Vintage Airplane - May 1988

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by Bob Lickteig
In  planning  "The  World  of Sport  Avia-
tion,"  Oshkosh  '88,  the  EAA  Antique/ 
Classic  Division  has  scheduled  a  week  of 
group activities.  Listed below are  the dates 
and  chairmen of each event.  Please contact 
any  of the  chairman  if you  need  additional 
information  or to  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 
be flying  to  Shawano, Wisconsin, 55  miles 
north of Oshkosh. Shawano Flying Service 
will  be  our  host.  Two  sod  and  one  hard 
surface  runway  will  be  open,  plus  a  sea-
plane base - so we're extending an  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 
Chairman  - Bob  Lumley,  414/255-
Antique/Classic  Picnic 
The  Antique/Classic  Picnic  will  be  held 
at  the  EAA Nature Center Sunday evening, 
July  31,  starting  at  6:00 p.m. The commit-
tee  has  arranged  for  refreshments  and  the 
serving  of  a  pig  roast  with  all  the  trim-
mings.  Tickets are $6.00 - a real  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-
Antique/Classic  Workshop 
The  Antique/Classic  Workshop  located 
next  to  the  Antique/Classic  Headquarters 
will  again  be  in  operation  throughout  the 
Convention week. Please come by and help 
with  the  completion of our project and  gain 
the  hands-on  experience  of actually  work-
ing  on  a  restoration. 
Chairman  - George  Meade,  414/228-
2 MAY 1988
Antique/Classic  Parade of Flight 
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-
Antique/Classic  Participant  Plaque 
The  Antique/Classic  Division  will  pre-
sent to  the  owner of each registered aircraft 
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 
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  of sailing. 
Chairman  - Jeannie  Hill ,  815/943-
Antique/Classic  Parking 
Arrangements  have  been  made  for  the 
Type Clubs, and any  individuals who wish, 
to  park  their  type  aircraft  together.  The 
parking committee  has  developed  a  simple 
type parking plan.  Information and  parking 
instructions  will  be  mailed  to  you.  Contact 
the  chairman. 
Chairman  - Art  Morgan,  414/442-
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-
Antique/Classic  Type  Club  Headquar-
All  type  clubs  are  invited  to  set  up  their 
headquarters in  the type club tent.  We have 
again  set  up  a  larger  tent  so  there  will  be 
enough  room. 
Chairman  - Butch  Joyce,  919/427-
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-
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 
A complete schedule of forums  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-
Antique/Classic  Photo  Contest 
The  fifth  annual  Antique/Classic 
Amateur Photo Contest  will  be  held  during 
Oshkosh  '88.  All  contestants  must  register 
at  the  Antique/Classic  headquarters and  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-
Antique/Classic  Hall  of Fame  Reunion 
The  Annual  Hall  of  Fame  Reunion  for 
previous  Grand  and  Reserve  Grand  Cham-
pion  aircraft will  again  be  held  at  Oshkosh 
'88.  A special display area,  special awards, 
and  a  special  fly-by  recognition  are 
planned.  All  previous  winners  are  encour-
aged to  bring their aircraft back to Oshkosh 
for  the  members  and  guests  to  enjoy. 
Chairman  - Dan  Neuman,  612/571-
OX-S  Aviation  Pioneers 
The  OX-5  Aviation  Pioneers  headquar-
ters  tent  is  located  in  the  Antique/Classic 
Chairman  - Bob  Wallace,  301/686-
Please check your Oshkosh  '88 Conven-
tion  program  and  EAA  Antique/Classic 
headquarters  for  complete  details  of  all 
It's  going  to  be  a  great  Convention, 
make  the  Antique/Classic  area  your  head-
quarters  for  Oshkosh  '88 . 
Please  remember,  we're  better together. 
Welcome  aboard  - join  us  and  you  have 
it  all .  • 

MAY  1988 •  Vol.  16,  No.5 
Copyright "' 1988 by  the  EAA  AntiquelClassic  Division, Inc. All  rights  reserved. 
