As a young boy I grew up around airplanes... My Dad was a pilot and he learned to fly during WW2. He was a flight trainer and never did deploy overseas during the war. I grew up around airplanes of various types. My Dad became a Member of the Antique Aircraft Association and acquired the 1939 Rearwin Sportster 9000L. I can remember going with him to several Fly-in's and camping out at Ottumwa Iowa at the AAA Field for a week. I fell in Love with this airplane! Like a Piper cub it was simple... Easy to fly, Beautiful to look at! But with one difference. It had a Radial Engine. My job before we went flying was to grease the rocker arms then after landing was to clean the grease off of the fuselage. Many years after my Dad passed away and the airplane disappeared, I made a trip back to Ottumwa Iowa to retrace some of those early years. I found out who had my Dad's airplane and some early history of my Dad's exploits with it. The Plane had ended up in a Museum for several years... The Pearsons Air Museum. It now is owned by a Gentleman from Vancouver WA. and will someday fly again as it is in the restoration process. I hope to see it again someday... http://www.russellw.com/
I also found out my Dad had made a trip with several members of the AAA in their aircraft to retrace and reenact the Michigan Aeronautical Charter flight from back in 1929.
So now you may be wondering why I named this article "Wally". My Dads name Wallace so for a nick name he was called "Wally". I had always wanted a RC model of the Rearwin but no one made a kit. I looked to see if I could find a kit I could bash to make one... but no luck. So I started looking for plans. I finally found some plans in a Old copy of the AMA magazine. Taking these plans I was able to enlarge them to around a 48 inch wingspan. The plans were for a Balsa build but I really did not want another balsa built airplane. I had been doing Foam for several years and decided to combine the two together.
Foam former's with balsa stringers. This might work!
Powered by a Geared E-Flite 300 should work
It's starting to look like a airplane
Did I mention it has a Radial engine? Balsa, Hardwood dowels, some foam, parts cut from a soda can, and plastic soda straws.
The wings took awhile to get correct. Final wingspan came out to 52 inches.
Now what to cover it with? I tried using Monocote only to find it would not stick right and i was melting the foam parts... What to do? The plane sat in a corner for almost a year as I was discouraged. I finally pulled it out and dusted it off and decided I was going to finish it one way or another. So I stripped off all of the Monocote and repaired the damaged foam bits and pieces. Hmmm... what to use... Foam! It had been right in front of my face the whole time.
Now to make it look the part... Of course it was going to replicate my Dad's plane paint scheme. So on went the paint.
Looking at the plane I was not really happy with the Landing gear so after looking on the internet I finally found the gear from a Horizon Hobbies Eflite Super Cub.
I had to modify them a bit to fit but they came out great!
So... After about three years... "Wally" came to life and is now a tribute to my Dad. "Wally" has flown once but just a short hop. Not sure if I ever will really fly it as it means too much to me. Maybe someday it will end up at the AAA Museum in Otumwa Iowa and go on display there.
Looks pretty close, not perfect but just fine to me... "Wally"
Here's a short video of it running...
I hope you all enjoyed this trip through time with me and a few memories of my Dad... "Wally"