De Havilland D.H.83 Fox Moth
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De Havilland D.H.83 Fox Moth

De Havilland designer A. E. Hagg evolved the de Havilland D.H.83 Fox Moth in 1932 to meet a perceived need for a light transport aircraft with good performance, economical operations and low initial cost. To standard Tiger Moth components (including wings, tail unit, landing gear and engine mounting) he added a new plywood-covered wooden fuselage, locating the pilot in an open cockpit behind an enclosed cabin which accommodated up to four passengers. The prototype, powered by an 89kW de Havilland Gipsy III engine, was flown at Stag Lane in March 1932. It was later shipped to Canada for trials on floats and skis, undertaken in service with Canadian Airways Ltd. Eight of the 98 British-built Fox Moths were exported to Canada between 1932 and 1935, and two more examples were built by de Havilland Aircraft of Australia. Many of these were powered by the Gipsy Major engine and some had sliding hoods over the cockpit. A single Japanese-built copy, powered by a 112kW radial engine and known as the Chidorigo, was flown by the Japanese Aerial Transport Company. After the war, in 1946, de Havilland Canada built 52 examples of the D.H.83C, which had a number of small improvements including trim tab on the elevators, an enlarged clear-view hood over the cockpit and the installation of a 108kW Gipsy Major 1C engine. Another example of the D.H.83C (there were no D.H.83A or D.H.83B variants) was completed by Leavens Bros Ltd in 1948.

De Havilland D.H.83 Fox MothA three-view drawing (700 x 580)

 ENGINE1 x de Havilland Gipsy Major inline piston engine, 97kW
    Take-off weight939 kg2070 lb
    Empty weight499 kg1100 lb
    Wingspan9.41 m31 ft 10 in
    Length7.85 m26 ft 9 in
    Height2.68 m9 ft 10 in
    Wing area24.25 m2261.02 sq ft
    Max. speed182 km/h113 mph
    Cruise speed154 km/h96 mph
    Ceiling3870 m12700 ft
    Range579 km360 miles

De Havilland D.H.83 Fox Moth

Comments1-20 21-40
Derrick Salmon, 29.08.2017

My first flight was from Southport, on G-ACEJ, as a present from my father on my 10th birthday in 1950. I seem to recall it was ten shillings, not two and sixpence.

Paul Beever, 13.01.2016

Wentup in giroux s fox moth in early 60s with my father who kept his eyes shut for the entire flight! I was about 12 years old, was totally captivated by the experience and even went on a gliding holiday a few years later. I met a friend of Normans who went on pub crawl flights in the fox moth to cheshire!

Gordon McGlennon, 01.12.2014

I had a 15 minute flight in a fox moth in 1938, we had watched the aircraft sky writing the name Persil. later my father took my brother and I for the flight. I believe it was the first aeroplane, I had ever seen. I was 6 years old. the airfield was next to the Seabank hotel in porthcawl, South Wales

Dave Williamson, 19.09.2014

Bob Bromley:
After the 1956 forced landing incident, G-ACCB was, apparently, restored in 1988 and may even have flown again?

Argeo, 01.07.2012

In answer to Tom's question, the small propeller used airflow to provide electrical power via a dynamo.

Tom, 19.05.2012

What is the small propeller on the left wing of the Fox Moth?

Capt. Johnny Sadiq (retd), 28.04.2012

I had 20 hours on the type in 1957 at the Karachi Flying Club. She tended to ground loop on landing until you got used to her. She had one speed for climb, cruise, and descent--75 mph. I never flew the Fox Moth with the bubble hood on--another example of the type in Pakistan had crashed and the hood locked shut, trapping the pilot.The cockpit was much more comfortable that the Tiger Moth (which I also flew) and also quieter.

Karl H Bridge, 12.03.2012

G-AOJH I flew in this aircraft from Southport beach as a child in the early 1970's (1971 I think). The pilot was a certain Captain 'Jack'/John.

Mike Jackson, 19.02.2012

My first flight was in a Fox Moth from Wallasey Beach in Merseyside UK, as far as I can pin point it, in the late fifties. I was about ten years old and got the money, about ten bob from my mother on her understanding, I clearly said aeroplane, that it was to go to the nearby fair ground. Anything to get rid of me. Apparently she went white when ten minutes after handing over the cash a small aircraft taxied past and took off. To add to the mayhem, the pilot buzzed the chip and putt (small golf course) during the flight, where my dad was having a round. He was mad as hell when he got back, and just about blew a valve when he learnt that I was on board. Brilliant for a ten year old. I remember the flights were run by The Liverpool Students Union as a rag day fund raiser. They only managed to get off one or two before the police arrived and moved them on. I wonder does anyone else have memories of this fabulous day? Flying in that plane again is on my bucket list. Can anyone help?