Tom  Poberezny 
Dick Matt 
Mark  Phelps 
Mike Drucks 
Mary Jones 
Norman Petersen 
Dick Cavin 
George A.  Hardie, Jr. 
Dennis Parks 
Carol  Krone 
Jim Koepnick 
Carl  Schuppel 
Jeff Isom 
President  Vice President 
R. J. lickteig  M.C. "Kelly" Viets 
1718 Lakewood  RI.  2,  Box 128 
Albert Lea, MN 56007  Lyndon, KS 66451 
507/373-2922 913/828-3518
Secretary  Treasurer 
George S. York  E.E. " Buck" Hilbert 
181  Sloboda Ave.  P.O. Box 145 
Mansfield, OH 44906  Union,IL60180 
419/529-4378 815/923-4591
John S. Copeland  Philip Coulson 
9 Joanne Drive  28415 Springbrook Dr. 
Westborough, MA01581  Lawton, MI49065 
617/366-7245 616/624-6490
William A. Eickhoff  Stan Gomoll 
41515th Ave.,  N.E.  1042 90th Lane, NE 
SI. Petersburg, FL 33704  Minneapolis, MN 55434 
813/823-2339 6121784-1172 
Dale A. Gustafson  Espie M_ Joyce, Jr. 
7724 Shady Hill Drive  Box 468 
Indianapolis, IN 46278  Madison, NC 27025 
317/293-4430 919/427-0216
Arthur R. Morgan  Gene Morris 
3744 North 51 st Blvd.  115C Steve Court, R.A. 2 
Milwaukee, WI 53216  Roanoke, TX 76262 
414/442-3631 817/491-9110
Daniel Neuman  Ray Olcott 
1521  Berne Circle W.  104 Bainbridge 
Minneapolis, MN 55421  Nokomis, FL 34275 
612/571-0893 813/488-8791
S.H.  " Wes"  Schmid 
2359  Lefeber  Avenue 
Wauwatosa,  WI  53213 
S.J.  Wittman 
7200  S.E. 85th  Lane 
Ocala, FL  32672 
Robert C. "Bob" Brauer  John A. Fogerty 
9345 S.  Hoyne  RR2, Box 70 
Chicago, IL 60620  Roberts, WI 54023 
3121779-2105  715/425-2455
Robert D. "Bob" Lumley  Steven C. Nesse 
N104 W20387  2009 Highland Ave. 
Willow Creek Road  Albert Lea, MN 56007 
Colgate, WI 53017  507/373-1674
2  Straight and Level/by Bob Lickteig 
4  AlC News/by Mark Phelps 
5  LeHers to the Editor 
6  Calendar 
7  Vintage Literature/by Dennis Park 
9 Member's Projects/by Norm Petersen 
10  Interesting Member/by D.F. Neuman 
12  Rose's Ryans /by Norm Petersen 
15  Moments from Sun 'n Fun/by Mark Phelps 
Page  20 
16  Scout's Honor/by Nino Lama 
20  Upside Down Ercoupe/by Mary Jones 
24  Biplane Boilermaker/by Mark Phelps 
27  Mystery Plane/by George Hardy 
28  Vintage Trader 
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 
their owner,  Bill  Rose  can  be  found  on  page  12. 
(Photo by  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  1957 by Ed  "Skeeter" Carlson of Spokane, Washington. In 
1976 it was rebuilt as a C-3B with a Whirlwind engine and re-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  Peter Bowers) 
trademarks  of  the  above  associations  and  their  use  by  any  person  other  than  the  above  associations  is  strictly 
Editorial  Policy: Readers are encouraged to submit stories and  photographs. Policy opinions expressed in articles are 
solely those  of the authors.  Responsibility for accuracy in  reporting  rests entirely with  the contributor. Material should 
be  sent to: Editor, The  VINTAGE  AIRPLANE, Wittman  Airfield, Oshkosh,  WI  54903-3086.  Phone: 414/426-4800.
The  VINTAGE  AIRPLANE  (ISSN  0091-6943)  is  published  and  owned  exclusively by  EAA  Antiquel Classic  Division. 
