VA Vol 9 No 2 Feb 1981

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VA Vol 9 No 2 Feb 1981
STRAIGHT AND LEVEL By Brad Thomas
By Brad Thomas President Antique/Classic Division January arrived unceremoniously and those of us
in the eastern half of the USA are suffering from ex­
treme, sub-normal temperatures. Not many of our an­
tiques and classics will be flying or operated during
these periods of bone-chilling cold. A few fortunate
owners have heated hangars or pre-heating facilities
to warm up their engines before flying, but the bulk of
us just allow our aircraft to rest until the conditions
improve for near-normal flight conditions. Some of us
who had the time were able to enjoy the warmer cli­
mate for a brief holiday relaxation period and yours
truly accepted an invitation from a good friend to spend
a few days with them in Key West, Florida.
Being North Carolinians, we expect the day after
Christmas to be chilly but not overtaxed with the ex­
tremely cold temperatures we have been experiencing.
Arriving at the airport we loaded the luggage into our
"spam can" and soon realized the temperature was 6° F!
With the help of jumper cables and an extra battery,
fifteen minutes of attempts, a few sputters, and cool­
ing time for the starter she did fire, and away we flew
to St. Augustine, Florida for our midpoint refueling
stop .
St. Augustine has a fine airport, an EAA Chapter,
many antique, classic and custombuilt aircraft, together
with a fine group of pilots who were all sitting in the
lounge, sporting winter apparel. Abnormally low tem­
peratures had invaded this section of Florida and power
failures were frequent as the locals had purchased and
were utilizing small portable electric heaters in their
homes and businesses, thus over-taxing the supply of
electricity. We departed, wishing them success in get­
ting their power restored. Being vectored west of Vero
Beach and then direct to Key West we experienced a
most pleasant trip over central Florida and into Key
West International airport. Our visit to this historic
area was our first and we enjoyed the fishing, sight­
seeing and even a ride on the Young America replica
sailing vessel, sporting full sails in 15 knot winds.
Florida has a lot to offer during the winter months
and this brings to our attention the upcoming big event
in Lakeland, Florida on March 15-22. This will be the
Seventh Annual Sun 'n Fun Fly-In. Mark these dates
on your calendar and make plans to be there. Some of
us have attended the six previous events and have
watched with admiration the great success these fine
people have achieved through their endeavors to make
this annual event a continuing success. All you could
desire is available: camping on the site, daily fly-bys,
air shows, exhibits, forums, and warm weather. So many
of us get "cabin fever" during the winter months, that
even the thought of traveling to the warm climates
and participating in the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In make the
pleasant spring days appear closer.
Those of you who are not flying your antique or
classic because of the winter weather , why not enter
into a progressive maintenance program on the bird
while it rests. While the time is available , clean the
engine, check the wiring and plugs, fabric, cotter pins,
bolt torques, lubricate needed parts and hinges, and
give the plane a general overall look-see.
I have never checked my aircraft without finding
some item, small as it may be, which did not need at­
tention relative to maintenance or replacement. Elimi­
nate errors by using a check list made up by yourself
or the one supplied by the manufacturer, if available.
We frequently have seen many aircraft parked during
the winter with the tires deflated to about one half
of normal. The use of a portable air tank or even a hand
pump and a tire gauge will keep those tires at the proper
inflation and will definitely help to eliminate cracking
of the walls. If the fuel tanks are not full, then routinely
drain the sumps to remove any possible accumulation
of water that may collect during the cold winter months.
It will not be long before March arrives and we can have
that aircraft ready for the trip to Lakeland or just to
fly around the patch when spring does arrive.
We have received several fine comments from our
membership regarding methods to increase our mem­
bership and enhance our image. Some of the sugges­
tions and proposals are new and will be considered at
the Board of Directors meetings. We probably cannot
initiate every proposal that has been suggested, but
after each has been analyzed, a pattern of thoughts
will emerge, giving us guidance in planning for the
future .
We are a unique group of dedicated enthusiasts
whose purpose is to encourage the restoration , mainte­
nance and flight of antique and classic aircraft; also
to compile information about these planes and continue
to record the history of this era of aviation. We con­
duct meetings, displays and educational programs rela­
tive to aviation and in particular, concerning antique,
classic and historical aircraft and engines. We have
come a long way since the initial formation of this
Division in EAA, and through our dedication and en­
thusiasm we shall continue to grow and assure our
future in aviation .
PUBLICATION OF THE ANTIQUE/CLASSIC DIVISION , INC.
OF THE EXPERIMENTAL AIRCRAFT ASSOCIATION , INC.
P.O. BOX 229, HALES CORNERS , WI 53130
COPYRIGHT «:> 1981 EAA ANTIQU E/CLASSIC DIVI SI ON , IN C. , A LL RI GHTS RESERV ED
FEBRUARY 1981 VOLUME 9
NUMBER 2
OFFICERS
PRESIDENT
W. BRAD THOMAS , JR .
301 DODSON MILL ROAD
PILOT MOUNTAIN , NC 27041 919/368-2875 Home
919/368-2291 Office
SECRETARY
M. C. " KELLY " VIETS
7745 W. 183RD ST.
STILWELL, KS 66085
913/681-2303 Home
913/782-6720 Office
VI CE-PRESI DENT
JACK C. WI NTH ROP
ROUTE 1, BOX 111
ALLEN, TX 75002
214/727-5649
TREASURER
E. E. " BUCK " HIL BERT
P.O. BOX 145
UNION, IL 60180
815/923-4591
DIRECTORS
Ronald Fritz
15401 Sparta Avenue
Kent City , MI 49330
616/678-5012 Morton W . Lester
P.O. Box 3747
Martinsville, VA 24112
703/632-4839
Claude L. .Gray . Jr.
9635 Sylvia Avenue
Northridge, CA 91324
213/349-1338 Arthur R. Morgan
3744 North 51st Blvd .
Milwaukee, WI 53216
414/442-3631
Dale A . Gustafson
77? Shady Hill Drive
Indianapolis. IN 46274
317/293-4430 John R. Turgyan
1530 Kuser Road
Trenton , NJ 08619
609/585-2747
AI Kelch
66 W. 622 N. Madison Avenue
Cedarburg , WI 53012
414/377-5886 S. J. Willman
Box 2672
Oshkosh , WI 54901
414/235-1 265
Robert E. Kesel
455 Oakridge Drive
Rochester , NY 14617
716/342-3170
George S. York 181 Sloboda Ave . Mansfield , OH 44906 419/529-4378
FRONT COVER ...
Seen at Oshkosh '80 was this beautiful
1945 Beechcraft D17S Staggerwing
owned by Lewis W . Lindemer (EAA
56710 , AI C 2806), 45 E. Golden Lake
Road . Circle Pi nes , MN 55014.
(Photo by Ted Koston)
BACK COV ER . . .
Rare 1930 Stearman 4E flown by owner
Danny R. Wine (EM 98146 . AlC 4261 )
at the 1980 National Stearman Fly-In .
See story on page 5.
(Photo by Kenneth D. Wilson)
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Straight and Level .. . by Brad Thomas . . . .. . .. . . . .
A/C News ... by Gene Chase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..
The Ninth Annual Stearman Fly-In .. .
by John M. Crider, Jr. ........ . .. . . ..... .. .. . . ..
To Rebuild A PA-12 ... by J. M. Thede ....... . .... .
The First Lockheed ... by Cedric Galloway . .......
New Restoration Of A Curtiss Robin . . .
by Gene Chase .... ... .... . . ... . . . .. . .. ... .....
Sky Pal 32Bravo .. . by Kary/ Herman . . . . . . ........
How To Build The Famous " Demoiselle " Santos­
Dumont's Monoplane - Part II ...
by Arthur E. Joerin and A. Cross , A.M . .... .. . . . .
Vintage Planes In Brazil ... by J. C. Boscardin .. . . .
Calendar Of Events ......... .. .......... . ...... . ..
2
4
5
10
14
17
18
20
24
25
ADVISORS
John S. Copeland
9 Joan ne Drive
Vestborough . MA 01581
617/366-7245
Stan Gomoll
1042 901h Lane , NE
Minneapolis, M N 55434
6121784-1172
Gene Morris
27 Chandelle Drive
Hampsh i re . IL 60140
312/683-3199
PUBLICATION STAFF
Publisher
Paul H. Poberezny
Editor G ene R. Chase Page 5 Page 14
Pag e 24
Editorial Policy : Readers are encouraged to subm it stories and photographs . Pol icy op inio ns expressed in arti c les are solely those of the authors. Responsibility for accuracy in reporting rests entirely with th e co ntributor. Material shou ld be sent to : Gene R. Chase . Editor . The VINTAGE AIRPLANE, P.O. Box 229, Hales Corners. WI 53130. Readers are encouraged to submit stories and photographs. Associate Editorships are aSSigned to those writers who submit five or more articles wh ich are published in THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE during the current year. Associates re ceive a bound volume of THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE and a free one-year membersh ip in the Division for their efforts . POLICY - Opinions expressed in articles are solely those of the authors. Responsibility f or accuracy in reporting rests entirely with the contributo r. THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE (ISSN 0091-6943) is owned exclus ively by EAA Antique/Classi c Divisi on. In c .. and is publ ished monthly at Hales Corners , Wisconsin 53130 . Second Class Postage paid at Hales Corn ers Post Office , Hales Corners , Wisconsin 53130. and additional mailing offices. Membership rates for EAA Antique/Classic Division . Inc .. are $14.00 per 12 month period of which $10.00 is for the publication of THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE . Membership is open to all who are interested in aviation . ADVERTISING - Antique/Classic Division does not guarantee or endorse any product offered through our advertising . We invite constructive criticism and welcome any report of inferior merchandise obtained through our advertising so that cor· rective measures can be taken . 3
T"
CESSNA 150/152 CLUB
A club for owners and enthusiasts . of the Cessna
1501152 line has been formed. Monthly newsletters,
money saving discount offers, safety and maintenance
tips, repair articles and product evaluation are services
that members will receive. The club was formed by
N. F. "Skip" Carden, III, who will serve as Executive
Director. Skip has over 11 years experience directing
airplane clubs. Interested persons should contact: The
Cessna 150/ 152 Club, P. O. Box 15388, Durham, NC
27704.
