In 1969 Charles Boddington built a replica BE2c biplane for the film “Biggles Sweeps the Skies”. The aircraft was taken to the United States where it was subsequently crashed. In 2004 Stephen Slater and Matthew Boddington, the son of the film replica’s original constructor, became joint owners of the wreck and returned it to the UK, where the airframe and engine were given a complete restoration, starting in March 2005. The steel tube fuselage needed major repairs from the front of the rear cockpit forward. All four wings had to be rebuilt using new spruce spars although a commitment was made to use as many original components as possible commensurate with safety, a decision which inevitably increased the restoration time. The aircraft’s de Havilland Gipsy Major engine, which had been modified to run in an upright configuration, was also fully rebuilt. Assisted by a number of friends, Stephen and Matthew spent six years on the restoration, which led to Matthew making the aircraft’s first post-restoration flight in May 2011.
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