EAAAirVenture OshkoshShopJoin

A biplane for the whole family?

Posted By:
Matthew Long
Homebuilder or Craftsman
122
Posts
12
#1 Posted: 5/31/2010 16:41:00 Modified: 6/2/2010 12:01:09

Daydreaming about the ideal big homebuilt project, I have come to the conclusion that a family-size biplane would be great fun.  By family-size I have in mind my own family of two adults, three kids and a dog, so let's say a capacity of five adults and  no luggage (which would allow some luggage if some of the seats are filled by kids) or four adults and a generous amount of luggage.

I am not looking to build a replica but would be interested in a modern design that takes some cues from a classic one.  I considered a cabin biplane like the Wacos or multiple open cockpits, but neither solution struck my fancy.  Two that did catch my eye were the classic DH83 Fox Moth with its open rear cockpit and front cabin, and the Thruxton Jackaroo with its removable canopy top.

Any other suggestion on potential inspirations for a big biplane project?

Cheers,

Matthew

Edit--Fixed links to be clickable.

 

 



******* Matthew Long www.cluttonfred.info
Daniel Plunkett
5
Posts
0
#2 Posted: 5/31/2010 17:54:44

A scaled down version of the Russian Antonov AN-2? This is a post WWII biplane that looks like a Beaver with two wings.



Hal Bryan
827
Posts
501
#3 Posted: 6/1/2010 17:17:35

Matthew, the sadly defunct(?) Lionheart would likely fit the bill:

See here:

http://www.oshkosh365.org/ok365_DiscussionBoardTopic.aspx?id=1235&boardid=147&forumid=178&topicid=3367

And:

http://www.airbum.com/pireps/PirepLionheart.html

Oh, and just FYI - I think you've got the Jackaroo and the Fox Moth a bit mixed up: Canadian-built Fox Moths (DH-83Cs) have removable canopies for the pilot's position, but Jackaroos canopies are fixed.

There's also the "Piper Staggerwing" - the pic links to a site that has an article, but that part appears to be down:

 



Online Community Manager - EAA
Michael Glasgow
Homebuilder or Craftsman
32
Posts
2
#4 Posted: 6/1/2010 18:17:43

Piper built a Staggerwing also?  I thought Beech was the only one that built a Staggerwing.



Long flights, smooth air, and soft landings,
Hal Bryan
827
Posts
501
#5 Posted: 6/2/2010 08:00:58

This was an experimental conversion, not an actual Piper model. The article below says it started out as a Tri-Pacer, was converted to a Pacer, then the second wing (other sources say it came from a Taylorcraft) was added.

It looks more like it may have begun life as a Colt, instead of a Tri-Pacer to me ... I actually saw this one at a fly-in last summer, and I'm embarassed to say I can't remember if it had 2 seats or 4., though the registration info and the old ad listed below say 2. The ad also states there were 3 built:

Here's a few more links:
http://www.airport-data.com/aircraft/N64RM.html

http://www.rosefield.net/articles.php?id=1

http://lists101.his.com/pipermail/swpc/2007-September/036328.html

I'm sure there are plenty of other people on this forum who know a lot more than I do.*

- Hal

*-about this particular airplane ...

 

 



Online Community Manager - EAA
Joe Norris
Vintage Aircraft Association MemberYoung Eagles Pilot or VolunteerHomebuilder or CraftsmanAirVenture Volunteer
328
Posts
137
#6 Posted: 6/2/2010 08:52:33
Hal Bryan wrote:

 

...the second wing (other sources say it came from a Taylorcraft) was added.

It looks more like it may have begun life as a Colt, instead of a Tri-Pacer to me ... 

 

Hal,

Good call on the Colt vs. Tri-Pacer.  Definitely a Colt wing, since it doesn't have flaps.  Also the Tri-Pacer fuselage would have had a rear door on the left side of the fuselage, and would have already had a second window on each side.  Of course this is not to say that the builder couldn't have altered the fuselage to remove the door an reshape the windows, but I'm guessing he started with a Colt.  This would also explain the two seats vs. four.

As for the lower wings, they are definitely Piper wings rather than T-craft.  The airfoil is totally different on the T-craft wing, to the point that you would be able to tell the difference in the photos.  Those wings are definitely Piper.  Besides, mixing the two very different airfoils on the same aircraft would have created some, well...  shall we say "interesting" handling issues.

Cheers!

Joe



Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate
Matthew Long
Homebuilder or Craftsman
122
Posts
12
#7 Posted: 6/2/2010 09:43:23
Hal Bryan wrote:

Oh, and just FYI - I think you've got the Jackaroo and the Fox Moth a bit mixed up: Canadian-built Fox Moths (DH-83Cs) have removable canopies for the pilot's position, but Jackaroos canopies are fixed.

 

By the way, Hal, I went back to double check my memory and the Jackaroo was in fact designed to serve as both a four-seat cabin aircraft and a single-seat agricultural aircraft and be convertible between the two.  A large flush cover with a single open cockpit was fitted in place of the cabin top.  I am attaching a sketch from the wonderful FLIGHT magazine online archive.  Again, if memory serves, only one was ever completed as an agricultural aircraft and it was converted to four-seat standard.

You are absolutely right that the Canadian Fox Moths had a canopy for the pilot while the British ones did not, though I think many acquired them after the war since it seemed like such a good idea.

