Howard Wright E.N.V. monoplane
S.Ransom, R.Fairclough English Electric Aircraft and their Predecessors (Putnam)
Howard Wright 1910 Monoplane
At the 1910 Olympia Aero Show, the stand of Warwick Wright Ltd displayed a new single-seat tractor monoplane, which combined features of the Avis and the earlier 1909 Monoplane. The aircraft also incorporated a number of refinements to reduce drag: the frontal area of the fuselage was kept to a minimum, being dictated solely by the envelope of the 40 hp ENV 'D' engine which had been installed; all fuselage and undercarriage struts were of streamlined section; flat steel ribbons were used for wing bracing; the radiators were mounted full chord at the wing-roots and followed the contour of the wing; and the propeller was given a conical spinner. Otherwise the monoplane was of conventional construction, having fuselage, wings and undercarriage similar to that of the AVIs and a tailplane with end-elevators. A rectangular rudder was fitted, although initial drawings of the monoplane show that it was to have had one of triangular shape. The monoplane, in fact, was the personal property of Warwick Wright and had been built for him by his brother Howard to the design of W.O. Manning, in the month preceding the Show. After the Show, Warwick took the aircraft to the Royal Aero Club's grounds at Eastchurch, where he made the first flight with it on Sunday, 3 April. Soon afterwards, the machine was taken to Brooklands and there Warwick made further flights of increasing duration. On his last flight, however, Warwick swerved to miss some wandering spectators and in doing so ran into a boulder which marked the limit of the sewage farm. The boulder took away the undercarriage but the fuselage and wings continued, depositing themselves and the pilot unhurt in the soft ground of the farm. Apart from the effects on his olfactory sense, Warwick was unshaken by the experience.
Shortly after the appearance of Warwick's machine at Brooklands, another version of the monoplane was flying there piloted by Capt G. Ll. Hinds Howell, an employee of Warwick Wright Ltd. Hinds Howell's aircraft was distinguishable from Warwick's by its full-span elevator and the block radiator mounted below its ENV engine. This monoplane made its first flight on 26 March, 1910. Further good flights were made with the modified monoplane but it met with an accident through a cause similar to Warwick's. On Saturday, 17 September, 1910, the aircraft's wing was damaged in a collision with the propeller of a stationary Weiss monoplane. Hinds Howell, whilst taxi-ing his machine, had swerved to avoid spectators.
In the following month, T.O.M. (later Sir Thomas) Sopwith and another variant of the monoplane made their debut together at Brooklands. The aircraft arrived there from Battersea, on 21 October, and Sopwith spent little time taxi-ing it before attempting a straight flight. After covering some 300 yards in a more or less steady state, he stalled the monoplane on landing and in doing so broke the undercarriage and propeller. The machine was soon repaired. His next attempts, made with more caution, on Friday, 4 November, were rewarded with several straight flights and circuits. Five days later, flights ended with a burst cylinder-head, but on the following Monday, although the weather was bad, Sopwith went up again. Before the month was out, however, Sopwith had sold the monoplane in favour of an Howard Wright 1910 Biplane. In all major respects Sopwith's machine was similar to but slightly larger overall than Hinds Howell's, differing only in having a tailskid instead of a tailwheel and a single cabane strut in place of two wing kingposts.
Span 27 ft; length 29 ft; wing chord 6 ft 6 in; wing dihedral 2° 23'; wing incidence 9°; tailplane span 12 ft; tailplane chord 3 ft; elevator span each 3 ft; elevator chord 3 ft; rudder height 2 ft 6 in; rudder chord 3 ft; propeller diameter 6 ft; propeller pitch 2 ft 3 in; main undercarriage track 4 ft; wing area 160 sq ft; tailplane area including elevators 36 sq ft; total elevator area 18 sq ft; rudder area 7 sq ft.
Weight without engine 250 lb; weight empty 405 lb; weight loaded 605 lb.
Cruising speed 35 mph.
Howard Wright Demoiselle-pattern Monoplane
A single-seat single-engine tractor monoplane of Demoiselle-form was under construction in the Battersea workshops of Warwick Wright Ltd during January 1910. The fuselage, at that time, was almost complete and was a wire-braced structure of triangular-section with bamboo longerons and spacers of steel tube. Steel tubing, welded together, was used also to support the 30 hp Darracq two-cylinder water-cooled engine. The main undercarriage wheels were canted inwards, generally following the slope of the fuselage sides, and a small tailwheel was fitted. Construction progressed slowly, owing to work in hand on the Avis machines and Lascelles' Ornis, but by the beginning of the following February, the aircraft's heavily-cambered wings were complete and awaiting their fabric covering. The aircraft was completed in 1910, but no more is known about it.
Span 19 ft; length 21 ft; propeller diameter 6 ft 6 in; wing area 120 sq ft.
Weight loaded 255 lb.
Speed 48 mph.
Howard Wright Monoplane (Enlarged Avis)
A two-seat, enlarged version of the Avis was under construction by Howard Wright in March 1910. The aircraft was to be powered by a 60 hp Green engine, although an ENV engine could be fitted if preferred. This machine was referred to in the technical press of that time as the Antoinette-pattern Monoplane.
Span 42 ft; length 40 ft; total wing area 320 sq ft.
Weight without engine 500 lb.
Howard Wright Bleriot XII-pattern Monoplane
During the summer of 1910, Howard Wright completed a two-seat tractor aeroplane which had some of the features of the Bleriot XII Monoplane. It was powered by a 60 hp ENV engine mounted low in the fuselage. The propeller being driven by a chain. The pilot and passenger, also positioned low m the fuselage immediately aft of the engine, sat with their heads just below or on a level with the wing. The tail unit comprised a monoplane tail with end-elevators and a small trapezoidal-shaped rudder. Although the fuselage was made of wood and acetylene-welded steel-tube, construction of the aircraft generally followed the practice of the period. The undercarriage was the usual arrangement of wheels and skids with a sprung tailwheel.
