Page 1

STRAIGHT Chairman - George York - 419/429­ 4378 George is in charge of all categories in the classic class.


by Espie "Butch" Joyce

T his month, I would like to bring you up to date on our planned activities for EAA Oshkosh '89. Our Conven­ tion theme this year is "From Jennies to Jets." Ken Hyde of Warrenton , Virginia has started a project, "Jennies to Osh­ kosh '89." He is contacting as many Jenny owners as possible to have them bring their aircraft to the Convention. The latest report is that he has commit­ ments from several people. He is hop­ ing for a good group and has been working very hard to transport these aircraft . If you feel that you can be of help, please contact him at 703/347­ 1909. Wouldn't it be great to have six or more Jennies in the air at one time?

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC PICNIC Chairman - Steve Nesse - 507/373­ 1674 This activity will be held on Sunday evening at 7:00 pm at the EAA Nature Center. Tickets will be on sale at An­ tique/Classic headquarters and should be purchased by 6:00 pm Saturday . We plan on having the Jenny owners and pilots as our honored guests during this time .

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC TYPE CLUB HEADQUARTERS Chairman - Joe Dickey - 812/342­ 6878 We invite all the type clubs to set up their headquarters in this area. It serves as a great gathering spot for these clubs.

Chairman - John Berendt - 507/ 263-2414 John has put together a very good program with qualified individuals. This program will be presented over the Convention week . Please check the program for the schedule.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC INFORMA TION BOOTH Chairman - Bob Brauer - 3121779­ 2105 This booth is outside of the A/C Headquarters . AlC chapter people should check in with Bob. Any infor­ mation on the Convention and mem­ bership can be found there .

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC PARKING Chairman - Art Morgan - 414/442­ 3631 Type clubs wishing to park together should contact Art directly , well in ad­ vance of the Convention .

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC HEADQUARTERS Chairman - Kate Morgan - 414/442­ 3631 This is the center of activity in the A/C area . These ladies can assist you with most needs you have. Stop by and pick up your Convention button.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC PHOTO CONTEST Chairman - Jack McCarthy - 317/ 371-1290 The sixth annual Antique/Classic Amateur Photo Contest will be held during EAA Oshkosh '89. All con­ testants must register at the Antique/ Classic Headquarters.



Chairman - Bob Wallace - 301/686­ 3279 Their headquarters is located behind the Antique/Classic headquarters. You should stop by this area and meet these people who lived part of our hi story in aviation.

Chairman - George Meade - 414/228­ 7701 This area is manned by gentlemen with a great deal of experience and background . They will be displaying and working on a number of projects . Please stop by with your technical problems . Maybe they can help.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC AIRCRAFT AWARDS Chairman - Dale Gustafson - 317/ 293-4430 Dale is in charge of all categories in the antique class . 2 MAY 1989

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC INTERVIEW CIRCLE Chairman - Charlie Harris - 9181742­ 7311 We will have two interviews per day


in front of the Antique/Classic Head­ quarters. If you would like to have your aircraft and experiences included, please contact Charlie so that he might be able to include you in his schedule.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC PARADE OF FLIGHT Chairman - Phil Coulson - 615/624­ 6490 This event will take place on Mon­ day of the Convention as part of the main airshow. The briefing will be held at I :00 pm at the A/C Headquar­ ters. Phil would like as many as possi­ ble to contact him in advance if you would like to fly in this show.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC PARTICIPANT PLAQUE Chairman - Jack Copeland - 508/336­ 7245 The Antique/Classic Division will present to the owner of each registered aircraft, a recognition plaque with a color photo of the aircraft parked at Oshkosh. Please register your aircraft as soon as possible after you are parked as this will speed up the procedure to present you with your plaque .

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC FLY-OUT Chairman - Bob Lumley - 4141255­ 6832 This activity is enjoyed by all who participate. This will be our sixth an­ nual fly-out. No need to register, but briefing will be held at the A/C Head­ quarters at 7 :00 am on Tuesday . De­ partures will be at 8:00 - 8:30 am and returning 1:30 - 2:00 pm in time for the airshow.

ANTIQUE/CLASSIC RIVERBOAT CRUISE Chairman - Jeannie Hill - 815/943­ 7205 There are a limited number of seats for this cruise, therefore you need to contact Jeannie in advance for your tickets. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the Antique/Classic Headquar­ ters. This year the cruise will be on Tuesday night at 7:00 pm. Please check with the A/C Head­ quarters at the Convention if you have any questions concerning any of the activities. I am looking forward to see­ ing you at Oshkosh. Remember from "Jennies to Jets!" You'll see it all this year! Let's all pull in one direction for the good of avia­ tion. Join us and have it all! •


Tom Poberezny



Dick Mall


Mark Phelps

MAY 1989 • Vol. 17, No.5


Mike Drucks

Copyright ' 1989 by the ADVERTISING

Mary Jones


Norman Petersen

Dick Cavin


George A Hardie, Jr.

Dennis Parks

EM Antiquel Classic Division , Inc. All rights reserved .

Contents 2

Straight and Levellby Espie "Butch" Joyce


Isabelle Wlske


Sun 'N Fun Photo Previewlby Mark Phelps


Jim Koepnick

Carl Schuppel

Jeff Isom


AlC News/compiled by Mark Phelps




Letters to the Editor


Members' Projectslby Norm Petersen




President Espie "Butch" Joyce Box 468 Madison, NC 27025

Vice President Arthur R Morgan 3744 North 51st Blvd. Milwaukee, WI 53216



Secretary George S. York 181 Sloboda Ave. Mansfield, OH 44906


E.E. "Buck" Hilbert

P.O. Box 424

Union, IL 60180



Vintage Literaturelby Dennis Parks


Chapter Chronicleslby Bob Brauer


Flying the PCA-2 Autogiro/ by Steve Pitcairn


Louise Thadenlby Bill Thaden and Pat Thaden Webb


C-2 Restoration: A Journal- Part 4/ by George Quast


Pass It To Buck/by E.E. "Buck" Hilbert


RampTrampChamplby Edlock Hart


Welcome New Members


Planes and People/Pu blicity Committee


Vintage Trader


Mystery Planelby George Hardie Jf.



DIRECTORS Robert C. "Bob" Brauer 9345 S. Hoyne Chicago, IL 60620

John S. Copeland 9 Joanne Drive Westborough, MA 01581



Philip Coulson 28415 Springbrook Dr. Lawton, M149065

William A Eickhoff 41515th Ave .. N.E. St. Petersburg, FL 33704



Charles Harris 3933 South Peoria P.O. Box 904038 Tulsa, OK 74105

Stan Gomoll 104290th Lane, NE Minneapolis, MN 55434



Dale A Gustafson 7724 Shady Hill Drive Indianapolis, IN 46278

Robert D. "Bob" Lumley N104W20387 Willow Creek Rd. Colgate, WI 53107



Gene Morris 115C steve Court, R.R. 2 Roanoke, 1)( 76262

Steven C. Nesse 2009 Highland Ave. Albert Lea, MN 56007

Page 12 aov.......s. b4J._


Page 20

FRONT COVER ... Steve Pitcairn flies the PCA-2 Autogiro that also bears his family name. For a unique pilot report, see Steve's story on page 12. (Photo by Howard Levy) BACK COVER ... The Goodyear Blimp poses over Pioneer Airport. (Photo by Dollie Gheen)


817/491-9110 Daniel Neuman 1521 Berne Circle W. Minneapolis, MN 55421 612/571-0893

s.H. OWes" Schmid

2359 Lefeber Avenue

Wauwatosa, WI 53213



7200 S.E. 85th Lane

Ocala, FL 32672



SHOPPE and logos 01 !he EM AVIATION FOUNDATION INC. and EM ULTRALIGHT CONVENTION are Irademarl<s ollhe above associalions and Iheir use by any person olher

Ihan !he above associalions is slrictly prohibiled.


Edrtorial Policy: Readers are encouraged 10 submil slories and pholographs. Policy opinions expressed ~ articles are solely Ihose oilhe aUlhors. Responslbilrty lor accuracy In

reporting resls enlirely wilh llie conlribulor. Malerial should be senllo: Edrtor, The VINTAGE AIRPLANE, Wittman Regional Airport, 3000 Pobere,ny Rd.• Oshkosh, WI 54903·3086.

Phcne: 414142fj·4800.


The VINTAGE AIRPLANE (ISSN 0091-6943) is published and owned exclusively by EM AnllQuelClasslc DiviSion, Inc. ollhe Experimenlal Aircrah Assoclalion, Inc. and is published

monlhly al Wittman Regional Airport. 3000 Pobere,ny Rd.• Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. Second Class Pos\age paid al Oshkosh, WI 54901 and addl1ional mailing offices. Membership

rales lor EM Anlique/Class~ Di~sion, Inc. are $18.00 lor currenl EM members lor 12 monlh perIOd 01 wf1ic!1 512.00 is lor Ihe publ ~alion 01 The VINTAGE AIRPLANE. Membefship

is open to all who are interested in aviation.

John A Fogerty RR2, Box 70 Roberts, WI 54023


Peter Hawks Sky Way Bid.. Suite 204 655 SkyWay San CalosAirport San Carlos, CA 94070


ADVERTISING - Antique/Classic Division does not guarantee Of endorse any proouct offered through our advertising. We invrte constructive critiCism and welcome any report of

inferior merchandise obtained through our advertising so thaI corrective measures can be taken.

POSTMASTER: Send address changes 10 EM Antique/ClaSSIC Division, Inc., Witlman Regional Airport, Oshkosh, WI 54903·3086.


by Mark Phelps 路Contact!"

Johnny Thomson aloft in his New Standard. 4 MAY 1989

Ed Sweeney enlists a helping leg to push his Aerocar out for a flyby.

Definitely worth a second look -

All eyes skyward

Dick McNeil's award-winning Swift.

A Sun 'n Fun field trip. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 5

Compiled by Mark Phelps



Anyone with leads on pioneer aviators who may be interviewed at Oshkosh during this year's Convention should notify the Pioneer Aviation Video Committee . The goal is to capture avi­ ation's historical people on tape for fu­ ture generations . Interview sessions during the Convention can be sched­ uled at the interviewee's convenience . If you know of someone whose avia­ tion legacy should be preserved, con­ tact Bob Lumley, Willow Creek Road, Colgate, Wisconsin 53017, 414/255­ 6832 .

SUN 'N FUN This year's fly-in at Lakeland, Florida was a rousing success. Atten­ dance was up all through the week. The variety of antiques and classics was enough to stir your imagination back in time to the days when these wonderful airplanes first plied the skies . Relaxing on the front porch of the relocated Antique/Classic Head­ quarters building was a pleasant way to watch the airshow or just monitor the comings and goings of the crowd . The low-key pace of the Lakeland event is personified in President, Billy Henderson with his ready smile and gentle drawl. No problem is so big that it can get Billy riled, and that sets the pace for the entire extravanganza. Whether you came from the still-un­ thawed North or from around the bend somewhere in Florida, Sun 'n Fun was a great way to spend the week and open the summer flying season.

6 MAY 1989



The award winners at this year's EAA Sun 'n Fun Fly-in are as follows:

GRAND CHAMPION - Cessna 195, Tom Hull, Hollywood, Maryland.


BEST RESTORED, 101 TO 165 hp - Temco GC I B Swift, Mark Holli­ day, Lake Elmo, Minnesota.

GRAND CHAMPION - Lockheed Electra 12A, Kent Blankenburg, Ar­ royo Grande, California. RESERVE GRAND CHAMPION Fleetwings F-5 Seabird, Blake Oliver, Daytona Beach , Florida. SILVER AGE 1928-1932 - WACO CTO, Bob White, Zellwood, Florida. CONTEMPORARY AGE 1933-1945 - Piper J5A, Ronald Frank, Lake Angelus, Michigan. BEST CUSTOM - Howard DGA, Fred Kirk, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. BEST WORLD WAR II ERA Cessna T-50, James Kramer, Boynton Beach, Florida. BEST BIPLANE - Beech Staggerw­ ing, Morley E . Servos, Burlington , Ontario . BEST MONOPLANE Rearwin, Joseph and Alex Garland, Naples, Florida. BEST OPEN COCKPIT - WACO CTO, Bob White, Zellwood, Florida. BEST CABIN - Stinson Detroiter, Robert Hedgecock, Barnesville, Geor­ gia. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT WACO IBA, Barry and Vivian Bra­ nin, Costa Mesa, California. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT - DC­ 3, Roger Holler, Orlando, Florida.

