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Frenchman Jean de Voyod: Russian WW1 ace and Chinese aviation pioneer

richard

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This fighter was at least partially built :

http://www.ebay.de/itm/China-Anfange-der-Luftfahrt-Flugplatz-Koen-Pa-Original-Photographie-1923-/252174456515?hash=item3ab6c4d6c3:g:5ToAAOSwIwhWSyxJ

Jean de Voyod was a russian pilot of french origin .
 

Stargazer2006

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Great discovery, richard!

As most eBay images tend to disappear after a while, and since not the entire image there is about that airplane, I am attaching here the two pages that actually display that 1923-1924 single-seat pursuit, the Sesquiplan J. de Voyod, apparently designated by Jean de Voyod himself as the "JDV1" and built in his workshop with his five Russian and Chinese workers:
 

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Stargazer2006

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And here's the cutaway profile view enlarged for easier reading purposes.

As you can see, though the photos are dated 1923-1924, the plan itself bears mention of the date "1926".
Also, the type, which is designated as "JDV1" in two the album's captions, is called here the "Type S_" (I can't make out the second character, which looks a bit like a "w", the Russian "ш" ("sh") or the Hebrew "ש" ("shin").

Also, I have my doubts as to de Voyod being "a Russian pilot of French origin". The album seems to indicate that he always was French. All his memories are captioned in French, the 1930 Christmas menu indicates that he was part of the French Navy based in Chongking (China) and in 1946, he signs a photo "Jean de Voyod / Vichy-Clermont-Ferrand", clearly indicating that he was back in France at that time.
 

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Stargazer2006

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As I continued to investigate on Jean de Voyod, I found that another eBay seller is offering another de Voyod album at 8,500 euros:
http://www.befr.ebay.be/itm/Russland-Militarfliegerei-Gatchina-Fotoalbum-J-De-Voyo-1912-/251762653801

This album came before the other and roughly covers the period 1917-1923. The page is highly informative and full of images (reproduced below) but translating it would take a while as it is entirely in Russian.

It is the same album that was previously presented in auction catalogs of Russian art from Cazo, a French auction company, with a few pics and info:
http://www.cazo.fr/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/CATA_AR_22042015.pdf
http://www.cazo.fr/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Catalogue-Art-Russe-12-2015-W.pdf

This page from La gazette Drouot (the official publication of l'Hôtel des ventes Drouot, France's equivalent to Sotheby's) also features what seems to be the same album, with a text that gives similar information:
http://catalogue.gazette-drouot.com/ref/lot-ventes-aux-encheres.jsp?id=5001463

The two albums can be found in other auction sites on the web, sometimes with slightly different images offered. The following was especially interesting as it provided a decent size version of the Sesquiplan being built:
http://www.the-saleroom.com/de-de/auction-catalogues/nosbsch-and-stucke-gmbh-auktionen-berlin/catalogue-id-srnos10003/lot-ecd6db10-2f7f-496a-a2ab-a514016e1bed



So, let's try to summarize what we've got from these various sources:

Jean de Voyod definitely was a Frenchman. He is described in these sources variously as "a Russian aviator of French origin" or "a Russian WW1 ace of French origin", but the fact he was a "Russian pilot" or a "Russian ace" does not preclude his being 100% French. Many aviators served under different flags during various wars—think for instance of the many foreigners in Spain's civil war.

In 1917, he was a flying ace of the Imperial Russian Army as part of Colonel Krouten's regiment, then as part of the Kamenetsk-Podolsk squadron, and in 1918 as part of Kolchak's army. As an aviator who had emigrated to China, he came into service with Chinese aviation, until his return to France, being a member of l'Aéro-club français.

Besides many photos of individuals (a lot of Russian officers, notably) the "Russian" album includes the military aviation school in Gachina (1912-16), Gachina airfield, the christening of Sikorsky's "Ilya Muromets" in Gachina in 1916, the accidental landing of the same with Sikorsky at the controls, Korpusnoye military school airfield, the city of Omsk photographed in 1918 from a plane, Moukden in 1923-24 (where construction of the Sesquiplan pursuit took place), as well various aircraft types such as the Farman Type XVI and Type IV, a Russian-modified Daimler Albatros or the first "Voisin-canon".
 

