Monday, April 17, 2017

April XP-82 Twin Mustang Restoration Newsletter

Wing Tips
After what seemed like forever, the forming and welding of the seams on the two wing tips are now completed with the exception of their final spot welding.  The Lucite (Plexi-glass) red and the green lens that cover each tip light bulb still need to be formed.

Left-hand wing tip with tip light mount

 Right-hand wing tip with tip light mount and three holes for identification lights

Tail and Wing Fairings
The left and right horizontal-to-vertical stabilizer fairings are now complete, less the welding on the leading edge seams. They have a unique mounting. Each fairing screws horizontally to the vertical stabilizer and dorsal panel, but only rub on a thin phenolic strip mounted on the upper and lower surfaces of the horizontal stabilizer without any vertical attaching screws.

Left-hand (above) and right-hand (below) horizontal-to-vertical
fairings prior to welding the seams

The forming of the fuselage-to-wing/center section and trailing edge fairings has just been started.

Top Cowlings for Right-hand Engine
The right-hand top cowl for the right-hand engine has now finally been reworked, fit and drilled to the internal framework. The left-hand top cowl is still presenting such a challenge that we think we will have to remake the entire panel. It has been quite a frustrating job to try to correct these two top panels.

Original WWII Radios
The final radio receiver, a BC-966-A, has been installed completing our entire radio package. We also found an rare detonator switch that upon a very high G-force crash sends a signal to an explosive charge mounted in each radio that destroys the radios so an enemy cannot gain any knowledge. Of course all of our radios have had these charges removed.

 BC-966-A Receiver

 Detonator impact switch

We also have original Cannon plug connectors for each radio that still need to be wired for authenticity. 

The latest Garmin radio and avionics package is being installed as we speak.

Carburetor Air Temperature Control Motors
These two motors with their microscopic armatures, field windings, micro-switch wiring, 90 degree gearing and switch rollers are almost complete. The left-hand motor has been finished for about two weeks now.  We should have the final backlash fitting of the two 90 degree gears in the right-hand motor completed next week and both motors finally installed in the engine compartments. 

 Screen-printed Panels
All of the screen-printed panels have now been fitted with their switches, rheostats, lights, push buttons, etc., and mounted in their respective positions in each cockpit.

 Left cockpit flap handle, aileron trip, landing light switch, rudder trim,
elevator trim and gear handle

Right-hand radio channel selector/emergency gear up-lock
release pull handle in right cockpit

Bendix Radio Remote Tuning Unit MN-28-C. The red handle is the
emergency landing gear up-lock roller(s) and gear door hook(s) releases
(Pilot's cockpit)

Pilot's main breaker panel

Co-pilot's breaker panel

Pilot's left-hand switch panel

Co-pilot's left-hand switch panel

Gear Retractions
I chose to make two special steel mounting plates that attach with internal wrenching bolts to and through each lower wing attach angle.  Each jack mounting plate has two male sockets, one for jacking the aircraft for retractions adjacent to the center section main spar, and a second one for the weight-and-balance pick-up point next to the main landing gear. Both steel mounting plates are removable after the retractions and weight-and-balance calculations. 

We have now filled the XP-82 hydraulic system with 14 quarts of Mil H 5606 hydraulic fluid, and we are proceeding with the gear retractions.

Much time is being spent adjusting the twelve push-pull rods which activate each inboard gear door forward and aft up-lock hooks along with the emergency up-lock release and hook pull cables.

Happy Easter from the Easter Bunny. Strange how she looks so much like our Allison.




  1. Thanks so much again for the updates. Look forward to them every month. Happy Easter to the crew and Allison!

  2. Thank you for keeping us informed. I have always had a special interest in your XP-82 project. I have been a long time member of the Arizona Wing of the CAF. I was there at CAF Headquarters in Harlingen TX. When the Pilot ( Name withheld ) ran the CAF F-82 out of air speed and crash landed her folding the gear up and tearing up both props. I know the whole history of what happened from 1987 on with that Mustang including the battle with the Air Force Museum at Dayton. We can talk about that one another day. Any way, keep up the good work and I hope to see her flying again soon. Thank you and let's keep em flying. Pat