M.Goodall, A.Tagg British Aircraft before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
PORTE & PIRIE glider (Lts. J.C. Porte and W.B. Pirie RN, Haslar, Portsmouth)
Two reported attempts to fly the glider at Portsdown Hill from a trolley on a track both resulted in damage. Porte continued with his Demoiselle monoplane, and later became a director of the British Deperdussin Co. A project to fly the Atlantic in a Curtis s flying boat was stopped by the outbreak of war. In wartime he was the leading figure on flying boats at Felixstowe. The glider had equal span wings, notable for the heavy stagger, the trailing edge of the top wing being vertically in line with the leading edge of the bottom wing. Four pairs of N-shaped interplane struts spaced the gap, with ailerons mounted on each outboard pair. There were also rudders on each vertical strut at the wingtips. An elevator was carried on the tail booms and the machine rested on two skids on its launching trolley.
The two officers sat side by side in the center section, Porte controlling the elevator and ailerons, possibly also serving as elevators, by means of a lever, while Pirie operated the rudders directly by a cable.
P.Lewis British Aircraft 1809-1914 (Putnam)
Porte and Pirie Biplane
The Porte and Pirie Glider was a two-seat side-by-side biplane designed and built during 1908 by Lts. J. C. Porte and W. B. Pirie, two naval officers of the submarine depot at Haslar. Intended to be fitted later with a J. A.P. engine, the machine was tested first as a glider at Portsdown Hill, Portsmouth, Hants., on 17th August, 1909. After running down the hill on its wheeled carriage the glider pitched forward, turning over and throwing the occupants out. The biplane wings were very heavily staggered, with the leading-edge of the lower in line vertically with the trailing-edge of the upper.
Flight, September 25, 1909
A Glider at Portsmouth.
ON the evening of the 17th inst. a glider was tried on the Portsdown Hills by two young naval officers, Lieuts. Porte and Pirie, attached to the Haslar submarine depot. The glider is of the biplane type, as seen in our frontispiece, but with the upper plane placed a good deal in advance of the lower one. There is no elevator in front, but elevating and steering planes are placed between the main planes at the ends, and there is a tail. With both officers seated in it the machine was mounted on a trolley and run along a temporary track, but it failed to rise, and eventually pitched forward and collapsed, both officers being thrown out but escaping unhurt. The design is particularly promising, and we have little doubt that after a few lessons have been learnt a practical machine will be evolved.