Porterfield Airplane Club

Keep the Skinny Birds Flying Safely


I don't know if any of you were a member of the "Porterfield Airplane Club" which Chuck Lebrecht hosted for many years. Chuck has decided to give up the Porterfield Club due to health and economic reasons. I've taken it upon myself to keep the legacy going and have started this social web site dedicated to "Keeping the Skinny Birds Flying".

The site will be a good place to share information, pictures, stories, videos, parts, and to create lasting friendships for people with an interest or knowledge of the Porterfield Airplane. I just started getting this site together June 1st, 2009, so there is a limited amount of information. If you have any information to add, please do. If you have parts for sale, help items, technical info, or just want to share your airplane pictures please join us.

Also, if you have any ideas to improve the site, please feel free to comment and/or help build the site. I hope that this site will generate a database for information and history pertaining to the Porterfield Airplanes that may be shared and used by all interested. As well as a place to meet and make life long friends whom share some of the same interests of flying, building, and knowledge of the Porterfield Airplane. If you know any others that may be interested please invite them to join.

Brief History of the Porterfield Airplane

The American Eagle Aircraft Corporation was started in 1925 by Ed Porterfield for the express purpose of providing a safe training aircraft for the fledgling Porterfield Flying School. Porterfield felt that a safer, better performing trainer was badly needed to replace the existing "Jennys" and Lincoln "Standards" being used in his flight school. In April 1926, the American Eagle, Model A-1, first flew from Richards Field in Kansas City, Missouri. The airplane had been designed by Waverly Stearman after much consultation with Porterfield concerning the characteristics necessary for a good training aircraft. It was a three-place, open cockpit bi-plane that was suitable for both training and light commercial activity and was typical of the era. In November, 1927, the OX-5 powered A-1 received an Approved type Certificate - ATC #17. Various changes were made to the original A-1 design (The most notable being the addition of ailerons on the lower wing.) leading to the A-101 designation. Most Eagles were powered with war surplus Curtiss OX-5 engines, but variations were available with the OXX-6, Hisso, Anzani, and others. During may of 1928, production was 12 planes per week with ever increasing orders. In mid-1928 an OX-5 powered A-101 sold for $2815. Approximately 300 of the A-1 / A-101 models were sold.

In 1929, American Eagle brought out a new model, the A-129, which received ATC #124. The new model was very similar to the earlier "Eagles" except that it was powered by a 5-cylinder Kinner K5 engine which required a longer nose on the aircraft to maintain proper balance. This gave rise to the "Eagle" A-1 and A-101 versions being called "shortnose Eagles", and the A-129 Kinner powered model being called the "longnose Eagle" and other such names. The A-129 "Kinner Eagle" would not win any beauty contests, but it was stable and reasonably easy to fly. The A-129 was also sold with several other engine configurations including the OX-5 and OXX-6.

During 1928 and 1929 business was booming for the American Eagle Aircraft Corporation and they produced several other aircraft in addition to the A-101 and A-129. None of these sold as well, but production of the A-201, A-139, A-229, A-329, A-429, as well as several prototypes, placed the company near the top of the vibrant aircraft industry. The stockmarket crash in late 1929 changed all that, and in 1930 the company found almost no market for its aircraft. In desperation, Porterfield started the design that eventually became the American Eaglet monoplane. It was a small, light weight, parasol design that was powered by a three cylinder Szekely radial engine. Although the "Eaglet" sold fairly well, the company was in trouble, and in May 1931, the American Eagle Aircraft Corporation merged with the Lincoln Aircraft Company. The new company was known as the American-Eagle-Lincoln Aircraft Company, and most of the production was focused on the "Eaglet". However, the deepening depression soon ended this last gasp of American Eagle. Ed Porterfield went on in later years to organize the well known Porterfield Airplane Company.

During its six years in existence the American Eagle Aircraft Corporation produced over 700 aircraft and held eight Approved Type Certificates issued by the Department of Commerce. It was the third largest producer of commercial aircraft in the world at the time of the depression, and its products were among the finest private aircraft manufactured during that era.

History from Wings of History Museum.

