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Waco Aircraft Company Records, 1930-1950

Creator:
Waco Aircraft Company
Subject:
Junkin, Elwood J (Elwood James) 1897-1926
Weaver, George E. "Buck" 1895-1924
Brukner, Clayton J 1896-1977
Weaver Aircraft Company
Waco Aircraft Company
Physical description:
184.1 cubic feet (168 Legal document boxes) (35 drawers)
219.66 linear feet
Type:
Drawings
Collection descriptions
Financial records
Reports
Place:
United States
Date:
1930
1930-1960
1930-1950
Topic:
Aeronautics, Commercial
Waco Aircraft Family
Aeronautics, Military
Local number:
XXXX-0151
Notes:
In 1920 Clayton J. Bruckner, Elmwood "Sam" Junkin, and Buck Weaver formed an aircraft company known as the Weaver Aircraft Company in Troy, OH. By the 1930s the company, known as Waco Aircraft Co. since 1929, was a leader in the design of wood and fabric aircraft, with Waco aircraft being operated by public, private, and corporate owners in thirty-five countries. During World War II Waco devoted itself entirely to war production, manufacturing large numbers of troop- and cargo-carrying gliders. Following the war Waco attempted to market a wholly new design but the postwar slump in the private aviation market and the high development costs of the aircraft forced Waco to withdraw from aircraft manufacture in June 1947. During its twenty-eight year existence Waco produced sixty-two different aircraft models and led all its competitors in number of aircraft registered
Summary:
This collection consists of the records of the Waco Aircraft Company. The material includes office files of the company, marketing and sales information, and design data. Also included are original engineering drawings and report files
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
Visitor Tag(s):

[Trade catalogs on airplanes]

Author:
Waco Aircraft Company
Smithsonian Libraries American History Trade Literature Collection DSI
Physical description:
<1> v. : ill
Type:
Catalogs
Trade catalogs
Date:
1930
1930-
Topic:
Airplanes
Waco (Brand name)
Notes:
Trade literature
Includes story of Waco aircrafts in competition at the Fifth National Air Tour in Detroit
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Visitor Tag(s):

A. Francis Arcier Collection, 1890-1969

Creator:
Arcier, A. Francis 1890-1969
Subject:
Arcier, A. Francis 1890-1969
Wittemann Aircraft Corp
Fokker Aircraft Corp
GAC (General Airplanes Corp)
Waco Aircraft Company
Air Force Museum (U.S.)
Physical description:
2.18 cubic feet (2 records center boxes) (1 16x20x1 flatbox)
2.08 linear feet
Type:
Correspondence
Collection descriptions
Diaries
Drawings
Photographs
Publications
Financial records
Scrapbooks
Date:
1890
1890-1969
Topic:
Aeronautics
Aeronautical engineers
Periodicals
Local number:
XXXX-0072
Notes:
A. Francis Arcier (1890-1969) was an aircraft designer and engineer. Born in London, he immigrated to the United States and became a US citizen in 1929. He worked for a number of aircraft companies, including Wittemann Aircraft Corporation (1919-25), Fokker Aircraft Corporation (1925-28), General Airplanes Corporation (1928-30), and Waco Aircraft Company (1930-47). He was a scientific advisor at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH, from 1948 until his retirement in 1963, and continued his association with the Air Force until 1968
Summary:
Contents: Newspapers and magazine clippings, job applications, and other material offering biographical information, including published articles from 1943 and 1981. Photographs and negatives, personal and business correspondence, aircraft drawings, technical papers, dissertations, and related correspondence
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
Visitor Tag(s):

Additional Online Media:

Waco 9

Manufacturer:
Waco
Materials:
Fuselage: steel tube, fabric-covered
Wings: wood, fabric-covered
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 9.54 m (31 ft. 4 in.)
Length: 7.19 m (23 ft. 6 in.)
Height: 2.82 m (9 ft. 3 in.)
Weight: Empty 600 kg (1,320 lbs.)
Weight: Gross 953 kg (2,100 lbs.)
Engine: Curtiss OX-5, 90 hp
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Date:
1925-1927
Credit Line:
Gift of Clayton J.. Brukner
Inventory Number:
A19721292000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
Two-seat, general aviation biplane; red and black with OX-5 engine.
Summary:
The name "Waco" has long been synonymous with popular open-cockpit biplanes of the golden age of flight, the late 1920s and the 1930s. Clayton Brukner and Elwood Junkin, first of the Weaver Aircraft Company, known as Waco, and then the Advance Aircraft Company, designed the three-place Model 9 around the World War I-surplus Curtiss OX-5 engine in 1925. The rugged but graceful aircraft quickly found favor as a barnstorming, racing, and all-around utility aircraft.
The Museum's Waco 9, N452, serial number 389, had a succession of owners in the mid-west United States. In 1966, owner Marion McClure retired the antique aircraft when it did not meet the safety requirements of brakes and tail-wheel at his local airport. In 1972, original Waco partner and designer Clayton J. Brukner purchased the aircraft to donate it to the Museum.
Manufacturer: The Advance Aircraft Company, Troy, Ohio, 1927.
Long Description:
The name 'Waco" has long been synonymous with popular biplanes of the "golden age" of flying, the late 1920s and the 1930s. In 1920, George "Buck" Weaver, Charlie Meyers, Clayton Brukner, and Elwood Junkin formed the Weaver Aircraft Company in Lorain, Ohio. It was Brukner and Junkin who established the Waco name as an enduring line of versatile and classic aircraft.
The Weaver Aircraft Company, known as "Waco," built a few aircraft and moved to Troy, Ohio, in 1923, as the Advance Aircraft Company. After the death of Weaver in 1924, Brukner and Junkin took over the business and introduced the Model 9, or Nine, in 1925. It was an immediate success for several reasons. First, war surplus Curtiss Jennies and the like were becoming less available but more importantly, the Nine was a well-designed aircraft, built around the available Curtiss OX-5 or Wright Hispano engines, with better performance than the Jenny and a reasonable price tag. The bench seat in the front cockpit could snugly accommodate two passengers; the single cockpit for the pilot was in the rear. The company entered the Nine in the Ford Air Tour of 1925 in which performed admirably and the publicity resulted in good sales. At least 14 Waco 9s participated in the National Air Races in 1926, and several Waco pilots won their events. Aside from its use as an excellent barnstorming and racing plane, it also served in the aerial spray business and in early airline use; Clifford Ball's airlines and Embry-Riddle Company both used Wacos in 1927. Edo floats could also be attached for water operations.
New regulations of the emerging aircraft industry in the mid-twenties soon challenged all contemporary designs. Barnstormers had often cut corners by using aircraft of questionable airworthiness and many pilot qualifications were also questionable. A series of accidents and a mounting public demand resulted in the government licensing of pilots and aircraft. The new Air Commerce Department Regulations of December 31, 1926, required that all aircraft manufacturers secure an Airplane Type Certificate, or ATC, for their products. To be issued an ATC, the manufacturer had to submit strength calculations for the design and then demonstrate through static tests on a prototype that it met or exceeded minimum standards. Aircraft production today must still meet these requirements.
Because neither of the designers of the Waco 9 had more than a high school education, they feared that the airplane was doomed. However, a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology made stress calculations, and the U.S. Army bought one and static-tested it to destruction at McCook Field. The Air Commerce regulations required the structure to be able to withstand a load 6.5 times its own weight. The Waco 9 held up to a factor of 7.5 and was subsequently issued ATC number 11 in July 1927.
Construction of the Nine was typical of the time: welded steel tubing with all-wood wing structure, entirely fabric-covered. The engine radiator was mounted under the leading edge of the center portion of the upper wing and became a Waco trademark. Large cable-operated ailerons were attached to the upper wings too. The landing gear was a straight-axle type. The standard finish was silver-painted fabric with blue paint on the exposed metal parts. The attributes of good performance and reliability combined with attractive design resulted in a production of about 276 Waco 9s from 1925 to 1927. By then, its new and improved sister ship, the Waco 10, outsold the Nine.
The museum's Waco 9, N452, serial number 389, with a 1918 Curtiss OX-5 engine, was manufactured in May 1927. Knapp Flying Service of Ypsilanti, Michigan, purchased it and it then went through a succession of owners in the Midwest: James Foster of Lansing (1927); Otto Haskins of Battle Creek (1932); Lorne Dobbie of the same city the next year; Charles Smith, Tecumseh (1935); Albert Exline, Dayton, Ohio (1941); Paul Pfoutz, Dayton (1944); Walter Alpiger, Louisville, Kentucky (1959); Robert Gehrig, Fort Wayne, Indiana (1961); and Marion McClure, Bloomington, Illinois (1960).
McClure flew the Nine until 1966, when flight-safety requirements at his airport restricted the use of aircraft without a tail wheel or brakes. Rather than modify the aircraft, he took it out of service. The original co-designer and company partner, Clayton J. Brukner, wishing to contribute a Waco to the Smithsonian Institution, purchased the airplane in 1972 for donation to the National Air and Space Museum. The paint scheme is a non-factory scheme. The aircraft is currently at the Museum's Paul E. Garber Restoration and Storage Facility in Suitland, Maryland.
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Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
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Waco UIC

