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Old 09-05-2016, 06:31 PM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2016
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Default Gipsy Major Prop - Looking for background and general info (Canada)

Hi Propeller-heads, I recently inherited a Gipsy Major prop from my Grandfather. I don't know too much about antiques, but have some knowledge of airframes and basic avionics being a former Flight Sargent in the Royal Canadian Air Cadets.

Here are a few photos of the prop: http://imgur.com/a/7BAAs

I can post more detailed photos of the markings if they are not clear.

My Grandfather was an aircraft mechanic at CFB North Bay during the 1940's. The story he told me and my cousins was that the prop, which was in his basement in Saskatchewan when I was a kid, only flew for a handful of hours. It was pulled off because there was a concern that the glue used in lamination was faulty and therefore the risk of a delam was significant. Therefore the prop was removed and placed into storage. As I understand it, my Grandpa "appropriated" the prop before he finished his service and brought it back to the family home sometime prior to 1947. He always spoke of building a clock into the hub, but thankfully that never came to pass and by my inspection the prop is in excellent condition save for a few scratches around the tips.

I'd love to know more about the prop if anyone has any knowledge of these things. To be clear, I have no interest in selling the prop but would be interested in knowing the value.

A couple of things that may not be clear in the photos:
-it's about 6ft in length
-the two tone paint job is yellow and grey
-the leading edges have a metal coping
-there are two tones of wood (dark and light)
-it's a lot lighter than it looks
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Old 09-05-2016, 07:49 PM   #2
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I'm guessing that it's for a Gypsy Moth. I think it's the only "5222" on this page (D.H. 5222) and it does fit a Gypsy Major. It was probably manufactured under license from DeHavilland.

Although some of these stories that accompany props are not credible, the slight indentation along a radius in the hub supports the claim that it was mounted briefly and removed. Props that have been mounted for a period of time will have a more defined indentation in the hub where the wood has expanded from moisture against the unyielding metal hub. Props that have never been mounted will usually have a completely smooth face on the hub.

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Old 09-06-2016, 06:06 AM   #3
Bob Gardner
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: The North of England
Posts: 1,636

It's a lovely looking propeller, probably from the delightful DH Rapide used by the RAF as a communications aircraft, and probably also by the RCAF. The decal on the blade is, I think, that of the Laidlaw Lumber company who were a major maker of propellers for the RCAF.

With kind regards,

Bob Gardner
Author; WW1 British Propellers, WWI German Propellers
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canada, gipsy

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