Welcome to the Texas Air Museum!
11 November 2013
The PT-26 safely arrived at the Museum on October 24, 2013, being flown in on a ferry permit from Casa Grande, AZ. Mike Delano, Ned Shannon and Malcolm Laing made the trip over with the Museum truck and trailer to Casa Grande to inspect the aircraft and determine the best way to get it to its new home safely. Linda and Gene Irvin were exceptional hosts for the crew during their stay and after a full day of inspection it was determined by Dave Goss of Gosshawk Unlimited that it was safe to be ferried back to Slaton. With Malcolm Laing flying the PT-26 and Mike Delano and Ned Shannon shadowing as closely as possible along the ground, the airplane is now safely in Slaton and will undergo a complete annual inspection.
14 October 2013
First I need to welcome to our two newest life members, Robert "Gene" Irvin and his wife Linda Irvin. I also get to thank them for their generous donation of a Fairchild PT-26, which is currently located in Casa Grande, AZ. It is painted in RAF colors, as it served in Canada during the war, in both No. 33 and No. 23 training squadrons. As you can guess, this means "Road Trip" to inspect it and arrange for either an annual or to truck it back. It was flying 2 years ago so we do not expect any problems, but we have learnt over the years not to assume anything. (Special thanks to Jack McGorray for use of his photograph of our new plane)
The T-6 has had several hours of test flight time with no major issues reported. We still have a few small items to finish, but those do not keep it from flying.
The Stinson 10a has had the front windscreen fitted, engine final mounted and we are working on the interior headliner and floors. Stripping the 7 layers of paint on the slats and fairings had been time consuming for the volunteers, but they look good when completed. Thanks to Jon Fleming and Randy Moore for their work on it.
The C-45 has had the DF loop test fitted and wiring in the aft fuselage and cabin area has begun. Cleaning the firewalls and tubing on the right side nacelle is underway, one good engine core has been purchased, it can be test fitted to assure the plumbing all goes in the correct location. One of the new volunteers, David Ryan, has been instrumental in getting the hangar cleaned up so that the C-45 parts can be located and laid out for cleaning.
Museum Members have attended several local airshows with the AT-19 and the Sonia having great crowd appeal. Thanks to Mike Delano and Randy Moore for flying them to them to the shows and giving tours.
Jon Fleming got recurrent in the L-2, but it is now down for its annual.
A big thank you needs to go out to Matthews Backhoe for the work they donated to remove the old concrete leanto floor. Corky Matthews who is one of the founding members and his crew were in and out in one afternoon, clearing the way for the new hanger and storage area that will now begin construction.
The fence repairs from the windstorm just before the airshow have begun, with the damaged poles being replaced and new fencing put in place. The north fence has been completed and the southwest fence area is waiting on the new hangar to be built so that the fence can but up against it.
Several other new volunteers, Brent Marshall and his daughter Gabby along with Richard Crawford have been a great help keeping the grounds and displays neat and well groomed this summer, without their help would not be looking as good for visitors as we should.
The Museum crew cab truck also has a new look following the windstorm. It was heavily damaged by a runaway cotton trailer and other debris but it has been repaired and a flatbed put on the back for more practical use. It also has the museum logo on the doors and looks sharp.
28 August 2013
It is with great sadness the Texas Air Museum has to report the loss of another member. Tex Edwards, a longtime warbird and cropduster pilot, was killed in a car accident Monday evening, August 26, 2013, while driving home. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and his friends across the country.
10 June 2013
I just want to send out a quick note about the air show to bring everyone up to date. The weather was near perfect, partly cloudy skies, 88 degrees with a breeze straight down the runway at 10-15 miles per hour. OUTSTANDING! Was the word heard from almost every person I visited with following the best attended show we have ever had. To Jason Newberg -Viper air shows, the jet car "Ms. Dmeaner" and the surprising motorcycle act, Bob Carlton, Tora, Scott Lane and Jeff Southern, the support of the Yellow Rose B-25 Squadron, High Sky Wing, and Dewline Squadron of the CAF, Tex Edwards and friends, Ramar Communications and Neal Aircraft, our other donors, the museum volunteers and I am sure several others that I have forgotten, THANKS for making it a great success.
