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YESTERDAY IN Part 1, we examined two of the aircraft illustrated by Douglas Rolfe in his Airplanes of the World: 843 Planes, From Pusher to Jet 1490-1954. Here are two more meeting the selection criterion of having been GMax projects of mine, and a third that even predates GMax.
1930 Blériot 125. Aircraft enthusiasts are familiar with Blériot’s Type XI, the first aeroplane to cross La Manche/The English Channel. Less familiar, perhaps, is his 125, flown in 1930 and looking like sci-fi at the time.
The 125 was the culmination of Louis Blériot’s passion for carrying passengers in the air. True, his 1908 Type XI was a single-seater (occasionally converted to dual tandem seating). But by 1911, he had built and flown a flying Limousine for Henri Deutsche de la Meurthe. Near the end of his career (he died in 1936), Blériot devised a commercial airliner, the innovative twin-boom, tandem-engine, 125.
Alas, first flown in 1931, the craft displayed less than satisfying flight characteristics. Subsequent development failed to achieve certification and the sole prototype was scrapped in 1934.
1934 De Havilland Rapide. Rolfe chose to illustrate the D.H. 86, an early version of the company’s Rapide series.
I was attracted to a later variant, the D.H.89A Dragon Rapide as flown for the Prince of Wales, ever so briefly King Edward VIII prior to his abdication to marry Wallis Simpson.
1935 Luton Buzzard. Rolfe identified this as “Another small British light plane, 25/35 h.p.” He included the Luton on a two-page spread replete with odd aircraft. (The Waterman Arrowplane is on my GMax to-do list.)
The Dunstable Sailplane Company reasoned that its products would be more practical were they not requiring a tow to soaring altitude. A logical solution for G-ADYX was fitting a secondhand Anzani two-cylinder, the engine originally powering a Morgan trike sports car.
Its Little Red Blockhead pilot identifies this as a pre-GMax effort. Early on, modeling software had severe parts limits that fostered his cubist characteristics.
It’s good fun to use the Anzani to attain an altitude of 2000 ft., say, then switch it off and go thermal hunting. My Microsoft Flight Sim has a default Schweitzer sailplane; so it can be done. ds
© Dennis Simanaitis, SimanaitisSays.com, 2022