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Written by Ed Kettler. Photos by Pat McNamara.
Online exclusive event coverage.

The second running of Warbirds Over Texas occurred on June 15-17, 2012, and the lessons learned from 2011’s inaugural event resulted in its stress-free planning and execution. The approach is for everybody to have a fun and safe event with lots of flying and a minimum of hassle. From the feedback from our guests and the North Dallas RC Club host team, we achieved our objective.

Planning started the week after we wrapped up last year’s event, documenting ideas to make things better, and identifying what worked well. There were a few minor adjustments along the way to fit the event into the warbird community and local schedules, along with the club taking over food service, but overall it was tweaking and tuning last year’s plan to build on its success.

Last year’s drought conditions were replaced by a wet spring. The local lakes were full, and there were no burn bans. The field maintenance crew of Dave Schaefer, Greg Pulcini, Charles Shafer, Bill Bartolucci, and Terry Farmer had the field in top condition prior to setup on Tuesday, and the first guests started arriving on Wednesday. The North Dallas field has a 720 x 40-foot asphalt runway with an adjacent grass runway, which also serves as an emergency strip for battle-damaged warbirds that have retract problems.

Tent areas were marked out north and south of the field’s midpoint, providing a clear viewing area for the spectators in the center pavilion. These tent areas were protected by a temporary plastic safety fence to capture airplanes making unplanned excursions off the runway.

Wayne “Mad Dog” Moore’s Moki 150-powered Stearman making a low pass on Friday morning.

Gary Mills’ pulls his massive Moki-powered AU-1 Corsair Quantico 411 off of an attack run and jinks to avoid flak.

Bob Hubbard focuses on the takeoff run of his de Havilland Twin Otter in Army Black Knights scheme.

The North Dallas grass runway was a welcome sight to battle-damaged warbirds with gear problems. This P-47 safely landed with no damage, and was soon back in the air.

The key to running this large event is to have a great team, and the North Dallas officers and club members really contributed to its successful execution. Club Vice President Charles Shafer had his volunteers well organized months in advance, and Club Secretary “Doctor Bruce” Lakotas and team served lunch on Friday and Saturday.

The star of the show was Evan Quiros’ ¼-scale Focke Wulf FW-190D-13. The D-13 was a further development of the FW-190D-9 with the Jumo 213 engine, and can be easily distinguished by the larger supercharger intake.

Evan started with the Arthur Bentley drawings and built up the structure from scratch. It is glassed with 1.5 ounce cloth and then painted with PPG base and clear coat. The 52-pound airplane is powered by a two-cylinder BME 110 feeding a functioning exhaust system TIG welded from stainless steel, and sits on Sierra gear with Glennis wheels.

Evan designed and built the custom tail wheel retract system. Additional features on the model include working cowl flaps, sliding canopy, a scale VS 9 display propeller and operating pilot step. Total build time was seven years. This is truly a flying piece of aviation artwork, and both Evan and Dino Di Giorgio shared stick time on this marvelous airplane. The full-scale airplane resides in the Paul Allen’s Flying Heritage Collection at Paine Field in Everett, Washington. If you get to the Seattle area, this is a must-see museum.

Another stunning aircraft was Jack Haynes’ 45% SPAD 13. Jack did his own design work, and it is roughly 95% complete, with only some final details to add. The craftsmanship is outstanding, and Jack flew scale missions many times over the weekend.

Joining Jack in the search for the Red Baron was Bill Holland with his Balsa USA Nieuport 17, which featured LED machine guns and sound effects. Bill hand painted the dragon along the sides of the fuselage.

Jeff Naul brought this heavily used and abused Meister Scale P-47 that is still a work in progress. Jeff and Dino Di Gorgio flew the plane extensively, working on the settings for the Moki radial and general debugging.

Bret Bowling campaigned the B-17G Milk Wagon which was built by Dan Givney. An aquarium distribution manifold with equal length hoses gets the smoke oil to each engine equally.

Jack Haynes brought this monster 45% scale SPAD 13, and it is truly a masterpiece of craftsmanship. Jack has some final details to wrap up, and he flew it frequently on Friday and Saturday with scale speeds and maneuvers.

Jimmy Davis re-covered a Tarheel Hal because he wanted something different, resulting in this distinctive scheme.

