|Later in WWII the Allied bombers were flying deep into Germany but suffered tremendous losses
because of the lack of range the fighter escorts had. German fighters would wait beyond the
range of the Allied fighters and then attack the vulnerable bombers. Once the P-51, called
Mustang by the British, had the Allison engine replaced with a British Merlin it possessed the
high performance that had been lacking. With drop tanks the P-51 had the range to escort
bombers all the way to Berlin and back.
In the summer of 1945 P-51D Mustang 44-72587 number 619 was assigned to the 462nd FS/
506th FG stationed at Airfield 3 on Iwo Jima. The aircraft was shared by 1st Lt. William G.
Ebersole and 2nd Lt. James R. Bercaw. Ebersole was the youngest member of the 462nd FS
and flew twelve missions with ten of them being VLR missions. Lt. Ebersole was awarded the
Distinguished Flying Cross. Rumor has it P-51 “Hon Mistake” received the name after shooting
up an outhouse while a Japanese soldier was using the facility.
Specifications for the North American Aviation P-51D Mustang
The main difference between the D variant and the K variant was the use of the Aeroproducts
propeller on the K instead of the Hamilton Standard propeller that was unavailable around the
time of these P-51s being produced. However some K’s will be seen with Hamilton Standard
because of field changes.
Hamilton Standard Prop – 11 ft 2 ins, 4 blades, some were cuffed and some weren’t and had
square tipped blades (paddle blade)
Aeroproducts propeller – 11 ft , 4 blades
Total K built – 1,500
Wing Span – 37 ft (11.27 m)
Length – 32 ft 3 in (9.82 m)
Height – 13 ft 8 in (4.16 m)
Empty – 7,125 lb (3,232 kg)
Gross – 10,100 lb (4,581 kg)
Maximum Take-off – 11,600 lb (5,262 kg)
Engine – Packard Merlin two-staged supercharged V-1650-7, 12 cylinder V engine 1,695 hp.
Maximum Speed – 437 mph (703 km/h)
Ceiling – 41,900 ft (12,771 m)
Range – 950 miles (1,529 km)
Maximum Range – 2,300 miles (3,701 km)
(6) .50 caliber MG
Maximum External Bomb Load – 2,000 lb (907 kg)
Or (4) .5 inch rockets.
|Hobby Master 1/48 Air Power Series
P-51D Mustang "Hon Mistake"
1st Lt. William G. Ebersole
462th FS, 506th FG, 7th AF, Iwo Jima, 1945
without pilot signature plate
|HOBBY MASTER COLLECTOR