Inc.  of  the  Experimental  Aircraft Association, Inc. and  is published  monthly at  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  is open  :0 all  who  are  interested  in  aviation. 
ADVERTISING - Antiquel Classic  Division  does not guarantee or endorse  any product offered  through  our advertis-
ing. We  invite constructive  criticism  and  welcome  any report of inferior merchandise obtained through our advertising 
so  that  corrective  measures can  be  taken. 
Postmaster: Send address changes to EAA Antiquel Classic Division, Inc., Wittman Airfield, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086. 
Compiled by Mark Phelps
C.G.  TAYLOR  1898  - 1988 
C.G.  Taylor,  former  partner of William 
T.  Piper  and  designer  of  the  Taylorcraft 
line  of airplanes  died  on  March  29,  1988 
in Texas. He would have been 90 this June. 
Anyone  with  leads  on  pioneer  aviators 
who may  be  interviewed at Oshkosh during 
this  year's Fly-in  should  notify  the  Pioneer 
Aviation  Video  Committee.  The goal  is  to 
capture aviation' s historical  people on  tape 
for  future  generations .  Interview  sessions 
during  the  convention  can  be  scheduled  at 
the interviewee's conveninece. If you know 
of  someone  who's  aviation  legacy  should 
be  preserved,  contact  Bob  Lumly ,  Willow 
Creek  Road, Colgate , WI  53017, 414/255-
The  results  of the judging  at Sun  'n Fun 
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 
course of the week.  Expect to see lots more 
about  Sun  ' n  Fun  ' 88  in  upcoming  issues 
Grand Champion: 
Fairchild  KR21  N362N 
Jim  Kimball 
EAA  49344,  AlC 8908
Zellwood,  Florida 
Reserve  Grand Champion: 
Piper J-3  N32957 
Barbara  Fidler 
EAA  124962,  A/C 10377
Alva,  Florida 
Past Grand Champion: 
Travelair D-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 
Outstanding Aircraft: 
Beech  Staggerwing  N 17SW 
Jim  Gorman 
EAA  29182,  A/C 306
George  York 
EAA  11310,  AlC 1085
Mansfield,  Ohio 
Outstanding Aircraft: 
1939  Taylorcraft  N23663 
A.C.  Hutson 
EAA  185948,  AlC 7122
Griffin ,  Georgia 
Grand Champion: 
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  7 AC  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 
Outstanding of Type: 
Ercoupe  N94707 
Burt  Ellegaard 
EAA  84292 
Shakopee,  Minnesota 
Outstanding of Type: 
Luscombe  8A  N 1197K 
A.  Allen  Arbuthnot 
EAA  119679,  AIC 3500
Lake  Alfred,  Florida 
Outstanding of Type: 
Funk  N77724 
Dan  Towery  II 
EAA  30621,  A/C 10743
Dover,  Delaware 
Outstanding of Type: 
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.
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.
Alberto Catania
153 Shoreham Drive
Downsview, Ontario, Canada M3N I S8
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 . •
SHIRE - 12th Annual Aviation Flea Market at
Hampton Airfield. Anything aviation related
okay. Food available. Contact: 603/964-6749.
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-
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-
24th West Coast Antique Fly-In and Air Show
at Watsonville Airport. Contact: Watsonville
Chamber of Commerce, 4081724-3849.
2nd Annual Twin Bonanza Association conven-
tion at the Americana Lake Geneva Resort.
Contact: Twin Bonanza Association, 19684
Lakeshore Drive, Three Rivers, M149093, 616/
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.
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.
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).
nual Fairchild Reunion. Contact: Mike Kelly, 22
Cardinal Drive, Coldwater, MI49036, 517/278-
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/
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.
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.
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.
- Aerospace America 1988 Air Show and
Trade Exposition. Contact: Tom Jones, Air
Show Director 405/681-3000.
tional Meyers Association Fly-in and Seminar
at Gaston's Resort. Contact: Wm. E. Gaffney,
26 Rt. 17K, Newburgh, NY 12550
Annual West Coast Travel Air Fly-In. Join the
biplane fun. Contact: Jerry Impellezzeri, 4925
Wilma Way, San Jose, CA 95124.
