Bleriot XI

wpid8340-AU0E9517.jpgI was kindly invited up to Sonoma Skypark by Eric Presten to have a look at his Bleriot XI.  This is a replica that Eric and his family built in a short time span and that spends a lot of time in Wisconsin.  Therefore, it was quite unusual for it to be in California and in one piece.  It was about to be disassembled so I was keen to see it before it came apart again.

wpid8342-AU0E9519.jpgEric flies the aircraft occasionally but will happily tell you that it is not a particularly fun aircraft to fly.  It has wing warping rather than ailerons which are not the most effective – particularly at the speeds which this aircraft operates at.  However, it is a cool replica and one I would like to see fly at some point.  Eric kindly had the aircraft pulled out for me to get some shots.  Thanks for the great hospitality.

wpid8344-AU0E9529.jpgEric is an aviation photographer himself and has an outstanding collection of images of more aircraft than I knew existed.  He will happily sell you copies of his books so head to to see his work.


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