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MG TD TF 1500 - Aircraft collection

Friends of mine are in Niagara from Seattle and as he is a pilot I called a company with a rather unique collection... we were invited to visit the hanger and have a tour...
The Hurricane and BF109 were both flown during the Battle of Britain, the Spit didn't see action.
Thought you might like to see a few closeup shots...(I posted photos of these flying a couple of years ago).
(I understand there is a 109'G' now flying in Washington state, this is an 'E', the only flying example in the world!)

gblawson - TD#27667


Thanks for the photos! Those are excellent pictures. We were in Palm Springs in February 2006 and visited the Air Museum there. I think that you would really enjoy the selection of flying aircraft they have. We were lucky enough to be there when they flew three different aircraft including a Harvard and Hellcat.

Brian Smith time I get to your area I would love to see those aeroplanes. I grew up in England during WW 2 and lived very close to Hornchurch, one of the fighter bases in Essex. As kids we used to go over and watch the scrambles and returns. We also observed many dogfights with the enemy as they strafed the gas works in the town of Romford.
This weekend I went Willow Run airshow that featured thirteen B-25. Quite a sight as they all flew over in formation. What was missing, was a few WW2 Brit. planes and the 109 E that was featured a few yeas ago.

Colin Stafford


If you're ever in Flordia, be sure to visit Fantasy of Flight in Polk City. It's about 40 miles south west of Orlando. It's well worth the trip. Everything in the collection is in flying condition and the variety of planes is mind boggling. To name just a few,tTwo Mustangs, a Spitfire, a Grumman Wildcat, two tri motors, two Gee Bees, a couple of Corsairs, a Super G Constellation no name only a few. Look them up on the internet and you can see a list of aircraft they have on display.

Also sorry we didn't make the Queeston Picnic but that was our grandsons graduation. From the photos I've seen it must have been great day. Our group (MG Car Club, Western NY Centre) all said they had a great time.

George Herschell
George R Herschell

Had a B-17 at an airport using airport transfers sevenoaks about 60 miles from here last weekend that I really wanted to take a flight on. Didn't have enough notice to make it happen. The $ 425.00 for 20 minutes would have been a little steep but how many times are you going to get the chance? I think I spent $75.00 for a 15 minute flight in a Bell bubble with my son at Mt. Rushmore 15 years ago. Worth every penny when I saw my son turn green when the pilot took it up to a juddering stall and turned it back over nose down.


George H is sure right about Fantasy of Flight. I go there every couple years, and in fact drove past it this Sunday- about 10 miles from my house. Fabulous collection. Where else in the world are there 40 NOS Allison V-12(?) aircraft engines? There is also a V-1 buzzbomb, a P-51, one of about every kind of aircraft motor ever made, etc. A must see if ever in central Fla. George B
George Butz

George B,

Have you been to the new Smithsonion Air and Space near Dulles Airport? It opened a number of years ago and if you are ever in the area, don't miss it. We went the year after it opened and it blew my mind to see what and how much they had and all indoors. Would you believe a Space Shuttle indoors along with the Enola Gay? Too many planes to list and I would be afraid I would miss something if I tried. Fantastic facility and well worth the trip if you're in the area sometime.

George Herschell
George R Herschell

Was chatting with the wife of the owner and she mentioned that they had the Memphis Belle at the last show in June... it got stuck in the grass airstrip and had to be pulled out with a tank... It is an annual affair and is quite amazing!!!!
gblawson - TD#27667

The Kansas Cosmosphere in Hutchinson, KS has both a V-1 and V-2 on display. One of the few museums in the world that has both. Among all their other artifacts, they also have the real Apollo 13 and Liberty Bell 7. Both are restored. Quite a museum.
John Masters

If you intend to go to the Fantasy of Flight purchase your tickets through AAA as they are $5-6 cheaper. It is a must see.
Sandy Sanders
Sandy Sanders

The fellow that owns the aircraft in Niagara won a huge settlement from Disney over some court case that gave him the money to buy the aircraft. He didn't have a pilots license when he started the collection, but bought a tiger moth, and a Harvard to get the experience he needs to fly the spit etc. I don't know if he had done so yet, but some lucky fellow gets to fly his spitfire around for him. One of my all time fantasies is to fly a spitfire, best looking aircraft ever built in my opinion. Besides MG's, flying my RV4 (image below) uses up just about all my play time money!!

