Debatable Points
Regarding Construction Details
[Updated 3/5/2003] 
The plans we are using were developed directly from the 1903 Wright Flyer after it was returned to the Smithsonian in the United States from a museum in England where it was displayed until the Smithsonian agreed that the Wright Flyer was the first successful heavier than air vehicle carrying a pilot under control.

Plans Dimensions: While not a debatable point, people have noted that the measurements in the plans often do not "add up".  Quite frankly, we believe this type of error is common to all "home built aircraft" (and probably commercial aircraft until the bugs have been worked out of the plans).  So far, we have found the plans to be fairly accurate in this regard.

Still, there are questions about the exact parts and materials used.  It is the intent of this page to post the controversy and our decision.  Any inputs would be appreciated.  Email me:  Steve Adkins ... 

Index:
- A 14-inch lathe wasn't big enough
- What material was used for covering?  What coating?
- Rear opening in rib for the rear spar
- How to climb aboard
- Unknown sticks  ... anybody know what these are for?


Clicking on photo
may enlarge
 
 
 
Did Charles Taylor bore the engine crankcase of the Wright Brothers' 14-inch lathe? 

There had been some controversy as to whether Charles Taylor bored out the engine crankcase using the 14-inch lathe in the Wright Brother's shop.  The book,  The Wright Brothers Mechanician available from EAA at $34.95, describes a recent find by the authors of four "riser" blocks in a keg of scrap metal (undisturbed for 50 years!).  The riser blocks were used to raise the head and tail stocks of the lathe to accomodate a large part could be mounted for machining as shown.  [Large] 

 
 
 
 
 

  Covering: What material was used?  Was it painted or treated? [Return to Top]

 
  
 
Is this a repair to the rib after sustaining damage?  

Or a design change (or original design) to allow a deeper rear spar?  

 
 


 

Boarding 

One on-going discussion is how to get aboard, from the front or rear?  And once making that selection, what does one do next? 

Based on several sources, the Wright brothers would start the engine by each pulling a prop ... then one of the brothers would climb aboard ... clearly, they are getting aboard from the front. 

The tangle of guy wires makes this very difficult. 

My claim is to stand immediately in front of the wing behind the elevator pivot, stick head under and through the "X" cross braced wires, then step onto the wing warp saddle, turn, and then ease down onto your knees and then to the prone position.  I believe the muslin would act like a canvas lawn chair providing more support to the knees than one might expect.
[return to Log Feb 29 "boarding"] 
 

 
 

 

Sticks ... View 1 ... View 2  
Added Sticks to tension wires (purpose unknown) 
- Hold onto when proping the aircraft?
      .... no, too close behind prop! 
[return to log Feb 5, "cross-bar"]
 
 


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