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STRAIGHT AND LEVEL

by Bob Lickteig
In planning "The World ofSport Avia-
tion," Oshkosh '88, the EAA Antique/
Classic Division has scheduled a week of
groupactivities. Listedbeloware thedates
and chairmenofeachevent. Pleasecontact
any ofthe chairman ifyou need additional
information orto make reservations.
Antique/Classic Fly-out
The fifth annual Antique/Classic Con-
vention Fly-Out for members and guests is
scheduled for Tuesday, August 2. We will
beflying to Shawano,Wisconsin,55 miles
northofOshkosh.ShawanoFlyingService
will be our host. Two sod and one hard
surface runway will be open, plus a sea-
planebase- sowe'reextendingan invita-
tion for all float planes to join us.
Briefing 7:00 a.m. at Antique/Classic
Headquarters, departure 8-8:30 a.m.; re-
turn I :30-2:00 p.m. in time for the air
show.
Chairman - Bob Lumley, 414/255-
6832.
Antique/Classic Picnic
The Antique/Classic Picnic will be held
at the EAANatureCenterSundayevening,
July 31, starting at 6:00p.m.Thecommit-
tee has arranged for refreshments and the
serving of a pig roast with all the trim-
mings. Ticketsare$6.00- areal bargain,
and will be on sale at the Antique/Classic
Headquarters and must be purchased by
6:00 p. m. Saturday, July 30, as we must
advise the cook of the number of people
we will have 24 hours in advance.
Chairman - Steve Nesse, 507/373-
1674.
Antique/Classic Workshop
The Antique/Classic Workshop located
next to the Antique/Classic Headquarters
will again be in operation throughout the
Conventionweek.Pleasecomebyandhelp
with the completionofourprojectand gain
the hands-on experience ofactually work-
ing on a restoration.
Chairman - George Meade, 414/228-
7701.
2 MAY 1988
Antique/Classic ParadeofFlight
The Antique/Classic annual Parade of
Flight will be staged on Monday, August
I, as the main part of the air show when
the field is closed. Briefing for the event
will be at 1:00 p.m.at the Antique/Classic
Headquarters.
Chairman - Phil Coulson, 616/624-
6490.
Antique/Classic Participant Plaque
The Antique/Classic Division will pre-
sentto the ownerofeachregisteredaircraft
a recognition plaque with a colored 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.
Chairman - Jack Copeland, 617/336-
7245.
Antique/Classic Riverboat Cruise
The Antique/Classic Riverboat Dinner
Cruise will be held Saturday evening, July
30, sailing at 8:00 p.m. from the Pioneer
Inn dock. Due to the limited number of
passengers, the tickets are offered for sale
in advance through the mail. If there are
any remaining tickets, they will be on sale
at the Antique/Classic Headquarters up to
the time ofsailing.
Chairman - Jeannie Hill, 815/943-
7205.
Antique/Classic Parking
Arrangements have been made for the
TypeClubs,andany individualswhowish,
to park their type aircraft together. The
parkingcommittee has developed a simple
typeparkingplan. Informationand parking
instructions will be mailed to you. Contact
the chairman.
Chairman - Art Morgan, 414/442-
3631.
Antique/Classic Interview Circle
The Antique/Classic Interview Circle
will be expanded this year and will
schedule two interviews per day. If you
have an interesting aircraft and would like
to be included in this program for an inter-
view, please contact the Chairman so you
can arrange to be included in his schedule
at your convenience.
Chairman - Kelly Viets, 913/828-
3518.
Antique/Classic Type Club Headquar-
ters
All type clubs are invited to set up their
headquartersin thetypeclubtent. Wehave
again set up a larger tent so there will be
enough room.
Chairman - Butch Joyce, 919/427-
0216.
Antique/Classic Information Booth
The membership and information booth
will be located outside the Antique/Classic
Headquarters. Complete information on
membership and Convention activities can
be obtained here.
Chairman - Kelly Viet s, 913/828-
3518.
Antique/Classic Aircraft Awards
Antique judging, all categories, Chair-
man - Dale Gustafson, 317/293-4430.
Classic Judging, all categories, Chair-
man - George York, 419/429-4378.
Antique/Classic Forums
Acompletescheduleofforums covering
all makes and models of Antique/Classic
aircraft will be presented throughout Con-
vention week. These forums will be con-
ducted by the most qualified individuals
available. Check Convention program for
complete details.
Chairman - John Berendt, 507/263-
2414.
Antique/Classic Photo Contest
The fifth annual Antique/Classic
AmateurPhotoContest will be held during
Oshkosh '88. All contestants must register
at the Antique/Classic headquartersand re-
ceive up-to-date contest rules, please. Re-
member, photos taken enroute, during the
Convention or on the return home are all
eligible for the contest.
Chairman - Jack McCarthy, 317/371-
1290.
Antique/Classic Hall ofFame Reunion
The Annual Hall of Fame Reunion for
previous Grand and Reserve Grand Cham-
pion aircraftwill again be held at Oshkosh
'88. Aspecialdisplayarea, specialawards,
and a special fly-by recognition are
planned. All previous winners are encour-
agedto bringtheiraircraftbacktoOshkosh
for the members and guests to enjoy.
Chairman - Dan Neuman, 612/571-
0893.
OX-S Aviation Pioneers
The OX-5 Aviation Pioneers headquar-
ters tent is located in the Antique/Classic
area.
Chairman - Bob Wallace, 301/686-
3279.
PleasecheckyourOshkosh '88Conven-
tion program and EAA Antique/Classic
headquarters for complete details of all
events.
It's going to be a great Convention,
make the Antique/Classic area your head-
quarters for Oshkosh '88.
Please remember, we're bettertogether.
Welcome aboard - join us and you have
it all.


MAY 1988 Vol. 16, No.5
Copyright"' 1988by the EAA AntiquelClassic Division,Inc.All rights reserved.
PUBLICATION STAFF
PUBLISHER
Tom Poberezny
VICE-PRESIDENT
MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS
DickMatt
EDITOR
Mark Phelps
ARTDIRECTOR
MikeDrucks
MANAGING EDITOR/ADVERTISING
MaryJones
ASSOCIATE EDITORS
NormanPetersen
DickCavin
FEATURE WRITERS
GeorgeA. Hardie,Jr.
DennisParks
EDITORIALASSISTANT
Carol Krone
STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS
JimKoepnick
Carl Schuppel
JeffIsom
EAAANTIQUE/CLASSIC
DIVISION, INC.
OFFICERS
President VicePresident
R.J.lickteig M.C."Kelly"Viets
1718Lakewood RI. 2, Box128
AlbertLea,MN56007 Lyndon,KS66451
507/373-2922 913/828-3518
Secretary Treasurer
GeorgeS.York E.E."Buck"Hilbert
181 SlobodaAve. P.O.Box145
Mansfield,OH44906 Union,IL60180
419/529-4378 815/923-4591
DIRECTORS
JohnS.Copeland PhilipCoulson
9JoanneDrive 28415SpringbrookDr.
Westborough,MA01581 Lawton,MI49065
617/366-7245 616/624-6490
WilliamA.Eickhoff StanGomoll
41515thAve., N.E. 104290thLane,NE
SI.Petersburg,FL33704 Minneapolis,MN55434
813/823-2339 6121784-1172
DaleA.Gustafson EspieM_Joyce,Jr.
7724ShadyHillDrive Box468
Indianapolis,IN46278 Madison,NC27025
317/293-4430 919/427-0216
ArthurR.Morgan GeneMorris
3744North51stBlvd. 115CSteveCourt,R.A.2
Milwaukee,WI53216 Roanoke,TX76262
414/442-3631 817/491-9110
DanielNeuman RayOlcott
1521 BerneCircleW. 104Bainbridge
Minneapolis,MN55421 Nokomis,FL34275
612/571-0893 813/488-8791
S.H. " Wes" Schmid
2359 Lefeber Avenue
Wauwatosa, WI 53213
4141771-1545
DIRECTOR EMERITUS
S.J. Wittman
7200 S.E.85th Lane
Ocala,FL 32672
904/245-7768
ADVISORS
RobertC."Bob"Brauer JohnA.Fogerty
9345S. Hoyne RR2,Box70
Chicago,IL60620 Roberts,WI54023
3121779-2105 715/425-2455
RobertD."Bob"Lumley StevenC.Nesse
N104W20387 2009HighlandAve.
WillowCreekRoad AlbertLea,MN56007
Colgate,WI53017 507/373-1674
414/255-6832
Contents
2 StraightandLevel/byBobLickteig
4 AlCNews/byMarkPhelps
5 LeHerstotheEditor
6 Calendar
7 VintageLiterature/byDennisPark
9 Member'sProjects/byNormPetersen
10 InterestingMember/byD.F.Neuman
12 Rose'sRyans/byNormPetersen
15 MomentsfromSun'nFun/byMarkPhelps
Page 20
'-
16 Scout'sHonor/byNinoLama
20 UpsideDownErcoupe/byMaryJones
24 BiplaneBoilermaker/byMarkPhelps
27 MysteryPlane/byGeorgeHardy
28 VintageTrader
FRONT COVER ...A beautiful formation photo of three Ryans on a Page 24
warm summer day over Illinois.The full story of these airplanes and
theirowner, Bill Rose can be found on page 12.
(Photoby Ted Koston)
BACK COVER ...Stearman C-3D. Furnished with a war-surplus
Wright-Hisso 180-hp engine, this was an attempt in 1928 to build a
cheaper version of the Whirlwind powered C-3B series. Apparently
only two were buill. The aircraft pictured here (N6433, sin 104) was
restored in 1957byEd "Skeeter"CarlsonofSpokane,Washington.In
1976itwasrebuiltasaC-3BwithaWhirlwindengineandre-registered
as NC1598, the registration number of the first Stearman flown by
Varney Airlines. (Photo from Boeing, clo Dick Taylor;believed to be-
long to PeterBowers)
ThewordsEAA,ULTRALIGHT,FLYWITHTHE FIRSTTEAM, SPORTAVIATION,andthelogosofEXPERIMENTAL
AIRCRAFTASSOCIATION INC., EAA INTERNATIONALCONVENTION,EAA ANTIQUEICLASSIC DIVISION INC.,
INTERNATIONALAEROBATIC CLUB INC., WARBIRDS OF AMERICA INC., are registered trademarks.THE EAA
SKY SHOPPE and logos of the EAA AVIATION FOUNDATION INC. and EAA ULTRALIGHT CONVENTION are
trademarks of the above associations and their use by any person other than the above associations is strictly
prohibited.
Editorial Policy:Readersareencouragedtosubmitstoriesand photographs.Policyopinionsexpressedinarticlesare
solelythose oftheauthors. Responsibilityforaccuracyin reporting restsentirelywith thecontributor.Materialshould
be sentto:Editor,The VINTAGE AIRPLANE,Wittman Airfield,Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. Phone:414/426-4800.
The VINTAGE AIRPLANE (ISSN 0091-6943) is published and owned exclusivelyby EAA Antiquel Classic Division.
Inc. of the Experimental AircraftAssociation,Inc.and ispublished monthlyat Wittman Airfield,Oshkosh.WI 54903
3086. Second Class Postage paid at Oshkosh, WI 54901 and additional mailing offices. Membership rates for
EAA Antiquel Classic Division, Inc. are $18.00 for current EAA members for 12 month period of which $12.00 is
for the publication of The VINTAGE AIRPLANE.Membership isopen :0 all who are interested in aviation.
