Sunteți pe pagina 1din 44

FEBRUARY 2012

I have insured my airplanes and my hangar with AUA for over twenty years and
I have insured my airplanes and my hangar with AUA for over twenty years and

I have insured my airplanes and my hangar with AUA for over twenty years and have always found them to be conscientious, highly professional and personable. I highly recommend AUA.

— Sue Dusenbury

Sue Dusenbury and her Private Airstrip in Walnut Cove, North Carolina. Sue is a long time member of the Vintage Division. She currently flies a C-180 and is rebuilding a Stinson SR2 from the ground up. AUA, Inc. has been able to provide Sue with affordable coverage for all her projects.

AUA writes coverage for all kinds of airports and hangars. We can also insure maintenance shops and provide hangarkeeper coverage. Call us for a quote today!

AUA is Vintage Aircraft Association approved. To become a member of VAA call 800-843-3612.

Aviation insurance with the EAA Vintage Program offers: Lower premiums with payment options Additional coverages
Aviation insurance with the EAA Vintage Program offers:
Lower premiums with payment options Additional coverages Flexibility on the use of your aircraft Experienced agents
On-line quote request available AUA is licensed in all states
Remember, We’re Better Together!
The best is affordable. Give AUA a call – it’s FREE!
800-727-3823
Fly with the pros… fly with AUA Inc.
is affordable. Give AUA a call – it’s FREE! 800-727-3823 Fly with the pros… fly with

www.auaonline.com

AIRPLANE FEBRUARY Vol. 40, No. 2 2012
AIRPLANE FEBRUARY
Vol. 40, No. 2
2012
CONTENTS
CONTENTS

2

Straight and Level

by Geoff Robison

No. 2 2012 CONTENTS 2 Straight and Level by Geoff Robison 3 5 13 20 26

3

5

13

20

26

30

32

34

36

37

39

News

Great-Granddad’s Airplane

Eric Rearwin: When personal and aviation histories cross by Budd Davisson

The Liberating Sky

Pioneering black pilots broke barriers and climbed to new heights, Part 2 by Philip Handleman

Light Plane Heritage

Twelve Thousand Miles in an Avro Avian, Part 2 by Bob Whittier

The Vintage Mechanic

Monocoque Structures by Robert G. Lock

The Vintage Instructor

Some things you learn after getting your certificate by Steve Krog, CFI

5
5
13 STAFF
13
STAFF

Mystery Plane

by H.G. Frautschy

Antiques Over the Chesapeake

by Roger Thiel

From the EAA Archives

Steve Wittman and the Standard J-1:

A barnstormers’s biplane earns its keep by H.G. Frautschy

Don Winslow of the Navy

by Bob O’Hara and H.G. Frautschy

Classifieds

EAA Publisher Director of EAA Publications Executive Director/Editor Business Manager Copy Editor

Publication Advertising:

Manager/Domestic, Sue Anderson

Rod Hightower J. Mac McClellan H.G. Frautschy Kathleen Witman Colleen Walsh

Tel: 920-426-6127

Email: sanderson@eaa.org

Fax: 920-426-4828

Senior Business Relations Mgr, Trevor Janz

Tel: 920-426-6809

Manager/European-Asian, Willi Tacke

Email: tjanz@eaa.org

Phone: +49(0)1716980871 Fax: +49(0)8841 / 496012

Classified Advertising Coordinator, Jo Ann Cody Simons

Email: willi@flying-pages.com

Tel: 920-426-6169

Email: classads@eaa.org

COVERS
COVERS

FRONT COVER: The Rear win Speedster , one of aviation’s most r ecognizable airplanes, a fact made even mor e remarkable when you fi nd out just how few wer e made. Eric Rear win, great-

grandson of Rae Rear win, the founder of the fi rm, teamed up with awar d-winning restorer Tim

Talen to tur n out this exceptional example of this rar

Read all about it in Budd Davisson’s ar

e Rear win. EAA photo by Steve Cukierski.

ticle beginning on page 5.

BACK COVER: One of aviation’s legends, Steve Wittman (left) poses with an Atwater Kent

radio perched on the horizontal tail of his Standar

tise the high-end radio brand for a wester article on page 36.

d J-1, which was used, in this case, to adver-

n Wisconsin dealer . For mor e on the photo, tur n to the

For missing or replacement magazines, or any other membership-related questions, please call EAA Member Services at 800- JOIN-EAA (564-6322).

any other membership-related questions, please call EAA Member Services at 800- JOIN-EAA (564-6322). VINTAGE AIRPLANE 1
STRAIGHT & LEVEL Geoff Robison EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, VAA Restoration and change W ith the flying
STRAIGHT & LEVEL
STRAIGHT & LEVEL

Geoff Robison

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, VAA

Restoration and change

W ith the flying season and the holidays well behind us now, I find myself in Oshkosh helping to ac-

complish more restoration work on the Harold Neumann Monocoupe project. It is currently in the VAA hangar in Oshkosh. We were able to make some real progress on the fu- selage last summer; we installed the 90AW Warner engine and the fully re- stored engine cowl. This all-volunteer initiative has been well-supported by many of the local members of VAA Chapter 37 based in Auburn, Indi- ana. The project lead volunteer is Phil Riter of Defiance, Ohio. Every time I look at the reworked engine cowl on this aircraft, I find myself staring at it in total amazement. Before Phil got his hands on it, that cowl looked like it fell off a truck going 55 mph. The result of Phil’s hard work is noth- ing short of amazing. Good luck with those wheelpants, buddy! This week we are working on get- ting a finish coat on the wing and flight controls. We are fortunate to have access to the paint booth at the EAA maintenance facility in Camp Scholler. This makes the job so much easier to complete. The 32-foot one- piece wing is so long it doesn’t fit un- less it’s set up diagonally to the corners of the paint booth, so you can at least walk around one end of it. As I write this, we now have nearly all of the con- trol surfaces in silver, and by the end of this week we will have everything painted in white. Then this spring, during one of our Vintage work parties in Oshkosh, we will have a sufficient number of VAA volunteers available to assist us with mating that large one- piece wing to the fuselage. This will be

2 FEBRUARY 2012

a great day! So, be sure to come inside the Vintage Hangar during AirVenture to check out the progress on the resto- ration of this truly historical aircraft.

User Fees

Last week the hot topic again be- came user fees. Here we go again! I really hate to have to say it, but, I told you so. It was just last month in this column that I openly stated that the issue was likely far from over, and low and behold, there are those in Con- gress who have begun to discuss the idea of proposing new legislation rec- ommending a $100 per flight user fee on GA aircraft for certain users. It seems like it was just last month that we waged this battle on user fees, but in spite of a high level of biparti- san opposition in the Congressional GA Caucus, it would appear that this issue is far from over. Even though the initial concept seems to exclude piston engine aircraft, we all really need to pay close attention to the fact that the devil is usually in the details of a negotiated piece of legislation that could likely have a very differ- ent odor to it. When I think of the potential results of legislation of this nature, it virtually makes me stutter. The primary issue that strikes fear in my heart is the idea that if user fees eventually become a reality to our seg- ment of aviation, a large segment of GA pilots will simply avoid using the system, and this will, without a doubt, compromise safety. Of course, there are more issues with user fees that make them ominous. To start with, the cur- rent fuel tax approach to funding the system is really working pretty well. Then, straight from the White House we hear, “We all need to do our part to

help develop funding that would sig- nificantly impact the federal deficit.” Pardon me? For the life of me I just cannot embrace the relevance of these two distinctly different issues when it comes to funding the ATC system. I better stop there before you all think I have completely fallen off the rail. Be assured that EAA remains on the front lines of battling these user fee initia- tives that could significantly challenge our ability to exercise our right to en- gage in recreational aviation. Now is the time for all of us to pay very close attention to the details of whatever legislation gets proposed, and if need be, we need to again let our collective voices be heard inside the beltway.

Changes

Lastly, I wanted to mention here that I arrived in Oshkosh the day after EAA President/CEO Rod Hightower and the EAA Executive Committee an- nounced a great number of changes in the structure of EAA staffing. I have been privileged to have had the op- portunity over the past 10 days to interact on these critical issues with the EAA board of directors and several members of the senior staff at EAA, in- cluding Rod Hightower, our founder Paul Poberezny, and the Executive Committee. I have walked away from this experience with a great deal of confidence that EAA will now be in a much better position to, as stated in one of EAA’s recent communications, to “align our resources with our priori- ties, which will allow us to more effec- tively meet the needs of our members, donors and aviators.”

with our priori- ties, which will allow us to more effec- tively meet the needs of
VAA NEWS
VAA NEWS
JIM KOEPNICK
JIM KOEPNICK

Reser ving your AirVenture 2012 adventur e is only a few clicks away .

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2012 Advance Purchase Tickets Now Available

Admission, camping, and air- craft rides

Advance purchase of admission tickets and camping are now avail- able for EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

2012. The 60th annual gathering will be held July 23-29 at Wittman Regional Airport. Both EAA members and non- members may purchase tickets in advance via a secure website, al- lowing them to speed through the admissions process when they ar-

rive on-site. Daily and weekly ad- missions are available; discounts are available to those who prepur- chase AirVenture tickets online be- fore June 15, 2012, including $2 off daily adult admissions and $5 off weekly adult admissions. Advance purchase camping for Camp Scholler, which opens on June 22, 2012, provides the convenience of express registration at the camp- ground entrance, including specially designated lines on peak arrival dates. Additionally, attendees can pre- purchase flights on EAA’s historic B-17 Aluminum Overcast or a vin- tage Ford Tri-Motor to avoid the lines and get more out of their Air- Venture experience. To access the advance ticketing area, visit www.AirVenture.org and click on the “Buy Tickets” link. Ad- vance online purchasers can also select from limited edition AirVen- ture merchandise. Advance admission ticketing is made possible through support from Jeppesen.

Top Performers Make Early Confirmations for AirVenture Matt Younkin The world’s top air show per
Top Performers Make Early Confirmations for AirVenture
Matt Younkin
The world’s top air show per formers are confirming for
AirVenture Oshkosh 2012. Scheduled to appear ar e Chuck
Aaron and the Red Bull aer obatic helicopter, the AeroShell
Aerobatic Team, Matt Younkin and his Twin Beech, Bob
Carlton and the Jet Sailplane, and the W arbird Spectacu-
lars (including expanded shows featuring pyr otechnics on
Friday and Satur day).
Also appearing will be Sean T ucker and his Pitts,
Gene Soucy and his Showcat, and Mike Goulian and his
Extra. In addition, Gr eg Koontz and the Alabama Boys
will help celebrate the 75th anniversar y of the Piper
Twin Beech
Cub, as will the r eturn of Kyle Franklin fl ying in his PA-18 Super Cub
comedy routine.
Additionally, the wildly popular Night Air Show and Fir eworks will be held on
Saturday, July 28, to thrill attendees with a mix of aer obatics and pyrotechnics
all musically chor eographed. Final schedules will be available in the weeks prior
to EAA AirV enture and will be announced on
www.AirVenture.org.
Daily air shows at EAA AirV enture are presented by Rockwell Collins.
DEKEVIN THORNTON

CALL FOR VINTAGE AIRCRAFT ASSOCIATION

Nominations

Nominate your favorite vintage aviator for the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association Hall of Fame. A great honor could be besto wed upon that man or woman wor king next to y ou on your airplane, sitting next to you in the chapter meeting, or walking next to y ou at EAA Air- Venture Oshkosh. Think about the people in your circle of aviation friends: the mechanic, historian, photographer, or pilot who has shared innumerable tips with you and with many oth- ers. They could be the next VAA Hall of Fame inductee—but only if they are nominated. The person you nominate can be a citiz en of any country and may be living or deceased; his or her involvement in vintage aviation must

have occurred between 1950 and the pr esent day. His or her contribution can be in the areas of flying, design, mechanical or aer odynamic developments, administration, writing, some other vital and relevant field, or any combina- tion of fields that support aviation. The person you nominate must be or hav e been a mem- ber of the Vintage Aircraft Association or the Antique/Classic Division of EAA, and pr efer- ence is given to those whose actions hav e con- tributed to the VAA in some way , perhaps as a volunteer, a restorer who shares his expertise with others, a writer, a photographer, or a pilot sharing stories, preserving aviation history, and encouraging new pilots and enthusiasts.

To nominate someone is easy. It just takes a little time and a little reminiscing on your part. •Think of a person; think of his or her contributions to vintage aviation. •Write those contributions in the various categories of the nomination form. •Write a simple letter highlighting these attributes and contributions. Make copies of newspaper or magazine articles that may substantiate your view. •If at all possible, have another individual (or more) complete a form or write a letter about this person, confirming why the person is a good candidate for induction. This year’s induction ceremony will be held near the end of October. We’ll have follow-up information once the date has been finalized. We would like to take this opportunity to mention that if you have nominated someone for the VAA Hall of Fame; nominations for the honor are kept on file for 3 years, after which the nomination must be resubmitted. Mail nominating materials to: VAA Hall of Fame, c/o Charles W. Harris, Transportation Leasing Corp. PO Box 470350 Tulsa, OK 74147 E-mail: cwh@hvsu.com Remember, your “contemporary” may be a candidate; nominate someone today!

Find the nomination form at www.VintageAircraft.org, or call the VAA office for a copy

(920-426-6110), or on your own sheet of paper, simply include the following information:

• Date submitted.

• Name of person nominated.

• Address and phone number of nominee.

• E-mail address of nominee.

• Date of birth of nominee. If deceased, date of death.

• Name and relationship of nominee’s closest living relative.

• Address and phone of nominee’s closest living relative.

• VAA and EAA number, if known. (Nominee must have been or is a VAA member.)

• Time span (dates) of the nominee’s contributions to vintage aviation. (Must be between 1950 to present day.)

• Area(s) of contributions to aviation.

• Describe the event(s) or nature of activities the nominee has undertaken in aviation to be worthy of induction into the VAA Hall of Fame.

• Describe achievements the nominee has made in other related fields in aviation.

• Has the nominee already been honored for his or her involvement in aviation and/or the contribution you are stating in this petition? If yes, please explain the nature of the honor and/or award the nominee has received.

• Any additional supporting information.

• Submitter’s address and phone number, plus e-mail address.

• Include any supporting material with your petition.

