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zetareticulan
07-27-2005, 08:01 PM
Found this and it's nice to see our Forgotten Battle getting some coverage in the U.K. Press.

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/science_technology/article301684.ece

Waldo.Pepper
07-27-2005, 08:12 PM
If someone starts a credible fund I would donate some bucks to help return the plane to Finnish hand.

Good read thanks.

Enforcer572005
07-27-2005, 10:16 PM
if not for the former marine who located and recovered it, the plane would still be on the bottom of that lake. i think its in a good place, but i was hoping they would restore it more. im glad they are leaving it in finish markings, but the average joe citizen will think its a "nazi" plane.....sort of like the PC morons that cause us to be saddled with modern insignia for fin planes in WW2 sims.

they have a good point, but many more people (including me) will be able to see it at one of the most visited and best aviation museums in the world. THose guys even found a Vindicator and restored it, and they restored a P40B they found in Russia....in AVG markings, sicne so many were navy pilots. they have a pretty good web site wiht pics of evrything. put national museum of naval aviation in a search engine and youll find it.

Besides, the only buffalo that was built by the fins themselves is in a museum there, so they do have one.

PBNA-Boosher
07-28-2005, 12:15 AM
Well, I just wrote to my Senator to try to help the plane be put back in Finland. But I don't trust Corzine so much, I'm not old enough to vote anyway, so what does he care? I'll try writing post to the White House, but I bet they won't care either. Still, it never hurts to put the voice out. Let people know.

__________________________________________________
To Sen. Corzine,

I figure it appropriate that I put the message topic under the "Veterans" category. I have been watching a specific international dilemma for some time now. In 1998, a type B-239 Brewster Buffalo was found in Lake Karelia in Russia by an expedition, led by Gary Villard, (Former USMC flight engineer)looking for a surviving example of the plane type. The plane now sits in Pensacola, Florida's US Naval Air Museum waiting to be restored. But the fact that this plane is even in the United States is a serious breach of the law. In 1939, Finland bought this Brewster Buffalo along with 43 other examples of it to defend its skies against Russia. Not only is this plane an example of combat, Senator Corzine, but it also is a national symbol in Finland. BW-372 belongs in the Helsinki Air Museum in Finland. It is a Finnish fighter aircraft, flown by Finnish pilots in Russo-Finnish air battles. This plane is a war-veteran. The excuses that the Americans have come up with (and please excuse my obscenities) are pure bull****. The article here: http://news.independent.co.uk/world/science_technology/article301684.ece states "While it was not very successful with us, it was an aircraft that was 'sort of' a milestone in fighter aviation, because it was the first monoplane the Navy ever bought and it led directly to the development of the Grumman Wildcat." The end statement is absolutely 100% false. The Grumman Corporation already had the "F4F" in development when the Brewster was being designed. They were part of the same contract-race to build a new fighter for the US Navy. The original Grumman plans for the F4F called for a biplane design, but the Grumman design had serious flaws, and the Brewster model 239 performed quite well. Only after the Navy had accepted the Brewster model over the XF4F-1 model did Grumman change its layout to a monoplane design, having been told to do so by the US Navy.
The fact still remains that in 1939, the United States Government sold 44 of these Brewster model B-239 fighters to Finland. BW-372 was indeed one of these planes. I'm very sure that Finland AND the US could produce the original paperwork for it. I ask that the issue be dealt with and the plane returned to its rightful owner: Finland. As much as the plane embarrassed us in the Pacific theater of the second World War, this very plane was the shining light in Finland's darkest hour. We have many planes and ships in museums nationwide. Helsinki has none. If America claims to be looking after the safety of the globe's freedoms, then let it reflect that very statement. Give Finland back it's symbol of Freedom. The nation of Finland deserves this plane more than we.

Taylortony
07-28-2005, 01:31 AM
The US are more than ready to have a go if someone recovers one of their warplanes and I believe they still by law belong to the US, this should still be the case here and it should be returned to the country it has been stolen from, ie Finland, it is their National Heritage not the Americans, regardless of if they paid for it's transportation or not.

If someone steals you car and are caught, they do not then sue you for the cost of the petrol they used in driving it away...

