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GREAT LAKES 2T-1A SPORT TRAINER – N77RF

NO CURRENT PHOTO OF THIS AIRCRAFT IS AVAILABLE

The Great Lakes Aircraft Company designed the 2T-1A Sport Trainer in 90 days. In 1928, the Great Lakes plant had the capability of producing ten 2T-1As per day. Approximately 206 airplanes were produced from 1929 through 1932.

The Sport Trainer was probably one of the most distinctive looking and most easily recognizable airplanes of its time. The fuselage was built up of welded chrome-moly steel tubing, faired to shape with metal formers and metal fairing strips and fabric covered. The wings were built of solid spruce spar beams and ribs stamped out of duralumin sheet. The leading edges were covered with “dural” sheet and the completed framework was covered with fabric. The 2T-1A was powered by a 4 cyl. inline air-cooled 100 hp engine.

The Great Lakes Aircraft Company went out of business in 1936, and in 1963, Harvey Swack of Gates Mills, Ohio, obtained the design and manufacturing rights to the Great Lakes. From 1963 through 1971, Harvey sold 367 sets of plans for the 2T-1A to be built as an experimental homebuilt. In 1972, the design and manufacturing rights were sold and moved to Wichita, Kansas. Manufacturing facilities were set up at Wichita, where two new models were introduced and a total of 251 Sport Trainers were produced.

N77RF was originally purchased by Rosmond Blauvet directly from the Great Lakes Aircraft Company in 1933. Over the course of its career, the Sport Trainer fell through more than fifteen different owners. In 1984, Robert Fergus completely rebuilt the 2T-1A, a project that lasted more than two years. Eventually, Walter Hill acquired the Sport Trainer, which he donated to the EAA AirVenture Museum in 2003.

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