Annual Colonial Fly-In sponsored by EAA
Chapter 156 at Patrick Henry Airport. Contact:
Chet Sprague, 8 Sinclair Road, Hampton, VA
23669, 8041723-3904.
ter 226 Fly-In Breakfast. Contact: 317/378-
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.
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
Oklahoma City Chapter of AAA Fly-In. Contact:
George Blackmore, 4051789-6281 or Bud Sut-
ton, 405/392-5608.
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,
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
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.
Aircraft Owners Reunion. Contact: Ray Pahls,
12724 E. Ashbury Circle, Apt. U-l04, Aurora,
CO 80014,303/695-4983.
- 36th annual International EAA Convention
and Sport Aviation Exhibition at Wittman Field.
Contact: John Burton, EAA Headquarters,
Wittman Airfield, Oshkosh, WI 54903-3086.
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/
Sussex Air Show '88. Contact: Paul G. Styger,
Airport Manager, P.O. Box 311, Sussex, New
Jersey 07461,201 /875-9919.
BalioonfestlEAA Chapter 660 Air Show. Con-
tact: 3031751-1981.
NIA - Gathering of Taildraggers at
Georgetown Municipal Airport. Contact: P. O.
Box 1438, Georgetown, California, call (days)
916/677-9009, (eves) 916/333-1343.
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.
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.
- Rocky Mountain Regional Fly-In. Sponsored
by Colorado State EAA Chapter. Contact: 303/
798-6086 or 3031751-1981.
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.
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-
OCTOBER 6-9 - CELINA, OHIO - 13th Annual
International Cessna 120/140 Association
Convention Fly-In at Lakefield Airport. Contact:
Terry Zimmerman, 419/268-2565.
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.
31 st Annual Tulsa Fly-In. Contact: Charlie Har-
ris, 3933 S. Peoria, Tulsa, OK 74105,9181742-
8th Annual National Bucker Fly-In. Contact:
Frank Price, Route 1, Box 419, Moody, TX
76557, 817/853-2008. •
6 MAY 1988

APRIL. 1913 Serial No. 68
by Dennis Parks
Li brary/Archives Director
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
The following editorials and the let-
ter to the editor are from 1913 issues
of the magazine.
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-
way and could not distinguish a biplane
from the binomial theorem.
(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.
(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
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
Now tack the silk on the frames by
means of brass-headed tacks taken
from parlor furniture. If you 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.
(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
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. If it 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 
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,  WIllis J. 
Lima, Ohio 
Pennington,  David  A. 
Corpus Christi , Texas 
Berry,  Donald  F. 
Taylorville,  Illinois 
Hudec, John 
Collinsville,  Oklahoma 
Palmer,  Henry C. 
SI.  Petersburg, Florida 
Steinberg,  Robert 
Rawlins,  Wyoming 
Orson, Wilbur 
Broomfield,  Colorado 
Price, Garry S. 
Portsmouth,  New  Hampshire 
Sorensen,  Lloyd S. 
Solvang,  California 
8 MAY  1988 
Rainford,  Stephen 
North  Chatham, New  York 
Reese,  William 
Dallas, Texas 
Robbins,  Michael 
Sulphur Springs,  Texas 
Shear,  James J.
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 
Cueens Co.,  Nova  Scotia,  Canada 
Brown,  Rodney 
Redmond,  Washington 
Taylor,  Larry J. 
Madison, Georgia 
Carnelrd,  Larry  D. 
VallejO, California 
Bailey,  Everett G. 
Newalla,  Oklahoma 
Turslch,  Ernest J. 
Gatineau,  Quebec,  Canada  Mariena,  Georgia 
Plews,  Larry D.  McDanel, Lewis 
Tehachapi,  California  Florence,  Kentucky 
Brodeur,  H.  Wallace  Goodman, Walter 
Amston, Connecticut  Tranquility,  California 
Wakefield,  Michael  Briere Jr.,  Leo J. 
