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The Aeronca K was introduced in 1937, making its formal debut on the east coast at the New York Aircraft Show held in January and on the west coast at the Los Angeles Air Show in March. The plane was an immediate hit and dealers all over the country were filing orders. By November, Aeronca was building three Model Ks per day and the airplanes were shipped out, cramming six complete Aeronca Ks in a boxcar.

As a cheap, economical airplane, the Aeronca K soon appeared on the flight line of many flying schools, as well as in the hands of private pilots all over the country. The fuselage was built up of welded steel tubing, faired to shape with wooden formers and fairing strip, then fabric covered. The bench-type seat could accommodate two people and a baggage shelf behind the seat could hold up to 20 pounds. The cabin was completely enclosed with Pyralin windows and upholstered with serviceable fabrics. The wing framework was built up of solid spruce spar beams with spruce and plywood truss-type wing ribs. The powerplant was a 42 hp Aeronca E-113-CB engine.

In 1946, Tom Trainor bought out the complete Aeronca engine inventory from the factory, acquiring over 20 engines, a large supply of new parts, and six Aeronca Model Ks. He restored several of the Model Ks back to flying status, adding “factory optional” features such as a door on the left side and a five gallon auxiliary fuel tank located behind the seats. Tom won the Grand Champion Antique award with one of his restored Model Ks at the 7th National Aeronca Association Convention in June of 1994.

Tom enjoyed his Aeronca Ks for many years, and at one point, traded one of his restored Model Ks for EAA’s un-flyable Model K. Tom went to work restoring yet another Aeronca while his Model K went on display at the EAA AirVenture Museum’s Pioneer Airport.

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