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)
The single-seat, tractor Day Monoplane was designed and built at Gosport, Hants., in 1910 by F. Day. Span, 35 ft. Length, 22 ft. Wing area, 220 sq. ft.
Flight, May 7, 1910
A BRITISH-BUILT MONOPLANE.
I am sending you some particulars of my monoplane.
I have been studying aviation since August, 1908, and have been through the various stages, with models, making experiments with wing-flapping machines; also building monoplanes with bamboo framing, but do not consider that bamboo makes a nice-looking job, as it is difficult to make clips to look very neat.
My latest machine has a spread of 35 ft. and chord 6 ft. I in., length 22 ft. over all. Tail elevators of a special shape; 30 sq. ft. area; rudder 6 sq. ft.
Lateral stability is secured by ailerons 18 sq. ft. each, and controlled by hand lever, right hand, or can be worked by moving one's knees. A left hand lever works elevator, and foot levers work the rudder.
The shock absorption is taken by pneumatic sprung wheels, tested to 10 cwt. pressure, and then the skids take the weight.
The framework is of special grained pitch-pine, very light and very strong, every spar you can follow the grain from one end to the other. Our firm being in the timber trade and also wireworkers, building aeroplanes comes quite naturally. No wire tighteners are used on the machine at all, and every wire is drum tight. A special way of tightening them has been devised, and, naturally, a considerable saving in expense. The covering material of the planes is Spencer's aeroplane fabric, which I may say works very well, as we were able to fix it on without a crease, and very tight. First the fabric was all sewn together, and then drawn over the planes and fastened off at the trailing edge. Split canes were used for tacking fabric to ribs, and makes a very neat job. Also in case of damage to planes it will be easy to remove for repairs. The War Office have granted to us the use of a large flat field, over a mile square, and I have built a hangar there to house the machine.
The total weight of monoplane as now, without motor, is 320 lbs.
Also I have got some very good results from a 6 ft. laminated steel tractor screw which I have made. It was tried on shafting at 500 r.p.m. at 14-h.p., and gave a thrust of 135 lbs., and weighs 16 lbs. I seem to fancy a steel propeller instead of a wooden one, as it ought to have a good fly-wheel effect, and make the engine run steady.
The machine is made shorter than usual, because every bird has a greater spread than length, and when going backward and forwards to Gosport to the hangar I have been very carefully watching seagulls.
You can judge of the amount of work in the planes, for there are 620 pieces in the two.
The monoplane has a good lifting surface, as when it was out in the open, having its photo taken, in a slight wind head on, it took three of us to hold it down steady, and once when we let it go it rose by itself about one foot off the ground. Every spar in the machine can be replaced in case of breakage, special means being taken in building to enable it.
If any of your readers would care to take a financial interest to help purchase the engine, I shall be pleased to hear from them.
Portsmouth. F. DAY.