ADVERTISING- Antiquel Classic Division doesnotguaranteeorendorse anyproductoffered through ouradvertis-
ing.We inviteconstructive criticism and welcome anyreportofinferiormerchandiseobtainedthroughouradvertising
so that corrective measurescan be taken.
Postmaster:SendaddresschangestoEAAAntiquel ClassicDivision,Inc.,WittmanAirfield,Oshkosh,WI54903-3086.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 3
'(3ews
Compiled by Mark Phelps
C.G. TAYLOR 1898 - 1988
C.G. Taylor, former partnerofWilliam
T. Piper and designer of the Taylorcraft
line ofairplanes died on March 29, 1988
inTexas.Hewouldhavebeen90thisJune.
HISTORICALVIDEO INTERVIEWS
Anyone with leads on pioneer aviators
whomay be interviewedatOshkoshduring
this year'sFly-in should notify the Pioneer
Aviation Video Committee. Thegoal is to
captureaviation' shistorical peopleon tape
for future generations. Interview sessions
during the convention can be scheduled at
theinterviewee'sconveninece.Ifyouknow
of someone who's aviation legacy should
be preserved, contact Bob Lumly, Willow
Creek Road,Colgate,WI 53017,414/255-
6832
ANTIQUE/CLASSIC AWARDS
The results ofthejudging atSun 'nFun
1988 are in. Congratulations to the
winnners and all other AntiquelClassic
members who had airplanes at the fly-in.
The attendance was impressive-240 An-
tiquelClassic aircraft registered over the
courseoftheweek. Expecttoseelotsmore
about Sun 'n Fun ' 88 in upcoming issues
ofTHE VINTAGE AIRPLANE.
Antiques
GrandChampion:
Fairchild KR21 N362N
Jim Kimball
EAA 49344, AlC 8908
Zellwood, Florida
Reserve GrandChampion:
PiperJ-3 N32957
Barbara Fidler
EAA 124962, A/C 10377
Alva, Florida
PastGrandChampion:
TravelairD-4ooo
Rod Spanier
EAA 83764, AlC 1001
Lakeland, Florida
Golden Age 1927 - Earlier:
Waco 10 N45534
John Stilley
EAA 123683, A/C 3853
Merritt Island, Florida
Silver Age 1928 - 1932:
New Standard D-25 N930V
John Thomson
EAA 4396
Ellenton, Florida
Contemporary Age 1933 - 1945:
Piper J5A N354GF
Ron Frank
EAA 61563, A /C 2017
Lake Angelus, Michigan
Best Custom:
Fairchild 24 N28690
Ed Wegner
EAA 33887, AlC 136
Plymouth, Wisconsin
Best WWII Era:
Stearman PTI7 N9681N
R. Denny Gamer
EAA 293729
Rockmart, Georgia
Best Bi-Plane:
Waco RNF N11264
J.L. Gardner
EAA 48413
Milton, Florida
Best Monoplane:
Piper J-3 N32957
Barbara Fidler
EAA 124962, AlC 10377
Alva, Florida
Best Open Cockpit:
Stearman N65052
Mike Danforth
Robbinsville, North Carolina
Best Cabin:
Stinson SM-2AA
Bob Hedgecock
EAA 262955, A/C 10205
Barnesville, Georgia
OutstandingAircraft:
Beech Staggerwing N17SW
Jim Gorman
EAA 29182, A/C 306
George York
EAA 11310, AlC 1085
Mansfield, Ohio
OutstandingAircraft:
1939 Taylorcraft N23663
A.C. Hutson
EAA 185948, AlC 7122
Griffin, Georgia
Classics
GrandChampion:
Piper PAil NC78661
Classic Flights
Charleston, South Carolina
Reserve Grand Champion:
Cessna 140 N5332C
Rick Trimble
EAA 266730
Soddy, Tennessee
Past Grand Champion:
Piper PA-12 NC3648M
Clyde Smith, Jr.
EAA 48316
Loganton, Pennsylvania
Best Restored - Up to 100 UP:
Aeronca 7AC NC82650
Mendel Ray Ackerman
EAA 164495
Leesville, South Carolina
John H. Gardner
EAA 260594
Cayce, South Carolina
Ken Harrill
EAA 181880
Columbia, South Carolina
Xen Motsinger
EAA 19886
Cayce, South Carolina
Best Restored - 101 to 165 HP:
Stinson N389C
Butch Walsh
EAA 95866, A/C 11988
Arrington, Virginia
Best Restored - Over 165 UP:
Swift NC90373
Bill & Geraldine Jennings
EAA 186006, A/C 7895
Dalton, Georgia
Best Custom - Up to 100 UP:
Cessna 140 NI40AB
Angelo Fraboni
EAA 114926, A/C 7257
Monona, Wisconsin
Best Custom - 101 to 165 UP:
Piper PA22-20 N2818P
Barbara Fidler
EAA 124962, A/C 10377
Lakeland, Florida
Best Custom - Over 165 UP:
Swift N41P
Roy Harmening
EAA 199030
Clairton, Pennsylvania
OutstandingofType:
Ercoupe N94707
Burt Ellegaard
EAA 84292
Shakopee, Minnesota
OutstandingofType:
Luscombe 8A N1197K
A. Allen Arbuthnot
EAA 119679, AIC 3500
Lake Alfred, Florida
OutstandingofType:
Funk N77724
Dan Towery II
EAA 30621, A/C 10743
Dover, Delaware
OutstandingofType:
Cessna 195 N2193C
Bob Silwanicz
EAA 224096
Pompano Beach, Florida
4 MAY 1988
Letters TO The Editor<J1;.1
~ ~
! . .1,[
Dear Jack,
Congratulations on the new entry in The
Vintage Airplane (January) titled "The
Time Capsule." It is just great.
You asked for comments, so here is the
tiny bit I can add: I) The Seversky 2-PA-L
is the one test pilot Jimmie Taylor qualified
for the 1937 Thompson Race at 223.173
mph (at Cleveland).
2) The Crosby CR-4 is indeed from
1938. Recognition points for '38 are: a)
trumpet-shaped exhaust (its end is between
the gear doors), b) Sherwin-Williams paint
logo on the rudder, c) hydraulic retract on
a stub tail skid. Recognition points for '39:
six separate short exhaust stacks , b) Aero
Industries Tech logo on rudder, c) spring
type skid.
3) The Gwinn Aircar. Terrific! How do
I get a photo?
4) Obviously your volume of Revolution
in the Sky and mine are different. This one is
dated 1964 and says: c/N 150 . . . Interstate
Aero Corp., Cleveland (1933-35) . Involved
3 accs., final one . .. 9-14-35 ... Skyways
Inc., Cleveland (1935-37) and Samuel R.
Sague, Cleveland, 1937. The last time I
saw that "Sirius" it was sitting behind the
Sundorph hangar with a "For Sale" sign on
it. The hangar talk was that it was just too
expensive to fly. Probably 1940 on that.
Sorry that I can't tell you more. Keep up
the good work and best of everything.
Regards,
Ted Businger
(EAA 93833, NC 2333)
Rt. 2, Box 280
Willow Springs, MO 65793
Dear Ben,
In a few days I will send my money to
become a member of EAA.
Enclosed I am sending pictures of a
Miles Magister. It is 50 years old (1938)
and in good flying condition and nearly 100
percent original. It is the property of the
"Aero Club San Martin, " Mendoza, Argen-
tina and they would like to sell it.
If some members of the Antique/Classic
Division have an interest in it, they could
write to: Sr. Oscar A. Charparin, Aero
Club San Martin, CC 127 (5570), San Mar-
tin - Mendoza , Argentina.
Sincerely,
Alberto Catania
153 Shoreham Drive
Downsview, Ontario, Canada M3N I S8
NICKED-KNOCKEDPROPS
The metal propeller appears to be one of
the most durable parts of the modem light
aircraft; and indeed it is, when properly
maintained. But as an instrument of thrust,
it has more pressure exerted against it than
any other part of the aircraft. The blades
are designed and constructed in such a
manner as to withstand maximum power
loading, but when the shape of the blade is
marred or disturbed, its inherent strength
can be reduced to a point where blade fail-
ure in flight is possible . Such failure can
take place entirely without warni ng.
Most pilots find it hard to believe that a
small cut or nick in a sturdy metal propeller
can lead to a broken prop. To understand
how this is possible, it helps to know some-
thing about the stress and force to which a
propeller in action is subjected.
The most obvious force is centrifugal-
the rotating action which exerts an outward
pull on the blades. If you imagine an enor-
mous giant trying to draw your arm out of
your socket, exerting a force of 7 ,500 times
the weight of your arm, you can appreciate
the strain on the blade.
The revolving blade is also subject to a
centrifugal twisting force, which may be
visualized as the effect of a gigantic hand
attempting to flatten the blade, exerting a
force as high as 20,000 pounds per square
inch . Again, the thrust exerted by the pro-
peller results in a forward pull of the
blades. Straining the engine to pull the
plane out of a mudhole can result in an
out-of-track prop. These two kinds of stress
produce lines of force running across the
face of the blade.
But the kind of stress which is believed
responsible for most blade failures, in con-
junction with surface damage in piston-
drive aircraft , is the vibratory stress set up
by the engine forces conveyed to the pro-
peller by the crankshaft to which it is
bolted. This produces oscillating forces
within the blade which change patterns as
the engine rpm changes . The locations on
the surface of the blade where maximum
bending occurs are called nodes; at these
locations the greatest amount of stress oc-
curs. Even slight damage at these points
can seriously weaken the propeller.
Any mechanical damage to the prop
creates an opportunity for blade failure.
Nicks, cuts, or corrosion pits can set up
stress points by interrupting lines of force.
Certificated mechanics are trained to round
out depressions in the blade in such a man-
ner as to minimize the concentration force
at a given point.
The ordinary preflight inspection tends
to scan the propeller. The pilot may do
nothing more than run his eye down the
leading edge of the blade and, if nothing
catches his attention , move on. What he
should do, realizing the consequences of
an in-flight propeller failure, is to scrutinize
and feel-with clean, dry hands-the entire
surface of the blade. Nicks or cuts that es-
cape the eye are often easily perceptible to
the fingers . Inspection is easier and more
accurate if the blade is kept clean. This is
facilitated by occasional waxing with a
paste wax, which helps prevent corrosion.
Decals on a prop, incidentally, have been
known to permit the accumulation of hid-
den corrosion.
Note that the removal of small nicks or
defects is not "preventive maintenance,"
which may be performed by the pilot or
owner, but is defined in FAR Part 43 as
"minor repairs," and requires the service of
a qualified mechanic.
One little nick could knock you out of
the sky .
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 5
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
MAY 21-22 - NORTH HAMPTON, NEW HAMP-
SHIRE - 12th Annual Aviation Flea Market at
Hampton Airfield. Anything aviation related
okay. Food available. Contact: 603/964-6749.
MAY 21-22 - HAMMOND, LOUISIANA -
Louisiana Balloon Festival and EAA Air Show
sponsored by EAA Chapters 244, 261 and 697.
Trophies. Louisiana Championship Fly-In
Series Event No.1. Contact: Jim Riviere, 604
Chambertin Drive, Kenner, LA 70065, 504/467-
1505.
