The Stearman aircraft design has proven to be very flexible and adaptable to many configurations for specialized applications. The Crop Duster community in the 1950’s successfully applied a lot of creativity in customizing the Stearman for the dusting role.
Addison Pemberton has accepted that creative challenge and has come up with some configurations of his Stearman 450, to optimize the aircraft’s suitability for special needs. He has generously agreed to share three of those custom designs, which were the most successful, with the members of the Stearman Restorers Association.
The first photo shows the Stearman 450 RG in it’s first test flight. This mod significantly reduced the drag on the Stearman and allowed it to cruise at 186 mph. However, it retained the original landing characteristics of the stock Stearman, and Addison returned to the drawing board for a version that would be easier to land.
The Stearman 450 Trainer with Conventional Gear is shown in some detail in the second photo. With this model, the pilot was free to wave at spectators along the side of the runway while making an uneventful landing. An instant hit with the “Wheel Landers”.
With dreams of establishing a new competition category at Reno, The Addison Pylon Racer was born. The performance characteristics of this version are a closely guarded secret and will be kept under wraps until they can be proudly displayed as the winner of it’s first pylon race.
There are other designs in work, and if successful