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Pollien (Canadian Aircraft Works) Biplane

Страна: Канада

Год: 1912

Pollay - Biplane - 1914 - Канада<– –>Prosper - Bleriot-type monoplane - 1910 - Канада

K.Molson, H.Taylor Canadian Aircraft since 1909 (Putnam)

Pollien Biplane

   Gustave Pollien was born of French-Swiss parents in 1890 at Assen in northern Holland. He was a mechanic by trade and worked for both the Caudron brothers and H. Farman at Port Aviation near Juisy in France. There he met Ernest Anctil of Montreal, and Pollien followed him there apparently in late 1911. (The role of Ernest Anctil in prewar aviation in the Montreal area is not well recorded but may well have been more significant than the meagre records indicate. He worked with both Reid and Pollien, and Pollien’s aircraft was once referred to as the Anctil-Pollien biplane. He flew the aircraft of both Reid and Pollien)
   By 1912 Pollien had met P. H. Reid and built his own aircraft. Pollien was known as a skilled craftsman and made propellers for both Reid and himself. He built his aircraft with the aid of Ernest Anctil in the Barreyre Garage on Hotel de Ville Street near Dorchester Street in Montreal, and it was then moved to a barn owned by Gervais Cousineau at the Montreal Polo Club. His early flying was done from the polo grounds on Bois Franc Road. The aircraft was reported as being flown on 26 September, 1912, by Anctil and on 6 October by Pollien, but it may well have flown earlier. On 20 October Pollien had a crash near the polo grounds following engine failure.
   Pollien’s aircraft was of original design but followed generally the early machines of Gaston and Rene Caudron which he would have worked on in France. It had a small nacelle, mounted centrally on the lower wing, housing a pilot, passenger and a tractor engine, while booms extended aft to carry the tail surfaces. It had a five-cylinder air-cooled Viale engine of 55 hp which had been provided by Georges Husson of the Franco-American Auto Co, Montreal. Two unusual features were the exceptionally wide track of the undercarriage and the method of bracing the engine.
   Pollien was flying his reconstructed aircraft again at the polo grounds in August 1913. The Viale engine gave trouble and was replaced by a 50 hp Gnome, and in a crash on 5 October, 1913, the aircraft was wrecked but the Gnome undamaged.
   Pollien then moved to Montreal South, on the south shore of the St Lawrence opposite the city, where he continued his aviation activities. By 1914 he had formed the Canadian Aircraft Works and built two more machines.

   One 55hp Viale or 50hp Gnome Omega. Span 30ft (9-14m); length 32ft (9-75m); wing area 250 sqft (23-22 sqm). Empty weight 600lb (272kg).
   Specification given with 55 hp Viale engine after the aircraft’s 1913 reconstruction.

Canadian Aircraft Works Biplanes

   In 1914 Gustave Pollien accomplished three things at his new location in Montreal South. He built a single-seat biplane, formed the Canadian Aircraft Works, and built a two-seat biplane, and it is believed that they were done in that order.
   Certainly by 11 June, 1914, his new single-seat biplane was flying well and probably had been for some time. The aircraft followed the same general pattern as his 1912 machine and still used wing warping for lateral control but was powered with a cowled 50 hp Gnome engine. By all accounts the design was most successful. Pollien was advertised to appear with the celebrated Lincoln Beachey at Maisonneuve Park. Montreal, on 27 June where Beachey looped his machine, the first time a loop had been performed in Canada. Unfortunately the usually reliable Gnome had given Pollien trouble so he did not appear. Pollien continued to fly his machine and made at least one cross-country flight from Montreal South to Chambly and return, a claimed distance of 30 miles (48-3 km), a flight erroneously claimed as a Canadian record.
   It is thought that Pollien formed the Canadian Aircraft Works soon after the outbreak of the First World War in the hope of supplying aircraft and training aviators for the Canadian Government. The Company’s Secretary wrote to the Government to this effect on 7 November, 1914, and later Maj W. B. Anderson inspected their facilities. The company offered to train an aviator for $350, with a guaranteed pilot’s certificate, which is not understood as there was no licensing authority in Canada at that time. This was the first time that a company actively offered flying instruction in Canada. They priced their single-seat biplane at $4,000. It is believed that the principal backer of the Canadian Aircraft Works was W. L. Daoust.
   Later that year, a two-seat aircraft was completed and flown successfully. It followed the same general design practices but was larger and seated two in tandem, with the pilot at the rear. Two rudders were fitted, and the more powerful 60 hp Gnome was installed without a cowl. The aircraft was exhibited at the Second Annual Motor Show in Montreal between 23 and 30 January, 1915.
   It is believed that the Canadian Aircraft Works attempted to get a training programme under way in the spring of 1915 and that E. L. Janney joined, or attempted to join, the company after crashing W. A. Dean’s Curtiss E flying-boat at Toronto. The company is not known to have trained any pilots and is believed to have gone out of business in 1915. The fate of its two machines is unknown and Pollien is not known to have had any further aviation activities.

Single-seat biplane
   One 50hp Gnome Omega. Span, upper, 30ft (9-14m). Empty weight 727lb (330kg). Ceiling 1,500ft (457m).*

Two-seat biplane
   One 60 hp Gnome Sigma. Maximum speed 60 mph (96-5 km/h). Ceiling 4,000ft (1,219 m).*

*Altitudes reported reached but it is not known what they represent.

K.Molson, H.Taylor - Canadian Aircraft since 1909 /Putnam/
Pollien’s 1912 Biplane in front of the hangar at the polo grounds.
K.Molson, H.Taylor - Canadian Aircraft since 1909 /Putnam/
Canadian Aircraft Works single-seat biplane. G. Pollien is on the left.
K.Molson, H.Taylor - Canadian Aircraft since 1909 /Putnam/
Canadian Aircraft Works single-seat biplane. G. Pollien is on the right.
K.Molson, H.Taylor - Canadian Aircraft since 1909 /Putnam/
The Canadian Aircraft Works two-seat biplane.