Chapter Websites

In early summer last year, EAA officially launched the long- awaited Chapter Website pro- gram, which helps ensure that every chapter has an online pres- ence. The websites are provided free of charge (including design and hosting) and are supported through Webs.com. The sites feature:

Easy-to-use tools (no experi- ence required) Professional design Customized content for indi- vidual EAA chapters One of the first steps all chap- ters should take is to make sure your events are entered into the EAA Calendar of Events. The cal- endar software automatically feeds your chapter’s website. It is an easy way to keep your members— and potential members—updated on your chapter’s events. Not only will it post them automatically, it removes them after the event is over, so “old news” never appears on your home or events pages. You can view a few chapter web- site examples by logging on to:

www.1246.EAAChapter.org

www.252.EAAChapter.org

EAA Online Community Man- ager Hal Bryan hosted a webinar on the chapter websites in mid- July. You can watch it online by logging onto http://bcove.me/ zwmrk3xw. Bryan explains the ba- sic features of the sites and pro- vides some valuable tips to help you start customizing your site. This chapter benefit is made pos- sible through the Peter Burgher Chapter Development Fund. For more information on this great enhancement to our chapters pro- gram, you can contact the EAA Chapters office at chapters@eaa.org or by phone at 920-426-4876.

pro- gram, you can contact the EAA Chapters office at chapters@eaa.org or by phone at 920-426-4876.
Great-Granddad’s AIRPLANE
Great-Granddad’s
AIRPLANE

Eric Rearwin: When personal and aviation histories cross

BY BUDD DAVISSON

STEVE CUKIERSKI

W

HEN I WAS GROWING UP,” SAYS ERIC

Rearwin, “None of us kids ac- tually knew that much about what our great-granddad and

our grandparents had done. For whatever reason, our parents just didn’t talk about it much. That chapter of family history was very hazy to me. However, when my granddad started taking me to fly-ins with him and I saw airplanes with my last name on them, it all became very real.”

STEVE CUKIERSKI

One of the lost r ecognizable profiles in aviation, the Rear win Speedster , enjoys a r eputation that is lar ger than the relatively small pr oduction numbers would nor mally indicate. The sleek installation of the four-cylinder Menasco engine (or the Cir rus Hi-Drive in the pr ototype her e) made the airplane a favorite of model airplane enthusiasts.

The “granddad” he’s referring to was Ken Rearwin, who was sales manager for the Rearwin Aircraft Company from 1929 until it was sold to Commonwealth in 1942. He was the son of the company’s founder, Andrew “Rae” Rearwin, and both he and his brother, Royce, were active in the company. While the name Rearwin isn’t as well-known as Piper, Cessna, Beech, etc., the company was, nonethe- less, a serious player during the 1930s, producing more than 400 aircraft, almost all of which are bet- ter known to modelers than they are to the full-scale aviation com- munity. The modelers know them well because two of the Rearwin variants, the Speedster and the Cloudster, have such classic lines and are such good fliers that they are ready-made for free-flight and radio-controlled modeling subjects. Looking back at the birth of the Rearwin Aircraft factory from this

point in history, it’s a little hard to put in context. For one thing, the year was 1929 and the economy was in the process of tanking. The stock market had “split-S’ed” into the ground, and every economic indicator was massively negative. Sound familiar? Businesses were failing right and left, yet young businessmen with names like Cessna, Beech, and Stearman were taking huge leaps of faith and start- ing airplane companies. These were real American entrepreneurs in ev- ery sense of the word, and Rae Rear- win was right in the middle of the fray with them. Rae was a little different than many of his aviation pioneer peer group in three prominent ways. First, he wasn’t as young as the rest and had two grown sons, Ken and Royce. Second, he was an already established businessman/entrepre- neur, and third, he wasn’t a pilot. What attracted him to aviation

was simple: He thought it to be a growing industry that would have plenty of room for a businessman with his acumen. Rae hired the skills he needed, including the designers who de- signed the initial Rearwin, an open- cockpit biplane that was built in a garage and named after his sons, the Ken-Royce. The year was 1929 and only a few were produced, with reportedly only one surviving to- day. However, as he looked around,

he saw the need for smaller aircraft. In 1930-31 he had the Junior, a parasol, designed, and around 1932 he commissioned the design of the

6000 Speedster.

Eric Rearwin says, “The 6000 Speedster series were so sleek and good looking that they are what

many people think of when they hear the name Rearwin. The original

1934 prototype S/N 301 had various

problems in gaining certification, specifically the spin recovery. It ap-

GILLE AULLARD PHOTOS
GILLE AULLARD PHOTOS

Tim Talen restor ed the Speedster for Eric Rearwin at his Jasper , Oregon-based res- toration company, the Ragwood Refactor y.

Oregon-based res- toration company, the Ragwood Refactor y. With a Car well bubble-faced compass anchoring the

With a Car well bubble-faced compass anchoring the center of the panel, the Speedster has the minimum required cadre of instr uments.

pears that rather than try to ‘fix’ that airplane, they canceled the N number and used the fuselage re- numbered as S/N 302 for all further work. So, our airplane, even though numbered 302, actually is the origi- nal prototype and was retained by the company to be the factory dem- onstrator. The Cirrus Hi-Drive en- gine was used, but by the time the airplane was going to go into pro- duction, Cirrus was out of business. However, the 125-hp Menasco en- gine was readily available and, in truth, a much better engine. Better yet, it fit into the Speedster with al- most no modifications.” Although the economy was suf- fering terribly, there was still a market for an airplane like the Speedster, but the company didn’t have a Menasco-powered one to show to the public. So, many of the early Speedster ads actually featured the Cirrus-powered prototype air- plane, even though they were sell-

ing Menasco-powered Speedsters. From initial flight to production of the 6000M (“M” for Menasco) four critical years had elapsed, al- lowing many other companies to move far ahead of Rearwin, so only a little more than a dozen Speedsters were built. In typical entrepreneurial fash- ion, since one engine wasn’t working out, Rae Rearwin went looking for others and in the pro- cess bought the LeBlond Engine Company in 1938. He quickly re- named it the Ken-Royce Engine Company, and they redesigned the older Junior with a cabin to take that little five-cylinder, round mo- tor. Named the Sportster, at first, the engine hung mostly out in the wind with a narrow Townend speed ring attempting to streamline it. Then, in an effort to modernize the design, they completely redesigned the Speedster fuselage, widening it for side-by-side seating, changing

to the oleo-spring landing gear of the Sportster, and fairing the en- gine in with a complete cowling. That became the famous Cloudster, one of the cutest little airplanes of its day, and it was fairly successful, with more than 120 rolling off the line before World War II. [See the October 2010 issue of Vintage Air- plane for an article on the Cloud- ster and the January 2011 issue for

a story on the Speedster.—Editor] In 1942 Rearwin sold the com- pany to Commonwealth, who pro- duced 275 of the Rearwin-designed Skyrangers through 1946. By that time they had settled on a more “modern” engine, the superlative Continental C-85. The Common-

wealth Skyranger is still visible in the vintage aircraft arena, as quite

a few have survived. However, the

earlier airplanes, especially the Speedster, were rare to begin with and are almost nonexistent today. Eric Rearwin says, “My grandfa-

STEVE CUKIERSKI

Tim Talen flies the tall high-winger near the EAA Seaplane Base southeast of Oshkosh.

ther was periodically hunting down Rearwins of different models and getting them placed in museums. So, when I started spending time with him, I became aware of the history that each airplane repre-

sented. As I got older, I didn’t make

a conscious decision to find Rear-

wins, but, little by little, I guess the same thing that drove my grand- father took root in me. Also, Bill Wright wrote a book on Rearwins about that time, and that really got my interest going. So, in 2004, when I heard about a Speedster for sale in Washington, I was already thinking in that direction. When

I learned it was a Cirrus-powered

Speedster, which made it the proto- type, my interest was really piqued. “I took the train to Washing- ton,” he says, “to look at the air- plane, knowing full well that I wasn’t qualified to tell how much work the airplane actually needed. However, I knew enough to judge how complete the airplane was. If it had been heavily modified or many

parts were missing, I’m not certain

I would have continued with the

project. Although, as driven as I was, the airplane would have had to be a real mess to keep me from following through with the project. The truth is, I couldn’t not do it. “What I found, when I got there, was a very complete airplane that had been owned by the same gen- tleman for something over 30 years. He really loved the airplane but had finally come to the conclu-

sion that he was never going to re- store it, so he sold it to me. “When we lost my grandfather in 2001, he left me a little inheri- tance,” Eric says, “and that was the seed money for this project. Even though the rest of my family tried to talk some sense into my head, I couldn’t think of anything I’d rather do with that modest sum than buy and restore a Rearwin. Especially one as historic as Speedster S/N 302.

I didn’t see it as an airplane so much as a family historical artifact that needed to be preserved.”

So, now Eric had bought a tan- gible link to his family’s past, but it was a tired, badly deteriorated link that was going to require a lot of TLC that Eric wasn’t capable of giving. Besides not being a pi- lot, Eric knew he had neither the skills nor the time to bring the air- plane up to the level of perfection he was looking for and which the airplane deserved. Eric says, “I started looking around for someone to do the res- toration and almost immediately ran across Tim Talen. Besides be- ing well-known for a wide range of restorations, it turns out Tim had done a Rearwin/Commonwealth or two and actually knew S/N 302. So, Tim took a trailer from his shop in Jasper, Oregon, up to Washington and retrieved the airplane.” Tim’s company, The Ragwood Refactory (cool name, Tim!), has done award-winning vintage/an- tique restorations ranging from the first Taylor J-2 Cub to leave the Lock Haven factory to hulking bi-

planes of all types, so he was an old hand at restoring vintage aircraft such

planes of all types, so he was an old hand at restoring vintage aircraft such as the Speedster. Tim picks up the story and says, “When we got the airplane home and started taking it apart, it became apparent that although the airplane didn’t appear to have been in a seri- ous wreck in its lifetime, practically every square inch, both inside and out, needed total restoration. “The wings, for instance,” he says, “were not only badly dete- riorated but had a few things the later production airplanes didn’t have. In fact, this was true for lots of parts of the airplane. It may have been the second one built, but it was still very much a prototype. For instance, the ailerons on 302 are welded steel tube structures, while the later ones are built-up wood. On top of that, the later wings had a slightly wider chord, so the aile- rons on 302, which were a carry- over from 301, have aluminum extensions fastened to the trailing edge to make them wider.”

He continues, “The wings them- selves were an interesting mess. I say ‘interesting’ because besides the obvious deterioration…most of the wood was delaminating or rotting… the ribs were ‘modified,’ and I say modified with quotes because what had been done was almost comical. “In the first place the ribs used

a Warren truss pattern, meaning there are no verticals in the truss, only diagonals, so the truss pattern resembles a bunch of wide W’s side- by-side. This leaves long sections of the rib surface unsupported, and they apparently started to lose their curve and flatten out. At some point in the old girl’s life a help- ful mechanic decided to put verti- cal members between each W. That would have been fine, but he did

it without uncovering the wings.

Essentially, he just poked a hole in the wings everywhere he wanted to put a vertical. Then he cut a piece of rib stock to size, lathered up both ends with glue, and pushed

it through the hole. Not a very el-

egant, or structural, repair. The later production ribs went to the Pratt truss pattern that has verticals. So, we totally rebuilt the ribs. Plus the spars were delaminating and some of the splices were letting go, so we kept all the metal but replaced all the wood in the wings. “All of the wood work was done by Kenyon Solecki, a young high- schooler I took under my wing, but he didn’t need much teaching,” Talen says. “He was just naturally good, and I only had to tell him something once. “Where the airplane sat in Wash- ington for so many years,” Talen says, “it rains every day, often all day, so the condition of the wood was to be expected. We expected the fuselage to be the same kind of mess, but, all things considered, it wasn’t bad at all. It was about the same as any other tubing fuselage, meaning we replaced about 8 feet of the bottom longerons and replaced a few other small pieces, but that was it. The fuselage is wildly com-

GILLES AULIARD

Gilles Auliard captures the nar row fuselage pr ofile and beautifully fair ed landing gear in this action shot.

plicated in terms of the number of tubing pieces in it, and if it had been as deteriorated as the wings, it would have been a nightmare. “The same thing was true of the landing gear, thank goodness. It was in decent condition,” Tim says and laughs. “No offense to Rear- win, but the landing gear looks as if it was designed in a bar and grill, and they never made it to the grill.

From the outside, with the fairings on it, it looks as if it’s a single-strut unit, but inside those fairings is a ton of tubing. Each leg is a V with another piece of tube in the middle that hooks into bungees. It is one of the most unique landing gears I’ve ever seen, and now that I’ve flown it, I’d also say it’s one of the bounci- est. If I’m not right on my game, I’ll get a bounce without even trying.

“No offense to Rearwin, but the landing gear looks as if it was designed in a bar and grill, and they never made it to the grill.”

“Incidentally, almost every piece of wood for the fuselage was there, but virtually none of it was usable. All of the plywood in the airplane, which includes the fuselage formers, had given up and was coming apart. “It took us forever to get the air- frame ready for cover,” Tim says, “and when we did, we used Poly- Fiber and Poly-Tone with Aero-Thane clear top coat, all the way through.” One of the major attractions to the Speedster series is the shape of the nose. The nose fits the name, Speedster, or vice versa, because it just screams speed. Besides its looks, one reason the modelers love it is because the nose shape is so easy to fit almost any model engine into and keep total scale appear-

AULIARD GILLES AULIARDGILLES

AULIARD GILLES AULIARDGILLES The wing tanks of the Rear win can also feed fuel to the

The wing tanks of the Rear win can also feed fuel to the Cir rus from both at the same time.

also feed fuel to the Cir rus from both at the same time. Like most of

Like most of the airplanes of the 1930s and 1940s, the occasional car trim part is used in the constr uction of this antique airplane. This automotive

window crank handle becomes the elevator trim handle for the Rear

win.

ance. Unfortunately, as magical as

the Rearwin Speedster schnoz may be, it is another nightmare, as Talen says, to restore. “The good news,” he says, “is that we had the entire cowling. All of it. The bad news is that it was

a patchwork quilt of patches with

new patches patching old patches.

