Travel Air 6000
The Travel Air 6000 (later known as the Curtiss-Wright 6B when Travel Air was purchased by Curtiss-Wright) was a six-seat utility aircraft manufactured in the United States in the late 1920s.
|Travel Air 6000|
|Travel Air A-6000-A preserved in flying condition carrying the logo of the 2003 National Air Tour|
|Role||Civil utility aircraft|
|Manufacturer||Travel Air, Curtiss-Wright|
|First flight||April 15, 1928|
|Number built||ca. 150|
Design and developmentEdit
It was developed as a luxury version of the Travel Air 5000 marketed principally as an executive aircraft, although its size proved popular with regional airlines, which purchased most of the roughly 150 machines built.
The 6000 was a high-wing braced monoplane with a fuselage constructed of steel tube and covered in fabric. In keeping with its intended luxury market, the fully enclosed cabin was insulated and soundproofed, and included wind-down windows. The basic model was priced at $12,000, but numerous options were offered that could nearly double that price; actor Wallace Beery's aircraft cost him $20,000 and was the most expensive Model 6000 built.
6000s were operated in 1928 by National Air Transport on their US mail and passenger routes from Chicago to New York, Chicago to Dallas and Chicago to Kansas City.
Frame number 6B-2012 was delivered to Harry Ogg of Newton, Iowa on August 20, 1929, who used it as a mobile office and technology demonstrator for his Automatic Washing Machine Company, which eventually morphed into Maytag Corporation. The aircraft was significant in that it included space for a secretary and stenography machine, as well as hook ups for up to 4 washing machines for demonstration purposes. The aircraft was nicknamed "Smiling Thru" and carried the registration of NC677K.
Two Travel Air 6000 were purchased by the Paraguayan government during the Chaco War (1932-1935) for the Transport Squadron of its Air Arm. These aircraft belonged to TAT with the registrations NC624K (c/n 6B-2011) and NC9815 (c/n 6B-1029); They received the military serials T-2 and T-5 (later re-serialled as T-9). The aircraft were intensively used during the conflict as air ambulances. They both survived the war and continued flying in the Air Arm. In 1945, they were transferred to the first Paraguayan Airline, Líneas Aéreas de Transporte Nacional (LATN) and received the civil registrations ZP-SEC and ZP-SED. They were withdrawn from use in 1947.
A Travel Air 6000 was a "star" in the Howard Hawks 1939 film Only Angels Have Wings which was a fictional depiction of the early mail service in South America whose early days mirrored the aircraft and issues of US civilian mail service. Movie crash is a Hamilton Metal Plane
A Travel Air 6000 also appeared in the 1959 movie, "Edge of Eternity". Registration N377M is still active and it is owned and registered in Mount Pleasant, TX.
A Travel Air 6000 (Curtis-Wright 6-B) appeared in and performed stunts in the 1939 Laurel & Hardy classic movie, The Flying Deuces.
- Model 6000 - six seat version, powered by a 220 hp (164 kW) Wright J-5 engine
- Model 6000A (or A-6000, or A-6000-A) - version powered by 450 hp (336 kW) Pratt & Whitney Wasp engine
- Model SA-6000A - floatplane version of the Model 6000A
- Model 6000B (or B-6000, later 6B) - version powered by 300 hp (224 kW)Wright J-6-9 radial engine.
- Model S-6000-B - floatplane version of the Model 6000B
- Model 6B - 1931 and up Curtiss Wright production. Four built in Wichita, Four Built in San Diego.
- Paraguayan Air Force
- 839 – 6-B airworthy with Henry M. Galpin of Kalispell, Montana.
- 865 – S-6000-B airworthy with Pole Pass Airways in Seattle, Washington.
- 884 – 6-B airworthy with Mid American Flight Museum Urbana, Ohio.
- 967 – S-6000-B on static display at the Alaska Aviation Museum in Anchorage, Alaska.