MAY 21-22 - LIVE OAK, FLORIDA - Florida
Sport Aviation Antique and Classic Associa-
tion, EAA AlC Chapter 1 Fly-In at Kittyhawk
Estates. Contact: Rod Spanier, 502 James-
town Avenue, Lakeland, FL 33801, 813/665-
5572.
MAY 27-29 - WATSONVILLE, CALIFORNIA-
24th West Coast Antique Fly-In and Air Show
at Watsonville Airport. Contact: Watsonville
Chamber of Commerce, 4081724-3849.
MAY 27-29 - LAKE GENEVA, WISCONSIN -
2nd Annual Twin Bonanza Association conven-
tion at the Americana Lake Geneva Resort.
Contact: Twin Bonanza Association, 19684
Lakeshore Drive, Three Rivers, M149093, 616/
279-2540.
JUNE 3-5 - MERCED, CALIFORNIA - 31st
Merced West Coast Antique Fly-In at Merced
Municipal Airport. Contact: Merced Pilots As-
sociation, P. O. Box 2312, Merced, CA 95344
or linton Wollen, 2091722-6666 after 5 p.m.
JUNE 3-5 - BARTLESVILLE, OKLAHOMA - 2nd
Annual National Biplane Fly-in at Frank Phillips
Field, featuring a first-ever - Concours de Ele-
gance! Be part of the largest gathering of bip-
lanes since WW II. Modern factory type aircraft
invited and welcomed. Sponsored by the Na-
tional Biplane Association (NBA) and the
Bartlesville Chamber of Commerce. Contact:
Charles W. Harris, Chairman, 9181742-7311,
or Mary Jones, Executive Director, 918/299-
2532. Address inquiries on NBA membership
to NBA, Hangar 5, 4-J Aviation, Jones-River-
side Airport, Tulsa, OK 74132.
JUNE 4-5 - INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - 1st An-
nual Airplane Gathering, saluting replica, mili-
tary, classic and sport aircraft at Mt. Comfort
Airport. Sponsored by the EAA Chapter 900
and the Central Indiana Sport Flyer Associa-
tion. Contact: Fred Jungclaus, 317/636-4891
(days) or 317/342-3235 (eves).
JUNE 4-5 - COLDWATER, MICHIGAN - 4th An-
nual Fairchild Reunion. Contact: Mike Kelly, 22
Cardinal Drive, Coldwater, MI49036, 517/278-
7654.
JUNE 5 - DEKALB, ILLINOIS - EAA Chapter
241 Breakfast at DeKalb-Taylor Municipal Air-
port from 7 a.m. to noon. Contact: Jerry Thorn-
hill, 3121683-2781.
JUNE 10-12 - MIDDLETOWN, OHIO - 4th Na-
tional Aeronca gathering, celebrating the 60th
anniversary of Aeronca, including tours of the
Aeronca factory and the U.S.A.F. Museum.
Banquet on Saturday night with speakers and
judged aircraft awards. Contact: Jim
Thompson, Box 102, Roberts, IL 60962,217/
395-2522.
JUNE 11-12 - HILLIARD, FLORIDA - Florida
Sport Aviation Antique and Classic Associa-
tion, EAA AlC Chapter 1 Fly-In at Hilliard Air
Park. Contact: Rod Spanier, 502 Jamestown
Avenue, Lakeland, FL33801, 813/665-5572.
JUNE 11-12 - MANSFIELD, LOUISIANA -
Northwest Louisiana Fly-in, DeSoto Parish Air-
port. Sponsored by EAA Chapter 343, Flying
Events, aircraft judging, camping. Louisiana
Championship Fly-In Series Event No.2. Con-
tact: Larry Pierce, Route 5, Box 585,
Shreveport, LA 71107, 318/929-2377.
JUNE 12 - AURORA, ILLINOIS - EAA Chapter
579 Fly-lnlDrive-ln breakfast and airportlFBO
open house, Aurora Municipal Airport. Contact:
Alan Shackleton, 312/466-4193 or Bob Rieser,
Airport Manager, 312/466-7000.
JUNE 14-19 - OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA
- Aerospace America 1988 Air Show and
Trade Exposition. Contact: Tom Jones, Air
Show Director 405/681-3000.
JUNE 16-18 - LAKEVIEW, ARKANSAS - Na-
tional Meyers Association Fly-in and Seminar
at Gaston's Resort. Contact: Wm. E. Gaffney,
26 Rt. 17K, Newburgh, NY 12550
JUNE 17-19 - EL CAJON, CALIFORNIA - 6th
Annual West Coast Travel Air Fly-In. Join the
biplane fun. Contact: Jerry Impellezzeri, 4925
Wilma Way, San Jose, CA 95124.
JUNE 18 - NEWPORT NEWS, VIRGINIA-16th
Annual Colonial Fly-In sponsored by EAA
Chapter 156 at Patrick Henry Airport. Contact:
Chet Sprague, 8 Sinclair Road, Hampton, VA
23669, 8041723-3904.
JUNE 19 - ANDERSON, INDIANA - EAA Chap-
ter 226 Fly-In Breakfast. Contact: 317/378-
0590.
JUNE 19 - FRIENDSHIP, WISCONSIN - 8th An-
nual Father's Day Fly-in at Legion Field spon-
sored by Adams County Aviation Association.
Pancake breakfast at 0730. Static displays,
crafts, antique engines, etc. 60 miles due west
Oshkosh VOR. Camping. Monitor 122.9. Con-
tact: Roger Davenport, 608/339-6810.
JUNE 23-26 - GRAND LAKE VACATION RE-
SORT, OKLAHOMA - International Bird Dog
Association annual meeting and fly-in al
Golden Falcon Airpark, Grand Lake Vacation
Resort. Contact: Phil Phillips, 505/897-4174.
JUNE 23-26 - HAMILTON, OHIO - 29th Annual
National Waco Reunion. Contact: National
Waco Club, 700 Hill Avenue, Hamilton, OH
45015.
JUNE 24-26 - PAULS VALLEY, OKLAHOMA-
Oklahoma City Chapter of AAA Fly-In. Contact:
George Blackmore, 4051789-6281 or Bud Sut-
ton, 405/392-5608.
JUNE 25-26 - ORANGE, MASSACHUSETTS -
12th Annual New England Regional EAA Fly-In
sponsored by EAA Chapter 726. Vendors, flea
market, food, trophies. Contact: Richard
Walsh, Municipal Airport, Orange, MA 01364,
627/544-8189.
JUNE 29-JULY 2 - AMES, IOWA - Ercoupe
Owners Club National Convention, Ames Air-
port. Contact: Shirley Brittian, 2070 Hwy. 92,
Ackworth, IA 50001 , 515/961-6609.
JULY 8-10 - 16th Annual Taylorcraft Fly-In/Reun-
ion at Barber Airport, three miles north of Al-
liance. Food, fellowship and flying. Chat with
the people who built your Taylorcraft. Contact:
Bruce Bixler, 216/823-9748.
JULY 10 - WILLIAMS, ARIZONA - 3rd Annual
Fly-In Breakfast at Williams Municipal Airport.
Sponsored by EAA Chapter 856. Awards and
displays. Contact: Larry Ely, 602/635-2978 or
2151.
JULY 16-17 - SCHENECTADY, NEW YORK-
Northeast Flight '88 Air show at Schenectady
County Airport, sponsored by American Red
Cross and Empire State Aerosciences
Museum. Contact: Steve Israel, 518/382-0041,
Northeast Flight '88, 419 Mohawk Mall,
Schenectady, NY 12304.
JULY 17-22 - FAIRBANKS, ALASKA - Interna-
tional Cessna 170 Association Convention at
Fairbanks International Airport. Convention
site: Sophie Station Motel. Contact: Convention
Chairmen, Rick and Cheryl Schikora, 1919 Lat-
hrop, Drawer 17, Fairbanks, AK 99701, 907/
456-1566 (work), or 907/488-1724 (home). Re-
member the time difference.
JUL Y 21-22 - DAYTON, OHIO - Dayton Air and
Trade Show at Dayton International Airport.
Contact: Rajean Campbell, 513/898-5901.
JULY 22-24 - COFFEYVILLE, KANSAS - Funk
Aircraft Owners Reunion. Contact: Ray Pahls,
12724 E. Ashbury Circle, Apt. U-l04, Aurora,
CO 80014,303/695-4983.
JUL Y 29-AUGUST 5 - OSHKOSH, WISCONSIN
- 36th annual International EAA Convention
and Sport Aviation Exhibition at Wittman Field.
Contact: John Burton, EAA Headquarters,
Wittman Airfield, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086.
AUGUST 20 - WINTER HAVEN, FLORIDA-
Florida Sport Aviation Antique and Classic As-
sociation, EAA AlC Chapter 1 Fly-In at Gilbert
Field Municipal. Contact: Rod Spanier, 502
Jamestown Avenue, Lakeland, FL33801, 813/
665-5572.
AUGUST 26-28 - SUSSEX, NEW JERSEY -
Sussex Air Show '88. Contact: Paul G. Styger,
Airport Manager, P.O. Box 311, Sussex, New
Jersey 07461,201 /875-9919.
AUGUST 27-28 - WATKINS, COLORADO -
BalioonfestlEAA Chapter 660 Air Show. Con-
tact: 3031751-1981.
SEPTEMBER 3-4 - GEORGETOWN, CALIFOR-
NIA - Gathering of Taildraggers at
Georgetown Municipal Airport. Contact: P. O.
Box 1438, Georgetown, California, call (days)
916/677-9009, (eves) 916/333-1343.
SEPTEMBER 9-11 - DENVER, COLORADO-
Twin Beech Association 1 st Annual fly-in meet-
ing at Centennial Airport. Contact: Twin Beech
Association, P. O. Box 8186, Fountain Valley,
CA 92728-8186.
SEPTEMBER 10 - JENNINGS, LOUISIANA -
Southwest Louisiana Fly-In, Sponsored by
EAA Chatpers 529 and 541 . Trophies.
Louisiana Championship Fly-in Series Event
NO.3. Contact: Bill Anderson, 211 Bruce
Street, Lafayette, LA 70533, 318/984-9746.
SEPTEMBER 10-11 - GREELEY, COLORADO
- Rocky Mountain Regional Fly-In. Sponsored
by Colorado State EAA Chapter. Contact: 303/
798-6086 or 3031751-1981.
SEPTEMBER 16-18 - JACKSONVILLE, IL-
LINOIS - 4th Annual Byron Smith Memorial
Stinson Fly-In and Reunion at Jacksonville
Airort. Seminars, fly-outs, contests. Camping
at field. Contact: Loran Nordgren, 815/469-
9100,4 West Nebraska, Frankfort, IL 60423.
OCTOBER 1-2 - PINEVILLE, LOUISIANA - 3rd
Annual Louisiana EAA Convention, sponsored
by EAA Chapters 614 and 836. Trophies, ban-
quet, camping. Final Louisiana Championship
Series Event. Contact: Jim Alexander, 2950
Highway 28W, Boyce, LA 71409, 318/793-
4245.
OCTOBER 6-9 - CELINA, OHIO - 13th Annual
International Cessna 120/140 Association
Convention Fly-In at Lakefield Airport. Contact:
Terry Zimmerman, 419/268-2565.
OCTOBER 7-9 - THOMASVILLE, GEORGIA -
Florida Sport Aviation Antique and Classic As-
sociation, EAA AlC Chapter 1 Fly-In at
Thomasville Municipal Airport. Contact: Rod
Spanier, 502 Jamestown Avenue, Lakeland,
FL 33801,813/665-5572.
