Dart Weasel trainer aircraft


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26 May 2006
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we know the English Dart company,and its aircraft,Pup,Kitten
and Flittermouse,and here is a two seat trainer project,the


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The other unbuilt project mentioned is a Silver Dart advanced trainer with retractable gear and a Leonides radial. Does anyone have anything on that Dart Aircraft project?

Of course, these designs had little chance of success with the RAF at the time of the Munich crisis. Alfred Weyl had been a WWI Luftstreitkräfte pilot who later worked for Udet Flugzeug before moving to Britain. Presumably Eric (or Erich) P. Zander was also German-born since both of these Dart principals were interned as enemy aliens during WWII.

Below are the text of Flight articles on Dart (in reverse chronological order)

30 Nov 1939 (p.446)


The Weasel trainer, as developed by Dart Aircraft, Ltd., is a wooden two-seater low-wing monoplane with a tricycle undercarriage, split flaps and double fins and rudders. The pupil is placed in front of the instructor and the view from both cockpits is good. The wing is of the singlespar variety with a plywood-covered leading edge to take torsional stresses. A Cirrus Minor, or an engine of corresponding power, is specified.

The company has also designed the Silver Dart advanced trainer, a low wing monoplane with an Alvis Leonides engine or any other radial of up to 700 h.p. Slots and slotted flaps are fitted and the undercarriage retracts inwards, though a fixed cantilever gear can be installed.

Dart Aircraft, Ltd., 2, High Street North, Dunstable, Beds.


Flight 27 Oct 1938 (p.369)


[Caption:] One of several new types which are coming along for C.A.G. training, the Dart Weasel. In this general arrangement drawing it is shown in tricycle trainer form ; another version will be available with a side-by-side seater cabin layout. [end caption]

AFTER successful work on a number of sailplanes and light aeroplanes (the best-known of which is probably the single-seater Kitten), Mr. A.R. Weyl, of Dart Aircraft, is now proceeding with work on a medium-sized two-seater. There are actually two types of the Weasel, as the machine is known, but the differences are only those of undercarriage and fuselage. A private-owner type is being designed with a normal undercarriage and a training type with a conventional tricycle undercarriage; the latter has a simple skid to take
really heavy tail-down landings. The trainer also has open tandem seating arrangements, while the owner type, though still having full dual control, is a side-by-side-seater cabin machine.

In each case the wing is arranged in three parts - a centre section and two folding outboard wings - while the aerofoil section changes from root to tip with a wash-out similar to that of the Kitten, in which the stalling characteristics were very good. There is a single main spar and an auxiliary rear spar, while the wing is partly plycovered. Mechanically operated split flaps and differentially operated ailerons are fitted. The tail group is fully cantilever and the trimming is carried out by means of tabs. In standard form the fuselage is a plycovered box, but a steel tube structure has been designed as an alternative.

An interesting feature of the training type is that the rear seat is raised to give the instructor a rather better view. In common with the increasing practice, the machine is
designed to be flown from the front seat. The trainer is fully aerobatic.

Any engine up to 130 h.p. may be installed, but the performances given below are those with a 90 h.p. Cirrus Minor engine.

WEASEL data: Span, 36ft. iin. ; length, 27ft. 6in.; all-up weight, 1.565 lb.; weight empty, 925 lb.; wing-loading, 9.1 lb./sq. ft.; powerloading, 17.3 lb. /h.p.; maximum speed, 110 m.p.h. ; cruising speed, 100 m.p.h. ; stalling speed (without flaps), 45 m.p.h.; rate of climb, 600 ft./min.; and cruising range, 325 miles.

Makers: Dart Aircraft, Ltd., High Street North, Dunstable, Beds. (Dunstable 429.)

Flight 24 March 1938

DART AIRCRAFT, LTD., of 29 High Street North, Dunstable, are primarily interested in sailplane development work, but they have a two-seater design un the drawing board and are at present building an interesting experimental machine to private order.


Flight 19 March 1936 (p.316) under 'The Industry: New Companies'

Private company, registered March 11. Capital, £5,000 in 40,000 6 per cent, cumulative participating preference shares of 1s. each and 2,000 ordinary and 1,000 deferred shares of £1 each. Objects: to acquire the business of light aircraft manufacturers now carried on by Zander and Weyl, at Luton Road, Dunstable. Directors: Archibald J. Lucas, Chaddlesworth. Berks; Eric P. Zander, Luton Road, Dunstable; and Alfred R. O. Weyl, Luton Road, Dunstable. Registered office: Luton Road, Dunstable.
Thank you my dear Apophenia,and sorry never seen your respond.
In a March 1938 issue of The Aeroplane it was announced that:

'Dart Aircraft Ltd., 29 High Street North and Albion Street, Dunstable, Bedfordshire, which has recently been reorganised, is building an experimental machine to the order of an important client. Also the design of a two-seater is well-advanced and may later be built'

The 'experimental machine' for 'an important client' was the Handley Page Manx. Whether the 'two-seater' was the Weasel is not known. The Weasel, it is said, never progressed beyond the drawing stage, and no wood was ever cut for its fabrication, due to the lack of resources in so small acompany

[Source: A.W.J.G.Ord-Hume 'British Light Aircraft ..... 1920-1940']
The Aeroplane, December 15, 1939, still lists the Dart Weasel as a "Project". Details listed match those in Flight.

As avion ancien said, its unlikely that construction of the Weasel ever began.
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