BEST RESTORED, OVER 165 hp­ Luscombe IIA Sedan, Bill Wright, EI Cajon, California. BEST CUSTOM, OVER 165 hp Stinson 108-2 Station Wagon, Tom and Lorraine Zedaker, Las Vegas, Nevada. BEST OF TYPE - PA 22-20, Carol J . Ciavardone, Lakeland, Florida. BEST OF TYPE - Cessna 170, Mar­ tin Lowe, Culpeper, Virginia. BEST OF TYPE - Bellanca Cruisair, B. Dale Weakley, Chapmansboro , Tennessee . BEST OF TYPE - Navion, Steve and Scott McLain, Sussex, Wisconsin. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT - Lus­ combe IIA Sedan, Clyde Barton, Angleton , Texas. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT Cessna 195 , Bob Silwanicz, Pompano Beach, Florida. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT Swift, Dick McNeil, North Wilkes­ boro, North Carolina . OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT Swift, Bill and Geraldine Jennings, Dalton, Georgia. OUTSTANDING AIRCRAFT Aerocar, Ed Sweeney, Daytona Beach, Florida .•


May 5-7 Burlington, North Carolina. Annual Spring EAA Fly-in for Classic and Antique Aeroplanes. Sponsored by EAA Antique/Classic Chapter #3. Contact Ray Bottom Jr., 103 Powhatan Parkway, Hampton , Virginia 23661 . May 6-7 - Winchester, Virginia. EAA Chapter 186 Spring Fly-In at air­ port. Trophies for winning show planes . Pancake breakfast Sunday. Concessions. Apple Blossom Festival downtown. All welcome . Contact George Lutz at 703/256-7873 . May 7 - Rockford , Illinois. EAA Chapter 22 Annual Fly-In Breakfast. Greater Rockford Airport - Mark Clark 's Courtesy Aircraft, 7:00 am until noon . ATIS 126.7. Contact Wal­ lace Hunt, Tel 818/332-4708 . May 19 - Alsip, Illinois . EAA Chap­ ter 260 23rd annual anniversary din­ ner. Conde sa del Mar, 12220 So. Cic­ ero . Contact Frank Rosner, Tel 312/ 339-6323 . May 20-21 - Alexandria, Minnesota. Bellanca - Champion National Fly-In . Alexandria Airport . Contact Rob or AI , Tel 6121762-2111. May 20-21 - Hampton, New Hamp­ shire . 13th Annual Aviation Flea Mar­ ket. Contact Mike Hart , Tel 603/964­ 6749 . May 20-21 - Ferriday , Louisiana . Ferriday Fly-In. Concordia Pari sh Air­ port . Sponsored by EAA Chapter 912 . Contact Jerry Stallings, Route I , Box 190, Ferriday, Louisiana 71334 , Tel 3181757-2103. May 21 - Benton Harbor, Michigan . Third annual Fly-In breakfast, war­ birds, boat show , classic car show and trophies for aircraft . Sponsored by EAA Chapter 585 , AVSAT Aviation and Twin Cities Airport. Contact AI Todd , PO Box 61, Stevensville , Michigan, 49127 Telephone 616/429­ 2929. May 21 -

Central County Airport , 12

miles north of Waupaca , Wisconsin. First annual, all-you-can-eat smelt fry, sponsored by Central County Flyers . Call 414/596-3530 . May 26-28 - Afton , Oklahoma . The Third annual Twin Bonanza Associa­ tion convention at the Shangri La Re­ sort. Contact Richard Ward, Twin Bonanza Association , 19684 Lake­ shore Drive , Three Rivers, Michigan 49093 Telephone 616/279-2540. June 2-3 - Bartlesville , Oklahoma . Biplane Expo ' 89 , National Biplane Convention and Exposition . Frank Phillips Field . Sponsored by National Biplane Association . Contact Charles W. Harris , 9181742-7311 or Mary Jones , 918/299-2532 . June 3-4 - Coldwater, Michigan. Fifth Annual Fairchild Reunion. Con­ tact Mike Kelly , 22 Cardinal Drive, Coldwater, Michigan 49036. Tel 517/ 278-7654 . June 9-10 - Denton , Texas. Twenty­ seventh Texas Chapter AAA Fly-In , Denton Municipal Airport. Contact Don or Shirley Swindle 214/429-6343 or Bob Landrum 817/430-3387 or John Price 817/481-9005 . June 10 - Newport News, Virginia. Seventeenth Annual Colonial Fly-in. Patrick Henry Airport . Sponsored by EAA Chapter 156. Contact Chet Sprague, 8 Sinclair Rd ., Hampton, Virginia 23669. Tel 8041723-3904 . June 11 - Aurora , Illinois. EAA Chapter 579 Fly-In Breakfast and FBO open house at Aurora Municipal Air­ port . Contact Alan Shackleton at 312/ 466-4193 or Bob Reiser at 312/466­ 7000. June 22-25 - Mount Vernon , Ohio . 30th Annual Waco Reunion . Wynkoop Airport . Make your reservations at the Curtis Motor Hotel , just one mile from the airport , 1-800-828-7847 , or (in Ohio) 1-800-634-6835 . There will be no Waco fly-in at Hamilton this year. For more information , contact Na­ tional Waco Club, 700 Hill Avenue, Hamilton, Ohio 45015 .

June 23-25 Pauls Valley, Ok­ lahoma. Greater OKC Chapter of AAA Fly-In . Great facility for Fly-In and camping . Close to motels . Contact Harry Hanna at 405/946-4026, or Bud Sutton at 405/392-5608 . June 24-25 - Orange Massachusetts. EAA Chapter 726 New England Fly-In and antique engine show . Two run­ ways, 5,000- by I 50-feet, trophies, flea market and food. Warbirds wel­ come . Contact Joe Smolen, 413/498­ 2266 . June 24-25 - Ridgeway , Virginia. Second annual Fly-In and Pig-picking at Pace Field (36 ' 35" N, 79 '52"W) . Call 703/956-2159 . July 14-15 - Fort Collins Loveland , Colorado . Eleventh annual Rocky Mountain Regional Fly-In. Co-spon­ sored by EAA Chapter 648. Contact 3031798-6086 or 442-5002. July 15-16 - lola , Wisconsin . Annual Fly-In breakfast at Central County Air­ port, both days in association with lola Old Car Show Weekend. Call 414/ 596-3530. July 15-16 - Delaware, Ohio . Cen­ tral Ohio - 8th annual EAA Chapter 9 Fly-In . Delaware Airport . Contact Walt McClory , 614/881-4267 or Al an Harding , 614/885-6502 . August 19-20 - Reading , Pennsyl­ vania . Reading AeroFest at Reading Municipal Airport. Fly-In Breakfast sponsored by Pottstown Aircraft Own­ ers and Pilots Association . August 25-27 - Sussex, New Jersey. Seventeenth Annual Sussex Air Show . "Biggest Little Air Show in the World ." Sussex Airport. Call 201 /875­ 7337 or 875-9919 . October 5-8 - Pauls Valley, Ok­ lahoma. International Cessna 120-140 Association Fly-In Convention . Fifty miles south of Oklahoma City on 1-35. Fly-Outs, games and fun for all. Close to motels and shopping mall. Excellent camping facilities on field . Contact Bud Sutton at 405/392-5608 . • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 7

Letters TO The Editor <CE .~~~ •

CENTERFOLD Dear Mark, Thanks for the opportunity to tell one of my stories (Special Delivery, March) in VINTAGE AIRPLANE. I've been getting a little ribbing about mak­ ing the centerfold of the issue . It was al so interesting to see the let­ ter about Cole Palen's Davis (Letters, March) in which I have many flights. It now has a 125-hp Warner in it and no tail-heavy tendency . In fact , the trim system had been removed some time before Cole bought it and the stabilizer fixed in place apparently level with the top longerons. It flies great and with that beautiful wing I've often wondered why nobody tries to put them back into production instead of Great Lakes . See you at Oshkosh. Yours, Andrew King Va\ley Cottage, New York

WE LIKE WEICK Dear Mr. Joyce, You probably wouldn't know me from Adam but for a number of years I was quite active in the Antique/ Classic Division, mostly working with Art Morgan. Since I am about to take my vow of Poverty in this Religious Community (Modonna House Aposto­ late, Ontario) after some 35 years in active parish work, I have had to let my membership (AiC 2784) expire. Owning an airplane and the vow of poverty just don't seem to go together. I am a dedicated Ercouper, having owned one since 1954 - sometimes more than one. I have also owned Tripacers, a Comanche, a J-3 and a Navion. But I do have a soft spot in my heart (and head) for Ercoupes. Not only that, I have tremendous admira­ tion, loyalty and respect for Fred Weick. When I joined Madonna House, I donated my 1941 Ercoupe to the EAA Aviation Foundation in honor of Fred Weick. I was so very happy when SPORT AVIATlON' s Jack Cox reviewed Fred's autobiography, FROM THE GROUND UP (Smithso­ nian). Not only did Jack praise the book , he spoke of Fred as the "finest gentleman you'll ever meet." Buck Hilbert, one of my best friends, keeps telling me that we Er­ coupers are too sensitive about our airplane. That is probably true . But I think that a lot of our sensitivity has to do with Mr. Fred. Anyone who has 8 MAY 1989



read the book or the article about Fred in the September issue of AOPA PILOT, or who has talked to Ke\ly Viets , or, better yet, has spent time talking to Mr. Fred knows that here is one of the great men of aviation. More particularly one of the great men of General Aviation, of "poor-boy fly­ ing ." Here is a man who is responsible for NACA winning a Co\lier Trophy, who holds the patents on steerabJe tricycle landing gear, spinproof and stallproof airplanes, who designed the modem agplane , who converted Piper from "rag-and-tube" to metal airplanes; and who, with all of these accomplishments , when offered posi­ tions with the large manufacturers, turned these offers down because he believed more work needed to be done for private flying. Fred's influence runs through pri­ vate aviation everywhere you look, only most people don't know it. Did you know that every time you figure out the distance it will take to take off and clear a 50-foot obstacle, you are using a criterion set up by the same Fred Weick? The reason I am mentioning this is that Fred is, thanks to the Good Lord, still alive and reasonable well. He probably will be at Oshkosh again this year as he is every year. However, he is now 90 years old and his wife of 64 years is just a year younger. They may not be around much longer. Enough said. I think Mr. Fred is the greatest and I would like to suggest that you come to know him while you can since he is the epitome of dedica­ tion to private flying .

New Jersey in the 1930s. I looked through his logbook from the Curtiss Flying Service and was fascinated to find that he had received hi s first Moth dual trammg in NC 566K in November, 1931 . He subsequently sol­ oed the aircraft. In his logs , there is an interesting "remark" noted after a flight on Janu­ ary 24, 1932 with one Norman Potter in NC 566K . He mentions a "crackup on landing" that must not have been too bad because he flew the aircraft later that day. Dad flew his own Moth , NC 300H until it was demolished by a prospec­ tive buyer on May 7, 1933. The loss of his Moth, a pending marriage, a new and struggling business venture and the privations of the Depression curtailed his flying adventures after 71 hours . Although we were never able to fly together, my kinship with Dad has just grown from seeing an aircraft he flew. Thank you for this peek into the past.

The Rev. Thomas Rowland Combermere, Ontario

Very truly yours , George F. Johnson East Greenwich, Rhode Island

Thanks for your interest and for point­ ing this out to me. - Butch At Butch' s request, the Rev. Mr. Row­ land has been put on the complimen­ tary-copy mailing list for VINTAGE AIRPLANE. - Ed.

