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Howard DGA -
Featured aircraft, c/n 748, N

Take me back to the Howard DGA page I just came from.

c/n 748, DGA-15P N9887H
U.S. Navy NH-1 BuNo 29423

This is quite an interesting Howard. The FAA registry shows N9887H as a Howard DGA-15J, which would have been built with a 330-HP Jacobs L6MB engine. However, I have the FAA file, which began the day it was sold surplus by the War Assets Administration, and neither the Registration or Airworthiness documents indicate that it was ever anything except a DGA-15P.

This aircraft was highly modified along the way, including the installation of a 600-HP, P&W R1340-AN1 engine, thus the different cowl as shown here. The wings were clipped at one time, too.

howard dga-15j_n9887h_navy_nh-1_n9887h_'&w_r1340_r-1340
Photo ID: N9887H_1
1967 was not a good year for ’87-Hotel. In January a 374-hour pilot with nine hours in type insulted her at Port Xenia Airport, in Ohio. The report says, “Right wheel sank in soft spot on new runway extension that was hard frozen at takeoff but had thawed.” In September then, a pilot hauling jumpers got quite a ride in Lynchburg, OH. The cabin door was off and excessive pressure in the cabin caused the plywood section of the fuselage top to separate from the aircraft. An off-airport landing was conducted and resulted in a hard landing which caused substantial damage. The report says it was “in flight, normal cruise.” Well - - I’ve never hauled jumpers but I’ve towed gliders enough to know that when you reach altitude, its “nose down and head for the ground for the next one.” Probably nobody but the pilot really knew how fast he was going when the excitement began!

May 1974 saw another event when the pilot received a brief checkout at Rainbow Airport, Franklin, WI. With six hours in the Howard he failed to maintain directional control; got a wheel into soft ground adjacent to the runway; and caused substantial damage. The feds cited “A lack of familiarity with the aircraft” as a factor.   

Okay, here’s some excerpts from the FAA files of 12/09:

In November 1946 the U.S. War Assets Administration sold Howard NH-1, cn748, Ident. No. 29423 to Earl Reinert and Gordon Horlick, of Arlington, Heights, IL, for $2,000. They registered it as N9887H. 7/48, sold to Charles D Linza of Kansas City, MO; 2/49 to Fred H. Maas of Downey, CA; 4/60 to Charles B. Gilbert of Hawthorne, CA, followed by a $1,700 mortgage; 7/50 to Jack B. Hardwick, Rosemead, CA; 9/50 to Jack Frederick Whalen, Van Nuys CA with a $1,200 mortgage; 3/52 to Morton Kamm, dba Lazy Mary Flight Service, Sherman Oaks, CA; 7/52 to Ronald W. Cronk and Orval G. Smith of Monrovia, CA; 4/53 to Worldcraft Sales Corp., Brackett Field, La Verne, CA;

7/55 to Shoemaker’s Truck Station, Montalvo, CA; 6/56 to Don Shoemaker, Ventura, CA for $3,124; 4/60 to W. A. Parchman, Garden City, CA; 12/62 to James S. Edge, Denver, CO; 11/64 to Dennis L. Hill, Pekin, IL; 11/66 to Green County Sport Parachute Center, Xenia, OH; 3/70 to Chuck Master dba Mountain Sport Parachute Center, Greely, CO; 2/73 to Central Missouri Parachute Center, Fulton, MO with a $6,000 security agreement; 6/74 to Frank H. Youngquist, Franklin, WI; 9/75 to William L. Catalina, Baton Rouge, LA; 2/76 to Warren C. Eaton, Ft. Collins, CO with a $14,000 security agreement; aircraft repossessed; 12/79 sold by bank to Bob Gilliam, Brighton, CO; 4/81 to Michael D. Smith, Denver, CO; 12/84 to Kevin T. Kennelly, Denver, CO and later Fort Lupton, CO;

Airworthiness: (This is an interesting one to scroll through!)
12/1/46, CAA ferry permit to Reinert and Horlick (below), from Woodward Field, Camden, SC to Chicago, IL; Such aircraft were ferried with their military serial number and no N-number. The ferry permit says, “After the flight the identification number assigned by your local inspector must be painted on the aircraft.”

4/47 337, “Modified from 3 place Navy trainer to 5 place personal plane. Removed 3rd set of controls and installed factory seat.”; 3/49 337, installed 2D30 with 6101A-21 blades; 12/50 recovered fuselage with Grade A; 4/53 recovered top of fuselage, and elevators; 4/53, aircraft total time 1112-hours; 4/56 recovered fuselage and all tail surfaces; 4/56 installed BT-13 cowling, and removed wing tips, resulting in gross weight reduction to 4300 lb.; 4/56, temporary Experimental certificate to test fly with tips off and new cowl; 12/56 installed something that is unclear to me: “The motor, gears, an chain were taken from a UC-78 Cessna. The larger gear is from the landing gear. Full travel of the jack screw takes 13 seconds”. (See 337. Any idea of what that was?)

7/57 installed airline type recliner chair; Experimental test flying for STC with R-1340 engine; 11/57, cowling modified per STC SA4-318; 6/58, installed R-1340-AN1 and 12D40-6101A-12 IAW STC SA4-528; 4/59, fiberglass engine cowl ring and metal side cowls installed IAW STC SA4-814; 4/63 removed right control wheel, door, right front seat and two rear seats, and installed safety belts for parachuting operations; 4/63 recovered fuselage and tail with Razor Back fiberglass; 8/70 recovered all but flaps and ailerons with Stits Poly-Fiber; 10/74 major wing repairs, replaced fin and rudder; covered with Ceconite; 3/86 major repairs to left wing including fabricating new rear spar; 11/90 complete rebuild of left wing.

This is a Paul Trask slide from EAA, Oshkosh 1975.
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