______New Display of North American B-25 Bomber
Wings of History member, Ken McBride has generously loaned his B-25 (TB-25N) to the Museum for the next six months and possibly longer. The B-25 is now on display at the museum during regular open hours. We would like to thank all the volunteers that moved the aircraft from San Martin airport to the Wings of History museum.
A partial history of this aircraft is as follows:
This aircraft was built in a North American Aviation facility in Kansas City, Kansas. It was manufactured between December, 1944 and January, 1945 as a B-25J-25-NC and assigned USAAF S/N 44-30324. This B-25 variant has the glass bombardier’s nose and originally was armed with 12-0.05 caliber machine guns. It was capable of carrying 4000 pounds of bombs internally and had wing racks for additional ordinance. It was sent to the 12th Airforce in Italy in January of 1945, but no record of combat missions exists. It was returned to the US in July 1945 and assigned to the 610th Army Air Force base Unit at Eglin, Florida. Here it was converted to a TB-25J trainer aircraft. After that it was moved around to different training units until September of 1954. It was then shipped to Hayes Aircraft Company in Birmingham, Alabama for conversion to a TB-25N making it a navigator training aircraft. Also, the engines were upgraded to Wright R-2600-29A Cyclones. In September of 1957 it was sent to Davis-Monathan Air Force Base for storage and was classified as surplus.
In October 1958 it was purchased by Aviation Rental Service of St. Paul, Minnasota and registered as N3161G. In June 1965 it was
issued a certificate of Airworthiness- Limited Category by the FAA and passed through a series of owners until Ken McBride purchased it in 2007. Ken’s plans are to bring it up to flying status. We are fortunate to have this aircraft on display.
If you wish to be trained as a docent or would like to help prepare the tour syllabus for this display, contact Gianni Leonarduzzi by calling the Museum at (408) 683-2290 Tuesdays or Thursdays between 10am and 4pm.