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Lobert Ganagobie / Mousebird


Of all wood construction the first Gangobie was designed and built by two brothers, William and James Lobet, in 1953. The result of intensive wind tunnel testing, the prototype got airborne behind a l6hp Clerget engine. Since built in small numbers in North America, and achieved kitset production status as a peanut scale 13” wing span balsa model.  

Grounded after 30 hours of flight time by the failure of the nearly 50 year old engine, the Ganagobie concept was given a new lease of life by a Canadian engineer, Mr George Jacquemin. Mr Jacquemin, an aerospace engineer with Lockheed in California, suggested the modification of the design to accommodate the large numbers of war surplus target drone engines available in the mid fifties. The fuselage was given a boost in size to fit a larger framed pilot and a second prototype begun in Toronto, Canada, by an Experimental Aircraft Chapter. Completed by a Mr Pierre Descamps, the American Ganagobie was engined by a 1934 French-built Poinsard 35hp flat four. A subsequent flight report by De Havilland Canada’s chief test pilot gave the design a boost and some ten Ganagobie 03 projects were begun, largely in the United States and Canada. The original Canadian built Ganagobie was later re-engined with a Volkswagen 1200cc engine, standard fare for a number of homebuilts, and led to the latest in the family, the Lobet Ganagobie 05. The one and only Ganagobie 05, begun in Australia in 1974 after James Lobet migrated there, was shipped to New Zealand in 1982.

Engine: Citroën AMI8.         
Cruise: 169 kph (100 mph)
Stall: 75 kph (47 mph)        
ROC: 5m/sec (1,000 fpm).

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