Butch Walsh's Grand
Champion Stinson This page created 4/30/00 Updated
9/1/2006 Click on images for a larger
Butch and Carol Walsh take
off from Minocqua, Wisconsin (ARV) on their way to Oshkosh 2000.
Photo taken on July 23, 2000
by new owner Charles Hauser.
Butch Walsh of Arrington, Virginia
passed away on May 11, 2006. He was perhaps the premier Stinson restorer
in the World. His 108-3, NC6233M (converted to a 108-5) won the Grand
Champion Classic Award at Sun 'n' Fun 2000 and Oshkosh '99. It has won
numerous other awards since its completion in 1999. Butch said he restored this plane to
honor the late George Heinley, the old Franklin engine master. NC6233M was
once owned by George. Butch later sold 33 Mike to Charles Hauser who keeps
the plane in Wisconsin.
I had the opportunity
to fly with Butch during the parade of flight at Sun 'n' Fun 2000.
Here are some photos:
Parked on the burnt grass
at Sun 'n' Fun, awaiting takeoff for the parade of flight.
Here are two interior shots.
Notice the original Halicrafters radio to the left. It's really just
a clever false panel, removed with two screws. Once removed, the
avionics trays are uncovered and the Garman GPS/Comm and the transponder
can slide in. The vintage microphone, though functional, is just
for show. For flying, Butch uses a headset and a portable push-to-talk
switch velcroed to the yoke. On the right you can see the Franklin 180
installation. This engine was certified in the Stinson and the model
designation for the aircraft was then 108-5. Notice that the battery has
been moved out of the engine compartment to offset the weight of the constant
speed prop. You can also see the split cowling that makes maintenance
possible without removing the prop.
On the left, downwind at Sun
'n' Fun, behind a biplane with air show smoke. On the right, short
final at Lakeland for a perfect wheel landing.
More photos of NC6233M, sent by Charles
Hauser, who refers to himself as the "custodian of Butch's NC6233M." The
last three photos are of the run up of the Franklin 180 during an annual
inspection just before Oshkosh 2005. Butch is at the controls in these
photos. Charles comments: "I think the photos with the cowl off show how
nicely the 180 fits the airframe. This airplane is a joy to fly. Really smooth