Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Monocoupe Fly-In Brings Variety of Aircraft to Creve Coeur Airport This Weekend

By Carmelo Turdo
The Monocoupe Club Fly-In, held every other year, was again hosted by Creve Coeur Airport in St. Louis County this weekend.  The event strives to unite Monocoupe owners from around the country at this Midwest Aviation event, located amid the award-winning antique aircraft collection of the Historic Aircraft Restoration Museum.  The Monocoupe series was born as the outgrowth of a 1926 design by Don Luscombe and Clayton Folkerts and produced by the Central States Airplane Company in 1927.  In 1928, production became more systematic with the backing of maternal grandson of John Deere, W. L. Velie - maker of carriages and later automobiles.  Now produced by the Mono Coupe Division of the Velie Motor Company in Moline, IL, the aircraft became known as the Velie Monocoupe.  The aircraft was designed as a cabin recreational aircraft, but soon made a name for itself by winning the National Air Races held in Los Angeles, CA by flying a close circuit at over 100mph.  Following Velie's death in 1929, the company was in some turmoil until 1934, when the Lambert Aircraft Corporation in St. Louis took over production until 1940.  Troubled company history continued, as the assets of several succeeding entities were moved to Florida in attempts to continue production of Monocoupes until the mid 1950s.

While the flying performance of the aircraft is generally good, the ground handling after landing, especially with the 110 "clip wing" model, were poor and led to many serious accidents.  One exhibitor told The Aero Experience: "All of the Clip Wings have crashed at some point...Now all of the Monocoupes and the pilots are getting older, and the pilots  don't want to take the risks.  Fewer and fewer planes are coming to the club reunions, and more are becoming museum pieces."  On Saturday, four Monocoupes were on the ramp, and none flew due to the winds from the weather front that was moving in by mid afternoon.  Nonetheless, it was great to talk to Monocoupe owners who were in attendance and those who flew other aircraft types that day.  Three Monocoupes are on display at the Historic Aircraft Restoration Museum at Creve Coeur Airport.     

Here are some views of the Monocoupes and other aircraft at Creve Coeur Airport Saturday:

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