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Thread: Aluminum Overcast?

  1. #1
    The Boss's Avatar
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    Shocked Aluminum Overcast?

    Does anyone know the status of the "Aluminum Overcast?" A couple months ago, during a routine preflight inspection (Florida), a fitting inside the wing of B-17 'Aluminum Overcast' was found to show signs of fatigue (hopefully not a main spar). As a result, the B-17 Flying Fortress was grounded pending a full inspection that determined that replacing the part was necessary.
    Robert "Bob" Ferguson, EAA #1228198
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Boss View Post
    Does anyone know the status of the "Aluminum Overcast?" A couple months ago, during a routine preflight inspection (Florida), a fitting inside the wing of B-17 'Aluminum Overcast' was found to show signs of fatigue (hopefully not a main spar). As a result, the B-17 Flying Fortress was grounded pending a full inspection that determined that replacing the part was necessary.

    The announcement about the problem was just 5 weeks ago. I would assume that about all they have been able to do is gather up some of the data needed and convened a few of the top B-17 guys to make an assessment of what has failed and are working on the why it failed. When you don't have all the factory support and engineering experience and records at hand, it takes a little while to do the analysis. Depending on the specifics, it may be after Oshkosh before there is a clear path to returning her to flight. There are a number of guys out there that have the capability to build/rebuild a wing or center section as needed, but it will take some significant time and maybe some big expenses, depending on what all is found.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigCantwell View Post
    The announcement about the problem was just 5 weeks ago. I would assume that about all they have been able to do is gather up some of the data needed and convened a few of the top B-17 guys to make an assessment of what has failed and are working on the why it failed. When you don't have all the factory support and engineering experience and records at hand, it takes a little while to do the analysis. Depending on the specifics, it may be after Oshkosh before there is a clear path to returning her to flight. There are a number of guys out there that have the capability to build/rebuild a wing or center section as needed, but it will take some significant time and maybe some big expenses, depending on what all is found.
    No doubt. But I think the intent of the first post was a plea for information. Certainly EAA has enough info to share. e.g: "Here are the specifics of what we found. Here is our working plan. Here is what we're still trying to pin down. Everything is subject to change if we come up with a better plan."

    Ain't hard to communicate that type information.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle Boatright View Post
    No doubt. But I think the intent of the first post was a plea for information. Certainly EAA has enough info to share. e.g: "Here are the specifics of what we found. Here is our working plan. Here is what we're still trying to pin down. Everything is subject to change if we come up with a better plan."

    Ain't hard to communicate that type information.
    Thank you Kyle. This is exactly what I was looking for.
    Robert "Bob" Ferguson, EAA #1228198
    President/Flight Coordinator EAA 78
    EAA-The Spirit of Aviation
    Phone: 267.243.5198
    eaachapter78@gmail.com
    https://chapters.eaa.org/eaa78
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/eaachapter78/

    You can always go from nice to mean.
    But you can NEVER go from mean to nice.
    BE KIND to ONE ANOTHER!

  5. #5
    EAA Staff / Moderator Elayna Hall's Avatar
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    Hi Bob, thanks for checking in! As you know, our tour team discovered a fitting inside the wing that showed signs of fatigue. The full inspection that was conducted determined that replacement of the part is necessary for safe operations. It should be relatively easy to fix but unfortunately it is in a difficult area that is hard to get to which will make the repair a timely process. Just like you, we are eager to getting the B-17 ‘Aluminum Overcast’ flying again but want to make sure we give the repair the attention and resources it needs to get it done right. At the moment our resources are focused on AirVenture as it is less than 60 days away.
    The airplane will remain in Florida at this time until a repair schedule is finalized. We do not currently have a final timeline for those repairs, but will keep everyone updated as additional information becomes available via the B17.org website and other channels.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elayna Hall View Post
    Hi Bob, thanks for checking in! As you know, our tour team discovered a fitting inside the wing that showed signs of fatigue. The full inspection that was conducted determined that replacement of the part is necessary for safe operations. It should be relatively easy to fix but unfortunately it is in a difficult area that is hard to get to which will make the repair a timely process. Just like you, we are eager to getting the B-17 ‘Aluminum Overcast’ flying again but want to make sure we give the repair the attention and resources it needs to get it done right. At the moment our resources are focused on AirVenture as it is less than 60 days away.
    The airplane will remain in Florida at this time until a repair schedule is finalized. We do not currently have a final timeline for those repairs, but will keep everyone updated as additional information becomes available via the B17.org website and other channels.
    Thank you Elayna
    Robert "Bob" Ferguson, EAA #1228198
    President/Flight Coordinator EAA 78
    EAA-The Spirit of Aviation
    Phone: 267.243.5198
    eaachapter78@gmail.com
    https://chapters.eaa.org/eaa78
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/eaachapter78/

    You can always go from nice to mean.
    But you can NEVER go from mean to nice.
    BE KIND to ONE ANOTHER!

  7. #7

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    Any chance EAA could book one of the other ride B-17's? Maybe one of the CAF's. Oshkosh won't the same without Aluminum Overcast overhead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Samuel View Post
    Any chance EAA could book one of the other ride B-17's? Maybe one of the CAF's. Oshkosh won't the same without Aluminum Overcast overhead.
    That'll never happen my friend. EAA survived the COVID-19 Plandemic BS, I'm sure they'll survive this issue.
    Robert "Bob" Ferguson, EAA #1228198
    President/Flight Coordinator EAA 78
    EAA-The Spirit of Aviation
    Phone: 267.243.5198
    eaachapter78@gmail.com
    https://chapters.eaa.org/eaa78
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/eaachapter78/

    You can always go from nice to mean.
    But you can NEVER go from mean to nice.
    BE KIND to ONE ANOTHER!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by The Boss View Post
    EAA survived the COVID-19 Plandemic BS
    We need an eyeroll emoticon.

  10. #10

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    I think there is a possibility there could be two B-17's on the field during Oshkosh, which would be way cool!! Also Chris Henry will be doing a presentation on Aluminum Overcast which will be cool.

    https://www.eaa.org/eaa/event/B-17_A...5F5630647BD62E

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