If that’s hard to say, it’s even harder

to repair. First, the cowling is made entirely of SO aluminum, mean-

ing it is dead soft. So, you can bend

it with your fingers. Also, it loves

to crack, which it appears to have done at every opportunity during

its lifetime. So, while we had an en- tire cowling, there wasn’t a single piece of it that didn’t need welding, massaging, reshaping, or all three. Making it a lot worse was that the cowling is where your eye goes the second you see the airplane. So, we had to get it right. The only way to do that and avoid using tons of Bondo was to throw time and el- bow grease at it. And to not get in a hurry. The slower you work, the smaller your mistakes are, and you don’t want to be constantly correct- ing your corrections.” The cowling was shaped to the

Cirrus, and of all the question marks in the airplane, the engine was certainly the biggest one. And

still is. Only a small number of air- craft contemporary to the Speed- ster used the Cirrus in any form, the Great Lakes probably being the most common. But the so-called Hi-Drive Cirrus, meaning it was in- verted with the crankshaft on top, saw very little use partially because its reliability was so poor. Tim says, “Right from the begin- ning, we knew we had to pay special attention to the engine, since we expected to be flying the airplane a fair amount. When you know you have to cross the Cascades or Rock- ies—we can go up the gorge and avoid the Cascades—to get almost anywhere, especially to Oshkosh, you tend to be more serious about your engines. Curiously, the engine that was in the Speedster when we retrieved it, S/N 2062, is the actual engine that was in it when the air- plane was built. For an airplane that old, that is almost unheard of. And, even after all those years in the Pa- cific Northwest’s weather, it wasn’t

a rusty chunk of iron. This was be-

cause the Cirrus is well known to be

a ‘leaker’ so it was totally covered

in oily grime, and it couldn’t have rusted if it wanted to. All we had to do was figure out ways around its

weak points to make it into a reli- able engine, relatively speaking. “Most Cirrus problems are cen- tered around its top end, which is actually the bottom end on an in- verted engine because the cylinders

point down. Everything having to do with the valve train on the en- gine is frustratingly fragile or poorly designed. So, we did our best to work around the known trouble spots.” Al Holloway in Quincy, Califor- nia, an antique engine specialist, was entrusted with building the en- gine, which included chrome cylin- ders and bringing all the specs up to new standards. When he was done, he bolted it to the test stand and put five hours on it before shipping

it to Tim, at which point the gotta-

get-it-done-for-Oshkosh frenzy,

STEVE CUKIERSKI
STEVE CUKIERSKI

which seems so common in sport aviation, kicked into high gear. “We were working right down to the wire, literally,” he remem- bers. “When we left for Oshkosh, we had exactly an hour and a half on the airplane in two hops, and away we went.” Flying nearly halfway across the country behind a Cirrus is an ad- venture many people wouldn’t want to be involved in, but Tim says, “We did a round robin that included Oshkosh, Blakesburg the next month, and Reno after that without the Cirrus missing a lick. And I have to say that landing at Rawlins, Wyoming, with the den- sity altitude at 9,000-10,000 feet was wild! The sagebrush on final was just a blur as it flashed past. On departure headed home, it was just the reverse: Although it was an early-morning launch, I used a lot

of the 7,000-foot runway, and once it got off the ground, I had the op- portunity to closely inspect the lo- cal sagebrush, as I tried to coax the airplane into gaining altitude.” Tim says that based on his own experience with the Cirrus, he’s convinced the engine’s reputation is based on old wives’ tales com- ing out of experiences pilots had in the ’50s and ’60s, when a lot of the engines were just cobbled to- gether. He says that most of the pilots who flew them when they were new in the ’30s had the same experience he had. He says, “I think it’s probably only a 200-400 hour engine, but if it is rebuilt correctly and main- tained right, it’s as reliable as any engine from that period of time.” Summing up the trip, Tim says, “At Oshkosh and Blakesburg, peo- ple really appreciated seeing the

airplane. We had a lot of good con- versations with people about it. At Reno, it was out of its element. The majority of people came to see the big iron, so it was understandable that they didn’t know the airplane.” Eric Rearwin says, “I didn’t know what to expect, but I was really grat- ified at the reception we received at Oshkosh and Blakesburg. It made it all worth it. I can take none of the credit for the restoration, but I’m proud to see my great-granddad’s airplane out there again. “From this point on, I’m hoping a museum will buy it and put it on dis- play. Maybe fly it from time to time. Regardless, I accomplished what I set out to do, and we put a historic old Rearwin back into the air.” Those of us who had never seen a Speedster want to thank Tim and Eric for their efforts. It’s wonderful to see an icon back in its element.

want to thank Tim and Eric for their efforts. It’s wonderful to see an icon back

The Liberating Sky

Pioneering black pilots broke barriers and climbed to new heights

PART 2

Last month’s column provided an overview of the great strides made by the earliest African American aviators. The inspiring story of the succeeding generation of black pilots in pursuit of lofty dreams despite the enormous bar- riers that threatened to block the way is told in this second and concluding installment. These men and women of the air followed in the exemplary tradi- tion of those who had come before, and they upheld it for those who came next.

Proving Proficiency and Sowing the Dream: Cross-Country Adventurers

During the Golden Age of Flight, three two-man teams of African American fliers made headlines in the black press because of their precedent-setting long-distance flights. The first of these was under- taken by pilot James Herman Ban- ning and mechanic Thomas Cox Allen. In September and October 1932, the twosome became the first blacks to make a transcontinental flight. It was a harrowing trek that had hinged upon the men’s ability to mine the depths of their charac- ter for every ounce of perseverance. Growing up, Banning dreamed of becoming a pilot. However, when he set out to obtain flight in- struction in Chicago in the early 1920s he was rejected at every air- port in the city that he visited in a repeat of the unfortunate snubbing suffered by Bessie Coleman. Ban- ning’s break came when an Army aviator in Des Moines, Iowa, agreed to give him lessons. Once certificated, Banning em- barked on a barnstorming career.

BY PHILIP HANDLEMAN

em- barked on a barnstorming career. BY P HILIP H ANDLEMAN James Herman Banning barnstormed in

James Herman Banning barnstormed in the Midwest. He named his bi- plane Miss Ames, reflecting his student years at Iowa State College in Ames, Iowa. The difficulties in making a livelihood as a barnstormer eventually caused him to join William J. Powell’s all-black air shows in Los Angeles. In September and October 1932, he and mechanic Thomas Cox Allen became the first blacks to fly across the United States.

He flew a biplane emblazoned with the name Miss Ames, which re- flected his years at Iowa State Col- lege in Ames. As romantic as the life of a vagabond of the air may be in the abstract, flying the Midwest- ern circuit proved difficult in terms of making ends meet. In 1931, Banning was persuaded to join William J. Powell’s Los An- geles-based flying circus named in

memory of Coleman. He dazzled audiences at the all-black air shows that Powell staged in southern Cali- fornia. By 1932, momentum had built for a flight across the country to showcase the aeronautical acu- men of black fliers and thereby at- tract more blacks to the world of aviation. The idea fit Powell’s objec- tives exactly, and Banning was the perfect pilot to pull it off.

In July 1933, C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson, left, and Dr. Albert E. Forsythe teamed up

In July 1933, C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson, left, and Dr. Albert E. Forsythe teamed up for the first successful round-trip transcontinental flight by black pilots. The next year they organized a goodwill flight to islands in the Caribbean.

The most serious impediment to staging the flight was a lack of funds. Allen, a transplanted Okla- homan, was chosen to ride along, for he brought two vital elements, expertise as a mechanic and a little extra cash. In fact, by the time Ban- ning and Allen took off from Dy- cer Field in Los Angeles on the first leg of their cross-country jaunt, Al- len’s monetary contribution had been largely expended on prepa- ratory aspects of the flight. At the launch, the fliers’ wallets reportedly contained a combined total of only $25. They were committed to beg, borrow, and cajole along the way to complete the flight. It isn’t without cause that they called themselves the “Flying Hobos.” A black businessman lent the two fliers his Alexander Eaglerock, a diminutive biplane noted for its long and slender fuselage. A ma- trix of thick struts and crisscrossing bracing wires connected the two

wings in a solid truss arrangement. The engine was temperamental and forced multiple emergency land- ings during the cross-country flight. One of those episodes occurred while Banning and Allen neared St. Louis. On the ground, the two fliers were virtually helpless to make the repairs, for they lacked the neces- sary parts and tools. Their historic odyssey was at risk of being aborted. Only a helping hand from local resi- dents could restore the biplane to airworthy status so the high-minded mission might resume. In a remarkable gesture of good- will, white students at a vocational school in proximity to the disabled aircraft pitched in to get the airmen back into the sky. The incident was emblematic of a slowly emerging universality, attendant to the fly- ing milieu much as the pioneering pilots had dreamed. The trip con- tinued all the way to Long Island, New York, where after more than

three weeks of braving faulty equip- ment, storms, penuriousness, and assorted other adversities, the ad- venturers were welcomed as the toast of the town. Black newspapers hailed the achievement, and New York Mayor Jimmy Walker presented the fliers with the key to the city. Their glory was short-lived, though, for the Ea- glerock was destroyed during the return flight. Banning died the next year as a passenger in a plane crash. Allen, the luckier of the duo, lived to a ripe old age, happily immersed in aviation. It’s said that records are made to be broken. If that adage is true, then surely one of its proofs is the round-trip transcontinental flight by C. Alfred Anderson and Albert E. Forsythe in 1933. This was the first time black pilots flew across the country and back again. Forsythe was an affluent medical doctor in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Unlike most blacks who dreamed of flying during the Depression, he had the financial resources to pay for instruction. In the early 1930s, he was among only ten African Americans to hold a pilot’s license. Well before William Powell’s book was published, Forsythe believed fer- vently in aviation as a means to a bet- ter future for the black community. He envisioned a flight across America to dramatize the point. When Ban- ning and Allen beat him to it, he rea- soned that a round-trip attempt, if successful, would constitute the next logical milestone in the evolving an- nals of black aviation. Sharing Forsythe’s enthusiasm for such an ambitious undertaking was Anderson, the African Ameri- can pilot who had accumulated the most flight hours up to that point and the only one at the time to possess a transport pilot’s license. Anderson had been so determined to fly that when no flight school would take him as a student, he bought an airplane with his hard- earned savings and hired an in- structor for one-on-one lessons. In the years to come, Anderson

gained a special place in the pantheon of black pilots. When the renowned Tuskegee Institute in Alabama sought to hire a chief flight instructor for its new civilian flight training program in the late 1930s, it was Anderson who got the job. Because of his posi- tion, he was often called “Chief” and the nickname stuck. In March 1941, during a visit to the institute by Eleanor Roosevelt, Anderson was tapped to give the first lady a scenic flight over the local area in one of the school’s Piper Cubs. A picture of a smiling Mrs. Roosevelt in the backseat, wearing one of her sig- nature flowered hats and with Chief at the controls up front, was taken of the amazing scene. Shortly after- ward, the Army Air Corps started its historic flight training program for blacks at the institute. Throughout World War II, An- derson oversaw the primary flight instruction for the aspiring pilots who later became known as the Tuskegee Airmen. But that was in the future. For now, Anderson served as the lead pilot for the round-trip transcontinental flight, and Forsythe, while assisting in flying duties, more importantly provided the platform, a newly ac- quired cabin monoplane. Departing Atlantic City on July 17, 1933, the pair of aviators en- countered dense fog early in the flight. After a brief delay, they re- sumed their journey without fur- ther setbacks. They spread their message of aviation’s possibilities at refueling stops along the way. Upon reaching their destination of Los Angeles, they were rushed at the airport by an adoring crowd. Powell was one of the well-wishers. Celebrations followed and dignitar- ies praised the two aviators. On the return leg, Anderson and Forsythe retraced the outbound route to their starting point on the East Coast. They landed 11 days after they had set out to establish the new record for black pilots. In doing so, they had reinforced the point that aviation was a field in which people of color could excel.

It followed that a pilot’s pigmenta- tion was extraneous. The Anderson-Forsythe flight also showcased the rapidly advanc- ing technical progress in aeronau- tics. Flying was transitioning from a daring silk-scarf exertion to a pre- dictable workaday affair. The dif- ference in equipment and even clothing used in their flight versus what was used in the Banning- Allen flight of just a year before reflected this fact. Anderson and Forsythe made their flight in the highly regarded Fairchild 24, a high-wing design with an enclosed cabin. Old-style open-cockpit barnstorming was re- placed by a modern businessman’s way of flying. Suits and ties substi- tuted for goggles and leather jack- ets. Moreover, while their flight in the Pride of Atlantic City—as Forsythe had christened the Fair- child—was essentially a grassroots effort, it enjoyed the blessings of organizations like the National Ur- ban League, a leading civil rights group concerned with jobs and eco- nomic well-being. In the fall of 1934, Anderson and Forsythe set out on an even more ambitious flight. To highlight their message of interracial harmony, they plotted a course to no less than ten islands in the Caribbean from Nassau to Trinidad. It was a bold gambit, involving long stretches of overwater flight at a time when nav- igational devices were still relatively primitive. Hazards included a leg of their trip that ran into the darkness of night and some landing sites that were nothing more than dirt strips. For this island-hopping ex- cursion they selected a Lambert Monocoupe. It had a similar con- figuration to the Fairchild, which involved side-by-side seating, but it featured a more streamlined fu- selage and was outfitted with wheel fairings. At an elegant outdoor cer- emony attended by the Tuskegee Institute’s second president, Robert R. Moton, they commemorated the memory of the institute’s famous founder by naming the airplane the

Spirit of Booker T. Washington . At stops on the Pan American Goodwill Flight, Anderson and Forsythe received friendly greet- ings from government officials and ordinary people. The black press cheered the long leaps to foreign territories. Here were a couple of fine men using aviation to engen- der warm relations with America’s neighbors offshore and well to the south. The U.S. State Department saw the value in such a mission and gave its full support. The adventure, which had ac- complished most of its goals, came to an abrupt end on the return leg when the airplane incurred dam- age taking off from an improvised runway. In the booklet accompany- ing the authoritative Black Wings exhibit, the National Air and Space Museum’s curators summarized the flight’s impact by noting that it had “attracted worldwide atten- tion.” They concluded, “At home, the flight provided the black com- munity with a sense of pride. Both Anderson and Forsythe hoped the long-distance flight would inspire black youth to see in aviation a new avenue for advancement.” Within a half-dozen years fol- lowing Coleman’s untimely death, devotees of the daredevil exhibition pilot were transforming Chicago into a center of black flying. One of the leaders in the movement was Cornelius R. Coffey, a studious and enterprising individual who had an aptitude for mechanical work. In 1931, he and his friend John C. Robinson graduated in the first class to accept blacks at the city’s Curtiss- Wright Aeronautical School. Coffey ranked at the top of his class and Robinson placed second. Around this time the one Chi- cago area airport that had permit- ted blacks to fly was closed for good. In response, Coffey and Rob- inson led a handful of black pilots and supporters in the formation of the Challenger Air Pilots Associa- tion. The new group bought prop- erty for an airport on the outskirts of the city. Sadly the fledgling air-

A symbolic gesture by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt had the substantive effect of jump-starting the

A symbolic gesture by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt had the substantive effect of jump-starting the Army flight training program for blacks at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. While on a visit to the institute in March 1941, she went for a local scenic flight in a Piper Cub with C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson at the controls. Never before had a member of any first family been taken aloft by an African American pilot.

port in the black township of Rob- bins southwest of Chicago was irretrievably damaged a year later when a severe storm blew down the hangar and wrecked the few light- planes stored on the premises. Rather than give up, the group secured flying privileges from the enlightened operator of Harlem Airport situated a short distance to the north. Coffey formed his own flight school at the new loca- tion. He hoped to make it easier for blacks to learn to fly and thereby fulfill Coleman’s unfinished dream of fostering more African American pilots. Some extraordinary person- alities came within Coffey’s orb. His friend Robinson left for Ethi- opia in 1936 to advise Emperor Hailie Selassie on aviation matters during the African country’s struggle to repel the invading forces of Ital- ian dictator Benito Mussolini. Willa Brown, endowed with a spunky de- meanor and striking good looks, became the first African American female to be certificated as a pilot

in the United States, and she served as a powerful booster of flying in the black community. Harold Hurd,

a fellow graduate of the Curtiss-

Wright school, had a distinguished

aviation career that included a stint

at Tuskegee during the war.