OCTOBER 7-9 - TAHLEQUAH, OKLAHOMA-
31 st Annual Tulsa Fly-In. Contact: Charlie Har-
ris, 3933 S. Peoria, Tulsa, OK 74105,9181742-
7311.
OCTOBER 7-9 - TAHLEQUAH, OKLAHOMA-
8th Annual National Bucker Fly-In. Contact:
Frank Price, Route 1, Box 419, Moody, TX
76557, 817/853-2008.
6 MAY 1988

ERON411TIC
APRIL. 1913 Serial No. 68
by Dennis Parks
Li brary/Archives Director
AERONAUTICS 1913
Editorials and Letters
One way to judge what were the
concerns in the aviation community at
a particular time is to examine the
editorials and letters to the editor.
The journal AERONAUTICS had a
very active and vocal editor in the per-
son of Ernest La Rue Jones. The
former proprietor of a hardware busi-
ness, Jones became connected with the
aero shows of 1906 and 1907 and be-
came the assistant secretary of the Aero
Club of America. In 1907 he founded
AERONAUTICS.
The following editorials and the let-
ter to the editor are from 1913 issues
of the magazine.
WAKE UP, CONGRESS
America, where the first successful
aeroplane was produced, now ranks
last among the great world powers, as
far as aviation is concerned, whether
military or civil.
While Great Britain, France, Ger-
many, Russia and Austria are spending
millions in developing military
aeronautics, building and buying
machines, training hundreds of pilots,
offering prizes and testing safety de-
vices, constructing aerodynamical
laboratories and encouraging inventors
and constructors in every possible
way, the American government is
doing practically nothing.
(NOTE: According to the 1913
Jane's the United States had 21
airplanes in hand or on order, Great
Britain over 140.)
Why are these governments spend-
ing millions of dollars on military
aeronautics? Why, then, is our govern-
ment woefully neglecting aviation?
Why have we sent no officers abroad
to study the wonderful progress of
other nations? Why have we offered
no prizes for devices giving greater
safety in aeroplanes? Why has the gov-
ernment neglected to encourage the art
in any way?
Here is our answer to these ques-
tions . It is simply this: In our govern-
ment there is entirely too much party
politics: the average Congressman is
too busy building and repairing politi-
cal fences to give much attention to the
defenses of the country ... most mem-
bers of congress never take the trouble
to read an aeronautical magazine any-
CNlRUIJro

VINTAGE AIRPLANE 7

way and could not distinguish a biplane
from the binomial theorem.
FEDERAL REGISTRATION
(February 1913)
The various states have automobile
laws providing for the registration of
the automobile, the examination of
drivers and for the punishment of reck-
less or dangerous driving.
There is no law in any State in work-
ing order for the safeguarding of the
aeronautical movement. The reckless
flying of the expert, the foolhardy
"stunts" of the novice, or the crazy
antics of the hare-brained should be
toned down by knowledge of the law' s
penalty. There is many a good reason
for the registration of machines and for
the examination of pilots. The good
flyer will gain, and so will the one who
fails to fulfill the considerations of a
proper law or set of rules.
Before we have more fool state
laws, let those who have the interests
of aviation really at heart urge the
adoption of a proper national statute.
HOW TO BUILD
AN AEROPLANE
(Letter - April 1913)
There is no reason why every girl
and boy who reads AERONAUTICS
shouldn't have an aeroplane of his or
her own, made of materials picked up
about the house. No expense is at-
tached to it-all one needs is skill and
ingenuity.
First, the frame must be made. Rip
about forty yards of picture molding
from the walls, being careful to first
remove the pictures . Then make two
oblong frames, (this machine is to be
a biplane) and over them stretch a
number of breadths of your mother's
silk dresses, neatly sewed together. If
your mother is addicted to the hobble,
you may have to resort to grandma's
wardrobe.
Now tack the silk on the frames by
means of brass-headed tacks taken
from parlor furniture. Ifyou cannot re-
move them any other way, bum the
furniture, being careful not to pick up
the tacks until they have cooled off.
When the frames are finished connect
them at the comers by means of spin-
dles taken from the front hall banisters.
The engine must have a firm founda-
tion, so let us borrow the head of one
of the brass beds and fasten it firmly
to the lower plane. As it is difficult to
construct at home an engine of 60 hp,
the best way is to take Papa's
checkbook, write a check for a
thousand dollars, carefully forging
Papa's name. This can be done easily
after a few months' practice. A
thousand dollars will buy a very nice
engine, which can be used for many
purposes about the house, such as saw-
ing wood, operating a rotary fan, the
sewing machine, etc .
The engine must be firmly bolted to
the framework of the biplane. Bolts
will be found in Papa's automobile that
will do nicely. Now you are ready to
soar aloft and the whole thing hasn't
cost you a cent. Let your first trip be
over the nearest cemetery. Then if you
drop it will not be necessary to hire a
coach and hearse. Children should al-
ways think of the economy before the
pleasure. "A dollar save is worth two
in the bush," as Plutarch once said.
- Walter Shulman.
P.S . If you are building a flying
boat, use veneer from the grand piano.
MODEL FLYING AND
ITS PURPOSES
(October 1913)
The writer has been asked a number
of times the following questions:
"What is the purpose of flying models;
is it merely a sport for boys, or is there
any knowledge to be gained that would
aid in the construction of man-carrying
or full-sized machine?" Model flying
can be considered in different ways.
Some of the model flyers indulge in it
for the purpose of whiling away their
time while others indulge in it for the
purpose of learning whatever can be
learnt.
If the new ideas of would-be inven-
tors were first tried out by means of
the flying model there would be
thousands of dollars saved yearly and
less "flying tenement houses" on the
scene .
Let the invention be embodied in a
model equipped with power, let the
model be adjusted and placed on the
ground. Ifit will rise and show good
stability and good qualities of flight, it is
then time to think of embodying the
same in a full sized machine. If this is
done much of this wanton waste of
money will be avoided .
White, David R.
Dayton, Oregon
IWEL COMENEWMEMBE RS
Gorden, Kenneth
North Palm Beach, Florida
The following is a listing of new members who have joined the EM Antique/Classic Division (through December 15, 1987).
We are honored to welcome them into the organization whose members' common interest is vintage aircraft. Succeeding ISouth,.
issues of THE VINTAGE AIRPLANE will contain additional listings of new members.
Dixon, sam
Lugoll, South Carolina
Vine, Peter
Bournemouth, England
Smith, Richard T.
Kirkland,Washington
McKibben, WIllisJ.
Lima,Ohio
Pennington, David A.
CorpusChristi ,Texas
Berry, Donald F.
Taylorville, Illinois
Hudec,John
Collinsville, Oklahoma
Palmer, HenryC.
SI. Petersburg,Florida
Steinberg, Robert
Rawlins, Wyoming
Orson,Wilbur
Broomfield, Colorado
Price,GarryS.
Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Sorensen, LloydS.
Solvang, California
8MAY 1988
Rainford, Stephen
North Chatham,New York
Reese, William
Dallas,Texas
Robbins, Michael
SulphurSprings, Texas
Shear, JamesJ.
Youngstown,New York
I-Ilgler, Donald N.
lIayton,Ohio
1upp,Sherwood
Applegate,California
Burkholder,Eugene
Myerstown, Pennsylvania
Beglm, Laval P. Eng.
Rudd,Dale
Camrose, Alberta, Canada
Bickel, Basil
St. Louis, Missouri
Fielding, Ronald Arthur
CueensCo., Nova Scotia, Canada
Brown, Rodney
Redmond, Washington
Taylor, LarryJ.
Madison,Georgia
Carnelrd, Larry D.
VallejO,California
Bailey, EverettG.
Newalla, Oklahoma
Turslch, ErnestJ.
Gatineau, Quebec, Canada Mariena, Georgia
Plews, LarryD. McDanel,Lewis
Tehachapi, California Florence, Kentucky
Brodeur, H. Wallace Goodman,Walter
Amston,Connecticut Tranquility, California
Wakefield, Michael BriereJr., LeoJ.
FI. Mitchell, Kentucky Mechanicsville, Virginia
McNeil,Walter Wayman, TIm
Norcross, Georgia Santa Rosa, California
Rezabek, JohnD.
Cedar Rapids,Iowa
Ziegler,JohnC.
Watauga,Texas
Fleming,Carl A.
FI. Wayne, Indiana
Foster, RobertW.
Indianola, Iowa
Ketron,Terry
Newton, North Carolina
Degenhardt, Ronald W.
Janesville, Wisconsin
Laskey,Chris
Ottawa,Illinois
TrolanJr.,Wallace L.
Allston,Massachusetts
Romero, MarloI.
Fieldale,Virginia
Davenport,Carol L.
MapleValley, Washington
Ploegsma, Phyllis
Enumclaw, Washington
Holmberg,Jon
Auburn, Washington
Westmlnlster, Colorado
Dorothy, Philip
Reinbeck, Iowa
Teague,DougtasE.
Taylorsville, North Carolina
Kldby, Langley R.
Aspley, Australia
Lelbbrandt, U.B.
Capetown, South Africa
Bradshaw, Bob
Wichita, Kansas
Hodge, Richard
Afton,Wisconsin
Ellis, Lee D.
IdahoFalls,Idaho
Bradford, Douglas
Costa Mesa, California
McCary,Steven W.
Mesa, Washington
Pllngston, Lee
Palos Park, Illinois
Thompson, Rod
Alstead, New Hampshire
Middleton,ForrestC.
Minerva, Ohio
Farmers Branch, Texas
Barnes, HomerM.
WinstonSalem,North Carolina
Goeken, WilliamK.
Roanoke, Texas
Miller, RobertK.
Corona, California
Stout, LloydJ.
Torrance, California
Henard, Donald C.
Memphis, Tennessee
Moses, HowardJ.
Lucerne, California
Steelhammer, Vic
Canyon Country, California
Greethurst,Dean R.
SI. Paul, Minnesota
McCarrell,Wayne
OeQueen, Arizona
Nielsen, Rick
Lorain, Ohio
Poole, RobertW.
Page,Arizona
Keller, JohnM.
Sarasota, Florida
Gendreau,Charles A.
Brooklyn Park,Minnesota
EMBER'S PROTECTS ...
byNorm Petersen
Yale BrooksAnd HisCub
The enclosed photo is of a very deter-
mined man and his immaculately re-
stored wood-spar J-3 Cub. Yale Brooks
(EAA301842, AlC 12035),9HartleyLane,
Brockton, MA 02402, had dreamed of
owning a J-3 Cub from the time he was
nine years old. When he retired from
policeworkatage61,heboughtabasket-
case Cub and totally restored it over a
period ofayear.
His next project is earning his private
pilot's license so he can enjoy flying
about in his own J-3 Cub - fulfilling a
dream hehad asachild.
Yale, wesaluteyouandyourtenacityand
grit!
JIM SOBRALSKE'S AERONCA CHAMP
ThemiddlephotoofaprettyAeronca7AC
"Champ" was sentin byownerJimSob-
ralske (EAA 301264) of 3204 Woodside
Drive, Graham, North Carolina 27252
along with some noteson the historyof
N83933, SIN7AC-2601.
