Aircraft History, Specification and Information
Robin DR400
Robin DR400-180R - HB-EUQ - Flying Ranch Triengen
1973 Robin DR400/180R - HB-EUQ (sn 786)
Flying Ranch Triengen
Photo taken Aug. 21, 2009 @ Triengen Airport - Switzerland (LSPN)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler

The Robin DR400 is a wooden sport monoplane, conceived by Pierre Robin and Jean Délémontez. The Robin DR400 first flew in 1972 and was still in production in 2008. It has a tricycle undercarriage, and can carry four people. The DR400 aircraft have the 'cranked wing' configuration, in which the dihedral angle of the outer wing is much greater than the inboard, a configuration which they share with Jodel aircraft. This model is considered easy to fly by many and quiet during flight due to its wooden frame.

Development

The Robin DR300 series were developments of the earlier DR.221 Dauphin and DR.250 Capitaine with a tricycle landing gear. The first variant was the DR340 Major, a tricycle landing gear version of the DR250 Capitaine which first flew on 27 February 1968, followed on 21 March 1968 by the DR315 Petit Prince, a tricycle landing gear version of the DR221 Dauphin. The DR315 was later replaced by the DR300. In 1972 an improved version, the DR400 was introduced with a forward-sliding canopy.

Design

The wing is a distinctive feature of the Robin DR400, and is what immediately separates this aircraft visually from other similar light aircraft. It is a derivative of the earlier Jodel designs, is light, stiff and strong, with the dihedral of the outer panels imparting substantial lateral stability in flight. Being fabric covered, it presents a smooth surface to aid airflow, unhindered by the typical overlapping panels or rivets found on metal aircraft. The secret to the DR400's relatively high performance lies in the pronounced washout in the outer panels. Since they have a lower angle of attack to the airflow than the centre section, they create less drag in cruise flight. This characteristic also imbues rather benign stall behavior and the DR400 consequently does not suffer from the need to install retro-fixes like leading edge stall strips.

Variants

  • DR.315 Petit Prince
    A development of the earlier DR221 with a tricycle landing gear and powered by a 115hp Lycoming O-235-C2A engine.
  • DR.330
    An experimental DR.315 fitted with a 130hp Continental O-240-A engine in 1970.
  • DR.340 Major
    A development of the earlier DR250 with a tricycle landing gear and powered by a 140hp Lycoming O-320-E2A engine.
  • DR.360 Chevalier
    DR.340 with a solid cabin roof and a 160hp Lycoming O-320-D2A engine.
  • DR.300-108 2+2
    Replacement for the DR.315 with improved landing gear and either two or four seats.
  • DR.300-120
    Four-seat DR.300 with a 120hp Lycoming O-235-L2A engine.
  • DR.300-140
    DR.300 with a 140hp Lycoming O-235-E2A engine.
  • DR.300-180
    DR.300 with a 180hp Lycoming O-360-A3A engine.
  • DR.300-180R
    Glider tug version of the DR.300-180.
  • DR.400-100 Cadet
    Two-seat version of the DR.400-108
  • DR.400-108 Dauphin 80 2+2
    DR.300-108 with forward-sliding canopy
  • DR.400-120 Petit Prince
    DR.300-120 with forward-sliding canopy
  • DR.400-120 Dauphin 2+2
    Petit Prince with extra cabin windows.
  • DR.400-125
    DR.400-120 with a 125hp Lycoming O-235-F engine
  • DR.400-140 Earl
    DR.300-140 with forward-sliding canopy
  • DR.400-140B Major 80
    DR.400-140 with a 160hp Lycoming O-320-D2A
  • DR.400-160 Chevalier
    Original designation for the DR.400-140B
  • DR.400-180 Regent
    DR.300-180 with forward-sliding canopy, later models have extra cabin windows.
  • DR.400-180 Regent III
    A Nouvelle Generation DR.400
  • DR.400-180R Remorqueur
    DR.400-180 glider tug with clear canopy
  • DR.400-180RP Remo 212
    DR.400-180R fitted with a 212hp Porsche PFM 3200 engine and 3-bladed propeller

Specifications (DR.400/180 Regent)

General characteristics
Capacity: 4
Length: 6.96 m (22 ft 10 in)
Wingspan: 8.72 m (28 ft 7¼ in)
Height: 2.23 m (7 ft 3¾ in)
Wing area: 14.20 m2 (152.85 ft2)
Empty weight: 600 kg (1323 lb)
Gross weight: 1100 kg (2425 lb)
Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming O-360-A flat-four piston engine, 134 kW (180 hp)

Performance
Maximum speed: 278 km/h (173 mph)
Range: 1450 km (900 miles)
Service ceiling: 4715 m (15,470 ft)

Last updated November 28, 2011
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Robin DR400".
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