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Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT       
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  Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT 
Author Message
Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 195
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 6:51 pm    Post subject: Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT Reply with quote

Back in 1983, while working at DuPage Airport, West Chicago (DPA), I had a meeting with this airplane. The owner/pilot at the time was Donald F. McDonald, Jr, and he was on his way to Oshkosh for the EAA fly-in when he stopped in at DPA for fuel. DPA is where that aircraft rolled out of the factory in 1943, and it was the plane's first known stop at its origin. Ironically, the pilot lost control landing and left the runway, shearing the left main and causing substantial damage to the engine area. I have photos posted with the call sign N88WT.

I learned from McDonald at the time that this plane was once owned jointly by 5 USAF officers, including Curtiss LeMay, at that time commander of SAC, as N4622N. It passed through other owners before McDonald acquired it in 1982. He was going to OSH to sell it because he said it was too much for him to handle. He ended up trading it as is for a freshly restored Cessna 140. 1983 was the last contact I had with him.

I never got the construction number or Navy Bureau Number, which is what I'm looking for now. If anyone knows what became of this plane, what its registration is now, I'd really appreciate this information.

Glenn

  Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT 
Author Message
Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 195
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 7:08 pm    Post subject: Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT Reply with quote

Never mind - I just found it! I have to remember what one can find by Google - I'm still sort of new at this stuff. Right after I posted this request, I thought about Googling "Howard DGA N88WT" instead of just "N88WT" and up came an NTSB report from 1994 where it sustained another gear failure, apparently from a bad weld (from the 1983 crash?). In that report I found the serial number, 782. So I googled "Howard DGA 782" and up came N115KB in Lakeland, FL! So now I can see if I can find the BuNo. from that information. I'm also going to repost N88WT photos under N115KB.

Glenn

   
Author Message
L-5jockey



Joined: 08 May 2007
Posts: 132
Location: East of PHL

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glenn

I believe the USN BuNo is 29457 for your DGA-15P (msn 782) impressed into Navy service as NH-1 ..
- from this batch: Bu.29376 thru 29550 Howard NH-1 Nightingale
DGA-15P (c/n 701-875) for US Navy

  Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT 
Author Message
Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 195
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:10 pm    Post subject: Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT Reply with quote

Hi L-5 Jockey,

Yep, I looked in my book, "U.S. Military Aircraft Designations and serials 1909-1979" to get the serial number list, then I took that list to Joe Baugher's site and cross referenced to his c/n list. BuNo 29457 was what I came up with.

Now the funny thing. I dug into my files that have been in a box in the basement for years and came across the article I wrote about this plane. I had interviewed McDonald the week of the crash because I found it ironic the plane crashed where it was built 40 years ealier. In that article I found that he had indeed given me the c/n! If I had only remembered that I could have saved myself some time!

I discovered more interesting info about the plane from my article, which was published in the DuPage Airport Authority newsletter, the Illinois Aviation Newsletter, the FAA Great Lakes Intercom newsletter, and an abbreviated version in the "Warbird Report" in the Jan. 1984 Air Classics.

I learned that after 300 hours of flight it was surplused and converted to civil use in 1946, being then registered as N4622N. As noted alreaday, for a period of time it was owned jointly by the 5 USAF officers. The plane's logbook showed it was sold to Lt. Tad D. Hammond (LeMay's personal pilot) in July 1955. It went through some more owners over the years and in May 1973, with 814 hours, it was practically rebuilt as N88WT. McDonald purchased in in August 1982. When he crashed it, the DGA had 1,031 hours on it.

Glenn

  N88WT 
Author Message
L-5jockey



Joined: 08 May 2007
Posts: 132
Location: East of PHL

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:23 pm    Post subject: N88WT Reply with quote

Interesting bit of history, and a little bit of deja-vu for the "bird", breaking the same leg twice!
I found and read the accident report, about the same time you did Confused

- John -
----------------------------------------------------------------------
No harm in posting it here, under fair-use...as our tax dollars paid for the report!

FTW95LA060

On December 3, 1994, at 1030 central standard time, a Howard DGA-15P, N88WT, was substantially damaged during landing at the Las Cruces, New Mexico, International Airport. The airplane, owned and operated by the commercial pilot, was on a local area dual instructional flight. There was no flight plan filed and visual meteorological conditions prevailed. Neither the pilot, the instructor, nor the two passengers were injured.

According to the owner, who had recently purchased the airplane, he was "acting as pilot-in-command." He and his flight instructor were doing touch and go landings on runway 30. He stated that during the last landing he touched down at approximately "60 miles per hour (MPH)." During the landing roll, at approximately 40 MPH, the "right main landing gear began to fail." As the gear began to collapse the airplane veered right and he and the instructor could not regain control using full left rudder and differential braking. As the airplane departed the runway, it spun 720 degrees before the right main landing gear collapsed. The flight had landed on runway 30 and the winds were reported as being 110 degrees at 4 knots.

An examination of the aircraft, by a Federal Aviation Administration airworthiness inspector, revealed that control continuity existed and the braking system operated. Inspection of the landing gear revealed evidence of pre-existing fractures in the gear structure.

   
Author Message
Doug Robertson



Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 651
Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple of comments-by 1943 which is year of manufacture of the subject Howard DGA-15P, Howard had earlier stopped civil production of the DGA-15s which had started in 1939 and was strictly building production in quantity for the US Navy under contracts. So this 1943 Howard could not have been impressed from a civilian owner. It was built in that cited series of BuNos for the Navy.

Howard stopped civil production of the DGA-15s in 1941. The civilian models had chrome fuel caps, the military models had painted fuel caps, among other changes. The NH-1 Nightingale instrument trainers had some navigation gear where earlier DGA-15s had the rear under back seat fuel tank. Later owners of the military models have welded up a larger rear fuel tank where the nav gear was. Other US Navy Howard DGA-15 variants were the GH-1s and the GH-2s. All were powered by P&W R-985 450 Hp Wasp Jrs. The GH-1 was a four seat personnel transport and the GH-2 was an airborne ambulance.

Lesser known were the civilian pre-war Howard DGA-15W with 350 Hp Wright R-760-E2 and the DGA-15J with 330 Hp Jacobs L-6. The -15P was the most popular and prevalent.

_________________
PP ASEL

  Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT 
Author Message
Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 195
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:05 pm    Post subject: Seeking info on Howard DGA-1/NH-1, ex-N4622N, ex-N88WT Reply with quote

Doug is correct in that this bird was not an impressment, rather it was built for the Navy.

I had only seen an abbreviated NTSB report. This one says it was the right main that failed, so the bad weld wasn't as a result of the DPA crash in 1983, because in that one it was the left main that was ripped off. This plane seems to have had its share of experiences!

Glenn

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