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A visit to the National Museum of Naval Aviation, Part 4

This is the last batch of photos from my November visit. Two pleasant surprises occurred on this one. The first was happening to be there on the day the Blue Angels were doing their practice session for their final show of the year at Jacksonville NAS, which was only a few days away. Getting to see the team up close without the benefit of your average airshow crowd was amazing to say the least. Several times, they were over our heads low enough to see the rivets on the bottom of the airplanes. The practice sessions throughout the year are open to the public, the schedule being posted on the museum’s website.

The second surprise happened while walking back from the flightline after the show. The museum’s restoration shops are close by, and as I was passing, an airplane in the hangar caught my eye, so I wandered over to look at it. It was a Temco TT-1 Pinto. While snapping a picture, a gentleman walked up and we struck up a conversation. He was surprised I knew what a Pinto was, which led to his inviting me over the fence for a quick tour of the shops! He is one of the mechanics working in the shop. Inside were an SBD Dauntless and a Birdcage Corsair, both off the bottom of Lake Michigan. The F6F was salvaged from San Diego Bay and is awaiting a new right wing. The T-38 at the far end of the hangar came from one of the Aggressor squadrons in Nevada and has since been completed and put on display. After going through the shop, we made a quick trip to the flight line, which was cut a bit short because the security people were trying to shut it down after the show. I have to apologize again – being an aircraft mechanic / geek, my need to have hands on the airplanes in there pretty much overrode the need to take pictures! As an aside – the SBD, Hellcat and Corsair all had panels that were left in the original paint installed somewhere on the airplane so you could see what they looked like. I thought it was a nice touch. My friend told me all the airplanes on the flight line had flown in. It’s tough to see them sitting out there rotting, so I hope someone has plans for another hangar to get them all inside.

I visited the museum again a week ago and will post those pics when I get home, as well as those I took on a couple of other visits I made. Enjoy!

47 additional images. Click to enlarge.


14 responses to A visit to the National Museum of Naval Aviation, Part 4

  1. Fantastic photos, I see out side, the C-9B behind the Savage #38, That’s the last live aircraft I worked on in the navy reserves, How many days did you visit the museum?

    • I made two visits, one in early November when these pics were taken, and another this past Tuesday. Behind the main museum building is another hangar full of airplanes that I didn’t get to the first time, which was part of the reason for the second visit. I haven’t downloaded those pics yet, but will post them as soon as I do.

      That is indeed a C-9B behind the Savage. I worked on the civilian version, which is the DC-9-30 series.

  2. Great set of pics Jaime, glad you had a great time pal.
    N.

  3. Wow! That was some special day you had, Jaime! The Blues up closer than one normally would see them, THEN a personal “tour” by a gent who works there into areas most will never see. Wow!

    Jaime, thanks a big bunch for sharing.

  4. Fabulous pictures. Been there several times and can’t get enough. As a Navy Vet and model builder, the staff there always treats me like a king. Even got a special one – on – one tour out on the flight line so I could get some pictures that I couldn’t get from the bus tour. Also, the archives staff is great. They will locate and e-mail photos of interest to you, at least any that are on file.

  5. Snoop around in here. Aircraft, aircraft, aircraft and aircraft carriers too.
    http://www.navalaviationmuseum.org/education/online-exhibits/

  6. Yep….definitely a better trip to the museum that I had. Much appreciated.

  7. Jaime, thanks for posting these. Looks like they have all of my personal favorites! And the restorations are first rate! Probably better than when they rolled out of the factory, whenever that was. Even a Pinto! And a Timm! Egad!

  8. Your enthusiasm really shows, Jaime, thanks again for sharing these pictures with us.

  9. Thanks for posting all of these (X4) articles Jaime. I’m glad to see how much progress they have made on the Birdcage F4U……………. Also do you happen to know the fuselage side lettering on the SBD ??? Looks like you had a great time buddy……………

    • ?-S-3………………. My question was about the first letter(s) or number(s) on the side …………… Thanks again.

      • Louis, I think it’s a “5”, but don’t quote me on that. The airplane crashed into Lake Michigan on a training flight in 1944 while flying off the USS Sable. I didn’t think to get another shot of the airplane since I was busy oohing and aahing at all the other stuff that was in the hangar…

        • Thanks for the reply. I totally understand the answer given the location………….. I would be oohing and aahing too !!! I think that’s the plane that was assigned to Deland NAS (as a training plane), just before it was sent to the Great Lakes area (possibly Glenview NAS ??) When they recovered it, you could see the previous lettering under the existing paint. I believe it started with “DE” that would denote “Deland” NAS. Thanks again for sharing these photos with us………… You made my day.

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