MOTH MEMORIES Dear Mr. Phelps, The Radtke Collection photo of de­ Havilland Moth NC 566K in "Time Capsule" (March) reminded me of my father's experience flying Moths. My dad, William B. Leavens, Jr., flew out of Essex County Airport in Caldwell,

Yours truly,

William B. Leavens III (AiC 10201)

Long Valley, New Jersey

CAPITOL CONDORS Dear Mr. Phelps, In answer to your inquiry in "Time Capsule" (March), under the Curtiss­ Wright YC-30, the "Capitol Dome" was the squadron insignia of the 14th Bomb Group. It absorbed the Bolling Field Detachment, General Headquar­ ters Air Force (GHQAF), and its insig­ nia in the spring of 1935 . This was a time of great changes in the U.S . Army Air Corps.

Dear Sir, The Curtiss-Wright Condor, YC-30, shown is one of two purchased in 1933 (c/ns 26 and 27). This aircraft (#27) serial 33-321 and the other YC-30, were purchased as VIP transports and based at Bolling Field, Washington , D.C. During spring 1935 , the Bo\ling Field Detachment was absorbed by the 14th Bomb Squadron/Group and the "Capitol" insignia used by the 14th. Sincerely, J.B. Hyde

Alameda, California.

by Norm Petersen

AlC member Weldon (Willie) Ropp (EAA 12331, AlC 787) of Delray Beach, Florida sent in these pictures of his recently restored Curtiss Wright Travel Air 16E, N12380, SIN 3520. Only ten of this model were built in the early 1930s and three survive on the FAA register. Powered with a Wright R-540 engine of 165hp, the 16E is a lively performer. Although presently flying on wheels, the Travel Air is slated to be mounted on a set of EDO 2425 floats in the future. Willie reports the original approval to mount the 16E on EDO 2260 floats is being modified to the 2425 floats and the FAA paperwork is well along after two years of diligent work. And for those of you working night and day to restore an airplane, take heart - Weldon Ropp has just celebrated his 77th birthday! Congratulations!

The photo of this Aeronca l-16 (7BCM), N10493, SIN 7BCM-341, was sent in by W. E. (Ed) Jarnagin (EAA 298812, AlC 13162) of Miam~ Florida Built in 1947, the aircraft is actually an l -16A with a dorsal modification and complete with a Continental C85-8FJ engine with fuel injection. It still has the original engine it left the factory with! Ed reports the l-16A was stationed at Bolling AFB from 1947 to 1954 after which it was transfered to the CAP from 1954 to 1978. One of about 210 remaining on the FAA register, the l -16A was restored to almost 100% original. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 9

GROUP TWO APPROVALS The Air Commerce Act of 1926 brought commercial air operations in the country within the law , thus estab­ lishing the foundation of a new and vital business. The Act was the result of many years of agitation throughout the country for federal action in the encouragement and control of civil aeronautics . One of the provisions of the new law was to "Provide for the rating of air­ craft of the United States as to their airworthiness." One of the methods was covered in Section 21 of the 1926 Air Commerce Regulations as "Man­ ufacturer's Approved Type Certifi­ cates." The regulation provided that "A manufacturer of airplanes in quantities and of an exact similarity of type, structure , materials, assembly and workmanship may, at the option of the manufacturer, file with the Secretary of Commerce an application for an ap­ proved type certi ficate ." The A. T . C. number was a mark of honor awarded by the Department of Commerce stating to all that the plane was completely airworthy and safe. The first such certificate was issued during March 1927 for the Buhl-Ver­ ville J4 Airster. An examination of de­ sign trends of the aircraft receiving type certificates during the first four years was presented in the October 1987 installment of "Vintage Litera­ ture." In January 1929 a new type of ap­ proval appeared . This was known as the Group 2 approval . The first aircraft to receive such an approval was the Alexander Eaglerock A-7 with the Siemens-Halske SH-12 engine. Examination of the December 1940 CAA INSPECTION HANDBOOK, Chapter XVIII , "Approved Aircraft" shows that the entries for Group 2 re­ cord the basis for certification of these aircraft was CAA Aeronautics Bulletin 7A, Section 3. This bulletin was enti­ tled "Airworthiness Requirements for Aircraft. " Section 3 "Airworthiness Factors" of that publication is very vague as to requirements. It states , "In determining the airworthiness of aircraft, the fol­ lowing factors are taken into consider­ ation: " and includes such things as (A) 10 MAY 1989

by Uennis Vaf"ks The structural strength of wings, fuse­ lage, engine mount, (B) Cockpit, cabin and control arrangements , etc . Nothing very detailed. It also stated in Section 3 that "Cer­ tain of these items may be demonstra­ ted by analyses and drawings, others by visual inspection and others by tests." A search through CAA regulations on certification from 1926 to 1938 has been unable to locate any mention of such a thing as a Group 2 Approval . According to Volume 9 of JUPTNER US CIVIL AIRCRAFT, the Group 2 Approval "was initially offered as a cheaper way to go for the small opera­ tion, or individuals , who could not see fit to spend the rather large amounts of money necessary for acquisition of a full-blown ATC." "This "lesser" type of approval was usually awarded to an airplane that would be built either in one or two examples only, a limited quantity for

test and evaluation, or for some pre­ determined number of airplanes. This approval was also awarded for certain modifications (such as a different engine, increased , decreased or re­ arranged seating, major interior changes, increased fuel capacity, etc .) of a stan­ dard type airplane already in approved (ATC) production." Again no basis in the regulations for such a downgrading or relaxation of certificate requirements was located . Can anyone shed any light on Group 2 Approvals? JUPTNER's lists more than 600 air­ craft with Group 2 Approvals. There seem to be two major categories of air­ craft on the list. The first are those ATC' d aircraft that have been re-en­ gined such as the Eaglerock with the Siemens-Halske engine and the Stin­ son SM-6B with a 4S0-hp Wasp. Sec­ ond were the limited production air­ craft such as the California Cub, the Thaden T-I and Howard Hughes ' s Boeing 100 Special . •

Group 2 Approval #2-506 (6-29-35) Parks P-1T with 115-hp Milwaukee Tank engine. Group 2 approvals were also issued to Travel Air 2000s and Bird ATs with the Tank engine.

Group 2 Approval #2-416 (7-11-32) Lock­ heed Orion 9-C originally with 450 hp Wasp for serial no. 180. Later converted to "Shell­ lightning" with 650 hp Wright SR-1820. Flown regularly by Jimmy Doolittle.

Group 2 Approval #2-129 (2-28-29) Hamilton H-47 Special with 525-hp Wright Cyclone engine; all serial numbers when modified to conform to 5,750 Ibs. gross weight.


by Bob Brauer

T his column is the first of a series dealing with the activities of our divi­ sion's chapters . Currently, our division sports IS chapters with applications in for two more. The content of the column will be news items, Antique/Classic commen­ tary and items of interest originating from chapter newsletters, correspon­ dence and personal contacts. So, if any of you are planning, or have done, any­ thing you think we would like to read about, please submit it to me by phone or mail. I appreciate the receipt of all material . Antique/Classic Chapter 2, the "Houston Antique Flyers," meets the fourth Sunday of each month at the Dry Creek Airport in Cypress, Texas, near Houston. The chapter was founded in the late 1960s by its current secretary, J.J. "Jonsey" Paul as an affiliate of the AAA and joined the Antique/Classic Division of EAA in March 1973. Jon­ sey recalls the founding members as John Kane, Ed Markowski, Jim Cox, Bob Day, Frank Dedak, Corky Pyron and Raybourn Thompson, Jr. Jonsey is the president of the Na­ tional Stinson Club and is the owner of a Stinson SR9 and a 1929 Laird Bi­ plane LCB. Rowland Howard, another Chapter 2 member, donated the J-3 Cub that now is on exhibit in the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington , D .C. Row­ land is also heading up the efforts to construct a state aviation museum in Texas . Jim Fowler, president of A /C Chap­ ter 2, reports that most meetings are centered around a balance of social and aviation-oriented activities. Ever since the chapter was started, activities have been at Dry Creek Airport, a grass airstrip and hangar belonging to John and B' Kane . In fact , the Kanes were honored by the chapter members last

Typical Chapter 2 meeting, circa 1974.

February in appreciation for all their contributions to the chapter and for all the pleasant flying at Dry Creek Air­ port. The chapter presented a plaque to John and B' in recognition of their gra­ cious hospitality in providing the use of their hangar for chapter meetings . Judging from their newsletters, Chapter 2 strives to include "how-to" programs as part of its meetings . In addition, Jim urges that members should follow up the 88-2 issue with comments to the FAA and to local gov­ ernment representatives. A good idea for all of us to do . We need all the help we can get.

Jim observes that many younger people are showing interest in older aircraft. He suggest that an instruc­ tional videotape library be made avail­ able for use by the chapters at reason­ able cost. Fabric covering, painting, welding and the hanging of wings are topics in demand. He thinks the tape series should be presented in short , concise segments to maintain interest. Jim speaks from experience. You may have seen him and his son in their well­ maintained deHavilland Tiger Moth at Oshkosh for several years running. That's all the way from Houston and back, pardner! • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 11

by Steve Pitcairn


1923 a young Spaniard, Juan de la Cierva, flew the first rotary-wing aircraft in controlled flight at Madrid, Spain. Cierva, the inventor and pilot of this unique aircraft, called it the Au­ togiro. The name came from the fact that the rotor blades rotated without power as a result of aerodynamic forces created by the movement of the aircraft through the air. The Autogiro was pulled through the air by an engine driven propeller similiar to airplanes of the day . The rotary wing which pro­ vided the lift, permitted slow flight and landings at virtually no forward speed . My father, Harold F. Pitcairn, who had been experimenting with rotary­ wing models (with limited success) heard of Cierva's work and went to Europe in 1925 to talk to Cierva and watch his new machine fly . On a sec­ ond trip to Europe in 1928, my father flew Cierva's latest C-8 Autogiro and in 1929 he purchased the U. S . rights to Cierva's inventions and patents. The first series of autogiros man­ ufactured by Pitcairn had a fixed rotor­ head spindle and control in flight was by means of ailerons fixed to stub wings, plus elevators and a rudder. In 1933, Pitcairn completed the design work on a tilting rotor-head (direct control) autogiro, designated the PA­ 22, and started flight tests . All control on the PA-22 was through movement of the rotor-head by means of the con­ trol stick. It was no longer necessary to have stub wings with ailerons and elevators. The rudder was retained to give extra control in slow flight and for maneuvering on the ground . Development work continued on the PA-22 and later on the AC-35, PA-33 , PA-36 and PA-39 direct-control Pit­ cairn autogiros. The PA-36 was an all­ metal, two place cabin autogiro pow­ ered by a 165-hp Warner Super Scarab engine located behind the cabin . The PA-36 had jump take-off capability and was designed to be driven on high­ ways with the rotor blades folded and the propeller disengaged. The jump take-off or vertical ascent was ac­ complished by rotating the rotor held in zero degree pitch until reaching 170 percent of normal flight rotor rpm. The blade angle was held in zero degree pitch by hydraulic pressure. To initiate the jump, the pilot released the hyd­ raulic pressure and power take-off clutch simultaneously by means of a 12 MAY 1989

button on the throttle lever. The release of hydraulic pressure automatically in­ creased the blade pitch to four degrees positive and the stored energy in the over-speeding blades lifted the auto­ giro vertically 30 feet or more. As the blades slowed to normal cruise rpm, the autogiro, with full power to the propeller, would gain forward speed and start a normal climb out. The flying characteristics of the au­ togiro in cruise are simliar to those of an airplane; coordination of control being through a control stick or control wheel and rudder pedals . Normal take­ offs are also similar to those of an

airplane in both the direct control and fixed rotor-head autogiro . The jump take-off requires an additonal degree of training and skill and obviously a maneuver not experienced by pilots of fixed-wing airplanes. Landing both types of autogiros also requires the de­ velopment of new skills and pilot orientation to slow and zero-speed for­ ward flight regimes. Before relating my experiences fly­ ing the PCA-2 autogiro, the differ­ ences in flight characteristics of the fixed spindle rotor-head autogiro and the direct control autogrio should be explained.