Manufacturer:
Waco
Materials:
Welded steel tubing with fabric cover
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 10.12 m (8 ft. 3 in.)
Height: 2.6 m (8 ft. 6 in.)
Length: 7.67 m (25 ft. 2 in.)
Weight, Empty: 785.5 kg (1,690 lbs.)
Weight, Gross: 1,268.4 kg (2,800 lbs.)
Top Speed: 224 km/h (140 mph)
Engine: Continental W-670-6N, 210 hp
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Date:
1931
Credit Line:
Gift of J. A. Masek
Inventory Number:
A19791420000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
1930's general aviation biplane; red and silver-gray.
Summary:
The 1933 Waco UIC is a classic cabin aircraft design from the golden age of aviation. Its stable construction provided forgiving flight characteristics and moderate performance. Throughout its entire development, the Waco cabin series remained almost identical in its basic configuration with yearly upgrades of engines, streamlining, equipment, and creature comforts, similar to the auto industry, which kept the price reasonable for prospective owners. As one of Waco's most successful styles, the UIC was popular as a corporate aircraft with famous names such as Jacqueline Cochran, Henry Dupont, and Gar Wood.
The aircraft in the NASM collection was the second UIC built, and went through a succession of owners on the West Coast. Its last owner restored the airplane in 1976 with new fabric and an engine overhaul, and used it in his oil pipeline business before donating it to the Museum in 1979.
Long Description:
By the late 1920s, Waco was already famous for its series of civilian open-cockpit biplanes, and so, in 1931, it decided to enter the highly competitive executive or commercial cabin class market. The competitors in this area were Bellanca, Stinson, Travel Air, and Fairchild, all of whom were already well established in this segment of the market. The 1933 UIC is one of Waco's successful cabin styles and is a classic cabin aircraft design of the golden age of flight era.
George "Buck" Weaver, Charlie Meyers, Clayton Bruckner, and Elwood Junkin formed the Weaver Aircraft Company in Lorain Ohio, in 1920. In 1923, they renamed it the Advance Aircraft Company and moved to Troy, Ohio. After Weaver's death in 1924, Bruckner and Junkin took over and produced the successful Waco 9, or Nine, soon followed by the Waco 10 and the Taperwing. In June 1929, they changed the name to the Waco Company.
The first of the Waco cabin airplanes was the 1931 four-place QDC cabin biplane. The UIC configuration was the same as the QDC but represented a major upgrade. The UIC cabin was a four-place cabin biplane powered by a 210 hp Continental seven-cylinder radial engine and a conventional fixed tail wheel landing gear. Automobile-type doors on each side provided entry into the luxuriously upholstered cabin, with two individual front seats and a spacious bench seat in the rear to accommodate two passengers. The airplane came equipped with a full set of flight and engine instruments and a wheel control yoke that could be swung from the pilot to the copilot position during flight. Improvements included more windows, more rounded lines and the addition of fillets and wheel pants. The original Model C ring cowl was also replaced with a full-length NACA bump cowl. These refinements, and the initial price of $6,000, made the UIC an immediate hit with a long list of prominent pilots of the era.
The Waco Company developed a model designation system that was worthy of a cryptographer. The first letter of the designation represented the engine, the second was the wing type, and the third, the fuselage type. The key to each letter hinged on whether the aircraft was a pre- or post-1930 aircraft, because the letter designations changed in 1930. There were about twenty-one engine designations and the wing designations were confusing. The UIC, built in 1933, was Continental-powered, Clark-Y wing, and custom, rather than standard or otherwise, equipped aircraft. There were also three-letter designations for open-cockpit aircraft and other models.
The UIC construction was typical for that era with welded steel tubing that was faired to a well-rounded shape by means of plywood formers and wood stringers. The wing was constructed of solid spruce spars with spruce and plywood ribs and aluminum leading and trailing edges. The tail assemblies were of welded steel tubing and the metal-framed ailerons were covered with aluminum. There were ailerons on both wings that were interconnected by push-pull struts that operated them in pairs. The main landing gear had oleo shock absorbers and the wheels were equipped with mechanical brakes. The entire airplane was covered with Grade A cotton fabric. The airplane was stable, with forgiving flight characteristics and moderate performance.
Waco produced 83 UIC models before it was replaced by the further improved UKC/YKC/CJC series in 1934. It was popular as a corporate aircraft with famous names such as Jacqueline Cochran, Henry Dupont, and Gar Wood. Throughout its entire development, the Waco cabin series remained almost identical in its basic configuration with yearly upgrades of engines, streamlining, equipment, and creature comforts, similar to the custom of the auto industry. Thus, because the initial quality and design were retained, the price remained reasonable. During the late 1930s and early 1940s, the Waco cabin plane faced stiff competition from the Beech Staggerwing, the Gullwing Stinson Reliant, and the newly developed Howard DGA, but Wacos held their market with style. Production of all Waco civilian aircraft was halted in 1942 because of due to wartime production.
UIC NC13062, serial number 3715, completed on March 20, 1933, was the second UIC built. It had a vermilion fuselage with the engine cowl, vertical tail, wings, and horizontal tail finished in silver. The registration numbers were finished in black. An Alameda, California, distributor first sold the airplane to Frank K. Jackson of Oakland, and it then had a series of west-coast owners. The last owner, John A. Masek of Casper, Wyoming, used it his oil pipeline business. Masek restored the aircraft in 1976 with new fabric and an engine overhaul before donating it to the Museum. Two of Masek's pilots, who were used to flying the aircraft at 500-foot altitudes over pipelines, flew the aircraft from Wyoming to Andrews Air Force Base in two days, arriving on December 5, 1979.
As delivered to the Museum, the airplane is not equipped as it was originally built. Besides a different paint scheme, it has had some modification of the cabin area, which includes a change in the rear cabin window arrangement, different upholstery, and an updating of the instrument panel. A smooth engine cowling from a Cessna Bobcat trainer encircles the engine instead of an original bump style cowling, and the modern strobe light installed on top of the vertical fin is not original.
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National Air and Space Museum Collection
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
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Waco Primary Glider

