The Museum now has a Stinson Reliant SR-9E on display in Hangar Two
On Friday, October 25, 2013, the 1937 Stinson Reliant, N-17107, landed at South County Airport and was immediately transported to the Museum grounds and on display in hangar 2.
The Reliant is a three-place high-wing fixed tailwheel land-based monoplane. 1,327 Reliants of all types were made from 1933 to 1941, in different models, from SR-1 to SR-10. The final commercial model, the Stinson Reliant SR-10, was introduced in 1938. A militarized version was first flown in February 1942 and remained in production through several additional versions (all externally identical) until late 1943 for the US and British armed forces.
The aircraft is on loan to the Wings of History Museum from owner and pilot Phillips Sweet of San Jose. Mr. Sweet, after a pains-taking search, found and acquired the airplane in 2008 at Ryan Field in Tucson, Arizona, where it had 'lived' since 1952. Its last flight prior to acquisition was in 1982 and thereafter had been stored in a Ryan Field hangar. Long before 1952 the log books show that it was owned by Pan American Airlines until 1943.
The Stinson Reliant is a large aircraft with a near 42-foot wingspan, 28-foot length and stands about 8-1/2 feet tall. It is powered by a seven-cylinder Wright Whirlwind R-760E-2 radial piston engine delivering about 320 horsepower. With a cruising speed of about 150 mph and a range of about 800 miles it was one of the outstanding aircraft of the 1930’s.
Phillips Sweet flew the SR-9 from Reid-Hillview to San Martin airport (E16) and he and Mark Guerrero and others helped move it into the hangar and prepare it for display. The airplane is a great addition to the Museum, and it really dominates Hangar 2.
Mr. Sweet was looking for a place to house the aircraft, which had been hangared at Reid-Hillview airport (KRHV). He liked the idea that the aircraft would be on display for people to see up close and also provide him a place to do some work on it. He will fly it occasionally and Mark Guerrero may also fly it. It was built in 1937 and so it falls into the "Golden Age of Flying" category.
Thanks to Wings of History members Frank Nichols, Daniel Petroff,
Wikipedia, and http://jimsladesairlines.com for contributing to this article.