AVIATION IN BRITAIN BEFORE THE FIRST WORLD WAR

Catalogue number
  • RAE-O 850
Department
Photographs
Part of
Production date
1910-08
Subject period
Alternative names
  • object name: Official photograph
  • object category: Black and white
Creator
Category
photographs

© IWM (RAE-O 850)

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Object description

Cody aircraft mark II on the ground at the Lanark Aviation Meeting. Cody did only limited flying at this meeting due to problems with the engine (see below). Cody built this aircraft in 1910; the previous aircraft had been in several crashes and was suffering generally from constant usage. The design of this aircraft followed similar lines to the previous one though the wingspan was shorter by around six feet and the wing area around a third smaller. The single propeller was originally intended to be powered by two 60 hp Green engines (mark IIA) though problems with synchronicity meant that this was never carried out. This did mean that the aircraft was underpowered though alterations to the engine and the removal of excess weight partly solved this problem (marks IIB to IID). When this engine was replaced with a 120 hp Austro-Daimler, the aircraft performed well, and in January 1912 carried Cody and four passengers. It was eventually crashed by Lieut. J N Fletcher on the 5th April whilst Cody was teaching him to fly. It was also in this aircraft that Cody won his first Michelin Trophy. Note the biplane tail this is the only example of the mark II with this fitting and it is possible that it was only fitted for the Lanark meeting. This reflects the constant tinkering that Cody carried out on his aircraft to obtain better performance and handling.

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