The first real flight in a motorized airplane on Swiss territory are not carried out by a local pilot, but the German captain Paul Engelhardt, the herumkurvte on 10 February 1910, his Wright biplane in the Upper Engadine. But already in the same year flew the Geneva Armand Dufaux to Lake Geneva length.
A year earlier, the designer Louis Blériot, the founder of the French aircraft industry, with one of his machines flew over the English Channel as the first pilot and the sensational speed record of 97 km / h set in the big Airshow in Reims. Then he had to make an emergency landing with burning engine, however.
Yes, it was the heyday of the aviation pioneers and the first flight of enthusiasm by the public, which together streamed in ever greater numbers in the show and Wettfliegen to “these daring men in their flying machines” cheer. France was then leading flight nation in Europe, and the Blériot machines were regarded as particularly reliable and technically sophisticated. Our Blériot-model that can be viewed in the Museum of Transport, was also one of the very first aircraft, which was manufactured in a larger series.
How reliable and technically sophisticated was this monoplane proved among others the famous Swiss aviator Oskar Bider, who carried out many flights with him, including in 1913 the first crossing of the Pyrenees and in the same year, the first crossing of the central Alps (Bern – Milan).
That was a great machine that could afford the kind, and as 1914 world war broke out, and in all haste a Swiss “air force” had to be placed on the legs, because no was present, you bought the Blériot XI as one of the first aircraft from its private owner Oskar Bider. A number of other aircrafts was also discussed various pilots; other models of foreign manufacturers that were then visible at the National Exhibition 1914 in Bern, were summarily confiscated.
Our Bleriot XI apparently proved itself so well that it – a flying machine from the “stone age” of aviation! – Was redone airworthy World War II, after being shut down for 20 years.
- Design type: Monoplane, timber construction, covered with fabric
- Dimensions: Wingspan 11.0 m, length 8.4 m, height 2.87 m
- Weights: Unloaded 320 kg, 210 kg payload
- Engine: Model GnÃ´me 80 “Lambda”; air-cooled 7-cylinder rotary engine, rated 80 hp at 1200 rev/min
- Propeller: 2-sheet, plywood, diameter 2.4 m
- Speed: Max. horizontal 105 km/h
- Climb performance: Max. 1.4 m/s
- Service ceiling: 3500 m above sea level. M.
- Duration: 2 h 45 min
- Reach: 250 km