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Taylorcraft B/ BC-12 / BF / BL / L-2 / C / Plus D

taylor-bc-12
BC12-D

 

Developed from the Taylorcraft Model A, the side-by-side two-place, single-engine, Model B was constructed in large numbers during the late 1930s and early 1940s and was available for delivery from the factory as a land plane and a floatplane. Like many light aircraft of its day, the fuselage is constructed of welded steel tubing and covered with doped aircraft fabric. The wings are braced using steel-tube struts.

 

The Model B was mainly bought by private pilot owners. Large numbers were flown in the United States, and many were sold to owners in Canada and several overseas countries, including those in Europe.

 

The BF (ATC 699) of 1938 sold for $1,549 and had an optional fully-cowled 65hp Franklin 4AC giving a slight increase in performance. The BF-12-65 added an elevator trim tab.

 

The Model B production was restored post-WW2 as the BC-12. Almost 4500 were built before replaced by the Model 19.

 

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Taylorcraft BF-12-65

 

Many were still active in 2015.

 

The wing's airfoil, rather than being the flat bottom Clark "Y" or USA 35 everyone else was using, was a semi-symmetrical 23000 series known for low drag and less gentle stall characteristics. For a wing that long to be that fast, it had to have a low-drag airfoil.
 
The pre-war airplanes used 1025 steel tube or a combination of 1025 and 4130. Postwar airplanes are all 4130.
The wings use pressed-aluminium ribs over wooden spars. Most Taylorcrafts use Shinn brakes which are mechanical shoe types with the lining on the drums, not the shoes.
 

 

In 1939 and 1940, Taylorcraft built the BL-50 (with optional 65hp A-65), BC-65 and the BF-60. All three models were the same airframe with a Continental, Lycoming, or Franklin engine. The number in the model designation indicated the engine horsepower. The 1938 BL was ATC 700 and sold for $1,549-1,595.
 
 
The BC (ATC 696) sold for $1,495-1,565. Seating was side-by-side. A total of 2,401 of the B models were produced of which a large number went to Army and the USAAF as L-2, O-57, and TG-6 glider. One went to Great Britain for evaluation of production. 132 were built under license by Taylorcraft Aeroplanes Ltd in 1939-41 as C (with O-145) and Plus-D (90hp Cirrus Minor). The first military use of a personal lightplane was 18 civil models impressed into RAF as C/2.
 
 
A total of 4314 of the 1941 BL-12 Deluxe model with the 65hp Lycoming O-145 engine were sold, including export deliveries. The BLS-50 was powered with a 60hp 4AC-17 engine.
 
 
In England, from 1953 to 1968, Taylorcraft Ltd produced 798 B models as civil Auster Autocrat and military Auster VI, plus 1,150 other models, until the end of production in 1968.
 

Postwar versions were reintroduced in 1946 as BC-12-D Standard and Deluxe Traveller (ATC 696) with 65-85hp Continentals. Last production version, as F-22 by Taylorcraft-Ruckle of Lock Haven PA, had a list price of $34,110 in 1991.

 
As World War II broke out, all production of civilian airplanes ceased at the Taylorcraft Corporation. Taylorcraft submitted a tandem seat design for the U.S. Army Air Corps evaluation and the airplane was accepted and designated the L-2 liaison aircraft. Some 1800 were produced throughout the war.
 
taylor-l2a
L2A
 
The BC-12D retained the popular Continental A-65-8A engine. It had side-by-side seating and an enclosed engine cowling.
Taylorcraft production includes 100 prewar Model As, 1800 military L-2s, more than 2800 post-war BC-12Ds, and more than 120 F-19 Sportsmans.

 

Duane Cole’s Taylorcraft, a BF-50, was built in 1938, the same year Cole earned his Private Pilot license. In 1950, it was acquired by John Vasey, a well-known aerobatic pilot and air show performer. Vasey shortened (“clipped”) the wingspan from 36 feet to 28 feet, 10 inches, and strengthened the wings. That gave the airplane more speed and a faster roll rate. Vasey also moved the pilot’s seat and control seat to the center of the cabin, making the two-seat BF-50 into a single-seat airplane, and shifting the airplane’s center of gravity. Finally, he replaced the original Franklin 50-horsepower engine with an 85 hp fuel-injected engine. His modifications turned the docile BF-50 into a powerful and agile aerobatic performer.

 

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Taylorcraft BF, N21292

 

Duane Cole bought N21292 from Vasey in 1952. Thus began one of the longest running aerobatic “partnerships” in history. Duane Cole and his signature red and cream Taylorcraft entertained millions of air show spectators in 47 states and five foreign countries. Cole installed a new 150-horsepower engine on the plane, but otherwise left the basic structure and Vasey’s modifications unchanged. He had little use for radios or instrument flying, and flew all over the US using pilotage and dead reckoning skills.

 

In 1962 and 1964, Cole flew the Taylorcraft to win the US National Aerobatic Championship and was named in 1962 to the US aerobatic team to compete for the international title in Budapest, Hungary.