The PCA-2 with its fixed rotor-head relied on ailerons, elevators and a rud­ der for control. When the forward speed dropped below 35 mph, effec­ tiveness of the airplane-type control surfaces diminished and control was lost. As the pilot raised the nose and flared for touchdown at speeds be­ tween zero and 10 mph, all control would be lost. If the approach was not made directly into the wind, a side­ wards drift would drop the downwind wing with the downwind wheel strik­ ing the ground sideways causing dam­ age to the landing gear. In strong cross­ winds, a rollover was possible . In a

flare close to the ground at almost zero airspeed, the pilot could not elect to fly out and try again. A rapid applica­ tion of power to the Wright R-975 en­ gine would cause a roll to the left due to engine torque . With minimal for­ ward speed the ailerons would be inef­ fective and the autogiro would strike a wing on the ground. Inexperienced pilots and know-it-all airplane jockeys did get involved in minor accidents resulting in damage to autogiros. In all cases, the pilot never received injury other than to his pride . The crosswind really did not create a problem to the experienced

pilot. Because of its steep approach and short or no landing roll , the auto­ giro could always be landed directly into the wind. Many times I have landed on runways at 90 degrees to the runway direction when there was a direct cross­ wind. The later autogiro with the tilting rotor-head had positive control at all times . The trained pilot could correct a sideways drift on landing or could apply power in the flare and counteract the engine torque through control input to the rotor-head . My limited experience in flying au­ togiros began in the early 1940s. I had purchased a used 1933 PAA-I, a small sport Pitcairn autogiro which had a fixed rotor head, standard airplane control surfaces and a 160-hp five-cy­ linder Kinner engine. The owner of the autogiro was going to teach me how to fly it as part of the deal. For some reason, he and I could never find a time when we could meet and, after several weeks of frustration, I decided to solo myself and fly the autogiro from Warrington Airport, Pennsyl­ vania, to my father's estate about 15 miles away. During the two-week frustration period, I read everything I could find from the Pitcairn factory files on flying autogiros. On the first nice day with light winds, I gathered up my courage and flew the autogiro , landing awkwardly but successfully on the lawn of my father's home . I con­ tinued to fly the autogiro for several years and made the mistake of selling it when I signed on with Eastern Air­ lines as a pilot. Years later, in 1982, I was fortunate to be able to purchase the PCA-2 autogiro, "Miss Champi­ on," which was stored in pieces in a Vermont bam . This autogiro was orig­ inally owned by the Champion Spark Plug Company . During the restoration of " Miss Champion ," I went to Far­ rington Aircraft in Paducah, Kentucky , to get my private gyroplane rating in an Air and Space jump take-off autog­ iro. After receiving my rating, I pur­ chased an Air and Space autogiro to stay current while preparing for the up­ coming test flight of "Miss Champi­ on." The first thing one notices when anticipating flying the PCA-2 is its huge size. The top of the pilot ' s windshield is almost eight feet above the ground and the first step up into the cockpit is over three feet high . The PCA-2 fuselage and cockpit closely re­ semble other big planes of the day such as the Stearman C3R, Travel Air 4000 and the Pitcairn Mailwing. Controls VINTAGE AIRPLANE 13

Amelio Earhart taking the first. three-foot step into the cockpit of her PCA-2 autogiro. Miss Beech-Nut.

and instruments are basically the same as those of any airplane of the 1930s . The autogiro has the addition of a rotor tachometer, fuel pressure gauge, wob足 ble pump, rotor brake handle and a large lever for engaging the rotor clutch . The cockpit is large and roomy and the seat's vertical adjustment is al-

Pitcairn PAA-1. similar to my first autogiro.

most JO inches, allowing the pilot to raise the seat to high position for take足 off and landing, and lowering the seat for comfortable cruise out of the slipstream . Taxiing is also similar to a biplane requiring "S" turns to make sure that nothing is hidden by the big engine.

While not rotating, the blades on the early fixed rotor-head autogiro were supported by droop cables . The blades pivot vertically on "flapping hinges" and if not for the restraint of the droop cables, the blades would rest on the fuselage or the ground. In a strong wind, the non-rotating blades could be

The Pobjoy-powered Pitcairn PA-22, the first roadable. direct-control. jump toke-off autogiro built by Pitcairn 14 MAY 1989

blown vertically causing damage when the blade drops back down after the wind or gust subsides. The later direct control autogiros are similar to the helicopter in that the blades are sup­ ported at the hub, eliminating the need for droop cables. Their vertical travel is also restricted by the hub design. On the PCA-2 and other fixed rotor-head autogiros, the hub spindle is slanted slightly to the left. By turning the left side of the autogiro into the wind, the force blows on top of the blades, pre­ venting them from being blown verti­ cally. At a rotor rpm of 60 or higher, centrifugal force holds the blades hori­ zontal, eliminating any serious wind effect while taxiing . The first flight test of "Miss Cham­ pion" was scheduled on May 14, 1986, three days after my 62nd birthday. The challenge to test-fly the PCA-2 was, in a way, awesome. I had self-soloed the PAA-I some 40 years ago and I had received instruction and a private gyroplane rating in the Air and Space autogiro in 1983. But the Air and Space autogiro with enclosed tandem cockpit, direct control and jump take­ off was small and a completely differ­ ent flying machine from the big PCA­

Taxiing with the pilOt's seat in the raised position.


On the day of the first flight tests, George Townson, who was responsi­ ble for restoring "Miss Champion," as­ sured me that all systems were okay. George, an A&P and lA, had been a test pilot for Piasecki Helicopters and had flown PCA-2 and Kellett autogiros on various missions and test flights in­ cluding crop dusting in the PCA-2. I knew his okay meant the PCA-2 was ready to fly. After managing the climb into the cockpit, my 62-year-old bones settled into the cushioned seat. The cockpit felt comfortable and familiar as I had been regularly flying two Pitcairn Mailwing biplanes with similar cockpits . My first cockpit check was to pump the wobble pump to make sure it was working and would bring up fuel pressure. The fuel system on the PCA-2 consists of a belly tank holding 39 gallons and a 13-gallon tank located high and just behind the firewall. Fuel is fed to the carburetor by gravity from the high 13-gallon tank. This tank is replenished by an engine-driven fuel pump which pumps fuel from the belly tank. Excess fuel returns to the belly tank. When the belly tank goes dry, the fuel pressure gauge drops to zero and the pilot knows he has a maximum of 13 gallons of fuel remaining and a~-

Just before ground contact, airspeed 10 mph. Full up elevator will stop the autogiro at touch-down.

Both the full-size and the scale-model PCA-2s show their droop-cables, supporting the limp rotor blades. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 15

proximately 40 minutes flying time . The wobble pump is used to pump fuel from the belly tank in case the engine pump fails . After eight pumps on the primer, I turned the magneto switch on "both" and hit the starter. The big Wright ' s 300-hp came to life with a cough and a great deal of smoke as the nine cylin­ ders cleaned themselves of residue oil. The plan was to make a series of short hops of about 400 feet distance at an altitude of six to 10 feet to check the trim and for me to get a feel of the controls in flight. Trenton-Robinsville Airport, where my restoration facility is located, has a grass strip parallel to the paved runway - ideal for the test flights . After taxiing to the end of the strip, I checked the magnetos and the various instruments. With the engine at high idle, around 800 rpm, the clutch lever is slowly pulled back engaging the clutch . It is important to increase pressure smoothly and slowly so as not to break the shear pin or over­ strain the clutch assembly . The shear pin is designed to break if the clutch or rotor ring and pinion drive gears are over-torqued. Installing a new shear pin is an easy task. The large heavy rotors come up to speed slowly. When the clutch is fully engaged the rotor is turning about 60 rpm with the engine at 700 rpm . While moving the throttle ahead slowly to increase the rotor rpm , care must be taken not to advance the throttle too quickly or the clutch will start to slip and lose its efficiency be­ cause of heat. Normal flight rotor rpm is 120 and this rpm can be reached by take-off power if all systems are in good condition. At 120 rpm, the en­ gine should be turning close to 1,300 rpm and at this point the pilot releases the clutch and brakes while adding full power. Normal take-off is in a three­ point attitude . Lift-off, with light wind, comes in about 200 feet at 30 to 35 mph. At this point, the rotor rpm has slowed to around 100 but quickly increases to 120 rpm in the climb out. Because of the long oleos and soft landing gear, it is difficult to know exactly when the autogiro becomes air­ borne. On my first flight, I was able to ob­ tain 120 rotor rpm and, with a quiet prayer, I released the clutch and brakes while shoving the throttle full forward. Before I realized it, I was in the air and 30 feet or so above the ground . I quickly reduced the power and held a level flight attitude as the autogiro set­ tled back onto the grass at about 20 mph. On rolling to a stop, the tail de­ 16 MAY 1989

cided to come around and before I could find the brakes, the 'giro made a 90 degree tum and stopped. The PCA-2 brake pedals are identical to the rudder pedals and located just inboard of the rudder pedals . To actuate the brakes, the pilot has to lift his foot off the rudder pedal and move over to the brake pedal which takes some practice before it comes naturally . After three more similar short hops , getting the landing flare down to a point where my roll was only five to 10 feet, I taxied back to the hangar to check out the autogiro and calm my nerves. On the next good day, I flew the autogiro to about 3,000 feet above the airport to become familiar with the big machine. I normally do not wear a hel­ met or headphones if I can help it and on this longer flight, the first thing I noticed was the whish-whish of the large, slow-turning blades . You can al­ most pick out each blade as it spins forward across the horizon. In con­ trast, the small blades on my Hughes 500D helicopter tum at 459 rpm and just disappear into a blurred disc and hum. I n'oticed the stick movements re­ quired for control were larger than the Mailwing, mostly due to the size of the PCA-2 and slower speed. "Miss Champion" seemed stable and I could trim her for hands-off flight, however, she did not have the stability of the Mailwing . With the power on, I could bring the airspeed down to 25 mph in a climb and maintain control. In a power off glide, control was lost around 30 mph . The autogiro does not stall as the spin­ ning blades are the lifting surfaces. If the nose is held high without power, it will settle slowly and the autogiro will tend to go into a large spiral as speed picks up to 30 mph and control is re­ gained. The maximum-glide-distance speed is 60 mph . On approach to a landing without power, I am usually at about 50 mph. At about 100 feet in altitude the nose should be brought up to level flight attitude and 40 mph. At approximately five feet above the ground, the pilot starts a flare bringing the stick all the way back and letting the autogiro settle to the ground on three points with a five to 10 foot roll­ out. A no-roll landing can be made by touching the tailskid down first and let­ ting the big soft oleos absorb the im­ pact of the main gear. In such a land­ ing, in a 10-15 mph wind, the autogiro will actually be going backwards . The most amazing sensation in landing is

the large size of the autogiro (3 ,000 Ibs . gross weight) and its ability to set­ tle softly on the ground with virtually no roll. Through practice, I learned that a vertical approach can be made to a landing spot by holding the auto­ giro at 25 to 30 mph with the engine at idle. The air flow over the control sur­ faces is then derived mainly from the relatively rapid vertical descent and not the forward flight. At about 120 feet , the nose has to be dumped sharply to increase the forward speed to 40 mph, allowing a last moment flare and touchdown without damage . My first approach and landing from altitude created some apprehension . I had wanted to flare and touch down with­ out a roll . I speculated that if I flared too high , I would drop in and if I flared too late , I could bounce and damage the landing gear. Fortunately, the PCA-2 is very forgiving and with what little mistakes I made , the touch down was soft and the roll out two or three feet. Once on the ground the blades begin to slow down and the pilot must check the wind. If it is strong, he must posi­ tion the autogiro so that the wind is from the left or rear until the rotor has been slowed to a stop with the brakes. I use rope tiedowns to each blade when taxiing directly into heavy winds and for outside storage. The autogiro can be taxied in strong winds with the rotor turning over 60 rpm, but special care should be exercised. "Miss Champion" has been flying since the summer of 1986. In addition to local flights, I have flown her to Oshkosh, Wisconsin and Jacksonville, Florida from my home base at the Trenton-Robbinsville Airport in New Jersey. My airspeed on cross-country flights is about 85 mph at 65 percent power. The PCA-2 properly rigged and trimmed and with the ground adjust­ able propeller set for cruise will make about 100 mph . Last fall after making a nice soft landing, I started to taxi back to the hangar. As the blades slowed down , I noticed out of the comer of my eye that something was wrong and I switched off the engine just as one of the blades hit the vertical stabilizer and then the slow-turning engine propeller. The bolt holding the blade to the droop cable had parted, letting the blade drop. We are now in the process of straightening the rotor spar and re­ building the blade ribs . Hopefully, the propeller will be back from the prop shop soon and "Miss Champion" will be in the air come spring 1989 . •

by Bill Thaden and Pat Thaden Webb


1933, the Thadens found them­ selves with no airplane of their own. Herb had a job with TW A in Kansas City and he occasionally got to fly copilot on a scheduled flight. For the first time Louise was forced to rent air­ craft time to stay current. Louise wrote, "When you haven't been in the air for a while, it becomes madness ­ the desire to fly. Perhaps because fly­ ing is the only real freedom we are allowed to possess." The fourth flying Thaden arrived in 1933. Herb wanted to witness the birth of his second child. When he nearly fainted, he was escorted to other ac­ commodations. Much later, he was cheerful and nonchalant when he and Louise admired their new daughter, Pat. During the winter of 1934, there were rumors of an international air race from London, England to Melbourne , Australia with $100,000 in prize money. It took Louise three months to talk Herb into teaming with her to enter

