Retired experimental plane donated to McMinnville museum - KPTV - FOX 12

Retired experimental plane donated to McMinnville museum

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An experimental and influential airplane is the latest exhibit at the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum.

Rockwell Collins donated the North American Sabreliner 50 to the McMinnville museum. It will go on display next week.

The 1964 model plane was acquired by the company in 1976 and was utilized for many significant flight test projects leading to innovations that are used today in commercial and military avionics, said Stewart Bailey, Evergreen's curator.

Rockwell Collins made many modifications to the Sabreliner 50, including its unique-looking, custom-made interchangeable large nose. It was built to house airborne weather radar technology that is now used in more than 5,000 aircrafts around the world.

Rockwell Collins decided to retire the Sabreliner because of its age and associated cost of maintenance.

The aircraft was flown for 8,000 hours and made more than 5,000 landings.

"We are very thankful to Rockwell Collins for retiring the aircraft to the museum and giving us the opportunity to educate visitors with the aircraft," Bailey said. "We understand how influential this airplane was for the aviation industry."

The plane joins more than 250 other aviation and space artifacts at the museum.

Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum is located at 500 N.E. Captain Michael King Smith Way, McMinnville. For more information, go to

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