NEW DATES FOR AAA/APM FLY-IN
The annual Antique Airplane Association/Air Power
Museum Fly-In held traditionally during the week pre­
ceeding Labor Day at Blakesburg, Iowa, have changed
the dates to August 16-23 for 1981. This should avoid
a conflict with the opening of schools for those families
with school age children who wish to attend.
MUSEUM NEEDS
The following items are needed to carryon the pro­
grams of the EAA Air Museum Fou ndation. If you can
help, please contact EAA Headquarters , telephone 4141
425-4860. Donations to the Museum are tax deductible.
*Air operated automotive bumper jack *Planer (wood) *Wing fittings for Curtiss JN4D *Miscellaneous aviation mechanic hand tools
*Tools for V-1650 Merlin engines
*Complete engine or parts, Merlin V-1650
*Semi-tractor, double or single axle
*Modern NA V /COM radios for B-25 and Lockheed
12 aircraft
(Photo Copyrighted by Chris Sorensen)
This 1930 Stearman , N788H , si n 6003 ,
is registered as a Model 6L. Powered
by a 165 hp Continental engine , it is
painted in the colors of an Army YPT­
9B. Owner is Ray H. Stephen and the
plane is pictured here in 1978 as a part
of the Hill Country collection at Morgan
Hill, California.
4
*Hydraulic Mule
*Hydraulic Maintenance Stands
*Metal to metal seat belts
*28 volt rectifier - 100 amp
*Mechanics wash tank
*Spark plug cleaner
*Belt grinder
*Lawn mower blade balancer
*Caterpillar or crawler tractor with front end loader
* 1 set Aeronca C-3 flying wires
*Engine rebuilding stand for automotive engines
*Overhaul Manual and Parts List for Me 109 (Spanish
built)
*Wright Cyclone R-1300-1A engine for the Museum's
North American T-28A
*Sewing machine with zig-zag attachment for flag
repair, etc., at Oshkosh
TWO BORDEN/THOMPSON POSTERS NEEDED Lionel J . Salisbury who authored the series of Bor­
den and Thompson Malted Milk Products airplane posters
from the 1930's which ran for about two years in The
VINTAGE AIRPLANE, is planning to publish a book on
these posters. To complete his collection he still needs
the two posters titled "The Stout Sky Car" and "Captain
Jimmy and His Dog Scottie".
Of the several EAAers who so generously sent their'
posters to us for copying and subsequent reproduction
in the magazine , not a one had the above mentioned is­
sues . Lionel requests that anyone having either or both
posters, please send them to him so he can make copies.
He will return the originals to the sender. Lionel's ad­
dress is: Seven Harper Road , Brampton, Ontario L6W
2W3, Canada.
THE NINTH ANNUAL
September 3-7, 1980
(Photo b y Dick Stouffer)
A line up of many of the Stearmans attending the Nati onal Stearman Fly-In at Galesburg , Illinois. Photo taken
from " Griff" Griffin's Stearman.
By John M. Crider, Jr . (A IC 5824) 1606 B lake Drive Richardson, TX 75081 (All Photos by Kenneth D. Wilson , Except As Noted)
The month of September has a special significance
to Stearman pilots and enthusiasts , for the Wednesday
fo ll owing Labor Day marks the start of the Annual
National Stearman Fly-In at Galesburg , Illinois. Ther~,
those who fly or admire , or at one time trained in the
Stearman, gather for five days of fe ll owship centered
around this marvelous old biplane.
The Fly-In opened this year with a clear, cool day
and blu e skies painted with high , white clouds. By six
o'clock Wednesday eveni ng, 15 Stearmans were graz­
i ng in the grass at th e n orth end of Galesburg Mu nici­
pa l Airport whil e th eir pil ots a nd passe ngers renewed
old fri end s hips or start ed n ew on es . That night , th e
early a rrivals got a previ ew of th e film showing de­
t a ils of work at the Stearman Aircra ft Company during
th e la t e 1930's.
Thursday morning , ea rly ri se rs at the Gales burg
Holiday Inn peeked out th eir windows to see overcast
s ki es and a s teady rain . Th e warm front that had patched
Wednesday's s kies with high cirrus , was crossing ov er
Ga lesburg . By 9:00 a.m ., however , th e rain had s topped ,
a nd by 10:00 Fly-In parti cipa nts were enjoying a three
th ou sa nd foot ceiling and 15 mil es of visibility . Th e
on ly casualty of the night's s torm was the new grass
runwa y that Sam Mend enhall h a d sp ent all summer
pre paring . Wednesday , it had shown signs of drying
out from the eight-inch downpour that soaked Gales­
burg th e previou s week e nd. But Thursday morning's
5
Stearman E75, N99266 was one of two identical matched Stear­
mans sporting a bright yellow and black paint scheme. It was
flown by Thomas and Don Randolph.
rain kept the yellow crosses on the grass and the Stear­
mans on the concrete. The weather also slowed new ar­
rivals to a trickle . By noon Thursday , only four more
Stearmans had landed , and arriving pilots told of hav­
ing to divert around rain showers or thunderstorms .
In the hopes of having a larger number of partici­
pants later , the aerobatic contest was rescheduled for
Friday . Thursday was dedicated to formation flying,
buddy hopping and story telling . Stearmans taxied in
and out , and the chipmunks hiding in the grass scat­
tered in all directions. Singly and in formation , the
Stearmans spread out from the field. Over town , for­
mations wheeled in V's , diamonds, or echelons , while
out over the cornfields , single Stearmans looped and
rolled.
By late afternoon, most planes were back on the
ground. The field was becoming quiet as pilots topped
off their tanks and checked dipsticks . Then at six o'clock
sharp , Dan Wine and his Stearman 4E crossed the field
boundary and all that changed. People began running
and shouting to one another and taking pictures. Dan's
beautiful black and yellow Model4E was the first civilian­
model Stearman ever to land at the Fly-In . Built in 1930
and powered by a 450 hp R-1340 WASP radial engine,
NC663K can cruise at speeds up to 160 mph. Dan said ,
however , that he prefers an "economy" cruise of 130
mph which lowers fuel consumption to a mere 24 gal­
lons per hour. (See photo on back cover of this issue . ..
Ed.)
Last year , the airplane developed an engine vibra­
tion while at the Antique Airplane Association Fly-In
in Blakesburg, Iowa and had not been able to reach
Galesburg . But this year, NC663K not only succeeded
in reaching the National Stearman Fly-In, it was a cen­
t€T of attention from the moment it touched down . Dan
purchased the airplane four years ago from Bob Penny
of Southern California. It is one of only three Model
4E's still in existence and is the only stock one flying.
Bill and Beth Mason also arrived Thursday evening.
Their flight to Galesburg took around 30 hours of fly­
ing time , but then it's a long way from the San Francisco
area to Galesburg . Their flight earned them the Tired
Butt award for flying the longest distance to the event.
By sundown there were 34 Stearrrians on the ground .
They ranged from immaculately restored airplanes, like
Dan Wine's 4E , to the duster flown up from Mississippi
by Pete Jones . Pete's airplane showed that it worked
hard for its living , and it was good to have the working
Stearman represented at the Fly-In. How many of the
neatly restored PT's and N2S's looked just like Pete's
only a few years ago?
6
Thursday evening saw another fine party at Tootie's
Steeplechase.
Friday morning it began raining again. At the field,
the irregular pattern of raindrops ricocheting off taut
fabric became a steady rhythm as the rain and wind
increased. Even in the rain, Rick and the other line per­
sonnel were out on the field cheerfully handing up the
gas hose as the rain ran down their sleeves . The people
at Galesburg Aviation were proud that they had man­
aged to obtain a special load of 80 octane for the Fly­
In . John Lewkowicz was one of the hardy few who
camped out at the airport in spite of the weather . When
asked if he was having to bailout his tent each morning,
he only laughed and said, "No problem."
By afternoon the rain stopped and the weather cleared.
Pilots began organizing and practicing for Saturday's
formation contest as well as hopping passengers. Those
climbing above 2,200 feet found a layer of warm, smooth
air above the cool chop next to the ground.
The additional rain kept the grass runway closed for
the third consecutive day and eventually, for the entire
Fly-In , while the low ceilings forced another postpone­
ment of the aerol'iatic contest. Still, everyone enjoyed
a good afternoon of flying. The Stearmans were draw­
ing attention from all quarters. Truck drivers along the
highway by the airport were blowing their airhorns in
salu te as they sped by . More and more townspeople be­
gan coming out to see the biplanes take off and land.
