VDM Propeller, 3-Blade, Variable Pitch, Metal


Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Collection Item Summary:

Vereinigte Deutsche Metallwerke, or United German Metalworks, was a society of medium-sized firms formed in 1930. One of VDM’s member companies, the Heddernheimer Metal Company, initiated the development of metal propellers in Germany by introducing a ground-adjustable propeller in the late 1920s, similar in construction to the American Standard Steel propeller.

VDM’s Dr. Hans Ebert later developed an ingenious method of pitch actuation using a reversible electric motor mounted on the engine crankcase. Actuation was via a flexible shaft connected to a small primary drive reduction gearbox, which was in turn attached to a large annular gearbox fitted to the rear of the propeller hub.

VDM production of constant-speed propellers began in 1938. VDM was the leading German manufacturer of metal propellers before and during World War II, utilized by approximately 90 percent of the Luftwaffe's front-line aircraft.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum


  • Aluminum
  • Steel
  • Paint
  • Cadmium Plating


  • Rotor/Propeller: 360.7 x 30.5 x 50.8 x 38.1cm (11 ft. 10 in. x 12 in. x 20 in. x 15 in.)
  • 3-D (Blade Length): 152.4cm (60 in.)
  • Storage: 238.8 x 69.2 x 54cm (94 x 27 1/4 x 21 1/4 in.)

Country of Origin


Physical Description

  • Type: Three-Blade, Variable Pitch, Metal
  • Diameter: 360.7 cm (142 in.)
  • Chord: 30.5 cm (12 in.)
  • Engine Application: Unknown


PROPULSION-Propellers & Impellers

Inventory Number


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