De Havilland D.H.77
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De Havilland D.H.77

Conceived to meet the requirements of Specification F.20/27 which called for a short-range, fast-climbing, lightly-loaded single-seat interceptor fighter, the D.H.77 was designed by W G Carter in close collaboration with Maj F B Halford. The latter evolved specifically for the fighter a novel supercharged air-cooled engine of low frontal area which was built by D Napier, as the Napier H type and later known as the Rapier I, offering 301hp. Of mixed construction, the wing having two steel spars and wooden ribs with fabric skinning, and the fuselage, also fabric-covered, being a box girder of steel tube with wooden formers, the D.H.77 carried an armament of two 7.7mm Vickers guns and flew early in December 1929. The sole prototype was purchased by the Air Ministry and after the completion of official trials was used primarily for Rapier engine development. It was fitted, in December 1932, with a 295hp Rapier II, the Hawker Hornet biplane (renamed Fury) having meanwhile been selected for production as the RAF's first standard interceptor.

De Havilland D.H.77A three-view drawing (1280 x 976)

    Take-off weight1034 kg2280 lb
    Empty weight751 kg1656 lb
    Wingspan9.80 m32 ft 2 in
    Length7.44 m24 ft 5 in
    Height2.44 m8 ft 0 in
    Wing area15.14 m2162.97 sq ft
    Max. speed327 km/h203 mph

J Runfeldt, 17.09.2014

No Rick, many of the early pioneer aircraft pre-WW1 used all-flying control surfaces. Examples include but are not restricted to, Bleriot XI of first Channel crossing fame, Morane-Saulnier type G, and of course the Wright Flyer.

Rick Harland, 25.10.2010

Was this the first aircraft to use an all-flying tailpane?

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