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BiPlane From Pearl Harbor Movie  
User currently offlineIN2FLYING From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 71 posts, RR: 0
Posted (13 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 7821 times:

Can anyone tell me what the model,year red biplane was featured in the closing scene of the movie Pearl Harbor? Any information on websites in purchasing used biplanes would also be helpful. I imagine they are extremely difficult to find and are very expensive.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you


10 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineCV990 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (13 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 7761 times:


That biplane it's a Boeing Stearman, a very well known trainer used during the 40's. You might have a chance to still find some for sale, many were built and many are preserved now.
Good luck

User currently offlineCV990 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (13 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 7743 times:


Just to add, hereunder it's a Boeing Stearman, same red colour!

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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © AirNikon

Looks nice on that colour!!!

User currently offlineIN2FLYING From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 71 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (13 years 1 month 2 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 7720 times:

Wow. Talk about terrific help. Thanks. I will begin to look for one. I know this sounds crazy, but I would love to learn to fly the good ole fashioned way, "Stick and rudder". Any guess on what one of these beauties will fetch $$$ wise. I'm guessing big big dollars.

Any links would be appreciated if this topic stays alive.


User currently offlineIllini_152 From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1000 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (13 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 7731 times:

Good luck. If you want to learn to fly the old fashond way, get thyself a Cub or Champ to learn in. Then after you get some time move into the Stearman.

For one, flying from the backseat of a biplane like that brings new meaning to the word "forward visibility" The nose blocks it looking ahead, and the wings block it looking side to side!

For the other, you REALLY don't want to abuse such a classic airplane in training. Believe me, you will make hard landings, ground loop, ect. You'll also be pressed to find an instructor that can teach you in either the Cub or the Stearman, though the Cub or Champ will be easier to find.

Purchess price isn't that far out of line for them when you consider what they are. A pre WWII trainer and/or warbird. They can be found in trade a plane for anywhere from $60 to $180 thousand, with most in the $90 to $120 thousand range. When you consider a new Skyhawk will set you back a cool $180 grand, and a used one is $35 to $70 grand, that's not too bad.

Where it would get you in training though is operating cost. They drink gas like water, you're looking at around 15-20 gph with the stock 250hp motor, more if you have a bigger engine. Don't know about oil, but if she's like most radials, its probibly 1/2 gph or so. And don't forget, it IS an old airplane. There havn't been parts made for them in probibly 40 years. You'll have a hard time finding a shop to work on one for you, and many parts will have to be scavenged or fabricated right then and there.

If you still want to learn in one, more power to you. The Cub and Champ, btw can be purchessed for $16 to $35 thousand, and burn around 5 gph. Finding mechanics that know how to work on them will be easier, mainly because they are so simple to work on. You'll still run into the parts problem but at least one company is sill selling new Cub parts. My dream is to buy a Stearman one one day and restore her myself to flyable condition.

- Mike

Happy contrails - I support B747Skipper and Jetguy
User currently offlineIN2FLYING From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 71 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (13 years 1 month 1 week 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 7705 times:


Thanks for the real handy info. You bring up some real solid points. I think what scares me the most is the availablity of the parts and the qualified person to repair and maintain it. Most likely I will begin my quest for my pilots lic. via a regular ole Cessna 152-192 at the local airport.


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 30207 posts, RR: 57
Reply 6, posted (13 years 1 month 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 7693 times:

I think that at the very least the Connie that powers the Stearman is STC'd for Autogas, so that is going to make a serious dent in the fuel bill. The motor was the powerplant for the WWII Sherman tank, so I don't think you are going to hurt it.

I am not sure about the Lycomings that some left the factory with, But I suspect that they are also autogas STC'd

User currently offlineThirtyEcho From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 1720 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (13 years 1 month 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 7704 times:

That is one lousy airplane in which to begin flight training today; don't even think about it. If you just want a ride in a red biplane, see if you can find one and ask the owner to take you up sometime.

After you have your PPL and a few hundred hours you might want to realize your dream and get some dual in a Stearman. If you are sufficiently smitten by it, and the owner's insurance permits, see if you can find one that you can rent; unless you are Mr/Ms Moneybags, owning such a ship is an expensive proposition.

The only Stearman that is available in my area for what you want is for dual instruction only, with the owner aboard, and runs $125 per hour. I'd bet that rates vary widely across the country.

User currently offlineTEDSKI From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (13 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 7676 times:

I remember one of those biplanes was in TORA TORA TORA, in the scene where a female pilot was training a young male student when all of a sudden they were surrounded by Japanese planes heading to Pearl Harbor.

User currently offlineN751PR From Japan, joined May 2002, 1250 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (13 years 1 month 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 7628 times:

Ah yes I remember that scene TEDSKI! Now I'm surprised the pilot was still sane after being surrounded by those aircraft! Whatever happened to it anyways?

"Ladies and Gentlemen it's happy hour. You will get two approaches for the price of one."
User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 7
Reply 10, posted (13 years 1 month 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 7663 times:

I just saw an ad for a Steerman for sale....$95,000.00. Not too bad.  Smile

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