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56th FG Zemkes Wolfpack
The Outstanding P-47 Fighter Group Of WW2.
Researching "Hairless Joe"
Tomcat31
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 10:51 AM UTC
The serial looks to be higher up on the second photo as well
lampie
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 10:52 AM UTC
A couple of photos of the serial number close up.
Early

Late


Also, on the early paint scheme, the letter S on the fusalage was of the stencil type font.
After flak damage to that area on the port side ( you can see the hole in the S on the crash landing photo) it was repainted in the same style font as the LM letters.
I wonder if the starboard side retained the earlier stencil type S??

Hmmmmmm
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 10:54 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The serial looks to be higher up on the second photo as well



Yes it is, well spotted Allen.

Nige
PaddyBarratt
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 07:30 PM UTC
Pilot/crew chief stencil is different as well...
lampie
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 10:22 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Pilot/crew chief stencil is different as well...



Thats another subtle difference between the two.
The earlier crew panel is thought to read,
Crew
Pilot Lt Col D C Schilling
Chief S/Sgt J Holleman
Asst Sgt M Knudson

For whatever reason, this crew detail information changed as is seen on the later camo scheme.
The only definate change I know of at the moment is Schillings promotion to full Colonel on 1st October 1944. Investigation ongoing.
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 - 10:44 PM UTC
Heres the only other photo I can put a definate date to at the moment.
It was taken at a Fighter Group Commanders meeting at Bottisham on 31st August 1944.
Note the rocket tubes still fitted to Hairless Joe.

Another point of interest is the "follow me" jeep.
On the subject of rockets, heres a very rare photo of rockets being loaded on Hairless joe.

The distinctive shapes of the camouflage pattern identify this as Schillings P-47.
Nige
warlock0322
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Posted: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 - 02:07 AM UTC
I also see that there are No invasion stripes on the tops of the wings of any of the planes either, but the p-47's have the stripes on the fuselage as well as only some of the P-51's.

So much for uniformity in the Mighty 8th

Paul



davegee
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Posted: Thursday, April 02, 2009 - 01:01 PM UTC
One other interesting thing fueling the possible replacement wing controversy, or maybe not, is the pictures that show the right wheel hubcap red, and the left one is grey. Not sure why that was.
davegee
lampie
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Posted: Thursday, April 02, 2009 - 11:23 PM UTC
Hi Dave.
The wheel covers were often painted by ground crew as their own little personalisations.
Its interesting that the red wheel cover only seems to appear on photos of later Hairless Joe.
Another photo from that Group Commanders meeting at Bottisham on 31st Aug 1944, but this time a colour one. At first I thought it may be a colourised version of the b+w photo, but theres no "follow me" jeep in this photo.(shame,I'd like to have seen that! )
The book is dated 1970.

Slightly away from this particular discussion I know, but its interesting to note that Bennets book lists the 61st FS P-47M's as being painted "all black"

Where are all the starboard side photos of Hairless Joe? Theres got to be some somewhere.
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Friday, April 03, 2009 - 01:30 AM UTC
I though I had a copy of this photo somewhere but I cant find it as yet.
So, this link will have to do for now.
HAIRLESS JOE PAGE 70
Although as regards the paint scheme it doesnt show us anything we havent already covered, what it does show us quite clearly is the sheen from the airframe being highly polished.
Nige
davegee
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Posted: Monday, April 06, 2009 - 02:27 PM UTC
Hi Guys: regarding the white perpendicular stenciling on the propellers, although it isn't all that common, I did notice a similar stencilling on a B-17 photo of my father-in-law's crew as they stood next to the #3 prop on a Ham-Stand propeller. But on other photos I have seen yellow stencilling running the direction of the prop, rather than across it as in these cases.

Davegee
lampie
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Posted: Monday, April 13, 2009 - 10:48 AM UTC
I've just returned from another trip to the 56th FG Museum at Halesworth, and in between sinking pints of Guinness with my mate Buzzy, I spent a few hours going through the hundreds of photos donated to the museum by various members of the 56th and their families over the years.
In amongst these fabulous photos, of which 99% have never been published, I came across three photos of Hairless Joe which have revealed some new info.
Unfortunately, Im not in a position to post them here , so you'll just have to take my word for it.

The first two were donated to the museum by Leslie Noyes, who was an electrician with the 56th.Incidentially, theres an excellent interview with him on the Timeless Voices Of Aviation site.
The first one shows Les perched on top of the engine cowling, and gives a fine close up of the noseart.
Interestingly, in his caption Les refers to Schillings aircraft as "Whack", which was also the name of one of his earlier P-47s which featured the same Dogpatch character.
The second photo gives us a close up of Les posing in the cockpit.
The later crew panel is visible and is tantalisingly just out out of focus, but I'm hoping to be able to match up the names to the records of enlisted men in the 56th soon.
Its "late" Hairless Joe, in addition to the black crosses with white borders scoreboard, it also shows Schillings 11 ground kills in white crosses. 3 rows of 3 and 2 on the last row.
This is between the crew panel and the main scoreboard.

Finally, while going through one of the last albums of the day, I came across a real gem!
Its a close up, taken from the left front side looking at the cockpit across the wing.
The crew panel is "early" Hairless Joe, and the black stencilled data shows the serial number clearly.
The scoreboard is partially obscured by the blast tubes but you can see two rows of 7 kills and at least 2 on the third row. This would date it late September, after the crash landing(Schilling made full Colonel first week in October).
But what makes this photo really special is the left wing.
Its NMF!
Proof ( in my book anyway) that the wing was changed post Sept 17th.
Schilling is in the cockpit in flying gear so its very possible that Hairless Joe may have flown ( either test flights or combat,who knows?) with an uncamouflaged wing!
Now that would make for an interesting variation to paint a model of "Hairless Joe".
Im sorry I cant post the pics at the present time, but if I get permission at some point I will certainly do so.
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Monday, April 13, 2009 - 12:18 PM UTC
Further to the previous post regarding the crew chief info panel on "later" Hairless Joe.
On the earlier panel, the names were painted in yellow.
On this later panel, the "Lt" part of Lt Col has been painted out, as has the earlier crew chiefs name.
The original "C Chief" remains, but painted in a darker colour is the new name of "E NAMOWICZ".
This is Edmund Namowicz who is named in the records of 62nd FS enlisted men.

