Now I've gone and done it....

Discussion in 'Classics' started by PTAirco, Mar 13, 2008.

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  1. Mar 13, 2008 #1

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    I have a long term project going (two seat biplane) and a light single seater for cheap flying round the patch about halfway done - what am I doing buying the remains of a Fairchild 24R!??!?!

    Yes, after not sleeping all night trying to talk myself out of it, I decided to pay the very reasonable asking price. I took a look at it at Flabob; as advertised it was a basket case - fuselage and landing gear fairly complete, only one wing (very bad) usable for patterns and hardware. Tail surfaces, struts, cowlings. No engine. But the fuselage alone looked good, almost all the stuff is there, including the wood (again, good for patterns). I love any airplane that has at least 20% of its empty weight in the landing gear and the Fairchild's is truly impressive! 6.50x 10 tires and the size of the tubing is mindboggling. This is an airplane the same gross weight as a 172, but it dwarfs the Cessna.

    I have never heard anyone say one bad thing about the 24's and the fact that Ranger engines are still out there to be had at almost reasonable prices finally swayed me.

    So if you have a barn full of 24R parts (maybe a right wing?) or any odds and ends that may be useful to me and useless to you, drop me a line.

    Pictures coming soon.
     
  2. Mar 13, 2008 #2

    Topaz

    Topaz

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    Well, nothing by half-measures, eh PT? ;)

    Congratulations on your new baby! Now where does this fit in the priority scheme? :)
     
  3. Mar 13, 2008 #3

    Dana

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    Are you a gentleman? Because the 24 is definitely a gentleman's airplane!

    Back when I had my T-Craft I shared a hangar with a Fairchild. After each and every flight, the owner and his wife got out the rags and cleaned all the bugs off the leading edges before closing the hangar doors. I felt like the hillbilly cousin with my ratty T-Craft.

    -Dana

    "The world that we have made as a result of the level of thinking we have done this far creates problems we cannot solve at the same level of thinking at which we created them." -- Albert Einstein
     
  4. Mar 13, 2008 #4

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    This will be on the back burner for a long time, while I gather pieces and information. I already sent away to the Smithsonian for all the drawings they have. This will be a keeper. I don't have any qualms about selling on a homebuilt if somebody really wants it and I'm ready for a new project, but this is a nice piece of aviation history (1938) and a fairly practical airplane to boot. If I never owned anything else again I'd be quite happy with it. Not that I'll ever stop doodling with new designs...
     
  5. Mar 13, 2008 #5

    Topaz

    Topaz

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    Sounds good, and glad to hear all of it. I'm looking forward to watching you fly that little single seater! (And the biplane, but one thing at a time! -grin-)
     
  6. Mar 14, 2008 #6

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    One reason I went for this that I spent 20-something years regretting selling on a similar project, a British Auster 6, which is basically an overgrown Taylorcraft. I thought that thing was built like a tank, but it's dainty compared to the Fairchild.
     
  7. Mar 14, 2008 #7

    Dana

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    Yes, the Auster is a neat airplane which always fascinated me as a T-Craft owner... but the F24 is positively elegant. Good luck with it.

    -Dana

    Why are there Interstate highways in Hawaii?
     
  8. Mar 14, 2008 #8

    bmcj

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    Congrats PT... I'm officially jealous. Is this perhaps the one that Ed Marquardt owned?

    Bruce :)
     
  9. Mar 14, 2008 #9

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    We're still trying to identify this one, since we still haven't found the data plate on it (yes, I know that's a whole other issue). Would be nice to know more of its history. Seems it spent it's life in dry climates , judging by the lack of serious corrosion. I'll be picking it up next week and getting some pictures up.
     
  10. Mar 14, 2008 #10

    RacerCFIIDave

    RacerCFIIDave

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    Very cool indeed...that will be a truly beautiful beastie when done...:gig:

    One day I will have the time and $$ to do an antique project...

    There is an immaculately restored C-170 for sale at my home field that I drool over daily...if I had a spare 44,000 it would be mine...lol

    Dave
     
  11. Apr 1, 2008 #11

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    Welcome to the Ranger factory

    Three engines in four days!

    Saturday I picked up a C-5 (200hp) from Apple Valley. A little incomplete, but it is the desirable late model.

    Sunday to Flabob to pick up the airplane; it only barely fits into the biggest U-haul, with about an inch to spare. I almost forgot those landing gear outriggers that really eat up your workshop space. And kneecaps.

    Monday a C-2 Ranger arrived from Massachusetts. At first glance, not much to look at, very corroded on the outside, but very complete, mags carb, manifolds etc. Then I saw dehydrator plugs in the spark plug holes which i took as a good sign. Apparently the owner had it re-built and never came back for it. Probably decades ago. I took off
    a few covers and peered inside and it looks very, very good. Even the gaskets appear new. As in, never seen service.

    Today; another C-2 from a PT19 I believe; almost complete firewall forward. It still ran a few days ago, used as a wind machine in an orange grove, so probably well-worn, but it gives me an original hand starter and oil cooler, baffles, extra cowling parts, oil tank and a prop hub etc. And some leads to investigate for more of them...

    As you can see, the shop is FULL!. Next project is to hoist those fuselages out of the way under my16' ceilings, via an electric hoist.
     

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    Last edited: Apr 3, 2008
  12. Apr 1, 2008 #12

    Topaz

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    Look at all those Ranger engines! :shock:

    You're going to have a beautiful airplane when it's finished, PT. Any luck with locating wings yet?
     
  13. Sep 16, 2014 #13

    59Manche

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    PT,

    Curious if you're making headway on your Fairchild? In the 90's there were two in our EAA chapter, one with the 200 Ranger and another with the Warner Radial. I think the airframe is a work of art. I remember passing the Warner (up close) in my Tri Pacer coming back from a flyout one afternoon, and the sight of it rocking in the light chop is burned into my memory as one of the most special things I've seen as a pilot. Made me feel like I was passing a time capsule, or like I was living a scene from a Richard Bach book.
     
  14. Sep 16, 2014 #14

    Pops

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    When I was about 65 years old I looked at a 37 Fairchild project. After looking at the project, I told the owner that I will pass on the project because I don't think I will live long enough to get it finished. He said that's the reason he is selling it. We were the same age. Dan
     
  15. Sep 16, 2014 #15

    Joe Fisher

    Joe Fisher

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    Me too!!!!!!
     
  16. Sep 17, 2014 #16

    PTAirco

    PTAirco

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    Alas, I passed it on to somebody who needes it more than I did, somewhere in Texas. Looking at it, it would have been a very very long term project and I had too much on my plate already.
     

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