- THE BEECHCRAFT BONANZA.
Later 1950 Parker Pen Co. added to their fleet one of the first models of the 35 series of Beechcraft Bonanza, Continental E-185 hp. engine so that more staff company could travel to one time. The Company had his private pilots on staff for the Beech “51” so hires Arthur G. Hodge, pioneer of aviation in the county and manager of the Janesville Flying Service to pilot the twin Bonanza on a quick trip to Chicago or elsewhere. Sometimes it was flown by Roger Zentz, a private pilot of Janesville.
Better known as Beech Bonanza this monoplane with its characteristic V-tail was single-engine four-to-six-seat light touring. In its equipment it had a complete set of primary flight instruments, turn and bank, rate of climb and all, propeller electrically controlled, night flying equipment, a new Motorola Avigator radio, throw over control wheel, and windshield defrosters, landing flaps, electric retractable tricycle landing gear. It had a starting price of $ 7,345.
The press of the time picked it up like this: “Parker Pen Operating Own Airline. A «private airline» set up in an effort to weather snarled ground transport, is now in operation between supply points in the eastern states and the Parker Pen Co. Its twin-engine Beechcraft transport and its Beechcraft Bonanza into daily runs which have a week’s time in deliveries. The reason for the rush, according to Willis Rabbe vice-president in charge of manufacturing is that introduction of a new butane lighter and holiday demand by the Christmas trade have necessitated a speed-up in procedures”(1).
According to material released by the company maximum speed is 184 mph. being cruising speed 170 mph. and a service ceiling of 20,000 ft. Fuel economy 9.5 mph. and a normal range of 750 miles.
The Beech Bonanza weight 2,105 pounds when empty and can carry a useful load of 1,295 pounds. Twenty-six feet in length and with a wingspan of 33 ft. with a scientific quiet sound-proofed cabin with luxury touches, smart leather seat caps with armrest for all passengers.
- THE LOCKHEED VENTURA PV-1.
In March 1952 Parker Pen Company incorporated a converted Navy Lockheed Ventura PV-1 bomber into its fleet.
After WWII operation and ownership of executive plans raise steadily thanks to converted surplus military aircraft that contributed greatly to the development and modernization of business flying. Among them, many Ventura were modified as high-speed executive transports. The earliest modify and remanufacture the Lockheed Ventura medium bomber into a high-performance long-range business aircraft. The PV-1 Ventura was fast, roomy, tough, and had exceptional range what, during WWII, the U.S. Navy used them to raid northern Japanese islands from bases in the Aleutian Islands. They were developed from prewar Lockheed aircraft initially designed to serve small airlines or big corporations.
The company in 1952 owns three planes, a Beechcraft Bonanza, the twin engine Beechcraft D18S Parker “51” and this Lockheed Ventura, operates them with the precision of a small airline(1). Pilot Lee Haynes and copilot Bob Hansen belonged to the Parker employee staff
The Ventura was a twin-engine powered by two radial 2,000 hp. Pratt & Whitney. In the military version, it had a 65 ft. wing-span, a length of 51 ft. and was trained for a load of 7,100 pounds. Its maximum speed was 315 mph with a normal range of 950 miles with a 24,000 ft. service ceiling. There were civilian versions that allowed 8,500-pound load and increased their range to 2,000 mi. carrying a full load.
Lee Haynes, civil pilot with 23 years of experience, and Bob Jensen, Parker´s co-pilot from 1950 and a former flight supervisor with the CAA, co-pilot, were in charge of flying the Ventura.
The Parker Lockheed Ventura was luxuriously converted for civil use by Remmet-Werner of St. Louis, Mi. Its luxurious and comfortable interior, designed by famous expert Maria Bergson of famed industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss´ office- can transport up to eight passengers.
The press reported in this way two of Parker Ventura’s first services: “The Warren (Wisconsin governor) family was flown from Chicago to Janesville in the new Parker Pen Co. plane, a twin engine Ventura, piloted by Lee Haynes. At the airport the small crowd of spectators was augmented by several photographers who formed a semi-circle at the planets door. The trip from Chicago required only 28 minutes. Press coverage of the visit here indicates how much interest is being shown in the primary next Tuesday. Besides photographers, reporters from several major newspapers and wire services covered the event (4).”
“As part of a program to acquaint dealers with Parker operations and personnel, three groups of people from leading, franchised dealers have been guests recently of the Parker Pen Co. The two groups who made a flying visit here last week were from Cleveland and St. Louis. Parker Pilot Lee Haynes flew to Cleveland early in the morning in order to bring the group to Janesville in the Parker converted Lockheed Ventura by 9:30 am. After conferences, plant tour, luncheon at the Janesville Country Club and introduction into company executives the group was flow back to Cleveland. The following day similar group of leading buyers from St. Louis was entertained by the Pen Company. John G. Mack and A.V. Foster merchandising manager conducted the groups on their tour (5)”.
- “Plane fleet pays for Parker Pen Co.” (July 6, 1952). The New York Times, 5.
- Photo collected from a 1952
- Aviation Week (December 10, 1951), p. 82.
- “Warren Family Janesville Agrees” (March 27, 1952). Janesville Daily Gazette, p. 16.
- “Parker Dealers Flown to City” (September 2, 1952). Janesville Daily Gazette, p. 4.
- “Business Flying” (March 18, 1957). Aviation Week, p. 166.s