Kristopher Hull sent us an update on the Spirit of St. Louis replication being built in Washington State:

Last summer I sent in some photos of John Norman's SoSL replica under construction, and I figured I would send in some more detailing the progress on it, and a plea for help!

In the past year, John has finished framing out the wings and has hung the wing on the fuselage to properly build up the attach fittings and hardware, as well as fit check everything. The main tank has been completed, and true to the original, it is made from riveted stainless with solder sealant. The tank was just recently installed into the fuselage to check its fit, and to assemble the support cradle. It fit with 1/8 inch clearance all the way around! The next steps are to complete the build on the wing and cover it, and completely strip the fuselage for final welding and paint before final assembly of all components this winter.

As for the plea for help, John is in urgent need of a set of 9 intake valves, all 18 valve springs, and a complete set of piston wrist pins for his original Wright J-5 Whirlwind engine. Without these, the project is dead in the water. If you know of source for these parts, please contact John Norman at or through his website.

Thank you!

Kristopher Hull
Photographer/mechanic - TEAM Spirit