15AC-366 – N1329H (25)

This eye-catching 1949 Aeronca Sedan has been based at Merlin Airpark (2VA3) near Amelia Court House, Virginia, USA, with owner Gene Hershey.

In early 2017, Gene emailed us the below photos and description and asked us to mark his Sedan for sale, which we gladly did: "This Sedan spent most of its life in Louisiana, and the first few years it was on floats, working as a fish spotter. The rear seat was removed and replaced with a large fuel tank, which enabled it to fly for quite a long time without the need to return for fuel. The log book shows many flights of 8 hours or more, flying off the Louisiana coast, locating schools of fish. This period of time was, when the Sedan accumulated the majority of its 5'000 plus hours.

In 1979, it was totally rebuilt and, at that time, the wings were taken apart, chromated and both spars reinforced, long before tha AD came out. Obviously, the spars have been checked to comply with the AD and no corrosion has been found. Instead of the large inspection holes that make the wing look like Swiss cheese, I drilled smaller 1-inch holes and used a borescope to comply with the inspection. Small, unobtrusive button plugs were installed to where, unless you are looking for them, a casual observer wouldn't notice they are there.

Because of its orange color it has "acquired" the name of "the Pumpkin", and it seems to be the pet airplane at local fly-ins. Most people don't know what an Aeronca Sedan is, but they know the Pumpkin. In fact, it recently won the dubious award of being the "rarest" aircraft at a regional fly-in!

Some specifics of this Sedan: AFTT 5173 hours. ETT 1497 hours. TSMO 1127 hours. Compressions over 80 psi: 77, 76, 76, 77, 78, 76. Spars have caps installed and chromated; no corrosion found. Sale will include a new annual inspection.

Within the last 50 hours, the following work has been performed: Overhauled Bendix mags, carburetor, brakes/wheels, exhaust rebuilt, cylinder base seals replaced, intake hoses and clamps replaced, new rocker arm cover gaskets, new tack drive seal and gasket replaced, new landing gear bungies installed, all scat hoses replaced firewall forward, replaced push/pull mixture control with vernier control, new main tires and battery installed.

Interior is good, headliner is quite aged and really should be replaced. Transponder mode C, intercom and radio check good, but wiring could be replaced for optimum operation. Inside/outside are 6/10. Does need some cosmetic work a few places, where the dope is pulling away from the fabric. Polished wheel pants in excellent condition. Left front seat is adjustable and toe brakes installed only on that side as well. 

Why selling? I mostly fly by myself or with one other person, and the Sedan is just too big of an airplane for that. Now that I am retired, I will be looking for a smaller, 2-place airplane that burns four and a half to five gallons an hour. The insurance costs are about the same for the Sedan as for a smaller 2-placer. That said, the Sedan is the love of my life. It is the most enjoyable airplane I have owned or small airplane that I have flown, and I have flown many in my 20'000+ hours. I will fly it to a new owner anywhere in the lower 48."

In July 2018, Gene got back to us: "The Ol' Pumpkin has found a new home. I had said, I'd fly the Sedan to any location in the lower 48 states, so, guess what – the buyer lives in the Portland, Oregon, area! I just finished flight planning (will be using the old paper charts, a pencil and a plotter; no GPS on board) and came up with 2'200 miles, 28 flight hours, based on a ground speed of 90 mph (prevailing winds notably out of the northwest, pretty much on my nose) and 230 gallons of aviation fuel; four days and three nights. Looks like N1329H will be joining a couple other Sedans out there in Oregon, which will be nice."

We wish Gene safe and fascinating flights across the USA and Rick blue skies and smooth landings, always! 

(This page last updated: 07/2018)

Click on the thumbnails to view the pictures in full size.

Photos © Gene Hershey

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