- 986 – S-6000-B airworthy with Hellgate Equipment in Drummond, Montana.
- 1036 – S-6000-B registered to Philip L. Taylor of Seattle, Washington.
- 1099 – SA-6000-A airworthy with Robert W. Everts of Fairbanks, Alaska.
- A6A-2003 – A-6000-A airworthy with Yellowstone Aviation in Jackson, Wyoming.
- 6B-2005 – S-6000-B registered to Heritage Aircraft in Portland, Oregon.
- 6B-2024 – S-6000-B registered to Richard Livingston of Hamilton, Montana.
- 6B-2040 – 6-B airworthy at the Delta Flight Museum in Atlanta, Georgia.
Data from Beech Aircraft and their Predecessors
- Crew: 1
- Capacity: 5 passengers
- Length: 31 ft 2 in (9.50 m)
- Wingspan: 48 ft 6+1⁄2 in (14.80 m)
- Height: 9 ft 0+1⁄2 in (2.76 m)
- Wing area: 282 sq ft (26.2 m2)
- Airfoil: Clark Y (15%)
- Empty weight: 2,700 lb (1,225 kg)
- Gross weight: 4,230 lb (1,919 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Wright J-6-9 Whirlwind 9-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine, 300 hp (220 kW)
- Maximum speed: 130 mph (210 km/h, 110 kn) at sea level
- Cruise speed: 110 mph (180 km/h, 96 kn)
- Range: 550 mi (890 km, 480 nmi)
- Service ceiling: 16,000 ft (4,900 m)
- Rate of climb: 800 ft/min (4.1 m/s)
- Davies 1998, pp. 73–74.
- Wings Over Kansas, The Saga of Smiling Thru, Edward Phillips, 18 February 2008 
- Skyways, January 2001, p. 62.
- "Travel Air S-6000-B." The Delta Heritage Museum. Retrieved: December 6, 2012.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N9038]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "Travel Air, NC-9038, 1928, #4 6-B (6000)". National Air Tour. Aviation Foundation of America, Inc. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "Kachemak Air Service Travel Air S6000B - NC9084". Alaska's Seaplanes. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "Travel Air 6000B NC9084 Restoration 2002". Alaska's Seaplanes. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N9084]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N8112]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "1929 TRAVEL AIR S6000B". Alaska Aviation Museum. Alaska Aviation Museum. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "Flightline - Main Hangar". Alaska Aviation Museum. Archived from the original on 19 August 2013. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N8865]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N9842]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N9966]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
- "Travel Air, NC-377M, 1929 #24 6000". National Air Tour. Aviation Foundation of America, Inc. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "1929 Travel Air 6000 A". Platinum Fighter Sales. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N377M]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N627H]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N411N]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
- "Delta Air Service Travel Air 6B Sedan". Delta Flight Museum. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "FAA REGISTRY [N8878]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- Pelettier 1995, pp. 41–42.
- Lednicer, David. "The Incomplete Guide to Airfoil Usage". m-selig.ae.illinois.edu. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Travel Air 6000.|
- Auliard, Gilles. "Time Machine." Air Classics, April 2006.
- Davies, R.E.G. Airlines of the United States since 1914. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998. ISBN 1-888962-08-9.
- Hagedorn, Dan and Antonio Luis Sapienza. Aircraft of the Chaco War, 1928-1935. Atglen, Pennsylvania: Schiffer Publishing Co., 1996.
- Pelletier, A. J. Beech Aircraft and their Predecessors. Annapolis, Maryland, USA: Naval Institute Press, 1995. ISBN 1-55750-062-2.
- Sapienza, Antonio Luis (June 2000). "Les premiers avions de transport commercial au Paraguay" [The First Commercial Transport Aircraft in Paraguay]. Avions: Toute l'Aéronautique et son histoire (in French) (87): 45–47. ISSN 1243-8650.
- Taylor, Michael J. H. Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions, 1989.