L.Opdyke French Aeroplanes Before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
Societe de Construction d'Appareils Aeriens
This firm, referred to also as SACAA as well as the Avionnerie de Levallois (an industrial suburb northwest of Paris), was founded in 1909 by George de Manthe, Clement Ader's son-in-law, with Espinosa, Ader's former mechanic. Until 1911-1912 they built a great number of flying machines designed by their inventors. In 1910, for instance, they were building 3 biplanes, one monoplane, one helicopter, and one helicoplane. Only one of their output, however, was advertised as a genuine SCAA: the Fregate, built for Robert de Lesseps. It is not clear now what parts Espinosa and de Lesseps played in the design, though Espinosa sometimes claimed it all as his own.
Alex Dumas in L'Aero reported at the end of 1909 that 3 Fregates were being built for de Lesseps; the first one appeared throughout 1910 with many modifications. The most striking feature of the series was their M-shaped gull wings, like those of the frigate-bird, which showed up especially well after crashes and nose-overs. The spars were hollow and wrapped with fabric tape, a patented method copied from Ader's Avions. The long trapezoidal rear elevator was hinged at the leading edge on the top of the fuselage well forward of the stern. The first version had no rudder, depending on wing-warping for directional control, and the outer wing sections were crescent-shaped. A rudder was added to the second version, and the wingtips were shorter and more sharply swept back. The undercarriage consisted of castering main-wheels and a tail wheel.
(Span: 10 m; length: 6.5 m; wing area: 20 sqm; empty weight: 230 kg; speed: c 65 kmh; 25 hp Anzani)
At the 1910 Salon another - perhaps the third - Fregate was exhibited, this one with an uncovered fuselage and a 25 hp Anzani, though it never flew in this form. The wingtips were rounder, and the elevator was hinged at the stern. It was shown under the name SCAA, and was flown by Guillaume, the SCAA pilot.
Flight, March 19, 1910
Doings at Issy.
VERY little has been doing at Issy during the past week or so. MM. Busson and Noel have been trying their Bleriots, and M. Jacques de Lesseps has been making further experiments with the "Fregate," illustrated in our issue of the 26th ult. Mdlle. Dutrieu is continuing her lessons on the "Demoiselle," while the brothers Regy have been experimenting with a monoplane built to their design by Messrs. Peugeot.