DeliveredfromtheMiddletown,Ohiofac-
tory to West Bend, Wisconsin in 1946,
N83933 spent the next 20 years as a
trainer and club aircraft. In 1968, it was
totally rebuilt and sold to Jim's father,
Walter Sobralske, whobased theChamp
athissodstripcalled Broken PropField
nearBerlin, Wisconsin. That'swherethe
topphotowastaken.WaltandtheChamp
attended nearly every fly-in throughout
Wisconsin, on wheels in summer and
skisin winter.
Young Jimlearnedtoflywhenhewas16
years old and soloed N83933 on skis in
1974. Some 14 years later, he hasflown
the Champ to North Carolina where he
resides and plans on recovering the
Champ beforelong.The Grade A cotton
hasbeenontheairplanefor20yearsand
still looksnice!Jim looksforward tothe
dayhecanflyN83933backtoWisconsin
forthe EAAFly-In along with atripback
tothehomefield in Berlin!
Q
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 9
nterestingMembers
by Daniel F. Neuman
(EAA 871 , AIC 325)
1521 Berne Circle W.
Minneapolis, MN 55421
Brad Larson soloed in 1934 in thisCurtissJuniorCW-1.
10 MAY 1988
Brad Larson operated Harper Airport near Detroit, Michigan from 1937 to 1940. Aircraft pictured are from left to right, a Rearwin
Sportster,Taylorcraft,and ParamontCabinaire.
When I was asked to write an article
about an interesting EAAmember, the
choice was obvious. My long-time
friend, Brad Larson (EAA 2952, NC
484) is an outstandi ng example of a
rare breed of aviator. He pioneered the
antique/classic movement and con-
tinues to set an example for the rest of
us.
Brad was born in Michigan and now
resides in Santa Paula, California
where he owns two hangars, bases his
award-winning Ryan SCW, and re-
stores airplanes . His wife, Mary, also
helps where needed. He is now restor-
(Left to right) Mary Larson, Captain Brad Larson, SIO Dick Moreus, Fl O Bob Jondahl
on Larson's last flight for Northwest Airlines.
Brad Larson's Ryan SCW, 1987.
Brad Larson' s Cessna Airmaster restoration at Santa Paula, California, 1988.
ing two Cessna Ainnasters , powered
with Warner 165-hp radial engines.
Brad learned to fly in 1934 at De-
troit. His first solo was in a Curtiss-
Wright CW-l Junior (Pusher), pow-
ered by a three cylinder, 45-hp Szekely
engine. He has owned and flown many
types of airplanes through the years,
including: Curtiss Jr. , Davis D-l ,
Aeronca C-3 , Rearwin Sportster,
Taylorcraft on floats, Howard DGA-15
(fonner Shell Oil Corp. plane) , Ryan
SCW, Cessna Airmaster, Funk,
Beechcraft Bonanza and more.
In the 1930s Brad operated Harper
Airport in Detroit, near my home. He
also worked as a mechanic prior to
World War II for Pennsylvania Central
Airlines (later absorbed by United Air-
lines). In 1942 he joined Northwest
Airlines and flew as a captain on its
Al aska Air Transport Command mili-
tary routes for the duration of the war .
Until his retirement in 1975, Brad
flew all the routes and equipment on
NWA both as a captain and an FAA-
designated check/training pilot. He
holds both FAA mechanic and ATP
certificates, with a long list of type rat-
ings in a variety of piston-engine-pow-
ered turboprop and turbo-jet airplanes,
including the Boeing 747. He was one
of the first captains to qualify in the
B-747s and he had a prominent role in
setting up NWA's pilot training pro-
gram on this as well as other types of
aircraft.
Brad' s aviation career, from the be-
ginning, includes an intense interest in
homebuilt and light airplanes. He built
and flew experimental and homebuilts
starting in the 1930s when the FAA
(then called CAA) officially banned
these activities. His interest and dedi-
cation to antique/classic airplanes is as
strong as ever. He continues to partici-
pate in many aviation activities and fly-
ins, including the EAA Annual Con-
vention.
Over the years Brad has flown most
types of aircraft. He has received many
awards and trophies, nevertheless, he
is reluctant to boast or capitalize on his
accomplishments.
Brad and his wife, Mary, have two
grown sons , Glenn and Paul, both cap-
tains for Northwest Airlines . Both of
them, like their father , enjoy flying and
working on older airplanes and are
continuing the family aviation tradi-
tion .
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 11
ROSE'SRYANS
Early morning sunglistens on the classic linesofthe Ryan STM, NC17343, as ittaxies pastat Oshkosh '86. Thisisthemodel that
wasexportedtomanycountriesinthelate1930'sandearly1940s.
by Norm Petersen
Most pilots will take a longer-than-
normal look at the front cover photo-
graph of this month's Vintage. For
some reason, the sight of three low-
wing Ryans in formation quickens the
pulse and starts the adrenaline flowing .
The architect of this photo is none
other than the "old master" himself,
Ted Koston (EAA 44514, A /C 131) of
Oak Park, Illinois. (I always felt that
Greece gave us Aristotle, Socrates,
Plato and Ted Koston!)
All three Ryans are owned by the
same person, William R. (Bill) Rose
(EAA 159635, A/C 6612) of 15 West
Mundhank Road, South Barrington, Il-
linois 60010. You may ask, why would
anyone want the job of keeping three
Ryans in the air with all the associated
maintenance, etc.? Well, let me tell
BillRose,completewithAntique/ClassichatonbackwardstaxistheRyanSTA"Special "
totheassemblyareaforthe'87OshkoshParadeofFlight.EventhebackgroundBeech
Staggerwingadds classtothisphoto!
12 MAY 1988
you, Bill Rose is not your everyday,
household antiquer who goes from one
airplane to another. He is one of those
rare individuals who jumps into some-
thing he really likes with both feet and
a total commitment! And so fare, you
are only aware of half the story!
The beautiful red Ryan in the fore-
ground is a 1937 STA "Special,"
NC17368 , SI N 173, with Bill Rose at
the controls. This particular airplane
was acquired from the Dacy family of
Harvard, Illinois (whose name is
synonymous with aviation). Bill and
his mechanic took the Ryan down to
bare bones and slowly rebuilt the entire
airplane from the ground up. The four-
cylinder inverted Menasco C4S of 150
hp was subjected to a major overhaul
before being mated with the airplane.
The result was a rather stunning
airplane with its brilliant red paint
scheme and white trim. Note how the
optional front cockpit cover makes an
already sharp airplane look even bet-
ter.
The second airplane on the cover
(formation center) is a Ryan STM, NC
17343, SI N 458, that was acquired
from Don Sharp in California. This air-
craft was flown for about two years by
Bill Rose before it was totally disman-
tled and rebuilt, including the Menasco
engine. This is the military version of
the STA "Special" that is distinguished
by the external longerons on the out-
side of the cockpit and the turnover
pylon in the front windscreen. The
pilot in the rear cockpit is Ron Weaver
(EAA 232199), who helps Bill Rose
with the flying chores (tough duty),
and his passenger is the younger half
of the Plum father and son team that
used to own one of Bill Rose's Ryans.
Note how the tastefully done paint
scheme accentuates the classic lines of
the Ryan - put there by T. Claude
Ryan himself!
The well-polished Ryan farthest
from the camera is a 1941 ST3KR,
N54403, SIN 1387, flown by Joe
McClaney. The "Stars and Bars" paint
scheme is typical of the U.S. Army
Air Corps trainers of World War II.
Note the open, non-faired landing gear
and the five-cylinder Kinner radial en-
gine of 160 hp. The short exhaust
stacks on this model Ryan gave a
unique sound that earned the airplane
the nickname of "Maytag Messer-
schmitt." A further identification dif-
ference of the ST3KR is the four-de-
gree sweepback of the wings versus the
straight wings of the STA and STM.
Bill Rose acquired the ST3KR from
a museum in California and proceeded
to rebuild the wings and Kinner engine
before it could be flown. The detailed
paint scheme and polished fuselage
With its 160-hp Kinner engine popping along at idle, the Ryan ST3KR, N54403, taxies
to its parking spot at Oshkosh '87. The large 387 "buzz" number comes from the last
three numbers of the serial number, 1387. Note turnover pylon just ahead of front
windshield.
make for a very pretty example of this
model Ryan, which is the most popul-
ous - the FAA register has 167
ST3KRs and II PT-22s (military de-
signation) active.
And to bring you up to date as to
how much involvement this gentle-
man, Bill Rose, has with the Ryan
marque, let me whet your appetite! Be-
sides these three beautiful Ryan's on
the cover, he has three more Ryans
under total rebuild! They are
NCI7346, SIN 149; NC17351, SIN
153; and NCI7364, SIN 177! These
two STA "Specials" and STM aircraft
will be brought back to full flying
status to join the "Rose Air Force."
Perhaps one day we will be able to see
all six of Bill's Ryans in formation at
Oshkosh - a sight that will make the
tongues wag for a long time!
We can hardly wait..
Thataway! Beautifully porportioned nosecowl of the STA "SpeCial" houses a 150-hp Menasco C4S inverted four-cylinder engine which
employs a 9.6 to 1 supercharger. Note oil cooler below cowl.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 13
Through the generosity of the Snap-
on Tools Corporation, a new feature will
soon begin appearing in SPORT AVIA-
TION and, when the subject matter is
appropriate, also in The VINTAGE
AIRPLANE. Hints For Homebuilders
will consist of aircraft building and
maintenance tips submitted by EAA
members ... handy ways of handling
big or small problems encountered dur-
ing the building process and in mainte-
nance after the bird is flying. Authors of
the hints selected for publication will be
rewarded for their ingenuity . .. receiving
a coveted Snap-on drive socket wrench
set with a retail value of $226.65. At the
end of each Hints For Homebuilders
year, which will run from August to July
to coincide with the annual Oshkosh
Convention, a grand prize winner will be
selected from the previous year's month-
ly winners . . . and, in appropriate Osh-
kosh ceremonies, will be presented with
Snap-on Tool's Combination Top Chest
and Roll Cab (with special aircraft pan-
els), which has a retail value of $2, 164!
Hints For Homebuilders entries are
now being accepted, the first of which
to be selected will appear in August to
start off the 1988/89 year. There is no
limit on the number of entries, however,
an individual will be limited to two
monthly prizes during an August to July
Hints For Homebuilders year. Entries
must include a description of the build-
ing or maintenance tip adequate for
others to follow and duplicate the proce-
dure, and can be accompanied by
photos and drawings. The description
should be held to about one typed page.
Address entries to Hints For Home-
builders, Att. Golda Cox EM, Wittman
Airfield Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086.
The n a p ~ o n Tools Corporation of
Kenosha, WI is known worldwide for its
line of patented tools of the highest
quality. The firm has been a generous
supporter of the EM Foundation and
its Air of Adventure Museum since its
inception. It is the sponsor of the
museum's Homebuilder's Corner and
supplied the museum restoration shop
with all its hand tools - notice the famil-
iar red cabinets when you next visit the
museum. Homebuilders and restorers
treasure fine tools . . . so there could be
no more appropriate sponsor for Hints
For Homebuilders than Snap-on Tools
and no more appropriate prizes than
the Snap-on wrench sets. The grand
prize of the Combination Top Chest and
Roll Cab is something every builder
dreams of owning ... and filling with
Snap-on Tools.
