Boeing 100 NC872H
NC872H is a Boeing 100. It is the civilian version of the
Boeing P-12-A. At left and below are two profile images of this airplane.
Written on the first image is, "Boeing 100 Special Wasp
Burcham' is painted on the head rest". Burcham named
his aircraft the "Blue Flash". In this craft, Burcham
won the International Aerobatic Championship.
This first image is identified as being taken in 1929. This
is in error, since it is painted in Burcham's design and
Burcham didn't own the ship until Sept. 27, 1933.
Friend of dmairfield.org Mike Gerow writes, "The
pic at left shows 872H circa 1936 when it went on an
R license after Burcham's modifications for airshow work
which included an inverted fuel system (that's the tank between
the gear struts) and a smoke-generation system that
he used for skywriting for Chevrolet." There are, "...
metal struts bolted to either side of the fuel
tank supporting the exhaust pipe. As part of his
modifications, Burcham had metal-skinned the fuselage, and
I'm guessing that's also what was used to fair in the landing
"If you look carefully at the tail, it should say R872H. At this
time, Burcham was sponsored by Chevrolet and had that name
in large block letters across the entire top wing. According
to Milo's younger son, Vance, the emblem in the blue tear
drop portrayed a sweating buzzard about to be overtaken
by a speeding bullet, symbolizing this plane. The pic
at left was how the ship looked at the 1936 NAR when Burcham
took the international aerobatic title."
Boeing 100 NC872H
The image, right, was identified as being taken in
1933 at Glendale, CA. Photo two identifies the engine as
a, "P&W R-1340 Wasp of 450 HP; A/C S/N 1143".
Mike Gerow says this about this image, "The photo at
right, probably taken in the 33-34 time frame, reflects
the ship earlier in Burcham's career with it, when it still
flew under an NC license."
Burcham brought this airplane to Tucson once on January
Below, courtesy of Katy Ranaldi Closson (daughter of Register pilot Dick Ranaldi), is NR872H performing a knife-edge pass at the 1934(?) National Air Races. Notice the Bendix pylon in the background.
Boeing NR872H, 1934 (Source: Ranaldi)
A motion picture of NR872H in flight is at the link (no guarantee of link stability; please let me KNOW if it's not available). The film shows Burcham performing acrobatics at the 1934 National Air Races in Cleveland, OH. Interestingly, the end of this film shows a formation of 24 Martin bombers enroute from March Field, Riverside, CA to Tucson, AZ. The record in the Register is indistinct as to whether the few Martin aircraft that landed in September, 1934 were part of this formation.
Below, courtesy of site visitor Stephen Green, is an undated view of 872H from the front starboard quarter. The size of the large radial engine can be appreciated in this photograph and the one just below.
Boeing 100 NC872H, Date & Location Unknown (Source: Green)
The color image, below, is from the link. It was taken at Sky Harbor Airport in Northbrook, IL.. Mike Gerow says the image was, "... taken in 1937. Burcham sold it to Joe Thorne in Jan 1938. A close inspection of the top wing center section will reveal blue. Also note that the smoke generator pipe has been removed in this photo."
Boeing 100 NR872H, 1937 (Source: Web)
The hangar in the background still stands in Northbrook.
UPLOADED: 09/29/07 REVISED: 11/07/07, 07/28/11