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Class 1 wings


Noelle
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I'm 10,000% sure these are fake.  W1 doesn't look like the ones here: http://www.ww2wings.com/wings/usaaf/wasp/jcw1wasp.shtml in numerous ways, though there isn't a W2 there.  I know several things to look for for the lozenge wings (the dimensions, weight, etc), but not much about the other class wings. Since these two have auctions on eBay right now, I thought I'd take this as an opportunity to try to find out more about what to look for, especially since it sounds like Joe-ldemort has been known to take originals of the base wings to turn into replicas.  I know that the best way to determine authenticity is to get then directly from the family, but there are only so many who can do that for obvious reasons.  So what are some other things the rest of us can watch for for these two since there's likely a higher chance that the only way to come by originals now is secondarily?

 

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Oops, the title was meant too be class 1 and class 2 wings. Hopefully this comment will make this come up later when I search by class 2 or w1 or w2 or w-1 or w-2

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I’m no expert on these wings but I’m encouraged by your passion and desire to be.

 

The day you bought that first wing opened a whole new world and ever since you have been on a quest for knowledge.

 

Wishing you all the best 

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47 minutes ago, manayunkman said:

I’m no expert on these wings but I’m encouraged by your passion and desire to be.

 

The day you bought that first wing opened a whole new world and ever since you have been on a quest for knowledge.

 

Wishing you all the best 

 

I grew up thinking everyone knew about them since I grew up knowing.  Running around Castle AFB in Merced with my WAAC Gma and AF-vet Gpa who trained pilots, I just thought everyone knew, and through being told all my life by everyone but my Gma that the things I wanted to do was "for boys" (anything math and science...for boys...flying...for boys), knowing those women who did it anyway was everything.  It took until April of last year for me to realize how rare that actually was, and how few people ever knew about them, and it hit hard that I took for granted that I'd spent time around some of them as a kid instead of appreciating the privilege I had.  That kicked my butt into starting to fly after ra life of "I wish I could," and it's been a major mission of mine since then to make sure they're remembered and to help encourage girls to have interests in aviation.  (It still frustrates me how I was told to my face by people who should have been in my corner that what I wanted was for boys.)

 

When I get to talk to groups of girls (pictured is 5 girls from a girl Girl Scout troop of 16 last month--we had smaller rotating groups), we talk about the WASPs and some of the ones buried locally (3 of the 38 are buried locally, plus 3 more), and I like to have things they can see and touch that are real, and I like to wear things that are real, like that flight suit and the helmet beside me that you can't see much. Then when they can hold a pair of real wings--you should see how their faces light up, like they're holding the Holy Grail.  Fakes and repros just aren't the same, and I won't try to pass either off as real to them just because "they're just kids."  Respect kids, and they'll respect you.  I had a repro and my real ones with me, and the way they gravitate toward what's real is just magic.  You can see the way they're connecting with the past and picturing themselves as one of these women. They ignore the modern repros that were never touched by a WASP's hands and glom on instead to the ones one that of those women wore.

 

So it's doubly important to learn what I can to make sure I'm not fooled either.  The flood of fakes already doesn't sit well with me, and if I'm fooled, then I'd end up passing off a fake as real to kids, and that doesn't sit well with me either.  And I don't have the budget that a lot of people here do (or else I'd have snapped up the cap that Ron has listed right now), so being fooled once, as I almost was a few times, would be a big financial hit that could have gone to something actually helpful. I'd love to basically be able to be a small traveling museum of sorts when I do this.

 

This pic was also days after I first solo'd, and I had my wings with me.  I also took them with me when I flew in a B-25 to Canada for a couple air shows as part of a WASP outreach program.  This really, really matters to me.  So I really need to learn all I can.  There were just 629 of the lozenge ones made, fewer of the rest.  There are other things I'd love to have more than almost anything, but know that the chances of them ever being within my budget are nil.  So I'm trying to do what I can.  The WASP kept my dream alive when those who should have backed me tried to kill it.  The least I can do is learn what I can about as many of them as I can, and do everything in my power to make sure that what I acquire to share is authentic and true.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
5thwingmarty

Since no one else ever answered I will chime in with a few basic points.

  1. This fake W1 wing is made from a Gemsco base wing, or possibly a cast copy of a Gemsco wing.  A real one would be made using a different base wing, more like the W2 wing they also have listed.
  2. Both of these fake wings have the TH details wrong.
  3. Both of these fake wings have the details of the visible rolled-up edge of the 319TH scroll wrong.
  4. The letters and numbers on both of these fake wings have details that are wrong.
  5. This fake W2 wing looks to have been made from a cast copy of the right type of base wing, but this one looks to have a completely flat reverse side.  A genuine one would not have a completely flat back, and would have a sterling mark.

I am choosing to be less than clear about the flaws as I don't want to give the fakers any better clues how to improve their wares.

 

Marty

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10 hours ago, 5thwingmarty said:

Since no one else ever answered I will chime in with a few basic points.

  1. This fake W1 wing is made from a Gemsco base wing, or possibly a cast copy of a Gemsco wing.  A real one would be made using a different base wing, more like the W2 wing they also have listed.
  2. Both of these fake wings have the TH details wrong.
  3. Both of these fake wings have the details of the visible rolled-up edge of the 319TH scroll wrong.
  4. The letters and numbers on both of these fake wings have details that are wrong.
  5. This fake W2 wing looks to have been made from a cast copy of the right type of base wing, but this one looks to have a completely flat reverse side.  A genuine one would not have a completely flat back, and would have a sterling mark.

I am choosing to be less than clear about the flaws as I don't want to give the fakers any better clues how to improve their wares.

 

Marty

 

I wish we could flog the fakers.

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5thwingmarty

By the way, I believe both of these two fakes were made by "he who shall not be named" and anyone can buy them straight from him for $130.  There was also a fake Class W-4 wing on ebay this week that also appeared to be from this same source.  I can't find the listing for it any more so I presume someone made an offer although I can't find it in the sold items either.

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