Another small part of the puzzle solved.
Nige
stonar
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Posted: Wednesday, April 15, 2009 - 08:40 PM UTC
Yep,seen a copy of Nige's photo and the port wing is definitely a nice shiny NMF
Steve
rdriscoll
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Posted: Friday, April 17, 2009 - 06:52 AM UTC
Here's another photo (albeit low quality) from the original Aces and Wingmen (Danny Morris).

lampie
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Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 - 03:44 AM UTC
I'm very pleased to be able to post these next two photos.
Very special thanks to Buzz Took for permission.
Firstly, here we see Leslie Noyce in the cockpit of Hairless Joe.
Never seen before on photos are the white ground kill markings.


As if that wasnt enough, the answer to the wing change has been found.
Here we see Hairless Joe with a complete NMF left wing.
This is a photograph of a photograph, and on the original the serial number can be seen clearly.


The question this amazing photo raises is,,,did Schilling fly any combat missions with Hairless Joe in this condition?

These are without a doubt unique and historically important photographs of Schillings D-25.
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 - 04:17 AM UTC
It also looks from the photos as if Hairless Joe was fitted with the later K14 gunsight normally seen on the D-30 onwards.
Hard to tell but it certainly doesnt look like the earlier style gunsight.
Nige
lampie
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Posted: Wednesday, April 22, 2009 - 04:33 AM UTC
Heres a close up of the revised "late" Hairless Joe crew information.

Note that the "lt" has been removed when Schilling was promoted to full Colonel, and the new crew chief name of E NAMOWICZ roughly over painted.
Lastly for now, heres another of Les Noyce's snapsots which gives a very nice close up of the artwork on the cowling.

Again, its interesting to note that the photos refered to Hairless Joe as "Whack".
Nige
PaddyBarratt
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Posted: Wednesday, April 22, 2009 - 06:42 AM UTC
Great pics Nige
PaddyBarratt
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 02:59 AM UTC
With referance to the "whack" note on the photo I mailed a guy in the US who is up on these things and got this reply...

Hello Paddy, Schilling did indeed fly a razorback Jug with Whack on the nose. It was a cartoon of Hairless Joe swinging his mighty club with a burst of stars at the end, and the whack being the sound the club makes when it contacts. Hairless Joe was a character from the Lil Abner series of cartoons by Al Capp. During its hay day, the series was carried in hundreds of newspapers in the US. When the 56th first started to fly ops from UK, many of the birds carries Lil Abner nose art. Schilling seems to be the only pilot that stayed with it through most of the war. The plane that carries the whack nose art was also a dedication aircraft, inscribed on the port side to Woodmere, Long Island. Off hand I can't seem to recall the exact wording. Scghilling had also had bubbles installed on both sides of his canopy, ala Lancaster and Mosquito. I've seen one shot of this bird with iron cross kills, then another with regular Balkan cross victory marks. Some of these planes changed in appearance on an almost daily basis, it seems. Hope this answers your question, and feel free to call on me whenever you wish.

Hope that sheds a little light on "whack" :-)
lampie
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 03:35 AM UTC
Hi Paddy.
Many of the 62nd FS adopted Lil Abner characters.
Schillings first Razorback, 42-7938 was coded LM-S and it was indeed a presentation aircraft, "Hewlett-Woodmere, Long Island". It carried the name "Whack" and there are also photos of this aircraft with the name partially removed.
This aircraft ended up as formation monitor for the 306thBG at Thurleigh still bearing the noseart.



Your friends email is the first reference I've ever seen to Schilling having bubbles on his aircraft.

Nige
rdriscoll
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 05:58 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I'm very pleased to be able to post these next two photos.
Very special thanks to Buzz Took for permission.
Firstly, here we see Leslie Noyce in the cockpit of Hairless Joe.
Never seen before on photos are the white ground kill markings.


As if that wasnt enough, the answer to the wing change has been found.
Here we see Hairless Joe with a complete NMF left wing.
This is a photograph of a photograph, and on the original the serial number can be seen clearly.


The question this amazing photo raises is,,,did Schilling fly any combat missions with Hairless Joe in this condition?

These are without a doubt unique and historically important photographs of Schillings D-25.
Nige



This looks like a slightly different view:

rdriscoll
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 06:01 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Hi Paddy.
Many of the 62nd FS adopted Lil Abner characters.
Schillings Razorback, 42-7938 was coded LM-S and it was indeed a presentation aircraft, "Hewlett-Woodmere, Long Island". It carried the name "Whack" and there are also photos of this aircraft with the name partially removed.
This aircraft ended up as formation monitor for the 306thBG at Thurleigh still bearing the noseart.



Your friends email is the first reference I've ever seen to Schilling having bubbles on his aircraft.

Nige



Here is a screen capture from Victory Productions DVD:

Note the star on the wheel hub.
rdriscoll
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 06:03 AM UTC
Here is a view of a 56FG vehicle. You see the markings for the Group on the front bumper. Good reference for adding to a diorama.
Victory Productions DVD
rdriscoll
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Posted: Friday, April 24, 2009 - 06:04 AM UTC
Sorry, forgot the photo.