The 1903 Wright Flyer: SpecificationsEngine: 12 horsepower, gasoline-powered engine that weighed 179 pounds. Built by the Wright Brothers and machine maker Charles E. Taylor. Completed in February 1903.
Propellers: Two, which rotate in opposite directions, 8.5 feet in diameter, each made of two layers of thin Silver Spruce glued together.
Wingspan: 40 feet, 4 inches.
Height: 7 feet (9 feet, 3 inches to top of propeller)
Weight: 605 pounds (without pilot)
Internal Structure: Ash and spruce.
Powerplant: 4-cylinder, 12-horsepower Wright engine.
Top speed: Approximately 30 miles per hour
Bracing, wires and strut fittings: Steel
Exposed parts of machine: Painted aluminum
Passengers: One (pilot). Aircraft must be flown lying chest-down on lower wing surface
Surface covering: "Pride of the West" Muslin
NOTE: The Wright brothers chose this particular fabric because it was very tightly woven and had low porosity. A major challenge for The Wright Experience is that this fabric, used chiefly for women’s undergarments, is no longer manufactured. Ken Hyde said that it is very important to have the fabric match the exact specifications as the muslin used by the Wrights in order to duplicate the flight test data.
Original aircraft is at the Smithsonian in Washington, DC. It was on loan in London for some 20 years until 1948.
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