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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.


L. Morton Bach has a modest web presence. This link yields a brief biography, information about the "Polar Bear" and business highlights.


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Morton M. Bach
Morton M. Bach

L. Morton Bach (1901-1978) was a designer and builder of airplanes.  According to one site visitor, he was not a relative of the composer.  His business was at Clover Field before 1927 as Bach Aircraft, then to Metropolitan Airport (now Van Nuys) in 1929 as Metropolitan Aircraft.  Curiously, there is no biographical file for him at the National Air & Space Museum Archives, Washington, DC.

Bach signed the Register once, on Thursday, February 18, 1926 at 12:37 PM. Based at Santa Monica, CA Clover Field, he did not indicate his itinerary, or how long he remained on the ground at Tucson. He was solo in an unidentified Curtiss Oriole. Image, left, is undated.

Earlier, in 1921 he built a small aircraft, the "Polar Bear", in his back yard with help from Riverside’s Clarence Prest, and set out to fly it from Mexico to Alaska, actually making it as far as Canada.  In 1927 he produced a cabin aircraft, the Bach CS-1, using a Super Rhone engine and wings from a war-surplus SE5 fighter.  He certified the first American trimotor, the Bach 3C-T-2 Air Yacht, in 1928. The airplane flew with two crew and ten passengers and went through nearly a dozen different model designations.

There were at least three landings at Tucson by Bach trimotored airplanes. Please direct your browser to NC302E, NC8069 and NR7092. NC8069 is the Air Yacht type, a 3-CT-8.

The trimotor went through various improved models for several years.  In 1928 he designed, but never built, the unconventional Bach Super Transport, complete with two fuselages, one on top of the other, a buffet table, high ceilings, and four engines (any two of which would fly the ship). The Depression intervened, and this was the same time the Douglas DC-1 and DC-2 were being born, so the built-in drag on the Super Transport would have made it uncompetitive against the sleeker, faster Douglas transports manufactured by fellow Register signer, Donald W. Douglas. You may view the July, 1929 patent for his Super Transport here. Bach passed away December 27, 1978.



The Register
Thanks to John Lyon of Los Angeles, CA for the image of pilot Bach, and for some of the text at left.
I'm looking for other photographs of pilot Bach to include on this page. If you have one or more you'd like to share, please use this FORM to contact me
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