The "Model T" of Airplanes

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Yellowhammer

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Ford Flivver, aka "The Model T of the Air". Backed by Henry Ford, and flown by Charles Lindbergh. The project was abandoned when a flight of the prototype ended in a fatal crash after the pilot plugged the fuel cap vent holes with toothpicks, causing the engine to stop.
 

cluttonfred

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For those that don't know, Henri Mignet's Pou-du-Ciel was intended to be the Model T of the air...an affordable, easy to build, easy to fly machine to make flying accessible to all. The French nickname for the Model T was "pou de la route" or "louse of the road" not because they didn't like it (bugs often have a positive, cute connotation in French) but because they were everywhere and all black. So the Pou-du-Ciel was intended to be the "louse of the sky" in the same way, but that didn't translate very well so it became "Flying Flea" in English.

 

Tiger Tim

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The Ford Flivver looks like it would be an absolute hoot to fly. I bet a new-ish one for one of the three cylinder Verners would have sold a bunch of plans had the engines not been discontinued.

Side note - those wings hanging on the wall behind are really something. Can anyone confirm if they’re for Gordon Israel’s Redhead racer?
 

Dana

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And in the end, Mr. Taylor's Cub became the Model T of the air, after Mr. Piper forced him out of the company. "Any color you want, as long as it's yellow."
 

BJC

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Jerry Lytle

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This is much like the oft seen cartoon saying can you count the differences in these two pictures.

I assume the original designer made the suggestion to change several features over the original. How many can you count?cropped fliver.pngnew fliver.png
 

Turd Ferguson

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The Fliver at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn is always displayed suspended from the ceiling where it is difficult to get a close look at.
Even had it been successful, I don't think it would have seen large scale production. Henry Ford was more interested in building commercial transport airplanes.

1610578086202.png
 

Turd Ferguson

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This is much like the oft seen cartoon saying can you count the differences in these two pictures.
Otto Koppen (Helio Courier fame) designed the first Flivver. Then they wanted to improve it so they gave it longer wings, a bigger engine and gas tank. The bigger engine was built in-house by Ford.
The one at the Henry Ford Museum is one of the originals. I'd really like to get a close look at it. And yes, I asked, they laughed.
 

Riggerrob

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Since N2318 has a strut-braced structure fundamentally similar to Volksplane 1 .... how difficult would it be to build a Ford Flivver replica based upon a Volksplane 1?

Changes to the cowling and upper cockpit fairing could easily be sculpted with foam and fiberglass.

The next challenge is designing a vertical stab-rudder that balances the same as VP, but with a curved trailing edge. Extending the replica's rudder down to the tail wheel (ala. original Ford Flivver) is probably too much of a challenge for a junior homebuilder/designer.
 

BJC

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I don't recall the steel tube size used in the Ford, but they were much larger than what one would find in a Laser / Extra or similar more modern aircraft,

There were lots of opportunities (not taken - it was a faithful replica, except for the engine) to lower the empty weight.


BJC
 

Pops

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One of my grandson's received a share in a 1947 Luscombe for his 16th birthday. Every time I flew the Luscombe, I kept thinking " Ford Model A, Ford Model A".
 

cluttonfred

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Here you go, but on a VP-2! ;-)

1610652709789.png vp-2 flivver.jpg VP-2 with Verner 5W.jpg

Since N2318 has a strut-braced structure fundamentally similar to Volksplane 1 .... how difficult would it be to build a Ford Flivver replica based upon a Volksplane 1? Changes to the cowling and upper cockpit fairing could easily be sculpted with foam and fiberglass.
 

Riggerrob

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Dear cluttonfred,
If you curve the forward fuselage fairing between the spinner and the cockpit you will end up with a stand-off-scale replica of Ford's Flivver.
 

Doran Jaffas

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The FORD FLIVER!
Greetings Friends,

I found this today on the Homemade Tools Forum I am a member of. I thought I would post it on here to share with everyone that may have not seen it before.

A very interesting aircraft indeed. Especially for the time period it was flown.

Sincerely,


Yellowhammer

YellowhammerView attachment 106282View attachment 106283
The
Greetings Friends,

I found this today on the Homemade Tools Forum I am a member of. I thought I would post it on here to share with everyone that may have not seen it before.

A very interesting aircraft indeed. Especially for the time period it was flown.

Sincerely,


Yellowhammer

YellowhammerView attachment 106282View attachment 106283
The Ford FLIVER! I haven't seen a picture of one in years! Any plans available?
 
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