Kocjan Orlik
Страна: Польша
Год: 1937

M.Simons The World's Vintage Sailplanes 1908-45

M.Simons The World's Vintage Sailplanes 1908-45


  Antoni Kocjan’s last sailplane design was the Orlik. It was flown in 1937 and the first two completed were rushed to the Wasserkuppe to compete in the first Internationals there. The pilot Boleslaw Baranowski, in the prototype, made an outstanding flight of 302 km, landing near Berlin, the first time any sailplane from the Wasserkuppe had reached the German capital. In the final score list he was seventh, the highest placed Polish competitor, the other Orlik coming twelfth.
  In 1938 the Orlik 2 appeared with an improved fuselage and a better shaped cockpit canopy. The wingspan was increased to fifteen metres. Air brakes of Polish design were fitted underneath the leading edge of the wing, instead of spoilers on the upper surface. Also in 1938 a special Orlik, the Olympic Orlik or Orlik 3, was built as an entrant for the design competition to choose the sailplane for the proposed Olympic Games gliding contest in 1940. Hans Jacobs’ Meise won. The Poles always maintained that the decision was influenced by politics and that the Orlik was superior to the Meise in every respect. The Orlik was perhaps too refined for production all over the world, from plans, which was the intention behind the design contest. The wing was straight tapered with ‘gull’ dihedral. The air brakes were quite different from the German types commonly seen. They ran along underneath the wing near the leading edge, from close to the root to the neighborhood of the bend in the wing. When hinged down, with their leading edges forward, they were effective. The ailerons were divided into two sections to prevent binding at the hinges as the wings flexed. The usual plywood covered 'D' nose was used, with a diagonal torsion spar and box at the root.
  The wing was mounted in a mid position on the fuselage, with tidy fairings at the root, and the contoured canopy gave the Orlik 2 and 3 a much better shape, from the point of view of drag reduction, than the Meise.
  Some eighteen Orliks, of all marks, were built. Kocjan the designer, was executed in a Warsaw prison camp after his arrest by the Germans in 1944. He had been a prominent leader of the resistance.
  One Orlik was sent to the New York World Fair for exhibition in the Polish Pavilion in 1939. When war broke out it was kept in the USA and used for training military glider pilots. It eventually came onto the surplus market and was purchased by Paul MacCready. With it he won the 1948 and 1949 US Nationals and made many outstanding cross-country flights. His world record altitude of more than 9000 metres in the Sierra Wave, on the last day of 1948, was surpassed within 24 hours by John Robinson in the Zanonia. MacCready’s Orlik still survives. It was fitted at some time with a better, moulded plastic canopy. It is an Orlik 2 rather than Olympic Orlik.

  Technical data:
   Orlik 1: Spain, 14.40 m. Wing area, 14.1 sq m. Aspect ratio, 14.7. Empty weight, 148.0 kg. Flying weight, 233 kg. Wing loading 16.5 kg/sq m.
   Orlik 2: Span, 15.00 m. Wing area, 14.8 sq m. Aspect ratio, 15.2. Empty weight, 160 kg. Flying weight, 245 kg. Wing loading, 16.5 kg/sq m. Best glide ratio, 1 : 24.5 at 67 km/h. Minimum sinking speed, 0.67 m/sec.
   Olympic Orlik: As for Orlik 2, but empty weight, 168 kg. Flying weight, 263 kg. Wing loading. 17.8 kg/sq m. Best glide ratio claimed, 1 : 25.
The RS-1 Zanonia and, in the background, the Orlik 2. Both these sailplanes, which made great reputations in the USA, are shown here at Harris Hill, Elmira, NY, in the days of their greatest fame. They both survive today in good condition. Zanonia no longer carries the advertisements, but otherwise looks very much the same now as then.
Paul MacCready’s Orlik 2 in its record-breaking and championship-winning days. The canopy was later altered.
The Olympic Orlik prototype at Sezze in Italy. In the background is the Italian Pelicano.
Olympic Orlik