KrasniyYastreb
07-28-2005, 01:37 AM
"The real owner is the Finnish state," Sten Olof Niemenen, curator of Helsinki's Aviation Museum, told The Independent. "Finland bought the planes from the US in 1939 and the plane should be returned to its correct owner."

Actually the real owner was the Russian government http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif since the plane crash-landed on Soviet territory. And if it was then sold to the Americans, well they own it now. And while I agree its "sentimental" home is in Finland, I don't believe the Finns have much of a case... Only hope that an arrangement can be worked out where it can be displayed in Helsinki.

HotelBushranger
07-28-2005, 01:58 AM
Seeing my dad is Finnish, I feel very strongly about this. Although my many brothers don't give a darn about the Finns, I am much closer with my Finnish background, after all it's where I get my passion for aircraft from http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
This is yet another example of American corporation/groups (in this case a treasure hunter) using sleasly tricks and money to get what they what. I imagine if that person had thought about the situation if it was reversed. It would be like Russia trying to get the last Mustang or Thunderbolt left, or Italy trying to get Britians last Spitfire. Such planes, respective of their countries origin, are national symbols, and should be treated with such respect by such people as this 'aviation treasure hunter'. He should stop thinking of money, and, although yes it was important for America too, they already have several.

Badsight.
07-28-2005, 02:08 AM
Originally posted by Enforcer572005:
if not for the former marine who located and recovered it, the plane would still be on the bottom of that lake. he ripped off his bankrollers & sold it behind their backs to the russians , who sold it to the americans

if it wasnt for that guy , it would have been handed over to the Finns

Gary Villiard used the money he was given to find that plane , then double-crossed his backers & got away with on-selling it


those people who put up the money for the team to explore were lucky to get out of moscow , they went to Moscow looking for answers , the authorities there that were in on the deal did a stand-over on them to make them leave the city without a fuss & forget about the Brewster

at every stage of the planes removal & transportation the locals were bribed & kept the relative of Lauri Pekuri at bay

how about that for a story

RNZAFJay
07-28-2005, 03:17 AM
Originally posted by HotelBushranger:
Seeing my dad is Finnish, I feel very strongly about this. Although my many brothers don't give a darn about the Finns, I am much closer with my Finnish background, after all it's where I get my passion for aircraft from http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
This is yet another example of American corporation/groups (in this case a treasure hunter) using sleasly tricks and money to get what they what. I imagine if that person had thought about the situation if it was reversed. It would be like Russia trying to get the last Mustang or Thunderbolt left, or Italy trying to get Britians last Spitfire. Such planes, respective of their countries origin, are national symbols, and should be treated with such respect by such people as this 'aviation treasure hunter'. He should stop thinking of money, and, although yes it was important for America too, they already have several.

I hear you, I'm part Finnish too. The Finns are very proud of their country, as they have been invaded from both sides (Sweeden and Russia) throughout there history (very simular to Korea).

I can understand that this is a big deal for them while for the US, its just another old warbird (and one they deemed useless at that.) If the plane is sent back to Helsinki, it would be a small moment of justice.

Reading about the Continuation War, and how they stood up to a superpower (USSR) that unjustily breached their nations soverinty, makes me proud of my Finnish heritage. It should be noted Finland joined the Axis powers VERY relucantly, hense being orginally equipt with US and UK aircraft.

Heliopause
07-28-2005, 04:52 AM
The Finnisch kicked *ss, without a doubt!!!

Check this Brewster out
http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a138/heliopause/brewsterski.jpg

HoldSteady641
07-28-2005, 07:11 AM
PBNA-Boosher, fine piece of argument you presented there to your senator!

DxyFlyr
07-28-2005, 09:12 AM
You can get a peek at this plane though it is still in the Restoration Hangar. Just be sure you are at the museum at 11:00 when the guided tour of that hangar starts.

Irreguardless of how it got there, the Buffalo is in very good hands. This museum is excellent. The only threat to this plane now is the occaisional hurricane. (Isn't that a bit of irony). What's more... the big hurricane that threatened it last year was named "Ivan". http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

At any rate, I would imagine that this plane will visit Finland at some point in the near future. Everyone remotely involved with it recogonizes it's significance to the Finns. Afterall, the museum director has expressed the intention of entertaining requests from Finnish authorities to display it there.

Here is the info on the plane from the museum...