Louise Thaden -

Lt. Col.. Civil Air Patrol.

the McRobertson Race. Walter Beech agreed to build the ship - a Stagger­ wing to be powered with a Wright Cy­ clone engine. Expected cruise speed was 220 mph at 15,000 feet. Produc­ tion lagged behind schedule and even­ tually the plan was aborted. Never one to play the odds when they weren't in her favor, it was uncharacteristic of Louise to continue with the attempt for as long as she did. The pair admitted later that they may well have both been killed if they had pressed on with the dangerous and foolhardy enterprise. 1935 was a lean year financially. Flying jobs for women were scarce. The money spent on the aborted McRobertson Race plans left the cof­ fers bare. Louise found a job with Phoebe Omlie. They developed and or­ ganized a new air marking program for the Bureau of Air Commerce. Names of towns were placed on prominent structures as an aid to "temporarily dis­ oriented" pilots. Louise was in San An­ tonio with fellow air marker Blanche Noyes during the first week of August VINTAGE AIRPLANE 17

Bendix beams as louise accepts his 1936 Trophy. N UM ec.A



South Be'Dl1, Indiana



$ 2,500.00




187 '




.ttuk. n£ Ami!rint WATIO ,,",41;. L.,~l\1ot A'.OC,ATIO•



Two checks - one for being the first woman to finish and one for being the first pilot to finish.

1936. A telephone call came in to her from Olive Ann Beech. "Hello , Louise? Would you like to fly in the Bendix Trophy Race this year?" "In the Bendix! They won ' t let women enter," said Louise. "Well, they are this year," Ann said, "and further­ more, Mr. Bendix has posted a special award of $2,500 for the female pilot who finishes first regardless of her pos­ ition in the race itself. I think we might as well have that money, don ' t you?" Anyone who has read Louise's books or articles or ever had the plea­ 18 MAY 1989

sure of listening to her speak knows that she never separated plane from pilot. It was always "we" did this and "we" did that. When in an airplane she became an intergral part of its working machinery - a living extension of its controls. "Be good to your engine and it will be good to you," she always said . It's no wonder she elected to use cruise power on the Staggerwing's Wright engine for the race. The one and only stop on the race course from New York to Los Angeles was at the Beech fac­

tory in Wichita where Walter Beech handled all the details of · refueling . When he discovered what power set­ ting Louise had been using on the first leg of the flight, he blew up. "What the hell do you think you're in, a potato race? Open this damn thing up!" "Yes sir," Louise answered. Louise was not only the first woman to cross the finish line, she won the whole shooting match. Beech arrived in Los Angeles the following day. "Nice work, fella," he told Louise , "The old man knows what he's talking about, doesn't he?" "You certainly do," Louise answered smiling, "except we cruised out from Wichita , too. " "The devil you did! Well I'll be damned!" and he roared with laughter until his face flushed red and tears came to his eyes. "That's the best I ever heard. Two women winning the Bendix flying a stock airplane at cruis­ ing speed . And that engine has over 1,200 hours on it , too," he said, wiping his eyes. Which made it Louise 's tum to be surprised . "One thousand two hundred hours! Why that engine's practically a grandfather! Dam you for giving us a worn out engine!" If Louise learned anything from her interminable travels as an air marker, it was to always know where you are and never abuse the powerplant. It's not always the fastest ship that wins the race, she would say. Louise collected both Bendix prize checks. Some say it took Mr. Bendix just about as long to figure out how to change the name "consolation prize" as it did for Louise and her copilot , Blanche Noyes to fly the race - 14 hours, 55 minutes . Louise was awarded the Harmon Trophy for the year 1936, proclaiming her the outstanding woman pilot in the country. It was a personal high for her, but soon came crashing down on her shoulders when 1937 brought the death of her good friend Amelia Earhart . Louise wrote, "As many another I have often speculated on death and life hereafter. Eternal life, I think, is a life so lived that its deeds carry on through the ages. A.E. has carved a niche too deep to ever be forgotten. She will live. So I have said no farewell to her. As she invariably ended letters to me , so I say to her, 'Cherrio . '" During 1938 came other upheaval s. She made her most difficult decision - to keep her vow that when the time came for raising her children she would devote full time to being a mother and say farewell to aviation as a vocation. Amelia had tried to talk her out of it,

port, she proved to be master of her fate. Once again she emerged the win­ ner. She wrote:

"There is a sea, a quiet sea, Beyond the distant line, Where all my dreams of yesterday ­ And all the things that were to be, Are mine."

louise straps into son, Bill's T-33 for her first ride in a jet.

louise and daughter, Pat flank sponsor Don Jordan prior to the 1950 International Wornen's Air Race.

just as Louise had tried to talk Amelia out of marrying George Putnam . Neither got her wish. Several years later, as World War II began, came the second hardest deci­ sion of her life. She rejected an appeal by the government to all licensed women pilots to volunteer for pinch hitting flying duties . She yearned to be back in the skies and serving her coun­ try . But family had been put first, and there it was to stay. In the early 1940s, the family moved

from Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania to Roanoke , Virginia . It was here in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley that Louise would fight one of her hardest battles the battle against al­ coholism. With the country at war, no civilian flying was allowed . Herb 's Thaden Engineering Company was geared to invention and production of war effort products, with no need for her help. Adrift in this abyss, she lost herself. However, with her determina­ tion and Herb 's unfailing faith and sup­

When World War II ended and pri­ vate flying could resume , Louise con­ tinued to fly. She devoted much of her time to the Civil Air Patrol, performing search and rescue missions over the Virginia and North Carolina mountains and plateaus . One of her proudest achievements for the Civil Air patrol was the development and expansion of the Virginia Cadet Program . Her great joy was always not only to do the best she could do, but to encourage her chil­ dren, and other youths to greater heights. She rose to the rank of Lt. Colonel. Somehow she managed to find time from her work with Thaden Engineer­ ing Company to serve on the Depart­ ment of Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Service. She con­ tinued as a Red Cross volunteer worker and supported her beloved 99s as a race official. Her only venture back into competitive flying was to give daugh­ ter, Pat the fun and experience of act­ ing as her copilot in the 1950 Interna­ tional Women's Air Race. The bor­ rowed Taylorcraft , the only ship in the race without a radio (or starter!), re­ quired special dispensation for land­ ings and take-offs at the race points. Fog covered the greater part of the route from Montreal , Canada to West Palm Beach , Florida. Due to Pat ' s youthful exuberance, Louise pressed on. They finished in fifth place after two nerve-wracking days in dubious VFR! Louise had many offers to fly jet air­ craft. She waited to share thi s elation with Bill . He was thrilled and proud during his Air Force stint to fly with her in a T-33 . Later, they also shared her first glider flight. She was active in life 's pursuits until her death in November 1979 , just three days before her 74th birthday . She said near the end of life, "You know, life stays a challenge as you look around and find the challenges. And that's what life is about, I guess. It has to be about something, so it's about chal­ lenges . So long as you can find time , you stay very much alive." And that she did . Truly , a race well run . • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 19


A JOURNAL Part 4 by George Quast (EAA 123836, Ale 8885)

February 10, 1984 I had written to Ben Owen , EAA's director of information services to ask if he might help me locate and photo­ copy the May 1962 issue of SPORT A VIA nON which had my C-2, NC 10303 on the cover. Dave McClure told me about it. Today Ben sent me an original copy of this issue and sure enough, there was Dave McClure and that special smile of his right smack on the cover with the yellow and black C-2.

February 11, 1984 We took a wing dnwn from the north wall of the hangar, cleaned and in­ spected the bare wood and metal fit­ tings and pronounced it all sound. Then we made plans to cover the first wing . Jim wanted to suspend it by ropes from the ceiling. He tied a steel

wrench on the end of a small nylon rope and before his son, Butch or I could move into position and give him a hand, he twirled the rope around and sent the wrench flying toward a steel rafter. The wrench ricocheted straight down, however, picking up speed on the way and hit the ribs of the wing . This upset Jim and he threw a tantrum, along with a wastepaper basket against some hangar junk. It reminded me of how the Tasmanian Devil reacted when Buggs Bunny frustrates him on the Saturday morning cartoons . Jim went into his office, closed the door behind him and began to do some early spring office remodeling . I could hear the noise of another waste basket being physically abused but could only im­ agine what was actually going on . When the smoke cleared, Jim emerged from the office and declared he was

going home and his son was to get his "hinder" into the car. For once, Butch didn't ask a single question. I stayed after and surveyed the of­ fice, pounded out the dented waste bas­ kets, swept the floor and checked the damage to the wing . It wasn't that bad so I repaired it and while the glue was setting, went home to retrieve a long ladder to hang two ropes from the shop ceiling. I closed the shop and went home to get ready to go to the Min­ nesota Antique Flyer's banquet that night in the Twin Cities. The next morning, before Sunday School , I drove out to the airport to see what my rib repair looked like and found, to my surprise, that the wing had been mys­ teriously covered with fabric. It must have been done by hangar elves - or maybe one big bearded spook.

February 16, 1984 Jim taught me how to tie the modified seine knot to complete a rib stitch. With the re-covering manual close by, I made my stitches close enough to­ gether to exceed the 200-mph safety speed stress limit. We spread fabric tape over the stitches and sprayed the whole wing with butyrate dope. When both wings were finished through dope, we hung them on the north wall again. Augie Wegner sent along a few tips about painting and he was happy that I had gotten in touch with so many folks. If he could come up with any­ thing, he'd let me know.

February 27, 1984 Robert C. Mikesh, Senior Curator Aeronautics, Smithsonian Institution sent a postcard saying that the informa­ tion on the C-2 decal had been located and that I would be hearing from Jay Spenser.

March 5, 1984

Starting for EAA Oshkosh '84. Max had to stay ho

Finally, after a few months, several phone calls, lots of letters and head­ scratching sessions , I received a letter from Jay Spenser and he enclosed the proper color transparency of an Aeronca C-2 tail decal. There was no charge for this transparency since it was through my questions that they realized they had the wrong decal in their files. Jay was going to send the color separations so I could use them to have a new decal made. He closed by giving his best to Max. I sent photos of the painted fuselage to several people, just to let them know how far along I was and what was hap­ pening with the project.

Rib stitching Stits fabric to wooden ribs.

March 6, 1984 John Rice, from Spicer, Minnesota sent a card thanking me for the photo I sent him of the fuselage and he in­ cluded a photo of his latest project , a Waco HRE. John is a member of the Minnesota Antique Flyers and flew with my father in the 1930s. He is a licensed examiner and gave my father one of his check rides on December 13, 1947 and licensed me on June 29 , 1972.

March 13, 1984 received a postcard from Augie Wegner. He sent me the name and ad­ dress of Duane Berke, of Black Hawk , South Dakota. Duane is the owner of Aeronca Champ N 2259E, sin 7 AC­ 5833 - the plane in which my father soloed. I had taken the registration number from an early photo and sent it to Augie to see if he might have in­ formation on its whereabouts. Russ Borton sent a letter on this date and enclosed two sheets of diagrams on how to form aileron skins, using a home-made jig press to form the folds in the skins. I sent Russ a photo of the painted fuselage and he made some wisecrack about all the snow in the background. Russ helped in making new aileron skins for the EAA Avia­ tion Foundation's C-3 and his chapter was now working on an L-19 .