This thread has come around to cabin biplanes, but I was looking for at least some of the passengers to be able to do the goggles-and-scarf routine.  Does anyone have any other inspirations to suggest, perhaps other early passenger planes with the crew in the open and the passengers inside?

Cheers,

Matthew



Files Attachment(s):
jackaroo_flight_23-11-1958_p810.jpg (109318 bytes)
******* Matthew Long www.cluttonfred.info
Hal Bryan
827
Posts
501
#8 Posted: 6/2/2010 10:44:03

Matthew -

Excellent digging - I'd forgotten all about the agricultural version! I was thinking of the standard 4-seaters which, unlike the Canadian Tiger Moths, aren't generally configured to be optionally flown open-cockpit.

As one who is lucky enough to have actually flown a Jackaroo ... I should know better! Touche'!

Here's a film clip of both variants:

http://www.britishpathe.com/record.php?id=66472

 

I wonder if anyone has ever done a scaled replica of the Boeing 40? Or, for the full-open experience, something like a New Standard D-25?

I'm going to be very curious to see what other ideas come up in this thread as well!

Cheers -

Hal



Online Community Manager - EAA
Matthew Long
Homebuilder or Craftsman
122
Posts
12
#9 Posted: 6/2/2010 11:55:52

Actually flown a Jackaroo...now I am jealous!

A homebuilt inspired by the Jackaroo could certainly be made truly convertible, either by making the canopy simple a cover over decked-in open cockpits like the Canadian Tiger Moths or by removing the top altogether and adding the decking and windscreens like the Jackaroo.  Sliding canopies strong enough to fly with them open or closed might be even better--mind the maps!

Of course, part of it comes down to approaches to the CG and CL positions.  I think the Jackaroo would work best with swept wings to put the cabane struts completely forward of the cabin.  The Fox Moth solution could have swept wings, of course, but it could also have straight wings, even unstaggered ones, and work fine since the  pilot's cockpit would be behind the mess in any case.

Cheers,

Matthew

PS--Or we could leave off one wing and go a different route.  How about a semi-scale Lockheed Air Express with a nine-cylinder Rotec 3600?



******* Matthew Long www.cluttonfred.info
Hal Bryan
827
Posts
501
#10 Posted: 6/2/2010 14:14:49

Mathhew, I like the way you're thinking!

While we're musing, how about the DH.61 "Giant Moth" - sort of a six-passenger Fox Moth with a 52' wingspan?

http://www.johnjohn.co.uk/compare-tigermothflights/html/dehavilland_photo_dh61.html

And, since you mentioned the Air Express, I'm just looking at my watch and counting down 5,4,3,2,1 ... waiting for my good friend and esteemed colleague Zack to chime in! All of us are watching the news in this thread closely:

http://www.oshkosh365.org/ok365_DiscussionBoardTopic.aspx?id=1235&boardid=147&forumid=178&topicid=3472

But Zack really has the Lockheed bug.

An Air Express would be gorgeous, and while you're at it, make some extra bits so I can make a low-wing Altair replica as well.



Online Community Manager - EAA
Joe Norris
Vintage Aircraft Association MemberYoung Eagles Pilot or VolunteerHomebuilder or CraftsmanAirVenture Volunteer
328
Posts
137
#11 Posted: 6/3/2010 09:07:34
Hal Bryan wrote:

But Zack really has the Lockheed bug.

Count me in on the Air Express fan club too!  When I win the lottery my first mission is to commision the building of an Air Express replica.  I've already got a line on the engine.  Just need someone to figure out how to build the fuselage.  I think it would totally awesome to show up at the fly-in in an Air Express!  Look out Frank Hawks!  Here I come!!!!

 



Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate
Mike Velemirov
Homebuilder or Craftsman
8
Posts
1
#12 Posted: 6/3/2010 20:06:33

The Piper Stagger wing started out as a Colt.  It was built (modified) By Russ Miller of North Benton Ohio, near Alliance.  I went to check it out as a replacement for my Champ about 20 years ago.  It had just been sold and flown out the previous day.   Russ Miller was an old time aviation fixture around North East Ohio and had his own airport named........What else..........Miller field.  He passed away several years ago.  I only saw the plane a couple of times and I'm pretty sure it was a one off.



Mike Velemirov
David Pitcairn
IAC MemberVintage Aircraft Association MemberHomebuilder or Craftsman
4
Posts
1
#13 Posted: 6/4/2010 00:30:35 Modified: 6/4/2010 08:27:21

Yes I am biased but how about a Pitcairn PA-1 Fleetwing?

Maybe put a Ranger engine under the cowling.  It is a 5 seater.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/4589949333/

The picture is mislabeled, it is a PA-1, not a PA-4.

David

 



Lou Whitaker
Homebuilder or Craftsman
2
Posts
0
#14 Posted: 6/4/2010 16:23:35

As someone already said 64RM was a homebuilt using Piper and yes Taylorcraft parts. It definately was a one off design. The builder was Russ Miller as also previously noted. I flew this ship many years ago when Russ brought it to a T-Craft Owner's Club fly in. it later was sold to someone near East Liverpool Ohio. A unique feature was flaps combined with drooping ailerons to enhance short field performance. Flew very nicely as I recall.  Not real great for aerobatics but you will have to talk to Forrest Barber about that story!  Lou W - N83LW / N36468 / and N21261.