Soaring high above Darwin in an Airplane .....
The Military Air Museum found on the grounds of the current airport in Darwin, is a large purpose built shed that houses some extraordinary aeroplanes. The first thing you will notice as you enter the shed is a massive B52 bomber which takes up the main part of the shed. It is nearly the length of the shed and just about the same in width.
The B52 was a donation from the American Air Force and when they tried to move it into the shed (thinking that the shed they built was big enough) it was too big. The wings and tail wing were too wide and high to fit through the doors. Find out what they did to fit the Bomber inside to keep it safe from the weather. You are able to climb stairs near the cockpit to see inside the plane, and view the instruments inside. Underneath you can see where the bombs where held, another massive area. It is very big and heavy in size and would make you wonder how it ever lifted off the ground. It is pretty awesome to see up close.
On the left side of the entry doors are some glass cabinets which hold some amazing items from the war times, This includes instruments that assisted pilots with navigating, book keeping among other instruments. There are some memorabilia from the old days of Ansett Air Lines and TAA. Items such as carry bags, photos and uniforms, propellers, tail wings, other early equipment that was used before more sophisticated and computerized instruments were invented. It sure makes you appreciate what we have today.
On display is an F111 along with a photo of all the armory that it can carry. Who would think that one plane can carry so much ammunition in one go. There are plenty of propellers, engines and other parts of aeroplanes that have been found around the Darwin area. A gun Turret which once lived on the top of a plane. One green frog, tried to get into the turret but could not. The soldier who climbed into the turret would have to do it backwards and be flexible and thin. No padding on this seat either. Imagine sitting on this metal seat for hours during a mission, hmm could be hard on the backside.
Near the entry to the back area is a small theatre set up so that you can watch a film about the bombing of Darwin. Which was bombed more times that Pearl Harbour, sadly. On the floor is a B-25D Mitchell #41-30222 Hawg mouth. There are mission symbols on this plane.
Bombs crowned by a star - indicating successful missions.
Two Japanese flags were added following a mission over Wewak on 16th October, with a soldier claiming a fighter with the nose guns while the turret gunner claimed another.