During the 1930s, the firm of Porterfield Aircraft Corporation, located in Kansas City, was enjoying a modest success with the Model 35 light aircraft - a tandem two-seater built of traditional steel tube fuselage with a wooden wing - all, of course, covered in fabric. The exceedingly slim fuselage sported a variety of engines including the five-cylinder Warner Scarab junior radial of 90-hp. Aimed at the lower-cost sport flying market, the Model 35 could be fitted with various options and numerous paint schemes were available.

As the new four-cylinder opposed powerplants came available, Ed Porterfield modified his basic design a bit to take advantage of these new and reliable engines. The CP-50 retained the standard Porterfield profile but it was fitted with either Franklin, Continental, or Lycoming engines - all of 50-hp. Given the name Collegiate, famed race pilot Roscoe Turner was briefly the sales manager and director of advertising for the new design. Available in variants ranging from a very basic training machine to a more deluxe sports model, over 50 were built before attention was turned to the higher-powered CP-55 and CP-65 models.

Once again, these aircraft were all fitted with opposed engines from the three manufacturers but the airframes were basically similar to the earlier design.
Porterfield never achieved the numerical success of the larger light aircraft manufacturers such as Piper, Aeronca, and Taylorcraft but the planes were well made and popular with pilots. However, with the start of World War Two, light aircraft production for civilian use came to a stop and the bigger companies benefited greatly from military contracts but Porterfield, with no large military orders forthcoming, quietly faded away.

Porterfield 35
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Model 35 Flyabout
Role two-seat cabin monoplane
Manufacturer Porterfield Aircraft Corporation
Designed by Noel Hockaday
First flight 1935
Introduced 1935
Number built 240+

The Porterfield Model 35 Flyabout was an American two-seat cabin monoplane built by the Porterfield Aircraft Corporation of Kansas City.
The aircraft was designed by Noel Hockaday and was built by students at the Wyandotte High School as the Wyandotte Pup. Porterfield Aircraft recognised the potential of the aircraft design and bought the design rights and also the services of Hockaday as works manager and designer. The Pup was developed to appear in 1935 as the Porterfield Model 35 Flyabout a braced high-wing-monoplane. It had a fixed tailskid landing gear and room for two. It was originally powered by a 60hp (45kW) LeBlond 5D radial engine. Variants later appeared with different engine installations and a deluxe model the De Luxe Sport. Over 240 aircraft were built.

Model 35
1935 production variant with a 60hp (45kW) LeBlond 5D radial engine
Model 35-70
1937 production variant with a 70hp (52kW) LeBlond 5DE radial engine.
Model 35-V
Variant powered by a 65hp (48kW) Velie M-5 engine.
Model 35-W (De Luxe Sport)
Luxury model (also known as the Model 90) with a 90hp (67kW) Warner Scarab Junior radial engine.

Specifications (Model 35-70)
Data from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985), 1985, Orbis Publishing, Page 2760
General characteristics
Crew: 1
Capacity: 1 passenger
Length: 20 ft 3 in (6.17 m)
Wingspan: 32 ft 0 in (9.75 m)
Height: 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Wing area: 147 ft² (13.66 m²)
Empty weight: 806 lb (366 kg)
Gross weight: 1310 lb (594 kg)
Powerplant: 1 × LeBlond 5DE radial piston, 70 hp (52 kW)
Maximum speed: 115 mph (185 km/h)
Range: 360 miles (579 km)
Service ceiling: 15,000 ft (4570 m)

Porterfield Collegiate
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Role two-seat monoplane trainer
Manufacturer Porterfield Aircraft Corporation
First flight 1936
Introduced 1936
Produced 1936-1941
Number built 400

The Porterfield Collegiate was an American two-seat training monoplane built by the Porterfield Aircraft Corporation of Kansas City.
Developed originally as the Porterfield Zephyr a light-weight version of the earlier Model 35 Flyabout for use a pilot trainer. Powered by a 40hp (30kW) Continental A-40 engine it was later re-designated the Porterfield CP-40. To improve performance the engine was replaced with a 50hp (47kW) Continental A50-4 engine and re-designated the CP-50 Collegiate. It was a braced high-wing monoplane with a tailskid fixed landing gear. Total production was about 400 when production stopped in 1941 at the start of American involvement in the Second World War. A number of variants were produced with different engine installations.

