Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Curtiss Robin C-1, NR-82H. John Bowden

This month I decided to take a look back at the history of Curtiss Robin model C-1, NR82H, which has been in my family for the better part of 5 decades.  Early on, this airplane had an interesting career as an endurance flying refueler.  Details of the early endurance flying days are documented in my article titled "Curtiss Robin NR82H - Making History" published in Sport Aviation, February 1995.  Since that article was published, I have come across a few interesting items and photos of note.  Here are a few of them, followed by the article and the personal Journal of Louise Thaden discussing her record setting endurance flight of August 1932 with partner Frances Marsallis over New York City in a Curtiss Thrush.

Earliest known photograph of NR82H as configured from the factory as a re-fuel ship for the "Missouri Robin"  Photo provided by Russell Plehinger.
NR82H engaged in re-fuel connection with "The Missouri Robin" NR78H July 1929.  Photo provided by Russell Plehinger

NR82H engaged in re-fuel connection with "The Spokane Sun God" August 1929. NR82H was piloted by C. Ray Wasall during these connections.  Photo provided by Russell Plehinger
Note: in the photo above and below it is thought the the large white area was painted on the side in order to communicate written messages to the endurance crew.

Photo of NR82H apparently "touched up" for advertisement.  Source: FLIGHT magazine, Oct. 24, 1930.

NR82H engaged in re-fuel connection with "The I.J. Fox" Curtiss Thrush endurance plane of Louise Thanden and Frances Marsallis.  August 1932.  Photo provided by Russell Plehinger.

After the above article was published, I received a couple of interesting letters... see below.  Click on the images to enlarge for reading.

READ MORE about NR82H, C. Ray Wassall, and endurance flying HERE.

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