On the Thursday night before the airshow the museum and the City of Slaton were subjected to winds exceeding 85 MPH as a large thunderstorm complex moved thru the area. Several hangers and buildings on the field suffered wind damage and the museum was no exception. The hanger doors on the flight hanger were blown in, causing no damage to the aircraft, but bending the upper support rails and damaging the doors themselves. Numerous volunteers spent the entire day working to clean up the debris and get the doors were they were serviceable, (we will have to get them properly repaired as soon as possible) and would not fall down during the show. Then, Friday night another large thunderstorm moved into the area and we all had to scramble to get the visiting aircraft under cover. We used every available spot on the airport and were able to provide hangar space for them all. (See the photo of "Yellow Rose" in the flight hanger) Several volunteers wanted to break the doors again so that we could keep her in Slaton, but were talked out of it. Our thanks to everyone that helped that night and lent us their unused hangar space.
Estimated attendance for the show was the best we ever have had (just under 9,000), which stretched our PA system past its limit. The Lubbock County Sheriffs that we had helping did a great job keeping traffic going as did the ladies taking the entrance fees, keeping the lines short and moving smoothly. The vendors were very happy, with three of them selling out of food. The visitors were great to, the trash after the air show was minimal, the only complaints being that some people on the south end could not hear the PA system.
It was really great to see so many T-6's on our ramp at one time! Our recently finished T-6 was on display and we had numerous complements on the quality of the interior restoration. We will send it for paint when we are sure we have everything just right.
22 April 2013
The T-6 has had one test flight with the gear retracted (See the attached photos of the flight.) and we are working our way thru the short squawk list. The Stinson 10-A has had the engine mounted and the wings mounted for a test fit, we will leave them on until after air show.
Air show meetings are now weekly until after the show, at 3 pm every Saturday. On April 27, we will have a burger and bean cookout before the meeting, please come!
See the attached poster below for air show details!
06 April 2013
We dotted the last "i" and crossed the last "t", and the T-6 is in annual! So, before the airshow meeting, with both Chris and Jamie Mills in attendance (they made a very pleasant surprise appearance!), the T-6 made its first flight since 1986, when a previous owner bellied it in with an engine failure. (See the attached photos of the flight.) The landing gear were left down for the first flight on purpose as a safety precaution. The T-6 will be finished in Navy colors after a few hours of shake-down flights. This will complete the 7 year total restoration of the T-6, as it is now airworthy. Stay tuned for 2013 airshow details!
19 March 2013
The Texas Air Museum regrets to announce that long time member and volunteer Jim Davis passed away today March 19, 2013, after a short illness following a stroke. Jim will be greatly missed, he was one of the original 10 members that opened the Texas Air Museum - Caprock Chapter in 1993. The Museum would not be what it is today without his help and guidance.
16 March 2013
We buttoned up the T-6 completely for the first time and checked the brakes one last time. The airplane then was taxied down to the end of runway 36 and successfully completed two high speed taxi tests (See the attached photos) The inspector has completed the inspection and is finishing the paperwork so that the first flight since 1986 should occur later this month. The T-6 will be finished in Navy colors after a few hours of shake down flights. This will complete the 7 year total restoration of the T-6 as it becomes the newest addition to the flying fleet.
The Stinson 10A will now be moved to center stage in the restoration hangar and work will commence to paint the wings, mount the overhauled engine and fit the interior.
Two P&W 985 engines have been located for the C-45, but we are still looking for two propellers. Only minor progress to report on the C-45, as the T-6 and center hangar have consumed most of the volunteers time for the past nine months.
The T-33 will receive the marking of the T-33 that Col. Jim Gibler flew as a Lt. in the Air Force T-33 demo team. Weather has been the only reason that this has not already been completed. The Air Force ROTC Cadets from Texas Tech have cleaned and begun to repaint the F-105, again weather has hampered our outside activities.
