Page 1


By Brad Thorn as President

Antique/Classic Division

The annual EAA International Convention is an avia­ tion landmark. Each year thousands of members and en­ thusiasts return and other thousands attend the Conven­ tion for the first time. What is it that brings so many fine people together once a year? It all began in 1953 when Paul Poberezny started EAA in the basement of his home and the first fly-in brought out one homebuilt and a few antiques and warbirds. The initial purpose was to promote homebuilt aircraft and get them approved by the FAA for recreational flight. It did come to pass and look what we have today. Amateur builders are allowed to construct and build aircraft of their own design, plans are offered to builders and approved kits are available. As EAA grew, so did the demand for what we now call Divisions, which are special interest groups within EAA. This is how the EAA Antique/Classic Division began. When the International Convention was moved from Rockford to Oshkosh the meet grew rapidly and it soon became evident that what we now call antique and classic aircraft would comprise about 50% of the show aircraft in attendance. An informative group of volunteers would be required to handle the traffic, parking and other Conven­ tion-related requirements; thus the formation of the Divi­ sion. As we grew and became more competent, we began to formulate a purpose and plan for growth. Each year, we found we were doing something right, for the membership continued to grow and at Convention time we were never short of volunteers to make our part of the Convention an unqualified success. The Red Barn headquarters is representative of the era of the vintage aircraft we bring to Oshkosh each year. The grass around Ollie's Woods is reminiscent of the past years of grass pastUre airports, and as always, the shade offers a relaxing place for EAA members to enjoy themselves. As the years went by we attempted to add something new each year to make the member's visit more enjoyable. The Parade of Flight began with a relatively small quan­ tity of aircraft, flown in review at the Convention. It's quite a sight today, as some one hundred aircraft represen­ tative of the 52-year period prior to December 31, 1955 can be viewed in flight at one time and place. As time progressed, it became evident that a consider­ able variance existed in the judging methods used through­ out the country. In 1976 we formed a committee to deter­ mine judging standards which could be used universally not only for antique and classic aircraft, but also for all types of sport aircraft. These standards and an outline of the point system have been published in a manual titled, "Guidebook for Aircraft Judging," which is available from EAA Headquarters for $1.50 postpaid. (Claude Gray de­ scribed this Guidebook in detail in his guest editorial, page

2 AUGUST 1983

2, July 1983 VINTAGE AIRPLANE.) Thisjudging system is used at Oshkosh and is entirely suitable for all fly-ins including those one-day events. Members attending Oshkosh '83 will note two new items of interest. First, the Red Barn has been altered somewhat to provide more useable space, by converting the "lean- to" on the south side to an enclosed room acces­ sible from inside the barn. This area will be for the display of merchandise, complimenting a recently inaugerated sales program, and also a place for volunteers to relax. The second innovation has been mentioned in previous issues of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE and concerns the space which has been allotted in the Antique/Classic tent near the Red Barn for use by several type clubs and the OX-5 Aviation Pioneers. These groups will be able to promote their activities, solicit new members, and above all, enjoy the abundant fellowship in the Antique/Classic area. So what is it that brings so many people together each year? We have touched upon several points concerning Antique/Classic members including a common interest. Many of us plan an Oshkosh vacation each year. Some like to camp, others like to relax in motel rooms, private homes or the college rooms available during the Conven­ tion; but all in all, we like to be together and enjoy the facilities available for the entire family. We arrive by car, aircraft, motor home, camper, motorcycle, etc. Where else in the world could one find such facilities, and also be able to enjoy a full week of aviation entertainment, educational projects, workshops, forums, daily airshows and free even­ ing entertainment? It is only at Oshkosh during the annual EAA International Convention. Above all, a common interest in sport aviation has drawn us together, whether it be a special interest group , or just the love of aviation and its related events. To be a part of this vast and widely supported aviation sector is an exciting and satisfying experience. The involvement of the members ofEAA and its supportive divisions has made possible the growth of the organization and the EAA Foun­ dation. When you visit the new facility during the Conven­ tion this year, think back to 1953 when it all began , and then look at what you have done to be a part of this fantastic organization. •


Gene R. Chase

AUGUST 1983 • Vol. 11, No.8


Pat Etter



Norman Petersen FEATURE WRITER

George A. Hardie, Jr.





Vice President

W. Brad Thomas, Jr.

Jack C. Winthrop

301 Dodson Mill Road Pilot Mountain, NC 27041 919/368·2875 Home 919-368-2291 Office

Route 1, Box 111 Allen, TX 75002 2141727-5649

Contents 2

Straight and Level by Brad Thomas


A/CNews by Gene Chase


A Gathering of Aeroncas by Gene Chase


Grand Champion Champ by Gene Chase



M. C. "Kelly" Viets

E. E. "Buck" Hilbert

Route 2, Box 128 Lyndon, KS 66451 913/828-3518

P.O. Box 145 Union. IL 60180 815/923-4591


Aeronca LC Low-Wing by Gene Chase


BordenlThompson Aeroplane Posters from the 1930s


Primary in a J-3 Cub

by Gene Chase

by Don Toeppen



Stinson NC18425 Sparks Memories by Edward E. Beatty

Ronald Fritz

Claude L. Gray, Jr.

15401 Sparta Avenue Kent City. MI 49330 616/678-5012

9635 Sylvia Avenue

Northridge, CA 91324


Dale A. Gustafson AI Kelch 7724 Shady Hill Drive 66 W. 622 N. Madison Ave. Indianapolis. IN 46274 Cedarburg. WI 53012 317/293-4430 414/377-5886 Robert E. Kesel

Morton W. Lester

455 Oakridge Drive Rochester, NY 14617 716/342-3170

P.O. Box 3747

Martinsville, VA 24112


Arthur R. Morgan

John R. Turgyan

3744 North 51st Blvd. Milwaukee. WI 53216 414/442-3631

1530 Kuser Road Trenton, NJ 08619 609/585-2747

S. J. Wittman

George S. York

Box 2672 Oshkosh. WI 54901 414/235-1265

181 Sloboda Ave. Mansfield. OH 44906 419/529-4378


A Moment in Time by AI Wheeler

24 25

Calendar of Events Mystery Plane


Letters to the Editor

by George Hardie

FRONT COVER . .. Aerial view of the First National Aeronca Clubs of America Fly-In at the site of the Aeronca factory, Hook Field. Middletown. OH. Photo by Gene Chase from Bill Pancake's award-win­ ning customized Aeronca Champ. See story on page 5.

BACK COVER .. . Bellanca Long Wing "Liberty" being prepared for non-stop flight from New York to Copenhagen. Denmark by Holger Hoiriis and Otto Hillig. Photo dated March 1931 is from the John Warren collection donated to the EAA Aviation Library.

ADVISORS John S. Copeland

Stan Gomoll

9 Joanne Drive Westborough, MA 01581 6171366-7245

1042 90th Lane. NE Minneapolis. MN 55434 6121784-1172

Robert G. Herman

Esple M. Joyce, Jr.

W 164 N9530 Water Street Menomonee Falls. WI 53051 414/251-9253

Box 468 Madison. NC 27025 919/427-0216

Gene Morris

Daniel Neuman

27 Chandelle Drive Hampshire, IL 60140 3121683-3199

1521 Berne Circle W.

Minneapolis, MN 55421


Roy Redman

S H. "Wes" Schmid

Rt. 1. Box 39 Kilkenny, MN 56052 507/334-5922

2359 Lefeber Road Wauwatosa, WI 53213 4141771-1545

Editorial Policy: Readers 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. Material should be sent to: Gene R. Chase. Editor. The VINTAGE AIRPLANE. P.O. Box 229, Hales Corners. WI 53130. THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE (ISSN 0091-6943) is published and owned exclusively by EAA Antique/Classic Division , Inc. of the Experimental Aircraft Association. Inc. and is published monthly at 11311 W . Forest Home Ave ., Franklin, Wisconsin 53132 , P.O. Box 229 , Hales Corners, Wisconsin 53130. Second Class Postage paid at Hales Corners Post Office. Hales Corners , Wisconsin 53130 and additional mailing offices. MemberShip rates for EAA Antique/Classic Division. Inc. are $18.00 for current ':.AA members for 12 month period of which $12.00 is for the publication of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE. Membership is open to all who are interested in aviation. ADVERTISING - Antique/Classic Division does not guarantee or endorse any product offered through our advertising. We invite constructive criticism and welcome any report of inferior merchandise obtained through our advertising so that corrective measures can be taken . Postmaster: Send address changes to EAA Antique/Classic Division. Inc .• P.O. box 229, Hales Corners. WI 53130. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 3




(Photo by Ted Koston)

Buck Hilbert in United Airlines' much-traveled Swallow, N6070, SIN 968.

(Photo by Dick Stouffer at Oshkosh '73)

The prototype Rearwin Model 8135, NC25451 donated by George Williams.

Two more aircraft have been accepted by the EAA Aviation Foundation; the 1939 Rearwin Cloudster, NC25451 , SIN 809 donated by George T. Williams (EAA 20934 , AIC 1384), Poynette, WI and a n Osprey II, N346JS donated by John S. Schifferer (EAA 93112), Escondido, CA. The Rearwin is the prototype Model 8135 and is pow­ ered with a Ken-Royce 7 -G engine of 120 hp. This particu­ lar airplane was featured on one of the old "Wings" cigarette cards in the 1940s. Those cards were, and still are, popular collectors' items.

NEW VULTEE TYPE CLUB The Vultee Owners and Pilots' Association has been formed and its first newsletter has been mailed . If you're the owner or a fa n of the Vultee BT-13/15 and want tojoin and receive the newsletter , send $10.00 to Col. Frank A. Augustine, 1545 Red Cedar Rd ., Eagan , MN 55121.

SIEMENS ENGINE NEEDED Juan Giralt of Madrid, Spain is restoring the famed Bucker Jungmeister EC-ALP owned by Senor Aresti , the originator of the Aresti system of aerobatic "hierog­ lyphics". The airplane is now fitted with a Lycoming en­ gine, but Giralt wants to refit it with a Siemens radial. If a ny of you have information on the availability of a Siemens Sh 14A-4, please contact Senor Juan Giralt, cl Ca noa 29 Bajo D, Madrid 22 , Spa in.

4 AUGUST 1983

AntiquelClassic Division Treasurer E . E. "Buck" Hil­ bert spent most of March, April and May of this year in Japan flyi ng United Airlines' Swallow to promote United's new 747 service to Tokyo. The Swallow was airlifted in a 474 freighter and placed on exhibit in Japan's largest shopping center. Later, Buck flew the plane to Kobe and other cities in Japan . After the Swallow's return to the U.S., it was displayed in July in Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry to help commemorate the 50th anniversary of that institu­ tion. Buck Hilbert is a captain with United Airlines and also a director of the EAA Aviation Foundation.