In the late 1930s, the possibility of global conflict intensified as the Axis powers increasingly flexed their muscles. In recognition of the threat, the Roosevelt administration aimed to create a program that would pro-

duce thousands of new civilian pi- lots eligible to serve in the nation’s military air arm. Black flying enthu- siasts, like those in Chicago, along with leading civil rights advocates, didn’t want blacks left behind. The Chicago group reconstituted itself as the National Airmen’s As- sociation, and one of the first or- ders of business was deciding to send a couple of their members on a flight to Washington for the purposes of lobbying Congress and rallying public support for the in- clusion of blacks. The two pilots

chosen for this high-profile flight could hardly have been more dis- parate. Dale Lawrence White was

a quiet and serious man who ex-

uded a Rock of Gibraltar steadiness,

whereas Chauncey Edward Spencer was an effervescent charmer, gush- ing enthusiasm and favored with movie-star charisma. Given the association’s inade- quate finances, funding the flight was a real chore. By one account, Spencer raised $1,000 from the Jones brothers, prosperous black businessmen in Chicago whose var-

ied interests were reputed to include

a hand in the city’s numbers racket.

Reportedly, only after Spencer broke out in tears over the prospect of not being able to fly to Washington be- cause of a lack of money did he suc- ceed in persuading the Joneses to make the donation. On a crisp morning in May 1939, a rented and nearly worn-out crimson-and-cream Lincoln-Page biplane took off from one of Har- lem Airport’s grass runways, headed east in the direction of the nation’s capital. The fragile, decade-old ship was propitiously yet incongruously nicknamed Old Faithful. Spencer and White were on their way, carry- ing the hopes and dreams not only of their Chicago colleagues but of African Americans nationwide who followed riveting accounts of the flight in the black press. Before the day was over, the weary Lincoln-Page had precipi- tated three forced landings, the last being the most serious. The engine’s crankshaft had broken at cruise, which turned the heavily laden ship into a faltering glider. White was the more accomplished pilot, so he was on the controls. He masterfully guided the stricken air- craft onto a farmer’s field, narrowly averting collision with a barn. The downed pilots were gripped by concern over how they would be received as black men dropping un- announced into a small Ohio farm community. As they dismounted from their disabled biplane, they felt heightened trepidation over the

prospect of meeting the farmer and his neighbors. If the community into which they had descended by a quirk of fate proved to be hostile, it might mean the end of the flight or worse. Fortuitously the farmer harbored no racial prejudice. Edward Miller, a lifelong farmer whose German ancestors settled in the area many years before, heartily welcomed the two unexpected visitors who had quite literally fallen from the sky. In fact, Miller arranged meals and lodging for the fatigued pilots at a tavern in town. Meanwhile Spencer and White sent word of the needed repair to Coffey back in Chicago. Two days later, after raising $54 for the needed parts, Coffey arrived by car to start work on the engine and get Old Faithful back into the air. The townspeople hadn’t had excite- ment like this at any time in mem- ory. As word spread, they came to see the biplane and lent a helping hand with every opportunity. They also picked up the tab for the fliers’ stay.

Miller’s children didn’t want the fliers to leave. Spencer and White looked so gallant in their custom khaki flight outfits; they brought a previously unseen panache into the life of the sleepy farmstead. The ex- troverted Spencer especially evoked the swashbuckler’s persona. Indeed, more than a half-century later, one of those children said, “The experience with Chauncey is the most wondrous thing that happened to me in my whole life. It gives you a good heart.” The fliers were thankful for their re- prieve and resumed the flight as soon as the engine fired back up. In his au- tobiography published 36 years later, Spencer wrote of his hosts: “They

were a gracious group of people

During subsequent stops, not ev- eryone was so kind. At an airport in West Virginia, the two pilots weren’t permitted to stay over- night; they were shooed away. In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, they had a run-in with authorities who threatened to ground them. At their main destination of Washington, Spencer and White were escorted through the halls of

.”

Congress by Edgar G. Brown—a civil rights activist and representa- tive of government employees— who knew his way around Capitol Hill. Among the Congressmen to whom the fliers were introduced was the silken-voiced Everett Dirk- sen, Republican of Illinois. Spencer was particularly put off by this en- counter because it seemed to him that Dirksen was interested only in the photo op. It’s entirely possible that Dirksen was motivated by expediency, but he did sponsor a nondiscrimina- tion clause in civil aeronautics leg- islation. Even more momentous, a generation later as Senate minority leader he threw his weight behind the landmark civil rights legislation masterminded by his political nem- esis President Lyndon Johnson. The highlight of the lobby- ing effort came inadvertently. As the fliers and their escort were be- tween Congressional visits, walk- ing down a stairwell, a little-known

senator from Missouri came upon them and recognized Brown. They talked, and the senator, Harry Tru- man, agreed to meet with Spencer and White at the airport across the Potomac where they had parked Old Faithful. At the airport, the future president showed a genuine interest. Spencer and White offered him a ride, which he promptly declined. Instead, he peppered them with questions. For their part, Spencer and White pleaded for equal treatment in avi- ation. This was their moment and they played it to the hilt. Beyond the civilian flight training being planned at the time, they asked that the Army Air Corps be opened to blacks. For years to come, Spencer de- lighted in relating the answer. Truman, who had scrutinized the ragged-looking Lincoln-Page, re- sponded, “If you had guts enough to fly that thing I see there, that plane, I got guts enough to fight to get you into the Air Corps.”

A High-gloss Wet-look Covering System ★ It’s BRAND NEW! ★ It’s GLOSSY! ★ It’s FAST
A High-gloss Wet-look Covering System
★ It’s
BRAND NEW!
★ It’s GLOSSY!
★ It’s
FAST & EASY!
★ It WO R K S !
Give us a jingle and
get the full story on
STAR GLOSS.
800-362-3490
www.conaircraft.com
Consolidated Aircraft Coatings
In May 1939, Chauncey E. Spencer and Dale L. White flew from Chicago to Washington,

In May 1939, Chauncey E. Spencer and Dale L. White flew from Chicago to Washington, D.C., in a Lincoln-Page biplane nicknamed Old Faithful. Shown here being congratulated on their return, White is in the center shaking hands with Cornelius R. Coffey, a leader of African American avi- ation in Chicago. Spencer is second from right.

Passing the Torch:

Flights to Freedom

Nine years after chatting with the pilots of Old Faithful, Harry Truman signed Executive Order 9981, which in one fell swoop in- tegrated the armed forces and pro- duced a salutary ripple effect that continues to run through society. Historians have pointed out that Truman’s memoirs don’t men- tion the meeting with Spencer and White, nor do any of the exhaus- tive biographies on the president. In truth, there were various fac- tors bearing on Truman’s decision, which was perhaps his most coura- geous in public office. It was made in an election year that started out as an uphill proposition for the in- cumbent. Moreover, opinion polls showed the electorate overwhelm- ingly opposed to integration. According to the historical con- sensus, the main factor that in- fluenced Truman to compel the integration of the armed forces was his revulsion over the violence that had been directed at some black veterans. As a veteran himself, Tru- man had a visceral distaste for the abusive way these former service members were treated. Years af- ter his decision, a previously un- known letter, written to a friend in the heat of the integration contro- versy, was discovered. In the letter, Truman referred to examples where black veterans had been affected by

race-related malevolence and stated

that he would rather lose the elec- tion than not initiate the measure

to end segregation in the military. Of course, the undeniable air

combat success during World War

II of the Tuskegee Airmen, the Ar-

my’s first black pilots, must have been a contributing determinant. Additionally civil rights groups kept the pressure on. In the mix of factors impacting the process, it’s hard to imagine that the discus- sion Truman had with Spencer and White, despite its historical obscu- rity, didn’t figure to some degree in

his paradigm-changing decision. At the very least, the impassioned plea of the pilots of Old Faithful was a wave in the mounting riptide that eventually tipped the balance. Spencer and White were integral to the succession of dreamers who passed the torch from one to the next until the sky’s artificial barriers were removed. Each flight that nav- igated on the course to freedom, no matter how humble or faded in memory by the passage of time, contributed in some measure to the resulting beneficence. Until he died in 2002 at the age of 95, Spencer remained spry and continued to believe that his en- counter with the future president had made the difference. Be that as it may, a few months after he and White finished their epic Chi- cago-to-Washington flight in Old Faithful, they returned to the farm community in Ohio that had ac- corded them such warmth and friendship. For a day they gave the townspeople plane rides. Sharing the province in which their every breath savored freedom in its pur- est form was the ultimate expres- sion of their respect and gratitude for fellow citizens who had hon- ored their dream.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT The author is grateful for the assistance of the Tuskegee Airmen Na- tional Historical Museum in Detroit, Michigan.

Airmen Na- tional Historical Museum in Detroit, Michigan. SOURCES AND FURTHER READING Hardesty, Von; Pisano,

SOURCES AND FURTHER READING Hardesty, Von; Pisano, Dominick. Black Wings: The American Black in Aviation. Washington, D.C.: National Air and Space Museum/Smithsonian Institution, 1983. Hardesty, Von. Black Wings: Courageous Stories of African Americans in Avia- tion and Space History. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution/Harper Collins Publishers, 2008. Hardesty, Von. Great Aviators and Epic Flights. Fairfield, Connecticut: Hugh Lauter Levin Associates, 2002. Lamber tson, Giles. “The other Harlem: at a small airfi eld in 1930s Chicago, blacks found the fi rst schools that would teach them to fl y.” Air & Space/Smith- sonian, February/March 2010. Laris, Michael. “Fr eedom flight: Chauncey Spencer and Dale White risked life

and limb to fly a rickety, rented biplane from Chicago to Washington. But their real destination was the futur e.” The Washington Post, February 16, 2003. Powell, William J. Black Aviator: The Story of William J. Powell (reissue of

Black Wings. 1934). W ashington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Pr

Rich, Doris L. Queen Bess: Daredevil Aviator. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Pr ess, 1993. Spencer, Chauncey E. Who Is Chauncey Spencer? Detroit, Michigan: Br oad- side Pr ess, 1975.

ess, 1994.

Cub owners who wish to participate in the mass arrival can register at www.Cubs2Oshkosh.org This

Cub owners who wish to participate in the mass arrival can register at www.Cubs2Oshkosh.org

This year’s forecast: yellow skies and black lightning The Oshkosh sky will become a sea
This year’s forecast:
yellow skies and
black lightning
The Oshkosh sky will become a sea of
yellow this year as hundreds of Piper Cubs
migrate to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2012.
It’s all part of the week-long celebration of
the iconic aircraft’s 75th anniversary.
The pioneering light aircraft will be
honored throughout the week with special
features and attractions, including two
unforgettable air show acts.
You don’t want to miss it.
including two unforgettable air show acts. You don’t want to miss it. July 23-29 | AirVenture.org/tickets

July 23-29 | AirVenture.org/tickets

Light Plane Heritage

published in EAA Experimenter February 1993

TWELVE THOUSAND MILES IN AN AVRO AVIAN

Part 2

T he weather was now cold but clear, and it was a simple matter to follow the coastline south. The

volcanoes Vesuvius and Stromboli provided unmistakable landmarks. Along the eastern shoreline of Sic- ily he flew and then headed out over the Mediterranean toward the island of Malta. This was a 60-mile overwater flight. Presumably by the time he began to lose sight of Sicily astern, altitude made it possible for him to sight Malta ahead. People at the R.A.F. field there gave him a grand welcome and much help. It rained all night, and in the morning the field was soggy. The Avian had old-style slim, high- pressure tires that cut into the soft ground and resulted in an apprehen- sively long takeoff run. Ahead of Hinkler lay a 400-mile flight over open water to Benghazi in Libya. At least he’d be heading for a broad coastline that he could, if need be, follow one way or the other to find that destination. Six hours later he touched down on North Af- rican soil, refueled, and headed east along the coastline for Tobruk. The approach of darkness obliged him to set down in the desert about 40

BY BOB WHITTIER

EAA 1235

miles short of that city. He inflated the rubber boat, overturned it, and found that it made a reasonably comfortable bed. When morning came, local peo- ple pulled many bushes from the sand to clear a suitable takeoff path. And then at Tobruk, he learned that the Egyptian government now re- quired 15 days’ notice before over- flying or landing in that country. So from Tobruk he flew out over the Mediterranean far enough to give Egypt a wide berth. Eight hours later he decided to set down in the des- ert in a part of Palestine then un- der British rule and possibly what is now called the Gaza Strip. Again locals helped him. He got airborne and followed the coast-

line north to land at the R.A.F. field at Ramleh, a dozen miles southeast of Tel Aviv, where he ran into more problems with officialdom. There was

a diphtheria scare in the region, and Hinkler had no health papers with

him. This required a trip into town to get medical clearance. Then bureau- crats insisted that he must fill out a sheaf of customs papers. This wasted

a whole day. The following morning he took off and headed a bit southeast toward

Basra, 1,000 miles away over the vast Syrian Desert. He sailed over the Dead Sea and then began to climb to clear a 5,000-foot-high mountain range. The air was very hot, the engine was noisy, and sitting in one position for hours on end led to cramps. Then out over the lonely desert. Whatever cross- winds might do to his navigation, he knew that sooner or later his heading would lead him to the broad valley of the Euphrates River, which he could follow downstream to Basra. His spir-

its leaped when at last he caught sight of green foliage far ahead. At Basra he was informed that he was five days ahead of the Smiths’ 1919 time. Thus encouraged, he went over the Cirrus engine carefully be- fore going to bed. He did these checks just as often as he could, and they no doubt played a large part in the suc- cess of his flight. He took off at dawn for Jask on the shore of the Persian Gulf. That was

a tiny, bleak settlement maintained

by the India-to-Europe telegraph company. Because it had a primitive landing field a few miles out of town, and had telegraph facilities and a few

British telegraph people in residence,

it was a valuable stopping place for

pioneer fliers traveling the England-

AUSTRALIAN NEWS AND INFORMA TION BUREAU
AUSTRALIAN NEWS AND INFORMA TION BUREAU

In addition to being an experienced pilot, Hinkler was a superb mechanic. Car ful inspection and ser vicing of the engine befor e each leg of his long jour ney contributed much to its success.

e-

India-Australia route. The day was very hot and hazy, the flying monotonous, and the en- gine noise incessant. The Cirrus had a short exhaust stack that ended sev- eral feet ahead of the cockpit, and its exposed valve rocker arms emit- ted a steady clatter to add to the mis- ery. Hinkler fought off hallucinations. Jask looked like paradise when the weary flier finally landed.

