Airplane Stabilizer Tail

DATE - 1943

In conjunction with the Molded Plywood Splints, Charles and Ray constructed various molded plywood aircraft parts for the U.S. Navy. Part of Charles and Ray’s experimentation with molded plywood included producing airplane stabilizer tails, fuselage, and other aircraft parts for manufacturers such as Vultee Aircraft.

Additional Information

The Eameses had to create larger, more complex versions of their original “Kazam! machine” as well as new tooling made to prescribed aircraft specifications. They also found that forming the large plywood sections required a tremendous amount of pressure and precise control over factors such as humidity and curing times. Charles and Ray’s success with aircraft parts was what they often called a learning-by-doing process. Ultimately, it assisted them in their ongoing quest to create high-quality, low-cost molded plywood furniture.

The team worked night and day to meet production deadlines. In addition to creating tail sections and gliders, they made blisters from one enormous piece of wood, which many had considered an impossible endeavor. The production of molded plywood aircraft parts was eventually discontinued and replaced by aluminum.

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