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Smallest Flying Machine  
User currently offlineFlexo From St. Helena, joined Mar 2007, 406 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 5923 times:

Ok we all know what are the biggest aircraft ever built as they get plenty of attention in the forums here. But what about the small ones?
What is actually the smallest "flying machine" that was ever able to take a full grown human into the skies (If measured by MTOW or wing span I don't care)?

To make it a little more difficult it should be able to:
- Land and take off without help and on even terrain
- Stay in the air for at least an hour

Any guesses?

24 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAvioniker From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 1109 posts, RR: 11
Reply 1, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 5914 times:

The BD5 comes to mind but I'm pretty sure I saw something smaller at Oshkosh in 69 or 70.
 Smile

Merry Christmas  Silly



One may educate the ignorance from the unknowing but stupid is forever. Boswell; ca: 1533
User currently offlineBoeingOnFinal From Norway, joined Apr 2006, 476 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5900 times:

This comes to mind:


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © John Myers



Depends on what you defines as "piloted machine" though, but this is the smallest AEROPLANE I have seen. If there are smaller aircrafts out there I am not sure of.



norwegianpilot.blogspot.com
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17003 posts, RR: 67
Reply 3, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5890 times:

Pretty sure it's the Cri-Cri:

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Francois-Xavier Simon
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brian Nicholas




"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5880 times:

Although this may not be what you are looking for, I would venture to say that this is the lightest weight flying device that can carry aloft a human and meet your requirements. They are usually in the 40-80lb range...

Powered Paragliders (my next hobby, I think)



There are also strap on motors for hang-gliders allowing for takeoff from a level field with no wind. A skilled hang glider pilot, when assisted by one, and remain aloft for hours and travel great distances...



User currently offlineZANL188 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 3504 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5880 times:
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Quoting Flexo (Thread starter):
What is actually the smallest "flying machine" that was ever able to take a full grown human into the skies

How do you define "Flying Machine"?  Smile

I believe Jet Packs would be the smallest...

http://www.jetpackinternational.com/

They'd have a hard time with the hour duration though... at least the ones flying now....



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User currently offlineAvioniker From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 1109 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5864 times:

BD-5: The single-seat fuselage was miniscule, barely 4 m (13 ft) long. The wing was mounted low and spanned just over 6.4 m (21 ft) and the airplane took-off and landed on tiny, retractable, tricycle landing gear. The factory offered a set of shorter wings (4.3 m/14 ft 4 in span) but almost no one flew with them.

Cri-Cri: The tiny Cri-Cri has a wingspan of 16.1 ft (4.9 m) and is a mere 12.83 ft (3.9 m) in length.

Very close to a draw although the BD had a much larger fuselage volume.

Now if I can only find my 1969 Oshkosh pics. . .

 Smile



One may educate the ignorance from the unknowing but stupid is forever. Boswell; ca: 1533
User currently offlineFlexo From St. Helena, joined Mar 2007, 406 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5864 times:

Interesting aircraft!
It seems like the Bumblebee needs a lot of speed with that small wingspan or am I off here?

Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 5):
How do you define "Flying Machine"?

I believe Jet Packs would be the smallest...

Actually Jet Packs were the reason I put the one hour duration there...  Wink


User currently offlineATCT From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2275 posts, RR: 38
Reply 8, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 5818 times:

I believe according to Guiness it is the Bumblee pictured above. The span is tiny though it might weight more than a Cri Cri.

Looking at the Cri-Cri though I have seen alot of ultralights (microlight in some ares of the world) that are similiar in size and weight. The "Air-Bike" comes to mind. Now if you mean certified aircraft in the FAA sense of the word, then the Bumblebee is your plane.

ATCT



"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing." - Walt Disney
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6347 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 days ago) and read 5799 times:

Try the Stits "Sky Baby":

http://www.airventuremuseum.org/coll...on/aircraft/Stits%20Sky%20Baby.asp

:D I don't know how it compares to the Cri-Cri, however it can be legally flown without a multi-engine rating  Wink



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineBoeingOnFinal From Norway, joined Apr 2006, 476 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 5660 times:

Those machines are freakishly small. I mean, any aircraft that would shift the C of G out of the forward limit when looking forward to see the instruments is to small for me.  Smile

Quoting Flexo (Reply 7):
It seems like the Bumblebee needs a lot of speed with that small wingspan or am I off here?

Well, being a biplane and probably very light, I would assume it is not that bad at all. And without assuming to much, that little thing looks extremely unstable on ground being very tall compared to a small wheelbase and having a C of G quite high. Would be interesting to know the stallspeed though.



norwegianpilot.blogspot.com
User currently offlineWILCO737 From Greenland, joined Jun 2004, 8971 posts, RR: 76
Reply 11, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 5647 times:
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Wouldnt be a mosquito the smallest flying "machine" Big grin Big grin or even smaller bugs who are able to fly Big grin

WILCO737 (MD11F)
 airplane 



It it's not Boeing, I am not going.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17003 posts, RR: 67
Reply 12, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 5638 times:



Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 11):
Wouldnt be a mosquito the smallest flying "machine" Big grin Big grin or even smaller bugs who are able to fly Big grin

Biomachine yes. Though of course microbes and viruses also fly. Lighter than air though. Maybe that's cheating.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineWILCO737 From Greenland, joined Jun 2004, 8971 posts, RR: 76
Reply 13, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 5637 times:
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Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 12):
microbes and viruses also fly. Lighter than air though. Maybe that's cheating.

