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Bellanca Airbus/Aircruiser

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Old March 7th 19, 02:18 PM posted to alt.binaries.pictures.aviation
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Default Bellanca Airbus/Aircruiser


The Bellanca Aircruiser and Airbus were high-wing, single-engine aircraft built
by Bellanca Aircraft Corporation of New Castle, Delaware. The aircraft was built
as a "workhorse" intended for use as a passenger or cargo aircraft. It was
available with wheels, floats or skis. The aircraft was powered by either a
Wright Cyclone or Pratt and Whitney Hornet engine. The Airbus and Aircruiser
served as both commercial and military transports.

The first Bellanca Airbus was built in 1930 as the P-100. An efficient design,
it was capable of carrying 12 to 14 passengers depending on the cabin interior
configuration, with later versions carrying up to 15. In 1931, test pilot George
Haldeman flew the P-100 a distance of 4,400 miles in a time aloft of 35 hours.
Although efficient, with a cost per mile figure of eight cents per mile
calculated for that flight, the first Airbus did not sell due to its
water-cooled engine.

Passenger/cargo aircraft

Bellanca Aircraft Corporation

Giuseppe Mario Bellanca

First flight

Primary user
Private operators

Number built

The next model, the P-200 Airbus, was powered by a larger, more reliable
air-cooled engine. One version (P-200-A) came with floats and operated as a
ferry service in New York City, flying between Wall Street and the East River.
Other versions included a P-200 Deluxe model, with custom interiors and seating
for nine. The P-300 was designed to carry 15 passengers. The final model, the
"Aircruiser," was the most efficient aircraft of its day, and would rank high
amongst all aircraft designs. With a Wright Cyclone air-cooled supercharged
radial engine rated at 715 hp, the Aircruiser could carry a useful load greater
than its empty weight. In the mid-1930s, the Aircruiser could carry 4,000 lb
payloads at a speed of between 145 and 155 mph, a performance that multi-engine
Fokkers and Ford Trimotors could not come close to matching.

In 1934, United States federal regulations prohibited single-engine transports
on United States airlines, virtually eliminating future markets for the
Aircruiser. Where the workhorse capabilities of the Aircruiser stood out was in
Canada. Several of "The Flying Ws", as it was commonly dubbed in Canada, were
used in northern mining operations, ferrying ore, supplies and the occasional
passenger, into the 1970s.

Specifications (66-70 Aircruiser)

General characteristics
Crew: one, pilot
Capacity: 16 passengers
Length: 43 ft 4 in (13.21 m)
Wingspan: 65 ft 0 in (19.82 m)
Height: 11 ft 6 in (3.51 m)
Wing area: 520 ft (48.3 m)
Empty weight: 6,072 lb (2,754 kg)
Loaded weight: 10,000 lb (4,536 kg)
Powerplant: 1 Wright R-1820 Cyclone 9 9-cylinder supercharged air-cooled
radial engine, 710 hp (530 kW)

Maximum speed: 144 knots (165 mph, 266 km/h)
Range: 608 nm (700 miles, 1,130 km)
Service ceiling: 22,000 ft (6,700 m)



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