Span 35 ft; length 46 ft; propeller diameter 8 ft; propeller pitch 3 ft 6 in; total wing area 360 sq ft.
Weight empty 1,100 lb.
H.King Sopwith Aircraft 1912-1920 (Putnam)
The aeroplane which first transmitted the 'aviation bug' (as the recipient himself once described the affliction) to Tom Sopwith was a Bleriot monoplane belonging to the American John B. Moisant, one of whose distinction was that of having known his mechanic, and also his kitten Mademoiselle Paree, from Paris to London in under three weeks. The circumstances of this bug-transmission to Sopwith have already been related, and the occurrence was an indication of just how international the sport and business of flying was becoming; so much so, in fact, that during the following year (1911) Sopwith himself was showing-off his own Bleriot - in America'
Yet this Bleriot of Sopwith's was not the first monoplane he had owned; indeed, his very earliest heavier-than-air craft (apart from his skimming boats) was a monoplane of British design and construction. This machine was a product of Howard T. Wright, an Englishman who had assisted the American-born Hiram Maxim in various experiments and enterprises-notably respecting what Maxim called his 'show apparatus', or 'Captive Flying Machines'. Jointly with his brother Warwick Wright. Howard T. Wright had started a coach-building and aircraft business in 1907, under a railway arch at Battersea.
In the autumn of 1910 Sopwith bought a Howard Wright Monoplane (a development of the same designer's 'Avis' series of 1909-10) on which he taught himself to taxi at Brooklands, new on 22 October - for something like 300 yards, stalled by reason of inexperience, and crashed. This Sopwith-owned-and-flown Howard Wright Monoplane had a 40 hp E.N.V. engine (these initials signifying that this British powerplant had its cylinders arranged 'en V') and a four-wheel landing gear, with a skid between each pair of wheels. Above the fuselage were the petrol tank and a kingpost; below it was the radiator. The 'tailskid' was immense and, as the photograph on the previous page proclaims, had only a remote association with the tail.
Early in November, 1910 Sopwith was continuing to put in time on this aircraft (now repaired) with vastly greater success, until the engine burst a cylinder-head; but, even so, he soon had the monoplane airborne once again, and was clearly making progress as a serious-minded aviator.
One later reference to the Howard Wright Monoplane will be made in the context of an A.B.C. engine; but Sopwith's next aeroplane was a biplane - another product of Howard T. Wright - and it was on this sturdy machine, in which he incorporated some of his own modifications, that he really made his name as an airman. As the matter was put in a report of a lecture by Sir Thomas during 1960 (in the lecture theatre of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers - though his audience was dominantly of the RAeS persuasion): 'Crashing the Avis [sic] and buying the biplane was expensive, so he decided to try and get money back by going for the Baron de Forest ?4,000 prize for the longest flight from England to the Continent.'
M.Goodall, A.Tagg British Aircraft before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
P.Lewis British Aircraft 1809-1914 (Putnam)
Howard Wright 1910 Monoplane
A revised version of the 1909 Avis Monoplane was shown at Olympia in 1910. Priced at ?630. it was fitted with an eight-cylinder 40 h.p. E.N.V. "D" engine which had its radiators mounted full chord at the wing-roots and drove a 6 ft. propeller. In the place of the earlier Demoiselle-type tail, one on Bleriot lines was used, with a rectangular rudder and with elevators pivoted at the ends of the tail plane. Span, 27 ft. Length, 29 ft. Wing area, 160 sq. ft. Weight empty, 440 lb. Weight loaded, 605 lb. Landing speed, 35 m.p.h.
Flight, March 12, 1910
THE SECOND OLYMPIA AERO SHOW.
BRITISH-BUILT monoplane having a spread of 27 ft. and an overall length of 29 ft., the lifting surface being 160 sq. ft. It is fitted with a 40-h.p. E.N.V. engine weighing 155 lbs. The machine is mounted on runners which in turn are fitted with wheels and rubber springs. By these means the machine is able to rise from the ground without the aid of a starting apparatus, and at the same time the advantage of skids for alighting is obtained.
Flight, April 2, 1910
FLYER SILHOUETTES FROM OLYMPIA.
THE E.N.V. MONOPLANE.
Leading Particulars of the "E. N. V." Monoplane.
General Dimensions.-Areas-Main planes, 160 sq. ft.; fixed tail, 18 sq. ft.; elevator, 17 sq. ft.; rudder, 6 sq. ft.
Lengths.-Span, 27 ft.; chord, 6 ft. 6 ins.; camber, 4 1/2 ins.; leverage of rudder, 21 ft.; overall length, 29 ft.; skid track, 4 ft.
Angles.-Angle of incidence 6°; dihedral, 1 in 24.
Materials.-Timber.-Ash frame, spruce spars.
Propeller.-Howard Wright; diameter, 6 ft.: pitch, 2 ft. 3 ins.
Weight.-Machine, 250 lbs.; engine, 155 lbs.; driver, oil, petrol and water, 200 lbs.; total flying weight, 605 lbs.; loading (all weight supported on main plane), 3.8 lbs. per sq. ft.
Speed of Flight.-35 m.p.h.
System of Control.-Elevator, rudder, warping of main planes.
MONOPLANE constructed for Warwick Wright by Howard Wright. It is a machine of modified Bleriot design, but having an original system of combined steel and wood frame construction. The chassis is an example of the "A" type, and is made of timber; it is surmounted by a steel frame for the support of the engine. The machine is carried upon wheels and skis. The radiator is placed under the main wings, as on the Santos-Dumont monoplane.