View Full Version : Help with prop I.D.

07-19-2014, 09:34 PM
Hello, I work at Selfridge Air National Guard Base, outside of Detroit, and I need your help in identifying a propeller that is hanging in the base operations lobby. I have used your prop i.d. guides, and used the search engine on the forums, to no avail.

It is a 99 inch prop,with eight hub bolts, blade width of about nine inches, and about 6 1/4 inches "deep" measured at the hub, as seen in the attached photos. The markings read "DES H701RH, NO 13560". Our base historian does not know it's provenance. Can you help me identify this? It would be nice to be able to give our visitors a more complete story about this fine piece of aviation craftsmanship. Thank you very much for any assistance!

08-05-2014, 09:23 PM
I looked a little closer and saw the following stamped on the metal sheathing, at the left end of the metal sheathing on the right side of the prop, as you look at the photo: "Patent no. 1,404,484, January 31, 1922". That number corresponds with a different invention; the sheathing is mis-stamped and should read 1,404,489, which was issued to Thomas Hamilton, of the Hamilton Aero Co.("HA"), prior to it becoming Hamilton-Standard. This suggests it could be a HA prop, unless the sheathing could be used on those made by other manufacturer's. My guess is that it came off of one the planes used by the base, back in the day.

08-06-2014, 12:44 AM
The few Hamilton props I've seen had patent stampings on the sheathing, so you're probably on the right track.

The only listings that I know of for Hamilton are actually listed as Hamilton Standard. They do begin with "H", but they are followed by 4 digits, not 3, and probably post-date yours.

10-10-2014, 05:33 PM
I found out that a SPAD VII at Wright Patterson AFB Museum originated out of Selfridge ANGB. I contacted them and this was the reply. The hunt continues....

Thank you for contacting the National Museum of the United states Air Force. We have reviewed the information you provided but have been unable to identify the propeller and its application from our files. This prop does not appear on the list of approved propellers, circa 1921. This is our best resource for that time period. Our next list appears in 1924, and again the H701 prop is not identified.

It is possible that the prop was acquired for the restoration and flight of the Museum's SPAD VII. The aircraft was extensively restored to airworthy status at Selfridge AFB, between 1962 and 1966, and painted in the colors of the 94th Aero Squadron. It was flown a number of times.

However, Selfridge is an old installation. The prop could have provenance to other early aircraft operated at the field.

The prop may also instead have had non-military provenance. Several Air Races were held at Selfridge a number of times in the early 1920s.

I suggest you contact the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum (NASM) for reference copies of these manuals. NASM maintains an extensive archive of aviation-related historical and technical data and may have better resources on file of 1920s-era props. You can contact NASM at:

Archives Division
Room 3100, MRC 322
National Air and Space Museum
Smithsonian Institution
PO Box 37012
Washington, DC 20013-7012
Phone: (202) 633-2320
Email: http://www.nasm.si.edu/research/arch/emailform.cfm