March 14, 1984 Ben Owen thanked me for the pic­ ture of the C-2 that I sent him and would appreciate if I would write an article on the rebuilding process, some

of the history of the airplane and send some good pictures. I got a postcard from Erwin Eshel­ man. On the front of the card were two sunbathers on the beaches of Florida and Erwin told me that he had atended the EAA Sun 'n Fun fly-in at Lake­ land, Florida but there were no C-2s, C-3s or K Models there.

March 16, 1984 Dale Wolford, from Ashland , Ohio had called me and asked about my C-2. I sent him some information and he wrote back today, thanked me for the photos I had sent him on the C-2's wing assembly and asked for more data on front and rear spar thickness. His group got a fuselage, sin 66, with tail feathers , five engines (two 107s and three 113s), condition unknown but re­ ported that one of the E-113 engines ran . They were rebuilding a complete new set of wings and going to use the tripod landing gear until the plane would be moved to a museum with its original straight axle.

March 21, 1984 My E-113C engine, manufacturer's number A-II88 was stored in the fur­ nace room at the hangar after being removed from the fuselage in March 1983 by the hangar vigilantes . Today I found an old hand-made, 2x4 engine stand in the storage hangar, bought some steel strapping from Jerbeck's Machine Shop and mounted the engine on the stand. I borrowed a plastic gas tank from Butch's ultralight and con­ nected the throttle, oil pressure gauge,

oil temperature gauge, tachometer and ignition switch to the engine stand by wire and electrical tape . The gas line from the engine was attached to the gas line from the plastic tank with a vise-grip. The Flottorp propeller, hav­ ing been cleaned, revamished and polished was bolted to the engine. A mixture of gasoline and oil was poured into the tank, crankcase oil level checked and rocker arms greased. I checked the engine manual that Buck Hilbert had sent and reviewed the sec­ tion on engine starting. With the gasoline on and the spark plug wires off, I pulled the prop through a few times. I opened the throttle and prop­ ped some more until the engine sounded good and squishy with gasoline now dripping out the bottom of the carburetor. The squishy, slurpy sound was identical to the noise Dave Pershau makes when he's got a head cold . We pushed the engine and stand out­ side the hangar and Jim, with stocking cap pulled down close over his head, pulled the prop over twice. On the third pull, at exactly 4:40 pm, the engine came to life with a few pops and a cough of smoke. Jim hollered at me to quick take a picture and "get the heck over here and hold onto the engine stand." The left cylinder wasn't firing properly. It had good spark but some­ thing was wrong that we couldn ' t see. But, at least we started the engine on this special day, which just happened to be Joe Dooley's birthday, too .

March 24, 1984 Dale Wolford sent a photocopy of an article taken from the July 1958 issue of AMERICAN AIRMAN, titled "Meet Airman Antiquers, the McClure Brothers." A portion of the article tells more about Dave McClure: "Marion and Dave McClure of Bloomington, Illinois are brother an­ tiquers who engaged in this hobby in a big and very steady way. Both started by building models in the thirties and the interest continued up to World War II. "Dave entered the Air Force, ended up with the 8th Air Force and a fighter­ bomber squadron flying P-47 Thunder­ bolts in England. He flew 77 missions and is credited with one Focke-Wulf, plus many ground targets such as tanks and trains. "Unable to repress his desire to get into old airplanes very long, Dave pur­ chased an Aeronca C-3 in Missouri, towed it home and restored it in jig time. Dave recently purchased an VINTAGE AIRPLANE 21

Aeronca C-2 which is his present pro­ ject. Dave's transition from P-47s, Swifts, 140s and Seabees to a C-3 is of special interest. The C-3 has a big job hauling him around, since Dave is a man weighing well over 200 pounds . "At our Fly-in last year, Dave won the 'Flying Birdcage Race' with his C­ 3 and Marion was awarded the R.L. Taylor Trophy in the best Ultra-Light Aircraft class with his Wiley Post."

March 30, 1984 I thought about making new aileron skins and today Dale Wolford sent me the address of Factory and Steel Metal Supply in Highland Park, Michigan . These people had the correct aluminum to use in making ailerons . Some restorers were using aluminum gutter material. Dave McClure sent a letter explain­ ing to me how to grease the wheel bearing . We had problems, not know­ ing how to pull apart the wheels with­ out damaging them, only to learn that steel pins had to be drilled out and re­ placed at every greasing . Dave said, because of very little weight on these bearings, they stood up pretty well. He also attended the EAA Sun 'n Fun fly­ in this year in Florida but saw no early Aeroncas .

Jim hollered, "Take the picture and get over here and help hold the stand!"

April 5, 1984 At the time I refinished the Flottorp propeller, I wanted to preserve its decal from the Anderson Propeller Com­ pany. Before sanding off the decal , I took a photo of it and wrote the com­ pany to see if anyone there could tell me something about it. I received a letter today telling me that the Flottorp Propeller Company was out of busi­ ness and that Anderson had a com­ pletely different decal from the one in the picture I sent.

The Anderson Propeller Co. decal on the Flollorp propeller.

April 10, 1984 Jim and I dismantled the cylinders from the engine today. Upon inspec­ tion of the left cylinder, Jim pointed out that, "Somewhere, somebody had a forced landing," because of an inden­ tation made in the tip of the cylinder from a broken valve head. Jim also dis­ covered that the exhaust valve on the left cylinder was unable to close com­ pletely and this caused the engine to run rough on our test start. Pistons and cylinders were then sent to Hutchinson Wholesale Supply Company where valves, guides, cylinders, pistons and rings were all put in A-I condition by Bob and Scott Powell. The oil rings were the same as those found on early Reo truck engines . 22 MAY 1989

The engine running on the covered fuselage looked like a 36-hp pup-tent.

April 30, 1984 A new record snowfall was set today - 98 .5 inches of snow in a season. I thought I did a lot of shoveling this year! Jim and I stripped all the paint off the crankcase and repainted it in Aeronca orange and the cylinders in black. We connected the pistons and Jim showed me how to nick the skin off the tips of your fingers when put­ ting one cylinder over the pistons and rings . I'm not a fast learner so he took some more skin off finishing up the second cylinder. After the rods and valves were replaced, adjusted and greased, we re-attached the engine to the fuselage and added the propeller. After connecting the instruments, fuel line and timing the magneto, we were ready to start the engine again. It started with good compression from the cylinders and ran with a good steady "one-two, one-two" beat. The C-2 looked like a motorized, one-man pup tent with wheels . The idling en­ gine sounded like that of a two-cylin­ der, John Deere A tractor - slow but steady. I learned how to start the C-2 engine by myself after tying the tail down so she wouldn ' t get away from me . The engine and fuselage were then covered with bed sheets to protect them from bird droppings and then I rolled it into Joe Dooley's hangar, next to his KR-l. No more work was done on the airplane until late summer.

hopped over a small retammg fence and "looked her all over!" Buck is truly a character and I got my picture taken with him. The next morning he gave rides in his Swallow to media members of NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Magazine and people from the Smith­ sonian Institution. Erwin Eshelman was at the Conven­ tion but I was unable to find him . Joe Dooley, Dave Pershau , Jim Wechman and Butch were there and in the even­ ings I'd check in over at Jim's motor home, just to tell him what I had learned that day. Whatever questions I had about old airplanes and how to fix 'em, this was the place to get the an­ swers. For the next few days I over­ dosed on people, food and airplanes.

August 14, 1984 John Houser from Aeronca Inc. wrote asking if NC 10303 was for sale and if it was; was it currently licensed?; assembled or dismantled?; type of en­ gine installed and approximate time on it?; airframe complete?; general condi­ tion?; and approximate value and ask­ ing price? The C-2 was not for sale.

August 29, 1984 John Houser wrote back thanking me for my response to his inquiry. He would appreciate a small photo when I got the C-2 flying again , and I was to keep him advised on the progress. John wished me luck.

July 28 through August 2, 1984 I went to the EAA Convention in Oshkosh on my motorcycle and fi ve minutes after reaching the campground entrance, I lost my camera. It was returned 24 hours later. I set up my 12 x 12 umbrella tent along with the trailers and motor homes of the Min­ nesota Antique Flyers. They adopted me for the week, making it perfectly clear that I was to be back at the camp­ site at 7:30 sharp for supper. I enjoyed myself so much. I finally met Buck Hilbert face-to-face. He was in a part of the afternoon air show and when he landed I walked over to him. I introduced myself and he said , "Shoot, I thought you were older!" We climbed into his Model A convertible and drove over to the EAA Museum , entered through a back door into the shop area and out to the display floor where the EAA Aviation Foundation's C-2 was standing . "Get up there and take a look at her," Buck said, so I

Buck told me, ·Shoot, I thought you were older!"

EAA campground, Oshkosh '84. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 23

September 11, 1984 discovered that the gas tank was leaking. Before I painted it , I had the seams resoldered as a precaution, but still it developed a pinhole leak . This time, I sloshed the inside of the gas tank with Randolph's gas-tank slosh­ ing compound. The tank was then re­ painted .

The uncovered left wing.

Covered with Stits.

The painted wing with number stencils in place. Max doesn't look too excited 24 MAY 1989

September 26, 1984 The left wing was removed from the north wall of the shop hangar and hung from nylon ropes extending from the steel rafters. Saw horses were used to lay the wing on its flat side. Already covered with butyrate dope, the wing was inspected, cleaned and then sprayed with 1980 Ditzler sealer. We wet-sanded and inspected it before Jim sprayed the first coat of orange paint. More wet-sanding followed and then I sprayed the next coat of orange. Early Aeronca C-2s and C-3s had round registration numbers rather than the square block letters and numbers called for by the CAA . Aeronca was among the few that used round letters without strong protest by the govern­ ment, so I made up my own stencils in round letters and numbers . Tracing the stencils on the wing, taping the outline and painting black on orange gave me a beautiful finished wing. October 2, 1984 By this time, I was doing all of the painting myself which left Jim able to sit back and watch his current student. The right wing was prepared the same as the left. Upon sanding the front wooden spar in the area where it at­ taches to the fuselage, I discovered three coatings of paint. From the out­ side in, the colors were yellow, red and finally true Aeronca orange . The orange matched the color on the cover of Jay Spenser's book on the C-2, which is the color we were using . I painted the wings very early in the morning. I would arrive at the airport before 5:00 am, wet down the floor with water to keep the dust down , mix the paint and make sure the tempera­ ture was in the correct painting range . I did the painting and cleaning up after­ wards, all before Jim came to work from his school bus route. When both wings were finished , I had a complete wardrobe of orange, yellow and black clothes. Shirts, T-shirts, long under­ wear and eyeglasses all had little flecks of paint in them . Jim even painted my shoes orange.

I sprayed the registration numbers in black paint.

October 18, 1984 Dale Wolford wrote and told me that their fuselage was ready to cover and one wing was ready to assemble. He asked what colors I arrived at to dupli­ cate the Smithsonian color scheme . I told him of the paint that I discovered on the wing spar and gave him the numbers of the Ditzler paint that I was using. October 27, 1984 Jim, David and I attached the painted wings to the fuselage . We ad­ justed the flying wires, attached the ail­ erons and placed the cowling around the engine . The C-2 was wheeled out­ side for a picture. It was almost com­ plete with only the gas tank, windshield and greenhouse wing cowl­ ing to be added . There were a few little adjustments to be made on the flying wires and control cables. We covered the airplane with sheets and rolled it back into Joe Dooley's hangar. It wouldn't be long now . •

to be concluded next month ...


