P51-B Mustang Fighter,
similar to the one flown by Charles F. Gumm.



Above: Photograph from Stars and Stripes Vol. 4, No. 62 January 1944.

Above: Original photograph used in Stars and Stripes article, left - modifications were  made, presumably,  for security reasons (number on tail and second aircraft erased).  


  empty weight
  max loaded weight

  maximum speed
  service ceiling 
  range with drop tanks



  11.28 meters
  9.83 meters 
  4.16 meters

  3,380 kilograms
  5,080 kilograms

  708 KPH
  12,770 meters 
  2,575 KM

  37 feet
  32 feet 3 inches
  13 feet 8 inches

  7,450 pounds
  11,200 pounds

  440 MPH / 380 KT
  41,900 feet
  1,600 MI / 1,390 NMI

  six 0.5 in. cal. machine guns
  and ten 5 in. rockets or
  2,000 lbs. of bombs.

The Mustang P-51B In New Condition
(Artist's Impression)


The P-51A Mustang was designed by Raymond Rice and Edgar Schmued for the North American Aviation Company in 1940. Its design specifications were based upon the British requirements for a new fighter and its first flight took place on 26th October, 1940. The first P-51A Mustang arrived on 24th October 1941 at Liverpool docks, England for test flights. The maiden flight of its successor, the XP-51B, took place on 30th November, 1942 piloted by Bob Chilton. The first production P-51B flew on 5th May, 1943 and delivery to England started later that year. Assembly, modification for operational use and flight testing were carried out at the US 8th Airforce  Base Area Depot (BAD) No. 2 at Warton (recorded as 'Wartun' in the Domesday Book) in Lancashire. During the Second World War Warton's principal function was to receive a full range of new aircraft, including the P-51B,  from the USA and modify them for operational use. Between 2,000 and 3,000 aircraft would be continuously on site. Following assembly, the P-51Bs were assigned to the 354th Fighter Squadron. Then, following a short period of  intensive training, enemy combat missions started in December, 1943. Warton was closed as an American base at the end of the war.