14 MAY 1988
1
Above - The annual Hints For Homebuild-
ers grand prize will be this Snap-on Tools
KR657 Roll Cab and KR637 Top Chest ...
with special aircraft panels created spe-
cifically for the EAA winners. This rugged
and roomy combo provides 16,804 cubic
inches of tool storage. The 637 has ten
drawers, and the four larger full width
drawers roll on ball bearing runners. The
five small side drawers and the top
drawer glide on one-piece friction run-
ners. All the drawers on the 657 feature
ball bearing slides. Heavy duty sheet
metal and attractive finishes make these
professional-quality units durable and
good looking.
Left - These Snap-on wrench sets will be
the monthly prizes for entries selected
for Hints For Homebuilders. The 3/8"
Drive Socket Wrench Set, lower right in
photo, is the primary monthly prize, with
the 1/4" Drive Socket Set at the left and
the 9 piece Long Handle Combination
Wrench Set as alternate prizes for previ-
ous winners or for persons who might
already own the Snap-on 3/8" Drive
Socket set..
SUN IN FUN
nonNTS
1988
c.
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Above: A.C. Hutson with his sanitary
1939 Taylorcraft in tow. Isn't that a great
set of first initials for an antique/classic
enthusiast?
Left: When Hank Palmer builds a flying
&. boat he builds a real flying boat! Power
-l: comes from a 65-hp Continental and yes,
'" it really does fly.
::;;
Right: FAA Administrator Allan McArtor
wa"s on hand to speak to pilots on a vari-
ety of issues centering primarily on
NPRM 88-2. We hope he was also there
to listen, as several pilots asked some
pointed questions and voiced strong
opinions.
!1
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VINTAGE AIRPLANE 15
'The 'Ifiomas-%orse companygaveus the 'Tommy Scout"
and the citizens of Ithaca, yorf(chipped in a few
s{eep{ess nights.
by 9{jno Lama
('EM287982)
28:ForestJlcre'Drive
Itfiaca,g.,(jwYort(
16 MAY 1988
What began as a local European con-
flict between Austria-Hungary and
Serbia on July 28, 1914 started a cas-
cade of "dominoes" that led to World
War I. Germany declared war against
Russia on August, I, 1914 and the con-
flict continued until 1918. In that short
time, the war escalated to world-wide
proportions involving 32 countries.
A few years ago, I was surpri sed to
learn of my hometown's involvement
in the "War to end all Wars." Of
course, the United States was part of
this conflict allied with Great Britain,
France, Russia and Italy. We often
hear stories told by our grandparents
and great-grandparents of the war. My
great uncle Fred told me of the long
nights when he was little that he
couldn't get any sleep because of "all
the racket up at the Morse Plant on
South Hill." The sounds that kept my
uncle awake were from the roaring en-
gines of the Thomas-Morse Scouts
being run for 24 hours straight. They
were being tested before the little
single-seat planes were sent into active
duty in Europe. The little biplane was
called the "Tommy Scout. " It was
known by brave World War I pilots as
a "forgiving" airplane that neverthless
had the flying characteristics of a real
fighter.
The S-4C was built by Thomas-
Morse Aircraft Corporation of Ithaca,
New York. At the time, Ithaca was a
sleepy little town nestled among three
hills ; East , West and South with the
deep blue Lake Cayuga stretching 45
miles to the north. In addition to the
Thomas-Morse Corporation, its other
claim to fame was Cornell University
on East Hill.
TOP:
The Model 5-4 "Longtail" Thomas-Morse
Scout powered by a Le Rhone rotary en-
gine of 110hp. TheLe Rhone usedthree
gallonsofoil per hour. 1917priceofthe
S-4was $13,200.
MIDDLE:
Oneofthe24-hourrunupsthatkeptUncle
Fred awake nights.
LEFT:
Left to right: Lt. Macllvain (USMC pilot),
U.S. Inspector Cresswell , and the
Thomas-Morse factory crew: H.N. Bliss,
William T. Thomas, president, Murphy,
Walter Brock, Roz Ware, George Abel,
and Rupert Clark, company funny man.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 17
scocurr:s
:J{og{o1(
Thomas liquid-cooled V-8 Model 890 en-
gine of 250 hp.
Assembly line for the Model 890 engine
in Ithaca. At its peak the factory employed
1,200 people.
Morse Chain
Company, still in
Ithaca today, backed
the Thomas brothers.
18 MAY 1988
Test pilot Frank Burnside (left) and Wil-
liam Holmes with a Scout equipped with
.30 caliber machine guns and 1,500
rounds of ammunition.
The Thomas-Morse Corporation
was not native to Ithaca. In fact, the
Company had its beginning in nearby
Hammondsport, New York in 1910.
There , the company was known as the
Thomas Brothers Airplane Company.
Years before, a young William T .
Thomas graduated as a mechanical en-
gineer from the Central Technical Col-
lege of London , England. He came to
America and began working for Glenn
Curtiss at Hammondsport. Soon after ,
he was joined by his brother Oliver.
By 1910, the two completed construc-
tion of a pusher biplane. That year they
formed their own company. In the next
few years , the brothers continued to
build new types of aircraft including
metal-hull seaplanes and monoplanes .
In 1914, the Ithaca Board of Trade,
the equivalent of the Chamber of Com-
merce, invited the brothers to move
their operation to Ithaca. They moved.
In the meantime, war had engulfed the
world. Morse Chain Company, still in
Ithaca today and now a division of
Borg-Warner, backed the Thomas
brothers and allowed them to expand
construction. Their primary product
was the "Tommy Scout." With the war
at hand, the aviation division of the
Signal Corps needed a trainer for pur-
suit pilots. The United States had no
real air force at thi s time and therefore
had a huge appetite for new planes.
The first Tommy Scout S-4 flew in
June 1917. It had a rotary engine that
was rare in the US - the lOO-hp
French Gnome. The speed of the plane
was 95 mph.
On October 3, 1917, the govern-
ment ordered 100 S-4Bs. (The B model
was the Tommy Scout with 18 im-
provements made after military testing
in Virginia.) The B model was sturdy .
Even with aerobatic applications, no
in-flight airframe failures were ever re-
corded. The Gnome engine, however,
was troublesome. It was hard to start
and caused several fires . The TBO was
only 60 hours! Oil consumption was
over three gallons per hour. When it
was cold outside , the control cables
would contract and made control of the
plane difficult. The ailerons were not-
ably heavy. Despite these shortcom-
ings, the plane performed well with
short take-off runs and a rate of climb
of 700 fpm. Its service ceiling was
16,000 feet. On January 9th, 1918 the
US War Department ordered 400 of the
Tommy Scout model S-4Cs. The C
model was an improved version of the
B model, incorporating a machine gun
and the reliable but smaller Le Rhone
rotary, 80-hp engine.
The S-4C had an upper wing span
of 26 feet, six inches and lower
wingspan at 25 feet, six inches . The
Inscription reads, "Lilian beside famous
Thomas-Morse Scout plane." '''Tex' took
me for a ride in this plane. My first plane
ride." Tex Marshall was a Thomas-Morse
test pilot.
Not surprisingly,
there were a
lot of bouncing
landings.
The Wharton movie connection of Ithaca,
New York. Left to right: Leo Wharton,
Frank Burnside, Tex Marshall and Theo-
dore Wharton. Scouts were disguised as
a number of other World War I fighters.
upper wing chord was five feet , six
inches and the lower was four feet,
three inches. The wing area was 234
sq. ft. with 25 sq. ft. used for ailerons.
The wings were staggered between 29
and 32 inches depending on the engine
used . Planes were equipped with
cameras, .30 caliber Marlin machine
guns , radio gear and smoke screen
equipment in various combinations.
Landing the plane was tough. The en-
gine couldn't be throttled back, but had
to be turned on and off during landing
procedures . There was a "blip" switch
on the stick for this purpose. Not sur-
prisingly, there were a lot of bouncing
landings.
The Tommies made it big in the
movies . Hollywood painted them to
look German , British and French.
They even cut the tail feathers to make
them look like Sopwith Camels. The
Tommy was the star of HELL'S
ANGELS, THE SKY RAIDERS, and as
late as 1956, LAFAYETTE ESCAD-
RILLE. I'm sorry to say that there isn't
a single Tommy Scout here in Ithaca,
although I suspect that if I looked in
every single bam in the county, I just
might find one.
I thank Mr. Neil Poppensiek of the
DeWitt Historical Society for the mate-
rials he provided for this article .
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 19
An Upside- UMOaErcoupe
by Mary Jones
It was a photograph that would bring
tears to your eyes!
Hanging over the hub of the Er-
coupe's propeller was a page from a
photo album showing the same
airplane resting upside down, canopy-
to-canopy, on top of a parked
Cherokee 180. But, obviously the
story had a happy ending because here
was that very same Ercoupe, sitting
pretty among other classic aircraft on
the field at Sun 'n Fun '87.
This was a story I wanted to learn
more about , so I made it a point to pass
by this particular aircraft regularly,
hoping to talk with the owner. Early
one morning I caught Frank Glynn
(EAA 224002, AIC 10533), 1601
Edgerton Place, Crofton, Maryland
21114, wiping the dew off his favorite
machine.
The story of the upside down
airplane unfolded . On June 9, 1984,
Frank had flown from his home base,
Freeway Airport in Bowie, Maryland ,
to Williamsburg , Virginia to attend a
fly-in . Normally Frank stayed over-
night when he attended this particular
fly-in, but forecasts were predicting
nasty weather the next day, so he flew
back home and tied N2844 down at
Freeway.
Frank remembers that it was about
6 p.m. when the phone rang. Answer-
ing it, he heard a voice on the other
end of the line say, "Frank, you'd bet-
ter come take a look at your airplane.
We had a wind storm come through
here, clocked at 110 knots, and your
airplane and Bob Jenkins' were de-
stroyed." Frank says he replied,
"Who's calling me, who's kidding
me?" The voice returned, "It's no joke,
Frank."
Needless to say , Frank and his wife
were on their way to the airport im-
mediately. Driving the eight miles to
the airport seemed to take an eternity
and as they got closer, they noticed
more and more wind damage, includ-
ing a tree across the road which forced
a detour. When they arrived at the air-
This is the sightthat greeted Frank Glynn when he arrived at theairport.
Q)
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....
:::;
Frank Glynn and his favorite little
airplane.
port and took a look at the airplane -
well, you know that sick feeling you
get in the pit of your stomach! Frank
said he looked at his wife and there
were tears streaming down her face,
"Frank," she said, "you're either going
to have to fix it or buy another one."
"She's a pretty understanding
woman," said Frank, "considering I
didn't have insurance to fix it."
After assessing the situation it was
determined that a microburst upended
just two airplanes out of the 100 nor-
mally parked on the field. That, of
course, didn't ease Frank's sadness
any, but crying wouldn't help. It was
time to make a decision - pick up the
pieces and go on, or else. For Frank it
wasn't really a hard decision, "I loved
my little Ercoupe, a 1946 415D. I'd
had it for seven years and it had been
on this same field for 12 years before
that. I didn ' t want to give it up unless
I had to." He called his friend , Nelson
Meyers, who had been the mechanic
on this Ercoupe for over 20 years.
"Nelson came over, took a good
look at it and said, 'We can save this
airplane. How much money have you
got?' I said, 'Nelson, that's an awful
thing to say.' He said, 'Well, look,
why waste your time and mine until I
know what you can spend on it. ", After
some discussion Frank and Nelson ag-
reed on a figure that Frank felt he could
live with and one Nelson felt would
get the aircraft back in flying condi-
tion. Nelson said , "That's reasonable,
we can do it for that price, if you do a
lot of the work . I'll supervise you and
those things you can't do for legal
reasons , I'll do. "
The damage assessment included the
spar on the left wing, some damage to
one rudder, some buckling on the left
side and on the top right at the bulk-
head, a crushed canopy and crushed
top gas tank. By some stroke of sheer
20 MAY 1988
Damage to the cockpit area is evident in
this photo.
luck, the propellers of the two
airplanes did not hit each other, and
there was no damage to either engine.