FI.  Mitchell,  Kentucky  Mechanicsville,  Virginia 
McNeil, Walter  Wayman,  TIm 
Norcross,  Georgia  Santa  Rosa,  California 
Rezabek,  John D. 
Cedar  Rapids, Iowa 
Ziegler, John C. 
Watauga, Texas 
Fleming, Carl  A. 
FI.  Wayne,  Indiana 
Foster,  Robert W. 
Indianola,  Iowa 
Ketron, Terry 
Newton,  North  Carolina 
Degenhardt,  Ronald  W. 
Janesville,  Wisconsin 
Laskey, Chris 
Ottawa, Illinois 
Trolan Jr., Wallace  L.
Allston, Massachusetts 
Romero,  Marlo I. 
Fieldale, Virginia 
Davenport, Carol  L.
Maple Valley,  Washington 
Ploegsma,  Phyllis 
Enumclaw,  Washington 
Holmberg, Jon 
Auburn,  Washington 
Westmlnlster,  Colorado 
Dorothy,  Philip 
Reinbeck,  Iowa 
Teague, Dougtas E. 
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. 
Idaho Falls, Idaho 
Bradford,  Douglas 
Costa  Mesa,  California 
McCary, Steven  W. 
Mesa,  Washington 
Pllngston,  Lee 
Palos  Park,  Illinois 
Thompson,  Rod 
Alstead,  New  Hampshire 
Middleton, Forrest C. 
Minerva,  Ohio 
Farmers  Branch,  Texas 
Barnes,  Homer M. 
Winston·Salem, North  Carolina 
Goeken,  William K. 
Roanoke,  Texas 
Miller,  Robert K. 
Corona,  California 
Stout,  Lloyd J. 
Torrance,  California 
Henard,  Donald  C. 
Memphis,  Tennessee 
Moses,  Howard J. 
Lucerne,  California 
Steelhammer,  Vic 
Canyon  Country,  California 
Greethurst, Dean  R. 
SI.  Paul,  Minnesota 
McCarrell, Wayne 
OeQueen,  Arizona 
Nielsen,  Rick 
Lorain,  Ohio 
Poole,  Robert W. 
Page, Arizona 
Keller,  John M. 
Sarasota,  Florida 
Gendreau, Charles  A. 
Brooklyn  Park, Minnesota 
by Norm  Petersen 
Yale  Brooks And  His Cub 
The  enclosed  photo  is  of  a  very  deter-
mined  man  and  his  immaculately  re-
stored  wood-spar  J-3  Cub.  Yale  Brooks 
(EAA 301842,  AlC  12035), 9 Hartley Lane, 
Brockton,  MA  02402,  had  dreamed  of 
owning  a  J-3  Cub  from  the  time  he  was 
nine  years  old.  When  he  retired  from 
police work at age 61 , he bought a basket-
case  Cub  and  totally  restored  it  over  a 
period  of a year. 
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  he had  as a child. 
Yale,  we salute you and your tenacity and 
The middle photo of a pretty Aeronca 7AC 
"Champ"  was  sent in  by owner Jim Sob-
ralske  (EAA  301264)  of  3204  Woodside 
Drive,  Graham,  North  Carolina  27252 
along  with  some  notes on  the  history of 
N83933,  SIN 7 AC-2601. 
Delivered from the Middletown, Ohio fac-
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,  who based  the Champ 
at his sod strip called  Broken  Prop Field 
near Berlin,  Wisconsin.  That's where the 
top photo was taken. Walt and the Champ 
attended  nearly  every  fly-in  throughout 
Wisconsin,  on  wheels  in  summer  and 
skis in  winter. 
Young  Jim learned to fly when he was 16 
years  old  and  soloed  N83933  on  skis  in 
1974.  Some  14  years  later,  he  has flown 
the  Champ  to  North  Carolina  where  he 
resides  and  plans  on  recovering  the 
Champ  before long. The  Grade  A  cotton 
has been on the airplane for 20 years and 
still  looks nice! Jim  looks forward  to the 
day he can fly N83933 back to Wisconsin 
for the  EAA Fly-In  along  with  a trip back 
to the home field  in  Berlin! 