The only incident took place Friday afternoon and
wound up uneventfully . Willard Duke was flying forma­
tion with three other Stearmans when the rear cockpit
throttle linkage failed . Willard was left with 1600 ' rpm
and what must have seemed like a long way back to the
airport . After he had the field made, Willard shut the
engine dowtJ. , the prop stopped turning, and he made a
safe but soggy landing in the grass. It turned out that
his passenger for that flight had been a photographer
from the Galesburg Register Mail. The next morning
Willard and his forced landing were on page one.
For the second year, one of the most popular figures
at the Fly-In was Deed Levy, Chief Experimental Test
Pllot of Stearman Aircraft Company during much of its
corporate existence. Deed's wealth of history, anecdotes
and information kept him at the center of a circle of
Stearman enthusiasts all week.
Stearmans continued to arrive despite the weather
and at 7:20 P.M. the sun set on · 52 Stearmans at Gales­
burg airport. Friday night the Stearman enthusiasts
dined and danced at the Elks Club.
Saturday's events began early as pilots and their
passengers piled out of the sack early for the popular
Stearman N2S-5, N52129, was a new restoration by Jack Fox
of Monett, Missouri.
Stearman, N60657, received the SRA Blood, Sweat
& Tears Award for workmanship and effort for Teddy
and Joe Shelor.
This beautiful silver Stearman in U.S. Navy Instru­
ment Trainer markings was flown by Ray Snyder
from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
Dawn Patrol to Monmouth, Illinois . But as Greg Toland
drove the olive drab bus to the airport, the ground fog
began thickening . The sun rose at 6:33 A.M., but the
Stearmans had to stay on the ground. Still, everyone
was treated to the sight of the sun rising on a fog­
shrouded field of Stearmans. At that moment it was not
hard to imagine that the year was 1942 and that this
was Randolph Field instead of Galesburg .
Gradually the visibility improved and by 7:25 A.M.
the first 1000 feet of Runway 20 was filled with idling
Stearmans impatiently waiting for VFR minimums . At
7:27 A.M. the visibility reached three miles, and in the
space of three or four minutes, some 30 Stearmans be­
came airborne. Many of the airplanes joined in a huge
"V" formation and after circling town , crossed over the
airport west bound for Monmouth. The rising sun glinted
off pockets of ground fog that still lay in the valleys.
Several hundred. feet above the ground the air was
warm. When the last plane landed, there were 41 Stear­
mans on Monmouth airport, and for the second year in
a row the flight to Monmouth was accomplished without
incident. Pilots and their passengers adjourned to break­
fast prepared by the Monmouth Flying Club. After
breakfast the long-delayed aerobatic contest was held.
This year, ten pilots participated in the fun-type contest.
By one o'clock the Stearmans were back at Galesburg,
and Bob Cassens began briefing pilots for the flour­
bombing contest. Shortly afterwards , sacks of flour be­
gan raining down around the target barrel out in the
grass . In addition to flour bombing, the contest also
included the traditional short-field take-off and ac­
curacy landing competitions. The use of the intersect­
ing runway by tower controlled aircraft forced the Stear­
mans to make tight left turns after take-offs and bomb­
ing runs . The north side of Galesburg airport quickly
became a hornet's nest of activity . At three o'clock, Bob
Cassens once again masterfully briefed his irreverent
group of aviators, this time for the formation contest.
Five flights competed , including one flight made up
entirely of 450 hp Stearmans. The last formation land­
ed just in time to beat the thundershower which sent
everyone running for the tents and washed out the Mini
Air Show that had been planned for five o'clock.
Wet but happy, everyone headed back for the Holi­
day Inn where the dinner and awards banquet were
held Saturday evening. After a delicious meal, catered
and served by the Inn's staff, Fly-In guests were intro­
duced . They included the honorable Robert W. Kimble ,
Mayor of Galesburg; Larry Asaro , the City Manager;
Deed Levy , Chief Test Pilot for Stearman Aircraft
Company; and Mrs. Marilyn Carr, Lloyd Stearman's
daughter. Thanks were expressed to the many people
and organizations that had made the Fly-In possible.
Dusters and Sprayers Supply, Inc. awarded three
beautiful trophies to the airplanes which they felt
represented outstanding restorations. In future years
there will be one award each for the Company's choice
of Best PT, Best N2S and Best Civilian Restoration .
This year , however, one trophy went to Bill Wilkins
and his N2S-1, N50142 . Bill's Stearman , which was 60
percent destroyed by a tornado this summer, had been
flying only a little over 12 months following a rebuild­
ing process that took 25 years.
John Hooper, who sponsored the aerobatic contest,
presented plaques to each pilot who participated in that
competition and also presented some comical awards.
Various other individuals' accomplishments and foul­
ups were recalled and recognized with appropriate'awards .
Bob Cassens announced the results of the day's con­
tests . The work done by Bob and his staff of judges and
7
300 hp custom Stearman, N52967, was flown by John Schoonhoven from his private strip at Evergreen, Colorado.
starters, produced a very enjoyable afternoon for all
those who participated.
Pete Jones and his duster received a special award
recognizing the contribution that the blue-collar Stear­
man makes to the Fly-In.
Tom Lowe , President of ,the Stearman Restorers As­
sociation and Ken Wilson, the Association's Historian ,
presented the SRA Awards. Tom and Ken also announced
that they have been collecting material and research­
ing Stearman history for several years and that they
plan to co-author a book on the history of the Stearman
Aircraft Company.
As Sunday morning wore on, more and more Stear­
man pilots checked the weather , said good-bys and head­
ed home . The final count was 61 Stearmans in atten­
dance. Had the weather been better during the early
days of the Fly-In , an even greater number might have
attended .
Sunday afternoon , the townspeople of Galesburg and
the remaining Stearman pilots were treated to an air
show featurir:.g parachute jumpers J. T. Hill and Jim
White; Bob Heuer and Dave Dacy each performing aero­
batics in his 450 hp Stearman and Jim Leahy's aero­
batics in his stock 220 hp N2S-3 . Pete Meyers performed
in his Decathlon , Rick Cunningham in his Bucker Jung­
mann, and Ed Merchant flew his Pitts Special. The
crowd again enjoyed the antics of Dick Willets and his
Crazy Cub act, and the fly-by of three F-4 Phantoms from
the Springfield, Illinois Air National Guard was another
high point of the show.
Those who participated in this year's Fly-In again
enjoyed the fellowship that has brought back Stear­
man lovers year after year . To see old friends , to make
new ones is the essence of the Nationall Stearman Fly­
In . The tenth National Stearman Fly-In will be held
September 9th through the 13th , 1981. Those who enjoy
flying , talking about, or just looking at Stearmans will
find those five days to be very special ones.
AWARDS
A
sprayer, N52470, flown by Pete Jones for
a delivery to a new owner for restoration at Galesburg. The
first working, Ag Stearman to attend the Fly-In for several
years.
~tearman
8
Stroh's Award - Stearman N2S-3, N9914H, Jim Leahy
Best Hangar Pilot - Bob Simmons, Stearman PT-17 ,
N50058
Tired Butt Award - Stearman PT-13D, N65874 , Bill
and Beth Mason
Hard Luck Award - Stearman N2S-3, N64993 , Peter
Spear
SNAFU Award - Stearman PT-17 , N72AA , Willard
Duke
Hero's Award - Stearman PT-17C, N300E , Ralph Ras­
nick
Early Bird Award - Stearman PT-17, N66740, Dick
Baird and Stearman N2S-3 , N66263, Rick Baird
(owned by Jim Furlong)
Short Field Take-Off Contest - Stearman N2S-5, N631E,
Peter Reed
Spot Landing Contest - Tom Beaver
Flour Bombing Contest - Stearman PT-17 , N55170 ,
Bill McBride
Formation Flying Contest - Stearman N2S-5 , N520HT,
Harry Thomas; Stearman N2S-2 , N60562 , John Hoop­
er; Stearman PT-17, N72AA , Willard Duke; Stear­
man N2S-3, N61P, John Crider
Stearman Aerobatic Contest - 1st Place - Stearman
PT-17 , N79535, John Ruhlin; 2nd Place - Stearman
PT-17, N66740, Dick Baird; 3rd Place - Stearman
N2S-2, N60562 , John McCormick
Special Award - Stearman A 75N1 duster, N52470,
Pete Jones
DUSTERS & SPRAYERS SUPPLY AWARDS
Special Award - Stearman N2S-1, N50142, Bill Wi lkins
Military Restoration - Stearman, N69654, Dick Fritz
and Jerry Wetterling
Civilian Restoration - Stearman 4E, NC663 K, Dan Wine
STEARMAN RESTORERS ASSOCIATION AWARDS
Lloyd Stearman Memorial Award - Lawren ce Palmer­
Ball , Jr .
Bill Adams Memorial Award - Monmouth Pilots As­
sociation
"Outfit" Contributor's Awan,i For 1979- LaVerne Heck ,
for her article, "TO SOLO A STEARMAN"
Best Stearman PT - Stearman PT-13D, N4599N , Tom
Hoselton
Best Stearman N2S - Stearman N2S-3 , N66302 , Chuck
Andreas and Byron Fredericksen
Best Custom Stearman - Stearman N2S-5, N9078H,
"Griff' Griffin
Best Civilian Stock Stearman - Stearma n PT-17,
N60323, Larry Kampel
Blood, Sweat & Tears - Stearman, N60657, J oe and
Teddy Shelor
The National Stearman Fly-In was just one of the many stops made by Bill and Beth Mason in their " Big Red "
on a several month trip from California to the east coast and return.
