|Roaring Glory Warbirds Vol. 5
Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
This DVD brings the viewer up close and in flight
with the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt. Often
overshadowed by other classic warbirds, the P-47 was no glamor girl.
Regardless, Republic aviation's Thunderbolt or "jug" earn
a reputation with pilots and aircrews for its rugged construction
and its ability to sustain battle damage. During the war, P-47's accounted
for 3,916 enemy aircraft destroyed, plus thousands of ground targets
confirmed destroyed. Today, less than a half dozen are still flying
today. This DVD includes footage of the P-47 "Tar Heel Hal"
in flight over Kentucky and Indiana scenery.
The Thunderbolt is a massive fighter. Fully loaded,
the plane weighed 7-9 tons, far greater than any other WWII fighter.
Host Steve Hinton tours the viewer around the features and details
of the aircraft. Of particular interest is the massive powerplant
with its 13 foot diameter propeller, and 2,800 cubic inch engine.
To accommodate this, other unique features like the telescoping feature
in the landing gear struts, for additional ground clearance. The fighter's
exhaust could be routed into a turbo-superchager for additional altitude
performance. Other interesting details, like how the plane's fabric
control surfaces were replaced with all metal control surfaces, because
of the tendency for fabric to rip during high speed dives.
The fighter was heavily armed: with eight .50 caliber
machine guns, making it a deadly and very stable gun platform. External
racks allowed the "jug" to carry thousands of pounds of
bombs, eight rack mounted rockets or long range centerline and drop
P-47 In Flight
Next, the viewer observes the complete pre-take
off cockpit check. One gets an appreciate for the spacious cockpit,
and views of the instrument panel from the pilot's point of view.
For taxing, s-turns are required to see forward. It was an easy plane
to fly, with only a minimum of training required. Once airborne, this
fighter is very light on the controls, despite all its weight. In
the air, the viewer watches excellent chase plane photography of the
Thunderbolt in flight. Also, air to air flight with a P-51 Mustang.
What is interesting is the size comparison between these two aircraft.
The disc contains aerobatics including rolls, loops, stalls and rapid
Like other Roaring Glory title, this DVD has an excellent multiangle
section, allowing the user to select between cockpit , pilot, and
chase plane camera angles. There are three segments represented -
take off, flight and landing. Together, these allow us to see the
P-47 in detailed operation. For anyone interested in aviation, flight
or WWII history this section really makes the disc unique.
The Young Pilots
Two segments highlight the P-47's role in two theaters of WWII. This
history is recreated with WWII footage, and modern reinactors The
first highlights the story of Gill Burns February 23, 1945 mission
from Toul France, with his Thunderbolt nicknamed "Tar Heel Hal"
out on mission. Hit by AA fire over the target, and sustaining massive
damage, his plane brings its pilot home. The next segment is the story
of Wally Montique in the Pacific His mission begins with take off
from Leyte in the Philippines for a 200 mile round trip flight. To
intercept enemy fighters over a Navy convoy. In the dogfight, P-47's
surprised the Japanese fighters Wally Montique's plane was hit, forcing
him to bail out. His story is one of luck, and the durability of the
P-47 that helped save his life.
Training Film "How to Fly the P-47"
This 1943 newsreel made for the USAAF by Republic
covers high altitude flight and aerobatics, including ground handling
takeoffs, flight and landing. It is an interesting piece of training
footage for young pilots, and today is an interesting study of wartime
propaganda, and for P-47 aficionados, a chance to see additional footage
of this warbird in flight and cockpit operations.
Several photo sections allows the viewer to preview
still images in a "Family Album" section and "Pilot's
Handbook " that contain dozens of images and diagrams.
The disc also includes previews of other Roaring Glory warlord DVDs.
Included are trailers for their F4U, A6M, P-38, P-47, F6F each is about
two minutes long and introduces other warbirds in the "Roaring
Review by Justin Taylan
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October 23, 2019