The Planes: 1931 Pitcairn
Wingspan: 30' 1";
Rotor Diameter: 45';
Weight (empty): 2,100 lbs.
Construction Materials: Welded steel tube and fabric
fuselage; wood (ash and spruce) and fabric wings
Builder: Pitcairn-Cierva Autogiro
Company, Willow Grove, Pennsylvania
Number Built: 30
Engine Type: Wright Whirlwind, 9-cylinder,
300-horsepower, radial, air-cooled internal combustion
Engine Builder: Wright Aeronautical
Company, Dayton, Ohio
Maximum Speed: 120 m.p.h.
Maximum Range: 290 miles
The Detroit News Autogiro
This plane took aerial photos for the Detroit News. The log
book includes visits to fairs and expositions all around the area – it
might have made more news than it recorded.
The main safety feature of the Autogiro was that
you could navigate to the ground even if you stalled
out. But it still took skill to land safely.