While refueling the next morn- ing, Hinkler was distressed to notice that the large fuel tank had started to leak. He counted the drops to cal- culate the rate of fuel loss, and it ap- peared that he could with luck reach the next stop, Karachi, on the west coast of India. So he took off, and as hour after hour passed it began to appear that he’d reach his destination. After a

Eight hours later he decided to set down in the desert in a part of Palestine then under British rule and possibly what is now called the Gaza Strip.

nerve-wracking seven hours aloft, he landed with a sigh of relief at the R.A.F. field in Karachi. This meant that he was now halfway to Austra- lia. For the rest of the day and on past midnight he and R.A.F. mechanics worked to find and fix the fuel leak. Someone passed along to Hinkler the welcome news that he had set a new lightplane record from England to India. He was also strongly advised

Pilots of the 1920s did incr edible things with slow biplanes intended for training and
Pilots of the 1920s did incr edible things with slow biplanes intended
for training and having no avionics. On this map of Hinkler’s r
oute by EAAer
R.E. LaFollette, the distance fr om Por t Dar win to Bundaber g is 1,600 miles
over jungle and deser t. Based on par ts from the war surplus RAF V-8 engine,
the Cir rus that power ed Hinkler’s A vian had an over-str ength and ther efore
very durable crankshaft, which gave r eliability on long fl ights. Incorporating les-
sons learned from biplanes, the 1929 de Havilland Puss Moth monoplane was
powered by an impr oved 100-hp Cir rus. This inver ted engine gr eatly improved
forward visibility for navigation by landmarks. Cabin shielded pilots fr
om buf fet-
ing slipstr eam, cold, rain and tr opical sun, and did away with vital maps being
es were bet-

blown overboard. Clean monoplane design boosted speed. Fat tir ter for poor airfi elds.

that his thin pilot’s helmet would cer- tainly not protect him from the blaz- ing Indian sun, and he’d likely suffer sunstroke. So he obtained a topee, the Indian word for a pith helmet. By now, newspapers had begun to notice what was going on and got excited. Some of them came up with such unfortunate phrases as “Hus- tling Hinkler” and “Hinkle, Hinkle, Little Star!” a sad play on his name and shortness. Things like that made him cringe. He crossed the northern part of In- dia with a halfway stop at Cawnpore. While the topee warded off sunstroke, it left his ears completely unprotected from engine noise and he was totally deaf upon reaching that city. But in- side his head he could still hear the engine’s clatter. Departing Cawnpore at sunrise, he flew over a mixture of jungle and green cropland, picked up the Gan- ges River, and followed it to Calcutta. There he worked on the engine until

after midnight by the light of a flash- light, which attracted very unwel- come insects. In the morning he took off for Rangoon in Burma. The course he plotted took him 150 miles diagonally across the Bay of Bengal to pick up the Burmese coast near Akyab. Haze and smoke from forest fires caused very poor visibility. Going by compass, he flew inland, crossed a mountain range, coped with various kinds of clouds, and landed on the racetrack at Rangoon. The next day he flew 600 miles down the west coast of the Malay Peninsula to a very small town called Victoria Point. The “airport” there was a small clearing in the jungle. He overnighted in a rubber planter’s bun- galow and pressed on for Singapore. A terrific thunderstorm obliged him to make a 50-mile detour, and the ground at the Singapore race- course was so soft the Avian almost nosed over as it landed. It was still raining the next morning, and af-

ter refueling the Avian’s tires sank so deep into the turf that Hinkler had to ask bystanders to push on the plane to start it rolling. Again he followed the coastline and islands, using the large one of Banka as a checkpoint. Another go- rilla of a thunderstorm forced a two- hour detour, and Hinkler was happy indeed to glide into the Dutch Fly- ing School field about 50 miles east of Bandung, in what was then Java but is now Indonesia. Pressing along the length of this island country the next day, he climbed to 10,000 feet to find cool air and incidentally viewed with awe a vast panorama of tropic and ocean scenery. He landed at a small town called Bima on the island of Sumbawa. There he spent a sleep- less, mosquito-plagued night. The morning of February 22 was a critical one, for if all went well he’d end that day’s flight at Dar- win in northern Australia. Ahead

AUSTRALIAN NEWS AND INFORMA TION BUREAU
AUSTRALIAN NEWS AND INFORMA TION BUREAU

Following his r emarkable 1928 fl ight, Ber t Hinkler’s A vro Avian was put on dis-

play in the Queensland Museum in Brisbane. It can still be seen ther

e.

of him lay a 900-mile hop over the Timor Sea. The islands of Sumba and Timor provided welcome check- points. Then for five very tense and lonely hours there was nothing but empty ocean below. Hinkler’s spirits leaped like a kangaroo when at last he made out Bathurst Island on Aus- tralia’s northern coast. Around midday a large crown be- gan to gather at Darwin’s airfield. They waited and waited. Around 5 p.m. many began to drift away in dis- appointment. Then, shortly before 6, a man with a telescope shouted, “There he is!” When the Avian’s tailskid kicked up a plume of Australian dust, Hin- kler knew that at last he had made his 10-year dream come true. He had cut the Smiths’ time in half. He was hailed mightily by the people of Dar- win. It did not take him long to re- alize that he was to Australia what Lindbergh was to the United States. Then he flew 1,600 miles over jungle and desert to at long last ar- rive at good old Bundaberg. There followed a tour of the country, with the modest Hinkler squirming through many a ceremony and re- ception where dignitaries tried to outdo one another with flowery prose. He received so many business proposals that it boggled his mind. But in the end he decided to re- turn to England, where he hoped to realize another dream. The faithful

Avian became a prized display at the Queensland Museum in Brisbane. (The Avian is on display in the same gallery as the Sopwith Baby.) Hinkler was struck by the many very poor airfields he landed on in the course of his long flights, and at the same time by the vast number of

bodies of water he had looked down upon. What civil aviation needed, he reasoned, was a good little amphibian. Making good use of his many con- tacts in the British aero industry, he created what he named the Ibis am- phibian, a light, neat-looking two- seater powered by a pair of Salmson 40-hp radial engines made in France. They were mounted in tractor-pusher fashion in a nacelle above the wing’s center section. It was a good, practical aircraft, but by 1930 the Great Depression that followed the Wall Street stock mar- ket crash of 1929 had all but killed off the manufacture of small planes. Hinkler went to the United States and Canada in 1931 hoping to find back- ers, on the theory that the vastness of the North American continent might provide a market. But business was going from bad to worse. In Canada Hinkler bought a three- seat, 115-hp version of the de Havil- land Puss Moth cabin monoplane and set up a charter service catering

1903: Samuel Pierpont Langley’s “Aerodrome” attempts to take off from a floating platform. Langley may
1903: Samuel Pierpont Langley’s “Aerodrome”
attempts to take off from a floating platform.
Langley may have been the
father of carrier aviation, but
even Poly-Fiber fabric couldn’t
have made this work. Good
ideas tend to stick around,
though. Hey! We named our
first carrier after him.
last and last. The instruction
manual is very clear and fun
to read. It’s easier than falling
off a
well, you know.
polyfiber.com
information@polyfiber.com
800-362-3490
Poly-Fiber has stuck around,
too, about forty years worth.
With Poly-Fiber you’ll get a
beautiful covering job that’ll

Aviation people greeted him as a celebrity, but the business community in 1932 had about as much enthusiasm for light aircraft ventures as for a scheme to build bridges out of balsa wood.

ventures as for a scheme to build bridges out of balsa wood. Upon his ar rival

Upon his ar rival in England after the 1932 fl ight from Brazil, Hinkler was given a r ousing welcome by avia- tion people, but the public paid little attention due to being preoccupied with a ver y depressed economy .

to businessmen. This, too, was a dis- appointment. Some people began to say Hinkler was never offered a job worthy of his ability. But the Depres- sion was hard on many, many other people, too. In October of 1931 he gave up on North America and undertook what some felt was a last, rash effort. He flew the Puss Moth from New York to Jamaica in the Caribbean and pressed on to Natal on the Brazilian coast. There, telling people little of his plans, he sent a cryptic telegraph message to Nancy in London. It read, “Here’s hoping!” Then he took off. Twenty-two hours later Nancy received an- other telegram. It read, “Landed at Bathurst, Gambia. O.K. Bert.” He flew up the coast of Africa, crossed Spain and France, and landed at Hanworth Airpark in Middlesex. Aviation people greeted him as a ce- lebrity, but the business community in 1932 had about as much enthu-

siasm for light aircraft ventures as for a scheme to build bridges out of balsa wood. About all the very frus- trated Hinkler could think of was to try to get the useful Ibis into pro- duction in his vast homeland of Australia. Perhaps he was driven by desperation, as were so many oth- ers in those grim Depression years. Delayed by bad weather, he did not get off from Feltham aerodrome un- til 3 in the afternoon of February 7, 1933. He crossed France and headed down the Italian peninsula. After surmounting the Alps he must have been chilled numb. A high wind was blowing, there were clouds and snow, and darkness had fallen. Not knowing where he was, Hinkler crashed into an Appenine mountain- side. Snow covered the wrecked plane and dead pilot, and it was not until late April that local mountain men came upon the scene. Sympathetic Italians gave Hinkler a military funeral and buried him in

a Florence cemetery. There was talk of reinterring him in Australia, but nothing came of it. A waste of talent? Undoubt- edly. Yet, other gallant airmen met their ends while striving mightily for achievement in the field they so loved. Other fliers in small planes made remarkable long-distance flights in the 1920s and into the 1930s. Call them stunts if you wish; the fact is they taught many lessons and highlighted the great need for better airfields, radios, instruments, and planes. The slow biplanes having shown what could be done, designers went to work on faster monoplanes. To- day, small planes make long flights as a matter of course. We owe pio- neers like Hinkler much respect and gratitude. What they did led to to- day’s growing use of aircraft to bring together people from all over the world in a spirit of friendship and mutual understanding.

to bring together people from all over the world in a spirit of friendship and mutual

2 0 1 2

Drive one.
Drive
one.

F o r d

E x p l o r e r

America’s Love Affair With the Ford Explorer

The Ford Explorer is loaded with new innovations, including the new lane keeping technology and is powered by EcoBoost ® which delivers a class-leading EPA rating of 28 mpg on the highway. Voted the 2011 North American truck of the year for its on-road dynamics, safety, technology, design and craftsmanship, the three-row, seven- passenger SUV is once again at the head of the class.

The Privilege of Partnership

EAA members are eligible for special pricing on Ford Motor Company vehicles through Ford’s Partner Recognition Program. To learn more on this exclusive opportunity for EAA members to save on a new Ford vehicle, please visit www.eaa.org/ford.

VEHICLE PURCHASE PLAN
VEHICLE
PURCHASE
PLAN
THE Vintage Mechanic BY ROBERT G. LOCK Monocoque Structures Monocoque (pronounced mon-o-cock) is a French
THE Vintage Mechanic
THE Vintage
Mechanic

BY ROBERT G. LOCK

Monocoque Structures

Monocoque (pronounced mon-o-cock) is a French word meaning “single shell.” The first wood shell monocoque structure was developed by the Swiss designer Ruchonnet and applied to a Deperdussin monoplane raced by Louis Béchereau in 1912. In the monocoque design, the skin carries all flight loads, re- sulting in a more streamlined airplane. Just look at this beautiful ship shown in Illustration 1.

In 1918 in the United States, a young designer named John Northrop developed a new method to construct a monocoque fuselage for the Loughead S-1 biplane. Northrop and Anthony “Tony” Stadlman, Loughead superintendent of construction, began de- signing and building a “dream plane” for returning WWI pilots. During the months after the war, they fab- ricated a mold from concrete in which two plywood half shells could be fabricated in a relatively short period of time. The Deperdussin technique required that many small strips of ply- wood be glued over a form, a very lengthy process. Rather Northrop used three plies of spruce strips soaked with glue and laid in a semicircular concrete mold. A release paper was laid over the spruce strips, and a rub- ber bag was placed over the wood. Then a lid was bolted over the mold, and the rubber bag inflated to press the plywood against the mold. Twenty-four hours later, after the glue cured, the bag

ILLUSTRATION 2 The 1912 version of the Deper dussin-Bécher eau Model D. Sitting in fr ont are four of its pilots, Guillaume Bus- son, René Vidar t, Jules V edrines, and Maurice Pr evost.

