Curtiss Jenny Restoration

Welcome! We hope you enjoy following the restoration process of a 1918 Curtiss JN4D Jenny. Once completed, the aeroplane will be flown and displayed at the Candler Field Museum in Williamson GA (30 miles south of Atlanta). You can contact me below by clicking on "VIEW MY PROFILE"

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Location: Peachtree City, Georgia, United States

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Nothing exciting to report. After the kids were fed and homework was tackled, I had two free hours so I went to the shop. The U-bolts were installed on the engine bearers, noting that the right side was put in place temporary for when the oil tank is installed.

The holes were drilled into the firewall and brass screws installed.

Here are the side screws.

These are #6 round head brass screws.

More this weekend. Enjoy


Monday, August 29, 2011


I wanted to start out by sharing a new Jenny picture I saw this weekend.

This is Doug Davis standing in front of a Canuck in Atlanta sometime back in the 1920's. We had our annual Vintage Day Weekend at our Museum and a member of the Davis family came to the show and brought a bunch of pictures. Doug Davis was an early barnstormer in the Atlanta area and was one of the first people to set roots in the burgeoning Candler Field racetrack known as the Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport.

Gotta love that Baby Ruth logo!

I was working on the oil tank yesterday. A square rectangle had to be cut in the top portion of the tank. This was done with a nibbler and a file.

The rectangle was cut to accommodate the U-bolts which help secure the engine bearers.

Work will continue on the tank later.

Over the past few days, I had the opportunity to spray the black urethane on the firewall as well as a bunch of other miscellaneous parts that needed it (rudder horn, aileron pulleys etc).

Now that it had time to dry, the firewall was installed.

Here is another view.

And the back side of the firewall. The fuel tank will be dropped into the cradle as soon as we get all the bolts and brackets in place.

Like all of these.....

More soon



Saturday, August 20, 2011

Firewall painted

Ah, it was good to get back to work on the Jenny tonight. As I mentioned before, I've been real busy with work, the kids started school last week and fall baseball began for the older two children. Sometimes, there aren't enough hours in the day.....

Anyway, Brian Eberle met me at the hangar. We rubbed the galvanized firewall with some scotch brite to scuff up the surface.

Then an epoxy primer was sprayed. We are spraying DP-90 and I must say, I am happy with the paint.

Here is the primed firewall. It will get a gloss black finish next.

Do you remember those sheet metal parts we made last month? Well, the tray was screwed to the rear lower longerons. I built this tray in case the Jenny becomes nose heavy with the Hisso engine up front. I now have a place to bolt some lead in the event we need some.

Also, the brackets that hold the last cross member was screwed in place. This is where the belly fabric will end. It will be cemented to the wooden cross member.

While I was away, Ron got the bolts for the tail skid so they were installed, greased, torqued and cotter pined.

Lastly, I went and got a 7/16" drill at the store. We drilled the final hole size in the engine bearers. Now they will accept the AN7-46 bolts which hold the Hisso in place. The bearers were reinstalled and I started putting the brackets back in place.

That was it for one night. Pretty productive evening.

On a side note, I got an e-mail from Ken Gulliford who built a really nice Radio Controlled Jenny model. Ken wrote:

I had the misfortune of having an engine failure on the downwind leg of a landing approach. I had no choice except to land straight ahead as loss of flying speed would result in a death spiral. Jenny did her thing and as neat a stall as could be done by the most skilled pilot. I called in our official expert tree climber and he performed the most marvelous rescue possible. Virtually nothing was broken due to removal of Jenny from the tree. He delivered her to my waiting arms virtually intact and capable of flying again that except for the aileron cable which broke in the landing(treeing?).

I got to thinking about Ken's plight. It seems he wasn't the first Jenny to end up in a tree. I dug through my Jenny photos and came up with this one:

Glad the Jenny was all right, Ken.

Also while I was away, one of our museum volunteers Jan Moffett send me this neat photo of a Jenny in Atlanta:

The caption mentions the Jenny was sold to Doug Davis in 1923. It's actually a Canuck, not a JN4D as marked, but that's OK. It's still a neat picture. Ben Epps is the fellow on the right. I don't think that's Doug Davis on the left. It is someone else known only to time. Ben Epps was a very prominent Atlanta flier back then.

More soon