 

 
Tay-BC12-2
1946 model Taylorcraft BC-12-D
 
 
Variants:
 
BC / BC-50
1938 - Based on the Model A with a 50 hp Continental A-50-1 engine and modified wing construction, also known as the BC-50
Wingspan: 36'0"
Length: 22'0"
Useful load: 468 lb
Max speed: 97 mph
Cruise speed: 88 mph
Stall: 35 mph
Range: 275 mi

Seats: 2

 
BCS
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BC
 
BC-65
1939 - Model BC with a 65 hp Continental A-65-1 engine
Wingspan: 36'0"
Length: 22'0"
Useful load: 510
Max speed: 105 mph
Cruise speed: 95 mph
Stall: 38 mph
Range: 250 mi

Seats: 2

 
BCS-65
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BC-65.
 
BC-12-65 / L-2H
1941 - As BC-65 except for minor structural changes and added elevator trim tab and a Continental A-65-7 engine.
 
BCS-12-65
1941 - Seaplane variant of the BC-12-65
 
BC-12D Twosome
1945 - Postwar production version of the BC-12-65 with a Continental A-65-8 engine with alternate tail surface, alternate one piece window and other minor changes.
 
BCS-12D
1946 - Seaplane variant of the BC-12D
 
BC-12D1
1946 - As the BC-12-D with left hand door, parking brake and right-hand wing tank removed
 
BCS-12-D1
1946 - Seaplane variant of the BC-12D1
 
BC-12D-85 Sportsman
1948 - A BC-12D fitted with a 85 hp Continental C85-8F engine and increased power and gross weight.
 
BCS-12D-85
1948 - Seaplane variant of the BC-12D1.
 
BC-12D-4-85
1949 - A BC-12D-85 fitted with an extra rear side window and a Continental C85-12F engine.
 
BCS-12D-4-85
1949 - Seaplane variant of the BC-12D-4-85.
 
BC-12 Deluxe
1941
Engine: 65hp Continental A-65
Wingspan: 36'0"
Length: 22'0"
Useful load: 470 lb
Max speed: 105 mph
Cruise speed: 95 mph
Stall: 35 mph
Range: 375 mi
 
BF / L-2G
1938 - Franklin 4AC-150 engine
Wingspan: 36'0"
Length: 22'0"
Useful load: 512 lb
Max speed: 103 mph
Cruise speed: 93 mph
Stall: 38 mph
Range: 255 mi
Seats: 2
 
BFS
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BF.
 
BF-12 Deluxe
1941 (ATC 699)
Engine: 65hp Franklin 4AC
 
BF-50
Engine: 60hp Franklin 4AC-171.
 
BF-60
1939 - As BF with a 60 hp Franklin 4AC-171 engine.
 
BFS-60
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BF-60.
 
BF-65
1941 - A BF with a 65 hp Franklin 4AC-176-B2 engine, also known as the BF-12-65 (L-2K).
 
BFS-65
1941 - Seaplane variant of the BF-65
 
BL
1938 - with a 50 hp Lycoming O-145-A1 engine, also known as the BL-50
 
BL
1938
Engine: Lycoming O-145, 50hp or 65hp
Wingspan: 36'0"
Length: 22'0"
Useful load: 510 lb
Max speed: 102 mph
Cruise speed: 95 mph
Stall: 38 mph
Seats: 2
 
BL-12 Deluxe
1941
Engine: 65hp Lycoming O-145
 
BLS-50
Engine: 60hp 4AC-17

 

BLS
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BL.
 
BL-65 / L-2F
1939 - A BL with a 65 hp Lycoming O-145-B1 engine.
 
BLS-65
1939 - Seaplane variant of the BL-65
.
BL-12-65/ L-2J
1941 - A BL-65 with a Lycoming O-145-B1 engine and minor structural changes and added elevator trim.
 
BLS-12-65
1941 - Seaplane variant of the BL-12-65.

 

Specifications:
 
Engine: Continental C-90, 90 hp
Seats: 2
 
BCS-12-65
Engine: Continental A-65-1, 65 hp
Engine Limits: For all operations, 2300 rpm
Propeller Diameter: not over 79 in., not under 70 in.
Wing span: 36'
Length: 22'
Height: 6' 10"
Weight empty: 700 lbs.
Useful Load: 518 lbs.
Baggage: 30 lbs.
Fuel: 9 USGal.
Fuel:73 min. grade aviation gasoline

BC-12-65
Engine: Continental A-65-1, 65 hp
Engine Limits: For all operations, 2300 rpm
Propeller Diameter: not over 83 in., not under 70 in
Wing span: 36'
Length: 22'
Height: 6' 10"
Weight empty: 700 lbs.
Useful Load: 518 lbs.
Baggage: 30 lbs.
Level flight or climb limit: 105 mph (91 knots)
Glide or dive limit: 131 mph (114 knots)
Fuel: 9 USGal.

Fuel: 73 min. grade aviation gasoline

 

Taylorcraft / Cole BF-50
Engine: Lycoming O-320 A2A, 150 hp
Wing Span: 28 ft. 10 in. (originally 36 ft. 0 in.)
Length: 22 ft
Height: 6 ft. 7 in
Empty Weight: 846 lb
Gross Weight: 1178 lb
Seats: 1

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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