9
TO
R. ,BUILD A PA-12 By J. M . Thede EAA 122712, AIC 3708 RR3 Elmuale, Ontario, -Canada
Towing the fuselage home to start the restoration project.
January 15, 1975 brought bad news , the engineer
doing the annual inspection of my PA-12 discovered that
the wing fabric, although looking good , would not pass
the fabric punch test and both wings would have to be
recovered before the aircraft could be certified airworthy .
I had purchased C-FZJI four years previously and had
flown it in most Canadian provinces and several of the
northern United States. During this time I had noticed
many "rough edges" on the plane which some day I had
hoped to improve. Now, I decided, was the time ... I
would rebuild the entire aircraft. I only had two problems,
(a) no workshop, as the house I was living in at the time
was very small and had no basement, and, (b) no experi­
ence in fabric or metal work.
Hans Mayer, EAA 58867, came to the rescue. He
was building a VP-2 at the time and upon hearing what
I had in mind he immediately offered me the use of his
old workshop (he had just finished building a new one)
which was just the right size for the fuselage. Hans
also volunteered his time and experience with the re­
covering work. He had worked in a glider factory in
Europe and had lots of fabric experience. As owner of
a machine shop he also had the skill and equipment for
any metal repairs needed.
On January 30, I dismantled the aircraft thinking
at this time that I would be reassembling it in 6 months
or so (ha, hal . I towed the fuselage behind my land rover
to Hans' workshop not realizing that it would be 2V2
years before I towed it back again. The local FBO at
the Midland, Ontario airport had said that I could store
and work on the wings at the back of his hangar and so
the following day I stripped the fabric from the wings.
This of course was the easy part. I figured that since the
wings were the largest part of the aircraft, it would be
best to attack them first and have them finished before
I started on the rest of the pieces; knowing that the
10
largest part.'l were finished might give me strength to
carryon.
I first cleaned the dirt and old fuel stains from leak­
ing gas tanks from the aluminum ribs. A close inspec­
tion of the structure revealed no serious damage or cor­
rosion. New wing tip bows had been installed shortly
before I bought the aircraft and as they were warp free,
so these were sanded and varnished . Fittings were re­
moved, cleaned, inspected, painted and reinstalled . All
ribs were examined and a few small bends and dents
were straightened . Aileron cables and bellcranks were
removed, inspected, reinstalled and lubricated. All elec­
trical wiring, nuts, bolts and PK screws were checked
and replaced as necessary . About two feet of leading
edge was replaced on each wing as it was badly dented.
In the entire project this was one of the few areas we
should have done further work ' on. I wish now that I
had installed hew leading edges over the entire length
of the wings as the small dents which were inconspicuous
at the time, showed up more after the aircraft was cov­
ered and painted. The ailerons were similarly rebuilt
and fitted on the wings and checked for smooth opera­
tion. The wings and ailerons were entirely zinc chro­
mated and we were ready for inspection . The engineer
signed both wings off for recovering and after covering
all chafe points with tape and installing inter-rib brac­
ing tape we were ready to cover.
I had decided to cover with Lincoln cloth (similar to
Ceconite) and use butyrate dope but did not know where
to begin. Hans made a few quick measurements, tried
the fabric envelopes on for size (we had to cut open the
end of the envelope as it did not fit the wing tip bow at
all) and began applying the glue to the left wing. It was
much easier and faster than I had thought . The follow­
ing day we applied heat to the wing with an iron to
shrink the Lincoln cloth and then brushed on the first
The instrument panel, before . ..
. .. and after.
coat of dope. Two days later the right wing was also
covered. Then came the rib stitching, one of the worst
jobs of the whole project. The first rib took me two hours
and I wore out one pair of running shoes travelling from
one side of the wing to the other. Having a short memory,
I had to check a textbook everytime I tied the approved
rib stitching knot. Eventually I caught on to the opera­
tion and things went a little faster although I had some
sore fingers for a while . Next I doped on drain grommets ,
reinforcing tape and grommets for inspection covers.
I also added reinforcing patches around a.Jl openings
and over the grommets. I brushed on two more coats
of Rand-o-proof and set the wings aside.
I then took a one week holiday and attacked the fuse­
lage with great vigor. Stripping the fabric, removing
the engine, landing gear, instruments, floor boards,
and controls I was soon left with a bare frame. At this
point it became obvious that I had been carrying around
a lot of excess black tape which had been used in the
past to fasten electrical wiring, fuel lines and other
assorted objects to the frame . Also there was consider­
able excess wiring on the plane which had simply been
cut off whenever the item it was connected to was re­
moved. I found two broken wooden stringers which had
been fastened together with masking tape at the time
of the last recovering instead of being replaced. Although
the aircraft was basically in excellent condition I found
many examples of sloppy workmanship in the past.
The fuselage tubing looked good but just to be sure
I sandblasted the entire frame to remove all paint and
dirt. All tubing was closely inspected and the bottom
longerons were checked with a centerpunch for deteri­
oration. Fortunately no rust was found. Some of the
longerons had been bent slightly by the tightening of
the old fabric. These we straightened with a large rub­
Cathy Thede lends a helping.hand.
11
bel' mallet. All welds were inspected and the only prob­
lems were a few broken welds on the channels which
support the wooden stringers on top of the fuselage .
These were quickly repaired and the fuselage was painted
with zinc chromate and enamel.
I work for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
and was able to use one of their wood working shops
for cleaning and painting small parts and cutting new
floor boards. I also stored the engine here and my fiancee
volunteered to clean it up and give it a new paint job.
I had taken the rudder, elevators and stabilizers home
where I stripped and checked them and applied new fab­
ric to them on my front lawn. Thus I had four different
working places.
I then started to reassemble the fuselage . First, all
control systems were reinstalled . Everything was lubri­
cated and checked for tightness and smoothness of opera­
tion . New floors , stringers, battery box frame , electri­
cal wiring were added . As the old instrument and elec­
trical panels were cracked and full of miscellaneous
holes new ones were planned, built and installed. An
entire Airtex interior (headliner, side panels, seats, fire­
wall cover) was installed with much fiddlework. A fish­
ing rod tube was installed and a strobe light was added
on the bottom of the fuselage just forward of the tail.
The door was reworked , a new handle was fabricated
Hans Mayer shows the author how to shrink the Lincoln cloth.
12
out of aluminum and installed, and a locking mechanism
was designed and added . The fuselage was inspected
and signed off for covering by a mechanic .
I used three large pieces of Lincoln cloth to cover
the fuselage and one small piece for the cabin roof. I
brushed on a coat of Rand-o-proof then added reinforc­
ing patches, tapes , grommets , and inspection rings and
rib stitched the fin. Not having any spray equipment
available I brushed on two more coats of Rand-o-proof
and 7 coats of aluminum butyrate. I tried applying two
coats with a paint roller but this appeared to give a
pebbling effect to the finish so I gave up. The fuselage
was sanded between every second coat.
The landing gear was covered and installed using
new bolts , rubber bumpers, and bungees. To install
the bungees , Hans made a special tool which allowed
us to stretch them into place without using too many
strange words. The main wheels and brake system were
disassembled, cleaned and inspected. P A-12 brakes are
notoriously poor but it is amazing mine had worked at
all with all the gunk and rust found inside them. I had
the brake frames chrome plated to prevent -any further
deterioration and reassembled the system using new
springs, retainers and seals. They have since worked
considerably better although are still not perfect. The
main wheel bearings, showing no signs of wear, were
repacked and replaced and the wheels installed on the
landing gear. While cleaning and inspecting the tail
wheel assembly the bearings fell apart in my hands ,
so I figured it was time for new ones. To protect the new
bearings Hans made a new very tight fitting hub cap
for the tail wheel.
Instruments, panel lighting , radio, push-pull controls
and plumbing were then installed in and behind the
new instrument panel and the electrical wiring, fuse
system and switches were added to the electrical panel.
Three new instrument panel covers were made by form­
ing the aluminum over wooden patterns . A new trim
panel which covers the dual throttle controls was fabri­
cated for the left side of the cockpit and another one
was made for the door. Microphone and earphone jacks
were installed in the left trim panel, and a push to talk
switch was added to the top of the stick. The headset
system is a lot better than tryinb to fumble for a micro­
phone when you're on final approach.
My uncle volunteered to make genuine walnut knobs
for the throttles, trim control, door handle and stick
tops. When everything had been fitted to the instru- ­
ment panel , electrical panel and two side trim panels
they were all removed, painted with zinc chromate.
covered with naugahide and reinstalled.
The boot cowl was stripped of many layers of old
paint; several bends and wear points were repaired and
it was covered with zinc chromate and installed. All new
side windows were cut from plexiglass and a new wind­
shield was purchased. The heating system was improved
by changing the position of the intake for the air supply
so it provides more air to the heater and by modifying
the heat muff so the fresh air picks up more heat from
the muffler before it passes into the cabin. Together
with the tighter fitting windows and door and upholstery
insulation the heater now makes it possible to fly in
winter with only a light jacket when previously I had
to wear a snowmobile suit.
