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Airacobra of a different color

June 27, 2013 in Aviation

Just thought I’d add something different to the Airacobra love fest. Test pilot Tex Johnson won the 1946 Thompson Trophy Race at an average speed of 373.908 mph.flying this aircraft.

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Site AdministratorGuestProfile photo of Craig AbrahamsonCraig Abrahamson

10 responses to Airacobra of a different color

  1. Nice rendition, Jack….I read Tex Johnston’s book a while back (very interesting stuff).

  2. That’s more my speed Jack. The yellow really stands out. Well done.

  3. Gorgeous! Love that airplane, of course it sits on the stack waiting. You’ve done a great job on it.

  4. Like it Jack. What kit & scale is it?

  5. Very nice rendition of that kit, an excellent model.

    Tex Johnston was the first famous pilot I ever personally met. I was in 7th grade, and the Boeing 360 (the 707 prototype) came to Denver. My best friend and I convinced our parents to let us play hookey from school and we rode three buses across Denver to get to Stapleton Field (nobody’s parents would let them do that today!). The airplane was in a hangar with its tail sticking out, it was so big. We were peeking around the door at it when a big guy with a Texas accent and cowboy boots came up behind us and asked what we were doing there. Screwing up my courage I said “We wanted to see the airplane, sir.” To which he replied “Well you can’t see it from there.” He escorted us inside, and all kinds of people were very respectful to him, and we got a complete tour of the airplane including getting to sit in the pilot’s seats. Got home and was telling my dad about the stranger and his gift, when a story came on the TV and there he was being interviewed. My father, who knew aviation and knew who he was, was very impressed by my feat. That was back in the days when people knew aviation was a disease and the way you spread it was through close contact. You couldn’t do something like that today. I’ll always remember him as one of the nicest “airplane guys” I ever met. I read all about him, and did several model Cobras over the years. None quite as nice as this one though.

    • Back in the 1950s, lots of prototype airplanes came to Denver, the “mile high city” for their “hot and high” trials, which provided me a lot of opportunity as a kid to exercise my “aeronuttiness.”

  6. Tom…..I had no idea you were from my home town of Denver. Denver was beautiful in the fifties, cleaner air, less traffic and you could see the mountains everyday. Thanks for the nice remarks about the model. We used to go out to Lowery Field to look at all the T-33s lined up, and also attended the air shows at Buckley Field. I got my first airplane ride at a small air strip outside of south Denver in a Navion. My friend Don and I rode our bikes out there to look at airplanes, and a guy saw us and asked if we wanted to go up while he checked out his plane after it had been repaired. Never happen in this day and age,

    • Sooo… you remember when Buckley ANGB was Buckley NAS too eh? I remember seeing the Blue Angels there in 1955, their last year in Panthers, and seeing the Thunderbirds in F-84Gs at Lowry that year and in F-84Fs in 1956 when they opened the doors there to the first class of the Air Force Academy (just starting construction down in Colorado Springs at the time).

      Speaking of things that would never happen nowadays, my cub scout den got to go visit United Air Lines at Stapleton in 1953 (IIRC, I was 9 then) because one of the kids’ dad was a pilot for United. We got a tour and then the chief mechanic came up and told him there was a DC-6 that needed a check flight after an engine change. So all 12 of us were invited along on a *test flight*! He took us down around Pike’s Peak, then up along the Front Range to Long’s Peak, out around Fort Morgan and then back to Denver – and each of us got time in the co-pilot’s seat. No calling parents, no liability releases, no justifying it to the front office, no nothing. No way that would happen now.

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