I had the opportunity to purchase North American NA-64 Yale #3464 from Ray Kirkpatrick’s estate with my brother a couple of weeks ago. The journey starts out a little over three years ago when an employee of my brother’s company says to him that his grandfather is into airplanes and has a WWII plane in his hanger. With an eyebrow raised he asked what kind. The grandson knew it was a trainer but said his Aunt would know more. We got to meet his Aunt (Patty) along with Ray at a nursing home in Texas. Ray was 95 at the time, and had many great stories from being a WWII pilot, Braniff Captain, and CAF pilot. Ray passed away a few years ago and since that time we had been in contact with Aunt Patty. The airplane meant a lot to Ray and the family and yet a few months ago we were contacted by the family saying it is now time to pass the airplane on to the next caretakers of #3464.
This is how the plane looked when we went to pick it up.
We had a couple of experienced warbird guys help us with the move. Robbie Vajdos drove with us from Austin. On the way out, we were stopping in Uvalde to eat lunch and Robbie asked if he could call Conrad Huffstutler to come meet us for lunch. Great! More airplane guys to talk to. After we were wrapping up lunch, Robbie runs by Conrad about coming with us to take apart the Yale. After a quick stop at the local airport for a change of clothes, we were on the road. I don't think Conrad knew it was going to be so hot in the hanger and it had enough dust and dirt in it to plant corn. It took about 9 hours to get the plane loaded. Robbie and Conrad jumped right in on the project and made it run smoothly. Their knowledge and work ethic is second to none. I would recommend them to anyone
Conrad and Robbie marking the wings with a "R" and "L" to help in assembly later on.
35 years of dry heat. Tough on control surfaces.
Loading the Yale
Ready for the trip home
#3464 cleaned up pretty well with just a little soap and water. In its new home in Ft. Worth.
I'll post more as things progress
Last edited by Yaleno1
on Thu Jul 02, 2015 7:53 am, edited 1 time in total.