M.Goodall, A.Tagg British Aircraft before the Great War (Schiffer)
Deleted by request of (c)Schiffer Publishing
GRAHAME-WHITE AVIATION Co. (Claude Grahame-White, Hendon Aerodrome)
Grahame-White operated a successful motor business and, after a brief period of ballooning, turned to heavier than air machines in 1909, after the developments in France and Bleriot's Channel crossing. He learnt to fly at the Bleriot School at the end of the year, receiving Brevet No.30 of the Aero Club de France in January 1910. Thereafter he set up his own flying school at Pau, later transferring this temporarily to Brooklands. In May 1910 The Aero reported that he rented ground at Park Royal, near the Plumes Hotel, but this report was premature. The report also referred to 'half a dozen monoplanes of Bleriot type', built at his workshop at Walham Green, under the supervision of R.W.A. Brewer.
The school was moved to Hendon in 1911, where Grahame-White also ran many flying displays, which made Hendon famous. He also established his manufacturing company there, early in 1911, and this operated into the early postwar period, but was forced into receivership in 1922. From 1913 to 1915, J.D. North, later of Boulton and Paul, was in charge of design.
Farman and Bleriot machines from the French factories had been used by Grahame-White since 1909, but when his school commenced operations the number of machines was increased. The aircraft in use in 1911-1912 were often reported to be 'British-built Farmans' but the number actually made is uncertain. To indicate the scale of operations, reports at times referred to biplane No. 10 and monoplane No.6. A photograph in Flight 11 February 1911 (p. 114) showed five Bleriots, one Farman and one G.W. Baby already available. The manufacture of aircraft developed from Farman types, to those of original design, and the production capacity was enhanced by a large addition of plant and machinery in October 1911.
GRAHAME-WHITE Sommer type biplane
A single propeller, pusher type biplane with seats for two was exhibited at Gamages store from 6 to 11 June 1910, with which Grahame-White was hoping to fly to Paris from London. It was described as 'British-built', and was constructed before the works at Hendon were established. It was made by the Windham Detachable Motor Body Co. Nothing more was heard of this machine at the time.
In some respects like a Sommer biplane, the machine had front booms and long curved skids, to which the front elevator was hinged. Rear booms carried a fixed tailplane but no rudder. The front spars of the wings were at the leading edge. Large single acting ailerons hung from the rear spars of the top wings, with additional fixed trailing edge surfaces inboard of these.
A later reference states that a Sommer biplane was dismantled at Brooklands by Compton Paterson, at that time a GW pilot, and in November it was being reassembled with a Gnome engine for the use of the pupils. Although not confirmed, this is presumed to refer to this machine.
Power: 40hp Humber four-cylinder inline water-cooled.
Gap 5ft 9in
Length of tail, rear of wings 23ft
Area 450 sq ft
Weight allup 800lb
WINDHAM biplane No.2
In 1910 Windham built a biplane for Grahame-White, who intended to use it for a flight from London to Paris, which he never carried out. This machine was exhibited at Gamages in the summer of 1910, and is already described as the Grahame-White Biplane Type 1 (q. v.). It was made before Grahame-White had established his own manufacturing facilities.
P.Lewis British Aircraft 1809-1914 (Putnam)
The Grahame-White Biplane of 1910 was built for a projected flight from London to Paris. It was a pusher with a single propeller, and was designed on the lines of the Wright Brothers' biplanes. The elevator was mounted in front of the wings.
Flight, June 11, 1910
Mr. C. Grahame-White's New Biplane.
DURING the past week the British-built biplane with which Mr. Claude Grahame-White hopes to make an early attempt to fly from London to Paris has been on view at Messrs. Gamage's. In general appearance the machine resembles that designed by M. Sommer, but it differs in several minor details. Approximately the two main planes have a span of 33 ft., and they are placed about 5 ft. 9 ins. apart. The lifting surface is about 450 sq. ft., and the machine weighs approximately 800 lbs. The ribs are made of poplar and ash, a nd are so constructed that they can be easily replaced by slotting on to the main supports of the planes. These, together with the stanchions, are made of ash.