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Old 12-29-2017, 12:52 PM   #1
alex1170
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Warbird Fans Out There...

If anyone here has ever wanted to go up in a bonafide WW2 warbird, take note: I happen to fly one.



For the last three years, I have been blessed to have access to this 1941 Vultee BT-13, a plane that was used in WW2 to train pilots. I know, TRAINER??? Don't let that lowly mission fool you. When the throttle is all the way forward and that radial engine is generating a deafening 450 ponies, it is so easy to forget what she was designed for! It is a veritable time machine for those who love WW2 aviation!

Anyhoo, if flying in such a plane (and maybe getting a little stick time in the process) is on your bucket list, you don't mind meeting up at Palo Alto (where she's based), and you're amicable to sharing the operating costs ($300/hr, split two ways), shoot me a PM and I'll try to coordinate you in when I go up.

FYI - her required inspections are coming up in February, so she'll be unavailable come the second half of that month.

Cheers,

Alex
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Old 12-29-2017, 01:04 PM   #2
KrustyKruser
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So awesome!! I'm sure I could split a few $150 hours for that after tax time.
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Old 12-29-2017, 01:58 PM   #3
Maddevill
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Let me know when you get a P-51...

Mad
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Old 12-29-2017, 02:02 PM   #4
dravnx
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The Vultee Vibrator
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Old 12-29-2017, 05:22 PM   #5
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Looks fun

Went to the air museum at San Carlos airport this week when I was in the Bay. Totally worth a visit.
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:03 AM   #6
alex1170
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Originally Posted by Maddevill View Post
Let me know when you get a P-51...

Mad
Let ME know when I get a P-51... because at several millions acquisition cost and $3000 an hour, I ain't holding my breath. Hahaha


Cheers,

Alex
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:04 AM   #7
alex1170
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Originally Posted by KrustyKruser View Post
So awesome!! I'm sure I could split a few $150 hours for that after tax time.
She awaits your company!

Cheers,

Alex
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:05 AM   #8
alex1170
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Originally Posted by norcalkid View Post
Looks fun

Went to the air museum at San Carlos airport this week when I was in the Bay. Totally worth a visit.
That it is. I've gone there a few times at the behest of the museum to show the plane off during their youth camps.

Cheers,

Alex
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Old 12-30-2017, 08:33 PM   #9
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What does a P-51 burn up besides fuel to the tune of $3000/hr? (And I'm sure it's voracious on fuel...) Just curious.
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Old 12-30-2017, 09:51 PM   #10
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Parts made of Unobtanium.
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Old 12-30-2017, 10:34 PM   #11
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Be there, done that. Awesome!

DSC_0004-2 by Bob Rowlands, on Flickr" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; width: auto\9;">

DSC_0050_DxO by Bob Rowlands, on Flickr" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; width: auto\9;">

Last edited by bmwbob51; 12-30-2017 at 10:36 PM..
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:31 PM   #12
alex1170
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Originally Posted by berth View Post
What does a P-51 burn up besides fuel to the tune of $3000/hr? (And I'm sure it's voracious on fuel...) Just curious.
It's pretty much everything. All planes have a rough hourly operating cost, based on how much engine overall, annual and periodic inspections, fuel and oil consumption, insurance, and parking (I might have missed a couple of things, but those are the big ones). Factor them all together, and you get how much you should pay for every hour that the plane is running. A good portion of that money goes into a fund that's maintained for when the big ticket maintenance comes up.

The engine is the single biggest expense of the lot - one quote out there puts the overhaul cost of a Merlin engine at $125,000 every 700 hours, and that's just the overhaul; by comparison, the Pratt & Whitney R985-AN-1 in our BT-13 is overhauled for less than half that ($50,000) at nearly the double the hourly figure (1200 hours). The required inspections aren't cheap either, with the yearly one likely in the high 5-figures if not more; Cessnas can be done for a grand or so.

I think the lowest hourly cost I heard for a P-51 these days was around $2200. Chances are that particular guy had the skills and the tools to do at least some of his own maintenance.


Cheers,

Alex
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:32 PM   #13
alex1170
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Originally Posted by bmwbob51 View Post
Be there, done that. Awesome!

DSC_0004-2 by Bob Rowlands, on Flickr" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; width: auto\9;">

DSC_0050_DxO by Bob Rowlands, on Flickr" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; width: auto\9;">
Yeah..... I hate you. Hahaha
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Old 01-02-2018, 01:41 PM   #14
Maddevill
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I used to work on some Merlin parts when I was at Savage Magneto at the Oakland airport. Them things were just BEAUTIFUL....
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Old 01-02-2018, 01:48 PM   #15
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Ahh yes, dropping mags off at Savage and then running over to Quinn's to rummage through his piles.
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