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Curtiss A-2 V-2

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This object is on display in the Boeing Aviation Hangar at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.


Among the most successful early engines marketed in the United States were those designed and built by aviation pioneer and inventor Glenn Curtiss. Early Curtiss engines of one and later two cylinders were designed to power motorcycles. In 1904 a two-cylinder, V-type engine-believed to be the first Curtiss aircraft engine-was modified to power Capt. Thomas S. Baldwin's California Arrow. In 1905 the twin-cylinder motorcycle engine was developed into a more powerful airship engine, designated A-2, which powered many early American dirigibles.

This 1909 A-2 engine was purchased in 1910 from the R. O. Rubel, Jr. & Co., the southern distributor for Curtiss motorcycles and engines, by Mr. James Campbell of Easthampton, Massachusetts. Campbell used it in a Curtiss-type aircraft that he designed and constructed. Campbell's aircraft may have been the only heavier-than-air aircraft to use the A-2 engine.

Gift of Larry D. Lewis.

Manufacturer: Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company

Date: 1909

Country of Origin: United States of America

Dimensions: Diameter: 25.4 cm (10 in.), Height: 43.2 cm (17 in.), Width: 7.94 cm (3.125 in.)

Case Diameter: 25.4 x 43.2 cm (10 x 17 in.)
Crankshaft: 7.9 cm (3 1/8 in.)

Physical Description:Type: Reciprocating, V-type, 2 cylinders, air cooled Power rating: 5 kW (7 hp) at 1,500 rpm Displacement: 1 L (60 cu in) Bore and Stroke: 8.26 mm (3.25 in.) x 9.21 mm (3.625 in.) Weight: 23 kg (50 lb)

Inventory number: A19800029000

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