J.D. Hine

Your right... he is an architect and worked with Disney (think it was Epcot) and they decided to end the contract... seems they used all his designs without permission... the lawsuit was for 250M...they settled for less, but whatever it was, it built/bought the collection/airport/land/etc!
Don't think he has flown it/them except the Harvard (Texan)!
gblawson - TD#27667

George H, I'll put the new Smithsonian museum on my list. I did get to go through the San Diego air and space museum a couple years ago- it was good also. George
George Butz

While in Florida evryone should see the Naval Air museum at Pensacola. I is relatively small but it is well represented.
Sandy Sanders

If you are a aeroplane lover go the Wright Patterson
AFB in Dayton, OH. Outstanding.
Colin Stafford

you guys have named quite a few. i have been to each one named, but there is one i have not seen and is not yet listed here. it would be a tough drive in our T-cars, but the new pearl harbor aviation museum on ford island looks to be interesting. there is also a nice museum on hartfords bradley field airport. the new england air museum. in addition it is only days away from the largest civilian airshow in the world...oshkosh wisconsin's airventure. a lot of V-12 rolls engines there. music to your ears they are. regards, tom
tm peterson

If you're into aviation the Museum of Flight in Seattle is well worth a visit. Here's a link to their collection - If you go, don't forget to go across the street where you can walk through a Concorde and the old Air Force One.
Bob Farnam

Someone in Seattle has a private collection worth 'gazillions', that is where the BF109'G' is and will be/is flying!
gblawson - TD#27667

Gord.....that Memphis Belle you talked about is not the actual plane that was in combat, but it is the one they used in the movie. It was at the show last weekend.
As for going to that Comosphere in KS, I've seen too many actual V-1 Buzz Bombs flying by and our house got "blown up" by a V-2 in 1945. Don't go near those things.

Colin Stafford

"If you are a aeroplane lover go the Wright Patterson
AFB in Dayton, OH. Outstanding."

I'll be there on the 19th with my Boy Scout Troop! :)

I agree with Sandy, the one in Pensacola, FL is great. Whenever we are in Gulf Shores, AL my Dad & I drive over for the day. Lots to see.

The National Museum of Naval Aviation:
Carl Floyd

When I was manager at Start Your Engines in Maryland for Moss, I became friends with a man named Jack Schaller. He was retired USAF and had joined when it was still called the Army Air Corps. He flew 17's in England during WWII.

The Smithsonian hadn't opened their new museum, but Jack used his influence to get me into what was called the Garver Facility. They had some planes under restoration, but there were hangars full of dusty and fascinating old relics. Jack also did really first rate restorations on TD's.

There are two B-17's that visit Santa Barbara on a pretty regular basis. They're named "Aluminum Overcast" and "Sentimental Journey". A few years ago, I bit the bullet and put $375 on a credit card for a ride. I guess the price has gone up since then. Anyway, it was totally worth living on Mac and Cheese for a couple of months.

The Pima Air Museum in Tucson is also fascinating. It sits at the edge of several hundred acres of mothballed military planes.

I'll attempt to upload a picture from the web. I hope Brian doesn't mind that I shared a copyrighted picture.

Craig Cody

Craig, The Sentimental Journey was the plane that flew in near here. They had to have at least 5 people to do the flight. I suspect thats about the break even point for the cost of the fuel. Just wish I had more notice about the event. Do you know anything about the planes at Victorville east of LA. ? I'm always amazed at how small a WWII bomber looks next to an modern fighter.


Back in the 60s, the TV show, 12 O'clock High was filmed in part near our home at the Orange County Airport, which is now John Wayne Airport. Seeing B17 in the air was not unusual.
When Tora, Tora, Tora was filmed in southern California, the Santa Anna Register had a picture of a formation of pseudo-Zeros on the front page titled, Japanese Attack??? I don't think they filmed much over land, but the planes flew over our home and may have landed at OCA. At the time, the Marines at nearby El Toro had F4s, so I was not too impressed with Zero mockups.

