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Josten wings question


B-17Guy
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5thwingmarty

Does anyone have an example of a Josten hallmarked clutch back observer wing? It seems odd to me that Josten had all of the varieties of balloon wings in clutch back, all of the varieties of pilot wings in both clutch and pin back, but I have never seen an example of a hallmarked Josten clutch back observer.

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  • 1 year later...

I was doing some Josten wing research and turned up this old thread.  In reviewing the wings shown I noticed something a bit odd about Andrew's Balloon Observer wing.  Although it has the Josten Sterling mark in the center of the back as is typical of Josten pinback wings, the style of these appears to be that typically found on Josten clutchback wings.  On all of the other pinback wings I have seen the Josten and Sterling are lined up, with the J and N being directly over the S and G.  On all the clutchback wings the J is centered over the ST and the N is centered over the NG.  

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I don't recall if we discussed this on the thread.  WWII and pre-WWII Josten pilot, balloon, and observer wings all seem to have been pin back (or at least the vast majority of these wings).  The exception is that WASP wings were all clutch back.  The WWII pin back versions of the pilot, senior pilot and command pilot wing are relatively rare. 

However (and this is just my general opinion), the clutch back versions of the Josten-marked senior and command pilot wings are VERY common.  I suspect that the clutch back versions of these wings are all post KW period.  I know for many years, someone on eBay was selling NOS senior pilot clutch back wings for $125 each.  Finding a pin back pilot wing from Josten was a nightmare for me (in fact I found a WASP wing before I found a Josten pilot wing that I was willing to spend money on!).

 

But I don't think that many people outside of some of the collecting mavens really make that distinction between clutchback and pin back Josten wings.

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