NOT content with having won practically all the great European circuit aeroplane races during the past summer, M. Bleriot has been hard at work of late evolving new designs. His two latest monoplanes, one a racer and the other an experimental Canard or Duck are illustrated herewith. The new racer displays a general refinement of lines and an effort to reduce head resistance. To effect the latter, the upper flat cross member of the chassis has been lowered and placed under, instead of on top of the body. The resulting shortening of the steel-tube uprights of the chassis serves to reduce head resistance. But in addition to this the body has been made extremely narrow in front, while at the rear it flattens completely and terminates with an absolutely flat horizontal rudder. The extreme front end narrows down to not much over a foot in width but where the aviator sits it is of comfortable space. The motor and tanks are well covered with a long aluminium hood so that there is little chance for the aviator to get oil in his face from the exhaust of the motor or from leaking tanks. The usual running gear and shock absorbers are used in front while the bamboo skid is now placed at the extreme rear end of the body or fuselage. Besides a simple V-shaped support for the guys above the wings, this new racer has the same arrangement below, but the tubes which form the lower support are considerably longer than heretofore, and they are well guyed to the body. They carry at their lower ends the warping mechanism, which seems to be somewhat different from that used heretofore. The vertical rudder is of peculiar shape, its location on top of the body being similar to that of the rudder on the No. XII. This new model, No. 27, has a length of 7 meters (23 feet), a spread of 8.9 meters (29 feet), and a supporting surface of but 12 square meters (129 square feet). The weight complete is 430 kilograms (948 pounds), so that the weight lifted per square foot amounts to some seven pounds. With a 50-horse-power Gnome motor, this model Bleriot has developed a speed of 130 kilometers i^l miles) an hour. One of M. Bleriot's early monoplanes was constructed upon the same lines as his latest “Canard,” as this type of aeroplane, with pilot- in front in a covered body and motor behind, has come to be called. The Voisin brothers were the first to bring out a biplane of this type some months ago, although Santos-Dumont was the inventor of it and the first aviator in Europe, which he became with this type of machine. The Voisin “Canard” has a much longer body. It has been fitted with hydroplane floats and has made many excellent flights from the water. It is seen skimming the surface in one of our illustrations. The new Bleriot “Canard” is much shorter than the Voisin. It is a monoplane with a thick. short body projecting out in front, the horizontal rudder being at the bow. Two tiny vertical rudders on top of the main plane at each end serve to steer. The wings are guyed to an inclined rod underneath, which extends forward from a shoe on the bottom of a vertical post. There is no warping, generous ailerons being used instead. The leaf spring, axle and the strut to which the wings are guyed, recall the Nieuport monoplane. They are quite similar. The total over-all length of this new monoplane is but 5.5 meters (18 feet). The spread and surface are the same as with the racer, while the weight with a 5O-horse-power Gnome motor is 400 kilograms (882 pounds). The aviator's seat is so far forward that it would seem as though he ran very little chance of being injured by the motor in case of a smash, since there are five or six feet of stout fuselage between the engine and the pilot. No flights of any moment have been made so far as we know by this new machine as yet. There is no doubt that it will fly, however, nor that a machine of this type offers several advantages, such as have already been mentioned by Voisin in the description of his “Canard” in the Scientific American of recent date.
This article was originally published with the title "Two New Blériot Monoplanes" in Scientific American 105, 18, 384 (October 1911)