AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 57

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: In an era of
unlit grass fields, night landings lit by flares
launched from the airplane must have
added a touch of excitement; an all-metal
" Barryized " wheel pant and intersection
fairing; ready to receive a two-tone elkskin
Oxford, a solid footstep is mounted on top
of the wheelpant; remember suitcases?
The Stinson has room for several, easily
reached through an external door.

" I spent a lot of hours on the airplane, but really, my role was to make it possible for some
very talented people to do what they do....You can walk around the finished airplane, stick
your head in the cabin, and just feel the craftsmanship that went into it. "
modern approximation of the original
Goodyear Airwheels.
" I spent a lot of hours on the airplane, "
says Ballance, " but really, my role was to
make it possible for some very talented
people to do what they do. There's about
20 names inscribed near the rear rolldown window. You can walk around the
finished airplane, stick your head in the
cabin, and just feel the craftsmanship that
went into it. "
READY TO FLY

Finally, the gleaming red-and-cream airplane was ready to fly. The grass at Peach
State was green and freshly mowed.
Ballance had refamiliarized himself with
the buttons and switches. He pushed the
throttle home, the Lycoming spun the big
silver propeller, and a couple of hundred
yards later Ballance eased Miss Scarlet
into the air for the first time in 12 and a
half years.
" I knew immediately we'd gotten it
right, " Ballance says. " The airplane was
almost perfectly in trim and the engine
was strong. After some basic air work, I
got the flaps down and got ready to land.
I was very, very aware that the guys lined
up in front of the hangar watching me had
poured years of their best work into this

airplane. I knew my wife, Carol, hadn't
protested at all when I went deep into our
retirement savings to finance the project.
I knew my father, and my mother too, had
landed this airplane many times before I
was ever born.
" The landing went well and I think we
all breathed easier. "
As he became more familiar with the
airplane he began to appreciate the crew
in Detroit eight decades earlier.
" It's an honest airplane but it's got a
full-swivel tailwheel with no steering so
you've got to pay attention taxiing. On
takeoff, I use a bit of 'oomph' to get the tail
up and let the rudder bite clean air. Once
it's up, you have good directional control and you can see where you're going.
It's pretty comfortable. On the way home
from Oshkosh our wives were in the back,
and they commented on the comfort and
the smooth ride. In the air, the visibility
is decent and it feels solid. The straight
wing doesn't create that much adverse
yaw, but you do have to lead the turns with
the rudder. "
Roberson has also flown the airplane. " I
found that the airplane would do whatever
I asked, " he says. " But there was always
just a tiny lag. If you got impatient and
tried something else you'd suddenly get

two things you didn't want. Patience and
smoothness are the key. "
Ballance adds: " The flaps take some
getting used to. Since the same handcrank
in the cabin roof operates the trim and the
flaps, I've learned to crank in full nose-up
trim and push on that big control column
to keep the nose from climbing. As the flaps
come down, it comes back into trim and the
column stays about neutral.
" I make wheel landings with just a
touch of power and concentrate on keeping the landing roll straight, because I
know the rudder will lose effectiveness
when the tail comes down. With no tailwheel steering it's important to have it
going where you want it when the tail
comes down. I never like using brakes in
a taildragger unless I have to, so I'm very
gentle with them. "
Since that first flight, Miss Scarlet has
traversed much of the same country it did
85 years ago. It's made a trip to Oshkosh,
within one state of its birthplace in Detroit.
And every time those blimp tires lift off the
grass at Peach State, two Harry Ballances-
and a Marthe as well-are smiling.  AOPA
KEN SCOTT is a freelance writer who builds

and flies airplanes from his rural airpark
home in Oregon.
aopa.org/pilot AOPA PILOT | 57


http://www.aopa.org/pilot

AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021

Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Intro
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 4
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 6
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 10
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 12
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 16
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 18
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 20
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 22
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 24
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 26
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 28
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 30
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 32
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 34
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 35
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 36
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 38
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 40
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 42
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 43
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 50
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 51
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 53
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 54
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 55
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 56
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 57
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 58
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 59
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 60
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 61
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 62
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 63
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 65
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 66
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 67
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 69
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 73
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 76
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - 79
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2021 - Cover4
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