Ohio museum volunteers building vintage war plane

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Associated Press

Posted on March 1, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Updated Sunday, Mar 2 at 12:05 PM

URBANA, Ohio (AP) — Inside a small Ohio air museum, dozens of volunteers are building a vintage World War II B-17 bomber one piece at a time.

When they're finished, they'll roll out a better-than-new, airworthy version of the iconic aircraft that was celebrated in Hollywood movies like "Twelve O'Clock High" and "Memphis Belle."

Major chunks came from five different planes, and volunteers have found, bought or bartered for many other parts from around the country. What they can't find, they have to fabricate from 28,000 original blueprints fetched from microfiche at the Smithsonian Institution.

Although completion is still years away, the gleaming shell of the plane stretched out in the hangar these days is unmistakably that of the rugged 74-foot-long, four-engine bomber.

The plane is being built at the Champaign Aviation Museum.

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