Manufacturer:
Waco
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 11.0 m (36 ft)
Length: 6.4 m (21 ft)
Height: 3.0 m (10 ft)
Weights: Empty, 101 kg (225 lb)
Gross, 203 kg (450 lb)
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Credit Line:
Gift of Robert Rindler, Sr.
Inventory Number:
A19690195000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
Wood and fabric; 1922 glider; silver, simple construction; primary.
Summary:
The Waco Aircraft Company announced the Waco Primary Glider in 1930. The firm planned to sell these gliders and capitalize on America's newfound enthusiasm for the sport of gliding and soaring. A flight in excess of four hours by the German pilot, Peter Hesselbach, near the beach at Cape Cod in 1928 had ignited a feverish interest in motorless flight.
Waco designers created a glider of very conventional design and construction except for one notable feature-they made the open, truss-frame fuselage from welded steel tubes rather than wood. Spruce wood parts formed the wing and tail, and fabric covered both of these assemblies. Waco offered to ship the aircraft complete, but disassembled, to anyone willing to pay $385. A bungee cord, auto, winch, or aircraft could launch the glider, and once airborne, a pilot could expect the machine to take off and touch down at 32 kph (20 mph) and to glide 4.2 m (14 ft) horizontally for every 0.3 m (1 ft) of altitude lost. The airspeed could not exceed a maximum of 105 kph (65 mph).
American enthusiasts bought about 300 Waco Primaries before a high accident rate among novice glider pilots forced the Assistant Secretary of Commerce, Clarence D. Young, to make sweeping changes in the regulatory framework governing gliding operations and glider pilots, and pilots of powered aircraft used to tow gliders aloft. By 1931, the fad had passed and projected sales failed to occur.
Long Description:
The Waco Aircraft Company announced the Waco Primary Glider in 1930. The firm planned to sell these gliders and capitalize on America's newfound enthusiasm for the sport of gliding and soaring. A flight by the German pilot, Peter Hesselbach, near the beach at Cape Cod in 1928 had ignited a feverish interest in motorless flight. Manning the controls of a Darmstadt D-17 sailplane, Hesselbach had plied the salty air above the dunes for more than four hours and thrilled and amazed a crowd gathered below him.
Waco designers created a glider of very conventional design and construction except for one notable feature-they made the open, truss-frame fuselage from welded steel tubes rather than wood. Spruce wood parts formed the wing and tail, and fabric covered both of these assemblies. A combination of external flying wires and wires built inside the wings added strength to the airframe. The landing gear of most Waco Primary Gliders consisted of a curved main skid made from Hickory wood and fixed to the bottom of the fuselage, plus smaller skids made of welded steel tubes and fastened to each wingtip. A single small strut with a rubber tire and wheel sometimes complemented the main skid. The wheel allowed ground handlers to more easily maneuver the unwieldy glider. Waco offered to ship the aircraft complete, but disassembled, to anyone willing to pay $385, and the aircraft would arrive ready for assembly and rigging. A bungee cord, auto, winch, or aircraft could launch the glider, and once airborne, a pilot could expect the machine to take off and touch down at 32 km/h (20 mph) and to glide 4.2 m (14 ft) horizontally for every 0.3 m (1 ft) of altitude lost. The airspeed could not exceed a maximum of 105 km/h (65 mph).
Waco management promoted the airplane by publishing brochures that spoke glowingly of both the ease and excitement of flying gliders:
"For real thrills and keen fun, gliding has it all over ski-jumping or surf-riding or similar sports. That's why there is such keen interest in it-why Young America and his Dad both are getting all excited about it. Gliding has become quite the thing to do….Taking it gradually and by easy stages, you can soon be going aloft 500 feet or more to circle around and make precision landings with the best of them. You get everything [from the flying experience] … the thrill of flying… the "feel" of the controls… Get your group together, form a Glider club…divide the cost of the Glider…and you're all set! Get into the air! It's great!"
American enthusiasts bought about 300 Waco Primaries before a high accident rate among novice glider pilots forced the Assistant Secretary of Commerce, Clarence D. Young, to make sweeping changes in the regulatory framework governing gliding operations and glider pilots, and pilots of powered aircraft used to tow gliders aloft. By 1931, the fad had passed and projected sales failed to occur. Robert Rindler, Jr., of Greenville, Ohio, donated his Waco Primary Glider to the National Air and Space Museum in 1968.
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National Air and Space Museum Collection
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
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Hattie Meyers Junkin Papers, 1906-1982 (bulk 1920-1933)

Creator:
Junkin, Hattie Meyers 1896-1985
Subject:
Brukner, Clayton J 1896-1977
Weaver, George E. "Buck" 1895-1924
Junkin, Elwood J (Elwood James) 1897-1926
Barnaby, Ralph S (Ralph Stanton) 1893-1986
Weaver Aircraft Company
Advance Aircraft Company
Waco Aircraft Company
Physical description:
3.27 cubic feet (3 records center boxes) (1 20x24x3 flatbox)
3.12 linear feet
Type:
Publications
Collection descriptions
Scrapbooks
Correspondence
Diaries
Photographs
Place:
United States
Date:
1906
1906-1982
bulk 1920-1933
Topic:
Aeronautics
Women in aeronautics
Aeronautics, Commercial
Gliding and soaring
Periodicals
Local number:
XXXX-0171
Notes:
Other type of material: printing block
Hattie Meyers Junkin (1896-1985) was an aviator and observer of a number of historical events. Always interested in aviation, in 1917 she married George "Buck" Weaver ( -1924), a civilian flying instructor at the military training center at Waco, TX. Weaver, along with Clayton Bruckner and Elwood "Sam" Junkin, founded the Advance Aircraft Company in 1921 (Weaver Aircraft Company, 1922-29; Waco Aircraft Co., 1929-1946). Following Weaver's death she married Junkin ( -1926), but he died shortly afterwards and control of Weaver Aircraft slipped away. In 1929 she married Ralph Stanton Barnaby (1893-1986), a glider pilot and aviation pioneer. In 1931 she became one of the first women to earn a glider class C license and attended the University of Washington (DC) studying law, although she was unable to take the bar exam. In 1940 she moved to Garden City, NJ, where she remained until moving to Alabama in the late 1970s. She spent much of her life writing, including articles on Weaver Aircraft
Summary:
This collection consists of the personal papers of Hattie Meyers Junkin. The material consists of correspondence, scrapbooks, and manuscripts, as well as material on Junkin's husbands and Weaver Aircraft Co
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
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Additional Online Media:

Waco Model W Aristo-Craft Drawings Collection, 1947

Creator:
Waco Aircraft Company
Subject:
Waco Aircraft Company
Physical description:
5.03 cubic feet (1 slim legal document box) (4 legal document boxes) (55 rolled drawings)
Type:
Drawings
Collection descriptions
Place:
United States
Date:
1947
Topic:
Waco W Aristocraft
Aircraft industry
Airplanes
Aeronautics, Commercial
Aeronautics
Local number:
1998-0015
Notes:
In 1947, twenty-five years after the construction of their first aircraft, the Waco Company of Troy, Ohio unveiled the unconventional Aristo-Craft or Model W. This four-place, high-wing cabin monoplane featured a 215 hp Franklin air-cooled engine, semi-retracting tricycle landing gear and a tail-mounted propeller in a pusher configuration. Only one was ever built and the aircraft did not receive an Aircraft Type Certification. The Aristo-Craft was the last aircraft produced by Waco
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
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There goes a Waco! : an American classic aircraft / by Joe Balmer and Ken Davis

Author:
Balmer, Joe
Davis, Ken
Subject:
Waco Aircraft Company History
Physical description:
viii, 76 p. : ill. ; 22 x 29 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1992
C1992
Topic:
Waco airplanes--History
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Visitor Tag(s):

Waco, symbol of courage & excellence / by Fred O. Kobernus

Author:
Kobernuss, Fred O
Waco Aircraft Company
Subject:
Waco Aircraft Company History
Physical description:
v. : ill. ; 28 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
United States
Date:
1992
C1992
Topic:
Airplane factories
Aeronautics, Commercial
Aircraft industry
Call number:
TL671.28 .K75 1992
Notes:
"Published as part of the 'Aviation heritage library series'."
Vol. 2 published by Mystic Bay Publishers, Destin, FL
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
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"One-two"; the story of the fifth national air tour as related by the winner, John H. Livingston ..

