Curtiss HA

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HA / Dunkirk Fighter
Curtiss HA-2 floatplane c1920.jpg
Curtiss HA-2 (BuNo A4111)
Role fighter/mail plane
National origin United States
Manufacturer Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company
Designer B.L. Smith
First flight 21 March 1918[1]
Number built 6 (3 prototypes, 3 landplane mail planes)

The Curtiss HA (sometimes Dunkirk Fighter) was an American biplane seaplane designed by Captain B.L. Smith of the United States Marine Corps, and built by Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company.[1]

Development and design[edit]

The HA was a two-seat biplane with a central float and balancing floats on the wingtips. The fuselage was wood with a fabric covering. The plane was powered by a Liberty 12 engine in the nose. The prototype was ordered in December 1917, and its first flight was on 21 March 1918. During testing the aircraft proved very unstable, with an overly heavy tailplane. The aircraft was destroyed in a crash.[1]

Two more prototypes were ordered, designated HA-1 and HA-2. the HA-1 was constructed of salvaged parts from the original, but its tailplane and radiator were redesigned, and its wings were moved further aft. The HA-1 caught fire during a flight. The HA-2 had a wider wingspan, and performed better, but as the war was almost over, no production order was received.[1]

Operational history[edit]

Three landplane versions were used as Mail planes.[1]

Specifications (HA-2)[edit]

Data from Angelucci, 1987. pp 116-117.[1]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Length: 30 ft 9 in (9.37 m)
  • Wingspan: 42 ft 0 in (12.80 m)
  • Height: 11 ft 5 in (3.47 m)
  • Wing area: 490 ft2 (45.52 m2)
  • Empty weight: 2,946 lb (1,336 kg)
  • Gross weight: 3,907 lb (1,772 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Liberty 12, 360 hp ( kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 118 mph (190 km/h)
  • Rate of climb: 790 ft/min (4 m/s)

Armament

  • 4 × .30 in (7.62 mm) machine guns

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ a b c d e f Angelucci, 1987. pp 116-117.
Bibliography
  • Angelucci, Enzo (1987). The American Fighter from 1917 to the present. New York: Orion Books.