RENO AIR RACES ­ 20th ANNIVERSARY Maj . Gen. Floyd Edsall (Ret.), director of the Reno National Championship Air Races and Air Show disclosed that an "unprecedented number of racing aircraft" will be in the pits when the four-day event opens on September 15 at Stead Field, 10 miles north of Reno, Nevada . More than $300,000 is available for prize money in five classes of closed course, pylon racing, to be shared by Unlimiteds, T-6s, Formula (lXL), Racing Biplanes and Sport Biplanes. This year's event will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Reno Air Races and will also be in conjunction with the Air and Space Bicentennial marking man's first ascen­ sion into space. In recognition ofthese two historical dates, an extra day has been added to the show. The supporting air show will feature the Eagles, the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, the U.S. Navy's Blue Angels, the Ray-Ban Golds, the U.S. Army's Golden Knights , Betty Stewart, Bob Hoover, Art Scholl plus a host of other indi­ vidua l performers. Although final arrangements are not yet complete, three racing pilots from England and three from France are making preparations to have their airplanes tra ns­ ported to th is country so they can compete. For addit ional information contact the Reno Air Races, P.O. Box 1429 , Reno, NV 89505, Tel. 702 /826-7500 . •

1935 Aeronca C-3, N15252, SIN A-572 received Best C-2/C-3 Award. Owned by Les Steen, Lansing, MI.

Hook Field at Middletown, Ohio was host to one of the largest gatherings of Aeroncas ever, on June 10-12, 1983 when 115 various models were registered for the First National Aeronca Clubs of America Fly-In. This event was the brainchild of Jim and Betty Thompson of Roberts, Illinois and was co-sponsored by four Aeronca "type clubs": the Aeronca Club, the Aeronca Sedan Club, the Aeronca Lover's Club and the Aeronca A viator's Club. For all but three of the planes, it was a trip back home as they had been manufactured in the Aeronca plant at Hook Field between 1940 and 1951. The other three were two model C-3s and one LC which were built in the 30s when Aeronca was located at Lunken Airport, Cincinnati, Ohio. Aeronca moved to Middletown in 1940 partly because of the disastrous flooding of the Ohio River in 1937 which inundated Lunken Field. One old-time employee recalls seeing two Aeroncas floating off down the river at that time. The three day fly-in included bus tours on Friday to nearby Dayton to see the U .S. Air Force Museum and tours through the Aeronca plant at Hook Field on Saturday. The folks at Aeronca were delighted with the grand turnout and they rolled out the red carpet for fly-in atten足 dees. Employees conducted guided tours through the plant, pointing out the location of the old Aeronca production lines and explaining the various items currently being manufactured, such as component parts for NASA's space shuttlecraft, Boeing-Vertol Chinook helicopter, Boeing 747, Lockheed L-1 011 , Grumman F -14 plus several more. Aeronca has less than 500 employees at their Middletown plant today, compared with 1,800 in 191f? when they averaged 31 Champs and Chiefs per day, wit'1\. the peak production occurring during the month of June at 48 planes per day. One employee said they "flooded the market" with Aeroncas.

Story and photos by Gene Chase

George Wedekind, manager of Hook Field at Middletown, OH.

Some of those same planes were on the flight line once again, many looking as good as the day they first rolled out of the factory . Several retired Aeronca employees came to see the spectacle and renew old memories. One old-timer VINTAGE AIRPLANE 5


John and Steven Hause, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada are greeted by one of the parking crew as they arrive in their 1938 Chief, C-GGJX.

Aircraft judges, Buck Hilbert, Dale Wolford (Chairman) and George York.

Dorothy and Irv Woodhams, Lake Placid, FL and Kalamazoo, MI with a quart of oil for their 1941 Chief, N31948 which was flown to the fly-in from its home base in Michigan by Robert Carpenter. This Chief and N31925 flown by son Don Woodhams were the only '41 Chiefs in attendance and both were purchased new by Irv. Incidentally, Irv is 85 years young. 6 AUGUST 1983

Bill and Marilyn Shatt from Sparta, NJ camped on the field with their 1943 Model L-3B, N47502.

Dick Alkire, Dayton, OH displays the Best Pre-War Tandem Award received by the 1943 Aeronca 0 -58B, N35BB restored by himself and fellow EAAer Roger James.

came specifically to see a low wing Aeronca and he wasn't disappointed. David Powell of West Des Moines, Iowa was there with his newly restored 1937 Aeronca LC, one of only two known to be flying today. (See story on page 12). Jim Thompson, fly-in organizer, owns the other LC. One of the 115 Aeroncas in attendance was from Canada while the remainder were from throughout the eastern U.S., with club members coming from all over the country. They arrived via auto, airline , or other types of aircraft which numbered 48. A listing of award winners gives an indication of the various Aeronca models at the fly-in: Grand Champion Antique - LC , N17484, David Powell, West Des Moines, IA Grand Champion Classic - 7AC, N84998, Bob Armstrong, Rawlings, MD Best in Class C-2/C-3 - C-3, N15252, Les Steen, Lansing, MI Pre-War Tandem - 0-58B, N35BB, Dick Alkire, Dayton, OH Pre-War Side-By-Side - 50C, N21308, Dale Gilbert, Fremont,OH Post-War Champ - 7AC, N85448, Ron Wojnar, Mil足 waukee, WI

Post-War Chief - 11AC, N85829 , Al Nase, Rehoboth Beach, DE Sedan - 15AC, N1491H, Jim Thompson, Roberts, IL Military - L-3B, N48407 , Paul Grice, Waynesville, OH Pre-War Custom - 65CA, N31948, Robert Carpenter, Vicksburg, MI (Aircraft owned by Irv Woodhams) Post-War Custom - 7AC , N1390E , Bill Pancake, Keyser, WV '41 Chief - 65CA, N31925 , Don Woodhams, South Haven, MI Longest Distance - 1,250 miles, 65CA/85, N33731, Ken Rickert, Lakeland, FL Note that two of the above winners are past Grand Champion winners at Oshkosh, namely Wojnar's Champ and Thompson's Sedan. This will give a clue as to the quality of the restored Champ which won the Grand Champion Classic Award for Bob Armstrong. (See story on page 10). The hard-working judges were Dale Wolford (Chair足 man), Ashland, OH; George York, Mansfield, OH and Buck Hilbert, Union, IL. In addition to the trophies above, two special awards for meritorious service were presented, one to John Houser, an engineer with Aeronca who, over the years has provided

Main entrance to the offices at the Aeronca plant at Middletown, OH.

Next to the last L-3C built, N47811 , SIN 43-26752 was manufac足 tured on 4/26/43. Ownedlflown by Clarence Brown and son Eric, Jordan, MN. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 7

Grand Champion Antique was this rare 1937 Aeronca LC, N17484, SIN 2060. Power is 90 hp Warner. Owned by David Powell, West Des Moines, IA.

Jim and Betty Thompson's 1951 Aeronca 15AC, N1491H won the Best Sedan Award.


" '.

Standing (L-R): Buzz Wagner, Pat Wegner, Betty Thompson, Julie Dickey, Gene and Dorothy Chase. Kneeling: Jim Thompson, Augie Wegner, Joe Dickey and Dick Welsh. 8 AUGUST 1983

invaluable research assistance to restorers of Aeronca aircraft, and one to Jim and Betty Thompson for their efforts in organizing the Aeronca Fly-In. The highlight of the Saturday night banquet which was attended by 415 Aeronca enthusiasts plus several Aeronca employees and retirees, was a talk by Mr. Joe L. Miller, Chairman ofthe Board, President and ChiefExecu­ tive Officer of Aeronca, Inc. Mr. Miller attended the fly-in from his home in North Carolina where the corporate offices are located in Pineville, He expressed pleasure with the continued interest in the planes his company built so many years ago and stated his desire to see Aeronca get back into the aircraft man­ ufacturing business again with a design in the ultralight category. He is familiar with the "FP-101," a Champ look­ alike and "Le Pelican," the Canadian pseudo-C-3, and feels with today's modern technology that a strong and safe small aircraft could be produced which would qualify as an ultralight within FAA regulations. Not that a new Aeronca design would look like a Champ or C-3, but wouldn't it be great to see factory new Aeronca aircraft on the market again? Preceding Mr. Miller's talk was an interesting address by Mr. Gordon J . Wolfe, Secretary of Aeronca, Inc. who recounted some of the trials and tribulations of the early days of the company. Also on the evening program was Mr. Val C. Baiz, former Plant Superintendent and the originator of the "Champ" assembly line, and Mr. George Wedekind, Manager of Hook Field who announced that he and Mr. Miller were each contributing $500 checks to help finance a 1984 Aeronca Fly-In. That was good news to everyone because there had been no firm plans to make this an annual event, but with such support by both Aeronca and airport management, the 2nd Annual Aeronca Fly-In is virtually assured. And additional support was promised by the officers and mem­ bers of local EAA Chapter 784, who assisted with aircraft parking and other duties this year. For a first time event this fly-in was highly successful, thanks to the herculean efforts ofJim and Betty Thompson with the assistance and support of Augie and Pat Wegner (Aeronca Club), Dick Welsh (Aeronca Sedan Club), Buzz Wagner (Aeronca Lover's Club) and Joe and Julie Dickey (Aeronca Aviators Club). Those in attendance were unani­ mous in wanting to return and I predict the Aeronca Club Fly-In will become an institution as has the Waco Club Fly-In held annually at Hamilton, OH, now in its 24th year.


Bill Pancake, Keyser, WV in his Continental 0-200 powered, full IFR custom Aeronca Champ.

(L-R): Dr. Robert Poling, Cumberland, MD, Jay Spenser, Curato­ rial Assistant at the National Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC, and Jeff Miller with AOPA in Washington, DC discuss Aeroncas under the wing of Bob Armstrong's Champ.