Author:
Livingston, John H
Waco Aircraft Company
Physical description:
31, [1] p. illus. (incl. ports., map) 22 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1930
[c1930]
Topic:
Aeronautics--Flights
Call number:
TL540.L55 A3X
Notes:
Contains advertising matter
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
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Waco aircraft production, 1923-1942 / produced by Raymond H. Brandly ; edited by Bonnie Jean Borisch

Waco airplanes manufactured by Advance Aircraft Co., Troy, Ohio
Author:
Brandly, Raymond H
Borisch, Bonnie Jean
Brandly, Raymond H
Waco Aircraft Company
Subject:
Waco Aircraft Company
Advance Aircraft Company
Physical description:
120 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 28 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1986
C1986
Topic:
Waco airplanes--History
Call number:
TL686.W3 B727 1986
Notes:
Rev. ed. of: Waco airplanes. 1st ed. c1979
Cover title: Waco airplanes manufactured by Advance Aircraft Co., Troy, Ohio
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Visitor Tag(s):

Waco airplanes : "ask any pilot" : the authentic history of Waco airplanes and the biographies of the founders, Clayton J. Brukner and Elwood J. "Sam" Junkin

Author:
Brandly, Raymond H
Subject:
Brukner, Clayton John 1896-1977
Junkin, Elwood J (Elwood James) 1897-1926
Waco Aircraft Company
Advance Aircraft Company
Physical description:
213 p. : ill. ; 28 cm
Type:
Biography
Place:
United States
Date:
1988
C1988
Topic:
Waco airplanes
Aircraft industry
Call number:
TL686.W3 B727 1988
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Visitor Tag(s):

The authentic history of Waco airplanes and the biographies of the founders, Clayton J. Brukner and Elwood J. "Sam" Junkin

Author:
Brandly, Raymond H
Subject:
Brukner, Clayton John 1896-1977
Junkin, Elwood J (Elwood James) 1897-1926
Waco Aircraft Company
Advance Aircraft Company
Physical description:
163 p. : ill., ports. ; 29 cm
Type:
Biography
Place:
United States
Date:
1979
C1979
Topic:
Waco airplanes
Aircraft industry
Notes:
At head of title: Waco airplanes, "ask any pilot."
Data Source:
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
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Frankfort TG-1A (Cinema)

Manufacturer:
Frankfort Sailplane Company
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 14.1 m (46 ft 3 in)
Length: 7.1 m (23 ft 2 in)
Height: 1.5 m (5 ft 1 in)
Weights: Empty, 227 kg (500 lb)
Gross, 417 kg (920 lb)
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Credit Line:
Gift of Lewis University, Romeoville, Illinois.
Inventory Number:
A19830113000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Summary:
Stan Corcoran's TG-1A (Training Glider Model 1A) was the first aircraft selected to train U.S. Army glider pilot cadets to fly the Waco CG-4A combat assualt glider. The Waco could be difficult to handle with heavy loads, and a skilled pilot was required to fly it. Until late in the war, Wacos were only produced in limited numbers, and none were available for training. Before bidding on producing the TG-1A, Stan Corcoran had produced gliders for the civilian market at his Frankfort Sailplane Company factory. In May 1942, the firm won a contract to build 40 TG-1As. Production began immediately, and the order was completed by November 1942. Each glider cost $2,775 to build but Corcoran's factory lacked the resources to quickly produce large numbers of gliders. The Schweizer Aircraft Corporation easily built many more TG-2 gliders, a design similar to the TG-1A. By war's end, nearly 1,100 dedicated military training gliders were completed.
Long Description:
Military gliders came into use during World War II as a means to leapfrog natural and man-made barriers and deliver combat troops and equipment deep into enemy territory. Troops that deployed in gliders tended to reach the ground in a more concentrated group than airborne troops that jumped from cargo airplanes wearing parachutes. Soldiers scattered across a wide area could not concentrate their firepower and were difficult or impossible to communicate with, and these limitations greatly reduced their combat effectiveness. Gliders could also carry light artillery or small vehicles directly into a landing zone to support paratroops (soldiers deployed by parachute) or glider-borne infantry. The primary U. S. Army combat glider was the Waco CG-4A. This glider could be difficult to handle with heavy loads and a skilled pilot was required to fly it. Until late in the war, it was only produced in limited numbers and none were available for training. To train army cadets to handle the big Waco, the army urgently needed a training glider that was easy to build and handled well in the air. The first aircraft selected for this role was a glider designed by Stan Corcoran, the TG-1A (Training Glider model 1A).
U.S. Army planners realized the potential of a glider-borne assault force after German commandos, aboard DFS 230 gliders, landed atop and captured the Belgian fort of Eben Emael in May 1940. The American army began to develop programs to design and build assault gliders, and train crews to fly them. But American industry was under tremendous pressure to expand production, and create and field new weapons. The national military leadership was forced to assign priorities and they ranked gliders well behind fighters and bombers. Henry H. "Hap" Arnold, commanding general of the Army Air Forces (AAF), declared that glider contracts could be awarded only to civilian manufacturing firms not already committed to military aircraft production. The AAF contacted eleven companies and invited them to submit glider designs for 2-, 8-, and 15-man gliders in March 1941, but only four returned bids: Bowlus Sailplanes, Inc, St. Louis Aircraft Corporation, Waco Aircraft Company, and the Frankfort Sailplane Company.
Before submitting his bid, Stan Corcoran had produced gliders for the civilian market at his Frankfort Sailplane Company factory. He was well known among competition glider pilots, and in the late 1930s, he had started small-scale construction of his Cinema I single-place glider in Frankfort, Michigan. Civilian interest in gliding was growing at a steady pace and Corcoran's company soon relocated to larger facilities in Joilet, Illinois. When the request for military gliders came out, Corcoran responded with a two-place training glider design, essentially a Cinema I with provision for another pilot. Corcoran also attempted to win contracts for production of the 8- and 15-man cargo gliders. However, during tests, Corcoran's prototype, 8-seat cargo glider, the XCG-1, suffered structural failure at only 63% of its design load strength, and Corcoran was advised to stick to designing light training gliders.
On May 26, 1941, the Frankfort Sailplane Company received a $5,784 contract from the AAF for three prototypes of a two-place glider designated XTG-1. This was the first contract issued for a U. S. training glider. The new design, soon to be called the Cinema II or Corcoran Model B, consisted of an additional tandem seat in a stretched cockpit. Other changes included a fixed horizontal stabilizer and elevator in place of the all-moving stabilator on the Cinema I. Stall speed was only 59 km/h (36 mph) and the never- exceed speed was calculated at 130 km/h (80 mph).
Corcoran welded together pieces of steel tubing to form the TG-1A fuselage and wings and covered them with cotton fabric. He constructed the horizontal and vertical stabilizers from wood, and he installed plywood spoilers on the upper wing surface. The pilot could increase the glider's rate-of-descent by approximately .8 m/s, or 150 fpm, using the spoilers. The tandem cockpit consisted of two canvas seats equipped with dual flight controls and instrumentation, and covered by a multi-pane, plexiglass canopy. A hinged section of the canopy gave access to the front seat, a small, quick-release door on the right side of the fuselage allowed access to the rear seat. Instrumentation consisted of an airspeed indicator, altimeter, rate-of-climb indicator, turn and bank indicator, and compass, duplicated for both front and rear seats. A single radio was included in the front-seat position.
Landing gear consisted of a single wheel and tire (fitted with a brake) installed on the bottom of the fuselage, behind the leading edge of the wing, and a wooden skid with rubber shock absorbers placed in front of the wheel. A small tailskid protected the fragile rudder and vertical stabilizer during ground handling.
In May 1942, the Frankfort Sailplane Company received a contract to build 40 TG-1As. Production began immediately and the order was completed by November 1942. Each glider cost $2,775 to build but Corcoran's factory lacked the resources to quickly produce large numbers of gliders. The Schweizer Aircraft Corporation easily built many more TG-2 gliders, a design similar to the TG-1A. By war's end, nearly 1,100 dedicated military training gliders were completed.
The expense and casualties involved in the U. S. combat glider program during World War II raise questions about its ultimate value. Operations in Europe achieved mixed results and heavy casualties. However, in Burma, combat gliders proved very useful in placing troops and equipment behind Japanese lines. After the war, the glider force was abandoned and eventually replaced by the more versatile and cost-effective helicopter. All training gliders, such as the TG-1A, were declared surplus and offered for sale to the public. Sport gliding resurged when these cheap gliders flooded the market but this also forced most glider manufacturers, including Corcoran, into serious financial difficulty.
More than thirty years after combat glider pilots trained in it, Stan Corcoran donated a TG-1A to Lewis University in Illinois. An aircraft structures class at the University fully restored the aircraft and test flew it as a class project. Lewis University donated it to the Smithsonian Institution in 1983. The glider is painted in the blue and yellow colors specified for training aircraft during World War II.
See more items in:
National Air and Space Museum Collection
Location:
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Chantilly, VA
Hangar:
Boeing Aviation Hangar
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
Visitor Tag(s):

