The Navion was originally designed at the end of WWII by North American Aviation for the civilian market, with the thought that wartime pilots would come home and continue flying with their families and friends under more peaceful conditions, but the postwar boom in civilian aviation did not materialize to the extent manufacturers envisioned.
However, it also attracted the interest of the US Army Air Force, who over the years ordered several versions (L-17A, B, & C) to be used as a liaison aircraft and trainers for university-based ROTC flight programs.
Ryan Aeronautical Company acquired the design in 1948, continuing the line until 1951. Originally sporting a 205 hp Continental E-185 engine, by the end of the era, Ryan was equipping Navion B models with 260 hp Lycoming GO-435 or Continental IO-470 engines.
A single prototype Navion ‘Model 72’ was also developed to compete for the US Air Force trainer aircraft procurement, a contract eventually awarded to Beechcraft as the T-34 Mentor.
While the Navy did not order L-17 aircraft, several L-17s did conduct carrier takeoffs & landings during the Korean conflict.
|Date of Manufacture
|Ryan L-17B Navion
|Rate of Climb
|Number of Crew
I acquired N5392K in 2016, and have since made numerous modifications to it, to include removing the wingtip tanks (added in the late ‘50s), adding an under-seat auxiliary tank, upgrading the panel with modern IFR avionics, and stripping/re-painting it in colors commemorative the USS ESSEX Carrier Air Group during WWII. It was painted by Circle W restorations in East Berlin, PA and the “Jealous Jenny” nose art is of my wife, circa 1993.
Printable QR Codes for: ‘Jealous Jenny':
Please read before printing the Avery style labels