Caudron C.280

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C.280 Phalène
Role Utility aircraft
Manufacturer Caudron
Designer Paul Deville
First flight March 1932
Number built 240 (plus 51 military examples)

The Caudron C.280 Phalène ("Moth") was a civil utility aircraft built in France during the 1930s. It was a high-wing braced monoplane of conventional configuration with fixed tailskid undercarriage. The pilot and two-three passengers were accommodated within an enclosed cabin. The structure was wooden throughout, with the forward fuselage skinned with plywood, and the rest of the aircraft fabric-covered.

The type proved popular on the civil market, with a number of long-distance flights staged to promote it. The French military also purchased a number of examples under the C.400 and C.410 designations.


  • C.280 - Prototypes equipped with the de Havilland Gipsy II piston engine. (Five built)
    • C.280/2 - Four-seat light touring monoplane, powered by a 108 kW (145 hp) Renault 4Pdi piston engine. 21 built.,
    • C.280/6 - This version had rounded wingtips. Only one was built.
    • C.280/9 - The fuselage was lengthened by 20 cm (8 in). (Three built)
  • C.282 Super Phalene - Powered by a de Havilland Gipsy Major piston engine. (11 built).
    • C.280/4 - fitted with dual controls, automatic slots and flaps. (Nine built)
    • C.282/8 - Definitive production version, equipped with a 108 kW (145 hp) Renault 4Pdi piston engine. Similar to the C.282/2. (89 built, plus three conversions)
    • C.282/10 - Equipped with the Merville series 601 propeller.
  • C.286 - Powered by a de Havilland Gipsy III piston engine. (11 built)
    • C.286/2 Fitted rounded wingtips. (Ten built)
    • C.286/2.S4 and C.286/3.S4' - Special luxury versions, powered by the de Havilland Gipsy Major I piston engine. (Ten built)
    • C.282/4 Super-Phalene - (five built)
    • C.286/5 Super-Phalène - This version was equipped with a de Havilland Gipsy III piston engine. (One built)
    • C.286/6 Super-Phalène - This version was equipped with a de Havilland Gipsy Major piston engine, it was also fitted with a Merville 501 propeller. (Five built)
    • C.286/7 Super-Phalene - equipped with Ratier series 1175 variable-pitch propeller. (Eight built)
    • C.286/8 Super-Phalène - The fuselage was lengthened slightly, it was powered by a de Havilland Gipsy Major piston engine. (Four built)
    • C.286/9 Super-Phalene - The fuselage was slightly shorter. (One built)
  • C.289/2 -Powered by a 112 kW (150 hp) Hispano-Suzia 5Q radial piston engine. (Five built)
  • C.400 - Military version. 40 were built for the French Air Force.
    • C.401 - Several C.400s were modified for civilian use during the postwar years.
  • C.410 - Military version, powered by a 104-kW (140-hp) Renault 4Pdi piston engine. (11 built)


 Belgian Congo

Specifications (C.282/6)[edit]

General characteristics

  • Crew: one pilot
  • Capacity: two-three passengers
  • Length: 8.25 m (27 ft 1 in)
  • Wingspan: 11.62 m (38 ft 1 in)
  • Height: 2.05 m (6 ft 9 in)
  • Wing area: 25.4 m2 (273 ft2)
  • Empty weight: 1,100 kg (2,425 lb)
  • Gross weight: 550 kg (1,213 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Renault 4Pdi, 108 kW (150 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 185 km/h (115 mph)
  • Range: 850 km (528 miles)
  • Service ceiling: 4,500 m (14,750 ft)
Related lists


  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. p. 240.