Oh, I wasnt thinking about them Big grin You are right... they are indeed SMALL....

WILCO737 (MD11F)
 airplane 



It it's not Boeing, I am not going.
User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 14, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 5465 times:

Viruses can't fl -- wait you mean like airborne bacteria? C'mon, they aren't flying (just falling with style  Wink ) -- and it just isn't voluntary. With a strong enough wind, we could all fly whether we want to or not, but that doesn't mean we're in control of the flight path.

I'd do an emergency fuel dump being airborne for an hour like that.  Wow!



The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17003 posts, RR: 67
Reply 15, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 5440 times:



Quoting Lehpron (Reply 14):
Viruses can't fl -- wait you mean like airborne bacteria? C'mon, they aren't flying (just falling with style Wink ) -- and it just isn't voluntary. With a strong enough wind, we could all fly whether we want to or not, but that doesn't mean we're in control of the flight path.

Fair point. So we're talking lightest controlled flight then. I guess it would be some sort of insect.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineBoeingOnFinal From Norway, joined Apr 2006, 476 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 5403 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 15):
I guess it would be some sort of insect.



Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 11):
Wouldnt be a mosquito the smallest flying "machine"

I think neither fulfill the original requirement:

Quoting Flexo (Thread starter):
What is actually the smallest "flying machine" that was ever able to take a full grown human into the skies

But I might be wrong  Smile



norwegianpilot.blogspot.com
User currently offlineN231YE From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5391 times:

All these responses yet one question remains...where in the heck is 2H4?  mischievous 

User currently offlineUAL747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 5370 times:






User currently offlineWILCO737 From Greenland, joined Jun 2004, 8971 posts, RR: 76
Reply 19, posted (6 years 7 months 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 5366 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
HEAD MODERATOR



Quoting UAL747 (Reply 18):

Very nice ones! I want an MD11F in that size Big grin

WILCO737 (MD11F)
 airplane 



It it's not Boeing, I am not going.
User currently offlineDEVILFISH From Philippines, joined Jan 2006, 4782 posts, RR: 1
Reply 20, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 5300 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 15):
Fair point. So we're talking lightest controlled flight then. I guess it would be some sort of insect.

MAVs qualify under man-made, light, controlled flying machines, while Nano-UAVs are actually insects with some "human intervention." However, they fail under the human payload criterion.  Smile

http://www.flightglobal.com/articles...racts-bids-for-cyborg-insects.html

Quote:
"Proposals for controlling insects using micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) and turning them into micro air vehicle (MAV) sensor platforms have been requested by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

[.....]

Insects would have MEMS inserted during their growth cycle, providing for production line-like integration with the creature's biological functions. 'During locomotion [the] insect thorax generates heat and mechanical power, which may be harnessed to power the microsystem payload,' says DARPA.

One goal is for a remote pilot to fly a cyborg insect to within 100m (300ft) of a target. Control could be maintained using pheromones or mechano-sensor activation and direct muscle or neural interfaces."



"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
User currently offlineFlexo From St. Helena, joined Mar 2007, 406 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 5263 times:



Quoting UAL747 (Reply 18):

Very nice videos indeed!

I wonder if any of those could actually carry the weight of an average human (~200 pounds)?
Some of those models are huge!


User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17003 posts, RR: 67
Reply 22, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 5239 times:



Quoting Flexo (Reply 21):
I wonder if any of those could actually carry the weight of an average human (~200 pounds)?

Not even close. I would guess even those largest models could only carry perhaps 20 pounds. Just a guess though

BTW the average for humans is way under 200 pounds. I would guess closer to 130-140 pounds for adults.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineFlexo From St. Helena, joined Mar 2007, 406 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (6 years 7 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 5187 times:



Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 22):
Not even close. I would guess even those largest models could only carry perhaps 20 pounds. Just a guess though.

Interesting, I thought it would be more than that considering the wingspan.

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 22):

BTW the average for humans is way under 200 pounds. I would guess closer to 130-140 pounds for adults.

I guess I should have phrased it "average adult male".


User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17003 posts, RR: 67
Reply 24, posted (6 years 7 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 5155 times:



Quoting Flexo (Reply 23):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 22):
Not even close. I would guess even those largest models could only carry perhaps 20 pounds. Just a guess though.

Interesting, I thought it would be more than that considering the wingspan.

I've flown some model aircraft. Nothing as advanced as those in the movies, but anyway. They are ridiculously light for their size.

Quoting Flexo (Reply 23):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 22):

BTW the average for humans is way under 200 pounds. I would guess closer to 130-140 pounds for adults.

I guess I should have phrased it "average adult male".

Maybe in Germany or Sweden. But globally the average adult male is probably down around 150 pounds. It only takes one trip to Southeast Asia to feel like a giant.  Smile



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
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