Stearman-Hammond Y-1

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Stearman Hammond Y-1 at Langley November 1938.jpg
Role Utility monoplane
National origin United States
Manufacturer Stearman-Hammond Aircraft Corporation
Designer Dean B. Hammond
Number built approx 20

The Stearman-Hammond Y-1 was a 1930s American utility monoplane built by the Stearman-Hammond Aircraft Corporation and evaluated by the United States Navy and the British Royal Air Force.[1]


Y-1 testing at Langley

In the early 1930s Dean Hammond designed the Hammond Model Y, a low-wing monoplane twin-boom pusher monoplane.[1] Hammond cooperated with the aircraft designer Lloyd Stearman to develop the type for production.[1] They formed the Stearman-Hammond Aircraft Corporation in 1936 to build the aircraft as the Stearman-Hammond Y-1.[1] The first aircraft was powered by a 125 hp (93 kW) Menasco C-4 piston engine driving a pusher propeller.[1] The performance was not impressive so it was re-engined with a 150 hp (112 kW) Menasco C-4S and re-designated the Y-1S.[1] Although designed to be easy to fly the high price meant only 20 aircraft were produced.[1]

The aircraft had no rudder as such, the tailplane fins being adjustable but fixed in flight. Turning was by differential aileron and elevator alone.

Operational history[edit]

Amelia Earhart in a Stearman Hammond Y-1 with the US Department of Commerce's Bureau of Air Commerce mark

In 1934 the Bureau of Air Commerce held a competition for a safe and practical $700 aircraft. In 1936 the winner of the competition was the Stearman-Hammond Y-1, incorporating many of the safety features of the Ercoupe W-1. Two other winners were the Waterman Aeroplane and a roadable autogyro from the Autogiro Company of America- the AC-35. 25 examples were ordered by the bureau at a price of $3190 each. The first delivery was considered unacceptable in finish, prompting the production of the re-engineered Y-S model.[2]

Two Y-1S, serial numbers 0908 and 0909,[3] were used for radio controlled development trials by the United States Navy as the JH-1.[4] A successful unmanned radio-controlled flight was made with a JH-1 drone on 23 December 1937 at the Coast Guard Air Station, Cape May, N.J. Takeoff and landing was controlled via a landbased radio set; for flight maneuvers, control was shifted to an airborne TG-2.[5]

KLM purchased a Y-1 (PH-APY) for use in training their pilots in tricycle undercarriage.[6]

The Royal Air Force also evaluated a former KLM Y-1S in the 1940s.[1]


Hammond Model Y
Prototype for the 1934 Bureau of Air Commerce safe airplane competition.[7][8]
Stearman-Hammond Y-1
Prototype aircraft with a 125hp (93kW) Menasco C-4 engine.
Stearman-Hammond Y-1S
Production aircraft with a 150hp (112kW) Menasco C-4S engine.
United States Navy designation for two Y-1S used for tests.[4]


 United Kingdom
 United States

Aircraft on display[edit]

  • NC15521, a Y-1S at the Netherlands Transport Museum, Nieuw Vennep, The Netherlands.
  • NC15522, a Y-1S at the Hiller Aviation Museum, San Carlos, California, United States.

Specifications (Y-1S)[edit]

Data from Smithsonian Institution's National Air & Space Museum[9]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Capacity: 1
  • Length: 26 ft 11 in (8.20 m)
  • Wingspan: 40 ft 0 in (12.19 m)
  • Height: 7 ft 7 in (2.31 m)
  • Empty weight: 1,400 lb (635 kg)
  • Gross weight: 2,150 lb (975 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Menasco C-4S piston engine, 150 hp (110 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 113 kn; 209 km/h (130 mph) at 3000 ft (915 m)

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Orbis 1985, p. 2958
  2. ^ Roger D. Launius. Innovation and the development of flight.
  3. ^ "Aircraft: Stearman-Hammond JH-1" AeroWeb: The Aviation Enthusiast Corner. Web. 3 August 2010. <"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 15 January 2009. Retrieved 3 August 2010.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)>.
  4. ^ a b Andrade 1979, p. 198
  5. ^ Armstrong, William J., and Roy A. Grossnick. United States Naval Aviation, 1910–1995. 4 ed. Washington: Naval Historical Center, 1997. Print.
  6. ^ Flight p482
  7. ^ FLIVVER AIRPLANE DRIVES AS EASILY AS AN AUTOMOBILE Popular Science, October 1935, rare photos of first flying prototype
  8. ^ "Push Type Flivver Plane Easy To Control" Popular Mechanics, October 1935
  9. ^ "Stearman-Hammond Y-1S". National Air & Space Museum. Retrieved 14 July 2018..


  • Andrade, John (1979). U.S.Military Aircraft Designations and Serials since 1909. Midland Counties Publications. ISBN 0-904597-22-9.
  • The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985). Orbis Publishing.
  • "Rational Unorthodoxy", Flight, pp. 482–484, 18 November 1937

External links[edit]

Media related to Stearman-Hammond Y-1 at Wikimedia Commons