Nose Art Color Slides Schirmer

At the end of World War II, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (then Davis-Monthan Field) outside of Tucson, Arizona, was selected by the U. S. Army Air Forces as a storage site for hundreds of decommissioned aircraft, particularly excess Boeing B-29 Superfortresses and Douglas C-47 Skytrains. The C-47s began to arrive at the field in January 1946, and in September 1946, Lt. Colonel R. Frank Schirmer took command of the newly formed 4105th AAFBU (Acft. Stg.) [Army Air Forces Base Unit (Aircraft Storage)]. By 1947 a large number of B-29s had arrived at the field, and the 4105th began a preservation project to cocoon (or "mothball") a group of 479 B-29s. The cocooning process consisted of covering the aircraft with four layers of heavy sprayed-on plastic in four colors: yellow, red, black, and silver-the final coat was of heat-reflecting aluminum.