|Sk 7 - De Havilland D.H. 60 Moth (1930-1936)|
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Havilland had produced many successful
lightplane designs in the beginning of the interwar period. The company
became convinced that military trainers was a large future market. The
modern D.H. 60M Moth biplane, with structure of metal rather than wood,
was converted to the D.H. 60T Moth Trainer military variant. This aircraft
was further developed to the great success D.H. 82 Tiger Moth. Both
types were used in the Swedish Air Force for basic training (Sk 9 and Sk 11).
aircraft of other Moth versions were used
for some years by the Air Force. Both aircraft got the
designation Sk 7, although
none of them was used for training purpose. The two versions were also of quite different construction.
Both aircraft were bought via AB Aeromaterial, the general agent of de
Havilland Co. in Sweden.
first of the two was a de Havilland D.H.
60X Cirrus Moth. It had with the civil registration S-AABN taken
part of the expedition in 1928 to find and rescue the crew of the
airship Italia. The Italian General Umberto Nobile had in the summer of
1928 made a hazardous flight over the north pole with Italia, but had
crashed on the return voyage. Nobile
himself (as first man!) was saved by Lieutenant Ejnar Lundborg, but
during a later flight to the distressed airship crew aboard on an ice
floe, Lundborg crashed with his heavy
S 6 (Fokker CVE). The
Cirrus Moth was purchased to get a lighter aircraft as replacement for
the destroyed S 6.
the aircraft returned to Sweden, it was provided to the Air Force. It
was approved for duty first in June, 1930 and got the SwAF/n 51. In
December the same year, it crashed. It was officially written off in
January 1931. During its few months of service, the aircraft was used by
the Air Force Staff.
two-seat aircraft was powered by a de Havilland Cirrus four-cylinder
engine of 80 hp.
January 1931, a new aircraft, now a D.H.
60M Gipsy Moth, was
bought from AB Aeromaterial as a replacement for the crashed aircraft.
It got the Air Force registration 552. The Air Force Staff used the
aircraft until it crashed in April 1936.
The Gipsy Moth had a de Havilland four-cylinder Gipsy II engine, delivering 105 hp.
Photo at top: The D.H. 60X Cirrus Moth at Ljungbyhed four months before the crash that destroyed the aircraft.
Photo below: The D.H.
60M Gipsy Moth at an overhaul in 1934.
Length: 7,30 m. Span: 9,15. MTOW: 800 kg. Max. speed: 135 km/h
© Lars Henriksson