We have an air show locally every year in Geneseeo NY and it brings in a whole group of WW II planes. A number of years ago we were on the deck in the back yard and heard the sound of a "fleet" of airplanes and when we looked up there were three Zeros (real ones) flying in formation going to that show. It was a somewhat scary feeling seeing them overhead. Also we do see Mustangs quite often going to or from that show. There is nothing that matchs the sound of those WWII fighters.

George Herschell
George R Herschell

George... that air show is this weekend... they mentioned that their planes were going to attend!!! They are taking off tomorrow! Looks like it is the Huricane that will be there!
gblawson - TD#27667

Gordon;; In your photos of the Russel Group,Photo number one seems to have a multi-engined something in the back ground. any idea as to what it is. It has four white vertical stripes and a red drop cloth or so it seems.
Sandy Sanders
Sandy Sanders

Gordon, Regarding the Wings of Eagles show at Geneseeo

One of the WW I replica Fokkers (from Canada) just had a "crash" yesterday and will not be flying in the weekend events. The plane is damaged but the pilot survived with no inuries. I guess according to the news he had a power failure on take off and landed (rather harshly) in a nearby farmers field. The photos on the news showed the plane nose down on the ground with some damage to the nose and lower wings. To bad. Looked reallly nice in the photos and it's too bad it will not be participating.

One other Air "Museum" not to be missed is the
Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome in Rhinebeck NY. They put on an air show every Saturday and Sunday during the smummer months. I've been there a few times and it is well worth the visit. They also have a fantastic of collection WWI aircraft, tanks and vehicles and the shows are a riot. They do "bomb the field with bags of flour and do a lot of airplane machine gun firing. The best time to go is the last show of the season as they try to use up all the "bombs" and "ammunition".

George Herschell
George R Herschell

Sandy... the 'replica' lancaster is a huge prop they built to cover the orchestra/head table area when they have festivities....!!!! Its the front 15 feet or so!
gblawson - TD#27667

Anyone planning a visit to the AF Museum in Dayton on a Friday should sign up, months in advance, for the restoration shop tour. I volunteer there. As if trying to keep my TD in tip-top shape isn't enough, I'm working on the B-17F Memphis Belle. This is the real one that was on display in Memphis for almost sixty years. Should be another eight or more years until we're done. See picture of me in front of the aircraft. We've stripped most of the paint to inspect for corrosion. It'll be repainted again when we get close to completion.

Steve Markman

That is great Steve... what an honour.
Was coming home late today past our local airstrip and 5 WWI biplanes were coming in. Stopped and saw them refuel. Asked about the pilot who crashed and was told..."he's fact he is flying one of these planes"!
gblawson - TD#27667


Where were they headed? I was wondering what "route" they would use to get from Geneseo to the Niagara Falls area and beyond. I would assume it was not over the lake (Ontario) because if it were me I would want solid ground below me to land if necessary. The incident with the Fokker would make that very much prominent in my mind.

George Herschell
George R Herschell

All this talk of aircraft ...

I went to Bletchley Park the other week - where they did the Enigma code-breaking during WWII - and there was a Lancaster fly-past.

There's a short video of the Lancaster down the page - amongst a lot of other stuff about Bombe and Colossus.


David Wardell

George... Not sure where they are all from... last year about this time we saw 12 fly over in formation headed east (to the show)... I assume they follow 104 along the south shore of Lake Ontario (not sure where Geneseo is).
One(?) may be from the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum ( a must see) in Hamilton/Port Hope, Ontario.
gblawson - TD#27667

Every Fathers Day weekend, Bob Collings opens his collection of planes and automobiles in Stow, MA, to the public. I went for the first time and took my father, who was in the Army Air Corps during WWII (ground support team). The planes flying the Wings of Freedom Tour were not on the grounds, but the collection was overwhelming, none the less.

If you are within reach of Stow, MA, keep this in mind for next Fathers Day weekend.

Larry Shoer

That makes sense. Geneseeo is about 40 miles south west of Rochester so they could do the 104 route or follow the NY State Thruway. They would be only about 15 miles from the Thruway when they are in Geneseeo.

Thanks for the inof on the Museum also.

George R Herschell

This thread was discussed between 10/07/2007 and 18/07/2007

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