I then transported the engine. fuselage and other
parts to the airport and began final assembly using all
new hardware. I installed the motor mount and motor
and had the engineer do a compression test. He decided
it needed a top overhaul so I pulled the engine and took
it to a reputable engine shop. In addition to the top over­
haul they rebuilt the carburetor, and added 2 new primer
lines so that I now can prime all four cylinders before
starting, which is a definite advantage for winter fly­
ing. The engine was gone for a month and I spent that
time preparing the fuselage for painting, installing the
muffier, painting small parts and labeling the cockpit
controls. Finally the engine came back and it was per­
manently installed and all the controls and plumbing
connected.
I then turned my attention to the cowling. I had al­
ready purchased a new nose bowl (at great expense) as
the original was dented and cracked. When we examined
the rest of the cowling Hans decided to make all new
panels. This took a lot of cutting and fitting but they
were eventually completed and installed. Next I made
a complete set of new baffies as the old ones were badly
damaged.
Meanwhile the engineer had sprayed several coats
of aluminum butyrate dope on the wings and now every­
thing was ready for painting. Over the past two years I
had done a lot of thinking about the color scheme and
had finally settled on Lock Haven Yellow with Hershey
brown trim. I gave some consideration to the original
paint scheme but decided against it. When rebuilding
the plane I had no intention of restoring it to the exact
original state. I enjoy using it on cross country trips
and with this in mind, made several changes and im­
provements during the project, thus detracting from the
originality of the aircraft. I masked off the fuselage and
told the engineer to call me when he was finished spray­
ing the butyrate colors. Since I had no experience in
spraying nor equipment for the job I figured it was worth
the extra money for him to do it.
I checked both fuel tanks and found several minor
leaks. I attempted to solder these twice before deciding
to remove all the old solder in the area of the leaks and
start from scratch. After soldering and vacuuming out
the tanks I filled them with fuel and left them for three
days . Thankfully there were no leaks.
With the assistance of several friends the wings
and struts were installed in short order. The fuel tanks
were added and new fuel gauges (cork float and wire)
were made and installed. All fairings and covers were
inspected and either reworked or replaced by new ones
made up to fit better than the old ones. I then installed
the tail feathers and hooked up all controls and check­
ing same for smooth operation. I vacuumed out the fuse­
lage , installed the seats and seat belts and called the
engineer for final inspection. After rigging the aircraft
and completing the final inspection he weighed the plane
and computed the weight and balance. The plane weighed
ten pounds more than it had prior to the rebuild and the
extra weight was probably due to the added interior
trim, upholstery , insulation and strobe light. He then
signed the log books and completed the necessary paper
work. As I hadn't flown since dismantling the aircraft
I asked the engineer to make the test flight. Every
builder knows the feeling of seeing his machine fly for
the first time and C-FZJI flew perfectly on the first
flight. After 2'>-2 years and 2,500 man hours of work I
felt as if a great weight had been lifted from my shoulders .
The aircraft is still powered by the original Lycoming
0-235-C 100 hp engine as when it was built in 1947. It
cruises at 105 mph using 5 imperial gallons per hour.
Since the rebuild I have flown the plane about 300
hours including three trips to Oshkosh , one to Sun 'N . Fun and several times north to James Bay. I have re­
cently added a vacuum system, directional gyro , artifi­ cial horizon, intercom and a heating system for the rear seat. Thanks to a lot of patience and the h elp of
several friends I am enjoying owning and flying a great
classic aircraft.
13
THE FIRST ·L OCKHEED The first Loughead airplane still under construction. A seaplane powered by a Kirkham 6 cylinder engine
with the Kirkham horseshoe-shaped radiator.
By Cedric Galloway
EAA 35278, A IC 152
14624 Willow Street
Hesperia , CA 92345
Photos Courtesy of Lockheed Aircraft Corp .
When we hear the word "Lockheed", we visualize
fast , streamlined and graceful airplanes . But they were
not always that way . Everything has to have a begin­
ning . Even the name became "streamlined" after a time.
Allen Loughead , the son of John and Flora Haines Loug­
head, whose Scotch-Irish name, in its phonetic spelling,
became Lockheed.
Allen was the youngest of four children. The family
lived in Niles , California inland from the southeast
shore of San Francisco Bay . Allen's parents separated
when Allen was quite young, and his mother took the
children to Alma in the Santa Cruz foothills , where she
operated a thirty-five acre fruit ranch . College trained
and talented, Mrs . Loughead derived extra income from
writing novels and poetry. Allen, slowed by poor health ,
never finished grammar school , but his mother supplied
an 'education with her fine tutoring.
Young Loughead and his older brother Malcolm en­
joyed ra nch life , but much preferred tinkering with
machinery. At seventeen Malcolm got a job as a mechanic
in San Francisco , working on White steam motorcars .
Allen also left the ranch when he reached seventeen ,
14
and went up to the big city. His first job was in a hard­
ware store at $10 a week, but he soon took a lower pay­
ing job as an automobile mechanic, like his brother Mal­
colm.
Meanwhile Victor , the eldest of the three brothers ,
worked as a consulting engineer in Chicago, where he
spent bis spare time as an aerodynamist and a writer .
His "Vehicles of the Air" and "Airplane Design for
Amateurs" were widely read, discussed and used by
would-be aeronauts , including his brothers.
Through Victor , Allen found work in 1910 as an
airplane engine mechanic in Chicago and soon a chance
to take his first flight in an airplane . He met George
Gates , the proud builder of a pusher biplane with a home­
made 4-cylinder , 50 hp engine . Gates discovered he
couldn't fly it alone because the control system required
manipulation of . the ailerons, rudder , and elevators in
three separate operations. He asked Allen if he could
operate the ailerons . Allen had never handled an air­
plane but was not lacking in self-confidence.
"Sure," he said.
They warmed up the engine, Allen climbed aboard
the flimsy contraption , sat behind Gates, and wrapped
rags around the aileron control wires to keep his hands
from slipping. The plane took off, circled the field and
landed safely , making probably the first dual controlled
flight of its type in aviation history .
The thrill lingered with him as he tuned the power­
plant for the plane of his employer, James E. Plew, a
truck distributor who was trying to break into aviation .
Plew's Curtiss-type pusher, with a 35 hp engine, was
made ready for demonstration flights from a nearby
race track. The pilot was having difficulty in getting
the plane off the snow covered ground When he finally
gave up, Plew decided to call the demonstration off. Allen
pleaded with Plew to let him have a try at getting the
plane into the air. With Plew's O.K. , Allen retuned
the engine, and with higher rpm he was able to coax
the flimsy pusher into the air, gradually oriented him­
self to the controls and the shoulder harness that worked
the ailerons . Jerkily he circled around and around the
oval track and landed in one piece. Of his first solo he
says: "It was partly nerve, partly confidence, and partly
damn foolishness, but I was now an aviator!"
Allen had about an hour and a half in the air when
he began working as a "flying instructor" . He also had
a brief career as an exhibition flyer , which came to
an abrupt end at Hoopeston , Illinois. Piloting a water­
soaked and underpowered Curtiss , Loughead left the
ground in fine style, but could not gain altitude . His
flight into the late afternoon dusk was suddenly inter­
rupted by contact with some telegraph wire lines. The
fragile Curtiss came to rest in a tangle of wires , hang­
ing with one wing impaled on the crossarm of l'! pole.
Allen switched off the engine, which was still running ,
and scrambled unhurt from the wreckage.
Experiences on the country-fair circuit taught Loug­
head what was good - and bad - about the flying
machines of 1911. Not trusting his luck too far , and with
a wife to support, he returned to San Francisco to work
in a garage until such time as he might be able to build
an airplane of his own. The design for a three-place
seaplane was already occupying his mind. It should be
a tractor type , with engine in front, he was tired of wor­
rying about a heavy motor mounted behind, hanging
there in readiness to crush the pilot should the plane
come down nose first.
Allen often discussed aerodynamics with his brother
Ma·lcolm , and at length the two mechanics joined up to
build their own plane. A hydroplane was the logical
choice because of the unlimited facilities in and around
the Bay area , and San Francisco's long-time interest
in boating. To give the impression that they were not
building their first plane, they designated the design
as Model G.
The brothers kept their jobs and worked every other
waking moment on their airplane. Truly , one of the
earliest of homebuilts. They rented a former garage at
the corner of Pacific A venue and Polk Street, and for
the next year and a half, that corner was the scene of
ever-increasing activity as the new airplane took shape.
Max Mamlock of the Alco Cab company became interested
in their project and invested $4,000 to help them along.
The first Loughead-built airplane was a sizable ship.
A biplane , its upper wingspread was 46 feet and its
triangular fuselage was 30 feet long. It weighed 2,200
pounds gross, and it carried a useful load of nearly 600
pounds. It was equipped with midwing ailerons and, in
the manner of French design , the entire tail swung on
a universal joint. The main center float was built like
a sled, and outrigger pontoons kept the wing tips from
dipping into the water . When its Kirkham 6-cylinder
engine burst its crankcase after fifteen minutes of opera­
tion , the designers substituted an 80 hp watercooled
V-8 powerplant, retaining the Kirkham's horseshoe­
shaped radiator . The Model G had only one instru ment,
an old tachometer taken from a motor boat.