nteresting Members 
by Daniel F. Neuman
(EAA  871 , AIC 325)
1521 Berne Circle W.
Minneapolis, MN 55421
Brad  Larson  soloed  in  1934  in  this Curtiss Junior CW-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  Paramont Cabinaire. 
When I was asked to write an article
about an interesting EAA member, 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
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
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-
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
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 . •
Early  morning  sun glistens  on  the  classic  lines of the  Ryan  STM,  NC17343,  as  it taxies  past at  Oshkosh  '86.  This is the model  that 
was exported to many countries in the late 1930's and early 1940s. 
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
Bill Rose, complete with Antique/Classic hat on backwards taxis the Ryan STA "Special " 
to the assembly area for the '87 Oshkosh Parade of Flight. Even the background Beech 
Staggerwing adds  class to this photo! 
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-
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
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.
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
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..
Above: A.C. Hutson with his sanitary
1939 Taylorcraft in tow. Isn't that a great
set of first initials for an antique/classic
  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
'The 'Ifiomas-%orse companygave us the 'Tommy Scout"
and the citizens of Ithaca,   yorf(chipped in a few
s{eep{ess nights.
by 9{jno Lama
('EM 287982) 
28 :Forest Jlcre 'Drive 
I tfiaca, g.,(jw Yort(
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
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.
The  Model  5-4 "Longtail"  Thomas-Morse 
Scout  powered  by  a  Le  Rhone  rotary  en-
gine  of  110 hp.  The Le  Rhone  used three 
gallons of oil per  hour.  1917 price of the 
S-4 was  $13,200. 
One of the 24-hour runups that kept Uncle 
Fred  awake  nights. 
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. 
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
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
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
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 .•
An  Upside- UMOa Ercoupe 
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
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
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,
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  sight that  greeted  Frank  Glynn  when  he  arrived  at  the airport. 
c--.. -,

_____41;' .
Frank  Glynn  and  his  favorite  little 
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
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
Upside- UMOa 
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
When it came time to recover the
wings , Nelson and Frank decided to
pull off all the heavy metal (.030) skins Ready  for the  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-
Glynn just cut an  overlay of the old panel to get around  some troublesome flanges that 
were  complicating  the addition  of some  new  instrumentation.  And  this  is  how it  looks 
with  all  the  goodies stuffed  in. 
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.
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
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.
William Besler and the steam-powered Trav.el Air.
Steam power  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
Detail of the steam engine installation showing the boiler, burner and associated plumb-
ing and fittings.
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
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-
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
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 . •
It's Exciting! 
It's for Everyone! 
See  this  priceless  collection  of 
rare,  historically  significant  air-
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the  many  educational  displays 
and  audio-visual  presentations. 
Stop by  - here's something the 
entire  family  will  enjoy.  Just 
minutes away! 
8:30 to 5:00  p.rn. 
Monday thru Saturday 
11  :00 a.m.  to 5:00 p.m. 
Closed  Easter.  Thanksgiving,  Christmas 
and  New Years  Day  (Guided  group tour 
arrangements must be made two weeks 
in  advance). 
The  EM Aviation  Center  is  located  on 
Wittman Field, Oshkosh. Wis.  - just off 
Highway 41.  Going  North  Exit Hwy.  26 
or  44.  Going  South  Exit  Hwy.  44  and 
follow signs. For fly-ins  - free  bus  from 
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Wittman Airfield 
Oshkosh,  WI  54903-3065 
1936  J-2 Taylor (Piper) - Excellent condition. 65 
hp  Continental.  Also  Piper  J-5  basket  case  com-
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Bob Schroeder, days 414/739-0137, evenings 414/ 
766-5993.  (5-2) 
Collectors - Antique/Classic 1940 Stinson Model 
10, TIAF 2202.05,  TSOH  1327.55.  Fabric  Aviatex 
Endura.  Estate sale.  Very good condition. $12,000, 
Canadian  OBO.  Slim  Sherk 604/392-2185.  (6-2) 
Collectors  Dream  - 1941  DH82A  British  Tiger 
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to  111  Prospect  Hill,  Trenton,  Ontario,  Canada 
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sheets.  Plans - $60.00. Info Pack - $5.00.  Send 
check  or  money  order  to:  ACRO  SPORT,  INC., 
Box 462,  Hales Corners, WI 53130. 414/529-2609. 