ABOUT THE AERONCA CLUBS The following is a brief history of the four Aeronca Clubs and their leaders: Aeronca Club - Oldest of the clubs, it was taken over by Augie and Pat Wegner from the retiring Ed Shubert about two years ago. The goals of this club are to maintain a roster of its more than 200 mem­ bers, provide a newsletter for communication, make available copies of manuals, etc. , sponsor fly-ins and work with all people involved with Aeroncas. Contact Wegners at 1432 28th Court, Kenosha, WI 53140, 414/552-9014. Aeronca Sedan Club - Is now six years old and was started by Dick Welsh, who had been a Sedan owner for about three years. He sends newsletters to the nearly 300 Sedan owners registered in the U.S., Canada and a few other countries, providing information, maintenance help, sources of new and used parts and descriptions of available S.T.C.s in­ cluding a 180 hp Lycoming conversion and metal

(L-R): Louis Gaston, Treasurer of EAA Chapter 784, Wally Baldwin and Jim Thompson. •

fuel tanks. Dick can be contacted at 2311 E. Lake Sammanish PI. S.E., Issaquah, WA 98027. Aeronca Lover's Club - Started a couple years ago by Buzz and Lloydine Wagner. Buzz is well known for his Aeronca Forums each year at Oshkosh. Buzz is an aircraft rebuilder and mechanic with great fondness for Aeroncas. He has S.T.C.s for gre­ ater hp Lycoming and Continental conversions on the post-war Champs and Chiefs. He also provides informational newsletters to over 200 members. The Wagners can be reached at Box 3, 401 1st St. East, Clark, SD 57225. Aeronca Aviators Club - Going on its second year with a membership of over 200. It was started by Joe and Julie Dickey after Charlie Lasher retired from the Aeronca Owners Club which he had for . many years. They provide commercial sources for parts and services, tips on maintenance, news of fly-ins and air tours, and a questions and answer column for owners. They are still able to consult with Mr. Lasher and draw on his vast experience to help members with technical problems. Contact the Dickeys at 511 Terrace Lake Road , Columbus, IN 47201, 812/342-6878. • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 9

Top award winner at the First Aeronca Fly-In was this 1946 Aeronca 7AC Champ owned by Bob Armstrong, Rawlings, MD.

rIJIJA SIJlJm}liolJ SAlim Story and photos by Gene Chase In 1981 retired U .S.A.F. Col. Clement H. Armstrong (known as Harold to many) and his son, Bob from Rawlings, Maryland attracted considrable attention when they flew their newly restored 1927 OX-5 powered Waco 10 to Oshkosh and captured the Reserve Grand Champion Award. So that Bob would have something to build up time in during the lengthy restoration period on the Waco, Harold purchased a 1946 Aeronca 7AC Champ, NC84998, SIN 7AC-3722 . This champ had been in the Virginia and West Virginia area all its life prior to its purchase in 1974 by Armstrong. The first order of business was to overhaul the Conti足 nental A-65 before Bob started a 700-hour flying stint in the bird. At the end of this period Harold transfered the title to the Champ to Bob and a decision was made to restore the plane back to factory original. The engine was overhauled again, by Bill Pancake, an AI and good friend from nearby Keyser, West Virginia. 10 AUGuST 1983

Bill is an expert and perfectionist and does the mainte足 nance and re-licensing of many aircraft in the area. As with all outstanding restorations, many hours were spent in research to assure authenticity. Here again, tri足 bute is paid to John Houser, an engineer with Aeronca , Inc. in Middletown, Ohio who provided blueprints and other technical data for this project. For example, John supplied information which enabled the Armstrongs to duplicate the original covering method such as fabric laps, seams, location of inspection rings , etc. The plane is covered with cotton and finished with nitrate and butyrate dope and acrylic lacquer on the metal. The colors of newly restored Champs usually evoke arguments because one sees nearly as many different shades of yellow and red as there are planes. Here's the way the Armstrongs handled the problem. First, they got the original paint specs from John Houser. Aeronca obtained their colors from the Seagrave Corporation, but today this company will fill special orders

only with a 25 gallon minimum order. Not wanting to purchase·25 gallons of each color, they contacted Randolph with their problem. Randolph came up with equivalent color numbers and offered to supply the special mix in minimum lots of five gallons. An order was placed and the Armstrongs are as pleased with the outcome as they were with the Randolph dope used on the Waco 10. During the Aeronca Fly-In some obervers commented that the yellow on NC84998 looked a little brighter and da rker than it should be. However, three Aeronca factory employees agreed it looked more a uthentic than any other Champs on the field. Harold suggests that in the early days many Champs were tied down outside and the colors naturally faded in time. Consequently most people have memories of the "lighter" colored Champs than when they first left the factory . Also, only one coat of yellow was applied by Aeronca originally (hot dope method, equivalent to two coats). The Armstrongs applied three good cross coats of yellow plus an extra coat on the top of the wing. They noticed that as successive coats were sprayed, the color darkened. They feel they are right on with their colors and Randolph agrees. In finishing the interior, the proper material was lo­ cated in a local fabric shop, t hen taken to an upholstery shop to be sewn up using the fabric as a pattern. This was a waste of time and money because the finished pro­ duct didn't fit and all of Mrs. Harold Armstrong's efforts to alter it were unsuccessful. She ended up discarding the misfit and made a new one from scratch which worked out vpry well. All of the hardware that went into the project was new 1 ld double checked by Bob with reference to the Parts Lanual. One problem was encountered in locating the long machine screws which hold the lower wrapper cowl to­ gether. Unable to find them, Harold's brother in California was contacted as he had access to a machine shop. He made up a complete set out of stainless steel. In fact, all the screws used in the restoration were of stainless rather than cadmium plated because the former maintain the "new" look indefinitely. Another problem facing Aeronca Champ retorers is replacing the windshield. The Armstrongs looked for two years before they found a manufacturer who could provide an original, standard profile windshield, using molds

exactly as done originally by Aeronca. Most people are going with the bubble type windshields, blown under heat in an oven, which aren't shaped quite right. Bob's Champ was missing all the original instruments, but by doing some "horsetrading" he came up with a set of original type gages. The most troublesome was finding an airworthy Airpath magnetic compass. The originals used rubber diaphragms which haven't been manufactured for years. In their searching they acquired an Airpath B-15 com­ pass which was serviceable and holding fluid. Noting that it had metal bellows and was better engineered with an improved card mount, they put the B-16 "innards" in an original type Airpath case and the instrument looks and works great. The tach presented less of a dilemma. Several years ago the original one failed and was replaced with a record­ ing unit. Not wanting to replace the newer type shaft and drive, they mated the recording tach mechanism with the original case, including the old face and hand, and solved that problem. Back in the 40s, Harold worked for a F.B.O. who was also an Aeronca dealer. This man had a prop on display bearing the original combined SensenichiAeronca decal. Remembering this, Harold contacted his old boss who loaned the prop to him so he could have a local craftsman photograph and reproduce the decal. Next they took the new decals to the Sensenich Propeller Company and or­ dered a new prop made to Aeronca specs . . . naturally with the original-type decals installed. This beautiful Aeronca Champ was licensed on June 1, a scant nine days before the First Aeronca Fly-In, so it had only a few hours oflocal time before its first cross-coun­ try back "home" to Middletown. The flight was made with no problems after a minor mag glitch was remedied the evening before departure. The shiny new Champ was ac­ companied to and from the fly-in by four other Aeroncas, most of which are based at Keyser, West Virginia. The Armstrongs' efforts were not in vain, for the Champ received the Grand Champion Classic Award over some very tough competition. I first had the feeling this plane was something special when I noted an original Owner's Manual and an old sectional chart in the map pocket on the door. The 1945 chart was printed with the latest revi­ sions dated one month before the Champ was first delivered from the factory in July 1946 . .. and of course the chart included Middletown, Ohio!

This is precisely how the artwork on the fin and rudder looked when new Champs first left the factory.

(L-R): Bob and Harold Armstrong with John Houser, the ex­ tremely knowledgeable and helpful engineer with Aeronca, Inc. who has helped so many restorers of Aeronca aircraft. VINTAGE AIR PLANE 11



This 1937 Aeronca LC, NC17484 was named Grand Champion at the Aeronca Fly-In.

Story and photos by Gene Chase Many folks don't visualize a low-wing aircraft when they think of Aeronca, but in 1936 and 1937 the Aeronca plant at Lunken Field in Cincinnati, Ohio built approxi­ mately 60 of their new design. There were three versions of the "Model L," designated "LA" when powered with the 70 hp LeBlond 5DE, "LB" with the 85 hp LeBland 5DF and "LC" with the reliable 90 hp Warner Scarab Jr. As interest in the L Series waned it was replaced with the less expensive Model K in 1937. Regular attendees at the annual AAA Fly-Ins at Ot­ tumwa, Iowa in the mid-sixties will recall seeing a white and red Aeronca LC owned by "Shorty" Kellow of Des Moines, Iowa, Shorty bought the LC in about 1962 and flew it until 1968 when it was damaged in a windstorm. He passed away before repairs were completed and the plane was made available by the Kellow estate. The lucky new owner was David Powell (EAA 194005), 316 Prospect, West Des Moines, IA 50265 who purchased the plane in 1975. This Aeronca LC, NC17484, SIN 2060 was manufactured in 1937, one of the last of the low-wing series. The restoration was started the following winter and was a long, slow process with little progress being made until this past year. Dave credits John Houser of Aeronca, Inc. and Jim Thompson, Roberts, Illinois and owner of the only other Aeronca LC known to be flying, with providing

invaluable assistance in making the restoration as authen­ tic as he hoped for. A new instrument panel was made from scratch with a hand-painted wood grain finish per factory photos. The instruments are original except for three which he purch­ ased at the Fly Market at an Oshkosh Convention. The plane's interior duplicates the original. Dave did deviate from original in finishing the LC in that he used Ceconite and polyurethane paint which he hopes will make the plane easier to maintain. NC17 484 left the factory sporting a bright coat ofyellow with orange trim, but Dave, not liking either of those colors recalled seeing a beautiful red and maroon Beech G 17S Staggerwing at Ottumwa one year and chose those colors for his LC. Although not authentic, those colors compli­ ment the plane very well, which reinforces Dave's conten­ tion that the plane "looks like it should be red!" While searching for a replacement 90 hp Warner engine Dave located one in Sioux City, Iowa by following up on a tip . By coincidence the Warner was mounted on an Aeronca LC mount and was complete with oil tank! Dave's immediate good fortune ended there when the owner re­ fused to sell, but he would consider trading. The next three years were spent in negotiating a suc­ cessful trade and Dave finally acquired the engine in the summer of '82. The Warner appeared to be in good condi­

Attention to detail is evident here.

Dave Powell and his newly-restored low-wing Aeronca.

tion with new pistons, valves, guides and seats. The rods had been reamed for over-sized pins and bushings in the master rod . The engine was installed on the plane that winter and run ... but not for long as it had a nasty knock. Dave figured that a rod was bent or out of alignment and knock足 ing against a journal, so once again the Warner was disas足 sembled. At this point Dave called on Harold Lossner in nearby Des Moines for assistance. Harold is a well-known antiquer and an excellent engine man. All new rods, bushings and

master rod were installed, the engine re-assembled and run again just one month before the Aeronca Fly-In. As luck would have it, there was still a knocking noise but it sounded different and was at a slower rate, which made the cam area suspect. Pulling the case apart where it splits at the back, they found a snap ring missing on the camshaft. This allowed the cam to slip back and hit on the cam followers. The installation of a new snap ring solved the problem and the engine ran fine from that time on.