Of course, there was significant dam-
age to the Ercoupe's instrument panel
and interior, which eventually required
replacement.
The first order of business was to
get the plane right side up. The wings
were removed and, with the aid of
some farm equipment, the airplane was
lifted off the Cherokee and set atop
tires on a flatbed truck for transport to
Nelson Meyer's spare hangar at Hyde
Field. Frank remembers, "We grabbed
the airplane by the wing attach clevis
and lifted it up and never let it touch
the ground except on the wheels again.
That saved a lot of damage."
The first project tackled was the
damaged left wing. As Frank and Nel-
son examined the wing they noticed
the bridge structure was slightly bent,
which was putting the spar in tension .
Once the truss bridge structure was
straightened out, the spar straightened
itself out.
Repair of the aircraft went slowly,
as Frank could only work part-time on
the "restoration." Little by little, over
the next 25 months, the crinkles were
worked out of N2844 .
After the men put the airplane back
together, minus the wings, it was given
a coating of zinc chromate preservative
before the basic color, a tasty French
Vanilla, was sprayed on. A year later,
when everything was finished and the
wings were back on, all the trim paint
was added - "that made it easier for
Since completion of the restoration of the Ercoupe after the "big wind," Frank has
replaced the original 85-hp Continental with a 100-hp Continental. Performance has
increased to a 1000 fpm minute climb with lift-off in about 350-400 ft. (on a cold day
with the tanks full).
Frank stripped all the metal off the wings and recovered them with fabric per original
specs.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 21
An
Upside- UMOa
Ercoupe
us to line up all the trim ." The trim and
upper part of the fuselage consisted of
an automotive polyurethane paint that
has characteristics similar to Irnron -
"It' s supposed to stretch and maintain
that shiny wet look. The actual color
is called Bittersweet, a 1983 Ford
color."
When it came time to recover the
wings , Nelson and Frank decided to
pull off all the heavy metal (.030) skins Ready forthe accent color!
and redo them with fabric, just as the
airplane was originally built. They also
pulled out a lot of old insulation used
with the metal covering. That saved
quite a bit of weight and resulted in
significant increases in performance
when the plane was flying again -
750 fpm solo climb rate compared to
350 fpm with the metal-covered wings.
An electric trim also helps to "take out
the heavy wing, and helps you fly a
more stable and straighter course,"
adds Frank.
About this time, Frank retired (for
the second time - he originally retired
from the NASA Space Flight Center in
1975) and devoted full time to the re-
Glynnjustcutan overlayoftheoldpaneltogetaround sometroublesomeflangesthat
were complicating theaddition ofsome new instrumentation. And this is howit looks
with all the goodiesstuffed in.
a
storation of the Ercoupe. He set a goal
of having the airplane ready to fly to
Oshkosh '86 and the National Ercoupe
fly-in scheduled for mid-July at Tele-
mark, Wisconsin.
It was also about this time that Frank
decided it was time for a new radio and
an ARNAV 21 loran - an ideal piece
of machinery for VFR cross country
flying, he adds. That posed a few prob-
lems, "I hadn't intended to redo the
instrument panel, but when I tried to
put in the extra instruments I found I
was stymied by some flanges so we
just cut an overlay. What is in there
now is an overlay of the old panel with
a lot of the old panel cut away to accept
all the instruments I've added." After
the final touches were added to a com-
pletely new Airtex interior, the aircraft
was ready for test flying again.
"I test flew the airplane on July 9th
22 MAY 1988
The happy Ending!
The paint scheme on N2844H is tastefully done in Bittersweet and French Vanilla.
'"
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and about two weeks later left for Tele-
mark and Oshkosh. Between July '86
and now (March, 1987), I've put over
100 flight hours on this airplane, and
not very many of them over the
winter." That's a pretty good number
of hours for a man who earned his
pilot's license 13 years ago at the age
of 58.
Frank says his wife has been en-
couraging about his flying, "Although
she doesn't fly with me, she is very
happy that I'm interested in a hobby at
my age. She says it keeps me young.
When I flew to Oshkosh '86, she said,
' Have fun, call me every three days
and eat right. '" "She was so consider-
ate during the time I was rebuilding
the aircraft, I have to give her a tre-
mendous amount of credit for bearing
with me during that period. She defer-
red all my housework and 'honey-do'
projects until after the airplane was
finished."
And now that it's all fixed up again,
Frank Glynn and his little airplane "go
just about anywhere we like to go ..."
And that is definitely a happy ending
to a story that started out mighty sad .
On the line at Sun 'n Fun '87, and you'll see this airplane at a number of other fly-ins
as well. Frank's next goal is to fly the airplane to a West Coast fly-in.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 23
William Besler and the steam-powered Trav.el Air.
BIPLANE
BOILERMAKER
Steampower takes to a Travel Air
by Mark Phelps
When his car stalled with a weak steam engine. The constant pressure of to power hi s 8,OOO-pound, 104-foot
battery one winter morning, a young a steam engine pushes the piston up span airplane but the craft was de-
man called his cousin to get a jump- and down smoothly, (the type of push stroyed by a wind storm before it could
start. His cousin wasn't too quick on that the Pinto driver was expecting) be tested. Most notable were the exper-
the uptake so the young man explained while internal combustion assaults the iments of Dr. Samuel Langley , foun-
very carefully that he needed to be piston with the subtlety of a fiery der of the Smithsonian Institution and
pushed at about 30 mph or so in order sledge hammer. almost the first to build a flying
to pop the clutch and get the engine Steam engines are well known on airplane. Five of his miniature models
going. Cousin nodded and quickly trains and industrial equipment. Most used steam engines and in May , 1896
fired up his pickUp . The driver got in people have also heard of the Stanley one of them made a flight of 3,000 feet
his Pinto. turned on the key, put the Steamer automobile but few are aware over Washington's Potomac River. His
transmission into second and looked in of the role steam has played in aero- manned airplane, the steam-powered
the rearview mirror just in time to see nautical hi story. It was 1810, 97 years Aerodrome, failed to fly due to an in-
his cousin approaching his rear before the Wrights flew, that Sir adequate launching system but most
bumper-at "about 30 mph or so." George Cayley experimented with historians agree that it was that humili-
The resulting collision is compara- steam powered gliders but found them ation that caused him to discontinue
ble to what happens in an internal com- too heavy to be practical. Sir Hiram his work rather than the fact that t ~
bustion piston engine as opposed to a Maxim built a 360-hp steam engine machine was incapable of flight.
24 MAY 1988
The Travel Air was carefully weighed to ensure that the heavier steam engine installation did not adversely effect handling.
After the Wrights succeeded with an
internal combustion engine, most
aeronauts followed their lead, believ-
ing the gas engine to be the only type
capable of the efficiency required to
power an airplane. In 1933 however,
two brothers in Oakland, California
turned back the clock. George and
William Besler flew a conventional
Travel Air 4000 airframe converted to
steam power. The story made head-
lines in local papers and curiosity items
in aviation publications. As usual, the
new/old technology was touted as the
greatest rediscovery since the wing and
represented the wave of the future .
Also as usual, they were wrong-the
Besler brothers discontinued their ex-
periments and the steam Travel Air
was lost to history, but not before leav-
ing behind a curious footnote in pow-
erplant development.
It's worth reexamining the Besler
steam airplane in light of modem de-
velopment and see how it sizes up.
Who knows, with the ingenuity of
today's engineering and people who
are deaf to the ridicule heaped on yes-
terday's failures, you might just see a
steam powered airplane at Oshkosh
some day. From the sound of the press
reports from 1933, maybe it wasn't
such a bad idea after all.
The engine that the Beslers used was
an unmodified, small locomotive pow-
erplant-the kind used to drive railroad
cars around switching yards. The total
I
Detail of the steam engine installation showing the boiler, burner and associated plumb-
ing and fittings.
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 25
BEStER
sYSTEMS
Increased frontal area of the condensation radiator under the cowling is apparent in
this picture.
engine installation including boiler,
water and associated plumbing
weighed 500 pounds and produced 150
hp. The OX-5 that it replaced tipped
the scales at about 475 pounds for 90
hp., a favorable comparison. While the
OX-5 was never considered a champ
in the hp-to-weight category, re-
member that the Beslers' steam engine
was built to rail specs, much heavier
than a dedicated aircraft steam engine
could have been.
Besides weight, there were other ap-
parent drawbacks to a steam engine.
The high pressure (1,200 psi at 800
degrees F.) would require sturdy hoses
and fittings; excessive frontal area was
required for the condensing radiators;
water loss could be expected during
condensation; and start-up would be
slow, taking time for the boiler to build
up pressure.
But for every objection there was a
favorable answer. A weight trimming
program to aeronautical specs could
easily have reduced the mass of the
steam engine by as much as half; suit-
able lightweight fittings held in the
steam pressure for the Beslers; the
boiler they designed was about 95 per-
cent efficient, allowing a total onboard
water supply of 10 gallons to suffice;
frontal area could be reduced by plac-
ing the condensers in the wing leading
edges, much like the radiators on the
current Reno unlimited racer, Stiletto,
and the simple start-up sequence took
only 45 seconds to bring the boiler up
to pressure - all this with 1933
technology!
What are the advantages of steam in
an airplane? There were enough to
make the 1933 aviation writers bubble
over with enthusiasm. The steam en-
gine was stone-age simplicity com-
pared with its gas burning counterpart.
Fuel oil was cheaper than gasoline and
consumption was about 10 gph at 150
hp (sound familiar?). Altitude had no
effect on engine performance as it did
on internal combustion engines that re-
lied on the density of the ambient air
for manifold pressure (the external
combustion engine maintained its man-
ifold pressure on its own). Cabin heat
required only a duct open to the con-
denser section. The steam engine's
fewer parts needed less maintenance
and the work was much easier to per-
form, somewhat like a modem turbine
engine but without the exorbitant ini-
tial cost. In addition the engine was
reversible for shorter landings or even
in flight to achieve phenomonal sink
rates with no adverse effects on hand-
ling.
The most important benefit, how-
ever, was the engine's smooth opera-
tion. Not only were vibrations
minimized allowing greater propeller
efficiency, comfort, acceleration and
simpler mounting hardware but the
steam engine was much quieter. Sev-
eral articles written in 1933 mention
that the loudest sound heard as the
steam Travel Air flew overhead was
the wind in the wires and the beating
of the propeller. The pilot could be
heard easily as he shouted to observers
on the ground.
Before the Beslers made their first
flight behind the steam engine they had
run the powerplant for 30 hours on a
dynamo and for 20 hours of static test-
ing on the airframe. The weight and
balance calculations were done by the
Boeing School of Aeronautics. And
the brothers followed the time-honored
maxim of experimental aircraft build-
ing - don't put an untried powerplant
on an untried airframe. The Travel Air
was a docile, proven testbed that
served its function well.
For whatever reasons, the Beslers
declined to continue their experiments .