ACRO  SPORT - Single  place biplane  capable of 
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follow  plans  includes  nearly  100 isometrical  draw-
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and  materials  list.  Full  size  wing  drawings.  Plans 
plus  139  page  Builder's  Manual  - $60.00.  Info 
Pack - $5.00.  Super Acro  Sport Wing  Drawing -
$15.00.  The  Technique  of  Aircraft  Building  -
$10.00  plus  $2.00  postage.  Send  check  or money 
order  to:  ACRO  SPORT,  INC.,  Box  462,  Hales 
Corners,  WI  53130. 414/529-2609. 
NEW  W-670  Continental  220  hp  Cylinders. 
Brand  new  aircraft  cylinders.  Never  been  on  an 
engine.  These  are  not  tank  engine  cylinders. 
Send  check  or  money  order  wilh  copy  10  Vinlage  Trader·  EAA, Willman  Airfield,  Oshkosh. WI  54903·3086. 
Tolal Words -----.Number of  Issues  10  Run  ____  __________________ 
TOlal $_ ___ Signalure  _____________________________ 
Address  __________________________________  ___ 
Have We Got  A  Part for You! 20 years accumula-
tion  of  parts  for  all  types  of  aircraft  - antiques, 
classics, homebuilts, warbirds.  Everything from the 
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Rt.  1,  Box 8020,  Mena,  AR  71953, phone 501 /394-
1022  or 501 /394-2342.  (3-2/579111) 
suit  your  design,  any  size,  shape,  colors.  Five 
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brochure.  Hein  Specialties,  4202P  North  Drake, 
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Very  large  collection  of  CUSTOM-BOUND  AN-
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Mechanics, Airway Age, Sportsman Pilot, and  etc. 
About  200  volumes.  Best  oHer  over  50  G.  Max 
Freeman,  Route  1,  Box  600,  Wilkesbore,  NC 
28697  or 919/973-4790.  (5-1) 
FOR  SALE: 3,000 Aviation magazines. Aerial Age,
Aero Digest, Air Progress, Aviation Week, Flying,
Western Flying, original Sportsman Pilot, Midwest
Flyer. SASE  please.  Jameson,  4322  Bellhaven, 
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WANTED:  December  1929,  Aeronautics (Popular
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S.  Joplin,  Tulsa,  OK  74136,  918/494-8908.  (5-1) 
- Why  ruin  your  authentic  masterpiece  with  nic-
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to  A&E  #14917,  Ralph  Korngold,  385  Wilton  Av-
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Where  The  Sellers  and  Buyers  Meet. .. 
$130.00  each  outright.  Ready  for  shipment.  Call 
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Oshkosh,  WI  54903-2591 . 
25e  per word, 20  word  minimum.  Send  your ad  to 
28  MAY  1988 
For  the  discriminating  Pilot  and  F.B.O.
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EM Case  Price  (12):  $72.00 
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Above  prices  include  shipping  for Continental  U.S.A.  Only.
museum's price-
Send  $9.95  for each  16  oz.  bottle or  save  an  extra  $3.95  per bottle  and  send  $72.00
less  collection  of 
for each  case  of  12  - 16  oz.  bottles  to: 
EAA •  Wittman  Airfield. Oshkosh,  WI  54903-3086 
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An  historical  perspective of the 
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whose topics range from  competition 
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Narrated by Col.  Walter J.  Boyne 
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Smithsonian  Institution's National Air and 
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Send  your check  or money order to: EM Aviation 
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