Lloyd C. Stearman was an aviation pioneer who, in 1927, founded his own aircraft manufacturing company in Wichita, Kansas. Among the company’s products was a biplane, The “Cloudboy” Model 6. The aircraft was intended for use as a military trainer. The Stearman Aircraft Company was sold to William Boeing in 1934. Times were tough as the great depression rolled along and the aircraft industry was particularly hard hit. One bright spot for manufacturers was the Army Air Corp’s need for a new primary trainer. Boeing responded to that need by offering a modified version of The “Cloudboy” called the Model 75. Both the Army and Navy bought the Model 75 sparingly at first, but by 1938 the Model 75 had become the standard trainer for both branches of the armed services. The advent of World War II produced a tidal wave of demand for aircraft, including the Model 75. When production ended in 1945, Boeing had built approximately 8,500 Model 75 biplanes, known to all by it creator’s last name, “The Stearman.” The Stearman aircraft were well suited to their role as a primary trainer. They were rugged, comparatively easy to maintain and attractively priced at about $10,000. They were easy to fly, but difficult to land. This made the Stearman an ideal first level trainer capable of identifying those young air cadets with sufficient reflexes to justify sending them on to more advanced and expensive training. Every “Ace of the Base” got his start in a Stearman! After the war, Stearmans proved to be an ideal platform for seeding and dusting cotton and other crops. As more advanced “clean sheet of paper” designs appeared for agricultural use, the Stearman gained a new lease on life as the darling of air show performers, air tour operators and private collectors. Our award winning Stearman was built in March, 1943 and served until 1945 with the Army Air Corps in Pasco, Washington, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Dallas, Texas. After the war, it dusted crops in California for many years. In 2000, the aircraft was painstakingly disassembled, meticulously rebuilt from the ground up and given a new engine. When finished, the Aircraft, N67823, won top honors at the Galesburg, Illinois gathering of The Stearman Restorers Association.
Since 2007, N67812 has brought joy and excitement to clients of Palm Springs Plane Rides.