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Rare WWII Gliders Coming to AirVenture
July 12, 2018 - The Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum in Hood River, Oregon, has announced that it will be bringing two extremely uncommon aircraft to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2018. Both aircraft are gliders that were used to train pilots to fly larger troop-carrying gliders like the Waco CG-4, and both were developed from more common powered aircraft of the day.
The first, a 1943 Piper TG-8 (TG for training glider), was developed from a converted Piper L-4, essentially the military version of the J-3 Cub. The TG-8s feature an expanded three-piece cockpit area in lieu of the engine and firewall, and incorporated spoilers and a nose skid. Of the estimated 250 that were built, only a handful survive, in large part because Piper, with the support of the Civil Aeronautics Administration, offered a kit to inexpensively convert surplus TG-8s to J-3s after the war.
The other glider is a TG-6, which was derived from the Taylorcraft L-2. Like the TG-8, it’s a three-seater, built to accommodate an instructor, a beginning student, and an intermediate student. WAAAM’s example is the prototype, which was reportedly converted from a stock L-2 in about a week and a half.
Both of these rare training gliders are airworthy and are expected to fly at various times through the week.