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"Do these long wings make me look fat?"

At an "Ask An Expert" lecture by John Anderson, National Air and Space Museum curator of aeronautics, I learned that although Howard Hughes' H-1 racer is displayed wearing its cross-country "long" wings, the high-speed-dash wings, which are shorter, are in storage at the Museum's Garber facility in...

The H1 and its owner in 1932.


At an "Ask An Expert" lecture by John Anderson, National Air and Space Museum curator of aeronautics, I learned that although Howard Hughes' H-1 racer is displayed wearing its cross-country "long" wings, the high-speed-dash wings, which are shorter, are in storage at the Museum's Garber facility in nearby Suitland, Maryland. Curators initially thought about removing the cross-country wings and installing the high-speed wings, but Associate Director Peter Jakab said,"It was an enormously complex job." The H-1 has worn its long wings ever since.

I also learned that in the mid-1970s, the General Services Administration took ownership of Hughes' H-4 Flying Boat. According to NASM's catalogue of aircraft: "A three-cornered deal was arranged among GSA, the Smithsonian, and Hughes. The Smithsonian was given title to the Goose for a 'legal instant' and the deal immediately concluded with the exchange of the Spruce Goose for the H-1 and $700,000."

NASM ought to put the short wings on eBay. Wouldn't all us prop-heads love to hang them on a wall?

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