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Air2air

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Registered: 09/15/07
Posts: 284
 #1 
10Tweaker mentioned on Neal's Candy Store thread about a Walter Soplata Collection in Newbury Ohio.  There is an excellent article here at Smithsonian Air & Space

I am still reading the details but for now here are pictures from a variety of sites.  The following pics are by no means complete: I can't yet find a full listing of what is there.

Thanks to Mike (10tweaker) for the heads up on this:



The prototype NAA EF-82E, NACA 133, 46-256, seen 1984 at Newbury; now in Minnesota under restoration by C&P Aviation.


Goodyear F2G-2, BuNo 88463, NX5577N, race #74, winner of the 1947 Thompson Trophy race flown by owner Cook Cleland. Last entered in a race at 1949 Cleveland NAR flown by Dick Becker but did not compete in final. Seen July, 1982, at Newbury, Ohio. Now in North Dakota for restoration for Crawford Museum, Cleveland.  This plane's history is here :


TB-25K 44-30129 "Wild Cargo", seen Newbury 1982. Sold to Steve Detch in Georgia; now flying again with Jerry Yagen's Fighter Factory collection at Virginia Beach VA:


USN P-80A/FO-1, BuNo 29689. Left the collection ca.1990 and is now on show restored at NMNA, Pensacola FL. That is Walter Soplata.


BT-13A Valiant, now in the care of WIXer Dan Jones in Alberta and number three in the rebuild queue behind Dan's Stearman and a Nanchang CJ-6A...Note in the rear view that there's a small tree growing up through the empennage of the Valiant, which had obviously been in the same spot quite a while.  Seen in 1984:


Curtiss O-52A that is now privately owned in the Midwest, longterm restoration to fly:


The second B-36 produced started as a YB-36. The first two B-36 featured a single tire main landing gear. Those tires were too large for airport runways of that day, so this aircraft was retrofit with a set of 4 tire main gear. This was the first B-36 with the dome style cockpit. This YB-36 was later converted into a production RB-36E, and used in the strategic recon role. It was retired to the USAF Museum in Dayton, Ohio, in the spring of 1957.
 
The USAF Museum moved to a new location in 1971. Rather than moving the B-36, a bomber variant B-36 was flown into Dayton to be displayed in the new museum. In fact, the museum building was constructed around that giant airplane. The USAF surplused the B-36 that was at the original museum. While the B-36 was slated to be scrapped, a farmer from near Cleveland named Walter Soplata purchased the B-36, and hauled to his farm. The cut-up B-36 has been sitting outside in the elements laying on the ground since that time. Mr. Soplata is very private, and rarely allows visitors or photos:


I'll be adding more pics as I come across them; or if any of you guys have some, please add.

 

 

Neal

Registered: 03/24/08
Posts: 25
 #2 

I think, with heavy emphasis on think that his son wrote a piece for Air and Space museum magazine in the last year or two. Nothing to meaty but an interesting enough story of growing up collecting those planes and the logistical challenges of getting them back to the compound.

Air2air

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Registered: 09/15/07
Posts: 284
 #3 

Air2air

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Registered: 09/15/07
Posts: 284
 #4 

 


 

RareBear

Registered: 09/10/07
Posts: 203
 #5 
There is a list of the Walter Soplata collection aircraft here

http://www.warbirdinformationexchange.org/wix/wixdownloads.html


Walt
Air2air

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Registered: 09/15/07
Posts: 284
 #6 
Thanks for that RareBear.

Question for you guys - I bet that given a choice, we would prefer a hulk from the desert for a project, as opposed to the rather damp ones here.  What shape is the aluminum in after 40 years in Ohio?  Is skin replacement all you would need, or does that region's weather really accellerate corrosion down into bulkheads and stringers as well? 


skyraider0609

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Registered: 10/08/07
Posts: 202
 #7 
Does anyone have a guess as to how many Vought Cutlasses still exist? That is one rare bird now, I think. What's happened to Walter's F7U?
RareBear

Registered: 09/10/07
Posts: 203
 #8 
The F-82 fuselage and wing shown inside the B-36 fuselage is now with Don Brooks in Douglas, GA, undergoing restoration. Since only one fuselage and one wing exists, he's reverse engineering the rest of the aircraft.

Walt
RareBear

Registered: 09/10/07
Posts: 203
 #9 

Seven out of the 320 F7U Cutlasses produced are known to have survived. More than 25% of these 320 aircraft were lost in crashes.

F7U-3 BuNo 128451
Located unrestored and incomplete at the Fred E. Weisbroad Aviation Museum/International B-24 Museum in Pueblo, Colorado. Its condition is poor.
F7U-3 BuNo 129554
Purchased by Len Berryman from Geiger Field, Washington in May 1958 and displayed outside the Berryman War Memorial Park in Bridgeport, Washington from 1958 until 1992. In June 1992 it was sold to Tom Cathcart of Ephrata, Washington for restoration to eventual flying condition. This aircraft is currently undergoing restoration at the Museum of Flight in Everett, Washington.
F7U-3 BuNo 129642
On display at the Wings of Freedom Aviation Museum at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. The aircraft belonged to Attack Squadron 12 (VA-12} and was flown to NAS Willow Grove in May 1957 to take part in an air show. Upon arrival the aircraft was stricken from active duty. It was given to the Navy Reserve as a ground training aircraft, and eventually placed as a gate guard in front of the base on US Route 611. The airframe has only 326.3 hours total time.
F7U-3M BuNo 129655
On display at the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola, Florida.
F7U-3 s/n 129685
Located for many years at the aircraft collection of Walter Soplata in Newbury, Ohio.[6] Like most aircraft on this famous farm the aircraft appears complete, though it is exposed to the elements and unrestored.
F7U-3 BuNo 129565
Was undergoing restoration for display at the USS Hornet (CV-12) Museum at the former NAS Alameda in Alameda, California. Has now been transferred to USS Midway (CV-41) Museum in San Diego, California for final restoration and display.
F7U-3 BuNo 128451
Also at USS Midway (CV-41) Museum in San Diego, California. May be restored for later display
ChrisBrame

Registered: 12/20/06
Posts: 79
 #10 

Earl Reinert's collection had an F7U forward fuselage, but I don't know whether it still exists - anyone know?

10tweaker

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Registered: 12/01/06
Posts: 579
 #11 
Can anyone put me in touch with either Tom Reilly or Don Brooks?  I Googled Reilly and found a number, but I didn't want to just call the guy outta the blue (without some kind of intro or at least a heads up) just to ask about the progress of the F-82...  Thanks.



Jim

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skyraider0609

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Registered: 10/08/07
Posts: 202
 #12 
Thanks for the rundown RareBear. That is one ugly loss rate. Just looking at the airplane, it doesn't exactly appear that it would have been alot of fun trying to trap with a rolling and pitching deck.....

Pete

RareBear

Registered: 09/10/07
Posts: 203
 #13 
I was at Don Brooks' place in Douglas the middle of October, and they were just beginning to dis-assemble the fuselage to see exactly what they had to deal with. It will be pretty slow going for a while.

Walt
TheWoodser

Registered: 05/04/07
Posts: 171
 #14 
Link to Micro$oft Live's current photo:

http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=qxbcg886ygfp&style=b&lvl=2&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=9377893&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1

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10tweaker

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Registered: 12/01/06
Posts: 579
 #15 
GREAT web link,  Woodser!!!


http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=32.192795~-110.888837&style=h&lvl=19&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=9069601&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1


http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=32.165595~-110.853263&style=h&lvl=17&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=9290953&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1


http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=32.167371~-110.838962&style=h&lvl=18&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=9294011&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1

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