Mr. Cary Purdum, retired Aeronca employee whose favorite plane was the Model LC.

This view shows the beautiful sheet metal work and installation of the 90 hp Warner engine.

(Continued on Page 23)




The Seversky Pursuit will be featured next mC!nth.






Article Number 30 By Gene Chase [,"1:""""1:""'''9'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''"'WII·'' ",,''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''',"''''''",.'''''''''''''''""",U"",sn"""MS!""rln!:"W'"WW"",SC'm_,,'


The design of the all-metal Stout Sky Car was started by William B. Stout in 1929. The first drawings were made in chalk on a blackboard with ideas being formulated and then put down on paper. A glider was built along the lines of the craft and tested at Ford Airport during the summer of 1929. The Sky Car was announced in the April 1931 issue of Aero Digest but no mention was made of the plane actually being flown . The plane was to be a safe, easy-to-fly machine with a three wheel landing gear. Landings were to be made on the main gear and then "pushed over on the nose skid, placing the wing at a no-lift angle ." It was Mr. Stout's contention that ... "any normal , intelligent man or woman with vision good enough to drive a motor car and balance sufficient to walk a straight line should be able to learn to solo this plane within a maximum of four hours' time and be ready for local cross-country at the end of six to ten hours." The following is the description of the Stout All Metal Sky Car as presented on the back side of the Thompson poster: Made by the Stout Engineering Laboratories of Dear­ born, Michigan, the Stout Sky Car is designed as nearly as possible to be a fool proof, comfortable vehicle for the amateur aviator. It is an all metal , high wing monoplane with cabin seats (2).in tandem and with the motor at the rear - pusher type. The whole appearance of the plane is quite unusual. The wing span is exceptionally large for so small a plane, which makes for very low landing speed and stabil­

ity. The ailerons instead of being part-way out towards the ends of the wing, are actually the wing tips. In the customary sense, there is no fuselage extending back to the rudder and elevator, the cabin being cut off at the propeller and upon frame work extending back from there on. The engine is mounted back of the cabin to reduce noise and the passengers' hazard from fire , and rear wall of the cabin is heavily insulated for the same reasons. All of the cabin space lies forward ofthe wings, giving the passengers unobstructed view in every direction . • SPECIFICATIONS:

Wing span ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 ft. Length overall . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 24 ft . Wing area ... ..... . ... . .. . ...... . ... .. 168 sq. ft. (less ailerons) Aileron area ..... . . .... ... . . . .. ....... 20.5 sq. ft . Elevator area ..... . . . ....... . . . .. .... . 11 .3 sq. ft . Stabilizer area. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 10.7 sq . ft. Fin area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 11 .7 sq. ft. Rudder area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 6.5 sq. ft. Weight empty .. ... .... .. ........ .. ...... 9501bs. (with starter and battery) Useful load . ...... ....... ..... . .... ..... 475 lbs. Gross weight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 1425 lbs. Power (Rover engine) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 horsepower Wing loading . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 7.6 lbs. per sq. ft. Power loading . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 19 lbs. per h.p. Fuel capacity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 gallons Flying range .... . .... . . .. . ... . .......... 4 hours Oil capacity .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 2.5 gallons VINTAGE AIRPLANE 15

Piper J-3 Cubs on the Rising School of Aviation flight line, Bemidji, MN in 1942.


if -.1 CUB By Don Toeppen

(EAA 109869)

42 White Oak Circle

St. Charles, IL 60174

(Photos courtesy of the author)

Don Toeppen in 1942 wearing headgear for motorcycles and convertibles. 16 AUGUST 1983

Visibility was at least 100 miles under the clear, blue, September post frontal sky. I knew that upon reaching 1500 feet above ground, the air would be so smooth that the J-3 Cub would cruise hands off. Getting to 1500 feet took a bit of flying time; I'd be in the practice area off the southern tip of Lake Bemidji by the time I got there. From airport traffic pattern throughout the climb, we'd been flying a series of shallow banked 90° turns so as not to run into another aircraft that might be hidden by the nose. Not that such an event was likely; there were very few civilian planes flying in September 1942. Most of them were assigned to some military or military contract oper­ ation. Other than our four War Training Service Cubs, there was a lone Taylorcraft and a single Luscombe at the Bemidji, Minnesota Municipal Airport. They were both parked in the old WPA constructed hangar when I took off, and the other three Cubs were in their own practice areas. The plane and I were alone. Upon reaching 1500 AGL, I trimmed her up, picked out the likely forced landing spots; there were plenty of freshly cut grain fields available for that purpose. So I just flew straight and level a few minutes enjoying the view. Buster, my instructor, said there would never be a time to just sit and look, but the whole flight experience was so new and spine tingling, I just had to sneak a moment now and t hen to enjoy the total experience. Buster had told me to practice spins. I certainly was in no hurry to

get started with that! I had become accustomed to the nose high attitude we needed to get a clean stall, but still didn't like it. To me, the attitude for a spin entry was worse because of what was going to happen next! A fellow had to think about this for a minute or two; it wasn't something to rush right into. So I did a series of clearing turns. The other Cubs were so far away that they were not discernable without binoculars even in this northern Minnesota visi­ bility. Damn! Well, two more turns ought to do it. Uggghh. Time to stop procrastinating and do it. Carb heat on, throttle closed, and pull the nose up. Gad, it was quiet! Just the prop barely turning over, and the slip stream sound diminishing to a whisper. Seemed like the nose was 80 degrees above the horizon. The first nibble of the stall caused a little tremble to run through the airframe and I kicked in full left rudder, and held the stick full back. All hell broke loose. The nose fell off to the left and the ground filled the windshield. It certainly didn't stay still, but started pin wheeling around like the num­ bered gambling wheel in a carnival. Oops - I'm supposed to count the turns; where are we anyway? That has to be two turns, I think, let's recover! Full right rudder, then pop the stick forward . Holy smokes, Buster didn't turn upside down when he demonstrated spins! Ease her out, steady now. Slowly, slowly, ease the nose up. Might as well use this excess speed to get back to altitude. Now full throttle and climb her back to 1500 feet. After about thirty minutes, it didn't take quite as many clearing turns to screw up enough courage to kick her into a spin, and it seemed that I could actually count the roads as they spun under the nose. We even almost lined up with the road after recovery, and I had an understanding with the Cub about tucking under. The Cub promised not to go upside down if I didn't hold the stick full forward for such a long time. I kicked her into a final spin, recovered, and glided down to 500 feet AGL. There was just enough time for a rectangular pattern, "s" turns along U .S. Highway 2 back toward town and into the traffic pattern. Opposite the land­ ing point on downwind, carb heat on, throttle closed. The 65 Lycoming ticked over beautifully. Check for traffic, turn on base leg and clear the engine. Now check for traffic, turn on final and clear the engine. Aim for the point, and as the ground starts to fill the windshield, commence the flare, holding her off, bringing the stick back, back, until, when it is full back, the wheels kiss the sod. Three point! How long would it be until I got another squeeker like that? Not bad for 12 hours. Keep the stick back while taxiing into the wind. Left turn toward the hangar. Keep the stick back, and now the stick points into the wind coming from the right. Not much wind today, but Buster said to always taxi as if it were really howling, and when it did, the proper response would be automatic. "s" turn the ship so as to be able to see around the nose. After all, in 1942 there were very few tricycle gear aircraft. The B-24 and 25, a couple of fighters, the P-38 and 39, and who would ever by lucky enough to fly one of those? Now line up the wheels on the flight line and cut the mags. And thus it went for 40 hours which completed the Primary WTS course for our class, just before Thanksgiv­ ing, 1942. War Training Service, or WTS was a military adaption of a Civil Aeronautics Administration program known as the Civilian Pilot Training Program, or CPT. The object when our class started was to train us to be flying Sta ff Sargents, presumably as artillery observers. By the time we were graduated some ten months later, the goal had changed many times as the needs ofthe war effort dictated. But back to WTS Primary. The civilian course origi­ nally led to a private ticket. It consisted of a federally

Forest "Buster" Rising, Don's flight instructor at Bemidji.

funded cooperative effort between an educational institu­ tion and a fixed base operator. In this case, Bemidji State Teachers College and Rising School of Aviation were the principals involved. The impressively named flight school consisted of Buster Rising, Commercial Pilot and Flight Instructor who also had an Aircraft and Engine Mechanics ticket, his wife Lou who ran the paperwork and dispatch functions, and two employee flight instructors. Ground school was held at night at the College. We flew every flyable day, seven days a week, sun-up to sunset. Basically, ground school subjects were the same as they are today for the private ticket, except we had no radios or instruments to contend with . In fact, we never saw a needle, ball, or radios until we hit Cross Country WTS two courses later. As you might imagine, with seven students per instruc­ tor, and four airplanes total , we flew the planes so much that we saw several 100-hour inspections on each ship before the course was completed. That meant no flying for some of the students until the plane was back in service. With nothing else to do, and us wanting to get back in the air, we had a chance to help Buster with the inspections and repairs. It was a good chance to learn something else, like, "Hold that bolt still , dummy, or I'll never get this nut tightened. " Toward Thanksgiving it began to get quite cold. At night after the last flight, the oil would be drained from the engines and stored in large tin cans. In the morning the cans were placed on top of the oil stove that heated the dispatch/weather shack, the only heated area on the field other than Buster's house . When we were ready to fly, the hot oil was poured into the engines, and away we went. The flight curriculum was unusua l by today's sta n­ dards. It consisted of a series of maneuvers that had to be performed in a specific order. Thus, the instructor or check pilot could ride with a student ready for final check and never utter a word. Theoretically, every student in the country could follow this sequence without command. Needless to say, I do not remember the sequence, but the VINTAGE AIRPLANE 17

Waco UPF-7, NC174 flown by CAA inspector O. J . Kells out of the Fargo, NO office in 1942.

