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Art Scholl’s Chip­munk

Three­time U.S. Aer­o­batic Team mem­ber, air racer, and movie stunt pi­lot Art Scholl pur­chased this de Hav­il­land (Canada) DHC-1A Chip­munk, his sec­ond, in 1968. Scholl’s mod­i­fi­ca­tions to the long-serv­ing Bri­tish trainer made it an al­most en­tirely new air­plane: the Pennzoil Spe­cial.

The Ly­coming GO-435 six­cylin­der en­gine Scholl in­stalled nearly dou­bled the horse­power of the pro­duc­tion Chip­munk’s 145 hp in­line de Hav­il­land Gipsy Ma­jor 8. Scholl cov­ered the sec­ond cock­pit to make his Chip­munk a sin­gle-seater (though his dog, Aileron, some­times ac­com­pa­nied him in the cock­pit at air­shows).

Scholl ex­panded the ver­ti­cal fin and rud­der by 25 per­cent to han­dle the uptick in en­gine torque, and for more pre­cise con­trol dur­ing slow aer­o­batic ma­neu­vers.

To make his Chip­munk more nim­ble, Scholl short­ened its wings, length­ened the ailerons, and re­moved the flaps, im­prov­ing roll per­for­mance.

Scholl, who en­ter­tained air­show au­di­ences for 20 years, died in 1985 while film­ing a stunt for the movie Top Gun. His es­tate do­nated the Pennzoil Spe­cial to the Na­tional Air and Space Mu­seum in 1987.

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