Republic P47-D-28-RA 42-29150
K4-S ‘Dottie Mae’ of 511FS, 405FG 9AF in WWII
Jack Croul, and all members of the restoration crew at Vintage Airframes are well aware of the historical significance of K4-S whereas there are a number of P-51 Mustangs with wartime experience during WWII, K4-S “DOTTIE MAE” 42-29150 is the only known P47 survivor with combat experience from the whole of the ETO (European Theatre of Operations).
Indeed we (collectively) understand the historical importance of 29150 K4-S “Dottie Mae” and plan (where possible & safe) to undertake the following:
A. To preserve as much of the existing airframe as possible. Parts that are in good airworthy condition are to be cleaned and reused, slightly damaged parts to be repaired, replacement hardware to be new old stock where possible and at the last resort non-existent impossible to find parts will be factory new.
B. New material to be clearly marked to assist in any future rebuild/restoration.
C. Document the restoration and preserve all original parts.
D. Retain all original paintwork, decals, significant and noteworthy stenciling.
E. Other fuselage skins bearing the names of the ground crew as well as “Dottie Mae” will be removed and displayed. These shall be replicated on new skins.
F. The original nose artwork has been preserved and will be on display in the future.
G. Stock restoration but retaining flak repairs and completing “K4-S” to as she was on the last mission in May 1945.
H. The R-2800, 18cyl engine has been rebuilt by Anderson Automotive in Idaho.
I. Eight .50 cal heavy machine guns and ammunition feeds to be re-installed.
J. Original instruments, gunsight and canopy.
K. Original skins to remain un-cleaned to preserve the patina of 90 missions. New skins to be weathered to match.
These are but a few of the items on the list, which ultimately will make this a challenging project unlike any other that we have done previously. In fact, what we believe will be one significant restoration opportunity in the warbird community today.
We as a team are most fortunate to have on board, a highly skilled and experienced craftsmen to see us through to completion, starting with Mike Breshears and his crew at Vintage Airframes in Idaho. While Mike is overhauling/restoring the airframe and metal work, components will simultaneously be removed for overhaul and rework/yellow tag.
We also would be remiss not to mention our friend Mark Sheppard in United Kingdom, who is our own, in house staff historian whom without, this project would not have the volumes of information and documentation that is so critical to preserving her future as well as validating her past.
Stay tuned & check back often.