ILLUSTRATION 1
ILLUSTRATION 1

The first plane to break the 124-mph barrier, and the first Schneider Tro- phy winner, was Armand Deperdussin’s mono- plane. It flew as the speed phenomenon of the years before the First World War. The plane was developed early in 1912 by Louis Béchereau, the designer for the Socie’te pour les Appareils Deper- dussin. Béchereau worked from an idea by Swedish engineer Ruchonnet and developed a streamlined monocoque plywood fuselage with a large spinner. To achieve maximum power, two Gnome rotaries were mounted on a common crankshaft. The first note- worthy achievement of this plane was the 1912 Gor- don Bennett Cup, which it won with a speed of 108.1 mph. The plane won the cup again the following year on September 29, 1913, in Reims, France. Maurice Prévost achieved an average of 124.6 mph. During this race the plane beat the world speed record three times, and its maximum speed was 126.7 mph—an amazing feat almost ten years after the Wright Broth- ers first flew a heavier-than-air ship in 1903. Powering the ship were two Gnome seven-cylinder air-cooled rotary motors mounted to a common crankshaft. One wonders how they did that! Illustration 2 is pho- tograph of this beautiful ship.

was deflated and the lid removed to expose a smooth half-shell. Illustrations 3 and 4 depict the molds that produced left and right side shells, which reduced the time needed to produce skins from days to just 20 min- utes, not including cure time. The two half shells were less than a quarter-inch thick. Left, in this Lockheed archives photo, we get a peek inside the small factory building in 1919. In Illustration 3, workmen have just removed a fuselage skin from the mold. The lid can be seen hoisted above the heavy mold. This early process is very similar to modern composite fabrication using a mold; however, today’s molds aren’t made from con- crete. For composite fabrication, composite molds are used.

crete. For composite fabrication, composite molds are used. ILLUSTRATION 3 ILLUSTRATION 5 In 1927, Northrop designed

ILLUSTRATION 3

fabrication, composite molds are used. ILLUSTRATION 3 ILLUSTRATION 5 In 1927, Northrop designed the famous

ILLUSTRATION 5

In 1927, Northrop designed the famous Lockheed Vega based on his experience with the S-1. In Illustration 6 is a shot of Lockheed Vega serial number 1. The design phi- losophy of the fuselage and empennage carried over to the Vega from the S-1. Note the similarity of vertical fin and rudder planform. Northrop, Stadlman, and the Lougheads, Allen and Malcom, devised and patented a process to make molded plywood monocoque fuselage shells (U.S. Patent #1,425,113, August 8, 1922).

fuselage shells (U.S. Patent #1,425,113, August 8, 1922). ILLUSTRATION 6 ILLUSTRATION 4 In Illustration 4, two

ILLUSTRATION 6

(U.S. Patent #1,425,113, August 8, 1922). ILLUSTRATION 6 ILLUSTRATION 4 In Illustration 4, two workmen hold
(U.S. Patent #1,425,113, August 8, 1922). ILLUSTRATION 6 ILLUSTRATION 4 In Illustration 4, two workmen hold

ILLUSTRATION 4

In Illustration 4, two workmen hold the fuselage with one hand to demonstrate its lightweight construction. One-half of the outer shell has been glued in place to form a background to show the bulkheads. There are no stringers or other structural compo- nents in the fuselage. Illustration 5 shows the Loughead S-1 folding wing biplane, constructed in 1919 by designer John Northrop. This molding process would be perfected and used later to produce the famous Lockheed Vega.

The first plane to break the 124-mph barrier, and the first Schneider Trophy winner, was Armand Deperdussin’s monoplane.

ILLUSTRATION 7 ILLUSTRATION 8 Illustration 7 shows the Lockheed factory located in Burbank, California, with

ILLUSTRATION 7

ILLUSTRATION 7 ILLUSTRATION 8 Illustration 7 shows the Lockheed factory located in Burbank, California, with Vega

ILLUSTRATION 8

Illustration 7 shows the Lockheed factory located in Burbank, California, with Vega aircraft under con- struction. Cantilever wing is in foreground with aile- ron clamped to apply pressure to the glue. Fuselage bulkheads can be seen hanging from rafters with three ships under construction. To the right is a spar assem- bly ready for fabrication of another wing panel.

In Illustration 8, bulkheads are assembled on keel, ready to receive plywood skins in this Lockheed as- sembly line photograph. Note there are no stringers in the structure to aid in carrying flight loads. The stress skin carries all the loads. Bulkheads are fabricated from laminated spruce.

ILLUSTRATION 9 To the wealthy guy goes all the toys! Here’s Los An- geles tycoon

ILLUSTRATION 9 To the wealthy guy goes all the toys! Here’s Los An- geles tycoon car dealer Earle C. Anthony, his 1920 Packard model 6-26 Runabout, and his Lockheed Vega. His dealership sold Packard cars to many Hollywood stars of the era. Anthony also owned clear channel AM radio station KFI. The Vega became synonymous with speed and was the first airplane to fly nonstop coast to coast in both directions. Vega aircraft were later equipped with NACA speed cowls, which added dra- matically to their speed.

NACA speed cowls, which added dra- matically to their speed. ILLUSTRATION 10 Illustration 10 shows the

ILLUSTRATION 10

Illustration 10 shows the handsome Lockheed Air Express, essentially a Vega with a parasol wing, the NACA speed ring cowl developed by Fred Weick and his associates at the National Advisory Committee on Aeronautics during the late 1920s. This fast aircraft was constructed exactly like the Vega, but the cockpit was moved aft and was open rather than inside the cabin. On February 4 and 5, 1929, noted barnstormer pilot Frank Hawks flew the Lockheed Air Express shown above, equipped with a NACA low-drag engine cowl- ing, from Los Angeles to New York nonstop. He estab- lished a new cross-country record. Hawks covered the trip in 18 hours and 13 minutes in this ship whose top speed had been increased from 157 to 177 mph. Gerry Vultee of Lockheed sent the NACA a telegram stating:

“Cooling carefully checked and O.K. Record impos- sible without new cowling. All credit due NACA for painstaking and accurate research.” Following the Lockheed Vega series there were other monocoque fuselages designed and produced over the years. Eventually aluminum was used for the structure, followed most recently by composites.

for the structure, followed most recently by composites. CONTACT US TODAY! TOLL FREE: TEL: FAX: SALES:
CONTACT US TODAY! TOLL FREE: TEL: FAX: SALES: WEB: Scan this QR code with your
CONTACT US TODAY!
TOLL FREE: TEL: FAX:
SALES: WEB:
Scan this QR code with your smartphone
or tablet device to view our complete line
your smartphone or tablet device to view our complete line A ERO C LASSIC “C OLLECTOR

AERO CLASSIC

“COLLECTOR SERIES

Vintage Tires

New USA Production

Show off your pride and joy with a fresh set of Vintage Rubber. These newly minted tires are FAA-TSO’d and speed rated to 120 MPH. Some things are better left the way they were, and in the 40’s and 50’s, these tires were perfectly in tune to the exciting times in aviation. Not only do these tires set your vintage plane apart from the rest, but also look exceptional on all General Aviation aircraft. Deep 8/32nd tread depth offers above average tread life and UV treated rubber resists aging. First impressions last a lifetime, so put these jewels on and bring back the good times …

New General Aviation Sizes Available:

the good times … New General Aviation Sizes Available: 500 x 5, 600 x 6, 700

500 x 5, 600 x 6, 700 x 8

Desser has the largest stock and selection of Vintage and Warbird tires in the world. Contact us with your requirements.

tires in the world. Contact us with your requirements. In Support Of Aviation Since 1920…. Telephone:

In Support Of Aviation Since 1920….

Telephone: 800-247-8473 or 323-721-4900 FAX: 323-721-7888

6900

3400

Acco St., Montebello, CA 90640

Chelsea Ave, Memphis, TN 38106

www.desser.com

THE Vintage Instructor BY Steve Krog, CFI Some things you learn after getting your certificate
THE Vintage Instructor
THE Vintage
Instructor

BY Steve Krog, CFI

Some things you learn after getting your certificate

Q uick, what will be the takeoff distance of

your airplane at gross on a 90ºF day? How

much crosswind can your airplane handle?

Detailed performance charts were never

provided for many of the under 100- to

150-hp vintage airplanes we fly today. Consequently, determining takeoff or landing distances, crosswind components, and other performance figures for these airplanes becomes a guessing game or a “gut feel,” de- pending upon how much time one has accumulated in the plane. Some years ago I participated in a 100th anniversary family reunion. The gathering was held in early August on a southwestern Minnesota farm. My cousin, who owned the farm, asked that I fly my J-3 and offer rides. Everyone could then take photos of the horse-drawn wagons, bundle pitching, and threshing that was tak- ing place. I agreed, and we cut a short runway in the hayfield adjoining the farm. Not having ever done anything like this previously, I truly didn’t know what I didn’t know. However, I did pace off the runway while checking for holes and other obstructions that might hamper a smooth take- off or landing. There were trees at the east end and low-hanging power lines at the west end of the freshly carved 1,400-foot runway. The next morning I arrived in the 65-hp J-3 Cub. By midmorning the temperature hovered around 85ºF and the humidity was high. On a normal day in this part of the country the wind is usually westerly at about 15 to 20 mph, but not today; it was nearly calm. I thought to myself that the trusty Cub was surely going to get a tough workout hauling passengers under these condi- tions. To my benefit, though, I could take off to the west and land to the east, saving a lot of taxi time. Before hopping the first ride, I paced the runway and placed a visible marker at the halfway point, thinking that if I wasn’t airborne by the marker, I had adequate runway to shut down and stop. When the threshing machine fired up, I began hop- ping rides. The first dozen or so were uneventful. After every exchange of passengers, I noticed the ride line

getting longer, and some of the awaiting passengers were rather stout. I pointed one individual out and mentioned to my wife, Sharon, that the stout cousin should be placed in line so that he received his ride when the fuel tank was near empty. Unfortunately, he was nowhere to be found at that point, so I gave an- other ride and shut down to add fuel. While adding fuel and getting a drink of water, the stout fellow reappeared and hopped into the front seat. Realizing what had happened, I suggested he

might want to wait, but it was his turn and he was adamant about getting his ride. I didn’t want to cause

a problem, so I reluctantly started up and taxied into

position for a takeoff, all the while thinking that if I’m

not airborne at my marker, I’ll shut it down. The poor Cub began rolling, and sure enough, we

were off the ground just at midpoint. After climbing to about 15 feet, I couldn’t coax another inch of alti- tude out of the laboring J-3. With the power lines ap- proaching and no room to go under them, I decided a “gentle” skidding turn to the right was in order, as it was open unobstructed flatland for several miles. After completing the turn and continuing in a northern di- rection at 15 feet, my cousin asked why he was getting

a ride different from the others. With palms sweating

and knees shaking, I didn’t want to tell him what re- ally just happened. I responded, “I thought you might want to try something different.” Several more miles later, we had reached 200 feet and turned back for his photo pass followed by the landing. I shut down the engine and climbed out, explain- ing to Sharon that I needed a break for a few minutes. After regaining my composure, the rides continued un- eventfully for the remainder of the day. I’ve thought about that incident many times since then and vowed that I would never let myself get

talked into a similar situation ever again. Additionally,

I also vowed that I would get to know the Cub perfor-

mance much better. The result is an accumulation of several rules of thumb. These rules will apply to most all of the low-horsepower vintage airplanes we fly. A 10 percent increase in aircraft takeoff weight will

result in a 20 percent increase in takeoff distance. Density altitude increases the takeoff distance by about 120 feet for each 10ºC above the standard tem- perature (15ºC [59ºF]). For each knot above V REF (recommended approach speed), the touchdown point will be 100 feet farther down the runway. On another occasion I learned another valuable les- son. An old aviator friend from out of town had stopped by the airport. During our short visit he mentioned that he hadn’t flown a Cub in more than 30 years and would

like to make a short flight. I agreed, and he hopped in the front seat. I didn’t have an intercom in the Cub, so

I mentioned that I would make the takeoff and then

shake the stick, indicating that it was his airplane. I

would hold my hands up for him to see, so that he

could visually confirm that I was not on the controls. After takeoff I shook the stick followed by hold- ing up my hands. He took control and began flying around the area. It was early afternoon, so we were experiencing the normal thermal and bump activity.

I anticipated that he would fly for a few minutes and

then return the controls to me by shaking the stick and holding his hands up. Minutes passed, and he contin-

ued to fly

My old aviator friend made a few turns and then sup- posedly shook the stick. However, I just assumed that it was the turbulence moving the stick and continued to let him fly. He never did hold his hands in the air. Fif- teen minutes later we were still flying, but it was mostly straight and level with a slow descent. When we got down to about 100 feet, I decided to take the stick, leveled the airplane, and returned to the airport. After landing, I asked him if he knew the owner of the farm he was intending to buzz. With a look of complete surprise he stated that he wasn’t flying! He thought he had given the controls back to me and fig- ured I was lining up with the farm for a low pass. Thankfully, nothing serious happened, but it made

a lasting impression on me. I decided I would never again give a ride to anyone without clearly explaining and then demonstrating how to transfer the controls from one to another! Another lesson learned. Shortly after my experience, I learned that an ac- quaintance had destroyed his newly restored Stearman under similar circumstances. He had taken a friend for

a pleasure flight, and neither made an effort to discuss

the exchange of controls before the flight. Each thought the other was flying, and the aircraft was flown into the ground. Thankfully the only damage to the two fellows involved was a broken ankle and a lot of bruises, but a beautiful airplane was destroyed. Flying airplanes is a constant learning experience. A local pilot taught me another good lesson one summer Sunday afternoon. He hadn’t flown in a while and de- cided it was time to get current, as his family was com- ing for a visit and he wanted to give some rides. As he

or so I thought.

taxied past my hangar, he waved and asked if I’d ride along while he did a few landings. I had a little time on my hands, so I decided to join him. What could it hurt? The wind was fairly strong from the north, but rather than taxiing to favored Runway 36, he continued on to Runway 29. I thought that a bit odd, but maybe he wanted to work on his crosswinds. As he aligned himself with the runway centerline, I sat back to enjoy the ride. After applying full power we instantly found ourselves in

a 90-degree turn to the right. I sat up and hit the left rud- der, realigning with the centerline. A half-second later we entered a 90-degree turn to the left and headed for the drainage ditch. I hit the right rudder hard, again align- ing with the centerline. Then he hit the right rudder. The tires were squealing, the tail was now in the air, and we were headed for the swamp on the right side of the run-

way. I instantly pulled the throttle to idle, switched the mags off, and steered the airplane off the runway into the tall grass. I felt the airplane would go over on its nose, so

forced it into a ground loop. When we finally came to a stop my friend asked, “What just happened?” After giving the incident some thought, I came to a conclusion: I should have spoken up when we didn’t use the best runway. He was so excited about flying again that he was oblivious to the wind. I learned an- other valuable lesson! When two pilots are at the con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying pilot!

I

con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying
con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying
con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying

con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying

con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying
con- trols, always confirm who is pilot in command and what is expected of the accompanying
by H.G. FRAUTSCHY MYSTERY PLANE
by H.G. FRAUTSCHY
MYSTERY PLANE

This month’s Mystery Plane came to our attention through Wes Smith of Springfield, Illinois.

our attention through Wes Smith of Springfield, Illinois. Send your answer to EAA, Vintage Airplane ,

Send your answer to EAA, Vintage Airplane, P.O. Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. Your answer needs to be in no later than March 10 for inclusion in the May 2012 issue of Vintage Airplane. You can also send your response via e-mail. Send your answer to mysteryplane@eaa.org. Be sure to include your name plus your city and state in the body of your note and put “(Month) Mystery Plane” in the subject line.