log book shows the following maneuvers were flown : A standard departure was made from the airport traffic pat­ tern, and the Cub flown to the practice area. The log shows the low work to have been rectangular course, "S" turns across a road, series of "8s," climbing turns to 1500 feet. Now for the high work: Series of turns, 720 steep turns, stalls, forward slip, 2 turn spins, spirals, gliding and glid­ ing turns, and coordination exercises. Somewhere during the series, there were ample opportunities to practice forced landings. Upon return to the field, we'd shoot 180 side or overhead approaches. After a couple of trips with the instructor, you knew just where to go to have plenty of good forced landing fields available, and just which roads to use for reference during the maneuvers. A guaran­ teed thumbs-up ride if you didn't foul up a series of man­ euvers. Back at the airport, those of us who were waiting to fly would take a model plane, draw lines in the sandy soil representing roads, and talk ourselves through the flight sequence. I suppose we would have washed out had we completely forgotten the sequence on the final check. My old log shows I transposed two of the maneuvers on the final check, but still passed. One other "skill" we picked up due to the small size of the school was that of weather observer. Bemidji was one of the many stations that reported weather every six hours. This information was taken, put into a code quite different from that used for sequence weather today, or even in that day. This was sent to the Weather Bureau by Western Union. Either Buster or Lou had to take these readings at 0000,0600, 1200 and 1800 every day. The only way for them to have a nigJ-.t out was for one of us to take the readings. It has now been 41 years since I did this; by now I might be a bit rusty. Our relationship with the town and college was differ­ ent than that of the usual student. Our schedule pre­ cluded complete assimilation into the student body. Addi­ tionally, most of us were older than the senior students though some of the younger members of our group struck up interesting relationships with the co-eds, as might be expected. We did enter my 1941 Ford convertible as a float in the homecoming parade, decoration courtesy of one of our class members, Bob Petersen, a commercial artist before Pearl Harbor. We took our breakfast in the college dining room . One 0


18 AUGUST 1983

morning, several of us were seated at a large, round table with some of the freshmen women, girls who had appa­ rently led a sheltered home life. Verdie Paulsen, a true woodsman who also was an experienced heavy equipment operator was with us. As the warm cereal was served, Ve1-die quipped, "Where is my warm beer?" The poor freshmen girls were visibly shaken, and even moved their chairs away from Verdie, as much as the limited space would permit. We arranged for our own sleeping quarters, usually one or two with a local family . It was my good fortune to obtain a room on the main street, Bemidji Blvd., with the Foley family. One of their sons had preceded me in WTS Primary and was at that time, flying Waco UPF-7s in secondary. My room was on the second floor of their bun­ galow. Though the quarters were comfortable, there was minimal space for clothing which required storing some things in my suitcase behind the attic dwarf wall . One Friday night, we were all going to a school dance after class. Following dinner I took a fresh white shirt from the suitcase, put on my suit and went to class. It was hot in the classroom that night. Soon I felt something moving under my shirtfront. Unobtrusively as possible, I located and extracted a small fly . A few minutes later, I felt another and the exercise was duplicated. Soon, it felt like my undershirt was alive! Exiting as gracefully as possible I rushed to the men's room and stripped to the waist. Somehow fly eggs had been layed in my clean shirt and the hot room plus my body temperature had been sufficient to start the hatching process. A good brushing of the "clean" shirt solved the problem. On yet another Friday night, Dr. Height who taught all navigation and math subjects was dressed in his hunt­ ing clothes when we assembled. Calling the class to order, he fixed "Downwind" with a stern look and said, "At 2100 I am meeting my companions to start on a weekend hunt­ ing trip. We have a great deal of ground to cover. I will not answer any damn fool questions anyone asks just to take up time." That was one of the shortest Friday night classes on record! On Sunday afternoon my closest friend in the class, Chuck O'Meara and I finished flying and went in the '41 Ford to his home ground, Cass Lake, some 18 miles from Bemidji. Chuck was an expert woodsman who had worked

Don's 1941 Ford Super Deluxe convertible served as the WTS float, transporting the queen in the 1942 Bemidji State Teachers College homecoming parade.

as a guide and mail boat pilot on the lake for most of his young life. As we walked the wooded shore path of the lake that fall day, he suddenly noted a movement in the path ahead of us. Quickly he picked up a stone, threw it and stunned a grouse twenty feet ahead of us. Before I could fully comprehend what he was up to, he had rushed ahead, grabbed the grouse, and wrung its neck. As a city boy with some knowledge of wilderness ways, it was only now I fully comprehended the lucky, successful hunting demonstration that had taken place before my eyes. On return to the campus, Chuck gave the bird to Dr. John Glas, the school business manager and WTS coordinator. A week later, Mrs. Glas invited Chuck and myself for a Sunday dinner of grouse, supplemented by enough other fowl to make a most enjoyable and welcome home-cooked meal for four . This was typical of the wonderful feeling that existed between our class members and the people of Bemidji. The most memorable event? My first solo, just before sunset on a beautiful fall afternoon. The J-3 is soloed from the rear seat. It doesn't establish any climb records when there are two of you on board, especially when you are both required to wear parachutes. The person in front acts like a sound insulator to a certain extent. Thus, the first solo takeoff will give the student some surprises. First, without the sound barrier, the engine noises are more clearly heard. But small matter; you are going to get to do this yourself! You go through the runup, clear the area for traffic, line up and open the throttle . She jumps into the air! The lighter load really makes a difference. The airport boundary sees you well into the air, and the crosswind turn is just barely outside the field. Opposite the point on downwind you apply carb heat, chop the throttle, and as the ship glides through the approach, the engine ticks over ever so nicely . You break the glide, hold her off until the stick is all the way back in your lap, and she touches down, three point! It will be a few hours before you duplicate such a well executed landing again. The funniest event? The day "Downwind" took off to the west in a light wind and , instead of doing his practice work, flew over to Ten Strike to buzz the school where his girlfriend taught. By the time he returned to the airport, we had a 1800 wind shift and the velocity had become quite brisk. He entered the pattern without looking at the wind sock. Only problem was that he flew across the far boun­

dary of the field some 200 feet in the air. His correction was nice, but even with the base leg over the shore of the lake, he was still airborne at the west boundary. By now two instructors had fired up two other Cubs, and had them headed into the east wind. As "Downwind" chopped the power, the first one took off to the east, right over the point he was using for touchdown - he thought. This didn't phase him; he just continued. As he turned final, the second instructor took off right at him. He got the message and after reversing his pattern, made a beautiful landing. He never did outlive the name of "Downwind". Final Check Ride? CAA Inspecftor D. J . Kells came in from the office at Fargo, North Dakota in a Waco UPF-7, NC174, a beautiful ship with a black fuselage and orange wings. His first check ride on the base? Me. All went well up to stalls. While trimming the aircraft, she stuck in the up position and wouldn't trim down. Kells tried to help by approaching a stall to unload the stabilizer, and trimming like mad, but that didn't work. Between the two of us, it was in full nose up position and seemed destined to stay there forever. Did you ever try flying a plane with the nose trimmed full up? It leads to stiff arms, and not very good straight and level flight. I was damn glad to get Piper Cub, NC35228 back on the flight line where Buster could re-ad­ just the trim cable tension! We were all home by Thanksgiving, awaiting our next assignment to WTS Secondary where we would fl y the wonderful UPF-7s. It would be after the war before we would have a chance to go back to Bemidji where a fine, new airport with paved runways replaced our sod field . Lou had passed away; Buster and the children had left. I never saw or heard from the man who had really started me in this wonderful industry. It has been so worthwhile. It would have been nice to tell him so. Editor's Note: After completing WTS training, Donald B. Toeppen was sent to Central Instructors School at Brooks and Randolph Fields in Texas and then to Spartan School ofAeronautics in Tulsa, Oklahoma where he served as an Army Primary Instructor in 1943 and 1944. In 1944 he was hired by United Airlines, making captain in 1947. When he retired in 1977 Don was Director of Flight Oper­ ations, based at Chicago's O'Hare Field. In retirement, Don continues to fly in single and twin Piper and Cessna aircraft as pilot, chiefpilot, and Director of Operations for three different Part 135 operators. • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 19


(Photo by Ken Sumney via Ted Koston)

This photo of the 1937 Stinson SR-9FD, NC18425, S/N .5715 was taken In 1940 at Pittsburgh, PA. It is currentl\( owned by J. J. Paul (EAA 36793, AlC 145), 14418 Skinner Road, Cypress, TX 77429.

By Edward E. Beatty (EAA 155741, Ale 6448) 10744 u.s. 27, So. 172 Ft. Wayne, IN 46816 When I received the May 1982 issue of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE the first thing that met my eyes when I slipped it from the envelope was the back cover. I felt a chill run through my body like I have seldom had . There it was .. . Stinson Reliant NC18425. This is the first airplane I was ever hired to work on. The date was in late May 1945 and I was 16 years old. Having soloed in October 1944 and being the proud possessor of nearly 20 hours of flying time I announced to 20 AUGUST 1983

my parents one day in April of 1945 that I was going to seek employment at the Smith Field Airport in Fort Wayne, Indiana. At the time I was just finishing my junior year in High School in Huntington, Indiana, about 25 miles southwest of Fort Wayne. They gave me little encouragement and told me not to be disappointed when I was turned down. However, as planned, the next Sunday morning I rose bright and early, pedalled my bike to the local airport, rented a plane and

flew to Smith Field to meet Mr. Ralph Bleke who was the owner and operator of Consolidated Aircraft Repair Ser­ vice . Arriving at Smith Field around 8 a .m. I sought out Mr. Bleke and introduced myself. Stating my desires and inten­ tions I was amazed when he asked me when I could start work. I gulped and said "just as soon as school lets out in May." We agreed on a starting date and I was hired . The flight home was one of the pleasant experiences of my life. I sang, shouted and rocked the plane all over the sky. The world was mine . I reported for work by commuting the 25 miles on a Greyhound Bus. I was somewhat late on the first day because I had to hitchhike from downtown Fort Wayne to the airport. In a few short days this problem was solved because I had met enough of the people at the field that getting a ride was easy. Walking into the shop I found an enormous pair of beautiful Stinson wings, ready to be recovered. My first job was to help recover the wings for 18425. I couldn't forget that number ifI tried. After the fabric , pinked tapes, 16 coats of clear dope, four coats of silver and all the sanding and masking of those numbers in preparations for the four coats of pigmented dope , they have been indelibly implanted in my brain. I loved every minute of it and even slept in the shop on a few occasions so I wouldn't have the expense of com­ muting to the airport on my day off. There was so much going on at that time I didn't want to miss a minute of it. I'm sure you know that Stinson produced a quality product and the workmanship put into the Reliant was a beauty to behold. Hand rubbed finishes were the order of the day and not to be outdone, we knocked ourselves out to equal or better the factory finish . We spent so many man hours sanding between coats of dope I don't know how we ever made any money on it. When the plane was finished you could not tell that pinked edge tapes had been applied because they were sanded down to blend in with the fabric. It was truly a proud moment the day we rolled her into the sunlight for the world to admire. In her red and black with silver piping trim she couldn't have looked better the day she rolled out of the factory . The owner of 18425 at the time was Homer Stockert who owned and operated a flying service at South Bend, Indiana. I cannot swear to the following, but this is the way it was told to me. Homer had been a pilot for Republic Aviation during the war years and at the time 18425 belonged to Republic. I'm pretty sure this is a fact because the plane was still carrying the Republic name on the fuselage when we started to work on it. With the war winding down Homer left Republic to return to his own business and he purch­ ased the plane from the company when he left them. I never had the opportunity to meet him personally but I was there the day he lifted 18425 into the sky for her test flight and then home to South Bend. That was the last time I ever saw either of them, but I'll never forget. Other memories were brought back when I read Randy Barnes' article about the Sky Romer in the January 1982 issue of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE. I have no personal knowledge of the airplane but many of the men associated with it and others included in the article played a large part in my aviation education during my years at Smith Field, and even before that in Huntington. To name a few . . . Bob McComb, Carl Buecker, Russell Hosler and Paul Hobrock. Although I can't say·that I really knew Paul Hobrock I did speak with him on numerous occasions when he would stop by our shop to visit. His home at that time was adjacent to the airport in a beautiful wooded area. And yes he did raise some prize-winning Palominos. We could see them every day through the shop windows.