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Stargazer2006

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And here's the larger photo of the Sesquiplan pursuit built in China:
 

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richard

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Have you any idea about the twin boom pusher (your "Album 1", page 2 , bottom) ?
 

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Stargazer2006

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richard said:
Have you any idea about the twin boom pusher (your "Album 1", page 2 , bottom) ?

Unfortunately not! I admit it's the one that most aroused my curiosity, along with the one that has upturned wing tip to its right.
Too bad we don't have a better quality image of that particular page, as it is most interesting...
 

Silencer1

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richard said:
Have you any idea about the twin boom pusher (your "Album 1", page 2 , bottom) ?

This twin-boom pusher is definitely Russian aircraft Porokhovshikov "Bi-kok"
http://flyingmachines.ru/Site2/Crafts/Craft28239.htm
Built in two prototypes, later one - with tracked undercarriage.

P.S. Some other Russian-built aircraft photos have been placed in album - it's a real pleasure to see them!
 

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Stargazer2006

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Silencer1 said:
This twin-boom pusher is definitely Russian aircraft Porokhovshikov "Bi-kok"
Built in two prototypes, later one - with tracked undercarriage.


Great job, Silencer1, thanks for identifying this rare bird!!
 

hesham

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Amazing work my dears,and new info for me.
 

Silencer1

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hesham said:
Amazing work my dears,and new info for me.

Another distinctive type - Olkhovskiy "Torpedo" (de Voyod album 2.JPG - upper right corner) two-seat fighter prototype
http://flyingmachines.ru/Site2/Crafts/Craft28206.htm

Some other aircraft with Russian roundels are well-know, although at this moment I'm unable name them.
Album is great - looks, like Jean de Voyod save a part of Russian aviation history with it
 

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Stargazer2006

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This topic is getting some pretty interesting developments! Thanks again Silencer1 for adding these rarities.

Have you got any idea how "Jean de Voyod" was spelt in Russian? I used many possible spellings but none returned any relevant pages... French pronunciation should be "duv-wah-yo" (final "d" being silent) but I have no idea how the Russians might have transcribed it...
 

Silencer1

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Skyblazer said:
This topic is getting some pretty interesting developments! Thanks again Silencer1 for adding these rarities.

Have you got any idea how "Jean de Voyod" was spelt in Russian? I used many possible spellings but none returned any relevant pages... French pronunciation should be "duv-wah-yo" (final "d" being silent) but I have no idea how the Russians might have transcribed it...

I found a page, but it's unavailable now...

ria1914.info/index.php?title=Войод_Жан_де

Looks, that his name spelled in Russian as it has been written, in most simple way.

Found a copy in search engine cahe:
Jean de Voyod Russian pilot of French origin, a member of the First World War. In 1917, a military pilot 16 Corps aviation detachment. Since August 1918 Kolchak. From Vladivostok emigrated to China. He served in the Chinese aviation, then moved to France. Member of the veteran French flying club. For documents of that time is usually from voice characteristic is much confusion in the writing of the names. In particular, the name of the pilot, a native of France, Jean De Voyoda different sources indicate as De Vaio, Devayot, Deviot, Devayod, Devoyod, Devanot, Devoid and even Devayst. He was awarded a variety of orders and medals. There was a deserter from the Red Army to Kolchak. From the chronicles of those years: Also On August 11 Alatyr school of aerobatics at Sviyazhsk station arrived pilots Ryabov on "Nieuport 23" and DeVayot on "Nieuport 17" seconded to the 23 th corps detachment, in which, after a hasty evacuation of Kazan was just two aircraft. August 19, 1918 and Devayot Ryabov pilots during the bombing sortie Kazan sat down at the airport, the busy white. August 20 they joined the staff of the Office of Air Fleet of the People's Army. During the battle for Kazan to the Whites as pilots flew Kudlaenko Nevyazhsky and thus deserted 7 pilots, representing 25% of all flight crews of the Red Army on this front. Pilot Alexander Ryabov, in his book of memoirs (Alexander Riaboff «ReminiscencesofaRussianPilot - Gatchinadays» (Smithsonianinstitutionpress, 1986) writes that he spent with De Voyodom a few days in the Red Army, and it was he who persuaded him to fly over the White Army.

