Ahrens Aircraft Corp AR-124
The AR 124 single-seater 13m (42ft 7.25in) span sailplane was designed and built by Ahrens Aircraft Corporation of Oxnard, California (the parent company of Ahrens Aircraft Inc), the main production and assembly plant, which was located at the former Ramey Air Force Base, Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
The AR 124 is a cantilever mid-wing monoplane with a T-tail, an unusual feature being the all-aluminium construction with a flush-riveted skin employed both for the constant-chord wings and the fuselage, the latter being an elliptical-section flushriveted monocoque; the wings have upper surface spoilers as well as ailerons but no tabs or flaps. A constant-chord nonswept tailplane and one-piece elevator are mounted on the swept-back fin and rudder; constant-chord wings and tailplanes for ease of production are also a feature of the AR 404 utility transport. The AR 124 has a fixed and unsprung Gerdes monowheel with a hydraulic disc drake, and a tailwheel. Seating is for one pilot under a molded one-piece canopy.
Design of this single-seat sailplane began in 1974, and the first flight of the prototype was that same year. Three prototypes of the AR 124 were built, the third, or AR 124V3, making its first flight in August 1975, and this was representative of the intended production version.
Flight testing and certification trials have been proceeding to meet a target of first customer deliveries beginning late in 1979, although this has been affected by progress with the firm's other major project, the four turboprop AR 404 30-passenger utility transport, and the AR 124 programme is currently dormant to give priority to the AR 404.
Span: 42ft 7.75 in
Length: 20ft 0in
Height: 5ft 2in
Wing area: 135.0sqft
Aspect ratio: 13.5
Empty weight: 350lb
Max weight: 640lb
Max speed: 180mph (in smooth air)
Max aero-tow speed: 103mph
Best glide ratio: 26:1 at 69mph