Friday, 25 January 2013

Golden Age Projects

Unfortunately I have very little progress to report on the Super Solution, I have managed to completely unpack the project, and it is currently standing by waiting for the Fuselage, Gear, and engine mount be completed, and then make its way to Canada.

Meanwhile it occurred to me that while I have not made a great deal of progress, some of my friends and fellow Golden Age racer builders certainly have.
I thought that anyone interested in following the Super Solution progress would also be interested in some of the other Golden Age projects currently underway:

GEE BEE  projects:

First Up, is the amazing Gee Bee QED, being built by Jim Moss. Jim has now completed most of the painting, and is in the final stages of assembly.

This is an incredible project, but without standing beside the aircraft it is hard to picture just how big this airplane is!

OK, so the QED never had this colour scheme, but it looks fantastic, and I am sure the Granvilles would approve.

Next, the Gee Bee R2 of Mac Transtrum. I was able to visit Mac a couple weeks ago, and view the current state of his project.

Mac has done all of the work on the Gee Bee himself, and his workmanship is first class. His welding, woodwork, and metalwork is beautiful and highly accurate to the original.
Mac also believes that fiberglass has no place in a Golden Age racer, and to date has completed a new set of aluminum wheel pants by hammering them into the same molds which Delmar Benjamin used over 20 years ago when he and Steve Wolf built their flying R2 replica.
Mac has made amazing progress in only 2 years so far, so it should not be too much longer until we see another R2 in the air.

Artwork in aluminum! only 40 hours of pounding, welding and filing separates these from a flat sheet of aluminum.

Below is the Gee Bee R1 of Harold Forth. I last saw this project in 2010, and at that time Harold had finished the fuselage, and was just starting on the wings, and tail.

Harold is also doing beautiful work, it seems that everyone who takes on a Gee Bee is a true craftsman.
I guess they have to be, there are no quick build kits available!

Yet another Gee Bee R1 well underway, by Lee Oman.

Lee is another all around master craftsman, welding, wood work, compound sheet metal, Lee is well versed in all of it.
As well as building a very accurate Gee Bee, Lee also races at Reno every year in the T6 class, so it should be an easy transition to take the Gee Bee around the pylons when finished.
(we will have to convince RARA that they should host a Golden Age class)

And to prove that there are other Golden Age racer projects out there beyond the Granville brothers designs, below is the just completed Mystery Ship of Richard Seeley.

I have followed this project from it`s beginnings, and it is a stunning example of the Mystery Ship, again no fiberglass was allowed anywhere near the aircraft!

Thats all for now, but I have details on quite a few other projects underway, including a Gee Bee Model Z, a Gee Bee model Y, and a Napier Heston racer!
All of the projects above are my constant motivation, I am amazed at the dedication shown by all the builders, and the level of craftsmanship exibited. Each project is a tribute to the original builders and pilots.
I had better keep some of the others in reserve, just in case I continue to make glacial progress on the Super Solution.