The 1903 Wright Brother’s Engine

Posted By on June 4, 2006

Terry HesslerTerry Hessler of Hessler Machine Tool gave an interesting lecture and then demonstrated his detail study and reproduction of an early Wright Brothers aircraft engine. His endeavor was covered on a History Channel TV special and DVD detailing the Wright Brother’s technology and first flight. We learned not only that Charles Taylor, the builder of the original engine, was an exceptional inventor … but that he was able to do a considerable amount on a very small budget.

Popular Mech 1903 Engine Breakdown
(note above is an illustration not by Hessler but by John Batchelor for a Popular Mechanics article on the Charles “Charlie” Taylor 1903 engine)
EAA 284 meeting
The highlight was of course a bunch of airplane nuts from EAA Chapter 284 gathered around to watch this hand built engine come to life. One could only imagine what it must have been like laying on a wing … or perhaps a few could do more than imagine? (see Today not many of us would think of flying with such a persnickety contraption, but marvel in what it took to have this vision. Thank Terry for giving us a peek and for your excellent presentation.
Checking out the 1903 replica
I’ll included the Huffman Prairie flight narrated by Tim Gaffney of the Dayton Daily News below.

1905 Wright Flyer Video


Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
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