The last nine months have seen numerous volunteers and over a thousand hours spent in the middle building cleaning it up and preparing Korean War and Vietnam War displays. The final displays should be complete in the next few weeks and the only word I can use is stunning. It will be reopen well before the Airshow on June 8. Many thanks to the volunteers, Randy Moore, Chris Whiting, Mike Peterson, Brian Laing, Mike Delano, Dustin Delano, Steve Oldham, Mike Toney, Mark Hamilton, James Clark and anyone else that I missed.
Randy Moore also planned and completed the corner display in the main flight hangar which serves as a back drop for the Me-108 on display. Great job!
As noted earlier the weather, between funky winds or cold and snow, has been a little strange and has kept us from getting the aircraft out as often as we would like.
Airshow meeting are now every two weeks, the next meeting is March 23. Last meeting discussed fire and rescue, funding and pyro. Job assignments, parking and traffic control are on the schedule for the next meeting. As always, we encourage everyone to attend the meetings and help us continue our history of fun and safe airshows.
26 October 2012
We had a great turnout on Saturday, October 20, 2012 when the T-6 ran up and taxied down to the fuel pumps. What a difference it makes to see it moving under its own power! (See the attached photos) The flaps were checked and so was the prop, which both worked correctly, except the pressure gauge on the hydraulic system did not work. The brakes were a bit sticky so they will have to be inspected and adjusted, then we will be ready to have an inspector look it over for the annual, make any final adjustments and we will begin to close it up for flight. When the T-6 is finished and flying, it will be repainted in Navy colors.
The Stinson 10A wings were moved out of storage and inspected, along with getting the headliner and sound proofing material for the boot cowl.
The T-33 received a much needed facelift over the past 2 months with the help of numerous volunteers and the CAP and looks much better, thanks to all who participated. The Air Force ROTC Cadets from Texas Tech have begun to clean and repaint the F-105.
The past three months have seen numerous volunteers and hundreds of hours spent in the middle building cleaning it up and preparing Korean War and Vietnam War displays. While it is still in progress, many thanks to the volunteers, Randy Moore (who has done a fantastic job on the Quonset hut display), Chris Whiting, Mike Peterson, Brian Laing, Mike Delano, Dustin Delano, Steve Oldham, Mike Toney and anyone I missed.
A special thanks to Chris Mills needs to go out for all his work maintaining the website.
If you are out at the museum you need to stop in at the BOQ and see Mike Petersons Diorama of the B-25, it is stunning! Chris Whiting has continued to upgrade displays and the German Africa Corp display is worthy of special note.
Congratulations to Randy Moore who received his tail wheel endorsement in the L-2 last month.
22 August 2012
The Museum has set the date of the next air show as June 8, 2013. The air show meeting on July 21 had more great ideas put forward and a number of sponsors were announced. Specific areas that have been noted as issues in the past were discussed and plans laid out to address those items. The next meeting, which is on August 25, 2012 at 4 pm, will discuss the specific acts for the show and the early confirmations for some of the acts.
Volunteers Chris Whiting, Steve Oldham, Mike Peterson and Brian Laing painted short wall in the main display building for the Tirpiz display and Chris Whiting then completed the display which is awesome! The Africa Corp display was moved over to the main display building and other displays were updated.
An all hands project to paint the walls in the middle display building resulted in the main walls being finished and Volunteer Randy Moore has assembled the frame of the Quonset hut that will be on display in the Middle building. Randy and Brian Laing also headed up a tree trimming job the past few weeks that was way overdue. Thanks to both of them for their hard work.
Sandy Kimball donated a large used forklift which has already come in handy on several projects. Chris and Jamie Mills made their annual anniversary donation, which is greatly appreciated.
Construction of the storage hanger is on track to begin this fall and in preparation for it the old portable building on the southwest side of the exterior display yard was emptied and removed.