Jordan (Richard D.) Aircraft Drawing Collection

Creator:
Jordan, Richard Dedrick
Physical description:
.75 cubic feet (1 mapcase folder)
Type:
Scale drawings
Collection descriptions
Date:
1958
1958-1960
Topic:
Beachey Monoplane (Eaton-Beachey Tractor) (1915)
Corben Super Ace
Curtiss F11C-2 (BFC-2) Goshawk
Curtiss Robin Family
Aeronautics
Curtiss P-40F Warhawk
Fokker D. VII
Ford 5-AT-C Tri-motor
Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat
Messerschmitt Me 109 J
Mooney M20 Mark 20
RAF S.E.5
Snow (TX) S-2B
Waco UDC
Waco UMF
Local number:
2002-0042
Notes:
Richard Jordan was an professional aeronautical engineer and as a hobby he produced a number of aircraft scale drawings
Summary:
This collection consists of the following scale aircraft drawings executed by the donor, Richard Jordan: Beachey Monoplane (1915), Corben Super Ace (1934), Curtiss F11C-2 Goshawk (1933), Curtiss Robin OX-5 (1928), Curtiss P-40F Warhawk, Fokker D. VII (1918), Ford 5-AT-C Tri-motor, Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat, Henderson Longster (1933), Messerschmitt Me 109J, Mooney Mark 20 (1954), Royal Aircraft Factory S. E. 5 (1917), Snow S-2B (1958), Waco UDC (1931) and Waco UMF (1934)
Cite as:
Jordan (Richard D.) Aircraft Drawing Collection, Accession 2002-0042, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
Visitor Tag(s):

Franklin "Texaco Eaglet"