NOVEMBER’S MYSTERY ANSWER

T he November Mystery Plane came to us from the Norman Collection of the

EAA Library. Here’s our first letter:

The November 2011 Mystery Plane is a Stout amphibian built in 1927 by William B. Stout, the designer of the Ford Tri-Motor. This twin-engine tandem-wing amphibian was powered by a pair of 32-hp Bristol Cherub en- gines. Robert F. Pauley’s book, Michigan Aircraft Manufacturers, says the test pilot, Leonard Flo,

could not coax the plane into the air, and it was damaged in a high-speed taxiing accident. The plane was scrapped. Robert Ross Pigeon, Michigan

And this from Lynn Towns of Holt, Michigan:

The November Mystery Plane is the Stout Dragonfly. After Ford took over the design and produc- tion of the Tri-Motor, William B.

is the Stout Dragonfly. After Ford took over the design and produc- tion of the Tri-Motor,
is the Stout Dragonfly. After Ford took over the design and produc- tion of the Tri-Motor,
Lynn Towns shared this photo showing off the interesting layout of the Ford-Stout Dragonfly. Stout

Lynn Towns shared this photo showing off the interesting layout of the Ford-Stout Dragonfly.

Stout was given free rein to de- sign and build his own airplanes using the Ford facilities. His sec- ond attempt at a new design was the 1927 Dragonfly. This two- place open-cockpit monoplane was an amphibian with two tan- dem wings. Today, we would call it a canard design, but I don’t know whether that term existed at that time. It was powered by two pylon-mounted 32-hp Bris- tol Cherub engines. In keep- ing with his recent designs, the Dragonfly used all-metal corru- gated construction. The aircraft never flew. Leon- ard Flo was the test pilot, but he wasn’t able to get the Dragonfly airborne. The plane was dam- aged in a high-speed taxi acci- dent and scrapped. Correct answers were also re- ceived from Jack Erickson, State College, Pennsylvania, and from Thomas Lymburn, Princeton, Minnesota, who noted that the Bristol Cherub engines were built from 1923 and used for a series of ‘ultra-light’ aircraft in the United Kingdom. They de- veloped between 25 and 36 hp and weighed a bit over 90 pounds. Some were imported into the United States and were used to power the Heath Baby Bullet and the Powell Racer.”

We enjoy your suggestions for Mys- tery Plane—in fact, more than half of our subjects are sent to us by mem- bers, often via e-mail. Please remem- ber that if you want to scan the photo for use in Mystery Plane, it must be at a resolution of 300 dpi or greater. You may send a lower-resolution version to us for our review, but the final ver- sion has to be at that level of detail or it will not print properly. Also, please let us know where the photo came from; we don’t want to willfully vio- late someone’s copyright.

THE “STROMBERG SPECIALIST” R.E. “Bob” Kachergius A&P/IA

Does your Stromberg NA-S3 carburetor Drip - Leak - Perform poorly ? ? ?

Have it Overhauled & Restored to “Grand Cham- pion” standards and quality by us…

WE: Dismantle & Inspect – Clean & Glass Bead Blast – Aluma-Etch & Alodine – Custom Lap mating surfaces – Re- assemble using all new AN hardware, gaskets, Stainless steel or Delrin needle & seat – proper metering jets & venturis… Float level is set “wet” to 13/32” – Stromberg service letter procedure installed to raise float bowl vent position eliminating fuel drip – prepare a log book entry sheet…

All for $850.00 + $25.00 freight & handling

UNI-TECH AIR MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS, INC.

Call:

708-267-7111

Mail:

13221 WINDWARD TRAIL

ORLAND PARK, IL. 60462 E-Mail: uni-tech@earthlink.net

Mail: 13221 WINDWARD TRAIL ORLAND PARK, IL. 60462 E-Mail: uni-tech@earthlink.net VINTAGE AIRPLANE 33
Mail: 13221 WINDWARD TRAIL ORLAND PARK, IL. 60462 E-Mail: uni-tech@earthlink.net VINTAGE AIRPLANE 33

Antiques Over the Chesapeake

BY ROGER THIEL

T hese two themes—well known throughout the antique airplane interest—come together in a profound regional way each spring at Maryland’s Horn Point fly-in.

In the 1930s the DuPont family, prominent then as now in area aviation, built a huge private grass field on

You come for the airplanes; you stay for the people; The journey can be as importantasthedestination.

Piper J-3 Flitfire was paid for by U.S. citizens to aid England in 1941.
Piper J-3 Flitfire was paid for by U.S. citizens to aid
England in 1941.
was paid for by U.S. citizens to aid England in 1941. Maryland’s eastern shore near Cambridge.
was paid for by U.S. citizens to aid England in 1941. Maryland’s eastern shore near Cambridge.

Maryland’s eastern shore near Cambridge. Now part of the University of Maryland, the Horn Point Aerodrome has, for decades, annually received up to 120 antique, classic, and display aircraft for a major mid-Atlantic May fly-in. Whizzing everywhere in golf carts, fly-in volunteers/ hosts of the Potomac Antique Aero Squadron (PAAS) place display aircraft in a main central category. Mod- erns are politely parked on a side runway, and special aircraft, often pre-World War II, have the highlighted show area at the front. The huge grass runways are unique and have bases of hundreds of tons of gravel. It rained for five days prior to the event this year, and the runways were dry for the fly-in. You come for the airplanes: This year’s attending air- craft included a rare Flitfire Cub, Luscombe T8F Observer, Woody Pusher homebuilt, two Cessna 195s, and two

2011 Horn Point Award Winners

ANTIQUE GRAND CHAMPION

Edward R. Moor e, 2023 Cor nell Place, Por t Orange, FL 32128

N68431, 1943 Howard DGA- 15P

ANTIQUE SWEEPSTAKES

Paul D. Br unks, 4950 Bonniewood Drive, Shady side, MD 20764

N33821, 1941 Aeronca Chief 650A

CLASSIC GRAND CHAMPION

Mike Roe, P.O. Box 292, Ophelia, V A 22530

N8502, 1947 Stinson 108-1

CLASSIC SWEEPSTAKES

Rusty Richar ds, 3641 High View W ay, Columbus, IN 47203

N2185C, 1954 Cessna 195

CONTEMPORARY GRAND CHAMPION

Mike Meyers, 255 E. Chesapeake Beech Rd., Owings, MD 20736

N7258A, 1956 Cessna 172

CONTEMPORARY SWEEPSTAKES

No Award Made

MILITARY GRAND CHAMPION

Brian McCay, 1015 Earlysville For est Dr., Earlysville, V A 22936

N4408N, 1942 Boeing Stearman B75N1

MILTARY SWEEPSTAKES &

EXCEPTIONAL NAVY - 100th ANNIV. AWARD Nick Mirales, 605 Patuxent Beach Dr ., Prince Fr ederick, MD 20670

N75NM, 1944 Boeing Stearman E-75 - N2S-5

BEST CUSTOMIZED

Richard Miller, 237 Leader ton Dr., Dallastown, P A 17313

N2315P, 1955 Piper PA-22-20

BEST CUSTOM BUILT

Richard Sears, 8779 Unionville Rd., Easton, MD 21601

N812RS, RV-8

PAAS PRESIDENT’S CHOICE

Davidson Smith, 104 W ynfield Lane, New Hope, P A 18938

N25VV, 1949 Luscombe T8F Observer

A.A.A. HEADQUARTERS AWARD

Mike Roe, P.O. Box 292, Ophelia, V A 22530

N8502, 1947 Stinson 108-1

Howard DGA-15Ps, arriving from different parts of the country and using Horn Point as their rendezvous. A good showing of Stearmans, Cubs, Aeroncas, and many other marquees highlighted the unique waterside location. But you stay for the people: Horn Point’s rural loca- tion is both rare and welcome for the East coast, but does not feature a permanent facility. The obvious pas- time is visiting, and a huge annual social ritual erupts, common to all fly-ins but especially focused here. The laid-back nature of the surroundings is infectious, an antidote to the way-too-cerebral East. Food is provided by civic groups and everything else is brought in by PAAS members, most of whom assume long-established fly-in duties. PAAS members also of- fer rides to lodging in town, and some guests take advantage of car trips to the area’s bedrock-genuine seafood restaurants. Attendees return annually from as far away as the Midwest, New England, Long Island, and Florida. The Journey: Upon arrival, participants have just flown over the region’s stunning aerial landscape. The relentlessly flat Del-Mar-Va peninsula stretches out in endless green curves alongside the Chesapeake Bay, called “the crown jewel of the world’s estuaries.” From vintage wings, the fliers have just seen a cu- rious and breathtaking mix of affluent waterfront es- tates alongside canning factories, truck farms, poultry houses, huge wildlife and waterfowl preserves, and oyster shell roads still in use. Beautiful sailboats ply sun-sparkled waters alongside industrial fishing fleets. Tall grass marshes border salt water rivers, creeks, and

Tall grass marshes border salt water rivers, creeks, and Luscombe T8F: Customized Luscombe T8F Observer is
Luscombe T8F: Customized Luscombe T8F Observer is one of very few made.
Luscombe T8F: Customized Luscombe T8F Observer
is one of very few made.

coves (de facto crab factories) with postcard-pretty bridges. Think: a regional version of the great Ameri- can Midwest, alongside the stunning tidewater scenery. The social networking on the field streaks by, and props are turned under afternoon sun with regret. As fliers depart, though, they know they are about to re-experience the area’s visual wonder and most, understandably, resolve to return the next year to this same destination. (Pilots have steered, though, to avoid the edge of the Washington-Baltimore air de- fense identification zone (ADIZ)—since 2003, an ex- treme challenge for area antiquers.) Fly-in director Art Kudner, who also owns and oper- ates a residential fly-in community nearby, sums up:

“Historic airplanes on a historic airfield in a part of the country with a heritage of centuries. You know, this is one place where I don’t mind feeling my age—and I’ll bet the airplanes feel the same way.”

my age—and I’ll bet the airplanes feel the same way.” A Woody Pusher homebuilt gives the
A Woody Pusher homebuilt gives the look—and ride—of classic Curtiss Junior!
A Woody Pusher homebuilt gives the look—and
ride—of classic Curtiss Junior!
This Cessna 195 is kept at the private bay- side strip of PAAS stalwarts Stan
This Cessna 195 is kept at the private bay-
side strip of PAAS stalwarts Stan and Sandi
Sweikar.
Owners of two Howard DGA-15s chose Horn Point for a spring rendezvous.
Owners of two Howard DGA-15s chose Horn
Point for a spring rendezvous.
FROM THE EAA ARCHIVES
FROM THE EAA ARCHIVES

Steve Wittman and the Standard J-1:

A barnstormer’s biplane earns its keep

BY H.G. FRAUTSCHY

EAA ARCHIVE
EAA ARCHIVE

We ran a copy of this photo in Vintage Airplane a long time ago, and since then, the advent of the modern digital scanner has allowed us to look even deeper at this terrific photo of a young Steve Wittman (left) and a Standard J-1 he flew in the mid-1920s. The Standard J-1, with its flat sides, looks to be the perfect aerial advertising mount for a pair of banners pasted to the sides letting everyone know that you could purchase an Atwater Kent radio set at the Anderson Garage in Hamilton, Wisconsin. (Hamilton is in far western Wisconsin, near La Crosse.) Steve learned to fly in a Standard J-1; it could very well be this aircraft, but I don’t have absolute proof of that in any of our documentation. A few interesting details emerge from this photo. Starting on the right, this Standard is powered by a Curtiss OX-5 motor, a common version when sold as surplus by the government in 1924 for the handsome sum of $1,500. A dent creases the nose bowl and cowling, chipping the paint as it extends diagonally toward the open engine cowl’s sheet metal. In this winter season, it was hard to keep the engine warm enough to operate well, so a piece of oily cloth is wrapped around the lower third of the radiator. The sweepback of the wings of the Standard is readily apparent in this shot, a distinct difference to observe when comparing the J-1 to the more common Curtiss JN-4 Jenny. It’s also interesting to note there is only one windshield on the biplane, a grungy looking sliver of

something that was once transparent, mounted just forward of the front cockpit. A look at the area just forward of the aft cockpit shows a small circular window, which at first glance seems to be an odd place for such a little porthole. As it happens, they are placed there for an exceptionally practical reason. Since the instrument panel is set well under the sheet metal surrounding the cockpit, the windows serve as portholes, allowing sunlight to shine on the instruments. The advertising banner features some interesting lettering, most of which doesn’t seem to match. We’d be interested to hear from anyone who can help us understand how something like this was produced. It’s obviously hand-lettered on some sort of paper or cloth,

which is pasted to the side of the fuselage, as there are no cords or other obvious fasteners for the banner. It looks as though the top of the forward section of the banner has been damaged by pilots entering and exiting the cockpit, and it is peeling away. The vertical fin, like much of the rest of the airframe, shows plenty of evidence that operating an OX-5 was not a clean job; there’s plenty of dirt and grease on it, and the lower fuselage shows some torn fabric hanging from the bottom, just behind the tailskid. Operating from unimproved fields was standard procedure, so that’s no surprise! And finally we come to the radio set from Atwater Kent, an early manufacturer of high-end radios. The radio appears to be one of the first models manufactured by Kent, a model 35, which featured a single knob for tuning, a new innovation they introduced in 1926. It’s stamped-metal cabinet enhanced AM radio reception, and allowed Atwater Kent to keep the cost down. It was remarkably popular, especially considering it sold for $70. The speaker is one of its model H horn speakers, which would set you back another $21. The company was active until Mr. Kent chose to close the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, factory in 1936, when pressures from the market to produce a cheap radio would mean producing a lesser product, something Kent was unwilling to do. Having earned his pilot’s certificate in a J-1 in 1924, this photo from our archives gives us an early glimpse of one of aviation’s most accomplished builders and pilots, only a decade before his name would be mentioned in the same breath with Roscoe Turner, Rudy Kling, Art Chester, and other famous racing pilots.

in the same breath with Roscoe Turner, Rudy Kling, Art Chester, and other famous racing pilots.
Here’s one last look back to honor the 100th anniversary of Naval Aviation in the
Here’s one last look back to honor the 100th anniversary
of Naval Aviation in the United States. Illustrator and
artist Bob O’Hara sent us this neat pen and ink illustra-
tion of a U.S. Navy Martin PM-1. Bob did it as an homage
to one of the favorites of his childhood, “Don Winslow of
the Navy,” which was, at various times during the 1930s
through the 1950s, a radio program, Universal movie
serial, and comic book series.