On the afternoon of June 15, 1913, Allen and Mal­
colm eased their creation into the waters from the beach
at the foot of Laguna Street, just west of the Army's
transport dock at Fort Mason. Allen climbed in, started
the engine, and swinging into the wind , got the G up on
The seaplane after installation of V-8, 80 hp engine and con­
venti onal-type radiator. San Francisco Worlds Fair, 1915.
The Model G taxiing out for take-off.
Aud rey Munso n in cockpit of the Model G at Santa Barbara.
She was a movie actress.
15
the step . Soon the slapping of the waves below ceased
and the plane was airborne. The ship was very sensitive
to handle, but a short hop was enough to &how that
months of work had produced success. Allen, highly
pleased, returned to the beach and took Malcolm aboard .
This time the "hydro-aeroplane" made a 10-mile flight,
cruising around the island of Alcatraz , soaring in grand
style some 300 feet above Market Street.
The Loughead's Model G was one of the first success­
ful tractor-type seaplanes ever built. It was highly
unusual for this tender age of flight in that it could
carry more than one person.
The G was well proven , but a minor landing mis­
hap and general economic conditions put the plane in
storage for two years. Allen went back to his old trade
of keeping San Francisco motorcars in running condi­
tion . Malcolm, ranging further afield, tried to sell the
Chinese a Curtiss pusher, only to have the plane con­
fiscated as contraband by the British at the outbreak
of World War 1.
The opening of the San Francisco-Panama Exposi­
tion in 1915, inspired the Loughead brothers to dust
off the Model G, and with fresh capital , they repaired
the plane, replacing the horseshoe radiator with a con­
ventional type. They obtained the flying concession at
the Pan Pacific, and during the fifty flying days at the
fair, they safely carried more than 600 passengers and
made themselves $4,000.
Allen and Malcolm decided to move to Santa Bar­
bara after the exposition closed. Since the gas tank of
the Model G held only 8 gallons , the boys couldn't at­
tempt to fly the ship the 300 odd miles south so they
packed the plane in crates and shipped them by trairi.
Early 1916 found them settled in Southern Cali­
fornia and launching a new project: The Loughead Air­
craft Manufacturing Company. For the third time , the
energy and obvious ability of Allen and Malcolm at­
(Publicity Photo)
Audrey Munson and Malcolm Loughead in the cockpi t of the
Model G. tracted financial backing. It came in this instance from Burton R. Rodman, a Santa Barbara machine shop owner. The new company proposed to build a 10 passenger
flying boat, an unprecedented design which called for
slow and painstaking workmanship . The second Loug­
head airplane will be the subject of the next article in
this series.
Back to the Model G, the brothers often flew it to
keep up their flying . It was finally retired in 1918.
With scant sentiment, the engine was sold and the frame­
work of the Lougheads' first airplane was junked for
scrap.
References: Of Men and Stars. A History of Lockheed Aircraft Cor­
poration, by Philip L. Juergens. Revolution in the Sky, by Richard S . Allen . *********************** 1941 Ryan PT-22, a/n 41-15425 photographed by Ted Koaton
at Fond du Lac, Wlsconaln In Auguat, 1976.
NEW RESTORATION OF A CURTISS ROBIN By Gene Chase
The photos on this page were con­
tributed by long-time EAAer John
"Jack" Rathjen , RFD 1, Ft. Calhoun,
Nebraska 68023. Jack's EAA number
is 2576 and his Antique/Classic Divi­
sion number is 272.
J ack is the proud owner of this re­
cently-restored 1929 Curtiss Robin ,
Serial Number 477. Jack's son , Bi ll
Rathjen, EAA 122305 rebuilt the plane
from the ground up and from the photos
it appears his craftsmanship and atten­
tion to detail are fi rst rate.
We hope the Rathjens will bring this
beauty to Oshkosh '81. We beli eve it
will be the first appearance of a Wrigh t
J6-5 powered Curtiss Robin at the Osh­
kosh Convention.
Jack Rathjen and his newly restored 1929
Curtiss Robin.
November 15, 1980 . .. Jack makes the first take-off after rebuild. Plane
is based at Bil-Lo Airport, Ft. Calhoun, Nebraska.
Bill Rathjen, who did a great job of authentically
restoring the Robin.
17
Karyl Herman after her memorable flight In Sky Pal.
"
s\tt:\ Pal
32Bravo'" At the 1980 Continental Luscombe Association (CLA)
fly-in, we had the biggest collection of Luscombes ever
to assemble at one time in one place; 71 during the last
weekend of May. At this fly-in, an event occurred which
I'd like to share with you .
The first hint of this event-to-be came on Friday when
Phantasy (my Luscombe, N2368K) and I flew to Colum­
bia , California, landed , and parked next door to some of
our favorite neighbors , our club president Loren Bump's
pretty polished A model , and Sky Pal , a comfortably
familiar partner (whom we followed home from Osh­
kosh '79). Now I'm sure many of you Luscombe Lovers
are aware that Tim Bowers' Sky Pal is the 1979 EAA
Convention's Grand Champion Classic aircraft. Mighty
fine company to be among .
Soo after getting parked and then greeting our
friends , some of whom we hadn't seen for a whole year ,
Tim Bowers and I were chatting . Almost in passing ,
Tim casually mentioned that he'd decided he wanted me
to fly Sky Pal. Me? Almost as casually , I responded
that he'd just given me a superb compliment for which
I was thankful (how many people , even friends , offer
to let you fly a champion airplane?); but I really couldn't
fly Sky Pal , as much as I'd like to. No , I simply couldn't
fly the one-and-only classic champion . . . Not much
more was said about it , and we moved on to other topics.
Saturday morning several of us were up at 5:30 for
the best flight of the day - Dawn Patrol - which is
never better than at the setting of Columbia - foggy
mists lying in the valleys while the sun peeks and then
18
By Karyl H erman EAA 112967, A IC 3772 725 Shelter Creek Lane, #225 San Bruno, CA 94066 Photos by the Author suddenly blossoms over the Sierras . After gently roll­
ing into the grass , we park and go have breakfast.
Then it's time for the scheduled events - th e flour­
bombing/spot and short-field landing contests - a ll
in one flight. Phantasy and I "bomb" the flour-bombing ,
get calculatedly lucky in the spot (first place), forget
to stop short and keep rolling to the turn-off (worst
place), and park.
By now there are quite a few of the "wheels-on­
backwards" type aircraft entering the pattern. Columbia
is a restored Gold Rush town, and a favorite fly-in spot
for weekend pilots . Taking a hangar-flying break be­
side the parked Luscombes , our illustrious neighbor
starts pushing Sky Pal out to go flying . I inquire if Tim
needs any help, and he says , yeah, come on , you're going
to fly.
After a close-encounter-of-the-Bonanza-kind and after
the dust settles, Tim bids me to come on and get in. No ,
Tim , really I can't . Oh come on , it's just like your plane.
Not by a long shot! (It may be the same model with the
same engine, but no way is it "just like" my plane ­
no plane is just like a champion!) Standing by the left
door, Tim says to come on and get in again, and I meekly
obey. (Oh no , he's going to let me fly from the left seat.)
While fastening the seatbelt, he starts explaining the
switches for the radio and generator . At that point , I
get just a wee bit apprehensive - you mean I'm going
solo? Timmy, aren't you going up with me?? No , go fly
- and enjoy yourself! I don't , I really don't believe this
is happening . But Tim .. . He shuts the doot , stands
back and waves. Smiling. (How can he be so casual?)
Well, might as well get on with it. Fit the headset ,
find the mags and pull-to-start, and 32B comes to life
with the accustomed Luscombe sound. By now , the air­
port manager has closed the grass trip, so we begin to
taxi for take-off on the paved runway. Whoops , watch
it, the rudders are different and need more pressure.
Using some brake to correct for the lack of rudder input
in the turn, I discover that 32Bravo's brakes are notice­
ably better than 68Kilo's . After almost fouling up the
first turn, I get the feel for the rudders and don't need
brakes to steer anymore .
In the run-up area , everything checks out as ready,
and we wait for some landing traffic before rolling into
place. As we do so , that familiar feeling of excitement
in the pit of my stomach makes itself known - the same
feeling I get whenever I haven't flown for a while and
am about to do so (but I've already flown twice today ,
so the excitement must be due to being in Sky Pal).
Slowly adding power and starting to roll while waiting
for something to feel different, the tail comes up on
schedule and soon we're airborne! Ah , that sure feels
good - hold her down in ground effect and let the speed
build up. Nice , that familiar feeling again . Hold her
down to the end of the runway, then pull back on the
stick for my favorite zoom climb on take-off. All right!
Feels good! About 2 G's on the meter, airspeed bleed­
ing off, now push over - don't stall it .. .
Now we must do a fly-by for the CLAers down there .
Check for traffic, turn crosswind, check again and turn
downwind . Verifying altitude and airspeed takes a
couple of seconds longer than usual - I have to find the
instruments; they're not quite where I'm used to finding
them. Hey , this plane really feels great - so smooth
and purring, it feels comfortable and familiar. Slow
down on base and final to allow enough room between
us and that 150 ahead so we can have room to build up
speed again for the fly-by ... The Cessna doesn't clear
the runway until the end, so we have to settle for a
high fly-by. We'll have to go around and try that again ,
it just won't do to make a low speed fly-by .