And link to larger pictures from album https://vk.com/album-54309243_211249061
 

Stargazer2006

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Silencer1 said:
And link to larger pictures from album https://vk.com/album-54309243_211249061

This is getting better and better! I've saved each photo in the larger format. Here are a few interesting bits:
  • The "JDV" twin-fuselage school type with 80 hp Gnôme engine, 1914-1915.
  • The JDV "Réformé" with 25 hp two-cylinder Anzani engine, 1913.
  • Model° of engineer Orloff's remotely-controlled powered machine, 1914.
  • Jean de Voyod on Farman Type IV with 50hp seven-cylinder Gnôme rotative engine, 1912-1913.
  • Lieutenant Bersonoff's first cannon-equipped Voisin, 1917.

Interestingly, de Voyod captioned the Porokhovshikov "Bi-kok"as a "JDV" type. Did he design it?

° Why de Voyod spelt "Model" with a foreign spelling instead of the French "modèle" is beyond me...
 

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Stargazer2006

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I have changed the name of the topic to reflect its content more accurately and possibly appeal to forum members with an interest in early Russian and French aviation who might not have seen it before.
 

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I can't identify those """ Albatros """ ; I think , they could be russian types .

Thanks for any help

Richard
 

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Stargazer2006

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richard said:
I can't identify those """ Albatros """ ; I think , they could be russian types .

Well, the captions certainly describe it as an Albatros (therefore German) but modified with a 200hp Daimler engine, a Russian-made modification.
I don't know much about these early German types, but I'm sure this type can be found in AM's excellent research work here:
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,9755.0
 

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"Albatross" can be used here just as "Gotha" in France during the War , for every german bomber .
I know pretty well the Albatros types of WWI , and can't find anyone like this "two and half" bays biplane or single bay one .
We know Lebedev built Albatros during the War : maybe have we here Lebedev types ???
 

Stargazer2006

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richard said:
I know pretty well the Albatros types of WWI , and can't find anyone like this "two and half" bays biplane or single bay one .

Indeed, I realize now that the two images do not represent the same aircraft at all. Is the top one more like an Albatros you know? Or are they both dubious?
 

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Both are unknown to me .
The configuration of the second one is something like the pre-War Albatros D.E .
 

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I can´t identify both Types as Albatros-aircraft. In 1916 Albatros had no aircraft with 200HP Daimler engine. The only aircraft with a similar strong engine was the L.22 (D.IV) with Daimler D.IV (220PS).
 

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Albatros L.22 (D.IV)
 

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Stargazer2006

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Maveric said:
I can´t identify both Types as Albatros-aircraft. In 1916 Albatros had no aircraft with 200HP Daimler engine. The only aircraft with a similar strong engine was the L.22 (D.IV) with Daimler D.IV (220PS).

But don't forget the caption says this was a local modification, so it's probably not listed as an official variant.
 

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It appears the photos ended up in Switzerland. Enjoy!
Source: Bildarchiv ETH-Bibliothek Zürich
 

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nuuumannn

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I can't identify those """ Albatros """ ; I think , they could be russian types .

Thanks for any help


four years later... The aircraft with the caption 'Albatros Daimler 200hp 1916' looks suspiciously like a Royal Aircraft Factory R.E.5, but it has a single skid, whereas the type primarily had twin skids with each wheel. The reduced span lower wing was a high altitude export variant apparently. These were powered by 120 hp Austro-Daimlers or Beardmores.
 

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Judging by these accounts de Voyod was born in France and served in the Russian Tzar's Army. After the Tzar abdicated (1917), de Voyod served briefly in the Russian Red (Communist) Army from which he soon deserted to join one of the many Chinese warlords competing for power after the Last Emperor abdicated in 1912. The Chinese Imperial Palace had been slowly losing control for many decades. Like many other White (Royalist) refugees, de Voyod sold his military skills to the highest bidder (Chineses warlord)..
 
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