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Aircraft N879H, 1929 Hamilton Metalplane H-47       
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  Aircraft N879H, 1929 Hamilton Metalplane H-47 
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Doug Robertson



Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 1659
Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:29 pm    Post subject: Aircraft N879H, 1929 Hamilton Metalplane H-47 Reply with quote

N879H

This fully restored 1929 Hamilton H-47 Metalplane, C/N 65, one of just 29 ever made will be auctioned this Saturday by the prestigious 39th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona. The Speed Channel will televise 40 hours of the auction, including the auction of N879H.

N879H is reportedly the only airworthy Hamilton Metalplane left on the US register, or any register for that matter. The Texas owner who retired from Northwest Airlines in 1997 states there is one in Alaska that is "just two wings and a fuselage". The FAA registry and this site shows three Hamilton Metalplanes, one other also last registered in Minnesota, as is N879H. The aircraft to be auctioned has attracted many visitors over the past 38 years at South St. Paul's Fleming Field SGS in Minnesota.

Many parts had to be fabricated from scratch in the restoration, including the wicker and leather seats. Northwest Airways once operated eight six-place Hamilton Metalplanes. Frank Toll, who ran Northwest's paint shop, painted by hand the vintage Northwest Airways logo on both sides of the corrugated fuselage. The aircraft is powered by a Pratt & Whitney R-1690 Hornet radial (just try to find another spare one of those) and has amassed 5,224 hours of flight time, 41 hours since the restoration.. The guest book on the aircraft has recorded visitors from much of the world.

Barrett-Jackson held a sale preview in December 2009 in the plane's hangar that attracted about 125 people, including one who vowed he would buy it. The company's website has also had a lot of interest in the airplane. The plane's owner hopes the plane will end up in a museum.
.
Last year Barrett-Jackson sold a Ford Tri-Motor, the first aircraft they have ever auctioned, for $1.1 million.

My thanks to classmate friend (since 1939) Hal Fabriz in Minnesota for alerting me on this aviation news of great interest.

_________________
PP ASEL
Link to my photos- http://airport-data.com/photographers/Doug+Robertson:84/


Last edited by Doug Robertson on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:19 pm; edited 1 time in total

   
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Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 861
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a point of interest, here is a citation from "U.S.Military Aircraft Designations and Serials 1909 to 1979," compiled by John M. Andrade:
"An ancient Hamilton H.47, originally built in 1929 as an H.45 (registered NC134E) but later converted with a 525hp R-1690-5 and slightly extended wingspan, and used by the pioneering Panama airline Transportes Aereos Geleberet with the registration R-12 (c/n 56), was impressed with the serial 42-79546 and the designation UC-89, but was found unsuitable for service and was struck off charge in August 1943."

So now you know what a C-89 was!

   
Author Message
Doug Robertson



Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 1659
Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting! Thanks Glenn! Some US Army aviation wags call the U- aircraft "Useless", apparently also found out in the Panama Canal Zone.

BTW, in re-reading my post, I did not mean to imply N879H was ever operated by Northwest Airways, Inc. In fact, it WAS NOT. But the present owner and his Dad had the more recent NWA employment connections.

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Link to my photos- http://airport-data.com/photographers/Doug+Robertson:84/

   
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Glenn E. Chatfield



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
Posts: 861
Location: North Liberty, IA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understood what you meant!
Very Happy

The "UC" - Utility transport - was supposed to be for transports which carried fewer than seven persons. Nowadays they just call them "U" for utility

   
Author Message
Doug Robertson



Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 1659
Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of interest, N879H was built for and operated by Ontario Provincial Airways, going into service in 1930 in Canada.
_________________
PP ASEL
Link to my photos- http://airport-data.com/photographers/Doug+Robertson:84/

   
Author Message
Doug Robertson



Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 1659
Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2010 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I apologize for being off on my date of the auction by a week. I should have read my source info supplied by a friend more closely.

The Hamilton Metalplane sold on Saturday, 23 January 2010 by telephone bid to Mr. Howard Wright III of Seattle, Washington for $610,000. With 10% buyer's premium, the final cost was $671,000. This was the highest sale price of any item in the auction. Mr. Wright is a Past Trustee of the Museum of Flight. Let's hope the very rare airplane winds up in a museum on display.

_________________
PP ASEL
Link to my photos- http://airport-data.com/photographers/Doug+Robertson:84/

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