Need help identifying this biplane

Discussion in 'Aircraft Pictures' started by cooltouch, Mar 14, 2009.

  1. cooltouch

    cooltouch Member

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    I'm scanning a bunch of old slides right now, and have run across one that I took at an air show back in 1985, and I have no information on the airplane. I'd like to be able to include at least it's name and model number in the scan file.

    [​IMG]

    I realize it isn't a WWII aircraft, but this is the forum that I feel I may have the best chances of getting this aircraft identified. From the general design, it appears to be from the same era as the Stearman, but it doesn't look like any Stearman I've seen. I'm assuming it's a trainer, but I've had no luck so far searching the net for a match. Judging from its markings, I'm guessing it's American.

    Thanks for any help you can provide.

    Michael
     
  2. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Michael,

    >Judging from its markings, I'm guessing it's American.

    Strictly speaking, the markings appear to be French. From the look of the wings and the small engine, I'd guess it's a lighter aircraft than a Stearman, but I don't know the type either.

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  3. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    I wouldn't be drawn in by the choctaw image
    American fighters never used the 'European' type roundels as national markings.

    It looks French, I'm judging

    i. by the way the French had a habit of painting their rudders in the colours of the national flag
    ii. also by the way the French seemed to print on top of those colours exactly what type of fighter it was

    I'll hazard a guess until I can find something more definitive and say the N stands for Nieuport. The numbers underneath the N may well be the model number of the a/c but I can't quite make them out.
     
  4. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Having said that, the wheels are bearing what looks like USAAC stars
     
  5. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    But it served during WWII. Just a guess Michael but I think it's Canadian. The Fleet 16B Finch dressed to look French. Have a Google, see what you think...

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Close
    closer than a Nieuport I suspect

    Nieuport Identification

    although the tail unit looks slightly different underneath on your pic
     
  7. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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  8. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    Hi Joe. I tried the "N" number here, but failed dismally...

    search engine - Webinator

    Thanks for the site you provided! I'm surprised that my Fleet 16B photo N211K was manufactured in 1960?! Does the site provide Country or place of manufacture?
     
  9. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Sometimes it does, but if a replica, you won't get much except it's mfr date and airworthiness date.

    American Expeditionary roundels looked alot like the older European roundels, although the color scheme is different than above.
     
  10. antoni

    antoni Banned

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    Flypast July 2008 - Evolution US National Insignia

    Not until the Mexican Punitive Operation of April to May 1916 did US aircraft adopt any national insignia. A red star was hand painted on the rudder of Curtiss R-3s and R-4s. The insignia varied in size, had curved sides more akin to a leaf and were only in use for three months. The Signal Corps continued to apply this
    style of marking, with straight sides and sometimes on a white circle until 1917.

    The US entry into the Great War in 1917,hastened the need for a suitable national insignia and the design submitted by the 1st Aero Squadron, New York National Guard, when called to Federal service, was
    adopted in May of that year. This comprised a blue circle containing a white star with a red centre circle, to be marked on the upper and lower wing surfaces. The red circle was later enlarged but was to clear the inner points of the star by 1/24th of the overall diameter. In October 1917a standard 60in (152.4cm) size was adopted and the red circle was to touch the tangent lines of the star sides. Where the wing chord was smaller than 60in, a small insignia equal to the chord was authorised. At the same time, rudder striping was introduced, comprising equal widths, from the rudder post, of blue/white/red stripes.

    In France, the American Expeditionary Force found that the star insignia could, at a distance, be indistinguishable from the curved outline of the German Cross and advised that it was going to adopt a circle insignia, similar to that already in use by the French Air Force and the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Naval Air Service. This consisted of a wing chord width red outer, an inner 2/3rd diameter blue and 1/3rd diameter
    white circles, to be marked on the upper and lower wing surfaces. This roundel was authorised for use on Navy and Army aircraft on January 11,1918and later amended, on March 5, 1918,by the Signal Crops to standardise on the 60in insignia, in use by the Navy. At the same time the rudder striping was amended to red (forward)/white/blue. On May 17,1919,the insignia reverted to the 'star in circle' design as authorised in October 1917with the rudder stripes reverting to blue(forward)/white/red.
     
  11. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    Personally I would go with the Finch, there are a number of slightly unusual features which are the same on both pictures.
     
  12. cooltouch

    cooltouch Member

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    Thanks, guys! I was focusing in mostly on the shape of the rudder and the wheel struts, which were clearly different from a Stearman. I googled "fleet 16b finch" and found enough photo evidence to satisfy me, at least.

    The reason why I figured it was American was because of the star insignias on the wheels. It was interesting reading about the early US aircraft symbol designs.

    Best,

    Michael
     
  13. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    It's certainly a Fleet Finch, and I think it's painted to represent a Neiuport of the 'Lafayette' in WW1, or an approximation.
     
  14. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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    Well I never...
    Nice one Terry 8)
     

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  15. corben1

    corben1 New Member

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    Looks just like the Fleet 16B (N9427H) that I ferried from near Albany, NY to Evansville, IN in the mid-60's.

    The center cylinder on the old B5 Kinner could sure coat your forehead if is stuck above the windshield. Also a beast to start when it was hot.

    The real headache was greasing the rockers every five hours or so. There was no oil to the upper end in those engines.

    http://i479.photobucket.com/albums/rr153/corben1_photo/IMG-1.jpg
     
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