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Thread: Have any crated/buried aircraft ever been found?

  1. #1
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    Have any crated/buried aircraft ever been found?

    Hi,

    My first post here

    I joined this site as l suspect have many others for info on the Burma Spitfire dig.

    This has got me wondering have any WWII era planes or vehicles that were crated and buried ever been recovered?

    I remember as a child my uncle talked about a quantity of American Jeeps and motorcycles that were supposedly burried locally after the war and I guess many have heard similar stories.


    Nigel.

  2. #2
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    Welcome.

    You might like to read your way through this thread

    http://forum.keypublishing.co.uk/sho...=121850&page=3

    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

  3. #3
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    The Merlin that lives in the FAA museam in Somerset was dug up in its crate on site the digger driver who was doing work there told me himself so I
    guess its true.
    when you have excluded the impossible whatever remains however improbable must be the truth
    Baz owns the second best Spitfire Replica in the World.

  4. #4
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    Smile :) The Truth, and Nothing But...

    If the digger driver says so, it must be true...!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by nbaker View Post
    Hi,


    This has got me wondering have any WWII era planes or vehicles that were crated and buried ever found?

    Nigel.

    Strangely enough Nigel the answer is "perhaps".

    During WWII the Germans knowing it would be difficult to battle the British fleet on the surface due to inferior ships and port location recalled the success of WWI with submarines and decided to refine the methology and equipment. It was decided to blockade the Brits by intercepting cargo ships as the coasted in and sink them using a system called "Wolfpacks" groupings of submarines instead of single submarine attacks.

    To oppose this the Allies in a stroke of defense began to group the cargo ships into "convoys" for mutual protection and escorting.

    Of course this resulted in large sea battles with the submarines typically getting the upper hand during the start of the war. A shipping sank it became apparent that replacement ships were needed badly, enter the American hero/industrialist Henry Kaiser, who proceeded to produce Liberty and Victory ships through a systematic production line that stamped them out like sausages and saved the British bacon. But that's getting a little ahead of the story.

    During the height of cargo ship sinking it became clear to another individual named Howard Hughes that submarines were not suited to intercepting cargo planes so one solution was to build an Altantic crossing large cargo aircraft to ship supplies and troops. An added benefit would be a quicker transit time.

    Initially he paired with Henry Kaiser and both committed to the project which had to be produced out of non strategic materials. Henry later removed himself from the project but ultimately Mr. Hughes completed and flew (once, after the war, amid much controversy) what was called the HK-4, H-4, Spruce Goose.

    With the primary structure of wood this was quite a feat and frankly the material was not strong enough for the loads. I spoke with Glenn Odekirk (maybe spelled incorrectly) directly about this and he stated during the one flight the tail stabilizers both vertical and horizontal began to show signs of crushing on certain fittings. This information was not disseminated out to the public, but was the reason the aircraft was parked..... For future repair and modifications.... For an around the world flight.... For a Hughes produced "James Bond" type movie.... And then television series.... And then forgotten into the buried resources of Hughes Industries as they prursued helicopter manufacture, airline ownership, radar targeting systems, satellites, ect.

    The aircraft was largely forgotten in a humidity controlled sealed hangar for decades that was never viewed by the outside.

    And then one day it was dumped out to the public sector with little explanation other than it was to costly to store.

  6. #6
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    That was interesting for those who didn't know already, but I am unclear what relevance it has to the question asked.



    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

  7. #7
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    You might want to read the entire thread then again. The question was have any WWII aircraft been unearthed in packing crates.

    My answer was "perhaps" because although not in a packing crate this was an airframe that utterly disappeared then resurfaced under unexpected circumstance.

    PM me if you still do not understand and I will explain it at a lower level.
    Last edited by Peter; 22nd January 2013 at 23:55.

  8. #8
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    Smile Not Yet.

    The Goose was widely known about. That's just my 'lower-level understanding'.

