Tuskegee Fairchild PT-19A returns to the sky

A trainer, once used by the famed Tuskegee Airmen, has flown again after two years of work by Commemorative Air Force Airbase Georgia

Fairchild PT-19A 42-83511 made a successful post-restoration flight from Atlanta Regional Airport in Peachtree City, Georgia, on January 18.

In a media release CAF Airbase Georgia leader Joel Perkins said: “This historic aircraft, originally used to train Tuskegee Airmen in World War Two, had flown for CAF Airbase Georgia for many years, but the leadership team decided it was time to take it apart and inspect, restore and repaint it. Re-skinning the aircraft with fabric and applying an authentic paint scheme took a lot of time, but our members were committed to recreating a piece of aviation history.”

The 1943-built aircraft was initially disassembled and inspected. Various parts, such as the tailplane, supporting wood structures and canopy glass were replaced before the historic machine was re-covered with polyester fabric, primed and repainted. Major Gen (Ret) George Harrison, an Airbase Georgia pilot, was in the cockpit for the Fairchild’s successful return to the sky.

Acquired by CAF Airbase Georgia in 2006, it has been modified with a closed cockpit like the later PT-26 to allow flying in inclement weather. The Georgia group also recently reached a milestone in their longer-term restoration of Boeing N2S-2 Stearman BuNo 03531, which has been at Peachtree since 2019. With the fuselage structure now complete along with electrical systems and wiring, other components like seats, control linkages and the firewall have also been installed, along with reconditioned landing gear.

Fairchild PT-19A 42-83511 is once again airworthy
Fairchild PT-19A 42-83511 is once again airworthy CAF Airbase Georgia