Engine Continental Hp

Kellett Autogiro Company

Autogiro inventor, pilots, engincersandniaiiufacturersof the early autogiro. Left to right: NkkLudtHnghm, officer of Kellett; Rod Kellett and Wallace Kellett of Kellett Aircraft; Harold Pit cairn, Pitcairn Autogiro; W. L LePage, Chief Engineer, Kellett; fini Ray, Test Pilot at Pitcaini; and Guy Miller, Test Pilot of Kellett in 1931 at Philadelphia. Shown standing on the Kellett autogiro is the autogiro inventor. luan De la Cierva. (Kellett Photo)

Autogiro inventor, pilots, engincersandniaiiufacturersof the early autogiro. Left to right: NkkLudtHnghm, officer of Kellett; Rod Kellett and Wallace Kellett of Kellett Aircraft; Harold Pit cairn, Pitcairn Autogiro; W. L LePage, Chief Engineer, Kellett; fini Ray, Test Pilot at Pitcaini; and Guy Miller, Test Pilot of Kellett in 1931 at Philadelphia. Shown standing on the Kellett autogiro is the autogiro inventor. luan De la Cierva. (Kellett Photo)

Kellett Kl-X

The Kellett Brothers, Wallace and Rod, became interested in autogiros and obtained a license under the Autogiro Company of America.

Wallace had been a World War I aviator and after the war had sold French-built Farman airplanes in the United States.

Rather than use the proven Cierva or Pitcairn designs, they went their own way. Their entry was described by Keliett's Engineering Report No, 8 as an "extremely light, single-place experimental autogiro." It was designated the Kl-X. The airframe was designed to receive any one of three rotor systems: a two-bladed rigid type, a three-bladed hinged type, or a four-bladed hinged type. The two-bladed type was the only one built. The original design was to use a 27-foot 6-inch diameter rotor, but the di ameter was increased to 32-feet 6-inches. This required lengthening the fuselage to permit the rotor to clear the vertical tail surfaces when il rotated.

The rotor was of wooden monocoque construction using a Gottingen 449 airfoil faired into a 40x12 inch center section. The rotor hub and bearings to permit the rotor to teeter like a seesaw were housed inside the center section.

The fuselage construction was spot welded stainless Steel angles. The Budd Company, auto body builders in Philadelphia, who were pioneers in spot welding stainless steel aircraft structures built the fuselage.

The landing gear was made from welded steel tubing. The hydraulic shock struts had an 8-inch travel, using stacked rubber discs for taxi ing. The wheels were equipped with 18x3 high pressure tires.

The wings were actually tail surfaces. All were of wood construction.

The entire autogiro except the rotor was covered with airplane fabric and doped.

The original powerplant was a Szekley (pronounced Zay-Kay) three cylinder, air cooled, radial engine giving 40 horsepower at 1800 rpm. This was changed during testing to a five cytin-

Kellett's first autogiro, the Kl-X. This one never left the ground. Kellett turned Jo the Autogiro Company of America rotor systems u'Jjfii they became a licensee. This craft began with a 45 hp Szekley radial, then changed to 65 hp Lambert. (Kelletl Photo)
Continental Engine

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Another view of the K-1X with the Szekley engine. (Kellett Photo)

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