An information exchange column with input from readers. all the help you gave me when I blew my engine on the L-2 and deadsticked into your airport. I tell that story many times and how much help you were. So on behalf of myself and my family, we wish to extend to you a very Happy Holiday Season and heartfelt thanks . You're never forgotten. Thanks. Sincerely, Chuck Kessler & Family Litchfield, Illinois

by Buck Hilbert (EM 21, Ale 5)

P.o. Box 424 Union, IL 60180

FROM THE MAILBAG ... Dear Buck and Dorothy, We missed you at OSH this year, in fact we looked real hard to find anyone we know. Is there a message there! We flew the Luscombe 8E back and worked it real well. I think I'll stick to these modem birds for cross country . The big thing for us this year is the Canuck flew on June 23, 1988 and all went well. I love flying the old girl, it's really a good old bird, not very crisp but fun. It now has 12 hours and flew 15 passengers before I winterized it. The current project in the shop is an Aeronca C-2, sIn 71 - could fly in '89 if we don't get too busy with the IN. Is there a source of 113C parts? I've wanted one of these little C-birds ever since I sold my first one. "Over to you," Buck and Dorothy, Skeeter and Doris (Carlson) Spokane , Washington 26 MAY 1989

Buck, I was just reading the December 1988 issue of VINTAGE AIRPLANE and always enjoy your column. During the holiday season we give thanks for a lot of things and it comes to mind,

Dear Mr. Hilbert, I enjoyed your story about the Por­ terfield 35-70 - and it took me back some years - a lot of years , that is . I had an opportunity to fly one several times and I still remember what a nice flying bird. I learned about the trim crank on the first hop. Yep, that's right - I hit the throttle with my big fat elbow reaching for the trim crank in the aft seat. This was at about 25 feet over the sage brush of New Mexico. Shocking? Yes! But due to youth etc . I caught it in plenty of time. That sud­ den quiet was an experience . This would be about 1941 or '42. The only bird I have now is a Luscombe 8E, 10 these many years - since 1960. I enjoy your column. Sincerely, Joe Yoakum Forth Worth, Texas Skeeter and Dorts's L.<:Ilru,..".,·"

Dear Buck, I have just read your column in the February issue. It was interesting. Now here is a question to which no one around here seems to know the an­ swer. We read that the FAA inspectors are requiring an FCC license for the ELT. So probably that means , if you just have an ELT and nothing else, you need a license to transmit. Now the question is, if you have another trans­ mitter in the plane, and it is licensed by the FCC, do you need an additional license to transmit on the ELT? If you have more than one transmitter in a plane (not counting the ELT) do you need an FCC license for each transmit­ •ter? This question is probably of little interest to most. Still, I'd like to get it squared away in my mind so those who ask me can get the correct answer. Can you help? Best,

Howard C. Holman

Sky Ranch

Wayne, Maine

P.S. On seniority: notice by your EAA and AlC numbers that you have

me beat- by several years . Hello Howard, Good to hear from you again . Your question about the FCC station license is a good one. Not everyone realizes that the ELT is a transmitter and that it dOeS require a license. Regardless of how we think about it, with the en­ forcement program going on today, it's best that you get one. If you've got other radio equipment in the airplane, the ELT is covered by your station license. The airplane becomes a radio station and you could have three or four radios installed and they 'd all be covered by the one station license. If any of those Champs and Lus­ combes without electrical systems are to be legal , they MUST have that sta­ tion license. Get one of them little green applications and get it in the mill. I don't think I'm so senior at EAA. My number is 21. That just proves I waited a while to see how things were gonna go before I signed up. As for the AlC Division, that was started to ensure us Antiquers & Classic people a place to park at the Convention. Back


and fro ..

by Edlock Hart Sometime Friday morning, June 5, 1987 three intrepid airplanes rose from Gillespie , California's longest runway in a collective attempt to reach Merced on the very same day. They chose this particular Friday, as no other one would allow them to attend Merced's 30th annual fly-in . The covey consisted of one Stits Skycoupe, one Pietenpol and one RampTrampChamp. The pilots were Lance Harmon in the Stits , Manuel Sparks in the Pietenpol and me, Edlock Hart in the Champ. This motley mix

was a good one. All three cruised as slow as each other, had armstrong star­ ters and such (except for Lance's Stits which did have electrics, but Sparky's Pietenpol balanced that out by having no brakes). Our first scheduled stop arrived on schedule at Sanfer Nando - White- ' man Airpark , specifically because they serve 80-octane and breakfast. Also because Sparky knew how to outfox the local TCAs , ARSAs and FARs to get there. Everybody at Whiteman welcomed Sparky like a long-lost soul,

in the old days when it was "first­ come, first-park," there was an endless variety of airplanes in each row. There'd be a homebuilt, then a war­ bird, maybe an antique and then a Champ or something. They weren't grouped as type or make or anything. I thought it was great but obviously birds of a feather want to flock. We approached Paul Poberezny with the idea of segregating the antiques and classics and he said, "Fine, but you provide your own manpower and park­ ing!" That was the beginning of the division . Dave Jameson was the first president and I was the second. We decided to weld the thing together the second year so we could assign respon­ sibilities and better organize the park­ ing and registration . That was the be­ ginning of the membership and the by­ laws and all the rest of the stuff that goes with getting organized . I took number 5, again because I was a latecomer. I wasn't too sure this thing would catch on . Over to you , Buck

partly because he was based there years ago, but mostly because Sparky is Sparky. We planned to refuel at Delano and we did because we got there. Uphill all the way to Gorman was unusually un­ turbulent and clear enough to see through. RampTramp climbed easily enough to see ahead, crowflying miles off the highway route. This kept the Champ abreast of Lance and Sparky, even though it crossed the gap at Gor­ man from a vantage point 1,500 feet above them. The excess altitude was traded for airspeed and shenanigans . Communication spiced the journey with sense and nonsense. From Delano to Merced our altimet­ ers went berserk. They refused to indi­ cate downhill all the way, which this last leg was. Visibility was so good that the unlikelihoodedness of getting lost increased to where we couldn't. Remember, our aim was to arrive the same day and we did, mainly be­ cause going downhill flew us so fast we arrove far before nightfall finally fell. As a matter of actual fact, noon was only an hour-and-a-half old when we landed.

MORE SAID OF MERCED, 1988 The RampTrampChamp flew home from Merced this year, mainly be­ cause, like last year, it had gotten VINTAGE AIRPLANE 27

there. Sparky and Lance arrived this year too, but in Lance's newly pur­ chased Beech Musketeer, which doesn't assoc iate much with Champs, except on the ground . The Champ liked the show , the planes and friendly people as much as before. We left for home on Sunday in clear, cool air. Stopping for 80-octane at Bakersfield Airpark surpri sed us a lot more than if it hadn 't. Parked on the line was a Bird (Joe Griffith), an N3N (Les and Nancy DeLine) , a T­ Craft (Jim McCormick) , a 150 (Bill Dutton and Carol) and room to park the RampTramp! Assembled at a large round table, this happy group made room for Ed­ lock . There was no dearth of mirth at this meal. Last year a similar happy

happenstance happened at Madera. So much more goodness than badness happens to and fro fly-in s, that fly -ins continue to be flown to, and fro. We intended to fl y home more or less as a flock , so the RampTramp arose first, being the easiest bird to catch up to. Scanning the sky unre­ warded my eye. Nothing was there but unoccupied air. Later I learned that the rest of the fl ock found they fl ew solo , too . The Champ picked a point between Gorman and Tehachapi, dead reckon­ ing to Cajon Pass. Helping to deaden the reckoning, its compass card reads, "For 360 degrees - steer 43 degrees." The cool air friskied all 65 horses. They galloped upstairs like a champ to 8,500 feet to see over the fast-forming

clouds above the mountains. The buil­ dup was too fast to dare fl y over, so I dove to get under and squeaked be­ tween peaks and clouds. Mojave con­ tinued to not show up on the far side of ridge after ridge until I wondered if it was lost. When it finally found itse lf, I slid down below the clouds, making Cajon Pass anti-climactic. Once through the pass, decent visibi lity made getting home to Gillespie even anti-c1imacticer, until a gust at touchdown put me and the RampTramp 30 degrees sideways . Taxiing in was worse, with throttle and and rudder twice saving the wingtips. It wasn't until shutting down at the hangar that anti-climax settled in to stay . •


The following is a partial listing of new members who have joined the EM Antique/Classic Division (through September 18, 1988). We are honored to welcome them into the organization whose members' common interest is vintage aircraft. Succeeding issues of THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE will contain additional listings of new members. Edgell, Gerald B. Skaneateles, New York

Flaharity, Larry R. Amari llo, Texas

Graves. Darrell A Worden, Illinois

Heard, Dan Jackson, MiSSissippi

Inge, Hutchins B.

Northridge, California

Egbert, Frank M. Kent. Ohio

Fleming, Robert E. Hamilton, Ontario

Grice, Bobby G. Snyder, Texas

Hellert, Henry Vincennes, Indiana

Int'I Civil Aviation Org.

Montreal, Quebec

Ehrenstrom, Ingemar Osterskar, Sweden

Foster, Geoffrey E. Santa Barbara, California

Griffer, Wade West Palm Beach, Florida

Hendershot, Markus E. Jonesburg, Missouri

Irwin, Thomas B.

Jupiter, Florida

Elkins. Jr., Waller Lake Charles, Louisiana

Francis. George Creston, Iowa

Grundeman, Sr, Fred D. Scandinavia, Wisconsin

Hendricks. Leroy Lansing, Kansas

Jablonski, Richard A Burlington, Connecticut

Elliott, John M. Tulsa, Oklahoma

Frumkin, Mark S. Hazelton, Pennsylvania

Guelde, John E. Earlville, Illinois

Henry, William E Cumming, Georgia

Jarnagin, William A

Miami. Florida

Ellis. T. L Emmetsburg, Iowa

Fulmer, James P. Diamond Bar, California

Gurney, Phil S. Oak Grove, Missouri

Hensley, Garry Topsham, Maine

Johnson, Craig Cumberland, Maryland

Elswick, James L St. Louis, Missouri

Fye, Michael S. Clintondale, New York

Gygax, Larry Waukesha, Wisconsin

Herring, Brian Lennoxville, Quebec

Emerson, D. Brandon, Manitoba

Gallagher, William J. Chalfont. Pennsylvania

Haarr, Thor Tacoma, Washington

Higgins. Harry G.

Tallahassee, Florida

Johnson, Greig E.

East Greenwich,

Rhode Island

Engelen, Antoine Westerlo, Belgium

Gambrell, Robert Columbia, South Carolina

Hall, Rowland L Northfield, Illinois

Hogan, Kenneth

Hicksville, New York

English, E. S. June Cross, South Carolina

Garrison, Raymond Loveland, Ohio

Hallenbeck, Seigle M. Satellite Beach, Florida

Holland, William M. Garrett Pari<. Maryland

Erikson, Gregory Bartlett, Illinois


Hans U. Beinwilam. Switzerland

Hamel, George W. Baltimore, Maryland

Hollister, Ashley

New York. New York

Evans. James C. Red Lion, Pennsylvania

Gillespie, Bob Silver Springs, Maryland

Hansen, Dale J. Somerset, Wisconsin

Holzer, Charles B.

Brown Mills, New Jersey

Eyler, Elvin H. Red Lion, Ohio

Gingerich, Sheldon E. Tucson, Arizona

Harnish, Thomas D. Wayne, Pennsylvania

Hooper, Clint

Wichita Falls, Texas

Fanning. Patrick T. Berkeley, California

Goar III, Everett Weatherford, Texas

Harris. Quentin Port Charlotte, Florida

Hoopes. Noel M.

Muscatine, Iowa

Farinha, Christopher Auburn, California

Gombert, Terry W. Boerne, Texas

Harris. William E. Miami, Florida

Hopkins. Mark

West Lafayette, Indiana

Felix, Frederick R. Pontiac, Michigan

Grady, James R. Grand Junction, Colorado

Hartis. John Spokane, Washington

Hower, Lynn

Idaho Falls, Idaho

Ferron, Arthur Manchester. Connecticul

Grantham. Frank Michael Dellsboro, North Carolina

Hartzog. Stewart D. Fort Pierce, Florida

Hufnagel, G. A

Bolinas, California

Fichera. Joseph Stevensville, Maryland

Graver, Gary William Sunnyvale, California

Headley, Thomas B. Madison, Alabama

Humphreys. Charles M. Berkeley, California

28 MAY 1989

Johnson, William L

Livermore, California

Julian, Thomas H.

Niceville, Florida

Jurries. Donald L Bloomington, Minnesota Juvet, Phillip A

Torrance, California

Karkau, Isabel

Los Gatos, California

Kass. Allan

Big Sky, Montana

Kaufman, Jr., Oliver

Trenton, Illinois

Kemp, Patrick

Fallbrook. California

Kennedy, Jay R.

