Back to Squawk list
  • 97

Super-Rare XP-82 Twin Mustang Flies Again After Decade-Long Restoration

Of the five Twin Mustangs left in the world, two are on display in the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. Another is a gate guard at Lackland AFB in Texas. One is currently undergoing restoration. And one—just one—is, at long last, ready to fly. ( More...

Sort type: [Top] [Newest]

James Driskell 10
I remember seeing the Twin Mustangs all the time, either outbound or inbound to McChord AFB in the late '40s or early '50. We lived directly under the flight pattern to the north of the base. Seeing one was always a treat. I'm looking forward to seeing this one in flight.
James Simms 2
Was stationed @ Ft.Lewis 85-86 living in Steliacoom. Know what you mean, used to see C-141’s coming in over the base for runway 34. Seemed like they always did their turn right over the Lewis Ammo Supply Point

Russ Brown 2
I was a deckhand on the ferry.
Russ Brown 2
5106 s. Oakes St in Tacoma was in the pattern.
Frank Harvey 1
A single Merlin sounds really neat. How do two sound ? Did you ever hear any synch mismatch ?
The P-82 was powered by 2 × Allison V-1710-143/145 counter-rotating liquid-cooled V12 engines, 1,600 hp (1,193 kW) each. I don't really remember the engine sound but the snap of a Merlin is distinctive.
Frank Harvey 1
Thanks James. I think the Mustang Merlins were around 1400 HP.
lchamp 1
This is the XP-82 with twin contra-rotating Merlins. They were later converted to Allisons.
sparkie624 1
Back then the Prop Sync was not as good as it is today... You will here some to be sure.
Frank Harvey 1
I can't imagine what it was like for mx to adjust the cabling for the throttles, and control surfaces on the dual control from either cockpit versions.
sparkie624 4
Probably not as bad as you think... You get them close and then they had a mechanical computer that would keep them in sync, so once you got to altitude, you were pretty good.... Keep in mind that you have to be within 50 RPM's to engage it and you cannot use it for takeoff's and landings.... Would be bad to lose your master motor and have the good engine to follow it. :)
Frank Harvey 2
Thanks Sparky. I tend to forget we had ingenious mechanical devices to handle what is now done by electronics.
sparkie624 6
WOW.. Nice... I love to see these Rare birds come to life...
James Dubick 3
I was a flight instructor at the Cessna dealer Skyway Aviation in Orlando FL and signed Tom off for his private ticket in Sept. of 1967. I just checked my old log book. A lot of water under the bridge for both of us.
lchamp 2
I'm a volunteer at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum where Tom keeps his B-25. He has lots of projects working right now. XP-82 is top priority, of course.
Frank Harvey 3
Must have been fun to lose an engine on takeoff especially if you were the non-pic on the dual control version.
James Simms 3
Chris Mock 3
Missed the opportunity to call it the P-102
TWA55 1
That is one way to stay buddies, I have the controls NO I DO, lol It was a strange looking acrft
Rob Palmer 1
Would love to see performance specs on this. E.G., top speed at altitude. Wonder how it handled with one engine landing.
Jim Capone -4
Guess military spending was out of control then as now!
James Simms 2
The -82 was conceived during WW2 when bases weren’t close enough to Japan for the current fighters of the day. Once Iwo Jima was taken & secured, P-51’s were able to make the trip but the -82 continued development.

From wiki: “This aircraft was accepted by the Army Air Forces on 30 August 1945, whose officials were so impressed by the aircraft, while still in development, that they ordered the first production P-82Bs in March 1945, fully three months before its first flight. The XP-82 prototypes, and production P-82Bs and P-82Es, retained both fully equipped cockpits so that pilots could fly the aircraft from either position, alternating control on long flights, while later night fighter versions kept the cockpit on the left side only, placing the radar operator in the right position.”

Have to remember that jets were still in their infancy, several P-80’s crashed including one that took the life of Richard Bong (the leading fighter ace in the Pacific), on August 6, 1945; the day of the dropping of the first nuke on Hiroshima.

Even w/the advent of the Korean War same five years later, jets were small in #’s w/limited range, so props were the plane of choice @ the start (large #’s of prop fighters w/an available pool (Active Duty & Reserve/National Guard) of pilots already trained. Jet training took a little longer as it was a tatoally new beast.


Don't have an account? Register now (free) for customized features, flight alerts, and more!
Did you know that FlightAware flight tracking is supported by advertising?
You can help us keep FlightAware free by allowing ads from We work hard to keep our advertising relevant and unobtrusive to create a great experience. It's quick and easy to whitelist ads on FlightAware or please consider our premium accounts.