View Full Version : Can you help me find this?

I. M. Esperto
1st Sep 2003, 03:01
A fellow named Eichman in Brownsville TX designed and built a flying wing type aircraft in 1942.

It crashed, killing him in 1942.


(No wiseguys, please.)

1st Sep 2003, 05:43
Aerofiles: (http://www.aerofiles.com/_e.html)

Ellis Eichmann.

Aerobat 1 c.1937 = 2pOM flying wing; 40hp Continental. [NX17638].

A, B c.1946 = 1p and 2p flying-wings. No data.

Extract from the full NTSB report appended below:

"The pilot/builder/designer had constructed three airplanes in succession: Aerobat I, Aerobat II, and Aerobat III. Aerobat I was started in 1937, and it flew for the first time in 1942. This all metal airplane was a single seat delta wing design with a "T" tail, and the engine (tractor type) was in the front. This airplane accumulated approximately 600 hours before it was damaged and retired. Aerobat II was a two place side-by-side airplane with a wing and empennage almost identical to Aerobat I; it flew a limited but unknown number of times."

Witnesses reported to the IIC that the pilot/builder/designer completed Aerobat III in July of 1986 and was issued a Special Airworthiness Certificate in the Experimental Category.This airplane differed from its predecessors in that the engine was moved to the rear of the airplane (pusher type) and the wing was redesigned."
To which must be added the following, with tragic results. He would seem to have used the same registration for each aircraft he built, or the Aerofiles data is in error.

NTSB accident report: (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20001208X08386&key=1)

NTSB Identification: FTW97LA275.

Accident occurred Sunday, July 20, 1997 in BROWNSVILLE, TX.

Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/30/98.

Aircraft: EICHMAN AEROBAT III, registration: N17638.

Injuries: 1 Fatal.

The pilot/builder/designer was attempting to fly the airplane on its maiden test flight. During the takeoff roll, the pilot lifted the airplane's nose wheel off the runway two or three times, then the airplane lifted off the runway and climbed to an altitude approximately one half of the airplane's wingspan. The airplane immediately returned to the runway in a porpoise like motion and lifted off a second time with a hard right roll. The airplane then impacted the runway in an inverted position. Postaccident examination revealed the rudder exhibited crushed areas at the bottom and top. The top crushed area matched dimensionally to the four-belt driven wheel which turned the airplane's propeller. A test pilot reported that during previous high speed taxi runs, conducted in August 1987, he had to apply 'stop-to-stop' elevator stick movements to maintain a steady pitch attitude. A review of the video tape of the taxi tests revealed that the elevator was moving in what appeared to be 'stop-to-stop' movements. The same elevator movements were observed in a video tape of the accident airplane during the attempted takeoff. The test pilot said he believed the airplane 'had some kind of pitch oscillation problem.'

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:

Inadequate design by the pilot/builder/designer. Related factors were: the porpoise that was encountered by the pilot during the takeoff, and the subsequent jammed rudder.

Full report (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief2.asp?ev_id=20001208X08386&ntsbno=FTW97LA275&akey=1)

I. M. Esperto
1st Sep 2003, 06:11
ORAC - BINGO! Many thanks.