Luis Moreno, 10.09.2011

A very interesting aircraft.

Howard Meyers, 23.06.2011

I was recently made aware of this web site, but could not find anything about a Fox Moth that was based in the United States at Floyd Bennet Field New York. This is an annoying lapse in aviation history, as I was an eager youth who traveled there most weekends after school, the year being sometime in the nineteen thity's. I wish I couild recall the name of the pilot owner, whom I believe was an ex US Air Corps pilot. At the time he was applying for a contract having to do with cocmmunicating some sort of atmospheric info. To comply he had to have something weighing approximately in the 100 to 115 pound class which brings me into the picture. Naturelly I jumped at the offer, and at that time had my first ride in a foreign aircraft. I noted in the statistics that the service ceiling of the 1934 Fox Moth was listed as 12500' I was told that we made it to 18000 feet and never did learn the results of the test. In conclusion my career started 1941 aoloed a J-3, enrolled n the Air Corps codtinued as an pilot till my rerlease then continued on as an airlne pilot. I no longer fly due to the ravages of time.

Michael Cane, 07.05.2011

A Fox Moth resides in the Prince of Wales Heritage Center in Yellowknife North West Territories Canada

Andrew Leech, 29.03.2011

My first flight ever was in this aircraft at Southport sands about 1954 or 1955. It cost me 2/6d (that is 2 shillings and sixpence, today 12p) that was my whole pocketmoney. I was surprised at the earlier article saying 'ten bob for 10 minutes' and wondered why I'd had a discount! Perhaps because I was the only one in the crowd who asked to fly - and I was the only passenger on that short flight. I didn't receive any photo of the plane and I don't remember whether the pilot spoke with a Polish accent, though he was a smiling reassuring type of person. It was a marvellous experience and the memory led to my starting PPL training in 1969. I am 63 years old and still fly single engined aircraft for fun.

Eric Eccles, 18.03.2011

Would anybody know where crashed a Fox Moth in North-Western Québec, (Abitibi region ).?It was operated by Air Fecteau. Arthur Fecteau died in 1987, and one of the last mechanics passed away one year ago.
I dont have any other resource to find the wreckage of the aircraft

Bob Bromley, 14.09.2010

My first flight was in one of these aircraft from Southport sands in the late 1940's . Each passenger was presented with a post card type photo of the aircraft signed by the pilot who was Polish and had in flown with the RAF during the war. Sadly the aircraft was lost in the mid 1950's, when during a test flight, luckily with no passengers ! the aircraft was forced to land on a sandbank , and having a fixed undercarriage tipped over onto its back - the pilot escaped but the aircraft was covered by the incoming tide and lost. A history of the aircraft is displayed at the end of the current pier.

Martin W. Roberts, 30.08.2010

My first flight was from Southport sands in a Fox Moth sometime in the late 40's when I was six to ten years old (no way I can confirm the actual year). Don't know if this was a continuation of the operation described by Maurice Harvey? I remember seeing the pilot's round and red smiling face as he kept is eye on us through the little porthole between our cabin and the open cockpit. That did it for me; RAF Boy Entrant, six years in the service, member of The Lancashire Aero Club and a pilots license for 40 years - glad I went to Southport and that my mother could afford the "ten bob for ten minutes" flight

Maurice Harvey, 29.08.2010

In 1940 I watched Giroux Aviation DH83 G-ACEJ pleasure flying off Southport beach. It carried up to 4 passengers on these brief flips and it seemed to be a very economical and airworthy aircraft. Sadly the war terminated these flights and the Giroux Hanger became an assembly place for firstly Avro Ansons and then for DH Mosquitos. All these planes made their first flights from Southport beach. After the war there was a DUKW 'bus' service on the firm sands. I left Sunny Southport behind in 1947 when I joined the RAF on National Service.

Stan Smith, 11.06.2010

I have recently completed the extesive rebuild of DH83C S/No FM 48 registered ZK-APT. I operate it on a full Air Transport CofA. Drop me an E mail for further info. I also have a complete rebuild project for sale if anyone is interested.

Jack B Lalonde, 13.06.2008

DH83C, Sn55-1 is now registered as


Jack Lalonde, 06.04.2008

55-1 is ready for painting, engine run-up in test cell soon.
DH83 (Prince of Wales) sold to Quebec Group, presently stored at Downsview National Museum. Dave Hadfield pilot.

1-20 21-40

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