Caproni PS.1

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Caproni PS.1 I-MELO.jpg
The second PS.1
Role Sportsplane
Manufacturer Caproni
First flight 1934
Primary user Italy
Produced 1934
Number built 2

The Caproni PS.1, also known as the Pallavicino PS-1 and Caproni Ca.303, was an Italian four-seater sportsplane, designed and built specifically to compete in Challenge 1934, the European touring plane championships.[1]

Design and development[edit]

The PS.1 was designed by Cesare Pallavicino, the former designer of Breda, after he had moved in 1933 to Caproni. Only two prototypes of the PS.1 were built, given registrations I-FRAN and I-MELO.


The Caproni PS.1 was a four-seat cabin aircraft of metal construction, with cantilever monoplane low wings. The steel-framed fuselage was covered with fabric as were the single-sparred trapezoidal planform foldable wings of steel construction which had rounded tips. The cabin had two side-by-side seats in front with dual controls, and two seats in the rear, under a common multi-part canopy. A retractable conventional landing gear with a rear skid was fitted with the mainwheels protruding from the wing's lower surface when retracted. The radial engine was fitted to the fuselage nose, enclosed by a cowling, driving a two-bladed propeller.[1] Fuel was housed in a 160-litre fuel tank.

Operational history[edit]

The second PS.1 after reconstruction as the Caproni Ca.166

Both aircraft took part in the Challenge 1934 contest, flown by Armando François and Ugo Vincenzi. In a technical evaluation, the PS-1 took second place behind the Messerschmitt Bf 108 (the PS-1 and Bf 108 were the only Challenge aircraft with retractable landing gear). The aircraft were completed only shortly before the contest, so their pilots had little time for training. During a short landing trial, Vincenzi damaged his engine and propeller, and he had to withdraw. Armando François completed the contest in 18th place (for 34 starting and 19 finishing crews).[2]

The second PS.1, I-MELO, was rebuilt in the late 1930s and redesignated Caproni Ca.166, given the registration I-ALGU.

Specifications (PS.1)[edit]

Data from [1]

General characteristics

  • Crew: one or two
  • Capacity: two to three passengers
  • Length: 7.19 m (23 ft 7 in)
  • Wingspan: 10.41083 m (34 ft 1.875 in)
  • Height: 2.1 m (7 ft)
  • Wing area: 17.54 m2 (188.8 sq ft)
  • Empty weight: 659 kg (1,452 lb)
  • Gross weight: 1,078 kg (2,376 lb)
  • Fuel capacity: 160 l (35.20 imp gal; 42.27 US gal)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Fiat A.70 air-cooled 7-cylinder radial engine, 147 kW (197 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 261 km/h; 141 kn (162 mph)
  • Cruise speed: 230 km/h; 124 kn (143 mph)
  • Stall speed: 60 km/h; 32 kn (37 mph)
  • Range: 805 km; 434 nmi (500 mi)
  • Service ceiling: 6,500 m (21,320 ft)
  • Time to altitude: 26 minutes to 13,120 ft (4,000 m)
  • Wing loading: 60 kg/m2 (12 lb/sq ft)
  • Power/mass: 0.14 kW/kg (0.087 hp/lb)

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era


  1. ^ a b c Thompson, Jonathan (1963). Italian Civil & Military Aircraft 1930–1945 (1st ed.). New York: Aero Publishers Inc. p. 99. ISBN 0-8168-6500-0. 
  2. ^ Krzyżan, M. (1988), p. 288


  • Marian Krzyżan (1988). Międzynarodowe turnieje lotnicze 1929–1934 [International Air Tournaments 1929–1934]. Biblioteczka Skrzydlatej Polski (in Polish). Warsaw: WKiŁ. p. 288. ISBN 83-206-0637-3. 
  • Thompson, Jonathan (1963). Italian Civil & Military Aircraft 1930–1945 (1st ed.). New York: Aero Publishers Inc. p. 99. ISBN 0-8168-6500-0.