Flt Sgt Copping's P-40 From The Egyptian Desert

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Having had a think on this: 1/ I believe it is not a physical model, when working with materials to represent something on a larger scale they don't look or behave the same. Having looked at the links on other postings they are obviously models. 2/ the lighting which if you have visited Africa you will know that the differences of an African sun which is surreal is correct. 3/ The environment that it is sitting on as has been pointed out is not the same as 70 years ago So this leaves the option is it a Photoshopped creation, as has been pointed out the level of informed detail is staggering. The technical knowledge of the 'alleged' modeller is brilliant. So you are looking for either a very well informed digital artist with a lot of time on his hands or it's real. I work in digital imaging and I know that you can achieve amazing results. But then you have to ask yourself why, so I'm putting my foot into the real camp. Whether it's a current picture I don't know.
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Well, if I was the RAF Museum, and someone had brought it to me, I would be keeping it quiet too, especially if there were any chance at all of recovering it. I am very much in the 'real' camp, with the caveat that they could be old (20 yrs+) pictures that are only now coming to light. With the very greatest of respect to the modellers; as good as those models are - and they far, far , far outclass my own skills, they still look like models. Pictures 4 + 5 both look real; very much so. Bruce
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P40E Love this discussion. P40's seem to have a tendency to turn during force landing, whether from small surface area (undercarriage pods and torque) I don't know. There are photos of P40's that have turned during crash landings as well as ones that have lost propellers and reduction gear. Not too worried on damage/location and lack of to engine cowlings. The radiator / cowl is well mangled as you would expect. As airframes were continually being recovered/recycled in north Africa the pilot would close the cockpit to reduce the amount of sand being blown in. No problem with this being closed. Photos 4/5 must be real though whether current is the main question. Must be a photo of someone standing by the P40. Thats what I would do and would show the fashion style/age of photo. If close to civilisation it would have been found long ago. If not, then must be a lost pilot and cannot believe he would have survived unless picked up by LRDG. Need more, driving me mad! Mark

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Got to be real, someone's nicked the clock. Always the first thing to go..
http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/9066/examplecps.jpg Incidentally photo knicked from ebay as an example: Gunsight, Clock and compass removed as happened when an aircraft force-landed and the Pilot survived with his wits intact.

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The rear fuselage shot would be technically very difficult to model. It would be easier to produce that section as a 100% scale piece of replica airframe and then damage it. That would take a lot of skill but isnt impossible. The time it would take to do all that would far outweigh the benefits and anyone who had the skill to do that wouldnt be working on a 'hoax' they would be earning good money doing sheet metal on flyers.
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P40E / Kittyhawk IA Additiinal discussion points. Looks like the airframe is from 260 SAAF. You can see the HS code to the left of the fuselage roundal. Codes were small which fits. Trying to 'see' if there is the remains of an individual letter on the right. There is a vertical bar but not sure this is just a filler line? Otherwise ID letter could be B, D, E, F, H, K, M, N etc - a few options. 260Sqn took over Kittyhawks in Feb 1942 and moved to Theatre. Least it is one squadron to look at! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Crashed_Kittyhawk_I_260_Sqn_in_NAfrica_1942.jpg regards Mark
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Mark typo is 260 Sqn RAF If anyone can ID the Type of Kittyhawk - we can get a better idea of dates 260 Sqn had Kittyhawk I, II Feb 1942 to May 1943 Kittyhawk III Dec 1942 to April 1944 Paul

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Faked....motive not known. Skill levels are very high for CGI. If it was real we would only hear about it after the recovery was in progress or already done. A model maker in Poland would be very aware of how much money this P40 could be worth and with a few hours web surfing contact a variety of potential buyers. When you read the saga of recovering the Hurricane from India you realise just how careful a buyer has to be. Its a minefield out there.
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Thanks Mark Buz Busby's (probably the worlds authority on the history of the P-40) comments on WIX are very interesting Paul

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Is there anyone on here who has connections within the RAF, to see if they have actually been asked to ID the aircraft ? Which department would be involved ?
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Libya or Egypt? I have a map reference from 20 or more years back in Egypt of a 'Spitfire' found by an Oil survey team. I had forgotten about that. They passed the details to the RAF Museum, who were not interested, who in turn passed them on to me. It is still extremely dangerous to swan around areas of Libya and Egypt because of the the uncharted minefields which they are still arguing who is going to pay for the removal. I bought this up when the Spitfire surfaced at the El Alamein museum but was advised to be very cautious. An 'adventure' outfit said it would take a three day round trip from Cairo to get me there and back with a minimum of two vehicles and I declined on the basis of cost and the probability of it being buried. I wonder if this could be the same aircraft. :) There was nothing visible on Google Earth. Mark
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P40E Of course to the lay person, everything with a roundal is a Spitfire! 20 years ago, if the photos had said 1982 or 92 I would believe it more. If one and the same and 20 years ago I would gues now long gone :( Mark
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260 Sqn "Kittyhawk I' bases Source Air Briatin Squadrons of the RAF Does not tell us much/if anything! Liby/ Egypt? but does indicate the fluidity of the war in the Desert, 33 bases in 16 Months! Benina 16 Jan 1942 LG 101 1 Feb 1942 LG 115 15 Feb 1942 Gasr el Arid 10 Mar 1942 Gambut 2 23 May 1942 Bir el Baheira 6 Jun 1942 LG 76 18 Jun 1942 LG 115 & LG 85 19 Jun 1942 LG 97 11 Jul 1942 LG 75 6 Nov 1942 Sidi Azeiz 10 Nov 1942 Gambut Main 12 Nov 1942 Gazala 15 Nov 1942 Martuba 4 17 Nov 1942 Belandah 10 Dec 1942 Marble Arch 19 Dec 1942 Gzina 21 Dec 1942 Hamralet 1 1 Jan 1943 Hamralet 3 4 Jan 1943 Bir Dufan 12 Jan 1943 Sedada 17 Jan 1943 Bir Dufan 19 Jan 1943 Castel Benito 23 Jan 1943 Sorman 7 Feb 1943 El Assa 14 Feb 1943 Ben Gardane 2 Mar 1943 Nefatia 8 Mar 1943 Medenine Main 20 Mar 1943 El Hamma 4 Apr 1943 El Djern 13 Apr 1943 Kairouan 18 Apr 1943 Zuara 19 May 1943
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Of course to the lay person, everything with a roundal is a Spitfire! 20 years ago, if the photos had said 1982 or 92 I would believe it more. If one and the same and 20 years ago I would gues now long gone :( Mark
Ok can anyone tell if those photos were taken using film or digital ??

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No, sorry, that is TOTALLY DIFFERENT! The advanced materials used in the construction of Thunderbird 1 would withstand the impact with the desert much better than a P-40, particularly around the engine cowlings! :diablo:
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