The electrical wiring on the T-6 has been completed and it has been test run a second time to check some additional instruments which were hooked up. The three bladed propeller was removed (it looked great, but the recurring AD was going to be a problem) and a freshly overhauled two bladed propeller was installed. The maywest assemblies on the leading edge have been installed and we are beginning to do the final adjustments to all the connections throughout the entire aircraft. While no date has been set for the first taxi, we are hoping for the middle of next month.
2 July 2012
UPDATE! Museum volunteers Mike Peterson, Malcolm Laing, and Brian Laing pulled the T-6 out of the hangar on Friday, June 29th and started its engine for the first time since beginning restoration. With Mike Peterson at the controls, the engine ran strong and clean for the short 5 minute test. Congratulations to everyone who has helped it get to this point!
26 June 2012
The Texas Air Museum had a great time at the bi-annual air show at Winston Field (KSNK) in Snyder, TX on June 16, 2012. A large number of warbirds were on the ramp, thanks in part to the help of the High Sky wing of the CAF. Also attracting a lot of attention was the pair of Spitfire mark 26's from Cisco.
The Museum had its first June 2013 air show meeting on June 23. A number of great ideas for the show were discussed, along with some specific things to clarify for the next meeting which is on July 21, 2012 at 4 pm.
Volunteer Jamie Mills has started her P-3 training for the US Navy, her husband (also a Volunteer) Chris Mills is now working in Alaska. Volunteer Mike Friedrich has begun the prep work to repaint the NA-64 in Casa Grande. Volunteers Chris Whiting, Steve Oldham and Brian Laing put up a short wall in the main display building to enlarge the Tirpiz display. Several other displays have been updated and refreshed, making a distinct difference in the appearance of those displays.
The Stinson 10A tail cone has been shipped off for rebuild; it is scheduled back the first part of July. The horizontal stabilizer is ready for silver, however it has really been too hot to set up the painting we need for the parts for both the Stinson and the T-6. The electrical wiring continues on the T-6, the list of things to do on it is getting much shorter.
The Museum also regretfully notes the passing of another long time Member, Bill Anderson. Bill, who had been a member for the past 15 years, passed away earlier this month in New York after a short illness. Our prayers go out to his wife and family.
31 May 2012
The Museum regretfully notes the passing of one of our long time members, Howard Pardue. Howard was killed in his F8f Bearcat on April 4, in Breckenridge, Texas. He will be greatly missed.
On Wednesday, May 16, Mike Friedrich and Ron Blanton drove over to the Museum from Casa Grande, AZ. Mike Friedrich and Malcolm Laing then flew the NA-64 back over to Casa Grande on Thursday while Ron Blanton drove back with the baggage and spare parts.
Mike Peterson has the canopy frames and new Plexiglas installed on the T-6, along with the right wing tip and leading edge cantilevers. The wobble pump was sent off for rebuild and has been reinstalled. The wiring continues to make progress, with thanks to Ned Shannon who has spent so much time on the electrical work.
The Museum had a distinct presence at the local gun show in April, with many new contacts and potential members coming by and visiting. Thanks go out to Steve Oldham and Chris Whiting for all their work putting that together.
The Stinson 10A tail cone has been shipped off for rebuild; it should be back the first part of July. The horizontal stabilizer has been covered and is ready for silver.
The Museum is looking for a P&W 985 Engine core so that we can begin plumbing the right side of the C-45. We had hoped to mirror the left side, but too many tubes and fittings were missing.
The AT-19 had a small problem with a spot where battery acid had leaked onto the fabric. This has been repaired and the annual should be signed off next week, in time for the bi-annual air show at Winston Field (KSNK) in Snyder, TX on June 16, 2012. Numerous warbird aircraft have been confirmed for the show, we hope you will consider attending; it should be a great time.
14 March 2012
The meeting on January 21 was highly successful, with multiple ideas being presented; a few of which have already been used and several more are being explored for implementation. Thank you to all who attended.
A special thanks to Chris Whiting for all his work in sorting the artifacts in storage and his work in the Korean war/Vietnam war display building.
