Late war P-51D with 2nd seat for radar officer

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7 years 10 months

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While going through the Freeman collection I came across this rather bizzare P-51.
Has anyone any idea as to its role/mission & what radar is it carrying, looks similar to what Mossie nightfighters carried??
http://i262.photobucket.com/albums/ii120/Duggy009/Duggy009-2/P51DMustangcodedVF-Sright-sidedviewwithcockpitdouble-splitopensecondseatforaradaroperatorwithantennafittedonthewingandwasthepersonalmach.jpg
"A two seat P-51 Mustang , serial number 44-72210 of the 336th Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Group,coded VF-S, right-sided view, with cockpit double-split open. This was because the aircraft was modified to take a second seat for a radar operator, with antenna fitted on the wing and was the personal machine for Colonel Stewart, dated June 1945." Information provided by Debden historian Keith Braybrooke."
Thanks in advance.
Duggy the intrigqued.

Original post

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11 years 4 months

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So frustrating not being able to see that pic.........

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...." Information provided by Debden historian Keith Braybrooke."

I believe sadly Keith Braybrooke passed away recently,if it was the same Kieth .

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20 years

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It would certainly make an excellent intruder mount.

Moggy

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:) I did include the photo in my quote above hoping that Mustang51 would see it that was as well but been edited :)

That was me. We don't repost images, even for the best of reasons :) The later link was the right answer - Moggy

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With regards to the two-seat/split canopy modification, a few other D-models had the same conversion done in the field. According to Martin Kyburz (Swiss Mustangs), there were four of the two-seat converted D-models used by the Swiss AF. Potentially, all of these had already been modified while in USAAF service in England (late in the war/post-war) prior to going to the Swiss AF in 1948.

One of these is pictured here, P-51D-5-NA 44-13316. Photo from Martin Kyburz/Swiss Mustangs.

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y282/Bomber_12th/Bomber_12th001/mustangsplitcanopy_zpswio3dwap.jpg

And here are a few more photos/description of the same aircraft: http://www.cebudanderson.com/swissmustangs.htm

Here is the war-weary marked P-51D-5-NA 44-13885, also modified into a two-seater (hack), photographed at Mount Farm (base of operations for the 7th Photographic Reconnaissance Group). Photos from the Roger Freeman collection.

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y282/Bomber_12th/Bomber_12th001/P-51Mustangserialnumber44-13885parkedatMountFarmUsedasahackplane-2_zpsdgcw2t9e.jpg

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y282/Bomber_12th/Bomber_12th001/P-51Mustangserialnumber44-13885parkedatMountFarmUsedasahackplane_zpsmdfuozdk.jpg

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I had no idea such a thing existed.

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Martin (wieesso), a few posts back, mentioned a Warbirds International magazine article about Col. Everett Stewart's 44-72210 with the radar and dual-seat modification. I have that magazine, and unfortunately the article doesn't provide any specific details at all (nothing about what radar type/why it was used/how well it did) - instead, it more/less asks for any readers to chime-in if they know more about it. In a clearer version of the photo, it appears the antenna array sticking out of the leading edge of the wing is mounted through one of the gun ports, and the right-side gun bay may have been where the radar equipment was installed.

On any of these two-seat conversions, more than just the canopy modifications, in order to fit a seat in the back, the fuselage fuel tank, liners, and radio rack had to be removed and the SCR-522 radio box and battery had to be repositioned.

(By the way, if the name Col. Everett Stewart doesn't immediately pop-out at you, aircraft like his "Sunny VIII" probably do.)

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Thanks John for the info.
Still would be nice to find out its role, I guess night fighter, can be ruled out, as why go to all that trouble of installing specialized equipment & not slapping on some black paint.
Regards Duggy.

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The aerial array look as if it was the old AI Mk4, so seems an oddity. There is an RAF Proctor in the background so pic must be in UK