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Your copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register with all the pilots' signatures and helpful cross-references to pilots and their aircraft is available at the link. Or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author. ISBN 978-0-9843074-0-1.

---o0o--- Congress of Ghosts is an anniversary celebration for 2010.  It is an historical biography, that celebrates the 5th year online of and the 10th year of effort on the project dedicated to analyze and exhibit the history embodied in the Register of the Davis-Monthan Airfield, Tucson, AZ. This book includes over thirty people, aircraft and events that swirled through Tucson between 1925 and 1936. It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders. Order your copy at the link, or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author.  ISBN 978-0-9843074-4-9.


There is no data for NC5860 in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum (NASM), Washington, DC.

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This airplane is a model CA-3C, serial number 28, manufactured during June, 1928. It was the prototype for the model. it landed four times at Tucson. Two landings were on July 10, 1928 in conjunction with the 1928 National Air Tour, which identified Tucson as an overnight stop as well as a stop for fuel and rest. Louis Meister and Harry H. Dunn flew to these landings as participants in the Tour. Below is a photograph of the airplane bearing the Buhl logo on the fuselage and race #8 just behind the logo. The race number is the one the airplane wore when it was flown by Meister during the Tour, as documented on page 84 of chapter 4 of this REFERENCE. Another photograph is on page 96 of the same reference. This photograph was probably taken somewhere along the Tour route.

Buhl NC5860, Ca. 1928 (Source: Web)
Buhl NC5860, Ca. 1928 (Source: Web)

NC5860 landed again on Sunday, Septembr 23, 1928 flown again by Meister carrying Mrs. Meister and Harry Dunn as passengers. Based at Marysville, MI, they were eastbound from Los Angeles, CA to Marysville. Its final landing was on Thursday, August 14, 1930. This time it was flown by Ruth Barron carrying Bob Lloyd. Based at Hollywood, CA, they arrived from Douglas, AZ, but did not identify a destination.

Barron was probably on her way to Long Beach, CA for the beginning of the Women's Class A Pacific Derby, which started on August 18th in conjunction with the 1930 National Air Races. According to the Aircraft Yearbook for 1931, Barron placed 5th in that event, which ran from Long Beach to Chicago, IL. She flew NC5860.

This airplane is still registered with the FAA. It was recently restored and is presently flying. A Picasa photo stream posts 62 images of the restoration and first flights (the photo stream was open to the public at the upload date of this page, but it is not working as of April, 2016). The few photos below are from that stream. The first is from 1967 showing what the airlane looked like on a trailer as a "basket case" arriving for restoration.

NC5860 As it Arrived for Restoration, 1967 (Source: Picasa Stream)
NC5860 As it Arrived for Restoration, 1967 (Picasa Stream)

Next, a view of the fuselage during restoration.

NC5860 Fuselage Structure (Source: Picasa Stream)
NC5860 Fuselage Structure (Source: Picasa Stream)

The wings.

NC5860 Wing Structure (Source: Picasa Stream)
NC5860 Wing Structure (Source: Picasa Stream)

Airborne for first test flight.

NC5860 Test Flight (Source: Picasa Stream)
NC5860 Test Flight (Source: Picasa Stream)

If you have information about, or early photographs of, this airplane, please let me KNOW.


THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 03/31/12 REVISED: 04/16/16

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I'm looking for photographs of this airplane to include on this page. If you have some you'd like to share, please click this FORM to contact me.
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