Teen pilot becomes youngest to fly around the world
4D model template of Waikiki Beech N80040.
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Beechcraft Bonanza (Waikiki Beech N80040) template of 4D paper airplane
Bill Odom After Record Flight (1949)
(Skill index 6)
Civil utility aircraft
First flight: Dec. 22, 1945
Production: >17,000 (1947-present )
In Jan., 1949, the 4th Bonanza to come off the production line was piloted by Captain William Odom from Honolulu, Hawaii, to the continental United States (2,900 statute miles), the first light airplane to do so. The airplane was called "Waikiki Beech"(N80040), and its 40-gallon (150 L) fuel capacity was increased (using fuselage and wing tanks) to 268 gallons (1010 L), which gave a still-air range of nearly 5,000 statute miles.
In March 1949, Captain Odom piloted "Waikiki Beech" a distance of 5,273 miles (8,486 km) from Honolulu to Teterboro, New Jersey, setting a nonstop record. The flight time was 36:01 hours, at an average speed of 146.3 miles per hour (235.4 km/h), consuming 272.25 US gallons (1,030.6 l; 226.70 imp gal) of fuel. After that flight, the airplane was donated to the Smithsonian Institution's National Air Museum, as the National Air and Space Museum was then called.
On October 7, 1951, an American congressman from Illinois, Peter F. Mack, Jr., began an around-the-world trip in "Waikiki Beech", on loan from the museum and reconditioned at the Beech factory, and renamed "Friendship Flame". He spent 15 weeks traveling through 30 countries (223 hours flight time). The plane was again refurbished in 1975 and returned to the National Air and Space Museum. It is still on display there, with both names painted on its sides.