View Full Version : Need to ID a Paragon by American Propeller Co.

02-19-2017, 05:20 PM
I have finally been allowed to hang an old propeller at our beach house. :D
It is by American Propeller Co., branded Paragon.
8 foot diameter,
4 foot pitch,
1800 RPM
150 HP
8 bolt holes
design 61E
serial number 7113-3
pictures attached
The hub used to wall-mount it is my creation not authentic.
Can anybody help me find out what kind of plane it was designed for. Actually there are no marks on it that suggest it was ever mounted on a plane or used.

02-20-2017, 08:17 AM
Interesting. Most Paragon's were manufactured around the time of WW1. They continued at some level after that but then went out of business I think in the late twenties. (I recall a document in the Library at NASM where the company offered to donate a full truckload of props to the museum, but I don't recall the exact date.)

Do you have a close up of the decal?

02-22-2017, 12:01 PM
I don't have a close-up of the decal handy - it's at our other house at the moment; will try to obtain next visit. However, when I bought this off a neighbor 30 years ago it was in horrible condition. Someone had varnished it badly and it was all cracking and peeling - even had varnished the spot-polished metal leading edges . Against all curators' common sense I stripped it carefully and applied a clear coat. The decals remained in place enough for me to touch them but they can no longer be considered original. Each blade had the word "PARAGON" inscribed in an ellipse and superimposed on bird wings. The wings were arranged opposite each other to resemble the way propeller blades are pitched.

02-23-2017, 04:45 PM
This may not be a Paragon propeller at all then. There were reproduction decals available at one time. The stamping looks authentic, but that can be performed with the right set of stamps as well.

"Something" doesn't seem quite right . . .

03-07-2017, 03:47 PM
As I said, I committed the unthinkable act of restoring it but it had been "restored" badly before with bad varnish including on the metal. Here is a closeup of the decal which showed enough detail for me to trace over it. However even the coloring I applied 30 years ago has faded. Also, it is not the same as other examples of the "winged" decal because it lacked the "American Propeller Company" inscription around the perimeter of the ellipse. I also included a shot of the metal leading edge. I'm very distraught to learn that it is possibly not an authentic Paragon. It seems so well crafted = e.g. the metal leading edge to not be real.

03-08-2017, 08:24 AM
Actually, I don't consider it "unthinkable" to refinish a prop that's already had an attempt at "restoration". Once it happens the first time it will, of course, never be original again, so whatever is done to it to improve its appearance is fine, IMHO.

I think the metal sheathing is perfectly "real", but also has the appearance of a much more modern propeller than what is usually associated with Paragon, but as I say I don't know when they actually ceased production and what style of propellers were being produced by them at the time they did cease. Many manufacturer's decals were modified over time, and for all I know the Paragon trademark may have gone through a brief period where it was no longer the American Propeller Manufacturing Company but was made under some other name.

So it may very well be an authentic Paragon. I just have no idea when it may have been made or what it was used on.

03-08-2017, 09:24 AM
One other thought, perhaps of no significance. There is some dissimilarity to the method of stamping on separate parts of the propeller, with some of the info stamped in "lines" and the other more of an "arc". I'm not sure exactly what to make of that, but it "might" suggest that one of the stampings was added after the original manufacture.


Also, knowing that there were over 25,000 Paragon propellers manufactured by the end of WW1, it's hard for me to make sense of a serial number of 7113-3 on a prop that can only be considered "modern" in design.


03-08-2017, 09:50 PM
I really do appreciate all the effort you're making and value your comments. After viewing hundreds of propeller designs on this site and elsewhere I, as an engineer, have noticed the trends in the designs and also conclude that this propeller is a more modern design and similar to propellers seen on WWII planes as they transitioned to metal construction. Thank you for all your interest. I will still enjoy just looking at it on the wall! Let me know if you uncover anything further such as a catalog of serial numbers. Warm regards, Richard Draper.