Top Gun judge Bill Holland brought this beautiful Balsa USA Nieuport 17. Bill hand painted the complex dragon on both sides of the fuselage, and fitted LED machine guns with sound effects.

What’s better than the sound of a Moki radial in the air? Three at one time! Saturday afternoon Jeff Naul’s Meister Scale P-47 formed up with Gary Mills’ Meister Scale AU-1 Corsair and Bill Holland’s CARF Corsair for Moki Madness, 10 minutes of roaring, rumbling radials … an awesome experience. There is no sound like a round! Other Moki-powered airplanes include Wayne “Mad Dog” Moore’s Stearman and Finnis Hopson’s CARF Corsair.

Dave Schaefer’s EDF F-14 led the pack in the jet category, complete with retracts and swing wing. Dave brought a T-45 Goshawk and an L-39 Albatross, and Joel Kirschbaum flew his Su-34 with vectored thrust. Tom Blakeney brought his own squadron of roughly a dozen electric-powered airplanes, including another Su-34, an XB-70, Twin Otter, Hangar 9 60-size Hellcat, A-1 Skyraider, and a Stearman.

There were no turbines this year, and David Sweatt brought the only helicopter, a modern Marine UH-1 Huey.

Bob Mueller flew this glow-powered Me-163 successfully off the grass runway, and then jettisoned the undercarriage to go in search of prey.

David Sweatt flew this well-detailed, glow-powered Marine UH-1 utility helicopter. Working features include operating navigation lights and strobes.

Dave Schaefer wrapped up the lunchtime show with a spectacular launch of an RC SR-71 rocket. Dave’s current project is an 8-foot, rocket-propelled Bell X-2.

Lawrence Hartville flew this Grumman F8F Bearcat in South Vietnamese markings.

Moki-powered CARF Corsair F4U-1A Corsair Bayou Baby was flown by VMF-217 off Guam in 1944. Finnis Hopson’s chose this scheme to honor relatives who served in the Pacific.

Dino Di Giorgio flies Jeff Naul’s P-47 past Gary Mills’ AU-1 on final during Moki Madness Dino attached a video camera to the left side of the fuselage, and captured Bill Holland’s and Gary Mills’ Corsairs in flight.

David Schaefer heavily reworked this Starmax F-14 kit with new ducting, updated flight controls, and improved swing wing mechanism. Power is via two 70mm fans with Cyclone motors on a 6S system drawing 100 amps at 2400 watts.

Dave Schaefer wrapped up the lunchtime show with a spectacular launch of an RC SR-71 rocket. Dave’s current project is an 8-foot, rocket-propelled Bell X-2.
The noon lunch break on Saturday featured an overflight with several passes of the Cavanaugh Flight Museum’s AT-6 Texan flown by chief pilot Stuart Milsom, who is also an RC pilot. The parade of airplanes on the runway allowed the spectators to get close looks at the Scale warbirds and ask the pilots questions about the construction and paint schemes.

Wrapping up the festivities, Dave Schaefer thrilled the crowd with his rocket-powered SR-71 Blackbird. We had a large spectator turnout from other clubs, and also the general public, thanks to the signs placed on the state highway near the site.

During the parade of airplanes, event director Terry Farmer and I took the opportunity to discuss our candidates for the awards to be handed out. There is no formal documentation or judging, and the only real rule we have is that the airplane has to have flown by 3 p.m. Saturday to be eligible. We had several close decisions, and were happy to award plaques and trophies for these deserving pilots and models.

Plan to join us next year on June 14-16, 2013, for the next warbird party known as Warbirds Over Texas!

Bill Holland, Gary Mills, and Dino Di Giorgio proudly stand behind their airplanes after flying Moki Madness Saturday afternoon.

Best in Show: FW-190D-13 – Evan Quiros

1st Place WW I: SPAD 13 – Jack Haynes
2nd Place WW I: Nieuport 17 – Bill Holland
3rd Place WW I: Fokker D.VII – Mark Kramer

1st Place WW II: P-47 Thunderbolt– Jeff Naul
2nd Place WW II: F4U Corsair – Finnis Hopson
3rd Place WW II: Stearman – Wayne Moore

Best Jet: F-14 Tomcat – David Schaefer
Best Multiengine: de Havilland Twin Otter – Bob Hubbard
Best Bomber: B-17G Milk Wagon – Bret Bowling/Dan Givney
Best Post WW II: AU-1 Corsair – Gary Mills

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