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1-26A RESTORATION
By Andy Kecskes

This website is a description of  the restoration of a Schweizer 1-26A (N3865A) single place sailplane started in December 2009.  The project was completed in February 2014, the paperwork completed with the FAA in April with the first flight on May 4th at Sky Sailing, Warner Springs, CA.   It took this amount of time since I was working a full time job with only weekends to work on the glider.  As I approached retirement I started reducing my work hours to spend more time on the project, eventually working half time giving me a week at a time for the restoration.  The website was built as I went along and now is complete.  I am now fully retired and looking forward to doing as much flying as possible after meeting other family obligations.  The local group of 1-26 owners go on a number of soaring safaris over the summer months and hopefully I will be able to participate in 2015.  The sailplane flys very nicely with the various upgrades my father built in back in 1963 are still in place (you will see these as you work your way through the sections).

Background:  65A was originally built from a Schweizer Aircraft kit by the Associated Glider Clubs of Southern California (San Diego) and licensed in 1958.  It was flown extensively by the club members throughout southern California until it suffered a total destruction crash at which time my father purchased the wreckage on the trailer in November 1962 for $256 (that trailer is still being used today).  He and I rebuilt the glider over the next year and he flew it again for the first time in December 1963.  We flew it at many of the soaring sites in southern California until I entered the Air Force before getting drafted.  He continued to fly it until selling it to Harry Baldwin in 1970, keeping it in San Diego.  Harry won four 1-26 Championships and set a class straight out distance record of 432 mies with it in 1981 that has not been broken to this day.  After several attempts over the years I was able to buy it back from Harry in 2009 in order to bring it back to life since it was last flown in 1999 when he started some repair work and recovering. 

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Updated:  10/14/14