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PWS-12 and PWS-14
PWS-12bis after modifications
Role Trainer biplane
National origin Poland
Manufacturer PWS
First flight November 1929
Primary user Polish Air Force
Number built 23

The PWS-12 was a biplane trainer designed and developed by Podlaska Wytwórnia Samolotów (PWS). It entered production as the PWS-14.


The PWS-12 was a single-engined two-seat training biplane, fit also for aerobatics, designed in 1928 by A. Grzędzielewski and August Bobek-Zdaniewski at the PWS factory. The design shared similar parts, including fuselage and engine, as a high-wing trainer fighter plane PWS-11, developed at the same time.[1] The main difference was the addition of a lower wing. It was powered by a nose-mounted Skoda-built version of the Wright J-5 Whirlwind radial engine. Two prototypes and an airframe for static tests were ordered by the Aviation Department of the War Ministry in February 1928 (along with the PWS-11 prototypes). The first prototype was flown by Franciszek Rutkowski in November 1929. It was later improved - among others, a Townend ring replaced NACA cowling, and it was fitted with N-shaped struts between wings instead of perpendicular struts.[1] The second improved prototype was flown on 18 November 1930, and designated PWS-12bis.[1] Testing was successful and a production order for 20 aircraft was placed by the Polish Air Force.

In a meantime, the factory developed improved model PWS-14, featuring a change from wooden to a steel-tube fuselage, strengthened wings and other improvements, like a door in first cockpit's side. The War Ministry ordered a production of one PWS-14 and a similar modification of the series being in production. It caused some financial problems for the factory, since a production of PWS-12s had already started. As a result, the factory delivered in 1932 a series of 20 PWS-14, marked officially as PWS-12 (military numbers 57.1 - 57.20).[1] A further development of PWS-14 was PWS-16, and then PWS-26.

Operational service[edit]


The PWS-14s, officially marked as PWS-12s, were used by the Polish Air Force from 1933 in the Officer Training Centre in Dęblin and a Flying School in Grudziądz.[1] Most were next replaced by the PWS-16 and PWS-26, some remained in use until World War II in 1939.

The second prototype PWS-12bis (factory no. 358) was modified in 1931 to a role of an aerobatics aircraft. Among others, fuselage sides were made flat and a rudder shape was changed.[1] It received markings SP-AKE and was flown mainly by Lt. J. Orłowski. In March 1931 it was used in a trip to Estonia, and in April 1933 - to Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Austria and Czechoslovakia. Then, both prototypes were used for several years as utility aircraft in Aviation Technical Research Institute (ITBL). They were later stored in Dęblin.[1]


Prototype of wooden construction.
Second improved prototype
Improved model of mixed construction (aircraft delivered to the Air Force were marked as PWS-12)

Specifications (PWS-14)[edit]

Data from Glass, A. (1977)

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Capacity: 1 (Trainee)
  • Length: 6.9 m ( ft in)
  • Wingspan: 9 m (29 ft 6¼ in)
  • Height: 2.85 m ( ft in)
  • Wing area: 25 m2 ( ft2)
  • Empty weight: 775 kg ( lb)
  • Gross weight: 1100 kg (2425 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Skoda-Wright J-5A Whirlwind radial engine, 164 kW (220 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 190 km/h (118 mph)
  • Cruising speed: 175 km/h km/h ( mph)
  • Range: 640 km ( miles)
  • Service ceiling: 4500 m ( ft)
  • Rate of climb: 4.3 m/s ( ft/min)

See also[edit]

Related development


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Glass, A. (1977)
  • Glass, Andrzej (1977). Polskie konstrukcje lotnicze 1893-1939 [Polish aviation designs 1893-1939] (in Polish). Warsaw: WKiŁ. pp. 194–197. 
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. 
  • The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985). Orbis Publishing.