Internship at Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum – Week 2 (21 May 2018 Thru 25 May 2018)

Week two of the internship at the Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum started a little different from the first week.  DJ Armstrong and I were tasked with performing some research on the museum’s collection of aircraft in order to ensure the accuracy of some new placards that were being made for the displays.  The first part of the research began with DJ and I physically climbing onto and into all of the aircraft at the museum in search of data plates to confirm a few things about each aircraft.

The data plates would confirm the aircraft type that it was purported to be.  For example, the museum’s F-104A Starfighter was actually a pre-production YF-104A Starfighter.  That may seem like a minor nomenclature distinction, but in reality, a YF-104A is a much rarer aircraft than the first regular production version F-104A.  The aircraft specifications needed to change just slightly to accurately reflect the corrected version of the aircraft at the museum.

Another aspect that the data plates would confirm were the aircraft’s serial number for Air Force aircraft or Bureau Number for Navy Aircraft.  These numbers are used to track the history of the aircraft through its respective service.  This tells us when and where the plane served, and whether or not it served in a war zone during its career.  The units that the aircraft served with help us to determine which paint and markings to restore the aircraft into for presentation in the museum.

DJ and I found that only 20% of the aircraft at the museum still had their factory data plates, so we were forced to refer to the museum’s data files to analyze the rest of the airframes’ history.  This was accomplished over three days, and we reviewed the material for spelling and grammatical errors as well.  Once complete, the Curator ordered the new placards for the aircraft, and once arrived, they will be em-placed on new stands for each aircraft at the museum.

During the research work for the placards, I was also tasked with my regular docent duties and giving tours.  Sometimes manning concerns would relegate me to running the gift shop on occasion, but this normally did not happen for more than a couple of hours or so.  Next week I look forward to doing some restoration work on the F-15 Eagle and/or the F-16 Fighting Falcon in preparation for the open house event that we will be holding on June 2nd.  The Open House will be on Saturday from 0800-1600.

Internship at Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum – Week 1 (14 May 2018 Thru 18 May 2018)

This week I started my Summer internship at the Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum located in Pueblo, Colorado.  The internship is for six credit hours, so I will have a significant investment in work at the museum this Summer.  It will take approximately 8 1/2 weeks to meet the minimum hourly requirements to satisfy the internship for six credit hours if I work Monday thru Friday from 1000-1600 daily.  There will be some additional days that I will work on the week-ends from time to time that will also go towards my hourly total as well.

This week began with a re-hash of most of the duties I performed when I volunteered at the museum as a docent prior to the internship.  I performed the opening and closing sequences of hangars one and two which includes turning on exhibit monitors and videos and unlocking doors before visitors arrive at the museum.  Once the museum opened, I introduced guests to the museum itself and provided an overview of the facility.  I give a brief history lesson about the Pueblo Army Air Base that existed at the location before the museum and the airport, and then I describe what each hangar contains and perform a quick safety briefing before releasing our guests to peruse the museum at their own pace.

I also acted as tour guide to several larger groups that visited the museum during the week.  I was assigned to hangar one which is primarily dedicated to World War II and earlier aircraft and displays.  I walked the groups to individual aircraft and displays, and then I provided a brief synopsis on the history and pertinent facts about the exhibit’s subject or aircraft.  Children ask a lot of questions, so I have to be prepared for the myriad of questions that come from them about the strangest of subjects.  Overall, it was an interesting week that allowed me to re-familiarize myself with the museum and get updated on new exhibits and aircraft.  I am told that there will be some research work and restoration work for next, so my duties will be expanded beyond the normal duties of a docent.