Manufacturer:
Franklin Glider Corporation
Materials:
Steel-tube fuselage covered with lightweight cotton "glider cloth," wooden wings covered with glider cloth.
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 13.7 m (45 ft)
Length: 6.4 m (20 ft 11 in)
Height: 2.5 m (8 ft 4 in)
Weights: Empty, 136 kg (300 lb)
Gross, 227 kg (500 lb)
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Credit Line:
Gift of the Texaco Company.
Inventory Number:
A19310039000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
High-wing, glider with strut-braced wing; steel-tube fuselage and wooden wings covered with cotton fabric.
Summary:
As America endured the dark days of the Great Depression, the glamorous exploits of dashing aviators offered escape from the bleak prospects of economic disaster. One intrepid pilot, Frank Hawks, flew a glider called the Franklin "Eaglet" across the United States during an unprecedented stunt that enthralled the nation.
Long Description:
As America endured the dark days of the Great Depression, the glamorous exploits of dashing aviators offered escape from the bleak prospects of economic disaster. One intrepid pilot, Frank Hawks, flew a Franklin PS-2 glider across the United States during an unprecedented stunt that enthralled the nation. The saga began in 1928, when R. E. Franklin, a mechanical engineering professor at the University of Michigan, and his brother Wallace, discovered a student glider club building a German Zoegling (primary) training glider. The Franklin Brothers realized that an improved Zoegling had the potential to become a popular glider in the Unites States, and they quickly set about constructing their own version. At this time, no domestic glider manufacturers existed. American interests in motorless flight lagged far behind Germany, the nation that began the sport gliding movement during the early 1920s. The Zoegling design was sound. It could withstand the stress of taking off in tow behind automobiles or powered aircraft so the brothers concentrated on modest aerodynamic and structural refinements. With no previous glider experience, Wallace Franklin successfully flew the improved Zoegling in 1928. He was towed aloft behind a car but a short time later, a windstorm destroyed this aircraft.
The next Franklin glider, dubbed the "9491," incorporated several new modifications based on experience flying the first glider. The most significant change involved the landing gear. The Franklins mounted a single wheel and tire in the lower fuselage behind the pilot, in place of the wooden skid used on the original Zoegling. The brothers retained a smaller skid mounted on shock absorbers ahead of the wheel. This device prevented damage to the nose during landing and also functioned as a brake, and it became a standard feature on most American sport gliders during the next two decades. During the latter half of 1928, the Franklins flew "9491" at several air meets held in New York state. Wallace Franklin demonstrated some of the first successful glider tows behind powered aircraft in the United States. "9491" scored another 'first' when renowned German gliding enthusiast, Wolfgang Klemperer, flew this airplane on tow behind a Goodyear blimp. Most gliders before 1930 took to the air behind groups of young men pulling bungee cords hooked to the glider. Auto tows did not come into use in the United States until 1928. Aircraft tows took gliders much higher than other towing methods and eased the problem of transporting the bulky but fragile aircraft to new flying sites. Previously, a group of enthusiasts disassembled the glider, loaded it on a trailer, and hauled the machine by road to a new airfield.
Frank M. Hawks was just beginning to catch the gliding bug when he saw "9491" perform at the Detroit Glider Carnival in 1929. An Army pilot during World War I, Hawks earned a reputation after the war piloting high-performance, powered aircraft (the press occasionally dubbed him the "fastest human") and he held a number of speed and distance records. At the National Air Races in Cleveland, he flew the Franklin glider in the "Famous Motored Pilots' Glider Derby." Hawks won the contest and had completed arrangements to buy the glider when a student pilot ripped off the wings in a crash that destroyed "9491" but not before it had generated considerable interest in the sport of gliding. Before the Hawks flight, Ameila Earhart had flown the glider and narrowly escaped serious injury when she entered a spin and managed to recover from it just above the ground. Ironically, Earhart had met Hawks almost a decade earlier when he took her aloft for her first airplane flight.
When "9491" was still impressing crowds around the country, R. E. and Wallace had begun building another glider to continue the process of refining the basic Zoegling design. They offered this aircraft to Hawks who accepted immediately and oversaw its completion. Hawks' employer, the Texas Company (or Texaco), was also interested. The firm endorsed Hawks' participation in non-motorized flight because it saw the sport as a compelling means of attracting people to aviation. Company officials believed that glider pilots would eventually move to flying powered aircraft fueled and oiled by Texas Company products. Hawks was the superintendent of the Texas Company's aviation division, and he purchased the new aircraft using company funds.
Before the brothers completed the new Franklin glider, Hawks and the Texas Company had devised a spectacular stunt to stoke public interest in both motorless and powered flight. Hawks planned to fly the glider coast to coast, in tow behind a Waco Ten biplane. During the flight, the glider would land several times a day, and at every airfield, Hawks would meet with dozens of reporters.
Construction on the new glider moved rapidly. The brothers used three steel tubes, welded and riveted at both ends, to form the fuselage, and added a brake to the main wheel. They constructed the wings of wood, covered them with cotton fabric, and braced supported by external struts. Both wings could be removed in the field for road transport. The basic instrument panel consisted of an airspeed indicator, altimeter, and slip/skid indicator. In fitting out the cockpit, it is clear that Hawks planned to spend a great deal of time there. Mechanics installed a radio receiver strictly for its entertainment value, and a telephone so that Hawks could communicate with the tow plane pilot. The cockpit was completely enclosed to protect the pilot from the wind and cold.
To finish the airplane, Hawks devised a gaudy paint scheme depicting a stylized eagle and topped off with the Texas Company logos. The Franklin brothers assigned the manufacturer's serial number 202 to this aircraft and it received the registration code 502M. Hawks christened it the "Eaglet" but the airplane was renamed the "Texaco Eaglet" after the transcontinental flight. The glider's never-exceed speed was calculated at 201 km/h (125 mph), and flight tests pegged the stall speed at 24 km/h (15 mph) and the glide ratio at 22:1. Total cost to manufacture the "Texaco Eaglet" came to $2,500.
Hawks planned carefully for the flight. A special tow rope, 152 m (500 ft) long, was selected and carefully tested. In an emergency, the rope had to break before the wings of the "Texaco Eaglet" or the Waco Ten tow plane. Both aircraft were also fitted with release mechanisms to jettison the rope. Hawks had to request an exemption from Department of Commerce rules governing aerial glider tows. The government had banned airplane tows after recent attempts to tug primary gliders ended with fatal results.
Hawks departed Lindbergh Field at San Diego on March 30, 1930. Towing Hawks and the "Texaco Eaglet" was J. D. "Duke" Jernigin, Jr., flying a Waco Ten biplane (named "Texaco No. 7" and registered NC608N) powered by a 220 hp Wright J-5 engine. Jernigin carried one passenger, Wallace Franklin. The group soon established a routine for the daily fuel stops necessary to sustain the thirsty J-5 engine. At altitude over the airfield, Hawks released the tow rope and performed a short air show routine for the crowds waiting below. Jernigin and the Waco had already landed and refueled. They sat at the edge of the field, ready to hook-up to the "Texaco Eaglet" and takeoff on the next leg of the trip. This routine kept ground time to a minimum for both pilots. This was important because the Texas Company had already scheduled the appearance of the glider and tow plane, and Hawk's solo air show, and large crowds waited impatiently at the next stop.
The demonstrations at Yuma, Arizona, and Phoenix went well but at Tucson, the tow rope snapped in heavy turbulence, during the takeoff on the morning of the second day and this mishap grounded the flight until the group found a replacement. On the third day, Hawks and Jernigin had to cover 1,143 km (710 miles) to make up the time. The pair stopped in Texas at El Paso, Midland, and Wichita Falls, flew on to Oklahoma City and Tulsa, and then landed in Missouri at Springfield and East St. Louis. Indiana came next and the flight stopped at Terre Haute and Indianapolis before continuing east to Columbus, Ohio, and Cleveland, then on to Buffalo, Syracuse, and Albany, New York. The flight ended at Van Cortlandt Park in New York City on April 6. Hawks landed in Midland, with a flat tire, and over Indiana, another tow rope broke and forced an unscheduled landing at Terre Haute. Heavy winds at Albany nearly caused the Waco to crash on takeoff but despite these additional setbacks, the flight managed to finish on schedule. The two pilots logged 44 hours of time in the air towing and flying the Eaglet during the eight-day trip and they covered 4,603 km (2,860 mile) and Hawks and the "Texaco Eaglet" amassed an additional seven hours of free flight aerial demonstration time. Adding to the spectacle of the trip, Hawks carried 5.7 kg (12.5 lb) of "glider" mail and a palm tree seedling given by the city of San Diego to the citizens of New York, New York. The Texas Company did earn some public relations benefit from the trip. Crowds of between 5,000 and 10,000 people witnessed each of Hawk's scheduled demonstrations.
Hawks continued to fly the "Texaco Eaglet" throughout 1930 at various exhibitions and meets, including the National Air Races in Chicago, and the National Glider Meet in Elmira, New York. The "Texaco Eaglet's" flew for the last time on December 8, 1930. "Duke" Jernigin towed the glider aloft from Bolling Field, south of Washington, D. C., during the official Smithsonian Institution donation ceremony. The "Texaco Eaglet" and "Texaco No. 7," the Waco tow plane, touched down simultaneously in front of Dr. C. G. Abbot, the Institution's Secretary, and he assumed official custody of the glider. Reporters inundated the ceremony and this event generated more publicity for the aircraft and the sport. The "Texaco Eaglet" was the first glider constructed after 1903 to enter the museum's collection. It had flown a grand total of 6,437 km (4,000 miles) and remained airborne for 570 hours during 50 flights. Frank Hawks continued to set point-to-point speed records and race aircraft such as the Travel Air Mystery Ship and the Northrop Gamma (see NASM collection). Hawks was killed in 1938 flying a Gwinn Aircar that many aviation experts considered a far safer aircraft than those that he normally flew.
Wallace and R. E. Franklin quickly sought to capitalize on the enthusiasm for gliding generated by Hawk's transcontinental flight. They immediately began producing the "Texaco Eaglet" design at their factory in Ypsilanti, Michigan, with some structural and manufacturing improvements, under the company designation PS-2. It sold for $675 and the trailer required to haul the aircraft by road cost an additional $78. They successfully marketed the PS-2 to schools and gliding clubs, using Hawk's flight in the "Texaco Eaglet" as a main selling point. The Franklin brothers were also instrumental in perfecting and promoting the towing of gliders by automobile. It became widespread in the United States during the 1930's and boosted the sale of the PS-2 because most other gliders of that day could not withstand the rigors of towing. The PS-2 also did well in competitions. At the first national gliding contest held at Elmira, New York, in the fall of 1930, Albert Hastings piloted a PS-2 and won the flight duration trophy after he stayed aloft for 7 hours and 43 minutes. Hastings won again the following year again flying a PS-2. This skilled pilot opened a gliding school at Elmira and his training fleet included the PS-2. The German gliding pioneer, Wolf Hirth, and American glider designer and flight instructor, Hawley Bowlus, also started a school using the PS-2 for flight training. The Franklin brothers built and sold well over one hundred PS-2 aircraft and for a time, it was the most popular training glider in the country. More advanced motorless aircraft soon appeared and replaced the PS-2 at American gliding clubs.
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National Air and Space Museum Collection
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
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Farman Sport

