Topic Author
Posts: 1449
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2001 8:28 am

Wright Flier Question...

Wed May 05, 2004 8:16 am

Hi Guy's...

I was just watching "The Wright Challange" on the History Channel; and I noticed shots of very detailed blueprints and drawings of the Wright Brothers' aircraft..The question I have is where did they come from?.As I understand the history of the "air race" the Wright brothers were VERY secretive of their designs for fear of losing out on the prize...Were these design drawings supplied by the Smithsonian or some other museum?


Carpe Pices
Posts: 3737
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2003 11:30 am

RE: Wright Flier Question...

Wed May 05, 2004 9:37 am

I was wondering the same myself.
I have always wondered if some of the data/measurements were incorrect or skewed in order to keep someone from using the plans to build a workable airplane if they were stolen or copied. Only the Wright Bros knew the correct measurements or if designs were changed on the fly so to speak and not transferred to the drawings.
We know it was really cold (good air density) and windy at Kitty Hawk that day as well, contributing to the success of the flight.


Posts: 2398
Joined: Sun Sep 30, 2001 5:39 am

RE: Wright Flier Question...

Wed May 05, 2004 9:50 am

If I remember correctly those blue prints were made from the Wright Flyer itself. They used photos of the flyer during it's recovering, and measurements made to the flyer itself to recreate it.

They also made detailed observations of how it was made because they were going to use the same tools to recreate it.
At worst, you screw up and die.
Mr Spaceman
Posts: 2723
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2001 5:09 am

RE: Wright Flier Question...

Sat May 08, 2004 5:05 am

Hi guys.

You're correct PPGMD.

In the May 2003 issue of Flying magazine there's a great 8 page article (with excellent photos) called "The Wright Experience" that's all about building the flyable, authentic reproduction of the 1903 Wright Flyer. The airplane that tried to re-create the first powered flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina last December.

Here's an excerpt from that article ........

"The restored 1903 Wright Flyer hangs in the Smithonian's National Air & Space Museum in Washington and, as part of a 1985 conservation effort, the museum made detailed blueprints of the airplane. There are also drawings made by Orville Wright and Louis Christman in 1928, and drawings made by the Science Museum of London while the plane was on display there in the 1930s and '40s."

"the only way to build the same plane that flew on December 17, 1903 - and to have any realistic assurance that the reproduction would actually fly - was to go back and retrace all of the Wright brothers' developmental steps, using letters, documents and other original source material."

Chris  Smile
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