The Aeronca L-3B
Our company operates with a 1943 Aeronca L-3B/O58B 43-27079 O58B12173
"The Liaison series actually began when Aeronca with other light plane manufacturers were invited by the Army to participate in field maneuvers in Texas in July 1941. The light planes were well accepted by the field commanders. The Army Air force then purchased twelve light planes including four Aeroncas. The four, designated YO-58, were basically a T (tandem) model. Special rear windows and rear skylight were incorporated, as well as a 6V electrical system with a wind driven generator. The engine was a 65hp Continental A65-8 with a Freedman-Burnham ground adjusted propeller. Maximum weight was 1,150lbs (USAAF Serial #s 42-456 through 459)
This order was followed by twenty O-58A. These were basically a 'TAC" air frame with full cabin greenhouse. the door incorporated a top hinged window. Two way radio with trailing antenna, special instrument panel was installed, incorporating switches, fuses and ammeter. The engine was still the A65-8 with a Freedeman-Burnham propeller. Maximum weight was increased to 1,260lbs. This order was completed in late 1941. (USAAF Serial #s 42-7793 though 7812)
Next came the O-58Bs which were re-designated L-3B in July 1942. The aircraft was essentially the same as the O-58A but the propeller was now the wooden fixed pitch Sensenich and a wind driven generator and radio were included." From Aeronca A Photo History. Bob Hollenbaugh and John Houser.
A total of 701 L-3Bs were produced in four series.
USAAF 42-14713 through 14797 ( these retained the Aeronca "CA" serial numbers) :
USAAF 42-36075 through 36424:
USAAF 42-38458 through 38497:
USAAF 43-26754 through 27253: ( the last series increased the maximum weight to 1,300lbs) (our own Aeronca is from this last series 43-27079).
During this time Aeronca also produced 499 L-3Cs which were the same as the L-3B except they did not include radio equipment.
USAAF 43-1471 through 1960 (the original order had the USAAF serial #s 42-60281 through 60770).
The USAAF also impressed fifty civilian Aeronca aircraft and gave them the USAAF serial #s 43-2809 through 2858. ( these included L3-E (65TC Defender Continental 12 impressed): L-3F (65CA Chief 19 impressed): L-3D (65TF Defender Franklin 11 impressed): L-3G (65L Super Chief Lycoming 4 impressed): L-3H (65TL Defender Lycoming 1 Impressed): L-3J (65TC Defender Continental 1 impressed): JR-1 (3 Navy L-3C).