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da Silva I
In 1909, Abeillard Gomes da Silva, was in Beira in the then Portuguese colony of Mozambique. Working there, at customs, was Abeillard Gomes da Silva, who that year had the opportunity to visit Europe during a holiday. At his own expense, he set off for France with an interest in heavier-than-air flight.
Upon arriving in France, he promptly spent 23,000 francs to build an airplane of his own invention: the Gomes da Silva I. A biplane configuration with its engine – a 25 to 28 hp Anzani – placed behind the pilot, it had a three-lever control system: a central lever for the rear directional rudders, and the other two for the altitude rudders, placed on either side of the pilot and which could either function together or separately. Enrolled in the Juvisy Aviation Fortnight (Grande Quinzaine d’Aviation), organised by the Société d’Encouragement à l’Aviation, it seems that Gomes da Silva was eventually disqualified due to a “21-day delay in the delivery of the engine”. The craft had been tested at the Issy-les-Moulineaux airfield and was not able to take off.



Gomes da Silva I
Wingspan: 7 m
Length: 6.5 m
Weight: 250 kg
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