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  • Studebaker airplanes...

    No, I don't think Studebaker made planes (though it and Packard certainly made engines...
    including a Packard Diesel aero engine tested in the 30s) rather, I was wondering if Studebaker had any corporate aircraft?
    If so, could someone (Mr. Quinn, I'm guessing) post photos?
    Thanks.

    63 Avanti R1 2788
    1914 Stutz Bearcat
    (George Barris replica)

    Washington State
    63 Avanti R1 2788
    1914 Stutz Bearcat
    (George Barris replica)

    Washington State

  • #2
    Stude did "assemble" some of the radial engines as used in some B-17 and other 3400cu.in. radial engined planes.

    Don't know about whole planes.
    Locomotive engines and cars, refridgerators, radios...etc.

    Mike

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, Stude made thousands of Wright R1820 nine-cylinder radials for use on (mainly) Boeing B-17s, and they also owned a charter airline for a short period, but JBoyle's asking about Studebaker-owned executive transport planes...which is a very interesting question...I've never heard tell of any such "flying boardrooms" owned or operated by our favourite carmaker. Were there any? If so, I'd be tempted to execute a painting of it/them...

      (BTW, the "1820" in "R1820" is the cubic inch displacement of that engine type; similarly the Rolls-designed Merlin V12 built by Packard was designated V1650, displacing 1650ci. The "3400ci" ref intrigues me...what engine's that?)

      S.

      Comment


      • #4
        http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...Terms=airplane



        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA

        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA

        Comment


        • #5
          This is from the Ft. Wayne Journal-Gazette dated Thursday, December 10, 1942





          Leonard Shepherd
          http://leonardshepherd.com/

          Comment


          • #6
            But, OF COURSE, Studebaker made airplanes - the Aerobile! In fact, these were powered by the 218 cu in Dictator straight 6 engine, which was later known as the Commander 6 (226 and 245 cu in). The wings came off once you landed and you could drive it like a car.

            I wrote an article about this a few years ago in the Ocean Bay Chapter's Studegram. Here's a PDF of the article and some pics.

            http://www.studegarage.com/studegram/mar07/aerobile.pdf

            Studebaker also owned Trans International Airlines in 1962-64, sold to them by Kirk Kerkorian. They sold it back to him in 1964. See details on p. 199 of "How to be a billionaire" (Google it).

            They also flew an Avanti around the country for its debut in a C-119 or something like that, as I remember, though they didn't own that plane. Was that in Turning Wheels?



            [img=left]http://www.studegarage.com/images/indy/gary_indycar25_vvsm.jpg[/img=left] Gary Ash
            Dartmouth, Mass.
            '32 Indy car replica (in progress)
            '48 M5
            '65 Wagonaire Commander
            '63 Wagonaire Standard
            web site at http://www.studegarage.com
            Gary Ash
            Dartmouth, Mass.

            '32 Indy car replica (in progress)
            ’41 Commander Land Cruiser
            '48 M5
            '65 Wagonaire Commander
            '63 Wagonaire Standard
            web site at http://www.studegarage.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Right, forgot about the Arrowbile/Aerobile...but JBoyle's initial question was, did Stude have any corporate aircraft for executive travel? I'm thinking perhaps not, but would be pleased to be wrong on that score!

              S.

              Comment


              • #8
                quote:Originally posted by Steve T

                Right, forgot about the Arrowbile/Aerobile...but JBoyle's initial question was, did Stude have any corporate aircraft for executive travel? I'm thinking perhaps not, but would be pleased to be wrong on that score!
                I would guess so. My dad worked for a small plywood company in Central Wisconsin in the 1950's. That little company had two corporate airplanes. A Beechcraft G18...



                and a Navion...



                Without a whole lot of scheduled air service out of South Bend (especially in the 1950's), I'd be surprised if Studebaker didn't have 2-3.

                Dick Steinkamp
                Bellingham, WA

                Dick Steinkamp
                Bellingham, WA

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks Dick, that was indeed what I meant.
                  Knowing corporate aviation of the 50s, I'd guess they probably had a Beech 18 like the one you showed, and perhaps one or two singles as well. The Beech 18 was THE biz-plane to have back then, and the fact that some were available (as C-45s, AT-7s, AT-11s and Navy SNBs) war surplus didn't hurt their popularity.

                  If photos exist, it will be easy to check if "N" numbers are still active. Who knows, some might still be out there.

                  And garyash is corrcet, Studebaker did hire a C-82 (the earlier sibling to the more sucessful C-119) to fly Avantis around the country for dealer introductions. The latest Avanti magazine (published by AOAI) has a nice story on that effort.

                  63 Avanti R1 2788
                  1914 Stutz Bearcat
                  (George Barris replica)

                  Washington State
                  63 Avanti R1 2788
                  1914 Stutz Bearcat
                  (George Barris replica)

                  Washington State

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yes, Studebaker did own a corporate airplane. I saw reference to it in the archives a few years ago. I believe it even had a photo and specifications but they were not copied down.

                    I know when I visited with D. Howard (of Howard aircraft) in San Antonio during the SDC/ASC Intl. meet in Austin in 1998 he mentioned that he had rehabed the plane Studebaker used in the late '50's or early '60's. D. was a multimillionaire custom airplane designer/builder (or maybe more accurately customizer) who loved cars especially Studebakers and Pierce Arrows. He had several. A little about his operation copied from a website:

                    See also:
                    http://www.airportjournals.com/Displ...?varID=0303004

                    He went on to do some remarkable (and remarkably expensive) custom jets for the Arabs in the 1980's and 90's.

                    He was a member of the ASC but I believe he has now sold most of his Studebakers.

                    Richard Quinn
                    editor: Antique Studebaker Review
                    Richard Quinn
                    Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If Dee Howard was involved it may have been a converted Lockheed Lodestar/Venturas (WWII armed variants of the Lodestar). Back in the 50s they were the "heavy iron" of the corporate aircraft world. Comparable to Gulfstreams bizjets today.
                      Howard did a sleek conversion called the Howard 500, he cleaned up the airframe, modernized the avionics, and put in a VIP interior. Bill Lear (of later Learjet fame) did something similar called the Learstar.

                      Sadly, with heavy AVGAS consumption and being replaced by jets, very few Howards fly today.

                      I'd love to see a photo...anyone?

                      63 Avanti R1 2788
                      1914 Stutz Bearcat
                      (George Barris replica)

                      Washington State
                      63 Avanti R1 2788
                      1914 Stutz Bearcat
                      (George Barris replica)

                      Washington State

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Here's a Howard Ventura...



                        Dick Steinkamp
                        Bellingham, WA

                        Dick Steinkamp
                        Bellingham, WA

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I seem to remember that I read somewhere that Studebaker owned a DC-3.(?)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Studebaker made all the trim tab handles for Piper Cherokees.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              A Howard Lockheed? Ooooo...I like those. A lot.

                              Those came in three flavours: the Howard 250 was based on the L18 Lodestar transport, and retained that type's (potentially Studebaker-built!) Wright R1820 engines; the Howard 350 and Howard 500 were former PV-1 Ventura bombers, the latter version of which had Pratt & Whitney R2800s swinging big square-tipped four-bladers.

                              I'm picturing a customised polished-metal Lodestar with "Powered By Studebaker" and lazy Ss on the cowls...yum!

                              Here's an exec PV-1, possibly a Howard 350 (though there were other companies, including Bill Lear's, that also did conversions on the Lockheed twins); seen at MCAS Brown Field, Quantico VA, 1983.


                              And here's a Howard 500, seen at Anoka MN in summer 1999.


                              S.

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