that tie them to the Electra and Earhart or Noonan. So all we can do at the moment unless something conclusive comes up is discuss the available evidence or lack thereof.   
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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #28 on: April 28, 2012, 02:03:57 AM »

Malcolm, so you think possibly this New Britain wreckage may be the Electra? Good Theory. Ok AE flew on course to '200miles out' of Howland, and turned banck and flew 1700+- miles to New Britain? Okk. Maybe she turned back before '200 miles out'. She was spotted overflying the Gilberts, outbound to Howland, so we know she made it that far. So, if she missed Howland, why go all the way back to New Britain, instead of the Gilberts? And what about the post-loss radio signals from the Phoenix group? Not from the Gilberts area, or New Britain, but the Phoenix group.
I guess I can better talk about your theory after seeing the evidence in DC.  I'm assuming there are no pics of the New Britain wreckage that is identifible. As a highly modified Electra 10E, I assure you there was not another equipped like her in the world. Lets find the new Britain wreckage and look in the fuselege for the extra fuel tank plumbing. Thats a start.
Tom

Hello Tom

Well actually the East New Britain hypothesis is not mine, but I think it does deserve to be taken seriously as I do the Nikumaroro hypothesis. It would be very useful if there were pics available of the purported wreck but like the possible wreck at Nikumaroro the wreckage has yet to be found let alone photographed. I also think that both the Gilbert hypothesis (based on the Vidal testimony) and the ditched somewhere near Howland Island hypothesis are equally attractive (given the last confirmed data). As I see it none of the four can at the moment be ruled out - that will only occur if and when someone comes up with some identifiable wreckage or remains that tie them to the Electra and Earhart or Noonan. So all we can do at the moment unless something conclusive comes up is discuss the available evidence or lack thereof.   

I agree, but I think, also the Marshall Islands (Mili) Theory (Captured by the Japanese)  cannot be ruled out. OK, all the spy-theories should be nonsense, but Amelia and Fred could have been completely "lost" and made it to the Marshalls instead of the Gilberts - without being aware of that.
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Tom Swearengen

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Re: New Britain Hypothesis
« Reply #29 on: April 28, 2012, 06:21:05 AM »

Oskar---that is true. I occured to me that ALL possibilites cannot be discounted until we find some positive evidence of the Electra-somewhere. Whether at Nikumaroro, the Gilberts, New Britian, Mili, on the bottom off Howland, or someplace we havent considered, this is still and investigation. So far, IMHO, this is the more promising of the bunch. And----right now its the ONLY one moving forward.
We will all know something positive at the Symposium, and after the expedition gets to Niku. Not to bash anyone else's theories, but I'd personally like tosee the Electra parts found at Niku. Why? Theories make alittle more sense to me. Potential evidence, like the radio tranmissions, and aluminum add to it. The witness evidence of Emily Sukuli is ok, but it sure would have been nice to have her actually SEE nessie, or a wing with a number on it. But, again it narrows the search box.
On a personal comment note if I can: This exercise has been fastinating! I learned about AE and Freds adventure as a YOUNG man after Fred Goerners book and escapades were broadcast. For those of you unaware, that was in the mid 1960's. Fascinated by the 'unsolvable', I completely be accident stumbled on the TIGHAR website while looking for something else. I must say, Ric and CO, have given me a new perspective on things. Also, by and large, the forum members have been able to project comments, theories, rebuttals, unbelievable knowledge, and get along.
Its amazing to me that people from diverse backgrounds, in different countries, that can think for themselves, can become part of this project, and get along. Yeah, I think we all have had our disagreements from time to time. I know I have. But I think you all can agree that we have behaved pretty well. That, my friends, is a credit to each one of us--and I congratualate you. It is truely a pleasure to be a menber of TIGHAR.
Maybe the best part of all of this is that we are a part of history. Members of a group that may potentially solve one of the biggest mysteries of the 20th century. It has gottenr the attention of alot of people, including young people, like my grand kids. We are showing them how to get along, to theorize and investigate, and even conduct some diplomacy. One big lesson learned here is that NOTHING is out of reach, if you stay with it. Even my 85 year old mother asks how things are going. Imagine for a minute being able to sit down with a group of youngsters, and tell them the story, of 2 adventurers that became lost, and how a group of people from different backgrounds, formed a team, searched, and found the necessary evidence to solve the mystery. And YOU were a part of that. To be able to tell them that you know Ric and other members personally, and that you made a contribution is something to take pride in.
I'm proud of every one on this forum.
Tom
Tom Swearengen TIGHAR # 3297
 
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