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Salmson D.6 Cri-Cri
The Salmson Cricri ("Cricket") was a French light aircraft designed by Paul Deville. Salmson launched work on this new aircraft in 1935, intended primarily for the military for intermediate and advanced training missions.
It was a conventional, parasol-wing monoplane with fixed tailskid undercarriage and seating in tandem open cockpits for the pilot and passenger. The negative dihedral wing had the distinction of having a very small forward sweep. A very large tail had been installed. Built mainly in canvas wood but also with metal inserts, it was powered by a Salmson 9Adr engine of 60hp driving a three-blade metal and wood propeller. A relatively high, relatively wide gauge fixed landing gear had been installed on the aircraft. The pilot and his passenger took place in two tandem open cockpits, separated from each other.
Officially designated D.6 by the manufacturer, it received the name of Cricri. Its first flight took place on April 14, 1936. Immediately thirty planes were acquired by the Air Force.
Shortly after receipt of the first of these aircraft, the Navy ordered two fairly similar aircraft for the intermediate training of combat aircraft pilots. These two aircraft received the official designation of D.6-3.
In September 1936, the Air Ministry placed an order for a hundred aircraft under the so-called Popular Aviation program which aimed to promote tourist aviation for the greatest number. These planes were therefore sent to schools and flying clubs across the country.
When World War II broke out in September 1939, production of the Cricri was still underway and several copies were urgently ordered for Air Force schools. But several dozen of them were camouflaged and received tactical codes from combat aircraft. Although generally disarmed, some machines carried in the rear position a mobile Darne 7.5mm machine gun for its own defense. They were widely used for the observation of the battlefield, border surveillance in particular along the Maginot line, or even the direction of ground artillery fire. At least half of the French military D.6s were used for missions other than training.
The majority of Cricri were used during all the French part of the war, and when in 1940 the Franco-German armistice was signed several planes joined the ranks of the German aviation for various secondary missions like the towing of gliders or transport and light postal flights.
345 were built.
Following the war, CFA attempted to revive the design as the Cricri Major. This differed from its predecessor mainly in having a more powerful engine and an enclosed cabin.
D6 Cricri
Engine: 1 × Salmson 9 ADr, 45 kW (60 hp)
Wingspan: 9.66 m (31 ft 8 in)
Wing area: 16.0 m2 (172 ft2)
Length: 6.89 m (22 ft 7 in)
Height: 2.18 m (7 ft 2 in)
Empty weight: 287 kg (633 lb)
Gross weight: 575 kg (1,268 lb)
Maximum speed: 150 km/h (94 mph)
Range: 500 km (310 miles)
Service ceiling: 2,450 m (8,040 ft)
Crew: One pilot
Capacity: 1 passenger
329 built
D63 Cricri
dedicated flight trainer version
2 built

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