|Manufacturer||de Havilland Aircraft Company|
|Maiden Flight||17 April 1934|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseIn late 1933, the British aircraft manufacturing firm de Havilland embarked on a project to create a predecessor design for the DH.84 Dragon passenger aircraft; it was to incorporate many elements of the existing DH.86 Express design. The resulting DH.89 Dragon Rapide (initially Dragon Six, and later Rapide) design first took flight in 1934, and subsequent examples quickly became popular as short distance commercial passenger aircraft.
ww2dbaseIn Jul 1936, British MI6 intelligence agents Cecil Bebb and Major Hugh Pollard flew Francisco Franco from the Canary Islands to Spanish Morocco in a DH.89 Dragon Rapide aircraft at the onset of the Spanish Civil War.
ww2dbaseWhen the European War began, 205 examples of DH.89 aircraft had been built. Many of them were pressed into British military service under the designation of DH.89 Dominie. They were typically used for passenger transporting and radio navigation training. Furthermore, the British military ordered over 500 DH.89 Dominie aircraft with the more powerful Gipsy Queen engines. To increase production, the firm Brush Coachworks Ltd. was contracted to build these aircraft as well, and this firm ended up building the larger portion of this contract. By the end of the war, 731 examples were built.
ww2dbaseAfter the war, many DH.89 aircraft remained in service. The British Royal Air Force flew 81 of them as late as 1958, while many more were in service with commercial entities. Several are still in service at the time of this writing in 2010, some for recreational rides.
Last Major Revision: Jan 2011
|Machinery||Two de Havilland Gipsy Six inline engine rated at 200hp each|
|Armament||None; up to 8 passengers|
|Wing Area||32.00 m²|
|Weight, Empty||1,460 kg|
|Weight, Loaded||2,490 kg|
|Speed, Maximum||253 km/h|
|Rate of Climb||4.30 m/s|
|Service Ceiling||5,090 m|
|Range, Normal||920 km|
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James Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy, 23 Feb 1945