Received an email this morning from Scotty Wilson with an update on their Bugatti project:
Good Morning from the frozen Southern Great Plains!
I just wanted to give you an update since our last visit. A lot has happened…
First, construction is going very well and we are still on schedule to fly the plane in May 2011. I am spending the winter building the horizontal stabilizer; rudder-vators; and working on cockpit details. Photos below.
Second, we went to Brussels in January to meet with other enthusiasts, to include the grand-nephew of Louis de Monge. As you may recall, de Monge designed the Bugatti 100P. While the airplane was Bugatti’s vision and carries his name, it was de Monge who was responsible for the plane’s extraordinary presence. Luckily, his family has several boxes of personal letters and period magazine articles that give us insight into de Monge’s life.
We also went to Riccione, Italy, to visit with GT Propellers ( http://www.gt-propellers.com/home.htm ). They share our passion for the airplane and offered to build two replica propellers for our Bugatti! These people are real pros and very sophisticated, making replica composite-blade props for Warbirds (Spitfires, etc.); Experimental-category airplanes like the Lancair; and Light Sport Aircraft. They also introduced us to an Italian company that makes components for motorcycles and is in the process of developing a 100 HP-class engine for Light Sport and Experimental aircraft.
Third, it appears that we have been successful – through Frederic Gasson – to establish an official relationship with the Schlumpf Museum in Mulhouse, France. The Schlumpf (The National Automobile Museum http://www.collection-schlumpf.com/en/schlumpf/ ) houses scores of Bugatti 100P drawings. While not final, we’ll get access to all drawings in return for displaying their logo in our communications. As an aside, Frederic has visited the EAA Museum and fondly remembers the tie he spent with Bauken.
Gregg and I will be back to Oshkosh whenever the weather warms a bit for some more work with the original airplane.
Best to you all!
Last fall Scotty Wilson and Gregg Carlson came to measure the airfoil of the wing for their replica project and are now interested in coming back to further their research - specifically to measure and photograph the landing gear, analyze the original paint so they can match it precisely and hopefully look into the inboard section of the right wing. In all their research they haven't found any photos of the right-side wing bay and are interested in it so they can examine a sprocket assembly attached to the aileron control system. Woody said the sprocket assembly is probably NOT part of an aileron trim system but more likely is part of a system to reflex the ailerons upward to reduce drag during high-speed flight. Sounds intriguing.
We'll keep you posted as we hear more but until then, look in your attic and ask your neighbor to look in their attics for any old Bugatti Racer photos. You never know where some old photos may be tucked away.
Here are the photos they also sent along. The replica control stick is a work of art!
Stabilizer spars in their jig; fuselage in background.
Gregg Carlson and Scotty Wilson with replica control stick.
Replica control stick machined by EAA member Chris Clemons (Capstone Machine, El Dorado, KS.)
Bugatti Exhibition in Brussels, Belgium. Ladislas de Monge – grand-nephew of the airplane’s designer – is on the right in the blue sweater. Frederic Gasson is in the center of the photo.
Alex Tonini (GT Propellers); Gregg Carlson with Spitfire prop blade.
Left wing bay. We think the sprocket assembly is NOT part of a trim system but is rather to reflex the ailerons upward as a drag-reduction measure. So far, I have not found any photos of the right-side wing bay.