CP-40 Zephyr
Original 40hp version
Improved production variant with a 1935 production variant with a 50hp (47kW) Continental A50-4 engine
Revised engine cowling
Powered by a 65hp (48kW) Continental A65-8/9 engine.
Powered by a 60hp (45kW) Franklin 4AC-171-A1 engine.
Powered by a 65hp (48kW) Franklin 4AC-176-B29 engine.
Powered by a 50hp (37kW) Avco Lycoming O-145-A1 engine.
Powered by a 55hp (41kW) Avco Lycoming O-145-A3 engine.
Powered by a 65hp (48kW) Avco Lycoming O-145-B1/B2 engine.
Specifications (CP-65)
Data from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985), 1985, Orbis Publishing, Page 2760
General characteristics
Crew: 2
Length: 22 ft 8 in (6.91 m)
Wingspan: 34 ft 9 in (10.59 m)
Height: 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)
Wing area: 168.80 ft² (15.68 m²)
Empty weight: 671 lb (304 kg)
Gross weight: 1160 lb (526 kg)
Powerplant: 1 × Continental A65-8/9 flat-four piston engine, 65 hp (48 kW)
Maximum speed: 108 mph (174 km/h)
Range: 300 miles (483 km)
Service ceiling: 15,000 ft (4570 m)

High Flight

Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there,
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long, delirious burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew.
And, while with silent, lifting mind I've trod
The high untresspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

John Gillespie Magee, Jr


Porterfield Aircraft - 1st Factory Location 3 Replies

Started by Brett Lovett. Last reply by Andy Gelston on Saturday.

Trevor has dropped the price of his Collegiate to $25K.

Started by Andy Gelston on Saturday.

Defense Plant Corporation 1 Reply

Started by Mark Shayne. Last reply by Andy Gelston on Wednesday.

Propeller for CP 65 8 Replies

Started by Mark Shayne. Last reply by Mark Shayne Apr 29.

Porterfield Aircraft locations in Kansas City 2 Replies

Started by Brett Lovett. Last reply by Brett Lovett Apr 8.

Trim “jack screw” lube 2 Replies

Started by Mark Shayne. Last reply by Mark Shayne Apr 3.

Inner Tube for Shinn/Firestone wheel 6C5HB 2 Replies

Started by Mark Lawrence Storey. Last reply by Mark Lawrence Storey Mar 25.

Looking for ELT

Started by Matt Haines Mar 7.

Early Hockaday design on Barnstormers, for sale

Started by Andy Gelston Mar 2.

Aircraft Structural Repair - Wood Aircraft Structures 2 Replies

Started by Bill Skinner. Last reply by Bill Skinner Feb 11.

Pitch Trim Placard 5 Replies

Started by Mark Shayne. Last reply by Mark Shayne Jan 11.

CP-50 w/A65 for sale in Bryan, TX

Started by Andy Gelston Jan 9.

Trying to contact TC Holder 4 Replies

Started by Aaron Smokovitz. Last reply by Andy Gelston Jan 9.

Blog Posts

1947 Porterfield For Sale

Posted by Tom Grafe on May 14, 2024 at 7:11pm — 1 Comment

tail support wires

Posted by Terry Bryson on May 7, 2024 at 6:30pm — 2 Comments


Posted by Bobby Jones on April 21, 2024 at 6:01pm — 3 Comments

Fuel shut off valve

Posted by Terry Bryson on December 23, 2023 at 5:28pm — 3 Comments

Ownership of Porterfield Aircraft Co??