This time around, I begin to think (and get nervous)
about the landing coming up after the next circuit of
the pattern. As we turn crosswind, someone comes up
on the radio and says for me to leave the pattern and
wait. Okay , but who's that? It's Tim and C~cil Shuman
in Cecil's Luscombe, and they're coming up to get some
in-flight photos. OK guys , I'll be over here near the bridge.
In the meantime, let's get a better feel for this plane.
Trying some maneuvers and having difficulty finding
instruments to verify what I'm doing, I decide to forget
about looking at the panel (pretty though it is) and just
fly the airplane by the "seat of my pants". Oh yes, that
works out much better. I do remember to check the oil
pressure/temperature from time to time, but ignore
everything else.
Soon Cecil 's Luscombe is in sight, and with him
another Luscombe - Al LaForge's "Lady Bug" with
brother Fred flying . We switch frequencies so we can
chat and so Tim can get us where he wants us for the
pictures. Oh dear, I don't know if I really want to fly
Sky Pal in tight formation . .. Oh well, just fly the
plane and everything will be all right . Sure enough ,
it is . We fly around, changing places several times , and
the only thing I miss is having the D-windows for spot­
ting my partners . So I tell myself to just pay attention
to the plane I'm flying wing on, and let the other guy
worry about me. Works out great!
Entering the pattern and back on Unicom, Tim hand­
signals for me to take the lead for a fly-by at about 100
feet . Gee , this is great , I almost wish it would go on and
on. Hey gang , look at us-I'm flying the Grand Champion!
Wow! What an indescribable feeling! This really is
happening ...
Turning downwind , the upcoming landing becomes
a decision to make , shall I stall it or wheel it? It might
be nice to try a stall landing, my tailwheel always shim­
mys, so I almost never do one. On the other hand, I'm
more comfortable doing wheelies ... Aw shucks , wheelies
look so good , and I'm happier doing them, let's wheel
Sky Pal on . Turning final, I realize that this historic
(for me) flight is almost over, and what a privilege it
has been. This is definitely one for my logbook , which
shows nothing but "68K", page after page, since I got
my Luscombe. Yes, that's right, 32B is only the second
Luscombe I've soloed . Coming down the last few feet
on final , I let Sky Pal tell me what to do and , "just like"
my Luscombe, she does and soon our main!'> chirp on
the runway - stick forward - and she rolls straight
as an arrow . No rudder-fanning at all, just wait for the
tail to settle to the ground and then add some power for
taxi to the parking area .
Shutting down and climbing out, I'm ecstatic - Tim
let me fly Sky Pal, the Grand Champion Classic!! What
a privilege! Thank you, Tim Bowers, for a flight I'll
never forget!
Tim and Barbara Bowers' 2132 B, Ka ryl Herman's 2368K, Loren
and Adele Bump's 71134.
HOW TO BUILD THE FAMOUS
t7
1
MOISELLE
SANTOS-DUMONT'S MONOPLANE By Arthur E . Joerin and A. Cross, A. M . The Santos-Dumont "Demoiselle": Historical Background By George Hardie, Jr. EAA Historian Part II
Having finished the steering arrangement it would
be wise to take up the construction of the wings . The
wings of the "Demoiselle" are made entirely of bamboo
rods with bamboo or ash lateral beams as shown in
Plate V. However, Clement Bayard, at whose factory
in France these monoplanes are being manufactured,
makes them of poplar or ash . Aluminum tubes have also
been used . It would be advisable , however, to stick to
the bamboo rods which served Santos-Dumont so well.
In order to secure the curves as shown at the top of
Plate V, on the left, it would be sufficient to bend the
rods over a form by force. They may also be bent by
means of a string tied to the ends, drawing them to­
gether, and then plunging them into boiling water for
about 15 minutes . The rods should be given plenty of
time to dry before the strings are removed and they
are placed in position. They will retain their shape if
given time to dry, so no attempt should be made to hasten
matters . If the builder desires to use wood he may pro­
ceed in like manner. The curve is almost the true arc
of a circle.
It is not necessary to bend the rear lateral rod. It
suffices to bend the one in front . The whole plane struc­
Building Santos-Dumont mono­
planes at the Clement Bayard
factory in France.
20
ture is kept rigid by guide wires running from the rods
to the frame as shown in Plate I.
In order to attach the cloth to the extremities of the
rods, it is not necessary to employ any other method than
that shown at C , Plate III. This is the best method
known . As with the steering device the front ends of
the rods have to be covered by means of cloth hemmed
over . This diminishes the friction of the air against the
rods. Santos-Dumont has not always used the same
method of attaching the cloth, but the method shown
here is the one he used on the machine with which he
made the famous flight, and is the method which the
builder is advised to follow.
In the original flyer there was a rod just above the
head of the pilot. It has been thought advisable, however,
to leave this rod out. Santos-Dumont is quite short , and
when he was in the pilot's seat, his head did not reach
the rod . In the machines now being manufactured in
France, the rod is omitted.
The wings completed, it would be well to next under­
take the construction of the frame. The wheels are easily
made, for, save that they have a longer hub , they are
very similar in construction to the ordinary bicycle
wheel. In the construction of these wheels it would be
well to use strong wire spokes , for at times, when the
machine strikes the ground suddenly, great stress is
put upon them . Santos-Dumont experimented a long
time with the wheels before he finally settled on a hub
length of 6 in. This he found was strong enough to sup­
port the machine when he used a 35 hp motor. If a lighter
motor is used, the size of the wheel hubs may be modi­
fied. These hubs are, as may be seen in the drawings ,
simply put on over the tubes and fastened by a cotter
pin. The tubes should be allowed to extend out several
inches beyond the end of the hub. Great care should be
taken in the selection of this lower tube , for almost the
entire weight of the machine comes upon it. It is not
necessary to provide any special bearings for the wheels ,
as it is intended they should work with a slight friction .
It may readily be seen that the wheels are inclined to­
ward one another at the top. The angle of inclination of
that part of the tubing, which forms the axle, is 1 to 9.
This manner of placing the wheels prevents them from
being broken when subjected to a slight jar if the machine
takes to the ground unexpectedly .
The connection of the tubing with the framework of
bamboo is somewhat difficult , but the details of as­
sembling are always the same in principle, and are shown
on Plate VII. The pieces, which are to hold the tubes
are introduced, the shoe is firmly bolted. (See Detail
of Assembly "A" on Plate VII .) If the builder does not
care to prepare these special pieces, the flattened end
of the tube may be affixed to a square piece of metal
by means of an additional bolt. It is considered bett-er,
however , to prepare these special pieces as receptacles
for the ends of the tubes .
It would be imprudent and dangerous to make a
hole in any of the three main bamboo rods which con­
stitute the frame of the machine, for this would detract
from their strength. When we _are ready to attach the
tubing to the frame, it would be well to follow the
method shown on Plate VII . (Detail of Assembly of a
Post with the Bamboo.) Out of a piece of sheet metal a
joint may be formed so as to make a receptacle for the
end of the tube. Provision should be made by a small
piece of metal so that the bamboo will be protected if
the end of the tube should strike it. Pieces of sheet metal
can be wound around the bamboo rod as indicated on
the drawing.
Let us now call your attention to the joint at the
junction of the lower bamboo rods with the two upright
tubes at the inside bearing of each wheel. This fork­
like joint should be brazed in the manner of a bicycle
frame. It may also be forged or made of a piece of sheet
metal forced into shape. There may be some play at the
joint, but this does not matter, as the wire stretchers,
to be put on afterward , will give the necessary strength,
and prevent the pieces from gliding one upon the other.
The machine thus far completed, we may proceed
to attach the piano wire stretchers, and then the wires
controlling the horizontal and vertical rudders and gov­
erning the warping of the planes. The rudder controls
may be installed in accordance with the builder's ideas,
and the motor controls will vary, of course , with the
type of motor used. In the "Demoiselle" the wire regulat­
ing the horizontal rudder is attached to a lever within
easy reach of the pilot's right hand. The vertical rudder
is governed by a wheel at the pilot's left hand. The lever
which controls the warping of the planes is placed be­
hind the pilot's seat. Santos-Dumont operated this by
bending his body to the right or left, the lever fitting
into a tube fastened to his coat in the rear. A side move-
CURVE OF FFONT LONG!TUDINAL BEAM
Left hand Wing
of the"Demoisellc"
P LATE 1Z
or: ASSE:M8L,{"C 'OF THE PIEc e
VICOD WITH THE 2 BAMBOO PIECES
SECT I("N
OF
A
A
A
A
21
L-___________________ ___ ------ - -- - ­
This view gives a good Idea of the location of the gasoline tank and the radiator.
How Santos-Dumont conveyed his aeroplane to the aviation field.
General Dimensions of the "Demoiselle"
SIDE ELEVATION OF FRAME
PLATE YI
1'Au"'S 3
2
O</i?d tC/6~
f ' Gau"e NE' 2S
reI'" ~st//)!f the reet
The
UPOD
whuls are 6/cy cle , wheels 19ii;"1(
metal Gau5e IYE'16
Sheet meta/
PLAN VIEW OF FRAME
Leather seat upon whlch-the "
22
/s to s/t 'll'
View of the "Demoiselle" showing position of motor and
propeller.
ment pulls the rear end of the wing opposite to the side
to which the pilot leans. The balancing of the whole
apparatus, is, therefore , in a manner , automatic. The
pilot has but to bend over to one side in order to balance
the machine. Springs are introduced on the wires which
control the rudders of some of the machines so as to bring
the rudder back to its normal position without effort
on the part of the operator. The seat is a piece of canvas
or leather stretched across the two lower bamboo rods
just behind the wheels.