    As far as burials are concerned, I'd be very hard-pressed to think of much worthwhile ever having been found. Mostly just junk buried because it was - er - just junk.
    There have been a few oddities. I think a couple of Daimler-Benz engines were found in a bricked-up cellar in Italy about fifteen years ago, but - buried in crates..? Not as I can recall. It's a nice thought, but thus far, it seems to be more fantasy than fact.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mono-plane View Post

    PM me if you still do not understand
    No it's fine thanks.

    It wasn't buried, it wasn't in a packing case, but to you it seems relevant. No problem.

    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

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    Well Moggy there is a whole big world out there that doesn't involve Spitfires and digging in holes.

  11. #11
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    R6915 turned up at Duxford, in a crate, just last month!

    Said crate may have been on the back of a lorry rather than dug up, but if the Spruce Goose counts....

  12. #12
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    I can see one in a big warehouse or stuffed at the back in some hangar storage in the likes of Russia..

    As for motorcycles in crates..
    This one was stunning, a dealer that didn't like selling his stock, so when he died and they went into the back of his shop





    More

    http://www.motorcycleclassics.com/bl...n-belgium.aspx

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mono-plane View Post
    Well Moggy there is a whole big world out there that doesn't involve Spitfires and digging in holes.
    Still on the spitfire agenda then

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mono-plane View Post
    The aircraft was largely forgotten in a humidity controlled sealed hangar for decades that was never viewed by the outside.

    And then one day it was dumped out to the public sector with little explanation other than it was to costly to store.
    Not really. Aviation fans knew about the aircraft and its location.
    It was unseen, but hardly a secret. In fact some people did see it during those years, but I can't recall any period photos of it. In fact, I knew a man who helped maintain it and other Hughes aircraft.

    After Hughes died it was put on public display by an entertainment group (not public sector) in a purpose built hangar not far from its original spot.

    It was later transferred/sold/donated to another museum.

    I'm with Moggy on this one....woodern aircraft wooden crates. Aside from that...
    Last edited by J Boyle; 22nd January 2013 at 17:37.
    There are two sides to every story. The truth is usually somewhere between the two.

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    Am I right in thinking there's a crated P-47N in a crate inside the B-36 at the Soplata farm?

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    OMG

    Quote Originally Posted by TonyT View Post

    As for motorcycles in crates..
    This one was stunning, a dealer that didn't like selling his stock, so when he died and they went into the back of his shop
    I'm drooling over that
    Last edited by Moggy C; 22nd January 2013 at 19:00. Reason: quote truncated

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    G'day there Mono-plane,

    Quote Originally Posted by Mono-plane View Post
    ..."Wolfpacks"..."convoys"...
    Thanks for the insights, I'm sure nobody here was aware of such fundamental facts of military history. Along with your acidic Snausages story, you've educated so many of us in the basics. For this, I humbly thank you.

    Oh, and thank you for pointing out the glorious superiority of pretty-much everything over the Spitfire. It does lend to giggles, given that the Mustang wouldn't have existed without the British Purchasing Commission, and it wouldn't have been first-rate without the Rolls-Royce Merlin, I wouldn't be going out to dinner on it just yet.



    Cheers,
    Matt
    Last edited by JollyGreenSlugg; 22nd January 2013 at 19:10.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JollyGreenSlugg View Post

    Oh, and thank you for pointing out the glorious superiority of pretty-much everything over the Spitfire. It does lend to giggles, given that the Mustang wouldn't have existed without the British Purchasing Commission, and it wouldn't have been first-rate without the Rolls-Royce Merlin, I wouldn't be going out to dinner on it just yet.



    Cheers,
    Matt
    No problem Matt, I'm here to educate. So much for even handed moderating eh Moggy?

    Anyway Matt, this may come as a surprise bit the Brits are back over here shopping again looking to pick up a few F-35 and along with replacements for a thing called a Nimrod.

  19. #19
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    Mono- pain

    Quote Originally Posted by Mono-plane View Post
    Well Moggy there is a whole big world out there that doesn't involve Spitfires and digging in holes.
    You might like to consider digging less holes for yourself on a forum that you have just joined


    Edit...soon we will have to rename this thread...

