RECOVERED N9707C Flap Actuator/Jackscrew
from Dawson, Texas
Recovered five miles Southest of Main Crash Site along the course of Jet Route 87 (back towards Houston) Near the town of El Dorado, Texas.
Gearbox at Right; flap attachment point (on left). One flap bracket remains showing where five of the eight fasteners have been torn off with only three remaining.
On right, Gearbox shows a "white" light color which reflects where the explosive residue (identified as C-4) was sprayed on the gearbox.
When recovered, the flap actuator/jackscrew indicated that the flaps were lowered 10 degrees prior to the in-flight break-up. This is consistent with a normal decent into Dallas Love Field for a Lockheed Electra on J87.
Heat of Explosion froze and "welded" the jackscrew at the 10 degree position to this day.
Rubber rings on either end of the gear box are the points where the gear box is mounted in the wing cove (Lockheed diagram will be added). These rings, as you can clearly see, are undamaged indicating surrounding wing broke away before actuator gearbox and jackscrew seperated.
The actuator dropped with the gear box swinging down from fore to aft and pulling the flap off with the jackscrew.
The flap attached to this jackscrew/actuator was also recovered, and is now in the posession of a family member of one of the accident victims.
Lockheed Diagram of Flap and Actuator/Jackscrew System. I have concentrated on the right inboard flap and actuator.
From Page 24 of the 1969 "N.T.S.B. Report"
States that BOTH inboard jackscrews were recovered, and all flaps by the NTSB team.
NOT TRUE. These pictures of the Right Inboard Jackscrew PROVES the REPORT WRONG. (The Jackscrew pictured above was recovered in Dawson in 1989, NOT 1968). AND, the INBOARD FLAP was recovered with the jackscrew in 1989.
The First Observed Event by witnesses in and around Dawson on May 3, 1968 said the explosion was "near the aft cargo door and resulted in the subsequent seperation of the cargo door, aft inboard right wing, right flap actuator (pictured above) and inboard flap."
It has been reported that analysis of the recovered flap showed similar explosive residue found on the above flap actuator/jackscrew. The explosive residue is consistent with the by-products of the plastic explosive known as C-4.
If the Wing had seperated as stated in the 1969 N.T.S.B. accident report, then the flap and actuator/jackscrew should have come down with the right wing, NOT recovered 3 1/2 miles from the location of the right wing in the debris field.
The flap actuator/jackscrew is warehoused at a secure location in a small Northeast Texas town for now. For security reasons, this physical evidence is not located in the Dallas/Fort Worth area where are offices are located. Similarly, the "right inboard flap" is located at yet another secure site in Southeast, Texas.
Photos Courtesy of the people of Dawson, Texas and Lockheed/Martin Aircraft. Photos taken in June 2006
The rest of the Dawson crash documents are located on the "Internet Archive" and the "1965" Page.