Orlando, Flo rida

Kennedy, Ken

Purcell, Oklahoma

Left to Right -

Bill Schlapman, Munsil Williams and Jack Wojahn.

By volunteers of the Antique/Classic Press Committee Larry O'Attilio and Pamela Foard, Co-Chairmen (EM 150262, AlC 8265) 1820 N. 166th St. Brookfield, WI 53005

by Carl N. Pederson This pretty little airplane is a 1930 product of the Heath Aeroplane Com­ pany of Chicago, Illinois. The modem day Heathkit Company of Benton Har­ bor, Michigan is a direct descendant of the old aircraft business . Heath offered the Parasol in three flavors, factory­ built, plans and in kit form. Bill' s airplane is a factory offering. The Heath factory-built fuselage is con­ structed of welded-steel tubing. In the kit-built design , the fuselage tubing is held together with special connecting links. Peened-over, hardware-store nails pin these assemblies together. N752Y is equipped with a Continen­ tal A40 engine, as are most existing Parasols . The original powerplant for the Heath Parasol was a converted Henderson motorcycle engine, desig­ nated the Heath B4 . Several Ford

Model T, rear-axle parts were used in the crankshaft-to-propeller adaptation. The little four-banger was rated at 27 hp, but 20 was a more realistic output figure . Just how tiny is the Heath? Bill is a six-foot, 200-pound gentleman and it is impossible for him to fit into the cockpit and still operate the controls. His weight also brings the airplane over gross. The aircraft is flown by friend, Jack Wojahn, a very lucky guy. Bill acquired his Super Parasol about three and a half years ago from the estate of the late Bob Burge of In­ dianapolis, Indiana. In addition, he took over the duties as head honcho of the Heath Association. Nineteen of the 30 listed Parasols are in flying condi­ tion and five are in the process of resto­ ration. Incomplete data clouds the status of the remaining six.

Custom restoration of N752Y was professionally done in Michigan in 1971 . The major departures from an "as manufactured" Heath were the en­ gine and twin fuel tanks in the wing which were not of the proper vintage . The blue and silver paint job is realistic and Bill has redone the rudder logo to agree with the one used with a 25-foot wingspan version. (The Parasol also could be equipped with a 30-foot wing for high-altitude operation .) The Schlapmans live in Win­ neconne , Wisconsin where Bill , now retired, is in the process of restoring a deHavilland Tiger Moth. He also owns a Model 12D Taylorcraft and a basket­ ful of parts for another Heath Parasol that he intends to restore as a 30-foot­ wing version. He is a member of Osh­ kosh Chapter 252 of EAA and has been flying for 10 years . • VINTAGE AIRPLANE 29



EAA Membership in the Experimental Aircraft Association, Inc. is $30.00 for one year, including 12 issues of Sport A viation. Junior Membership (under 19 years of age) is available at $18.00 annually. Family Member­ ship is available for an additional $10.00 annually.

Where The Sellers and Buyers Meet... 25¢ per word, $5.00 minimum charge. Send your ad to The Vintage Trader, Wittman Regional Airport Oshkosh, WI 54903-2591.


EAA Member - $18.00. Includes PLANS: one year membership in EAA An­ POBER PIXIE - VW powered parasol- unlimited tique-Classic Division, 12 monthly in low·cost pleasure flying. Big, roomy cockpit for issues of The Vintage Airplane and the over six foot pilot. VW power insures hard to membership card. Applicant must beat 3V2 gph at cruise setting. 15 large instruction be a current EAA member and must sheets. Plans - $60.00. Info Pack - $5.00. Send give EAA membership number. check or money order to : ACRO SPORT, INC., Box 462, Hales Corners, WI 53130. 414/529·2609.

Non-EAA Member - $28.00. In­ cludes one year membership in the ACRO SPORT - Single place biplane capable of unlimited aerobatics. 23 sheets of clear, easy to EAA Antique-Classic Division, 12 follow plans includes nearly 100 isometrical draw­ monthly issues of The Vintage Air­ ings, photos and exploded views. Complete parts plane, one year membership in the and materials list. Full size wing drawings. Plans EAA and separate membership plus 139 page Builder's Manual - $60.00. Info cards. Sport Aviation not included. Pack - $5.00. Super Acro Sport Wing Drawing ­


$15.00. The Technique of Aircraft Building ­ $12.00 plus $2.50 postage. Send check or money order to : ACRO SPORT, INC., Box 462, Hales Corners, WI 53130. 414/529-2609.

Membership in the International Aerobatic Club, Inc. is $25.00 an­ nually which includes 12 issues of Sport Aerobatics. All lAC members are required to be members of EAA.

ENGINES: WARBIRDS Membership in the Warbirds of America , Inc . is $25 .00 per year , which includes a subscription to Warbirds. Warbird members are required to be members of EAA.


160 hp Gnome - extra cylinders and prop hub; remarkable inside (run once). Missing push rods. Rusty casing, in original crate. 215/340-9760 or 215/340-9133.



MISCELLANEOUS: Super Cub PA18 fuselages repaired or rebuilt - in precision master fixtures. Ali makes of tube assemblies or fuselages repaired or fabricated new. J. E. Soares Inc., 7093 Dry Creek Road , Bel­ grade, Montana 59714, 406/388-6069 , Repair Sta­ tion D65-21. (c/12-89)

Make checks payable to EAA or the division in which membership is desired. Address all letters to EAA For Sale - Tail wheel tire - Uniroyal Type 1. or the particular division at the fol­ 10.00 (outside diameter), 8-ply rating , streamline lowing address: profile. Smooth rubber finish, 3-3/8 inch wide x


OSHKOSH, WI 54903-3086

PHONE (414) 426-4800


8:15-5:00 MON.-FRI.

30 MAY 1989

(2) C-3 Aeronca Razorbacks, 1931 and 1934. Pack­ age includes extra engine and spares. Fuselage, wing spars and extra props. Museum quality! $30,000 firm! Hisso 180-hp Model "E". 0 SMOH with prop and hub and stacks. Best offer over $10,000. 1936 Porterfield 35-70, the lowest time Antique ever! Less than 200 hrs. ITA & E. 20 hours on engine. $12,500. No tire kickers, collect calis or pen pals, please! E.E. "Buck" Hilbert, P.O. Box 424, Union , Illinois 60180-0424.

POSITION/EMPLOYMENT: AIRFRAME and powerplant instructor for past 22 years, A&P school in central California, desires change. 30 years experience in antique aircraft re­ storation, Command-Aire, Waco, Stearman, Fair­ child, Aeronca, Cessna, Piper, Taylorcraft, etc. Ex­ celient craftsman in sheet metal, steel tube, wood structures, fabric (Grand A and Stits my specialty). Have shop, wili take sub contract work for individu­ als or museums. Or wili relocate for employment. Resume on request. ROBERT G. LOCK, 19342 E. South Avenue, Reedley, California, 209/638-4235. (5-2)

WANTED: Continental A-40 - no time since top overhaul. Complete and crated . You Ship. $1 ,250. 3121742­ 2041. (5-1)

EAA membership and EAA EXPERI­ MENTER magazine is available for $28.00 per year (Sport Aviation not Franklin - 165 hp HC, 300 SMOH. Wood Sen­ included). Current EAA members senich propeller. $2,500. 619/346-6834 . (5-1) may receive EAA EXPERIMENTER for $18.00 per year.

Please submit your remittance with a check or draft drawn on a United States bank payable in United States dollars.


3-1 /4 inch bead diameter. Used on smail multi-en­ gine and larger single Howard/190. Main tires ­ flight custom 6.50 x 10. 8 PR only 50 landings. Replaced with antique original style tires. Fits C­ 310/190-95. Doug Combs, Box 6613, Incline Vil­ lage, Nevada 89450, 6021994-4522. (5-1)

Wanted: Cont. A-40, Aeronca E-113 engines. Complete or partial. Harold Buck, Box 868, Colum­ bus, GA 31902, 414/322-1314. (5-2) Wedell Williams Aviation Museum wants to lo­ cate a Lockheed " Vega" in any condition . Will check all leads. Information to P.O. Box 655, Pat­ terson, LA 70392. (5-2) WANTED - Warner 145 Crankshaft with splines. Will trade tapershaft type and cash or cash only. Both of my propellers are splined - need your help. Contact: Doug Combs, Box 6613, Incline Vil­ lage, Nevada 89450, 602/994-4522. (5-1) WANTED - C85-8F/FJ. Cash for reasonable price running with log. Also, any parts for Aeronca L-16. Ed Jarnagin, 8125 S.W. 205 Terrace, Miami, FL 33189,305/232-8936. (6-2)

TOOLS: Tools, hand & power for all aircraft work. Rivet­ ers - Drilis - Fasteners - Accessories - Tool Kits. Everything for the kit builder - 96-page catalog available. $2.00 (refundable with first order). U. S. Industrial Tool & Supply Company, 15159 Cleat Street, Plymouth, MI 48170. Call toil-free 1-800­ 521-4800. (4/89-6)










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ANTIQUES &. CLASSICS Gather in KENOSHA, WISCONSIN the weekend before the EAA Convention in Oshkosh. Come JULY 21-JULY 23.



• Fabulous Airshow • Great On-Ground Displays • Plus ... Terrific Friends! MEMBER

LAST YEAR'S FLIGHTFEST DREW MORE THAN 100,000 VISITORS! For more information. contact: Bob Carlson 414·656-1846 or Dennis Eiler Kenosha Municipal Airport 9900 - 52nd Street Kenosha.VVl53140 (414J 656-8158

32 MAY 1989





"Who can make a fast deci­ sion when I need it most?" It's one of the most impor­ tant questions you should ask yourself before you buy aviation insurance. Most independent agents are very good. But no matter how good they are, they may not be able to answer your tough questions without first "checking in" with the insurance company. So if you have a claim, need a quote or just want a quick "yes or no", you could be left waiting for a return call. As a direct writer, your AVEMCO sales underwriter has the authority to make most quoting and binding decisions on the spot. So when you need that extra coverage, additional pilot or just have a last-minute coverage question, you're speaking to the source.

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Aviation Insurance For Aviation People.

by George Hardie Jr.

This neat-looking amphibian was a one-off product of a well-known air­ craft manufacturing company in the pre-Depression years. The photo was taken at some aircraft show, date and location unknown. Answers will be published in the August 1989 issue of VINTAGE AIRPLANE. Deadline for that issue is June 10, 1989. Some readers were not fooled by the view of the February Mystery Plane. Henry Hellert of Vincennes, Indiana writes: "It's an Emsco 'Artic Tern,' named for an Alaskan seagull. It was designed for a specific purpose - to be used by oil companies for Alaskan photo-map­ ping . "The pilot sat high , in what resem­ bled a tail-less Boeing P-26 fuselage , so that he could check water ahead dur­ ing taxiing . Photographers were situated in what looked like upside down bathtubs above the EDO floats . Wing was a standard Lockheed 'Sirius' and the tail was from a Lockheed 'Vega.' Only one was built and it was lost due to an engine failure on a low altitude flight." Thomas L. Palmer and J.D . Brown 34 MAY 1989

of the Wedell-Williams Memorial Foundation, Patterson, Louisiana added this : "The Mystery Plane in the February issue is the 'Arctic Tern,' built by Charles F. Rocheville in the 1930s to do aerial survey work in Alaska for Shell Oil Company. Unfortunately, the 'Tern' did not have a chance to do the job it was built for. After a flight for Shell Oil Company photographers, the engine quit and a forced landing de­

stroyed the aircraft. " Other answers were received from Jack McRae, Huntington Station, New York; R.L. May, Butler, Pennsyl­ vania; LeRoy H. Brown, Zellwood, Florida; Robert E. Nelson , Bismarck, North Dakota; John C. Nordt , III, North Miami, Florida and Robert Lingenfelter who sent two additional pictures - taken before and after the crash. Reference : WINGS, June 1973 and AIR POWER, July 1973 .'.

Arctic Tern

EMsCO ,.

ARcnc TfRtf'

If"lkiP Pen and ink drawing by Henry Heller!.



Rober! Lingenfelter sent these pictures taken before and after the Tern's disastrous flight. VINTAGE AIRPLANE 35