The Langley 2-4, aka Langley Monoplane or Langley Twin twin-engine utility aircraft built in the United States in 1940. The aircraft was designed to make use of non-strategic materials in its construction and thereby avoid any shortages brought about by war. Two prototypes were constructed, one with 65 hp (49 kW) engines, and another with 90 hp (67 kW) engines. The second machine was purchased by the United States Navy and evaluated as the XNL-1, but the navy did not order the type.
The XNL-1 was sold as war surplus. The Langley was landing in Oklahoma in 1965 and after touch down the brakes locked flipping the airplane over and damaging the fuselage beyond economical repair.
John Pierce and Hurley Boehler had a Stinson 108 fuselage in their hangar without wings, so they decided to purchase the Langley and, following the accident, its wings, engine nacelles, and main undercarriage were mated to a Stinson 108 fuselage to create a one-of-a-kind homebuilt aircraft named the Pierce Arrow, model U-2, serial number 1.
Construction of the airplane occurred at Harvey Young Airport, Tulsa, Oklahoma. Several old timers including John Pierce, Hurley Boehler and Jerry Hinds participated. The name came from Hurley Boehler who said "call it a Pierce Arrow." Then Jerry Hinds, who was present, said "you two guys are crazy." From this conversation came the type (Pierce Arrow) and the model (U-2 as an abbreviation for "you two").
The Stinson 108 fuselage had the original Franklin engine removed and a nose cover added along with a new windshield.
The airplane was licensed in the experimental category as amateur built. FAA records for the airplane shows the approval for flight was issued on July 8, 1966. At this time the airplane was powered by the original engines installed on the Langley Twin, Franklin 90 Hp engines driving Flottorp 70KA54 fixed pitch props.
Toward the end of 1967 the engines were replaced with Lycoming O-290-D engines (115 Hp) driving Sensenich M74DM props. About 1980, the airplane was re-engined, this time with Lycoming O-320 engines driving McCauley 74-64 props.
One big draw back was the small fuel tanks of the Langley twin, only 17 USgallons each. To extend the range when flying cross country Jerry Hinds often shut down one engine. As fuel drained he would then restart the engine then shutdown the other engine.Normal cruise was 150 MPH, rate of climb was 2,000 FPM, service ceiling 18,000, and single engine best rate of climb 750 FPM.
FAA records show that it changed registered owners 6 times, with John Pierce being the registered owner twice.
One owner is listed on some forms but apparently it was never actually registered to Joe Kennison as there is no bill of sale or registration in his name. Jerry Hinds purchased the airplane in June 1981 and he was the last registered owner on the FAA records. At the time Jerry purchased the airplane it had 551 hours flying time.
Jerry Hinds sold the airplane about 1986). He traded the Pierce Arrow for a Swift to an individual in Aerococa, New Mexico. Apparently the new owner never actually registered the airplane.
The Pierce Arrow was flown in formation with a Pitts Special, named "Foxy Lady," owned and flown by Mike, a friend of Jerry Hinds. Jerry and Mike flew the pair in airshows in addition to a Swift Jerry owned.
This airplane appeared on the April 1974 cover of Plane and Pilot magazine.
The last information was the airplane was owned by Jimi Genzling of New Mexico.