Pensacola Naval Air Museum Featured Aircraft (http://broadcast.illuminatedtech.com/display/index.cfm?bp=131)

Read the Director's message about the Buffalo.

My hope is that it is here long enough for me to get a good look at it in an airconditioned display. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

HarryVoyager
07-28-2005, 11:28 AM
Actually, the Buffalo is responsible for the Wildcat's existance.

The original F4F was a biplane fighter, similare to Gruman's earlier offerings, but when the company discovered that Brewster was preparing a monoplane fighter, they felt they had to convert their aircraft into one as well.

Additionally, the Brewster won the competition because it truely was a better fighter than the F4F-2, an underpowered aircraft plagued with engine cooling issues. The performance of the Buffalo is precisely what drove Gruman to improve its plane to the extent that the F4F-3 was.

Had the Buffalo not been developed, our front line carrier fighter would have been an underpowered biplane, even less capable than the much maligned F2A.

Harry Voyager

GerritJ9
07-28-2005, 04:19 PM
Actually the Buffalo in F2A-2 (note: NOT in F2A-3) form was a better aeroplane than the F4F-3. It had a higher top speed, could outturn the F4F, had better rearward view and with its wider-track undercarriage was better suited for carrier landings.
Political reasons were in part responsible for the F2A being discarded- it was a convenient scapegoat for the loss of the Far East (always easy to blame the equipment to cover up for blunders of political and military leaders, and totally inadequate training of the pilots compared to the IJAAF and especially IJN pilots). But another reason was that Brewster could simply not produce the F2A in anything like the numbers required by the USN and USMC.
Not everybody regarded the Buffalo as hopeless- several experienced USMC pilots would have preferred the F2A-2 to the F4F-3 over Guadalcanal (again, NOT the F2A-3). And once they had figured out the correct tactics, the KNIL pilots regarded the B-339D (KNIL version of the F2A-2) as superior overall to the Ki.43 and equal to the A6M2. Unfortunately, by that time most of the KNIL Brewsters had been destroyed, many on the ground.

HarryVoyager
07-28-2005, 05:15 PM
The F2A also had some serious landing gear issues that the F4F-3 didn't have, and the wing structure prevented it from being developed into a folding wing aircraft.

There's more to being a carrier fighter than simply being a good fighter; you have to survive being a carrier plane first.

Harry Voyager

GerritJ9
07-29-2005, 02:32 AM
The Brewster did have some problems with gear failure, but Brewster modified the design of the parts and this reduced the failure rate; a further reduction was achieved by increasing the tyre pressure. The problem re-appeared with the overloaded F2A-3 though.
While the Brewster's wings would have needed a redesign to make them folding, it should be remembered that the F4F-3's wings were non-folding as well- it was not until the F4F-4 that the Wildcat's wings were folding. So the F4F's wings needed a redesign as well.
The main failure was Brewster's totally inadequate production line which simply was not capable of producing the amounts required, aggravated by inefficient (dare one say incompetent, even) management. Even when Brewster moved to a new factory in Pennsylvania and licence-built the F4U, the factory could not produce fighters efficiently.
As a FIGHTER, however, the Buff in F2A-2 version was undoubtedly better that the F4F-3.

HotelBushranger
07-29-2005, 02:40 AM
A couple of nights ago, I brought up this topic with my father. I asked him if he knew what the B-239 was, which he did. I then went on to say that an American company had taken the last Finnish Buffalo, and taken it back to the US. Instantly, I could feel his raw anger, so much of an affect did this have. I was blown away, I didn't think he new that much about planes, but obviously back in Finland it was much more important. He left Finland when he was about 15.

GerritJ9
07-29-2005, 04:55 AM
I, too, would like to see BW-372 return to Finland- on a permanent basis- if only because Finland is MUCH closer than Florida. But apart from distance, the B-239 was extremely important to Finnish history. And with its success record, rightly so.
And count me in for a donation if money has to be raised to get BW-372 back to where she belongs!

tplynn
07-29-2005, 07:47 AM
Possession is 9/10ths of the law. If it was so important to Finland why didn't they recover it and restore it? Just a question, don't get upset. You're welcome to Fla. to visit it! I'm sure that liberal Corzine could careless about an implement of war, sorry! You link America's interest in world freedom with a plane? Semper Fi

Heliopause
07-29-2005, 08:30 AM
Does the Central Finland Aviation Museum have a Brewster? Saw this pic on the net....

http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a138/heliopause/109andbrewster.jpg

JuHa-
07-29-2005, 09:18 AM
Heliopause: Sure, they do.

