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STITS SA-3A PLAYBOY – N8KK

Ray Stits designed the SA-3A Playboy in 1952, which became the third of Ray’s fifteen airplane designs. Ray built the Playboy in just three months during the fall of 1952. After testing and modifying, Ray made plans for the plane available. This particular airplane is one of the aircraft responsible for getting homebuilt aircraft going in the United States. The Playboy was a very popular early design.

The fuselage was constructed of chromoly tubing and was covered with fabric. The wings were made of spruce spars, wood ribs, and were also fabric covered. The prototype SA-3A was powered by an 85 hp Continental engine. The Playboy featured the Stits Bullet Nose Spinner, which was built from a kit manufactured by the Stits Aircraft Corporation.

In 1955, Ray was ready to move on to another design, and sold the prototype SA-3A. The Playboy fell to a few different owners, and switched registration numbers. When Michael Coutches obtained the airplane, he wanted to keep the original N8K registration number, however, N8K was flying on the tail of a Temco TT-1 “Pinto” at the time, so the Playboy was re-registered with the number N8KK. Later, the Playboy was obtained by Joseph Lee, who sold the SA-3A to Paul Poberezny and Art Kilps around 1971. Paul and Art sent the airplane to Ray Stits, who restored his prototype Playboy to its original configuration. Ray also repainted the airplane to the original red and white sunburst with inverted letters on the right side.

The prototype Stits SA-3A Playboy was officially donated to the EAA AirVenture Museum in 1973.

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