Posted by Bill Bussel on August 6, 2023 at 2:08pm — 1 Comment

Oshkosh 2023

Posted by Trevor Bange on May 3, 2023 at 8:44am — 4 Comments

Porterfield Plans

Posted by NaHeMeKa on November 9, 2022 at 11:24am — 1 Comment

Looking for Tips on Flying the CP65

Posted by Trevor Burns on September 1, 2022 at 8:18pm — 5 Comments

37-70 , N17027

Posted by Paul Workman on December 2, 2020 at 8:35am — 2 Comments

AD's on wing struts

Posted by Victor Briley on October 15, 2020 at 3:22pm — 1 Comment

Restoration Continued

Posted by Bryant Chambers on August 3, 2020 at 6:30pm — 4 Comments

Porterfield Club Newsletters

Posted by Bill Skinner on July 13, 2020 at 12:51pm — 3 Comments

A Tribute to My Dad

Posted by Bill Skinner on July 10, 2020 at 7:44am — 1 Comment

need fairleads for 1940 Collegiate

Posted by Victor Briley on June 29, 2020 at 3:06pm — 21 Comments

FP-65 Motor Mount

Posted by Bob Hayden on June 2, 2020 at 1:17pm

LP 65 to C85 Conversion

Posted by john elliott on April 27, 2020 at 5:39pm — 6 Comments

N37716 Begins her restoration

Posted by kevin feauto on January 25, 2020 at 4:47pm — 4 Comments

Aircraft For Sale

Rare LSA Porterfield Makes Second Oshkosh Visit

By Randy Dufault

Dave Reichard wasn’t looking for a rare airplane when he began searching for a plane to exercise his newly minted sport pilot certificate in. At the time, an Aeronca Champ seemed like the logical choice since that was his mount for most of his training.

A for-sale listing changed that decision.

“I have a friend who looks at all the antique listings,” Dave said. “He told me one day, ‘Hey Dave, there’s a Porterfield for sale.’ And I said to him the same thing that everyone says to me when I say I have a Porterfield, ‘What’s a Porterfield?’”

A trip to a private airstrip in Kentucky followed, and Dave purchased the plane.

“My friend that told me about it has lots of tailwheel time in lots of different types. A friend who is my mechanic and is an IA and I went down … and we checked it out,” Dave said.

After some back and forth over the paperwork, Dave paid for the craft. Test flights demonstrated it had no bad tendencies and was a sweet-flying airplane.

A 7.3-hour cross-country effort brought the plane here to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017 from its current home in the Dayton, Ohio, area. Eighty mph cruise speeds, and a particularly short range, make such trips a lengthy affair.

Dave last brought the plane to Oshkosh in 2014, shortly after he purchased it.

“In 2014, I met several other Porterfield owners, and one of them told me that there were 24 flying examples in the world,” Dave said. “A fellow I met this past [weekend] has one that’s bent, so there might only be 23 right now.”

“I have not met another Porterfield owner, except online or at AirVenture,” he added. “I’ve not seen another Porterfield [airplane].”

Porterfield built airplanes for a short period before World War II, and this LP65 (Lycoming powered) model was one of its last efforts. A tornado damaged this particular craft in the 1970s, and, according to Dave, it spent nearly 30 years of its 77-year life not flying. Restoration eventually happened, and the completed project appeared in the September 2008 issue of EAA’s Vintage Airplane magazine.

All Porterfield models are compliant, type-certificated light-sport aircraft.

Dave has added about 100 hours, half of his total time as a pilot, to the LP65 since he purchased it. He enjoys bringing it to fly-in events around the Dayton area, and is always ready and willing to answer the “What is it?” question.

“That’s what happens when you own a rare airplane,” Dave said.

Latest Activity

Terry Bryson commented on Terry Bryson's blog post tail support wires
"Thanks Andy, I will check it out.  I have found that the tail brace wire from a Citabria fits the Porterfield perfectly.  The wire is 48 9/16 with rolled threads.  I just recently attached one side and haven't had a chance to…"
Andy Gelston commented on Terry Bryson's blog post tail support wires
"My FP-65 has streamlined wires. I think there's a forum posting in the archives that gives the lengths of top and bottom tail brace wires."
Andy Gelston replied to Brett Lovett's discussion Porterfield Aircraft - 1st Factory Location
"I think they call it...progress?"
Andy Gelston commented on Tom Grafe's blog post 1947 Porterfield For Sale
"I'm not sure where the 1947 is coming from, Tom, as N25492 was built in 1940, s/n 621, which makes her a CP-50. Her registration expired over three years ago and will be purged in early 2026. Did you buy her from Jack Bowyer, up in…"
Andy Gelston commented on Bobby Jones's blog post ????
"I had a chat with the ORA ignoramuses who think their Collegiate is a J3 Cub and were treating the old girl quite irreverently when ground handling her. I was NOT impressed! If you solo from the rear, the CG is too far aft, so she'll wallow…"
Andy Gelston posted a discussion

Trevor has dropped the price of his Collegiate to $25K.