The T-6 ailerons have been covered with Ceconite and taped, with the first 2 coats of clear butyrate brushed on. They are now ready for at least 3 coats of silver to be applied. The magneto wiring has been installed and fuel was placed into the tanks for a leak test. We are now ready for the final wiring and canopy glass installation.
The Stinson 10A fuselage has been painted with 7 coats of silver, three coats of white and 3 coats of either red or blue butyrate. Thanks go out to Mike Hauf, Steve Oldham, Randy Moore, Brian Laing, and Malcolm Laing for all their work. The airplane has been moved back to the maintenance hangar for fitting the interior and plumbing the firewall forward. Work began on covering the horizontal stabilizer and fitting the elevators, which have already been covered.
The C-45 has had the right rudder covered with Ceconite and the first 2 coats of clear butyrate brushed on. Thanks to Brian Laing for his help on that.
The AT-19 is undergoing its annual and the cowl has been repainted and the nose art is being applied. Mike Delano is the lead for the nose art, we are looking forward seeing the completed design on "London Nights".
Recent weather has kept the Museum aircraft grounded, but we are looking forward to a series of fly in's and air shows in the coming months to present the aircraft to the public. The Museum is sponsoring the bi-annual air show at Winston Field (KSNK) in Snyder, TX on June 16, 2012. "Tora" aircraft and an F8F Bearcat are currently confirmed for the show, along with numerous others. We hope you will consider attending, it should be a great time.
14 January 2012
The Texas Air Museum will hold a general meeting on January 21, 2012 to discuss ways to increase and stabilize the Museum's annual income. Our current methods, which have worked for the past 18 years, have been under strain due to the economy the past 2 years. Hopefully, the meeting will produce some new ideas that will enhance our funding. Please plan to attend!
The T-6 has been up on jacks for gear swings and flap testing. We encountered some problems with the plumbing which set us back for a few weeks, but the gear and flaps are now functional. Bill Parker has located a rear sliding canopy for us, which was the last major assembly we were missing. Ailerons are being covered and, weather permitting, should be installed by the first week or two of February.
The Stinson 10A fuselage has been the focus of more than a month of work as it has been covered with Ceconite and taped, with the first 2 coats of clear butyrate brushed on. It needs some reinforcing tapes around the doors and it will be ready for the 3 coats of silver to be applied. Thanks go out to Steve Oldham, Chris Whiting, Brian Laing and Malcolm Laing for all their work.
The C-45 has had the emergency escape door restored and test fitted by Mike Hauf, who is now working on the main fuselage access door.
The AT-19 is undergoing its annual and the cowl is being repainted so that nose art can be applied. Mike Delano is the lead for the nose art, we are looking forward to the final design on "London Nights". The L-2M "Tumbleweed" and Ki-51 are being flown on a fairly regular basis, with museum members building time and developing the skills necessary to move up to the next level for them.
19 November 2011
The Play Day was great fun and everyone who wanted a flight got one in the museum aircraft. We also hosted a flight for the Texas Tech Air Force ROTC cadets, with help from Brian Rose, Curtis Thomas, Tye Lane, Scott Lane and Malcolm Laing. One winning Cadet even got a ride in the T-28.
The T-6 hydraulic system is complete and awaiting final testing. The brake system is complete had has been tested. Electrical wiring is progressing nicely and we are beginning to see assemblies being adjusted and finalized.
The Stinson 10A has had most of the old paint stripped off and some minor dent repair completed. The head liner is ready to install and the vertical tail has been covered with fabric. The 0 time engine has been installed and covering the fuselage is the next major step.
The CAP cadets completed painting the F-101 and it now awaits the markings for final completion. What a difference they have made in the way the "Voodoo" looks!
Randy Moore has begun his checkout in the L-2M, Steve Sperry is working on a checkout in the Ki-51 and Mike Delano has been checked out in the NA-64. Congratulations on all your hard work.
