the Stearman I looked at did not have a radial engine, if it had, I would not even have made the trip to go get it... way too expensive for a 33 y/o lad working on $600/month salary to even think about taking care of.
I didn't even try to start it up, once I saw it, I knew it had to be completely redone, the fabric was almost falling off. It might have made it to Texas, but then it might not have either.
This brings to mind a tiny short story about my trip to Nashville then.
No internet ya know, just talk to a tower guy somewhere and get a weather report.
I called in to Nashville center as I was about 50 something miles out and asked how it is there?
"oh, some'ers about 5 miles visibility looks like bud and spotty but okay for you to come in."
Well, at 50 miles out, I was on top of overcast at about 10,000 feet and what they said did not match what I could see.... but, they said to come on over, it will be "just fine" when you get here.
uh huh, well, I cross the Mississippi river and still overcast, but I can see parts of the river.... called back, and "it is okay here, come on in"..... by this time I am about 2,000 feet and solid under-cast clouds below me.
Followed their ADF signal until I passed it and the needle went behind me. I cannot see the airport. Call them again, "oh, uh, it is jest a bit thickish here now, but we can see the sun"
more likely, they can see a bright glow where the sun is, but I can't see down at all.
So, I tell them I am going to circle a 360 west of them until I see a spot of ground, and then I am going to drop straight down, vertically, for them to watch and be sure no one comes up on my tail.
They say "huh? how can you do that?" I told them to just watch for me to fall out of those clouds.....
Then I spotted a hole big enough I could see almost half of the airport, and I stuck my left foot to the floor, crossed the controls, and went straight down like a rock.
Pulled out at about 300 feet and sure enough, it is was just like they said, 5 mile visibility, and the sun looks bright...
Rolled up to the hangers and got a call from the tower, "uh, how did you do that?"