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XNQXN

XNQ-1

FAIRCHILD

Wing Span  41’ 4 1/2”

Length         28’ 1 7/8”

Height          11” 11 3/4”

Empty Weight            2974

Maximum Weight      3898

Cruise               135-140 MPH

Fuel                   80 Gallons

Range                755 Miles (65%)

680+ Hobbs since restoration

661   Hobbs at MOH

   The Fairchild XNQ-1/T-31 was designed in 1945. The first of three constructed made its

maiden flight in 1946. Of the three XNQs/T-31s, only one still exists. One was destroyed for

structural testing, and one was destroyed in a landing accident.

   The third ship built, s/n 75726, was first flown on February 10, 1947. On its first flight, the

test pilot forget to lower the landing gear. When 75726 was last flown in 1956, records

indicated a total of a thousand hours. Ownership transferred from the Navy to the Air Force, the Civil Air Patrol, John St Clair, the Air Power Museum, and then to us.

       Maryland in the late 70s

    The XNQ was developed to replace the AT-6 trainer. In November 1948, however, it was pointed out that normal procurement channels had not been followed, and Beech

requested a fly-off competition even before the YT-34 was test flown. On March 17,

1949, the Chairman of the Evaluation Board voted the XNQ-1 first, the T-34 second, and the T-35 third. In September of 1947, the USAF requested XNQ procurement as follows:

                                              January 1950         50

                                              April 1950              114

                                              July 1950               176


The influence of the Korean War, politics, and the tricycle gear were factors leading to

the eventual selection of the T-34.

               Iowa 1982

    T-34         T-35           T-31

     Fairchild s/n 75726 was first seem disassembled in 1978 at the Waco, Texas airport. All

attempts to obtain the airplane failed until after it was moved to Oklahoma with more damage occurring. The Air Power Museum Board finally approved the sale of the Fairchild to us in 1982.

Ten years were spent rebuilding the aircraft in an Iowa barn. The rebuilding process involved re-skinning the bottoms of the center section, the wings, the horizontal stabilizer, and the cowling. Needless to say, numerous “small” parts were also rebuilt. The Lycoming R-680-13 engine and all the instruments needed to be replaced. Having been exposed to the climate and moves from Maryland to Texas and Oklahoma, and finally Iowa, the basic airframe was hurting but rebuildable.

     The center section was

undertaken as the first major task. It was reasoned that a bad center section could doom the project. The external corrosion suggested possible internal corrosion. Internally, however, it was clean and the stencils on all four fuel bladders indicated the “third ship.”

The center section is upside down in

the pictures to the right and below.

The center section gave evidence of being

dropped on the leading edge a couple of times.

There was no spar damage. Having one retract cylinder somewhat in place helped in understanding the retraction process.

     Not only was the center section

dropped on it’s nose, so were the left and right wings. It was possible to save the nose ribs and reinforce them. Each nose rib on the left wing was damaged. This is the left wing upside down.

     This is the left wing ready for the bottom main skin. The skins remaining on the wing were not pitted like the main skins.

     Rather than using two eight-foot sheets of aluminum for the main bottom skin, one sixteen-foot skin was used. There are no “ice box” rivets in either wing. The center section, however, has a row of these

1/4 x 3/4 rivets.

     The fuselage was like one big tube. Besides using a power washer, it was necessary to use a tooth brush and thinner to get the crud from around the rivets and seams. There was no evidence of corrosion on the basic fuselage. The rudder cables, however, were rusted through, and the stainless steel heel plates showed evidence of rust. Oh yes, someone used the XNQ for target practice and placed a round through the canopy rail area.

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