Ryan on final approach
Rearwin Speedster
Ryan STA - Swanee's Mink

I'm a member of the Pikes Peak RC Club in Colorado Springs. I joined in the late '80s. Colorado Springs has always been a "military town" with Fort Carson, Peterson AFB, and Air Force Academy located here. It's a beautiful place, and it's long been common for folks who were once posted here to return permanently when they retire. Ryan 1

We had a large group of these returnees in the club when I joined (still do), including a few who had flown in WWII. One, a fascinating gentleman named Bill Gates (honest!) became a friend.

Bill had flown just about everything there was to fly while deployed during the war (P38s were his favorite), and I used to enjoy listening to his stories in between flights on Saturday mornings at the club field. Ryan 2

One such story was about how the Ryan he'd owned came by it's name. Bill met and married his wife Swanee while stationed in Europe. They moved back to the US after the war, and set up housekeeping, as young couples do. Bill, being a loving husband, also began saving up to buy Swanee a mink coat as a gift.

But, as luck would have it, he found and bought a surplus Ryan instead. To try and keep the peace, he named it Swanee's Mink. I saw a couple of pictures of the original, and fell in love with the airplane. My rendition is a tribute to my friends Bill and Swanee.

The plans are my own, as I wanted to build it as close to scale as I possible could. While gathering documentation, I was very fortunate to find and make the acquaintance of Ev Cassagneres. Ev was the curator of the Ryan company archives until his death in 2012.

From Ev, I was able to get copies of original factory drawings of the Ryan. I drew my plans from these and some of the more accurate 3-view’s that were available. It took me 5 or 6 years to complete, but I think it was more than worth it. I still need to make molds for the spats and pants, and I will some day. Ryan 3

Technical details:
Scale 1/4 (3 inches = 1 foot)
Wingspan 90.0 inches
Overall Length 90.25 inches
All Up Weight A hair over 22 pounds
Power E-flite Power 160
Battery 2(parallel) x 5S1P 5000 mAh LiPo
Prop Xoar 22 x 10
My Scale Fleet
Ryan STA
Rearwin Speedster
Northrop Gamma

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