What Our Members Are Restoring

Are you nearing completion of a r estoration? Or is it done and you’re busy fl ying and showing it of f? If so, we’d like to hear from you. Send us a 4-by-6-inch print fr om a commercial source (no home printers, please—those prints just don’t scan well) or a 4-by-6-inch, 300-dpi digital photo. A JPG fr om your 2.5-megapixel (or higher) digital camera is fi ne. You can burn photos to a CD, or if you’r e on a high-speed Inter net connection, you can e-mail them along with a text-only or Word document describing your airplane. (If your e-mail program asks if you’d like to make the photos smaller , say no.) For more tips on cr eating photos we can publish, visit VAA’s website at www.VintageAircraft.org. Check the News page for a hyperlink to W ant To Send Us A Photograph?

For more information,you can also e-mail us at vintageaircraft@ eaa.org or call us at 920-426-4825.

Plush Flying Bears Give an adorable flying bear to say your sweetest sentiment.Prop spins, lights
Plush Flying Bears
Give an adorable flying bear
to say your sweetest
sentiment.Prop spins, lights
up with message as a song
is played. Approx 11”
Red 5265753300020
White 5265753300100
$25.95 * ea.
www.shopeaa.com/vaa
Telephone Orders: 800-843-3612
From US and Canada (All Others Call 920-426-5912)
*Shipping and handling NOT included
Major credit cards accepted.
WI residents add 5% sales tax.

MA1 Flight Jacket

$42.95 *

With Vintage logo on front, this jacket is warm and comfortable

during the winter season. The sage green color is attractive and practical for the many activities of a seriously-fun aviator!

Med

5263622300000

Large

5263622400000

XL

5263622500000

2X

5263622600000

Silk Aviator’s Scarf

$29.95 *

Wrap around your neck the comfort of silk with the historic look of aviation. Off-white scarf is screened with the VAA logo.

One size

5266138900000

Aviator Goggles

$19.99*

Beautifully crafted British style goggles protect your eyes when

flying in those vintage open air cockpits. Also handy for many fun winter and summer activities.

Adjustable 5266155000000

Winter Fleece Set for Children

$5.95 *

This hat, scarf, and mitten set is the softest winter wear your child can have to keep warm while enjoying the outdoors. Black color is perfect for wearing with any colored coat. Sized for youths 2 to 5 years of age.

www.shopeaa.com/vaa

Telephone Orders: 800-843-3612

From US and Canada (All Others Call 920-426-5912)

*Shipping and handling NOT included. Major credit cards accepted. WI residents add 5% sales tax.

B-15A Bomber Jacket

$57.99 *

Warm khaki color jacket with a removable faux fur collar. Med 5265697303082 XL 5265697305082 Large 5265697304082 2X 5265697306082

$36.95 *

Flight Cap

Fleece lined with VAA logo.

Sm

Sage

5265341502053

Md

Sage

5265341503053

Lg Sage

5265341504053

Sm

Brown 5265341502084

Md

Brown 5265341503084

Lg Brown

5265341504084

VINTAGE TRADER
VINTAGE
TRADER

Something to buy, sell, or trade?

Classifi ed Word Ads: $5.50 per 10 wor ds, 180 words maximum, with boldface lead-in on first line. Classifi ed Display Ads: One column wide (2.167 inches) by 1, 2, or 3 inches high at $20 per inch. Black and white only , and no frequency discounts. Advertising Closing Dates: 10th of second month prior to desir ed issue date (i.e., Januar y 10 is the closing date for the Mar ch issue). V AA reser ves the right to r eject any adver tising in conflict with its policies. Rates cover one inser tion per issue. Classified ads ar e not accepted via phone. Payment must accompany or der. Word ads may be sent via fax (920-426-4828) or e-mail (classads@eaa.org) using cr edit card payment (all cards accepted). Include name on car d, complete address, type of car d, card number, and expiration date. Make checks payable to EAA. Address advertising correspondence to EAA Publications Classified Ad Manager , P.O. Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086.

BOOKS

Iowa Takes to the Air Volumes I, II, III apellegreno@yahoo.com

MISCELLANEOUS

www.aerolist.org, Aviations’ Leading Marketplace.

REALESTATE

Green Lake, WI! 100 feet of Lake Frontage for sale on beautiful Green Lake. Great shing and swimming. 30 miles from EAA grounds. Call Dan 608 212 9556

Florida keys Tavernaero Airpark 2/2 up and 1/1 down. CBS Construction, Central Air, screened pool, marina, air pad. $750,000 owner/agent 305-304-8393

SERVICES

Always Flying Aircraft Restoration, LLC:

Annual Inspections, Airframe recovering,

fabric repairs and complete restorations. Wayne A. Forshey A&P & I.A. 740-472-

1481 Ohio and bordering states.

Restoration, fabric, paint, fabrications, paperwork. With 53 completed projects,

Waco’s, Moth’s, Champs, Lakes, Pitts etc. Test ights and delivery. Indiana 480-209-

2680 sales@wildcataviation.com, www.

wildcataviation.com

WANTED

Wanted for Warner 165 installation. One control Box Type 318 for Eclipse 15V 15A Generator Model 1, Type 308. Contact robert.bishop@ns.sympatico.ca or 902-

584-3511

VAA Headband VAA Blue Hat Polar fleece blue beanie is a Black 2 ply headband
VAA Headband
VAA Blue Hat
Polar fleece blue beanie is a
Black 2 ply headband has a
fleece outer with a double
layer for extra warmth.
quick pull-on for light weight
warm comfort.
52664461400000 $13.99 *
(One size fits most.)
$14.99 *
5266461500000
VAA Neck Gaiter
Fleece lined with VAA design,
this attractive brown gaiter is
perfect for all outings.
(One size fits most.)
$13.99 *
5266461300000
Fleece Flyer Hat
Detail
Sherpa-lined front
and earflaps with
adjustable elastic locking chin strap. Brave
any weahter challenge with warmth.
Size 7 1/2. (One size fits most.)
$17.99 *
5266461600000
www.shopeaa.com/vaa
Telephone Orders: 800-843-3612
From US and Canada (All Others Call 920-426-5912)
*Shipping and handling NOT included.
Major credit cards accepted.
WI residents add 5% sales tax.
VINTAGE AIRCRAFT ASSOCIATION OFFICERS President Geoff Robison 1521 E. MacGregor Dr. New Haven, IN 46774
VINTAGE
AIRCRAFT
ASSOCIATION
OFFICERS
President
Geoff Robison
1521 E. MacGregor Dr.
New Haven, IN 46774
Vice-President
George Daubner
N57W34837 Pondview Ln
Oconomowoc, WI 53066
260-493-4724
262-560-1949
chief7025@aol.com
gdaubner@eaa.org
Secretary
Steve Nesse
2009 Highland Ave.
Albert Lea, MN 56007
Treasurer
Dan Knutson
106 Tena Marie Circle
Lodi, WI 53555
507-373-1674
608-592-7224
stnes2009@live.com
lodicub@charter.net
DIRECTORS
Steve Bender
Dale A. Gustafson
85 Brush Hill Road
7724
Shady Hills Dr.
Sherborn, MA 01770
Indianapolis, IN 46278
508-653-7557
317-293-4430
sst10@comcast.net
dalefaye@msn.com
David Bennett
Jeannie Hill
375
Killdeer Ct
P.O. Box 328
Lincoln, CA 95648
Harvard, IL 60033-0328
916-952-9449
920-426-6110
antiquer@inreach.com
Jerry Brown
4605 Hickory Wood Row
Greenwood, IN 46143
Espie “Butch” Joyce
704 N. Regional Rd.
Greensboro, NC 27409
336-668-3650
317-422-9366
windsock@aol.com
lbrown4906@aol.com
Steve Krog
Dave Clark
1002 Heather Ln.
635 Vestal Lane
Hartford, WI 53027
Plainfield, IN 46168
262-966-7627
317-839-4500
sskrog@aol.com
davecpd@att.net
Robert D. “Bob” Lumley
John S. Copeland
1265
South 124th St.
1A Deacon Street
Brookfield, WI 53005
Northborough, MA 01532
262-782-2633
508-393-4775
rlumley1@wi.rr.com
copeland1@juno.com
S.H. “Wes” Schmid
Phil Coulson
2359
Lefeber Avenue
28415 Springbrook Dr.
Wauwatosa, WI 53213
Lawton, MI 49065
414-771-1545
269-624-6490
shschmid@gmail.com
rcoulson516@cs.com
DIRECTORS
EMERITUS
Robert C. Brauer
9345 S. Hoyne
Charlie Harris
PO Box 470350
Chicago, IL
60643
Tulsa, OK 74147
773-779-2105
918-622-8400
photopilot@aol.com
cwh@hvsu.com
Gene Chase
E.E. “Buck” Hilbert
2159 Carlton Rd.
8102 Leech Rd.
Oshkosh, WI 54904
Union, IL 60180
920-231-5002
815-923-4591
GRCHA@charter.net
buck7ac@gmail.com
Ronald C. Fritz
15401 Sparta Ave.
Gene Morris
5936 Steve Court
Kent City, MI
49330
Roanoke, TX 76262
616-678-5012
817-491-9110
rFritz@pathwaynet.com
genemorris@charter.net
John Turgyan
PO Box 219
New Egypt, NJ 08533
609-752-1944
jrturgyan4@aol.com
TM

Membership Services Directory

Enjoy the many benefits of EAA and EAA’s Vintage Aircraft Association

benefits of EAA and EAA’s Vintage Aircraft Association TM EAA Aviation Center, PO Box 3086, Oshkosh
TM
TM

EAA Aviation Center, PO Box 3086, Oshkosh WI 54903-3086

Phone (920) 426-4800

Fax (920) 426-4873

Web Sites: www.vintageaircraft.org, www.airventure.org, www.eaa.org/memberbenefits

E-Mail: vintageaircraft@eaa.org

EAA and Division Membership Services (8:00 AM–6:00 PM

Monday–Friday CST)

800-564-6322

F AX 920-426-4873

www.eaa.org/memberbenefits

membership@eaa.org

•New/renew memberships

•Addr ess changes

•Mer chandise sales

•Gift memberships

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

888-322-4636

www.airventure.org

airventure@eaa.org

Sport Pilot/Light-Spor t Aircraft Hotline

877-359-1232

www.sportpilot.org

sportpilot@eaa.org

 

Programs and Activities

 

Auto Fuel STCs

920-426-4843

 

stc@eaa.org

EAA Air Academy

920-426-6880

www.airacademy.org

airacademy@eaa.org

EAA Scholarships

920-426-6823

 

scholarships@eaa.org

Library Ser vices/Resear ch

920-426-4848

 

slurvey@eaa.or g

 

Benefits

AUA Vintage Insurance Plan

800-727-3823

www.auaonline.com

 

EAA Aircraft Insurance Plan

866-647-4322

www.eaa.org/memberbenefits

membership@eaa.org

EAA VISA Car d

800-853-5576 ext. 8884

   

EAA Her tz Rent-A-Car Pr ogram

800-654-2200

www.eaa.org/hertz

membership@eaa.org

VAA Editorial/Executive Dir ector

920-426-4825

www.vintageaircraft.org

vintage@eaa.org

VAA Offi ce

920-426-6110

 

tbooks@eaa.org

EAA Members Information Line

888-EAA-INFO (322-4636)

Use this toll-fr ee number for: infor mation about AirV enture Oshkosh; aer omedical and technical aviation questions;

chapters; and Y oung Eagles. Please have your membership number r

eady when calling.

Office hours ar e 8:15 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (Monday - Friday , CST)

MEMBERSHIP INFORMATION

EAA

Membership in the Experimental Aircraft Association, Inc. is $40 for one year, includ- ing 12 issues of SPORT AVIATION. Family membership is an additional $10 annually. All major credit cards accepted for membership. (Add $16 for International Postage.)

FOREIGN MEMBERSHIPS

Please submit your remittance with a check or draft drawn on a United States bank payable in United States dollars. Add required Foreign Postage amount for each membership.

VINTAGE AIRCRAFT ASSOCIATION

Current EAA members may join the Vintage Aircraft Association and receive VINTAGE AIRPLANE magazine for an additional $36 per year. EAA Membership, VINTAGE AIRPLANE magazine and one year membership in the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association is available for $46 per

year (SPORT AVIATION magazine not included). (Add $7 for International Postage.)

WARBIRDS

Current EAA members may join the EAA Warbirds of America Division and receive WARBIRDS magazine for an additional $45 per year. EAA Membership, WARBIRDS mag- azine and one year membership in the Warbirds Division is available for $55 per year (SPOR AVIATION magazine not included). (Add $7 for International Postage.) IAC

Current EAA members may join the International Aerobatic Club, Inc. Divi- sion and receive SPORT AEROBATICS magazine for an additional $45 per year. EAA Membership, SPORT AEROBAT- ICS magazine and one year membership in the IAC Division is available for $55 per year (SPORT AVIATION magazine not in- cluded). (Add $15 for Foreign Postage.)

Membership dues to EAA and its divisions are not tax deductible as charitable contributions

Copyright ©2012 by the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association, All rights reserved. VINTAGE AIRPLANE (USPS 062-750; ISSN 0091-6943) is published and owned exclusively by the EAA Vintage Aircraft Association of the Experimental Aircraft Association and is published monthly at EAA Avia- tion Center, 3000 Poberezny Rd., PO Box 3086, Oshkosh, Wisconsin 549023-3086, e-mail: vintageaircraft@eaa.org. Membership to Vintage Aircraft Association, which includes 12 issues of Vintage Airplane magazine, is $36 per year for EAA members and $46 for non-EAA members. Periodicals Postage paid at Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54902 and at additional mailing ofces. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Vintage Airplane, PO Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. CPC #40612608. FOREIGN AND APO ADDRESSES—Please allow at least two months for delivery of VINTAGE AIRPLANE to foreign and APO addresses via surface mail. ADVERTISING — Vintage Aircraft Association does not guarantee or endorse any product offered through the advertising. We invite constructive criticism and welcome any report of inferior merchandise obtained through our advertising so that corrective measures can be taken. EDITORIAL POLICY: Members are encouraged to submit stories and photographs. Policy opinions expressed in articles are solely those of the authors. Responsibility for accuracy in reporting rests entirely with the contributor. No remuneration is made. Material should be sent to: Editor, VINTAGE AIRPLANE, PO Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. Phone 920-426-4800. EAA® and EAA SPORT AVIATION®, the EAA Logo® and Aeronautica™ are registered trademarks, trademarks, and service marks of the Experimental Aircraft Association, Inc. The use of these trademarks and service marks without the permission of the Experimental Aircraft Association, Inc. is strictly prohibited.