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99s Fly!

The Story of the Jim Moss Reproduction of the 1934 Gee Bee QED II

June 10, 2015


Greater Seattle and Western Washington chapter members with Rich Alldredge and Judy Moss by the Jim Moss reproduction of the 1934 Gee Bee QED II.

The Greater Seattle Chapter of the Ninety-Nines and The Historic Flight Foundation hosted an aviation event on April 11, 2015, at Paine Field in Everett, Washington. They invited all local 99s to join.

Historic Flight Foundation

We started by admiring the static displays of the beautiful Gee Bee QED II along with numerous other historic aircraft. The Gee Bee R6-H was the last in a series of racing and touring airplanes from the Granville Brothers. We get the name Gee Bee from the initials of that aircraft manufacturer. The original that Jim Moss chose to design the replica after was built in 1934 for the MacRobertson Air Race from Mildenhall, England to Melbourne, Australia, which had 20 contestants at the start, including the famous Jackie Cochran. Hers was nicknamed Q.E.D., for quod erat demonstrandum. (Of course, later Lt. Col. Jacqueline Cochran went on to become president of the Ninety-Nines during World War II, become the first woman to break the sound barrier, and set numerous other world records for speed, distance, and altitude.)

Jim Moss, an aviator, builder and visionary, had the inspiration to build the grandest of the Granville Brother's creations, the QED. Together with a team of skilled volunteer craftsmen (and eleven years of work and dedication), Jim's vision came to fruition. The process was incredibly painstaking, as they had no existing, flying airplane to use as a model, and had to design almost everything from scratch!

Judy Moss and Rich Alldredge took us through the history of the Granville Brothers, Jackie Cochran’s participation in the MacRobertson Air Race, and the amazing process of rebuilding the airplane. Judy, Jim’s wife, explained how Jim’s passion for restoring airplanes developed, while Rich told us how he worked with the team on the QED II, did taxi and flight testing, and flew the “Big, Beautiful Beast” to both the 2014 EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh and the 2014 Reno Air Races. It was a very interesting presentation, punctuated by a hailstorm that thankfully did not damage the historic planes outside.

Members of both chapters attended, along with numerous Experimental Aircraft Association, Washington Pilots Association, and Women in Aviation members.

Lunch in Everett Washington

Before the talk, four members of the Western Washington chapter joined three members of Greater Seattle and two of our husbands for lunch at a Mexican restaurant.

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