Mr. Hobrock was highly regarded by many people around the field and naturally had many friends he enjoyed spending time with there when he had the time. He was a rather striking man who commanded respect just from his appearance but at the time I had no knowledge of his past experiences and contributions to aviation. Mr. Barnes' article filled a lot of gaps in my education about Fort Wayne's aviation history . In my two years at Smith Field I worked for three different companies. Shortly after completing the job on NC18425 , Mr. Bleke hired a well experienced mechanic who was working for another company on the field and as a result he was forced to let me go. Momentarily crushed I gathered up my things and walked across the ramp to the company who just lost a man. I was immediately hired and started to work the same day. A few months later this company went out of business. When it was rumored they were going to lock the doors I was approached by Mr. Fred Romy who was owner and operator ofInter-City Flying Service who asked ifI would be interested in working for him. I was, and did as soon as the key was turned. While working for Inter-City I met Bob McComb and Carl Buecker. By this time I knew nearly everyone on the field . Bob was in and out a lot since he was running the airport at Decatur, Indiana. Carl was there a lot in the evenings and on weekends since during the day he was an engineer for the Magnavox Corporation . A few years hence Bob became one of my advanced instructors, and we flew several hours together. But that's another story. Bob McComb was a great aerobatic pilot and he per­ formed in a wide variety of aircraft. At the time I first met him he had a surplus Navy N3N which he had painted up in a fancy red and white paint job. Bob was more or less free-lancing air show work at the time and had two young men, Gene Zerkel and Don Cody, working with him . In June 1946 we were plannmg an air show at Smith Field with Bob as the featured performer. Gene and Don were wing riders and assisted Bob with other parts of his show . Bob had decided to let Don, who was a Marine veteran of World War II and a paratrooper, do an act standing on the top wing of the plane while Bob performed all the usual air show maneuvers. Of course this is done regularly now but at the time I'm not sure it had ever been done. Of course this would require a special platform and harness to be mounted on the top wing in order for Don to be able to stand up. Bob brought the airplane to us and asked my shop boss, Vince Parker, if he could rig up something that would be safe. Vince said he thought he could, so we rolled the ship into the shop and went to work. In a couple of days Vince had rigged up a platform with some stirrups on it and some cables which fastened to a parachute harness. Don came out and tried it on for size and said he was satisfied it would work, so on with the show . But it was not to be. About three days before the show was to take place a stunt man from around Chicago, I believe, showed up unannounced. Maybe Bob had con­ tacted him and knew of his arrival but no one else seemed to. His name was Ace Lillard. When he discovered what Bob and Don had planned he convinced Bob it was too dangerous and the act was scratched from the program. Don was so mad he was livid and for a while we thought there might be a fight but Bob got them calmed down and things cooled a bit. The day of the show came and the weather was perfect. Everything went as planned; Gene and Don did their wing riding act, Don made a parachute jump and things were all set for the last act of the show. Ace Lillard was to do a free fall from the wing of the N3N, sans parachute, and come to a stop at the end of a rope attached to the bottom VINTAGE AIRPLANE 21

of the plane. Then he was to climb back up the rope and into the plane. Sensational! They took ofT, flew past the crowd with Ace walking around on the wings and crawling all over the plane. Suddenly he fell, the crowd gasped, and then he hit the end of the rope and everyone breathed a sigh of relief. Now the' real show began. Ace had used a nylon rope which was looped a round his ankle and when he hit the end of the rope the shock was greater than he had anticipated and he was dazed. Also he had not allowed for the slickness of the nylon rope which required more than normal strength to climb back up. So there he hung, weakened from the shock , which had already sapped his strength, getting weaker from hanging head down and he had no parachute. I don't know whether Bob could see him or not but I doubt it. Obviously when he did not climb back into the plane in a reasonable period Bob knew something was wrong. Down on the ground we didn't realize at first what was going on. After ten or fifteen minutes of circling over the field with the action at the end of the rope becoming less and less it was obvious to us that Ace was in deep trouble. Some quick decisions were made and shortly Dick Teeple took ofT in a Fairchild PT-19 with Gene Racht in the back cockpit. Gene was an old-time parachute jumper and he was carrying an extra chute and a knife with him. The plan was to try and come up under Ace, attempt to hand him the chute and the knife then get out of the way so he could cut himself free . It might have worked but just as they got under him the Fairchild slipped ahead and about that time they hit a pretty healthy updraft. Bad deal! The Fairchild's rudder went right up into the N3N's prop. Now things were really getting hairy. Dick was an outstanding pilot and was able to get the Fairchild back on the ground without further incident but Ace was still up there in trouble . It was decided to try it once more but the only plane available was a Vultee BT-13. Being quite a bit faster than the Fairchild it was not the best plane for the job but something had to be done fast, so away they went. This time Al Schertz was at the controls. It didn't work. Al just could not get the speeds coordinated so that contact could be made. Next a convertible was located and Bob was signaled to attempt lowering Ace into the car. Smith Field had 3300-foot runways and after two unsuccessful attempts it was decided to get a police escort across town to Baer Field. This was a military field at the time and had 6500-foot runways. They signaled to Bob and he headed south which took him directly across town. Coming up over the city Bob's engine suddenly started heating up and running rough. Contact with the Fair­ child's rudder had bent the prop and the results of that were taking their toll . Bob immediately turned back to Smith Field making a long, agonizingly slow approach and in a shallow slip. By slipping he could see Ace below him. When Ace hit the ground Bob chopped the power, the plane hit in a three-point attitude and Bob tromped on the brake and rudder, spinning the tail around and preventing it from hitting Ace. We were sure Ace was dead. The ambulance was stand­ ing by and they quickly loaded him into it and headed for the hospital. He was not dead but no one knew his condi­ tion. Bob had done the best job anyone could have under the worst possible circumstances. He was completely wrung out and didn't seem to even be aware of the praises being heaped upon him. What a show, and would you believe Ace Lillard was back at the airport within two hours wearing only a couple of Band-Aids? He was as cocky as ever without even a broken bone! I might not be able to write a book on Russel Hosler but I could probably come up with a pretty lengthy story. As mentioned by Mr. Barnes in his article, Russ did design 22 AUGUST 1983

and build an unsuccessful race plane in the late 30s. It was called the "Hosler Fury". The Fury was an extremely advanced design for its day and might have flown given enough space to get ofT the ground . The plane had a pencil-like fuselage of about 28 feet in length with the cockpit faired into it similar to Frank Hawks' "Time Flies". There was no break in the top contour of the fuselage whatsoever. Forward visibility was nil. To aid in takeofT and landing, the cockpit was enclosed in Plexiglas which extended quite a ways forward of the instrument panel. A small hatch opened in the top of the cockpit and the pilot's seat had a hydraulic hand pump which enabled him to raise his head up through the hatch during ground operations. The wing was nearly square in plan form and was roughly 12 feet long by about 11 feet wide. At its thickest point it was probably no more than three inches thick and the airfoil was symmetrical. The leading edge was like a razor and great care had to be taken when walking around the plane lest you sufTer severe cuts. The wing sat well forward of the cockpit and was mounted atop the fuselage. The landing gear was retractable and folded back and into wells in the side of the fuselage . Power was provided by a 600 hp Curtiss Conqueror engine with a Hamilton Standard ground adjustable propeller. The entire front end of the plane was radiator with the prop shaft extending through the lower portion ofit. Construction of the fuselage was of Chromoly tubing with wood formers. The rest of the airframe was of wood construction. The entire plane was covered with plywood skin which was covered with fabric and the resulting finish was slick as glass. The plane was painted bright vermillion with black numbers with the name painted on it in bright yellow. I'm not sure exactly what year the Fury was completed but it was finished at Smith Field. I learned many years later that original construction was started at Floyd Ben­ nett Field in New York, but again, that is another story. Completion had to have been around 1938 or 1939 and the first attempts to fly it were at Smith Field. I was not there so again I have to go on what I have been told concerning the test attempts. Naturally the airplane was quite heavy, sporting ex­ tremely small wheels and brakes. With only 3300 feet of runway to work with Russ would get rolling pretty well but the plane was in no way ready to fly so he would have to abort the takeofT. With all the weight on the small tires he would burn them up every time he got on the binders. He tried to get permission to test it at Baer Field, but being a military field the brass said no. Finally giving up Russ transported the Fury to Hun­ tington and stored it in his sister's barn which was .only a few blocks from where I lived. He continued to work on it from time to time in between rebuilding some other planes and I spent many summer afternoons in his shop trying to get little odd jobs just to be able to be around him and his planes. I was about 11 or 12 at the time. Russ tolerated me better than many others would have and did give me things to do which made me feel important. I think it was during the winter of 1940-41 that Russ built a pair of skis for the plane and hauled it up to lake Wawasee which is about 40 miles north of Huntington. Again I was not there, but it was reported to the Hun­ tington Herald Press that the Fury had lifted ofT the ice but had to be landed immediately in order to get it stopped before it ran out oflake. Lake Wawasee is the largest lake in Indiana and has to be five or six miles across. The plane was brought back to Huntington, stored in a barn and that is the last I ever saw of it. World War II started and Russ left Huntington, repor­ tedly to fly for the RCAF Ferry Command. I didn't see him again until 1958.

