PFM Logo Fokker Triplane Model T Curtiss Canuck

Volunteer Work Day

September 20, 2008

Reported by Tom Gaylord

The Houston crew obviously had other issues to concern themselves with so Houston representation was light. I know for a fact that Dave Miller still doesn't have power at his house in Pearland. There are several guys I have not heard from so I'm not sure how they are doing. We did have Doug Hortvet, Mike McCormick and myself at Kingsbury on Saturday. Other volunteers included Ted Dawson, Terry Bledsoe, Roger Ritter, Tom Miller, Carl Canga, Ron Marcotte, Al Sumrall, Sanford Swope, and I feel like I'm leaving someone out! I recall Jim Johnson dropped by in the morning, and Art Caballero just can't get enough of the place - he too made an appearance Saturday morning! There was also a new guy named Lynn Howell that came by... he knows a lot about Model T automobiles and vintage cars in general, but he says he's interested in the airplanes.He'll have to break away from Al first!!

I really don't remember who did what, so I'll mostly work through the list of events I am aware of. As usual I am somewhat light on "Team Vehicles" stuff, so Al may need to publish a supplemental report.

Memorial plate on cowling

First order of business was determining where to mount Dick Schenck's plate on the Fokker Dr.I Triplane. We'd always thought it would probably be in the cockpit, but the group decided it should go on the engine cowl, port side. This was mounted in place during the course of the day.

The group also decided to take vehicles and the D.VII to Lackland for the November 2/3 airshow. PFM will have a booth adjacent to the aircraft and vehicles. Of course, you've seen the D.VII lately, doesn't look like an airworthy bird! Terry jumped on reworking the engine mounts on a spare Ranger engine. The prop was dug out, and Ted started sanding and finishing the fibreglass nose bowl. As you can see from the photo the engine got mounted and the prop put in place. Ted made good progress on the nose-bowl, layering on another coat of filler and primer. The part needs more before final painting, however. The next challenges will be mounting machine guns, finishing the nose bowl, and locating the Ranger exhaust - stored somewhere on the property! And lets not forget general cleaning!

fitting temporary engine to Fokker D.VII

Mike McMains has completed the Indian fuel tanks so Lynn and Al started finishing those components. The tanks look gorgeous! It will be a definite treat to get the Indian running again!

Several guys, Doug Hortvet and Tom Miller among them, tried getting the Salmson radial engine on the Curtiss Junior to run. Without success, unfortunately! They did discover that the mag was stabbed 180 degrees out of sync, but even with that corrected it wouldn't fire. There is some suspicion that the cam timing may be off. Next time, maybe....

Carl Canga appeared to work on the building signage and made good progress on the Texaco sign. Not quite done though.

The final work project of the day was removing the engine from the Great Lakes! Roger had made great progress on recovering the wings and tail surfaces, making necessary repairs as he goes. The fuselage just had so much that needed to be done. The fuselage is stripped, and Roger has removed un-needed brackets and such. He plans on sand-blasting the fuselage structure and having it powder coated before rebuilding the fuselage. Anyway - quite a few guys helped to remove the engine and its accessories and mounts!