Friday Afternoon Puzzle

Profile picture for user FarlamAirframes

Member for

11 years 10 months

Posts: 1,428

Time for a little puzzle. It has taken a few hours but I am pretty sure I have this one nailed on identity. So lets see how long it takes for you chaps to confirm or refute what I think this it is from. Some helpful hints. 1. Russian Star 2. Sold as Il2 3. Black line around the star 4. Unusual reinforcing structure on back. 5. Only two stamps - 35 and 44 Inspector Numbers. 6. All aluminium construction. So clock starts now. Bonne Chance Brian
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Original post
Profile picture for user Ant.H

Member for

19 years 9 months

Posts: 2,939

Thinking slightly out of the box, I'm wondering if this might be early-ish P39? I seem to remember the Russians came up with a structural-strengthening mod package for the earlier models that eventually inspired Bell to introduce similar mods on the production line.
Profile picture for user FarlamAirframes

Member for

11 years 10 months

Posts: 1,428

Ant - I have been up and down most of the lend lease aircraft and it does not fit. I agree that most of the Russian aircraft were either robust construction or wood. It is most likely fuselage - rather than wing or tail. The early Il2 was a metal tail and there is a stripped back one in Beijing that shows it is not one of them. Working through theVVS inventory I found one that matches perfectly on the outside - rivets. strips of aluminum etc. There are few image of its inside but I have found two images that show this construction... An innovative structure with flared holed ribs ... in conclusion I think it is a Tupelov SB.
Profile picture for user Ant.H

Member for

19 years 9 months

Posts: 2,939

Great detective work, have to agree it does look a convincing match for the SB.

Member for

9 years 7 months

Posts: 194

Certainly some very nice riveting, inside & out......