Model Airplane News
december, 1935

Model Airplane News Cover for December, 1935 by Jo Kotula Howard DGA-6 Mister Mulligan

Howard DGA-6 "Mister Mulligan"
Model Airplane News Cover Art for December, 1935
by Jo Kotula
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The Howard DGA-6 was a pioneer racing plane, nicknamed Mister Mulligan. It was the only airplane ever designed for the specific purpose of winning the Bendix Trophy cross-country race from the west coast to the site of the National Air Races in Cleveland. Mister Mulligan was designed to fly the entire length of the race nonstop and at high altitude, and thus changed the way in which long distance airplanes were designed. The plane was the brainchild of Ben Howard and Gordon Israel.

 The Howard DGA-6 Mister Mulligan    The Howard DGA-6 Mister Mulligan      The Howard DGA-6 Mister Mulligan

Howard DGA-6 "Mister Mulligan"
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The sole DGA-6 was constructed in 1934. It featured a steel tube fuselage with a plywood-skinned wing. While en route to the 1934 air races, oxygen and fuel system problems caused an off-field landing which damaged the gear and propeller. The aircraft could not be repaired in time and missed the 1934 season. In the 1935 Bendix race the aircraft was loaded with 300 gallons of gasoline, 30 gallons of oil and oxygen equipment for two giving it the ability to fly for 7 hours at 22,000 feet. Howard and Israel won the Bendix with a speed of 240 m.p.h. Mulligan was good at pylon racing as well -- Harold Neumann flew at 220 mph on a five mile course that required sharp reversing turns around a pylon and won the Thompson Trophy. No other aircraft had ever won both races. The DGA-6 also had the distinction of being the only racer during the golden age of airshows to evolve into a successful commercial production aircraft, first as the DGA-8 and DGA-9, and later the DGA-11 and DGA-12.

Unfortunately, the DGA-6's days on the national air race scene were limited. The next year, Howard and his wife were injured when Mister Mulligan lost a propeller blade and crash-landed near Crownpoint, New Mexico during the latter stages of the 1936 Bendix (New York - Los Angeles) race. Howard recovered from the serious injuries resulting from the crash, but lost a leg in the accident and Mister Mulligan was destroyed. 34 years later, racing enthusiast, Bob Reichardt tracked down Mister Mulligan's crash site and was surprised to find most of the parts were still in usable condition, protected by local dry, mountain climate. With the salvaged parts as patterns, Reichardt was able to recreate Mister Mulligan.

Here is a video of a large scale model of the Howard DGA-6 "Mister Mulligan":

Click Here for more information about the Howard DGA-6 "Mister Mulligan".

The DGA-6 was an instant hit and Cleveland rushed to offer a kit for the airplane. This design has proven to be very popular with folks who build gasoline powered models. As shown above, it flies very well just like its real-life counterpart.

 Cleveland Model of the Howard DGA-6 Mr. Mulligan     Cleveland Model of the Howard DGA-6 Mr. Mulligan     Cleveland Model of the Howard DGA-6 Mr. Mulligan

Cleveland Model of the Howard DGA-6 "Mr. Mulligan"

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You can buy the plans and patterns that will enable you to make this model right now. Click Here to go to the exact location on the Cleveland Website to get them.

Cleveland Site Location of the Howard DGA-6 Mr. Mulligan

"Mr. Mulligan" at the Cleveland Site
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Cleveland was not the only source of information about Mr. Mulligan. In February of 1937, Popular Mechanics Published a two-part series on how to build a tetailed gas-powered scale model of this plane:

Popular mechanics plans for a model of the Howard DGA-6 Mr. Mulligan

Modeling "Mr. Mulligan"
February, 1937
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Joe Ott was widely recognized as an expoert designer of model airplanes. We have scanned the two part article and make it available as a free ".pdf" file.

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