Sunday Morning Planespotting, now with more fail.

**ears perk up at the sound of a radial engine**

**engine gets louder**

**goes outside expecting to see Stearman biplane**

**sounds get much, much louder**

**world’s only flying B-29, FiFi, goes cruising by at low altitude, posing for pictures, while my camera sits safely inside**

**cries a little because I missed the photo op**

**goes inside**

XBrad Family Theater-

XMom- “What kind of plane was that flying overhead?”

XBrad- “The world’s only flying B-29, FiFi. I didn’t have my camera.”

XMom- “Oh, I saw on the news last night it would be here today.”

XBrad- “Why didn’t you tell me?”

XMom- “I didn’t think you’d care.”


As I was running errands today, I lucked out and spotted FiFi making another pass.

FiFi over LaQuinta, CA


15 thoughts on “Sunday Morning Planespotting, now with more fail.”

  1. Gaaah. You should have left standing orders for the Mom of the Watch to inform you of all scheduled visits of vintage warplanes.

    1. As an added bonus, I just got back from the pool where I spotted a C-45/SNB, and an AT-6/SNJ. Round engines aside, some variant of the Extra aerobatic aircraft was also flying over the Indian Wells Tennis Gardens, but that’s an IO engine, so I don’t care.

  2. I am glad she is flying again. She was re=-engined (and re engineered because they had to design a slightly different cowling) – went flying….had engine trouble.

    Last I heard.

    Had a similar experience years ago.

    I am walking the dog in the morning as I always do. Heard the radial engines above me – and i knew it was something big.

    I expected a DC6 or something similar, and it was FiFi – 1,000 feet over me.

    Like you no camera.

    But I still have the memory.

    And while we are talking about missed photo opportunities the space shuttle flew over my house, with an GF15 escort, at low altitude.

    No camera.

    1. I used to be a docent at an aerospace museum, and (for its size) they had wonderful display of aircraft engines, old and new.

      Among them was a cutaway of a P & W R4360.

      Even the crankcase was sectioned – had to be assembled. To see those 28 cylinders all around the crankshaft, “corncob”, and all of each cylinder’s associated valve train, I mentioned to a visitor ‘Imagine having to overhaul one of those monsters”.

      To which he replied “I did”.

      You had to separate each cylinder on the bench, all with its associated supporting parts (dozens I assume).

      Anyway someone once played a joke on him, when the engine was nearly together someone put a small part – for one cylinder, on the bench.

      Now remember he had just meticulously assembled this monster and here is one small leftover critical part, from one of the 28 cylinders, but which one?

      Well, he was let in on the joke – but to look at engines such as the Wright Cyclone on FiFi, masters of piston technology.

  3. FiFi sometimes flies into Meacham Field in Fort Worth and I’ve seen her a couple of times at low altitude while I’ve been out on bike rides. An impressive sight.

  4. Took a tour through Fifi several years ago when it toured to our local aerodrome. They removed quite a bit of equipment in the original refirb, like the retract gear for the gun turrets, etc. The best part of the tour was an old farmer with our group who had been a Radio Operator flying out of Tinian. He corrected the tour guide a few times on some finer points. (Like decompressing the aircraft prior to the target, something his crew rarely did. Finally the guide let him tell his story, and requested he stay for some oral history recording.

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