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General Aircraft Croydon

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ST-18 Croydon
GAL Monospar ST-18 Croydon, 1936
Role Cabin monoplane
Manufacturer General Aircraft
First flight 1935
Introduction 1935
Retired 1936
Number built 1

The General Aircraft ST-18 Croydon was a 1930s British cabin monoplane built by General Aircraft Limited.

Development

Following the mixed success of the earlier Monospar family of aircraft, the company designed a ten-seat light transport, the ST-18 (later named Croydon). Due to the longer-span wing, it was not a cantilever monospar wing but had to be fitted with bracing struts. The ST-18 was a low-wing monoplane, with a conventional tail unit and tailwheel landing gear, and hydraulically retractable main gear. It was powered by two Pratt & Whitney Wasp Junior radial engines mounted on the wing leading edges. It had a crew of three, and a cabin for ten passengers, a toilet and baggage compartment.[1]

Operational history

On 16 November 1935, the sole aircraft (T22, later G-AECB) first flew at Hanworth Aerodrome, piloted by Harry M. Schofield. It performed well, but did not attract any orders, so the aircraft was prepared to establish a record for an Australia to England flight. On 30 July 1936, Lord Sempill, Harold "Tim" Wood, and two other crew left Croydon Airport for Australia. On 7 October 1936, during the return flight from Darwin, navigation errors occurred during the flight over the Timor Sea, and the aircraft made a successful forced landing on a coral reef (Seringapatam Reef). The crew members were immediately transported off the reef by local fishermen, and the aircraft was abandoned.[1][2]

Specifications

Data from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985), 1985, Orbis Publishing, Page 1938

General characteristics

  • Crew: 3 (pilot, co-pilot and wireless operator)
  • Capacity: 10 passengers
  • Length: 43 ft 3 in (13.18 m)
  • Wingspan: 59 ft 6 in (18.14 m)
  • Height: 14 ft 3 in (4.09 m)
  • Wing area: 454 sq ft (42.18 m2)
  • Empty weight: 8,000 lb (3,639 kg)
  • Gross weight: 11,350 lb (5,148 kg)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney R-985 Wasp Junior SB 9-cylinder radial piston engine , 450 hp (336 kW) each

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 203 mph (327 km/h, 176 kn)
  • Range: 900 mi (1,448 km, 780 nmi)
  • Service ceiling: 19,500 ft (5,945 m)

Notes

  1. ^ a b Jackson (1974), p. 310
  2. ^ Flight 10 December 1936

References

  • The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft (Part Work 1982-1985), 1985, Orbis Publishing, Page 1938
  • A.J.Jackson, British Civil Aircraft since 1919 Volume 2, Putnam & Company, London, 1974, ISBN 0-370-10010-7, Page 310
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General Aircraft Croydon
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