    Have any crated/buried members posts been found?
    Last edited by bazv; 22nd January 2013 at 20:16.

  20. #20
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    There was a crated Gannet found in a breakers yard near Godstone in Surrey. As I recall it went to the British Aerial Reserve but no idea what happened to it after that. I think the BAR disappeared in a fog of controversy but I can't remember what the story was.

    Does anyone else know anything about the breakers yard? A school friend used to pass it on the bus to school, always talking about the lumps of Airframe he could see.

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    There are several P-400 wings on woodlark Island(Guasopa)PNG, that were left there crated when the war ended. The crates have since rotted and they now rest on top of each other. I believe the remoteness of the location made burying or burning unnecessary.

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    Early on in the Iraq war, it was discovered that Saddam had buried a bunch of his MiG's in the desert, to keep them out of the hands of the coalition forces. He didn't bother to crate them up. He just covered them in sand. At that point they were rendered useless, but then he was a sociopath, so what do you expect?

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    830 Nortons

    Having ridden 830 Commandos i would say the dealer was doing all real riders a favour!!!!! Unless they were shimmed up right they snaked like *******s. They should still be buried!!!! I know it says 850 but they were really 830.

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    I guess the real question is has there been any recovered aircraft in "buried" crates? Not trash from rubbish tips or salvage yards. Aircraft in swamps/oceans/lakes/rivers/jungle/on hills/in ravines yes.

    There was of course the P-40 dug up in Canada by John Paul and company many moons ago but it was land fill by a farmer.

    We've had the crates in the ocean, crates in caves, crates in the jungle now crates in Burma. To my knowledge allowing for hundreds of aircraft moved in "crates" non seem to have "surfaced" in more than 60+years. Mmmmmmm

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    "During the height of cargo ship sinking it became clear to another individual named Howard Hughes that submarines were not suited to intercepting cargo planes so one solution was to build an Altantic crossing large cargo aircraft to ship supplies and troops".

    Not that I'm doubting the integrity of Mr Hughes, but wouldn't it have been better to design a "land based" cargo plane, so as to completely negate the sub-marine threat?
    " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

  26. #26
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    I think Hughes was looking to the Pacific war, where airfield were few, but water was plentiful. The Japanese made a lot of use of their flying boats for supply missions, H6K and H8K versions.

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    Pacific.

    Quote Originally Posted by cambsman64 View Post
    I think Hughes was looking to the Pacific war, where airfield were few, but water was plentiful. The Japanese made a lot of use of their flying boats for supply missions, H6K and H8K versions.
    That the Goose was designed for the Pacific war was my firm recollection too.

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    There were all the Skyraider radial engines still in their shipping containers on the dockside in Vietnam, they were off loaded in the final days so refugees could board and simply left on the key side.

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    Quote Originally Posted by knifeedgeturn View Post
    "During the height of cargo ship sinking it became clear to another individual named Howard Hughes that submarines were not suited to intercepting cargo planes so one solution was to build an Altantic crossing large cargo aircraft to ship supplies and troops".

    Not that I'm doubting the integrity of Mr Hughes, but wouldn't it have been better to design a "land based" cargo plane, so as to completely negate the sub-marine threat?
    The main reason for a flying boast was that it did not need an airfield, building a runway for a beast like that would be a mile long. I do not think there was a runway any where in the world long enough to land or take off the Goose.
    when you have excluded the impossible whatever remains however improbable must be the truth
    Baz owns the second best Spitfire Replica in the World.

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    Lightbulb Naa..

    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Adlam View Post
    The main reason for a flying boast was that it did not need an airfield, building a runway for a beast like that would be a mile long. I do not think there was a runway any where in the world long enough to land or take off the Goose.
    Er, no. It may have been in part because it didn't need an runway, however, plenty of Second World War era runways were a mile long (If that was the take-off run indeed required...), even in Blighty. Today, LHR is about two miles long I think.

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