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Thread: What constitues a warbird?

  1. #1
    kscessnadriver's Avatar
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    What constitues a warbird?

    I've got a somewhat basic question, that I thought the warbird folks might be able to help with. Say a foreign military operated a specific model of aircraft and here in the States they were a civilian aircraft. If one would go back and apply the exactly paint scheme and design to the aircraft, how would the warbird community view it? Warbird replica or what?

    Thanks.
    KSCessnaDriver
    ATP MEL, Commercial Lighter Than Air-Airship, SEL, CFI/CFII
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  2. #2
    FlyingRon's Avatar
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    Depends which warbird community you ask. Some will consider a plane a warbird only if it that particular airframe was owned by the military at some point.
    Some will consider it a warbird if the design has been used by the military even if the particular airframe has not. For instance, many of the L-17's you see at Airventure do not fit the first definition. The only way you can tell if they are "real" L-17's is to look up the serial number records. They are indistinguishable otherwise from a civilian Navion that has been painted up to match.

    The Airventure judging criteria is as follows:

    Warbird Aircraft:
    All ex-military aircraft. This specifically means an aircraft that was operated by
    the military of any country. This excludes civilian equivalents of military aircraft,
    or developmental aircraft that have never been operated in a military capacity.

  3. #3

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    What about the civil aircraft that were donated to the war service and used here as costal patrol ? My 24 was in this category 1941-1946.

  4. #4
    kscessnadriver's Avatar
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    Good to hear something. I'd really like to own a Stinson 108 at some point and have more than once entertained the thought of painting it up to the Spanish Air Force paint scheme they used in the late 1940's.
    KSCessnaDriver
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  5. #5
    steveinindy's Avatar
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    The only thing I know that gets more grief (or at least points and snickers) from the warbird owners I've dealt with are the RVs and the like painted with "military" liveries.

  6. #6
    kscessnadriver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steveinindy View Post
    The only thing I know that gets more grief (or at least points and snickers) from the warbird owners I've dealt with are the RVs and the like painted with "military" liveries.
    But if it is an actual model of aircraft that did serve with a military and is painted to reflect that, its not as looked down upon?
    KSCessnaDriver
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  7. #7
    steveinindy's Avatar
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    Not so far as I have heard. I mean, there are a lot of the "L-birds" that are painted up that were nowhere near the combat zone and so long as the person with it isn't trying to paint it as having been, then there doesn't seem to be too much of a problem. But then again, I don't know for certain.

  8. #8

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    If you want to paint your plane to look like a warbird, by all means do it! Don't worry about what others think, its your plane and to heck with the one's that THINK they are better just because they can own a warbird. Not can afford or will get the oppertunity to own a true warbird. As posted already, as long as you are not trying to impress it on others that it is a warbird, no harm done. Not much bothers me more than some ignorant 'well off' person trying to flaunt their fortunes in life.
    If it makes you happy to own 'your own little warbird' then do it.

    Some of those Rv's etc. that are painted like warbirds are owned and flown by ex-military pilots wanting to remember their past lives and are a tribute.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by WWhunter View Post
    If you want to paint your plane to look like a warbird, by all means do it! Don't worry about what others think, its your plane and to heck with the one's that THINK they are better just because they can own a warbird. Not can afford or will get the oppertunity to own a true warbird. As posted already, as long as you are not trying to impress it on others that it is a warbird, no harm done. Not much bothers me more than some ignorant 'well off' person trying to flaunt their fortunes in life.
    If it makes you happy to own 'your own little warbird' then do it.
    +1. And if you want to wear a flight suit and helmet or leather jacket, patches, scarf and goggles, go for it. Why do we worry what others might think?

  10. #10

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    Just about everything gets to be a "warbird" sooner or later. There was a Vietnamese flight school next door to my unit on Nha Trang AFB. They were equipped with USAF U-17s. They were pretty much stock Cessna 185s with VNAF markings on a USAF paint job. And they were flown hard every day in a combat zone.

    Bob

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