The Navion was designed as a civilian aircraft and adopted my the military as the L-17. There were no differences between civilian and military on the production line. Military were finished with canvas interiors, military radios/paint and a control lock. My Navion was civilian delivered to Markle Steel Comapany in Houston, TX in 1950. 52 years later in 2002 I bought it and returned it to Houston and based it at DWH.
It was delivered as a B model, Super 260, sporting a geared Lycoming GO-435 engine with 260 hp. When I purchased it the engine had been upgraded to a Lycoming GO-480 with 295 hp. In 2008 I did a major engine conversion to a 300 hp Continental IO-550B.
We say that no 2 Navions are the same because there are so many modifications possible. Mods on this plane include the engine/mount/cowling, extended slope windshield, center stack instrument panel, tip tanks, baggage aux tank, baggage door, 1-piece side windows, retractable rear step, flap gap seals, full nose gear doors, speed ramps, Palo Alto tail, straightened vertical, Rangemaster seats and modern avionics. The nose art “Rescue Waggin’” was designed by Jerri Bergan of Victory Girls to play off my call sign “Big Dog” and my practice of hauling my flying buddies and parts around when their planes have problems. The mission flags represent a sample of the rescue missions we’ve made and lives up to the the Navion’s military role as a go anywhere, haul anything liaison aircraft.
|Registration Number||Date of Manufacture|
|North American L-17 “Navion” , Ryan L-17||33 feet 5 inches|
|Overall length:||Empty weight:|
|27 feet 6 inches||2104 pounds|
|Gross weight:||Fuel capacity:|
|3100 pounds||1000 miles|
|Oil capacity||Engine type:|
|12 qts||Single 300 hp Continental IO-550B piston engine|
|Propeller type:||Max Speed|
|McCaulley, 3-blade||203 mph|
|Rate of Climb||Cruise Speed|
|1800 fpm||160 kts|
|Service Ceiling||Number of Crew|
|22,000 feet||Pilot, three passengers|
|Number Built||Number Surviving|
|246 L-17, ~2300 civilian||~800 Navions of all types|
This is a flying restoration. I like to fly every weekend so I don’t take it down for long. The longest down time was in 2007/8 for the engine conversion. It was down for 13 months, 10 days.
The engine was replaced with a Cont. IO-550B FWF package removed from an A-36 getting a turboprop conversion. It was installed using the Druett STC wich replaces the basket mount with a tubular mount and fiberglass cowling. At the same time I was able to secure a NOS SS firewall to replace the rusty galvanized one. The FWF pkg came with all the piston instruments which were range-marked. That dictated an instrument panel refurb. With great access due to the firewall replacement all wiring was replaced. In addition an extended slope windshield was installed.
Printable QR Codes for: Greg Young’s Navion L-17 “Rescue Waggin”:
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