Frankfort TG-1 - (scan - 1997)

Stan Corcoran, mid-westerner relocated to southern CA, built single-place Cinema, named in honor of movie industry, 1938. Several built, but major demand was for 2-place Cinema II designed 1940 as high-performance trainer. Frankfort Sailplane Co. marketed both designs, and when AAF put out glider requisitions, they rushed to sign contracts for 2-place trainers, plus 8- and 15-place troop gliders, being assigned TG-1, CG-1, and CG-2 designations May 41. Army had already begun to train pilots using Schweizer 2-place designs; despite the fact Schweizers had been flying over 6 months in military markings, company not politically astute and was assigned TG-2 designation. Premier designation (TG-1) did not help Frankfort, as aircraft were delivered late and continually failed structural and flight tests; CGs were cancelled. After changing structure, enlarging tail, and eliminating all- flying surfaces, few TG-1a models delivered. Several pre-war civilian aircraft conscripted and became TG-1b, c, and d models. Schweizer (TG-2/3a) and Laister-Kauffman (TG-4a) successful in producing 2-place trainers based on pre-war sailplanes, and each delivered over 150 aircraft to Army. (Schweizer (LNS-1) and PrattRead (LNE-1) also delivered about 100 trainers to Navy for stillborn Marine program). Army needed aircraft faster than small companies could gear up to produce, and Aeronca produced 3-place glider based on their tandem seat lightplane with engine replaced by another cockpit, shorter landing gear, and spoilers. Became TG-5; Taylorcraft (TG- 6) and Piper (TG-8) each produced variations for almost 1600 more training gliders. (Bowlus designs abundant 1941-2, but considered too delicate for Army use). Civilian gliders conscripted and given designations up to TG- 34! Winner of troop glider was Waco--built a few 8-place CG-3s; but over 14,000 15-place CG-4a model delivered (along with heavy duty CG-13s and short- winged CG-15s).

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