PBNA-Boosher
07-29-2005, 09:19 AM
That doesn't exactly mean that Helsinki has it. Not to mention, it's not about "just a Brewster." This specific Buffalo, BW-372, was the aircraft of a great Finnish ace and had a great many kills. The specific aircraft is what Helsinki feels, rightly so, was stolen from them.

gorillasika
07-29-2005, 10:04 AM
Originally posted by Heliopause:
Does the Central Finland Aviation Museum have a Brewster? Saw this pic on the net....


That's not a Brewster, but a Finnish design based on Brewster, built by Finns and with a Russian motor:

http://hkkk.fi/~yrjola/war/faf/humu.html

Personally I'm quite happy of where the BW-372 is right now, it's the second best option after Finlad. And if the Americans have the money to restore it, all the better.
Altough I have read some alarming stories of the search of the plane and how it ended in the USA.

DxyFlyr
07-29-2005, 11:11 AM
Boosher makes a good point in that this particular Buffalo's most logical home is in Finland. I do think it goes a bit too far to say it was stolen from them, however.

In a perfect world, the "treasure hunters," before setting out, would have...

1. Determined who had proper ownership,
2. Asked permission to extract her.
3. Researched proper permitting and fees required by Russian authorities to go poking around their lake.
4. Proposed a reasonable price to the proper owner for the extraction of their future museum piece.

Of course, this isn't a perfect world. My guess is the first step alone would involve international court and a bevy of attorneys. All the sudden it doesn't look like a feasible endeavor. Not to mention, while your going through the proper channels, some schmoe is out there digging up your find. I imagine this is why these birds are so rare.

I know zero about international law. Someone smarter than me would have to decide who had proper ownership. But, common sense tells me that the guys that brought her out should get paid for their effort. My capitalist nature says their plunder should go to the highest bidder. A sense of fair play says the Finns should, forever more, have the "option to buy" at a reasonable selling price.

At any rate, I'm glad it's in Pensacola. I think how they are preparing her for display is right on the money. I do agree that she belongs in Finland, eventually. What I would really like to see is this plane (and the expense of reconstruction) be given as a gift to the people of Finland from the people of the USA. I wouldn't mind my tax dollars being spent in that way.

If for some reason this is not possible, it should be offered for sale at some point to the Museum at Helsinki or some similar museum over there.

At the very least, it could go as part of a traveling exhibit. Hey, how about trading exhibits for a period of time? I'd love to have a look at some 109's in Finnish markings!

Badsight.
07-29-2005, 02:55 PM
it totally was stolen

the guy who found it is a backstabbing double crosser

his backers were working with the Helsinki's muesuem director as well as the living relative of Lauri Pekuri

the plane is supposed to be in Finland right now

DxyFlyr
07-29-2005, 04:22 PM
From what I understand, Kottman, the money man, and the original team (which included the Finnish curator) always intended to have it restored in Pensacola.

What I'm not clear on is how Villiard (the guy that found it) eventually got it out of Russian hands.

It sounds like the dirtiest parts of the story involve the Russian authorities.

JadehawkII
07-30-2005, 08:51 AM
Excuse me people, correct me if I'm wrong here, but did they not find that aircraft in a RUSSIAN lake? So that would mean this was in Russian territory and belongs to Russia unless some official agreement were made. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/10.gif
That does not mean I dont want it in Finland, I just believe if he spent so much time, money into finding this aircraft, he deserves what he got. I also believe this aircraft should stay in Finnish markings no matter where it's located. Has Finland made any offers for this aircraft? Thanks all! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

PBNA-Boosher
07-30-2005, 11:19 AM
True, Jadehawk, but also remember that when it comes to recovering aircraft, Russia has been quite lenient if a government can make a certain claim that the plane belonged to them during the war. Remember last summer about this time? They found a downed Bf-109 in a large marsh, I forget which region. Russia gave it back to Germany without question. They also took care of the pilot's remains, even helped identify who it was.