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Stits SA-4A Executive / Stits-Besler Executive
SA4A Stits Besler Executive                              Courtesy Don Stits
The 4th design of Ray Stits, the Stits-Besler Executive project was initiated when William Besler of Besler Corp. contracted Ray Stits to design a three-place homebuilt aircraft with folding wings. Besler was an early aviation experimenter, who had mounted a steam engine of his own design on a Travel Air 2000 in 1933.
Ray Stits designed the three place Stits SA-4A Executive, developed from the Stits Playboy. Only one was built, costing $6000 in 1955.
The wings on the Executive fold aft and upward. Fuel tanks are embedded in the non-folding wing roots. The fuselage is welded steel tube with fabric covering. The ailerons are mounted in the center of the wing rather than the tips.
The sole Executive, (registration no. N36K), has been used as a test bed for Besler-designed engines; a 150 hp (112 kW) steam engine and a two cycle, four cylinder Vee rated at 100 hp (75 kW).
Stits-Besler Executive
Engine: 1 × Lycoming O-320, 150 hp (110 kW)
Wingspan: 25 ft 6 in (7.77 m)
Wing area: 120 sq ft (11 sq.m)
Length: 18 ft 6 in (5.64 m)
Width: 7 ft 5 in (2.26 m) with wings folded
Height: 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)
Empty weight: 800 lb (363 kg)
Gross weight: 1,450 lb (658 kg)
Fuel capacity: 24
Maximum speed: 143 kn; 266 km/h (165 mph)
Cruise speed: 130 kn; 241 km/h (150 mph)
Stall speed: 43 kn; 80 km/h (50 mph)
Rate of climb: 2,500 ft/min (13 m/s)
Range: 350 mi

Seats: 2-3


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