17 September 2011
We had a great turnout on Saturday, September 3 when the wings were installed on the T-6. What a difference it makes to see it with wings! I know that it will be a little harder to work around, but I also know that I am a lot more motivated. Thanks to everyone that took the time to come out, it made the job go very smoothly.
As a side note, the T-6 replacement wings had Spanish markings on them when we originally got them. You can see the markings on the wings in the photos that will soon be posted on the restoration page. When the T-6 is finished and flying, it will be repainted in Navy colors.
Additionally, the oil lines and oil cooler were installed the past few weeks and the Texan now has oil in it. The brake system is also complete; we will finalize it and test the brakes in the next few weeks. We still have a lot work to do and a lot of parts to locate, but at least the light at the end of the tunnel is not an oncoming train.
The Stinson 10A was moved out from storage and some stripping of old paint begun on the boot cowl. We have contacted someone about doing the head liner and hope to have that resolved in October.
The F-4 received a much needed facelift over the past 2 months with the help of numerous volunteers and looks much better, thanks to all who participated.
Congratulations to Randy Moore who has received his private pilot's license! He plans to sponsor the L-2 next month.
The next Museum Play Day will be October 1, 2011, 2:00 pm until... Please plan to attend and bring a friend who might be interested in joining the Museum.
4 August 2011
Since the air show, work on the T-6 has progressed remarkably, and we are starting to think about the first engine run in the next 6-8 weeks. All the landing gear mechanisms for gear-up lock and retract are now in place, all control rods installed, oil cooler and vacuum pump sent for rebuild, firewall forward hydraulic lines are being installed along with some of the brake lines. If you are out at the museum, please give a huge thank you and congratulations to Mike Peterson, who has been named the T-6 crew chief for all his work on the T-6 this past year.
Hope to have the wings on by mid September, and then a push out to see how the engine systems work. After this complete rebuild, there will of course be a lot of adjusting to do. First flight before the New Year is a distinct possibility!!!
I do not want to miss noting that there has also been progress on the C-45, with some of the hoses and fitting being reinstalled in the right wing.
After the first T-6 engine run, we are planning to have a play day. The weather should be a little cooler, and the planes will all be up and running.
We have had a lot of progress on the flight operations side, with Mike Hauf being checked out in the Ki-51, Brian Laing getting his tailwheel endorsement, and Steve Sperry beginning his tail wheel training. Randy Moore is in the process of completing his last 3 hours of prep before going for his private license, and should have his license by the end of the month, he then plans to sponsor the L-2 and begin work on his tailwheel endorsement. Congratulations to them all!
It is good to see the different pilots moving up in aircraft qualifications, it also proves that the system is working.
9 June 2011
A big Thanks! to all the volunteers who helped make the 2011 air show a great success! The crowd attending the show was about the same as last year (7500 or so) and the weather cooperated to let us have a safe and profitable show. The Viper air show team and Spanky Galloway put on an extraordinary double act that really was a standout.
The Reno air race demo (Howard Pardue and Nelson Ezell) also appeared to be a big hit with the crowd who had never seen anything like it. Our new parking plan appears to work, we just need to make it go faster. Thanks again to James Clark who made the new ticket booths.
Clean up Sunday had Malcolm Laing, Brian Laing, Steve Oldham, Payton Oldham, Mike Delano, Dustin Delano, Mike Friedrich, Randy Moore, and Alex Olachia out cleaning up the tents, roped-off areas, trash, left overs, etc. that normally are left behind after the show. Cars were returned, golf carts loaded up and by the end of the afternoon the airport looked normal again. But speaking for myself, it was really hard to get up and get going Sunday morning, so an additional thanks for the help Sunday morning.
Congratulations to Jannelle Diggs, who was unanimously selected as the volunteer of the year for her work developing and promoting the air show this past year.
And a note for those who missed the show, the T-28B was made it back from the paint shop the week before the show. While 6 months does seem like a long time to paint an airplane, the paint shop did a great job, and the airplane made a truly striking appearance flying in the show.
And last but by no means least, a huge thank you to all of our sponsors that allowed us to put the air show on in the first place!