Friday, April 16, 2010
SPENCER “AIR CAR”
|STANDARD DATA: Gross wt. 3,200. Empty wt. 2,190. Fuel capacity 94. Wingspan 37'4". Length 26'5". Engine 285-hp Continental.
PERFORMANCE: Top mph 147. Cruise mph 135. Stall mph 43. Climb rate 1,000. Takeoff time 16 sec. Range 700.
The Air Car is a four-place retractable with a strong family resemblance to the old Republic Seabee. The resemblance is no accident because the Air Car was designed by the same man, P.H. Spencer. The Seabee was designed in metal, but Spencer has gone back to wood covered with fiberglass for the basic Air Car hull structure. Extensive use is made of molded fiberglass for the fuselage, cabin section, engine cowl, wing root fairings, tips, floats, and miscellaneous parts. The heart of the Air Car design is a single steel-tube weldment combining the engine mount, wing-spar carrythroughs, and lift strut attach points. This steel skeleton attaches to the hull and carries all major flight loads. The all-wooden wings have a mahogany threeply skin. The original powerplant was a 260-hp Lycoming; a 210- or 285-hp Continental may also be mounted on the airframe.