2023 Restoration Review
The Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum Restoration team has been hard at work. Last year our team completed the restoration of the de Havilland Venom, a post WWII twin boom British fighter jet with a wooden cockpit, which is now on display in the Aviation Museum. They also continued the painstaking process of rebuilding the wings on our F4D Skylancer.
What’s Ahead for 2024?
F5D Skylancer: The team’s next projects include the ongoing restoration of our Douglas F5D Skylancer. The F5D is a experimental derivative of the F4D Skyray.
Our F5D is one of only a few remaining F5D’s. It once belonged to NASA and it was flown by several astronauts, including Neil Armstrong. Once its wings are reinstalled the Skylancer will be ready for the prep and paint process.
F-117 Nighthawk: The newest aircraft to join the Evergreen Fleet is the F-117 Nighthawk, Stealth Fighter. Our F-117, Known as the “Lone Wolf,” recently arrived from its long-time home at the Tonopah test range in Nevada. Our F-117 was the first to deliver munitions in both Operation Just Cause in Panama and in Operation Desert Storm.
The Lone Wolf was stripped of its stealth coding and was demilitarized, which means that all the top-secret components and the leading & trailing edges of the wings were removed before shipping.
After reinstalling the wings and tails (a.k.a. tail feathers), the crew will next fabricate the leading edges and the remaining removed portions of the aircraft. The entire project will take a couple of years to complete. Stay tuned for updates and come out to the museum to check out our progress.
C-47 Skytrain: Lastly and likely the biggest news is that our C-47 Skytrain (Dakota) will be coming back into the “shop” for some needed TLC. The C-47 has been outdoors for several decades, going back to the 1990’s when it was on display at OMSI.
Our Skytrain has the distinction of having flown several missions during WWII including the invasion at Normandy (D-Day) and Operation Market Garden, the invasion of the Netherlands.
We expect the restoration of the Skytrain to begin in early June.
You can see our restoration team has their hands full for the next few years. But, you are always welcome to come out to the museum to watch these aircraft as they go through the long process of restoration and renewal.