Santos-Dumont had his motor control so arranged
that he could regulate the supply of gasoline by his foot.
The spark switch may be placed on the steering lever.
These controls may be arranged differently , however ,
with other motors.
It is of prime importance that the motor should be
perfectly balanced. It should be direct connected to the
axle holding the propeller. The gasoline reservoir is
located behind the pilot's seat, the fuel being forced up
into a smaller one just above the motor. In his remark­
able flight from St. Cyr to Buc, the inventor of the mono­
plane used a two-cylinder Darracq motor of 30 hp , which
gave the propeller 1000 rpm. It weighed a little of 99
lb. The ent ire machine weighed 260 lb. without the pilot.
At the end of the crankshaft, opposite the propeller ,
is a pinion and eccentric working the oil pumps. This
pinion also meshes with the gear which operates the
water pumps . The cams which raise the valves at the
same time operate the magneto . The radiator , which
is composed of a great many small copper tubes con­
nected up to a larger tube at the front and rear, is placed
under the main surface of the wings and extends from
the front to the rear of the planes.
Details of the "Demoise"e"
PLATEW
TRU553
2
TRU rS
h-/
7{t
.
5t iffening tIJbe
i'Oiameter
Ther? Bamboo P/eces
for the back lon,Ri t IJd·
inal beams or. t he
~
wings enter m t o_____­
these tIJ bes
r
"iii)
""'"" '-'
I
Tube tor rib
I
tJamboo 01' Frame
.
8amb(}(} of the
Frame c(}nneded
at tne.loid 01'
the 3 tubes
\
atcenter~ _
The lateral tubes arV '
flattened and 3re
.
Joined by a boJt at
t he m idd/(' C317e
DETAI L O F A SSEMBLY
-
Gau~e
B
ofJplicp plale: Nq J.9
:Q. -
.-J~ i 'hole/olel a
. ..,-
crosspIeceP3SS
throuf/h.llp,on
whicl7are rastened
the wlrp stretchers
23
Some of the aircraft displayed in the Museu Aeroespacial - Campo Dos Afonsos - Rio. On the left are the
Santos Dumont 14 BIS and Demoiselle, a Muniz M-7, a CAP 4 and others.
\W~~!)f!~ (]D~!)~~~ ~[J) lB[p!)7Z ~~ By J. C. Boscardin EAA 127040, A IC 4376 Silveira Peixoto 1077 80,000 Curitiba Panama Brazil Photos Courtesy of the Author
_J 't ....... ~..\..01
~,....
~I':'II
'---. _..:._",::;::::r
1929 Curtiss Fledgling, a pioneer Brazilian airmail plane.
24
Like some other large countries with partially de­
veloped areas, Brazil has had a dual attitude regarding
the importance of aircraft since the beginning of this
century .
There have been short periods of time when both
private concerns and government-sponsored facilities
have attempted to design and build aircraft. Since 1910
the·military has assembled and operated imported planes
and after 1930 several U. S. and German types have
been built under license.
In Rio de Janeiro, in 1914, the Brazilian Navy or­
ganized a naval aircraft facility where, with the help
of a Mr. Horton Hoover, and others , many naval aircraft
were constructed. This American individual is named
because he remained in Brazil where he worked in an
institute at the State University in Sao Paulo under
Frederico Brotero making several studies , some of which
had been contracted by the Navy .
The group designed and built various airplanes using
native Brazilian materials such as wood, plywood and
fabric. Wood was used for longerons, struts and propellers.
Between 1930 and 1950, this group known as the
I.P.T. turned out some 2 dozen prototypes. The most
prominent plane was a high wing monoplane similar to
A view inside the Museu Aeroespacial - Campo Dos Afonsos ­
Rio. The Curtiss Fledgling on the left is airworthy.
EAA member J. C. Boscardin and a Fleet biplane. Fairchild
PT-' 9 in background.
the J-3 Cub, produced in 1934. This aircraft called the
"Paulistinhas" was powered by a 3 cylinder, 45 hp engine
and approximately 1,000 examples were manufactured.
While this work was being done in Sao Paulo State,
a Naval factory in Rio was assembling imported planes
a.nd manufacturing under license such types as the Focke­
Wulf FW-44 and FW-56. After the start of WWII pro­
duction changed to Fairchild PT-19s and later to Fok­
ker trainers.
The private aviation industry in Rio was represented
by a naval shipbuilder, Henrique Lage who owned a
sizeable facility and hired the French designer, Mr. Renee
Vandaelle. By 1934 the serialized production of planes,
the M-7 and M-9, designed by Guedes Muniz had begun .
Mr. Muniz studied in France where he constructed one
or two prototypes as a student. The M-7 and M-9 were
biplane trainers powered by Gipsy engines.
In 1938-39 the Henrique Lage factory began to pro­
duce the HL series. The HL-1 was a Piper-like high
wing monoplane and the HL-6 was a low wing aerobatic
trainer. Even a single, light trimotor craft was built.
After 1945 there was a "house cleaning" program
and many training and general use aircraft used during
WWII were scrapped. Many good, vintage aircraft in
flyable condition were dismantled and the components
simply disappeared. More than 2,000 airplanes dis­
tributed during the war effort to clubs and schools,
were reduced to a few dozen . Planes like the Focke­
Wulf Strosser were lost while some American Fleet
2's and British Tiger Moths survived.
Nowadays it isn't uncommon to see a PT-19 in use
by an Aero Club as an aerobatic trainer. A single PT-22
is being flown by one of the clubs.
We were highly frustrated when governmental ac­
tion resulted in the scrapping of two FW-44's. We have
succeeded in restoring a Fleet 2 and some gliders in­
cluding a Kranich II which is one of the most gratify­
ing of all to fly.
At one time during 1944 a Brazilian facility was pro­
ducing one plane a day including a large number of
Piper-like monoplanes, the M- 7, a biplane trainer re­
sembling Moths and Buckers, and the HL-6, a 2 place
low wing aircraft with very good performance.
In 1960 we helped with the restoration of one of
the last HL-6 aircraft. This gave us a good opportunity
to evaluate its performance and other general character­
istics . I think this plane constitutes the biggest in-
terest for the foreign reader and I will try to obtain
some figures. Examples of the HL-6 can be seen in two
Brazilian museums, one in Sao Paulo and the other in
Afonsos-Rio which also displays a flyable Curtiss
Fledgling.
As late as 1950 there were some Ju 52's, Weihe's, and
even a flyable Me 108 but they have since vanished.
American types such as Wacos and Stearmans have
deteriorated from abandonment mostly because of a
lack of operable powerplants.
Today we can only see a possible restoration project,
some Aeronca Chiefs, 2 or 3 Luscombe Silvaires, a
Bucker Jungmann or two, and perhaps 2 or 3 Tiger
Moths .
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
MARCH 15-22 - LAKELAND, FLORIDA - 7th Annual Sun 'N Fun EM
Fly-In. First big fly-in of the year. Don 't miss it - make your plans
now.
MAY 1-3 - BURLINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA - Fly-In. Antiques,
Classics , Homebuilts, Ultralights and Warbirds invited. Awards
and banquet Saturday night. For further information, contact Geneva
McKiernan, 5301 Finsbury Place, Charlotte, NC 28211.
JUNE 5-7 - MERCED, CALIFORNIA - 24th Annual West Coast Antique
Fly-In sponsored by the Merced Pilot's Association. Early Bird re­
ception, dinner and dance Friday night; Award Banquet Saturday
night; Air Show Saturday and Sunday. For further information, con­
tact Don or Dee Human, 209/358-3487 or write, Fly-In Committee,
P.O. Box 3212, MerCed, CA 95340.
AUGUST 1-8 - OSHKOSH, WISCONSIN - 29th Annual EAA Fly-In
Convention. It is never too early to start making plans for the world 's
GREATEST AVIATION EVENT.
AUGUST 9-15 - FOND DU LAC, WISCONSIN national Championships.
12th Annual lAC Inter­
SEPTEMBER 30 - OCTOBER 4 - TULLAHOMA, TENNESSEE Annual EAA National Fall Fly-In . Don 't miss this one.
3rd
OCTOBER 16-18 - CAMDEN, SOUTH CAROLINA - Fly-In. Antiques,
Classics, Homebuilts, Ultralights, and Warbirds invited. Awards
and banquet Saturday night. For further information, contact Geneva
McKiernan , 5301 Finsbury Place, Charlotte, NC 28211 .
25
26 AVAILABLE BACK ISSUES OF The VINTAGE AIRPLANE 1973 1974 1975 -
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All Are Available
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November
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POBER PIXIE - VW powered parasol - unlimited in
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DERRICK INDUSTRIES , INC. - Repair Station 464-61.
Wooden propeller repair and manufacturing. 1565 North
Broadway, Stockton, CA 95205. Phone 209/462-7381.
Wanted: 120 hp upright Gipsy II engine or 145 hp in­
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Avenue, Cedarburg, WI 53012.
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,4~P~,1HC.
ra ;
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Fall.ington, P~. 19054
.•~
(215) 295 4115
l ::w::
I
1. ·.•VISAI!I!!.-••- -j'
:!.:C:"
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