One theory was that the steam airplane
was a publicity gimmick designed to
help sell steam engines for other applica-
tions and was never meant to go any
further than a series of test flights. Is
it possible that modem materials could
make an even bigger success of steam
power than the press reports from 1933
indicated? The quest for quieter,
smoother powerplants has taken some
interesting turns in the past. Maybe
steam power has its place in the fu-
ture. e
26 MAY 1988
"'tAHE
Here's another biplane from the
Golden Age. Evidently intended as a
trainer with tandem seating, the design
like many others faded from the scene
and is now all but forgotten. The
photo, date and location unknown, was
submitted by George Goodhead of
Tulsa, Oklahoma. George would like
to know more about the airplane and
its designer. Answers will be published
in the August , 1988 issue of THE VIN-
TAGE AIRPLANE. Deadline for that
issue is June 10, 1988.
Well-known Boeing authority Peter
M. Bowers of Seattle, Washington had
the answer to the Mystery Plane in the
February issue. He writes:
"Readers knowledgeable about pro-
duction US Navy airplanes might iden-
tify the February Mystery Plane as a
Boeing NB-2. Close, but no cigar. The
plane is a Boeing all right , but it is the
one-off NB-3. This was the next-to-
by George A. Hardie, Jr.
last NB-I airframe modified to correct
an inherent spin problem by lengthen-
ing the rear fuselage and extending the
nose . The engine was the same 180-hp
Wright E-5 (American-built Hispano-
Suiza) used in the 30 production NB-
2s . The 41 NB-Is used the new 200-hp
Wright J-2 air-cooled radials . Use of
the Wright E-4 in the NB-2 was at the
Navy's request to use up its supply of
the war-surplus engine.
"The photo was taken on July 3,
1925 at Sand Point Naval Air Station
north of Seattle. Since the city didn't
have a proper airport at the time, Boe-
ing trucked new models there for test.
There were no fly-away deliveries in
those days; production aircraft were
crated and shipped from the factory by
rail ."
Additional information is given in
Pete' s book, Boeing Aircraft Since
1916. page 107.
Answers were also from
Douglas T. Rounds, Zebulon . Geor-
gia; Herbert G. deBruyn. Bellevue,
Washington; Robert Wynne, Mercer
Island, Washington; E. R. Trice, Bed-
ford, Texas; Charley Hayes, Park
Forest , Illinois; Randy Barnes, Peoria,
Illinois; Roy G. Cagle, Juneau,
Alaska; Tom Henebry, Camarillo,
California and Robert C. Mosher,
Royal Oak, Michigan .
VINTAGE AIRPLANE 27


It'sExciting!
It'sforEveryone!
See this priceless collection of
rare, historically significant air-
craft,all imaginativelydisplayed
intheworld'slargest.mostmod-
emsportaviationmuseum.Enjoy
the many educational displays
and audio-visual presentations.
Stopby - here'ssomethingthe
entire family will enjoy. Just
minutesaway!
HOURS
8:30to5:00 p.rn.
MondaythruSaturday
11 :00a.m. to5:00p.m.
Sundays
Closed Easter. Thanksgiving, Christmas
and NewYears Day (Guided grouptour
arrangementsmustbemadetwoweeks
in advance).
CONVENIENTLOCATION
The EMAviation Center is located on
WittmanField,Oshkosh.Wis. - justoff
Highway41. Going North ExitHwy. 26
or 44. Going South Exit Hwy. 44 and
followsigns.Forfly-ins - free bus from
Basler FlightService.

FOUNDATION
WittmanAirfield
Oshkosh, WI 54903-3065
414-426-4800
AIRCRAFT:
1936 J-2Taylor(Piper)- Excellentcondition.65
hp Continental. Also Piper J-5 basket case com-
pletelessengineandadditionalsetJ-5paperwork.
BobSchroeder,days414/739-0137,evenings414/
766-5993. (5-2)
Collectors- Antique/Classic1940StinsonModel
10,TIAF2202.05, TSOH 1327.55. Fabric Aviatex
Endura. Estatesale. Verygoodcondition.$12,000,
Canadian OBO. Slim Sherk604/392-2185. (6-2)
Collectors Dream - 1941 DH82A British Tiger
Moth. Rareandexceptionalcondition.Forinforma-
tion, call George Leacock, 613/392-8422 or write
to 111 Prospect Hill, Trenton, Ontario, Canada
K8V 2V5.
PLANS:
POBERPIXIE- VWpoweredparasol- unlimited
in low-cost pleasure flying. Big, roomy cockpit for
the over six foot pilot. VW power insures hard to
beat 3';'gph at cruise setting. 15 large instruction
sheets. Plans- $60.00.InfoPack- $5.00. Send
check or money order to: ACRO SPORT, INC.,
Box462, HalesCorners,WI53130.414/529-2609.
ACRO SPORT- Single placebiplane capableof
unlimi ted aerobatics. 23 sheets of clear, easy to
follow plans includes nearly 100isometrical draw-
ings, photos and exploded views. Complete parts
and materials list. Full size wing drawings. Plans
plus 139 page Builder's Manual - $60.00. Info
Pack- $5.00. SuperAcro SportWing Drawing-
$15.00. The Technique of Aircraft Building -
$10.00 plus $2.00 postage. Send check ormoney
order to: ACRO SPORT, INC., Box 462, Hales
Corners, WI 53130.414/529-2609.
ENGINES &ACCESSORIES:
NEW W-670 Continental 220 hp Cylinders.
Brand new aircraft cylinders. Never been on an
engine. These are not tank engine cylinders.
VINTAGE TRADER AD fORM
Send check or money order wilh copy 10 Vinlage Trader EAA,Willman Airfield, Oshkosh.WI 549033086.
TolalWords-----.Numberof Issues 10 Run ____ __________________
TOlal$_ ___ Signalure _____________________________
Address __________________________________ ___
MISCELLANEOUS:
HaveWeGot A PartforYou!20yearsaccumula-
tion of parts for all types of aircraft - antiques,
classics,homebuilts,warbirds. Everythingfromthe
spinner tothe tail wheel. Air SalvageofArkansas,
Rt. 1, Box8020, Mena, AR 71953,phone501 /394-
1022 or501/394-2342. (3-2/579111)
CUSTOM EMBROIDERED PATCHES. Made to
suit your design, any size, shape, colors. Five
patch minimum. Free random sample and
brochure. Hein Specialties, 4202P North Drake,
Chicago, IL 60618-1113. (c-2/89)
Very large collection of CUSTOM-BOUND AN-
TIQUE AVIATION magazines. Aero Digest, Avia-
tion, Popular Aviation, Air Facts, Modern
Mechanics, Airway Age, Sportsman Pilot, and etc.
About 200 volumes. Best oHer over 50 G. Max
Freeman, Route 1, Box 600, Wilkesbore, NC
28697 or919/973-4790. (5-1)
FOR SALE:3,000Aviationmagazines.Aerial Age,
Aero Digest, Air Progress, Aviation Week, Flying,
Western Flying, original Sportsman Pilot, Midwest
Flyer. SASE please. Jameson, 4322 Bellhaven,
Oshkosh, WI 54904. (5-1)
WANTED:
WANTED: December 1929, Aeronautics (Popular
Aviation). Payanyreasonablepriceorhavenumer-
ous Popular Aviation pre-1935 traders. Bas, 6111
S. Joplin, Tulsa, OK 74136, 918/494-8908. (5-1)
SERVICES:
ANTIQUE RESTORERS - REPLICA BUILDERS
- Why ruin your authentic masterpiece with nic-
ropress? The Navy splice still lives! $20.00 each
any size. Send your cables marked to length plus
12 inches, togetherwith turnbuckle eye if required
to A&E #14917, Ralph Korngold, 385 Wilton Av-
enue,Palo Alto,CA 94306. (5-2)
Where The Sellers and Buyers Meet...
$130.00 each outright. Ready for shipment. Call
The VinlageTrader, Wittman Airfield 813/355-3991. (6-3)
Oshkosh, WI 54903-2591.
25e perword,20 word minimum. Send yourad to
28 MAY 1988
CLEAN
SHINE
PROTECT
For the discriminating Pilot and F.B.O.
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The EAA Aviation
List: $12.00 per bottle
Center's staff
uses RACE GLAZE EMPrice: $9.95 per bottle
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EMCase Price (12): $72.00
protectthe
Above prices include shipping forContinental U.S.A. Only.
museum'sprice-
Send $9.95 foreach 16 oz. bottleor save an extra $3.95 perbottle and send $72.00
less collection of
foreach case of 12 - 16 oz. bottles to:
aircraft.
EAA Wittman Airfield.Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086
Wisconsin Residents Add 5% Sales Tax
Steannc",lly-In
THE UPCOMING r.v. DOCUMENTARY . ..
NOW AVAILABLE IN HOME VIDEO!
Capturethebreathtaking beautyofthefifteenth annual
nationalgatheringofStearmanbiplanesfeaturingtheU.S.
military'sfamousWorldWar II primarytrainer.
STEARMANFLY-IN ispackedwith specially-shotflight
scenesthatvividlyconveytheenchantedspiritof flying in an
opencockpitbiplane. Infull color, with enginesounds
recordedinstereo,this29 minutetelevision documentary
powerfullyprojectsthethunderous
excitementofthemanyflying events
attheFly-In.
An historical perspectiveofthe
venerableStearmantraineraugmentsthe
visual feast. Includedareinterviewswith
manyknowledgeableFly-In participants
whosetopicsrangefrom competition
aerobaticsto pilotcomradeship.
NarratedbyCol. WalterJ. Boyne
(USAF-Ret.), formerDirectorofthe
Smithsonian Institution'sNationalAirand
SpaceMuseum.Col. Boyneis apilotwith
over5,000flight hoursin variousaircraft
includingthe B-47 and B-52.
HANDLEMANFILMWORKS-P.O.Box 166, Birmingham,MI 48012
Sendme_ _ _ cassette(s)ofSTEARMANFLY-IN @ $29.95percassette,
plus$3.00 shipping andhandlingforeachcassetteordered. Availablein VHS
only. Enclosed is mycheckfor$
Pleasecharge my:
o VISA 0 MasterCard Acc!. No. Exp.___
Signature ________________________
Ship To: Name _______________ ________
Address ___ ___________ ________
City/State/Zip--------:("'M"'iC7h,"'g-:-.n :-'''' .s''' idc;.-::n::: ts-=p"'' ,.''' .:c s.''.-::d;:;d-:4"' %--:s-::.::: ,."s:::t."' x.)
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Fabric Selection Guide showing actual sample colors and
styles01materials:$3.00.
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259LowerMorrisvilleRd., Dept .VA
Fallsington,PA19054 (215)295-4115
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r .... RE-UVEIT!
\ - \ :
ik.... ,
The fabulous times ofTurner,Doolittle,Wedell
and Wittman recreated as never beforein this
600-page two-volume series. Printed on high grade
paper with sharp,clear photoreproduction. Official
race results 1927through 1939- more than 1,000

photos- 3-viewdrawings- scoresofarticlesabout
peopleandplanesthatrecapturetheglory,thedrama,
the excitementofairracing duringthe golden years.
Vol. I (no.21-14452) and Vol. II (no.21-14451)
are sold for $14.95 each, with postage charges of
$2.40 for one volume and $3.65 for two volumes.
Send yourcheck ormoneyorderto:EMAviation
Foundation,Attn:Dept. MO,Wittman Airfield,
Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086,414/426-4800.Outside
Wisconsin, phone 1-800-843-3612.
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