In 1948 I attended the Cleveland Air Races. Among the entries was a Bell P-63 flown by Bob Eucher. The plane was painted all black and on the nose, in bright yellow, was the name Hosler. I wondered about it at the time but could find no one in the crowd who could verify the name of the owner. The plane won the Sohio Trophy Race that year and was doing pretty well in the Thompson when it developed engine problems and had to drop out. In 1957 through 1960 the National Air Races were held at Ft. Wayne, consisting only of Formula One Racers. At the race in 1958 I bumped into Russ at the airport restaur­ ant. This was the first time we had seen each other in nearly seventeen years. I had changed a whole lot more than Russ had and naturally I had to tell him who I was. It was quite a reunion and I had an opportunity to ask him a lot of questions. First, was it his P-63 that raced in Cleveland ten years earlier? Yes it was. Second, what ever happened to the Fury? Russ told me that shortly after the turn of the decade (1950) he hit a real bad snag in his business and went bankrupt. During this period the "Fury" and the P-63 were tied down at the Cleveland Airport. One day he got a letter from the airport management telling him he was behind in his tie down rental fees and until the money was paid the planes were being im­ pounded. Not having the money at the time there was nothing to do but let them impound the planes. Quite some time later things took a turn for the better and Russ went to the airport to reclaim his property. According to him, no one knew where they were or what had happened to·

them. He never saw either of them again. That was the last time I saw Russ and I read where he passed away a couple of years ago in a small town about twenty miles north of Fort Wayne. Until then I didn't know he had returned to the area. Getting back to the Hosler Fury, I was talking with the man in charge of the American Air Racing Society display at Oshkosh '75 and I asked if he had ever heard of Russ Hosler. He thought a moment and then said he was certain they had information on him. We compared notes for several minutes and then I became aware that someone else had joined us and was waiting for a lull in the conversation in order to ask a question. He introduced himself as Nick D'Apuzzo. I recog­ nized the name immediately. Then he asked the attendant if he had ever heard of an old time race pilot by the name of Russ Hosler. I thought the man was going to have a stroke! He looked at me then back at Nick and said, "I don't believe this. A hundred thousand people here and the only two persons I have talked with in the past hour both walk up and ask me about the same pilot. I just don't believe it." Nick and I introduced ourselves and then he told me he had worked with Russ at Floyd Bennett Field on the initial construction of the Fury. Of course we compared a lot of other information but that was the first I had ever known that fact about Russ and his Fury. I wonder what the odds ofsomething like that happening at Oshkosh are?


Among the many admirers of the LC at the Aeronca Fly-In were two Aeronca retirees, one who came to the airport that day because he heard there was a Low-Wing on display, and the other because the LC was his favorite plane and he worked in the sheet metal shop making the fairings and cowlings for LCs. He commented that all the sheet metal work on the LCs was hand made which meant that like pieces weren't interchangeable from one plane to another. The latter gentleman was 81-year-old Cary Purdum who worked for Aeronca 36 1/2 years, starting in Cincinnati on 3/12/31 in final assembly of Aeronca C-3s, then in the sheet metal shop making gas tanks and ailerons. Mr. Purdum carefully inspected Dave's Aeronca LC then put his stamp of approval on the sheet metal work . This pleased Dave because all the metal work was new on NC17484. Mr. Purdum wasn't the only one who approved of Dave and Phyllis Powell's Aeronca LC because the judges named it the Grand Champion Classic Antique at the First Na­ tional Aeronca Clubs of America Fly-In ... a fitting reward for an outstanding restoration . The following specifications and performance data for the Aeronca LC are from Juptner's "U.S. Civil Aircraft ­ Volume 7," page 58. 36' 0" Wing span 22'4" Length 7' 0" Height Empty wt. 10341bs. Gross wt. 16801bs. 123 mph Max speed Cruising speed (1900 rpm) 108 mph Landing speed (with drag-flap) 48 mph 28 gal. Gas cap. 3 gal. Oil cap. Cruising range 520 mph Price at factory $3275.

(Continued from Page 13)

The beautiful Hamilton Standard ground adjustible prop has been with the plane for at least 20 years ... Harold remembers it being on NC17484 when Shorty Kellow first owned it in 1962. Dave's only previous experience flying an LC was about 30 minutes with Jim Thompson in the latter's plane. The two Aeroncas are somewhat different in that Jim's has a later model tailwheel installation, being at the rear of the fuselage while Dave's is a full swivel installation mounted further forward . Before making the first flight in his new pride and joy, Dave taxied it around quite a while to get the feel of it, then took off and climbed to 5,000 feet to start breaking in the engine in the cooler air. He was worried that the LC might be "squirrelly" on landing, but on his first attempt the plane was down before he knew it, with no directional control problems. This pleased him greatly, but he does admit the forward visibil­ ity leaves a lot to be desired. Dave's wife, Phyllis is as fond of the LC as he is and she enjoys flying in it. The Warner does throw out a little oil and grease and to date Phyllis has spent more time cleaning the plane than riding in it. She accompanied Dave on the six-hour flight from home to the Aeronca Fly-In at Middletown, Ohio. Although they wouldn't have had to refuel twice, they landed at Marion County Airport in Illinois and again at Alexandria, Indiana because it was the maiden voyage away from home port and Dave wanted to inspect the plane carefully. Dave is completely satisfied with the LC but does hope to improve the ineffective braking system before flying much more. The wheels are 18 x 8-3 with mechanical brakes and he would consider installing hydraulic brakes, but would prefer not to .


• clKomenf In Jime By Al Wheeler

(EAA 64433, Ale 5519)

525 Kumulani Drive

Kihei, HI 96753

As the chill hush of the winter evening embraced the rolling Connecticut countryside a tousle-haired young man and his father sat quietly reading in a comfortable farm­ house kitchen. Suddenly, the boy stirred, tilting his head as though to better hear some distant sound. Then, eyes alight with excitement, he rushed to the door shouting, "Dad, it's him, it's him!" The older man , aroused from his thoughts, nodded, and taking a five cell flashlight from a convenient hook next to the door, followed his son out into the chill night. Pausing there to listen , he too heard the faint throb of a J-5 Wright. Glancing at his watch, he nodded again, saying, "And right on time too, it's 9:15." He followed the boy, now racing to the edge of a broad meadow next to the sprawling farmhouse. There they paused, peering intently in the direction of sound. Seconds later the boy pointed skyward saying, "I see him, Dad," as pinpoints ofred and green became visible, followed by the unmistakable torch of blue exhaust bet­ ween them. As the aircraft approached the father raised the heavy flashlight, sighted over its long body and pressed the switch, one - two - three pause and one - two . He lowered the light and watched the aircraft lights, now brighter as it closed the distance between them. Again he raised the light and flashed his signal, lowered it, and waited . Suddenly both father and son shouted excitedly as two pinpoints of white broke the darkness below the winking navigation lights. One - two - three pause one - two they flashed . "He saw us," the lad exclaimed as the aircraft passed overhead, now with only the blue exhaust visible .

CALENDAR OF EVENTS AUGUST 5-7 - SHELTON, WASHINGTON - Third Annual Antique , Classic and Warbird Fly· ln at Sanderson Field. Sponsored by Puget Sound Antique Airplane Club, EAA NC Chapter 9. Public display, dinner Saturday evening . Fly·a·way Breakfast Sunday. Contact Pete Bowers, 10458 16th Ave . So., Seattle, WA 98168 , 2061242·2582. AUGUST 5-7 - THREE FORKS, MONTANA - 6th Annual Montana Antique Airplane Assoc. Fly· ln. Contact Bud Hall at 4061586·3933. AUGUST 8-12 - FOND DU LAC , WISCONSIN - EAA lAC International Aerobatic Championships . For information contact EAA, P.O. Box 229, Hales Corners , WI 53130 . 4141425·4860. AUGUST 21 - WEEDSPORT, NEW YORK - Antique , Classic and Homebuilt Fly·fn sponsored by EAA Chapter 486 at Whitfords Airport. Pancake breakfast and air show. Contact Herb Livingston, 1257 Gallagher Rd . · B, Baldwinsville, NY 13027. AUGUST 26-28 - TULSA, OKLAHOMA - Annual EAA Chapter 10 Fly· ln at Tulsa Downtown Airpark. Contact LeRoy Opdyke , 13535 N. 155 E. Ave ., Collinsville, OK 74021 , 9181371 ·5770 . 24 AUGUST 1983

Douglas M-2 mail plane as flown on the early Los Angeles to Salt Lake City route. Painting by Charles Hubbell.

As the white tail light appeared, blending itself with the bright stars, the boy spoke, "Engine sure sounds good, doesn't it Dad?" The older man , listening, nodded, "Yup, sure does. But I'll bet he's cold up there tonight." They stood silently watching and listening as the single light and the drone of the engine were slowly swallowed by the northern sky. Turning, they walked back to the house, each now aware of the night chill and each imagining what it might be like to be the lone aviator. High in the night sky, someone who, huddled in a cold cockpit, must watch nightly for his pinpoint of light, and seeing it, flash back his recognition . Twin rays of friendship probing the dark night, uniting for brief minutes the earthbound and the aviator. A momentary contact between friends and soon lost, one swallowed by the dark earth and the other slowly blending with the twinkling stars. The time, the early 1930s, in the early days of the New York to Boston mail flights . Lone aviators braved the night skies in open cockpit Pitcairns and Boeings. Pioneers they were , blazing the invisible routes of the early air mail , invisible but for the flashing beacon lights dotting the rolling countryside and the tiny pinpoints of light along the route, friendly markers they, some flashing a code, others just winking on and ofT as to say, "Hi up there, hope all is well ." Fifty years later on a sunny California afternoon , a man, still tousle-haired, listened intently to the exhaust note of his steeply climbing Pitts Special and remembering, murmured half aloud, "Engine sure sounds good, doesn't it Dad?" •

SEPTEMBER 1-5 - TULLAHOMA, TENNESSEE - 3rd Annual Ole South Fly·ln at Parish Aerodrome, Soesbe·Martin Field. Sponsored by Tennessee Valley Sport Aviation Association , Inc. For information contact Jimmy Snyder, 5315 Ringgold Road , Chattanooga , TN 37412, 6151894-7957. SEPTEMBER 16-18 - RENO , NEVADA - Reno National Championship Air Races at Stead Airfield . Qualifying September 13-15. Airshow. Contact Greater Reno-Sparks Chamber of Commerce , P.O. Box 3499, Reno, NV 89505 . 7021786-3030. SEPTEMBER 17-18 - BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - 14th Annual EAA East Coast Fly-In at Glenn L. Martin State Airport. Sponsored by East Coast EAA Chapters . Show aircraft, static displays, flea market, forums, aerobatic demonstration, pancake breakfast, Saturday chicken barbeque . Contact Jim Eggleston, 2602 Elnora St. , Wheaton , MD 20902, 301 1933-0314 . SEPTEMBER 23-25 - TAHLEQUAH , OKLAHOMA - 1982 Tulsa Fly-In at Tahlequah Municipal Airport. Sponsored by Tulsa chapters of lAC, N C , UL and AAA. For information contact Charles W. Harris, 119 East 4th St. , Tulsa, OK 74103 , 9181585-1591 . OCTOBER 6-9 - EFFINGHAM, ILLINOIS - International Cessna 120 /140 Association , Inc. Annual Convention and Fly-In at Effingham County Memo­ rial Airport . For information contact AI Hourigan, 839 N. 6th St. , Vandalia, IL 62471,6181283-0320. OCTOBER 14-16 - CAMDEN , SOUTH CAROLINA - EAA Antiquel Classic Chapter 3 Fly-In. Antiques, Classics and Homebuilts welcome . Contact Geneva McKiernan, 5301 Finsbury Place , Charlotte , NC 27211 .

