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The delicate science of aircraft preservation at the Smithsonian (Hagerty article)

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  • The delicate science of aircraft preservation at the Smithsonian (Hagerty article)

    I enjoyed this article and it contains many nice photos, so I thought I should share.
    Take a peek into the delicate science of aircraft preservation | Hagerty Media

    1919 Curtiss Jenny
    In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

  • #2
    Preservation over restoration, on all historic artifacts should be considered first before proceeding with a restoration or alteration. It makes sense on virtually every level. From esthetics, to serviceability, to comparative cost, it checks all the boxes. Howerever, it takes a commitment to the artifact, while setting aside the ego of the owner. It doesn't always work. Take the last remaining Boeing 307 Stratoliner, based on the B17, which was purchased by the Smithsonian in 1969, restored in Seattle, where it was built, then forced to ditch in Elliott Bay (Puget Sound) when the experienced crew ran out of fuel, salvaged and restored again, before being flown back to Washington DC and put on display. In that case the museum believed that restoration was the only route to proceed. This was an unbelievable commitment to the last of it's kind, especially when considering that the plane was built to fly, but may never fly again. As an aside I believe that most, if not all, of the engines are Studebaker built Wright Cyclones.
    Last edited by Hallabutt; 03-02-2021, 10:51 AM.


    • #3
      In the Spring of 1998 the Keystone Region Chapter did a weekend tour that included Mount Vernon and the Smithsonion Restoration Facility just outside D.C.
      At one point in our tour of the facility the guide was explaining something at one of the work stations, and I was leaning against a fuselage that was laying on the floor.
      Before we moved on, the guide identified the fuselage as the Enola Gay.
      "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

      Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
      Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
      '33 Rockne 10,
      '51 Commander Starlight,
      '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
      '56 Sky Hawk