Doc’s Friends Kick Off Crowdfunding Effort For B-29


Doc’s Friends launched this week a 30-day Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign to raise money for completing the restoration of the B-29 Superfortress “Doc.” The aircraft, which is nearing certification and began its engine testing earlier this month, is awaiting an FAA airworthiness certificate. Doc’s Friends hope to have the B-29 take a first flight by the end of the year. In the meantime, the organization is soliciting donations to continue the test phase. The bulk of the funds, about $70,000, will go for fuel and oil, according to Doc’s Friends. Another $50,000 is for insurance, and other expenses include parts and equipment, maintenance and crew support.

The all-or-nothing campaign will allow the organization to receive the funding if donations totaling at least $137,500 are pledged by the morning of Oct. 30. As of noon Thursday, there were 161 backers and $19,485 pledged on the Kickstarter website. Doc, which was one of a squadron of World War II-era airplanes named after Snow White’s seven dwarfs, has undergone restoration work off and on for the last 28 years. Only one other B-29, Fifi, is flying. Doc was retrieved from the Mojave Desert in 1987 by Tony Mazzolini, who continues to be involved in the restoration. Doc’s Friends, a non-profit organization, formed in 2013 to see the project to completion, raising funds and receiving in-kind donations for the restoration work.