Roscoe Turner flying the Meteor
circles the last pylon and
wins the 1939 Thompson Trophy race.
flight reinactment

The Laird Turner Meteor

This was the the second of my 1/12 scale replicas of the Golden Age Of Air Racing airplanes. I purchased plans from Cleveland Model Supply, who at one time had the Laird Turner Meteor in kit form.(click on link below) It was and still is the most complicated model to build. It has over two hundred sixty pieces of balsa in the fuselage alone. Normally, I only use "store" bought wheels and pilots, which I have to assemble and paint. On this model I also purchased a dummy radial engine. See the photos below.

Roscoe Turner teamed with Matty Laird to design and build the Meteor. It was powered by the 1300 HP Twin Wasp Pratt and Whitney R 1830 radial engine that Turner had managed to "borrow" from Pratt And Whitney. That engine would eventually be a production line engine for the Grumman F4F US Navy fighters.

The Turner Meteor was the fasted airplane in the world at that period, only to be challenged by the Shoenfeldt Firecracker. It was faster than any military airplane untill late 1940.

Roscoe Turner, flamboyant as he was, still was probably one of the best pilots in the racing business. He was the best known and widely publicized of all the racing pilots. You can read more about Roscoe Turner and the 1939 Thompson Trophy race by clicking on the links below.

Roscoe Turner

Cleveland Model Supply

1939 Thompson Trophy Race

Click On Image To Enlarge


Meteor Airplane Restoration


Model Photo No. 1


Model Photo No. 2

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