Windecker Eagle

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Eagle
Role Light aircraft
National origin United States
Manufacturer Windecker Industries
Designer Leo and Fairfax Windecker[1]
First flight 7 October 1967[2]
Number built Two prototypes and six production aircraft[1]
Variants Windecker YE-5

The Eagle AC-7 Eagle 1 (USAF designation YE-5)[2] is an aircraft that was manufactured by Windecker Industries. It was the first composite airplane (foam and fiberglass construction) to receive FAA certification in December 1969 at a reported development cost of US$20,000,000. The fiberglass process was named "Fibaloy" by Windecker.[3]

Design and development[edit]

The Eagle's fuselage was molded in two pieces that were joined down the middle.[4] The first prototype had a fixed undercarriage but the second, known as the Eagle 1, had retractable tricycle gear. This aircraft first flew on 26 January 1969.[2] One prototype spun in on testing.[3]

Only eight Eagles were produced before production ended when the company ran out of money.[5]

No Eagle had been flying for many years, but one was restored and flown in December 2015, by Don Atchison, Mike Moore and a team commissioned by Chinese entrepreneur Wei Hang. Wei Hang holds the rights and the type certificate and plans to produce the aircraft in China for Asian sales.[1][5][6][7]

Specifications[edit]

General characteristics

  • Length: 28 ft 7 in (8.7 m)
  • Wingspan: 32 ft 2 in (9.8 m)
  • Height: 9 ft 6 in (2.9 m)
  • Empty weight: 2,150 lb (975 kg)
  • Gross weight: 3,400 lb (1,542 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Continental IO-520C , 285 hp (213 kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 182 kn; 338 km/h (210 mph) at sea level
  • Cruise speed: 177 kn; 328 km/h (204 mph) (75% power)
  • Stall speed: 57 kn; 106 km/h (66 mph) (flaps down)
  • Range: 956 nmi; 1,770 km (1,100 mi)
  • Service ceiling: 18,000 ft (5,500 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,220 ft/min (6.2 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 19.3 lb/sq ft (94 kg/m2)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Windecker Eagle Restoration Making Progress". avweb.com. Retrieved 20 July 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c Taylor 1974 p.481-2
  3. ^ a b "The Loaners". Flying: 52. May 1976. 
  4. ^ Mark Phelps (April 2013). "Composite Airplanes". Sport Aviation: 82. 
  5. ^ a b "Windecker Eagle Flies, Heads To China". AVweb. Retrieved 21 December 2015. 
  6. ^ Kauh, Elaine (10 April 2015). "Windecker Eagle Restoration Underway". avweb.com. Aviation Publishing Group. Retrieved 14 April 2015. 
  7. ^ Garvey, William (17 April 2015). "First All-Composite Aircraft Being Readied To Fly Again". Aviation Week & Space Technology. Retrieved 21 April 2015. 
  • Taylor, John W R (1974). Jane's All the World's Aircraft 1974-75. London: Jane's Yearbooks. ISBN 0 354 00502 2. 
  • Burmeier, Beverly. "Plastic Fantastic." The History Channel Magazine, September/October, 2005, pp. 22–23.
  • "The Eagle Returns", Private Pilot Magazine, Sept. 1978.

External links[edit]