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This information comes from the listings of Non-Prefixed and Non-Suffixed aircraft reviewed by me in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum, Washington, DC.


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.



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Registration Number NC8446

In An Adjoining Orchard

This aircraft is a Buhl CA-6 Air Sedan S/N 52 (ATC #128) built October 1, 1929 by Buhl Aircraft Company, Marysville, MI. It had a 300 HP Wright J-6 R-975 engine, S/N A-10726. It weighed 4,200 pounds and left the factory as a six-place airplane. It was sold on October 5, 1929 to Metropolitan Development Company Syndicate of Van Nuys, CA.

Metropolitan bought it less engine, and with an “NX” registration number requested by the factory. It was equipped with a special motor mount adaptable to the “Apache” motor. Metropolitan never applied for a registration, there was no bill of sale, and no answers from them to inquiries.

It was sold on October 24, 1929 to Pacific Finance Corp. of Los Angeles, CA, surrendered for non-payment of purchase contract (Great Depression problems?). As of March 14, 1931, the airplane had never been assembled with an engine or flown. It sold three more times in quick succession, receiving its J-6 engine as of August 22, 1931.

According to a site visitor, during ca. 1932-33, NC8446 in the movies. "The Perils of Pauline" (1933) with Evalyn Knapp (a twelve part serial) featured the airplane in chase scenes with sister Register airplane, the Fairchild NC2K.

As of April 18, 1934, with 388:00 total flight hours, it was owned by S.J. Coughran of Buena Park, CA. We find NC8446 landing at Tucson on September 29,1934 piloted by Mr. Coughran carrying five unidentified passengers for, as recorded in the remarks section of the Register, "Pleasure sightseeing." They were westbound from El Paso, TX to Fullerton, CA.

Mr. Coughran sold the airplane with 512:45 flight hours, to Stephen Joseph Stussy of Yakima, WA on June 27, 1936. Stussy had a minor accident with the airplane on 9/13/36 at Yakima. The lower right wing was repaired as of September 26, 1936.

On September 17, 1939 the airplane took five paid passengers on a local flight at Yakima. In the climb at 250’ the engine stopped. Pilot Stussy (commercial license #29744) attempted a right turn, the plane stalled and fell into an incipient spin. It struck the ground in an adjoining orchard and burned immediately after impact. Two passengers were thrown clear and endured serious injuries. Pilot Stussy and three other passengers suffered fatal injuries. Registration cancelled as of 9/17/39.

UPLOADED: 08/05/05 REVISED: 05/13/12

The Register
I'm looking for photographs of this airplane to include on this page. If you have one or more you'd like to share, please use this FORM to contact me.

---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.


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