s/n 65 NC879H // Pending

s/n 65 NC879H

1929 Hamilton H47 Metalplane

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NC-879H is the last of 25 H-47s built in 1928-29 by Milwaukee-based Hamilton Metalplane Company, a subsidiary of Boeing that pioneered all-metal aircraft. Founder Thomas Hamilton was an innovator in early aircraft and propeller design. His best-known legacy is Hamilton Standard, the iconic propeller company that became aerospace manufacturer Hamilton Sundstrand.

The H-47, powered by a Pratt & Whitney 1340 Hornet 525 hp radial engine, was developed to carry passengers and mail. Its design was heavily influenced by James McDonnell, later of McDonnell Douglas fame. A Wien Alaska Airways H-47 made the first flight between North America and Asia in 1929 when company founder Noel Wien piloted the craft from Alaska to Siberia and back.

Initially configured as a floatplane, the two-pilot, six-passenger NC-879H spent its working career in rugged backcountry. The plane fought forest fires in the Canadian wilderness and hauled supplies in Alaska before an irreparable engine failure left it near the Arctic Circle.

In 1951, Northwest Airlines pilot Harry McKee found the decommissioned NC-879H and took the plane to Minneapolis with a dream of restoring it for museum display. When that effort foundered, the plane went into storage.
Twenty years later, vintage aircraft aficionado Jack Lysdale purchased NC-879H and began a painstaking three-year restoration of the plane. His team rebuilt virtually every part and system, often fabricating new pieces from the original plans. The result is an acknowledged masterwork of aircraft restoration.

In 2010, Seattle entrepreneur Howard Wright began writing his own chapter in NC-879H’s colorful history. A devoted floatplane pilot, Wright was determined to return NC-879H to its original float configuration.  To that end, he set about locating the plane’s original 1929 EDO 6400s.  After an exhaustive global search, the EDOs were uncovered in a Fairbanks boneyard. Seattle’s Kenmore Air, which specializes in float planes, was able to painstakingly restore the weather-battered floats to pristine, airworthy condition using EDO’s original plans.

Wright always saw himself as the steward of NC-879H’s history – the keeper of a historic flame. He took great satisfaction in sharing his H-47 with the public, routinely piloting the plane to airshows and fly-ins, where it drew large and curious crowds.

NC-879H has most recently been part of the collection at the Historic Flight Foundation in Spokane, Washington.

Sales may be subject to local Sales Tax / V.A.T. / G.S.T.

Aircraft maybe subject to prior sale, lease, and/or removal from the market without prior notice.

Specifications subject to verification upon inspection.

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