Thanks to Steve Berkman, via Allan Lockheed, for this update on Steve's and Tom Haueter's Lockheed Atlair project:
My partner Tom Haueter and I have been following the progress of the Vega and are impressed at the progress they have made with it. Several years back, we were contacted by John Magoffin who I believe purchased it from the guy who bought it from Bob Taylor. Magoffin wanted to share some production costs for parts common to both models.. mainly the skins and T-stringers. I did go down to Arizona to look her over, get a better perspective of her construction, and discuss possible further cooperation with John. Nothing came of that, as we had enough on our plates with the Altair, but we did stay in touch and subsequently shared a custom order for the T-stringers. We were pleasantly surprised a while back to hear that she is now being restored under very capable hands and have been following their progress on the internet. Considering the Vega’s condition when I last saw her, my hat is off to those guys.. they’re doing an amazing job.
As for the Altair, things are moving along, albeit slower than we’d like, but the momentum has been picking up. I now have two volunteers who come up once a week, and Tom will be retiring in June, so we’re looking forward to moving at a faster pace in the coming months. In the last photos I sent you, there is one shot of the 2nd setup of the fuselage. We have now progressed to the 3rd and final set up (see attached photos). Everything has been primed and is being riveted together and we are starting to work on the internal structures and control elements.
Tom has also begun working on the vertical fin in his spare time. Two things that keep slowing us down, are the need to construct fixtures and tooling, and problems with the old blueprints. As we progress more and more with the project, we’re finding out that we don’t have a consistent set of prints, but rather a collection of different versions of the Altair. For example; our main drawing of the fuselage assembly is for a single control version.. the rear cockpit was strictly for a passenger. We assumed we were working with a dual control version, and didn’t realize until things were riveted together that we had to go back and undo some work. We’re now aware of the problem and are trying to sort things out before the fact, rather than after.