MYSTERY PLANE By George Hardie Lightplane amphibians have al­ ways been a challenge to airplane de­ signers. This one appeared in the period just before we became involved in World War II. The photo was sub­ mitted by member Cedric Galloway of Hesperia , California, and is from the John Vasey collection. Identification of the airplane is not as it appears . Full details will be published in the November 1983 issue of The VIN­ TAGE AIRPLANE. (We have decided to extend the publication of the answers to the column by one month because of lead time required for copy for each issue.)








The Mystery Plane that appeared in the June 1983 issue of The VIN­ TAGE AIRPLANE is a Brown-Young BY-I , license number NX13987 , built in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1936. Standing in front of the airplane is Willis Brown, President ofthe company, who in 1926 founded Mid-Continent Air­ craft Corp. which later became Spar­ tan. The airplane was designed by Dick Young and had a metal fuselage and wood and fabric wings. It was powered by a 285 hp Jacobs engine. George Goodhead furnished the photo and information. Although details vary somewhat, a correct answer to the June Mystery Plane follows : Dear George: The Mystery Plane in the June 1983 issue of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE is the Columbia BY-I , powered by a Jacobs L-4 of225 hp. (I believe the BY stood for Brown-Young! ) I'll be pleased to read further details on this one-of-a-kind aircraft as I've never read anything on it since I photographed it on 10/18/36 on the ramp at Spartan School of Aeronau­ tics at Tulsa, Oklahoma. I was going

cross country via bus when I stopped for an hour's visit at the airport. Sincerely, Emil Strasser (EAA 1069, A /C 3289) 4464 W. 115th St. Hawthorne, CA 90250 A correct response was also received from Joe Tarafas (EAA 49351 , A /C 5245) of Bethlehem, PA.



LEITERS TO THE EDITOR Dear Gene: I would like to point out a goof in the A. C. "Charlie" Miller story in the May 1983 issue of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE. The photos of the Douglas DF-151 and Dol­ phin on pages 11 and 12 obviously are switched. The prototype DC-4 had DC-3 shaped wings as did the B-18, B-23 and B-19 bombers. Speaking of the XB-19, the photo on page 13 was on the cover of the July 12, 1941 issue of Collier Magazine. I picked this up for a buck at the library a few years back

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EAA P.O. Box 229

Hales Corners, WI 53130

Phone 414/425-4860

Include payment with arder - Wisc. residents add 5% sales tax

Allaw 4-6 weeks far delivery

(Continued on Page 26) VINTAGE AIRPLANE 25



(Continued from Page 25)

when they were clearing out some old material. Th is magazine is dated six weeks before I was born . The B-19 was slated for the proposed Air Corps Museum but with foot-dragging, pressure from some scrap dealers, and non-caring military officers, the plane was cut up. This would be a splendid exhibit at the Air Force Museum if it were still around. Sincerely, John Carter (EAA 41067, A/C 180) 1403 2nd Avenue E . Bradenton, FL 33508



1929, 1930. 1931



ea .


EAA Aviation Foundation, Inc. Box 469 Hales Corners, WI 53130 Allow 4-6 Weeks For Delivery

Wisconsin Residents Include 4% Sales Tax

Regular type, 45c per word; Bold Face, 50c per word; ALL CAPS, 55c per word. Rate covers one insertion, one issue; minimum charge, $7.00. Classified ads payable in advance, cash with order . Send ad with payment to Advertising Department, TIu! VINTAGE AIR­ PLANE, P.O. Box 229, Hales Comers, WI 53130.

ACRO SPORT - Single place biplane capable of un­ limited aerobatics. 23 sheets of clear, easy to follow plans, includes nearly 100 isometrical drawings, photos and exploded views. Complete parts and materials list. Full size wing drawings. Plans plus 88 page Builder's Manual - $60.00. Info Pack - $4.00. Super Acro Sport Wing Drawing - $15.00. Send check or money order to: ACRO SPORT, INC., Box 462, Hales Corners, WI 53130. 414/ 425-4860. ACRO II - The new 2-place aerobatic trainer and sport biplane. 20 pages of easy to follow, detailed plans. Com­ plete with isometric drawings, photos, exploded views. Plans - $85.00. Info Pac - $4.00. Send check or money order to: ACRO SPORT, INC., P.O. Box 462 , Hales Cor­ ners, WI 53130. 414/425-4860. POBER PIXIE - VW powered parasol - unlimited in low, cost pleasure flying. Big, roomy cockpit for the over six foot pilot. VW power insures hard to beat 3 1/2 gph at cruise setting. 15 large instruction sheets. Plans - $45.00. Info Pack - $4.00. Send check or money order to: ACRO SPORT, INC., Box 462, Hales Corners, WI 53130. 414/ 425-4860.

Go a ntique on ground and in the air: 1926 Std. 6 Buick Sedan fully restored. AACA Senior and Preservation Awards. $15,000. M. J. Shelton, 1567 Bartram Way, El Cajon, CA 92021. 619/444-2323.


WANTED: PARTS, TOOLS, MANUALS, TECH. ORDERS, SERVICE BULLETINS FOR EARLY WRIGHT 1820 F SERIES, F-50 SERIES, MILITARY -04, -78, -17, -19, -20, -25, -30, -33, -37 & -75. ODER, 13102 DAYWOOD DRIVE, HOUSTON, TEXAS n038. 713/445-33n.


DGA 15P, excellent shape, recent paint and fabric, good wood, recent top overhaul and backcase replacement on engine. Call Jack Braden, 316/663-4741 office, or 316/662-8756 home .



• Membership in the Experimental Aircraft Association . Inc. is $25.00 for one year. $48.00 for 2 years and $69.00 for 3 years . All include 12 issues of Sport Aviation per year. Junior Membership (under 19 years of age) is available at $15.00 annually. Family Membership is available for an additional $10.00 annually. • EAA Member - $18.00. Includes one year membership in EAA Antique-Classic Division , 12 monthly issues of The Vintage Airplane and membership card. Applicant must be a current EAA member and must give EAA membership number. • Non-EAA Member - $28.00. Includes one year membership in the EAA Antique-Classic Division , 12 monthly issues of The Vintage Airplane, one year membership in the EAA and separate membership cards. Sport Aviation not included. • Membership in the Interna tional Aerobatic Club, Inc. is $20.00 annually which includes 12 issues of Sport Aerobatics. All lAC members are required to be members of EAA. • Membership in the Warbirds of America, Inc. is $25.00 per year, which includes a subscription to Warbirds Newsletter. Warbird members are required to be members of EAA. • Membership in the EAA Ultralight Assn . is $25.00 per year which includes the Ultralight publication ($15 .D? additional/or Sport Aviation magazine). For current EAA members only, $15.00, which includes UltralIght publIcatIOn . • FOREIGN MEMBERSHIPS: Please submit your remittance with a check or draft drawn on a United States bank payable in United States dollars or an international postal money order similarly drawn .




P.O. BOX 229 - HALES CORNERS, WI 53130 - PHONE (414) 425-4860


26 AUGUST 1983



WL()~~ ~l?A AVIATI()~


Jacket - unlined tan poplin with gold and white braid trim. Knit waist and cuffs, zipper front and slash pockets. Antique / Classic logo patch on chest. Sizes - XS through XL . . ...... $28.95 ppd Cap - pale gold mesh with contrasting blue bill , trimmed with gold braid. Antique/Classic logo patch on crown of cap. Sizes - M and L (adjustable rear band) . . . . . $ 6.25 ppd Antlque/CIa.slc Patche. Large - 4Vi' across ....... . .... $ 1.75 ppd $ 1.75 ppd Small - 3V4' across ...... AntIque/Cla.slc Decal. ­ 4" across (shown left) . . ...... $ .75 ppd Available Back I..ue. of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE

1973 - March through December

1974 - All are available

1975 - All are available

1976 - February through April , August through December

19n - January through June, August through December

1978 - January through March, August, October through Decem ber

1979 - All are available

1980 - January, March through July, September through December

1981 - . All are available 1982 - February, May through December 1983 - January through July Per Issue .... ......... . .. . . ..... $1.25 rpd

Lindbergh Commemorative Issue (July 19n) . . ...... $ 1.50 ppd

Classic owners! Interior looking shabby?


Finish it right with an airtex interior

7 Send check to :

EM Antlque/Claaslc Dtvl.ion, Inc. P.O. Box 229, Hale. Comera, WI 53130 Allow 4-6 Weeks tor Delivery Wisconsin Residents Include 5% Sales Tax

WAR BIRDS IN WALNUT Miniature Scale Replicas of Your Favorite Military Aircraft from Yesteryear to Today, Meticulously Handcrafted in American Black Walnut. A Truly Unique Desk Set with Matching Pen and Gold­ tone I.D. Plate for Gift, Award or Flying Event Trophy. Planes Can be Pedestal Mounted Depicting "In-Flight," or Base Mounted to Depict a " Landed" Attitude.

Complete interior assemblies tor do-it-yourself installation.

Custom Quality at economical prices .

• •

Cushion upholstery sets Wall panel sets • Headliners • Carpet sets • Baggage compartment sets • Firewall covers • Seat Slings • Recover envelopes and dopes

Free Catalog of complete produc t line. Fabric Selection Guide showing actual sample colors and styles of materials: $3.00.

Qlretex products~

.,;r inc.

259 Lower Morrisville Rd., Dept. VA Fallsington, PA 19054 (215) 295-4115

For FREE Color Brochure with Price List and Full Details: WRITE or PHONE

PLANE PEOPLE 2017 Fi e idcres l Court So. Salem . Oregon 97306

(503) 370-9806 VINTAGE AIRPLANE 27

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