john@bigskystearman.com

Phone: (503) 631-3206

Fax: (503) 631-3403

Welcome to the Big Sky Stearman Website! We have a great record, with more than 40 years experience providing the Stearman owner/operator with services to repair his wooden wings by using owner produced parts and FAA/PMA parts. We are a source for aircraft-quality Douglas Fir wing spars. Come check us out today!

Big Sky Stearman

The Ghost Ship flown by the ghost....

 

The 600 HP "Ghost Ship" FLIES!

"I approached the test flight of the Ghost Ship with some trepidation because of its experimental nature: Pratt Whitney R 1340 600 hp, 109” Hamilton Standard prop, fuel injection, inverted fuel and oil and clipped 4 aileron wings. We made sure the CG was right (although, in the forward part of the range a heavy empty weight resulted in a lowered Vne, and a restriction against snap aerobatic maneuvers). After taxi and engine tests we were confident that it was running right. I decided to use only climb power for the takeoff, 32 hg, 2100 rpm and that was more than enough for a dramatic takeoff and climb reaching 5000 feet before I knew it. I was very pleased to find the ailerons very light and responsive. The ship was balanced and the trim was very effective. There was some vibration so we will have a dynamic prop balance done. The ship trimmed very well for a 70 mph short final on the approach and finished the flight with a good three point landing. Other than the fuel consumption this aircraft will be a delight to fly. The best part is takeoff, with so much extra horsepower the acceleration and climb is dramatic. The noise is perfect, recreating the sound of early biplane fighters with short exhaust. The only purpose of this aircraft is to make lots of noise and lots of smoke! I just need to find an aircraft carrier that I can get qualified on!

"Many thanks to the Ghost Ship skeleton crew for the assistance in the realization of a dream. We are going to tell everybody that we found it in a barn; it could have competed with Boeing and Curtiss in Test Squadron VX-1, Hampton Roads, VA!"

-Captain Cloud, alias John Pike

 

 

 

The Creation of the "Ghost Ship"

We have all seen pictures of the small sporty bi-wing fighters of the thirties flying formation above some aircraft carrier in some exotic locale. Well, be careful if you are flying along through the clouds some day and a phantom ghost ship of the past slips up along side you. Big Sky’s 1929 fighter factory (we are 80 years behind the times and proud of it!) is producing an X-plane to terrorize the skies. It’s a 600 HP bi-wing with bombs under the wings and a Jolly Roger squadron insignia on the side.

Details:
Copying Stearman structural integrity we are fashioning a pre-war carrier based biplane with the nostalgia of an early Boeing or Curtis. Using a Pratt Whitney R-1340 engine of 600 horsepower and a Hamilton Standard 109 inch propeller it will have incredible climb performance. The “look” will be obtained by a Ford Trimotor ring cowl, a Norseman shutter winter front, large 32x6 wheels with open Curtiss wheel pants. The upper wings will include 2 extra 15 gallon fuel tanks. The fuselage will have a custom configuration that resembles the early fighter biplanes. A “500 lb bomb” external fuel tank will hang underneath. It will include an inverted fuel system and smoke.

P12

  

 


 

Click Images for Larger Version
Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

The fuselage bulkheads and engine winter front are being mocked up.

Ghost Ship Picture

Each upper wing has a 12 gallon fuel tank and shortened ailerons.

Ghost Ship Picture

The upper wings and center section will have a full chord across the wing span.

Ghost Ship Picture

The lower wings are clipped 18 inches and the lower ailerons have been shortened.

Ghost Ship Picture

The landing gear being assembled with the 40 ton press.

Ghost Ship Picture

The Pratt Whitney 600 HP engine cylinders being overhauled.

P12

Ghost Ship Picture

Fitting the wings, sheet metal and gear.

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Soon-to-be wheel pants mold.

Update: (11/30/09)    

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Ghost Ship Picture

Update: (05/13/10) Update: (08/01/10)

 

 

 

 

Feel free to contact us at (503) 631-3206, fax us at (503) 631-3403, or E-Mail us at john@bigskystearman.com

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