He posted this on Barnstormers.com on May 9th, but then in a May 14th posting he's back up to $27,500, so that means he'd probably accept $22K if you go up and perform a thorough pre-purchase, then explain to him why she worth only $22K...See More
Andy Gelston replied to Mark Shayne's discussion Defense Plant Corporation
"The DPC bought a lot of Collegiate type aircraft and issued them to contracted flight schools participating in the Civilian Pilot Training Program. For instance, Interstate Aircraft's sole buyer of all their Cadets was the DPC. They never sold…"
Tom Grafe posted a blog post

1947 Porterfield For Sale

I have a 1947 porterfield For Sale if anyone is interested please get with me thank you! Tom 870 955-0849N25492See More
Terry Bryson posted a blog post

tail support wires

I am missing the upper tail brace wires.  I have the lower and they are the streamline type.  What are other restorers using for the upper wires and what is a good source?  Thanks.See More
May 7
Gary Baca posted a status
"Is there anyone from this group going to Oshkosh, this year?"
May 7
Bobby Jones commented on Bobby Jones's blog post ????
May 2
Mark Shayne replied to Mark Shayne's discussion Propeller for CP 65
"I have an update on this: I did go with a beautiful factory new Sensenich 72/44, and for our config it works great. Solo indicated airspeed is 90mph at 2150 rpm. With an adult sized passenger, we indicate 86mph at 2150. We didn't seem to give…"
Apr 29
Mark Shayne commented on Bobby Jones's blog post ????
"Hi Bobby, I find that interesting as well. Ours is placarded “solo front seat only.” There’s a YouTube video of them flying a CP 65 at old Rhinebeck aerodrome in New York and soloing from the rear. Ours was originally an LP 65 but…"
Apr 29
Mark Shayne commented on Dan R. Stewart's photo
Apr 28
Mark Shayne posted a discussion

Defense Plant Corporation

Greetings fellow Porterfield admirers. Back in March, Andy posted about an LP-65 on Barnstormers. The ad called it a "warbird" because it was transferred to the Defense Plant Corporation (DPC) in 1942-1944. Our Skinny Bird NC27249, was also owned by the DPC from 3/12/43 until 8/8/44. What is the consensus on this qualification for such status? I would imagine DPC used these birds for primary pilot training to support our country's defense efforts. Every Cub, Champ, Luscombe andT-Craft must have…See More
Apr 28
Bobby Jones posted a blog post


So can you fly the Porterfield from the back seat . I can't find that info. ThanksSee More
Apr 21
Andy Gelston left a comment for Bobby Jones
"Welcome to our wee club for the skinny birds, Bobby! I see you brought Clint Murphy's girl home to join your flock. Do you still have your LACO biplane? How does she fly? I was mesmerized by the design since the prototype first flew in the late…"
Apr 18
Bobby Jones is now a member of Porterfield Airplane Club
Apr 18
Brett Lovett replied to Brett Lovett's discussion Porterfield Aircraft - 1st Factory Location
"Andy, My pleasure.  Porterfield was my starting point for my interest in Kansas City area aviation history, sparked by getting to fly a Porterfield LP-65 when I was in college.Yes, the sign is a location reference:  District 4, Block…"
Apr 15
Andy Gelston replied to Brett Lovett's discussion Porterfield Aircraft - 1st Factory Location
"This is wonderful, Brett! It really gives us a better sense of where our skinny birds came from, seeing these pictures of the factory locations. Ed started out with minimal funding, so he couldn't afford a lot of square footage when building…"
Apr 14

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