The Junior is the outgrowth of the original Payne Knight Twister designed and built by Mr. Payne back in 1928. Even in those days the Twister's aerodynamic efficiency, streamlined appearance and safety, features were ahead of a number of lightplanes then on the market. The first ship was equipped with an inherently stable wing of high performance. The same wing is now on Knight Twister Junior. The reason for the selection of the biplane shape was to get small span and the greater strength-for-weight ratio inherent in the biplane truss. Also, the large stagger of the wings gives slower landing speed and shorter landing run.
The recently tested Knight Twister Junior has two and a half feet more span in both wings, giving a total of 73 square feet of wing area instead of the 55 square feet found on the original Twister. The resultant decrease in wing loading improved the rate of climb and permitted use of an engine of 75 hp or less. With a 75-hp engine -- without starter and generator -- and a gas tank of 12-gallon capacity, the gross weight was held down to 810 lbs., which included. the pilot and his parachute. This gave a wing loading of only 11 lbs. per square foot and a power loading of 10.8 lbs. per horsepower.
Test flights demonstrated that the ship had a cruising speed of 120 mph, a climb of 850 feet per minute and a landing speed of 50 mph. With cockpit enclosure and additional streamlining, the climb would be 900 feet per minute and the cruising speed 130 mph. In the air the plane can be pulled up well beyond the stall angle. It does not fall off on a wing but mushes forward at 50 mph, nosing down to regain flying speed as soon as the pressure on the stick is released. On landing it does not have any tendency to ground loop and the wheel brakes can be applied almost immediately after touch down without nosing over. And what about price? Under present conditions, at least $650 without engine, propeller and special fairings.
| Knight Twister Junior 3-view. Please note that the copy this was scanned from has distortion which is apparent along the right side of the image. |
NOTE: larger versions of this 3-view are available on the Knight Twister 3-Views page. It is listed as the KT Junior.