PT-19 Takes to The Skies Again After Six-Year Restoration

After seven years of restoration and an additional fourteen months to replace the engine, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Houston Wing's Fairchild PT-19 took to the air on June 25, 2024.

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After seven years of restoration and an additional fourteen months to replace the engine, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) Houston Wing’s Fairchild PT-19 took to the skies on June 25, 2024. Thanks to the dedication of several Houston Wing members and volunteers, the aircraft is now flying in support of the CAF’s mission to educate, inspire, and honor. The restoration project team, led by Ed Vesley, Stan Turner, Tom Calpouzos, and Lisa Sanford, invested approximately 5,000 hours of work to complete the project.

PT 19 Takes to The Skies Again After Six Year Restoration ed Vesely

The restoration began with stripping the aircraft down to its bare airframe, including a complete rebuild of the center section. The aircraft’s wings and horizontal stabilizer required only minor repairs. The team installed new electrical systems and hoses, rebuilt the main landing gear and tail wheel, and recovered and painted the fuselage, wings, and flight surfaces to restore the aircraft’s original appearance.

The Houston Wing extends special thanks to Skip Harrison of Harco Aviation for his inspection expertise and Mark Denest of MD Aero for his knowledge of PT-19s.

The Houston Wing posted, “Test pilot Ed Vesley reported no significant issues throughout the one-hour flight. We’ll now continue to fly the PT-19 for a few more hours to break in the engine, and then it will be put back on the flight line, hopefully in time to offer rides at our July 13 event at Houston Executive Airport.”

As the PT-19 returns to the rides program, people will once again have the opportunity to experience this amazing aircraft through flight. This project not only showcases the team’s skills and dedication but also highlights the importance of preserving historical aircraft. The PT-19’s return to airworthy status celebrates heritage, craftsmanship, and the passion of those who work to keep aviation history alive. The Houston Wing members have brought history back to life, ensuring the PT-19’s legacy continues to inspire and educate. For more information about the CAF Houston Wing, visit www.houstonwing.org

Moreno-Aguiari

Born in Milan, Italy, Moreno moved to the U.S. in 1999 to pursue a career as a commercial pilot. His aviation passion began early, inspired by his uncle, an F-104 Starfighter Crew Chief, and his father, a military traffic controller. Childhood adventures included camping outside military bases and watching planes at Aeroporto Linate. In 1999, he relocated to Atlanta, Georgia, to obtain his commercial pilot license, a move that became permanent. With 24 years in the U.S., he now flies full-time for a Part 91 business aviation company in Atlanta. He is actively involved with the Commemorative Air Force, the D-Day Squadron, and other aviation organizations. He enjoys life with his supportive wife and three wonderful children.

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About Moreno Aguiari 3337 Articles
Born in Milan, Italy, Moreno moved to the U.S. in 1999 to pursue a career as a commercial pilot. His aviation passion began early, inspired by his uncle, an F-104 Starfighter Crew Chief, and his father, a military traffic controller. Childhood adventures included camping outside military bases and watching planes at Aeroporto Linate. In 1999, he relocated to Atlanta, Georgia, to obtain his commercial pilot license, a move that became permanent. With 24 years in the U.S., he now flies full-time for a Part 91 business aviation company in Atlanta. He is actively involved with the Commemorative Air Force, the D-Day Squadron, and other aviation organizations. He enjoys life with his supportive wife and three wonderful children.

1 Comment

  1. In 1955 I had the privilege of flight testing a PT-19 that had been stored in a barn in Ft Worth, TX for several years. As we headed across town to our base airfield I noticed the oil temperature gauge rising so landed and had a mechanic check the engine. He found a bird’s nest in the vent to the oil gauge that the first mechanic had missed.

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