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Thread: 223 Squadron Liberator TS532 - B-24D or B-24J...?

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    Default 223 Squadron Liberator TS532 - B-24D or B-24J...?

    Hello everyone

    I'm trying to unravel a mystery about R.A.F. Liberator TS532 6G-N of 223 Sqn.

    Here are two links to a couple of photos of 223 Sqn Liberator TS432 6G-N on Flickr:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/oldbuc...-e162c8-bFTJTF

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/oldbuc...-e1bGms-7HQk8J

    It's captioned as a B-24J, U.S. serial number 42-40380. However, the book "Special Ops Liberators" by Steve Bond and Richard Forder lists it as B-24J-160-CO, ex 42-40350 of the 861st BS/493 BG. To add to the confusion, it seems that U.S serial number is from a batch of B-24D-53-CO aicraft:

    http://www.joebaugher.com/usaf_serials/1942_2a.html

    So, is 42-40380 possibly 44-40380, a B-24J-160-CO:

    http://www.joebaugher.com/usaf_serials/1944_4.html

    44-40380 was formerly 'Kentucky Kloudhopper' which "flew 3 combat missions with the 493rd BG before being transferred to the 803rd BS (Composite) and thence to the RAF 100 Group." See photo and details here:

    http://www.americanairmuseum.com/aircraft/19659

    Obviously if this is TS532's earlier incarnation, it had a new oval-shaped blister window installed to replace the smaller rectangular one in this photo.

    To further muddy the waters, on the rear quarter view photo on Flickr the serial on the fin reads 240380 - is this simply a mis-applied serial on the fin?

    I have a copy of the book "Consolidated Mess" by Alan Griffith and wondered if it's a was possibly a B-24D with a nose conversion, or is in fact simply a B-24J with an identity crisis?

    Regards

    Simon
    Last edited by wwrsimon; 16th August 2018 at 09:48.

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    Hi Simon,

    Air Britain Liberator book lists TS532 as 44-40380 B-24J-160-CO or Liberator B.IV and confirms ex 861BS/493BG. Robertsons serials says it was from a batch of 21 built by Consolidated, some as C.IV and others like TS532 as BIV, but definitely built that way. This not quite right as was one of 21 transferred from USAAF.

    Special Ops Liberators has several apparent gremlins and on page 228 lists it as 44-40350 just to add to the permutations.

    As for the painted serial it is not uncommon to find confusion in this area in removing the year numbers and getting the result wrong.

    regards Peter
    Last edited by PeterColwill; 16th August 2018 at 14:18.

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    Thank you Peter. I was 99.9% sure it was indeed 44-40380, but with all the confusing sources to hand, couldn't be 100% sure.

    Regards

    Simon

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    Hello

    On U.S.A.A.F. machines, it was standard practice not to paint the first digit of the fiscal year, only the second, and no hyphen. Hence 44-40380 would normally appear painted 440380 on the fins. But a painting error is always possible.

    Joss

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    Hello,
    AB's RAF Serial book SA100-VZ999 has on page 49
    21 Consolidated Liberator VIs delivered between August and October 1944.
    TS532 - 223 - Soc 14.12.45.

    AB's The British Air Commission and Lend-Lease has on page 85
    RCM Liberator VI( B24H,J) Transferred under MAC Air Case No.700.
    2 Consolidated B-24J off AC- 40033: 44-40380, -40457(would be 44-40457).

    It could be that the Tail section on the a/c was replaced by one from 42-40380 before transfers to the RAF ?

    Alex

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