Manufacturer:
Henri Farman
Maurice Farman
Materials:
Wood and fabric monoplane
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 7 m (23 ft 3 in)
Length: 6 m (20 ft)
Height: 2.3 m (7 ft 6 in)
Weight, empty: 294 kg (649 lb)
Weight, gross: 462 kg (1,202 lb)
Top Speed: 140 km/h (87 mph)
Engine: Anzani 50 hp
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
France
Date:
1924
Credit Line:
Gift of Ken Hyde
Inventory Number:
A19820416000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
Single-engine light biplane
Summary:
In 1919, the H.& M. Farman Aeroplane Company of France produced the Farman Sport two-place sport and light commercial biplane. In 1922, C.T. Ludington and Wallace Kellett of Philadephia, Pennsylvania, formed the Ludington Exhibition Company as agents for Farman aircraft, and in 1923, they imported their first two Sports. Their pilot flew this aircraft, serial number 15, C-72, in the 1924 "On to Dayton Race," which included flying over the treacherous Allegheny Mountains.
After suffering severe damage in 1928, NC-72's airworthiness certificate was revoked and it languished for years in Pennsylvania and New Jersey until Ken Hyde of Warrenton, Virginia, restored it. C.T. Ludington himself identified the aircraft, allowing Hyde to reclaim the NC-72 registration. This is the last remaining Farman Sport.
Long Description:
In 1919, the H. & M. Farman Aeroplane Company of France produced the Farman Sport two-place biplane as a safe to fly civilian aircraft. The inexpensive Farman Sport was designed for sport and light commercial use and was intended to replace the obsolescent and inefficient war surplus military airplanes. It displayed excellent performance with the 50 to 60 hp engines.
The fuselage was a wire-braced all-wood structure covered with a thin wood veneer. The wing and tail assemblies were also of wood and were fabric covered. The biplane configuration was a wire braced single bay arrangement in which the top wing was attached to the fuselage with four vertical center section struts. The fuselage mounted lower wing was heavily staggered and was connected to the top wing with outboard "N" type interplane struts. The ailerons were located on the top wing. The available engine options were either the 50 hp Anzani radial or the 60 hp Le Rhone radial. The conventional main landing gear had the main wheels displaced forward of the normal axle center and had shock absorbing wooden skids placed aft of the main axle location. The purpose of this arrangement was to prevent nose-overs and to also provide a measure of braking during landings. These skids were an advantage for the skilled pilots during precision landing competitions in the days before brakes were installed on airplanes.
The Sport had one set of controls located in the front cockpit. In the interest of maintaining a favorable center of gravity position in both the solo and passenger carrying condition, the rear cockpit passenger seat was positioned so forward that the passenger's legs were straddling the sides of the pilot's front seat. This effectively eliminated the space where the rudder pedals would have normally been located. The few flight instruments consisted of tachometer, airspeed indicator, altimeter and inclinometer.
In 1922, C. T. Ludington and Wallace Kellett of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania formed the Ludington Exhibition Company to be the agents for the sale of the Farman airplanes in this country. In the spring of 1923, they imported their first two Farman Sport from France and hired Robert Hewitt to pilot then at various demonstrations and cross-country racing events in 1923 and 1924, including "On to St. Louis" national air race in 1923 and "On to Dayton" national race in 1924. Unfortunately, the selling price for the Sport was $4,850, a fairly hefty price for that era. While the supply of war surplus Standards and Curtiss Jennies was well past its peak by that time, they were still likely to be considerably lower in price than the asking price for the Farman Sport. In terms of performance, by 1926, Ludington was flying the Waco 9 in races instead of the Farman. Lack of Farman sales did not faze Ludington too badly however, because his real intent was to get involved in the emerging airline business. The Exhibition Company became Ludington Philadelphia Flying Service, Inc. and in 1929, Ludington Line airline service before it was sold to Eastern Air Transport.
The Farman Sport in the NASM collection was one of the two that the Ludington Company used for demonstration purposes. The aircraft was manufactured in 1923 with factory serial number 15 and imported to the United States, where it was later assigned registration number NC-72. This particular aircraft is powered by the 50 hp Anzani engine. The NC-72 flew from Philadelphia to Dayton in the "On To Dayton Race" in 1924, successfully negotiating fog and low ceilings over the Allegheny Mountains while sturdier aircraft waited out the weather. It was also entered in the National Cash Register Trophy Race in Dayton, however the landing gear collapsed and could not be repaired. By 1928, the airplane had been damaged by water and was dismantled; license NC-72 was cancelled.
Ludington sold the aircraft to Harry Newcomb with the admonition that the aircraft must be restored before any attempted flight. During World War II, Newcomb's son showed an interest in flying it and the elder Newcomb cut the aircraft into three pieces to prevent a flight. The Farman Sport remained in pieces near Washington's Crossing in southeastern Pennsylvania and then in New Jersey until 1966 when Ken Hyde, an antique airplane restorer, bought it. C.T. Ludington himself verified the two-seat fuselage as NC-72 and the FAA restored that number to the aircraft. Hyde began restoration on the aircraft and then sold it to R.W. Terhune and R.A. Stewart for further work. In 1978, Hyde bought the aircraft back and finished the restoration work. Hyde donated it to the Smithsonian in November 1982.
See more items in:
National Air and Space Museum Collection
Location:
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Chantilly, VA
Exhibit Station:
Pre-1920 Aviation
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
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Additional Online Media:

Kreider-Reisner C-4C Challenger

Manufacturer:
Kreider-Reisner
Materials:
Steel tube fabric biplane
Dimensions:
Wingspan: 9.1 m (30 ft)
Length: 7.1 m (23 ft 5 in)
Height: 2.8 m (9 ft 3 in)
Weight, empty: 650 kg (1,435 lb)
Weight, gross: 1,087 kg (2,400 lb)
Top speed: 209 km/h (130 mph)
Engine: Wright J-6, 150 hp
Type:
CRAFT-Aircraft
Country of Origin:
United States of America
Date:
ca. 1929
Credit Line:
Gift of Albert L. Redick II
Inventory Number:
A19860009000
Rights:
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Physical Description:
Off-white, black trim; Wright J-6, 150 hp single-engine, 3-place biplane.
Summary:
Amron Kreider and Lewis Reisner of Hagerstown, Maryland, built the Kreider-Reisner C-4C Challenger, a light and efficient biplane, as a replacement for aging Curtiss Jennys and Standards. Beginning in 1926, Kreider-Reisner built a series of three-place, open-cockpit aircraft that flew exceptionally well. The addition of a Wright J-6 engine made the design especially reliable.
In April 1929, Kreider-Reisner became a subsidiary of the Fairchild Airplane Manufacturing Company, which redesignated the C-4C Challenger line as the Fairchild KR-34. C-4s and KR-34s flew as sport aircraft, air taxis, and press planes, and in the 1929 National Air Tour. This C-4C was built during the parent company transition period and carries the Challenger designation. It flew with many owners and is restored to reflect its association with North Penn Airways.
Long Description:
The Kreider-Reisner C-4C Challenger was part of a family of biplanes developed by the Kreider-Reisner Aircraft Company of Hagerstown, Maryland, to satisfy the need for a lighter and more efficient all-around aircraft that would replace the aging Jennies and Standards of the immediate post World War I era. Contemporary competition for Challenger series included the Waco 9/10s and Alexander Eaglerock.
Amron Kreider and Lewis Resiner co-founded Reisner Aero Service Inc., in 1925, as a fixed base operation (FBO) that operated a flying service and repaired and rebuilt airplanes. Their desire to have a better airplane resulted in the formation of the Kreider-Reisner Aircraft Company, in 1926, and the development of the Challenger series of three-place, open-cockpit biplanes starting with the C-1 and culminating with the C-4C. The principal differences between the various airplanes of the Challenger C series were the engines used in them. The C-1 and C-2 had 90 hp inline Curtiss OX-5 engines. The C-3 had a 110 hp 7-cylinder Warner Scarab radial, the C-4A had a 130 hp 7-cylinder Comet radial and the C-4C had a 165 hp, 5 cylinder Wright J-6 radial. As the series progressed there were other refinements such as split axle landing gear, and better aileron balance.
In April 1929, the Kreider-Reisner Company became a subsidiary of the Fairchild Airplane Company, which then re-designated the C-4C Challenger design as the Fairchild KR-34C. The airplane established a solid reputation as an efficient and reliable performer that flew exceptionally well and had no bad habits. Mrs. Keith Miller, a noted woman pilot of the era, entered one in the 1929 National Air Tour and placed 8th in a heavily competitive field of entries. Another C-4C/KR-34C was used as the official press plane for the Air Tour. The C-4C was popular as an air taxi and as a sport aircraft, too. The recently expanded plant in Hagerstown produced a number of the C-4Cs before sales were severely curtailed by the stock market crash in late 1929. To sell off the existing inventory, the company resorted to various sales ploys and modifications such as seaplane conversions and adding guns for military applications. Approximately 60 examples of this versatile airplane were built.
The C-4C airplane configuration was a conventional strut- and wire-braced three-place open-cockpit biplane. The fuselage was built of welded steel tubing and faired to shape with wood fairing strips. The wings were constructed with solid spruce spars and built-up plywood ribs with the ailerons located only on the lower wings. The tail was made up of welded steel tubing and included an in-flight adjustable horizontal stabilizer trim and a ground-adjustable vertical fin. The entire airframe was fabric covered with the exception of the removable metal engine access panels. The front cockpit was equipped with a door for ease of passenger entry and egress and was also equipped with removable dual controls. The landing gear comprised a conventional main gear and a tailskid. The engine was a five-cylinder 165 hp Wright radial that was equipped with a Hamilton Standard ground adjustable fixed pitch aluminum propeller and a hand-cranked inertia starter.
The C-4C airplane in the museum's collection is manufacturer's serial number 384 and registration number N30M. It was manufactured in August 1929 which was several months after Fairchild acquired the Kreider-Reisner Company, however the data plate reflects the Kreider-Reisner C-4C Challenger designation, rather than the subsequent Fairchild KR-34 label. The airplane had 15 registered owners prior to its acquisition by NASM. Interstate Flying Corporation of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania owned the aircraft until 1933. Rising Sun Aircraft School of Philadelphia bought it and sold it in 1934 to what was to become the first of a long string of owners, including North Penn Airways, that ranged from Florida to Maine. Two of the previous registered owners were women, Katherine Markwell of Washington, D.C. (1938-1942) and Joan A. Kulp of Spotsylvania, Virginia (1963-1964). Records show that while under the ownership of William R. Carter of Anacostia Station, D.C., the airplane made a forced landing on January 26, 1944 due to engine failure damaging the left lower wing, the engine mount, and the propeller.
A retired Air Force officer, Bud Williams of Madison, Indiana, acquired the aircraft in 1977 and meticulously restored the airplane to its original configuration. He decided to finish it in the off white with black trim and block lettering colors of North Penn Airways where it had been used it for an air taxi and charter service. Williams offered the airplane to NASM in 1983, based on a barter arrangement, but before the transaction could be consummated, he decided to sell it to Albert Redick of Reno, Nevada in 1984. Redick subsequently offered it to museum and on December 5, 1985, and John Slack flew it to Washington. D.C. With him was Linda Reisner Bracey, the daughter of Lewis Reisner, the co-founder of the Kreider-Reisner company. The airplane is presently located at the Museum's Paul E. Garber Restoration and Storage Facility in Suitland, Maryland.
See more items in:
National Air and Space Museum Collection
Location:
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Chantilly, VA
Hangar:
Boeing Aviation Hangar
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum
Visitor Tag(s):

John Miller Collection, 1910-1973

Creator:
Miller, John Matthew 1896-
Subject:
Miller, John Matthew 1896-
Johnson, Robert Woods
Pitcairn (Pitcairn-Cierva)
Pitcairn Aviation
Pitcairn Autogiro Co, Inc
New Brunswick (NJ) Aero Club
Miller Corp (John Matthew Miller) (Aircraft manufacturer)
Kellet Autogiro Corp
Physical description:
0.90 cubic feet (2 legal document boxes)
Type:
Financial records
Collection descriptions
Correspondence
Clippings
Pamphlets
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Logs (records)
Place:
United States
Date:
1910
1910-1973
Topic:
Burgess Aircraft Family
Autogiros
Aircraft industry
Airplanes
Aeronautics, Commercial
Aeronautics--Societies, etc
Aeronautics
Pitcairn PCA-2 Autogiro
Miller Corp MCA-1 Amphibian Biplane
Kellett Autogiro Family
Pitcairn PA-3 Orowing
Waco 10 Family (Aircraft)
Local number:
2001-0036
Notes:
John Matthew Miller, born in 1896, was the President of the Miller Corporation, New Brunswick, NJ, at the New Brunswick Airport (also known as "Miller's Field" ). Miller Corporation provided a flying school, flew passenger flights along the mid-Atlantic seaboard and offered sightseeing tours. Miller received his commission as an ensign in the Naval Aviation Corps in 1918 and afterwards worked as an air mail pilot. His company's first attempt at building and flying an amphibious aircraft was halted when it crashed during its first landing. After his company failed, Miller continued to be active in the aviation community and held a number of different positions, including being the president of the New Brunswick (NJ) Aero Club, an autogiro pilot for Pitcairn, and serving as a helicopter test pilot at the Patuxent River test station during World War II. He later worked for the Department of Agriculture until 1956
Summary:
This collection consists of: one photocopy of Miller's 1926-1943 Flight Log Book; one photocopy of Miller's 1943-1954 Flight Log Book; one photocopy of a scrapbook containing newspaper articles, contest rules for the New Brunswick, NJ, Aero Club Flying Trophy, Miller's 1917 acceptance letter to the Massachusetts School for Naval Air Service, a letter recognizing one year of service to the US Aerial Mail Service in 1919, articles pertaining to Miller's 1918 commission as an ensign in the Naval Aviation Corps, and a promotional pamphlet for the Kellett Autogiro; 33 copied photographs and photocopies of Grand Central Airport, Glendale, California, autogiros, and early Burgess flying boats; the Saga of the US Air Mail Service book; "Flying Officers of the U.S.N. (US Navy): 1917-1919"; Miller's certificate for promotion to Lieutenant in the US Navy; an article written by Miller, "Dual Spray Equipment for Airplane Spraying Tests" from March, 1951; one share of common stock, owned by Miller, of the Aero Club of New Brunswick, New Jersey, Inc.; several newspapers dated from 1924 to 1969, several covering James G. Ray's autogiro flight over Washington, DC in 1934; map (no date) showing the flight route and distance from Bellefonte, PA to Cleveland, OH; a 1922 log book for the Curtiss Seagull owned by the Chicago Tribune; an "Autogiro News" newsletter from 1933; a short biographical blurb on Miller from the "Story of Flight A: 1917-1919" (note from donor); several loose sheets of Miller's figures on the operating costs of a Pitcairn cabin autogiro, and a breakdown of the marketing needs and possibilities; correspondence between John Miller and Robert Woods Johnson (of Johnson & Johnson) concerning autogiros; photocopies of Miller's 1930 Pilot's License and his 1945 Certificate of Satisfactory Service from the US Navy; a program for the Hadley Field (South Plainfield, NJ) Commemoration in 1973; 27 scrapbook pages from The Miller Corporation, New Brunswick Airport, containing photographs of the hangar and facilities, the Pitcairn Orowing, Waco 10, and the flying boat built by the Corporation in 1929; and 22 loose original photographs, including two of the Flight A Naval Aviation detachment at M.I.T. in 1917, photographs of the model and actual flying boat (Miller Corp MCA-1 Amphibian Biplane) the Miller Corporation built, and Miller with a Pitcairn PCA-2
Data Source:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
Visitor Tag(s):

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