Designed in 1917,
the E-1 was built by Standard Aircraft in Elizabeth, New
mainly of wood, a contract for the first 4 prototypes
was accepted by the Army Signal Corps as an airfield defense
production began in January of 1918 the first 2 were delivered
with the 100 hp Gnome rotary engine.
Stability and maneuverability were acceptable but
the aircraft was considered underpowered and lightly armed
with only one machine gun.
The order for the other 2 was cancelled.
All was not lost however as the Air Corps needed
advanced trainers and, with some modifications, 460 were
ordered with the 100 hp Gnome.
The Gnome engine was hardly the engine for training
by mid-1918 and production stopped after 93 were built.
Towards the end of 1918 an additional 75 were built
with the 80 hp Le Rhone rotary engine that was license-built
by the Union Switch Company.
When World War I ended in November of 1918, all
orders were cancelled.
was one of the later versions built with the license-built
80 hp Le Rhone engine and had been owned by a Mr. J. B.
Petty and loaned for display at the U.S.A.F. Museum in
Dayton, Ohio for over 40 years.
After Mr. Petty passed on, the aircraft was sold
at auction by his estate for $40,000.
The new owner contacted Kermit and with an additional
$10,000 for his efforts, acquired the aircraft in 1991.
It is 1 of only 2 remaining examples left in the
other aircraft is on display at the Virginia Aeronautical
society in Richmond, Virginia.
This aircraft will be an easy one to
restore to flyable condition.
This aircraft was last flown at the U.S.A.F. Museum,
in the early 1970ís by famed movie pilot, Frank Tallman.
Frank was killed in an unfortunate flying accident
several years later.
In 1985, Kermit was fortunate to acquire his entire
collection of 36 aircraft.
The 80 hp Le Rhone
was a very dependable engine.
It was used on many early World War I aircraft.
The Le Rhone design is one of the few rotary engines
that have any amount of throttle control.
As in all rotary engines, the engine crankshaft
is bolted to the airplane and the propeller is bolted
to the engine, where the whole combination spins around
as one unit.
All rotaries utilize a blip switch,
which is generally mounted on the top of the control stick.
With it, the pilot can control the engine power
by turning the electricity from the magnetos to the spark
plugs on and off.
The Le Rhone design is one of the few rotaries
that have any degree of throttle ability.
There are 2 levers in the cockpit to control the
controls a tapered needle valve that regulates
how much fuel the engine receives.
The other operates a slide valve located in an
air box, mounted on the rear of the fixed crankshaft.
The slide valve opens and closes, which determines
how much air the engine is allowed to take in.
When the air and the fuel enter the hollow, fixed
crankshaft and are sucked into the engine crankcase.
Maximum engine speed is 1200 rpm.
With the 2 levers, he can throttle the engine
down to a speed around 800 rpm.
Below that point, the engine just quits. Since 800 rpm is too fast for taxiing and landing, the blip
switch on the control stick is utilized to kill
the engine and keep the aircraft slowed down. With the
2 levers to control the fuel and the air, the pilot is