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De Havilland DH 104 Dove / Devon



In 1944 R E Bishop and his team envisaged the DH104 as a succes-sor to the Dtagon, Express and Rapide, and incorporated new construction techniques such as Redux bonding in the airframe and a tricycle undercarriage. A new low-wing monoplane which, with the exception of fabric-covered elevators and rudder, was of all-metal construction, and powered by two de Havilland Gipsy Queen engines, with constant-speed, fully-feathering, and reversible-pitch propellers. Standard accommodation as a transport was for 8 to 11 passengers.

The prototype flew on 25 September1945, initially with an angular dorsal fin before it was replaced by a new dorsal fin and, much later of a redesigned elevator, and of a domed roof to give a little more headroom on the flight deck. Production aircraft were generally similar to the original prototype.

The Dove production variants resulted from differing Gipsy Queen powerplants, these including the 246kW Gipsy Queens 71 and 70-3 powering the prototype and the Dove 1/2 respectively; 254kW Gipsy Queen 70-4 in the Dove 1B/2B; 283kW Gipsy Queen 70-2 in the Dove 5/6, and 298kW Gipsy Queen 70-3 in the Dove 7/8.

The Dove 1B powered by 305 hp DH Gipsy Queen 70 was the most prolific model, followed by 128 Dove 4/5, built as the Devon/Sea Devon. The Mk.4 was a military variant of the Dove, with two crew and 8 passengers.


Up to 30 were in Service with the RNZAF during 1946-80.


In the course of its long life, the type underwent significant improvements with the final production version, the Dove 7/8 having an enlarged cockpit, Heron-style canopy and 400HP Gipsy Queen Mk 3 engines.



Doves in the United States were marketed as the Custom 800.

DH 104 production ran to 542 aircraft before production ended in 1968, mak-ing it Britain’s best selling commercial airliner.
Just over 100 were supplied under the name Devon to many air forces, including the RAF, and a small number went to the Royal Navy with the name Sea Devon.



A number of Dove conversions carried out subsequently by Riley Aircraft in the USA as the Riley Turbo Executive 400 introduced 298kW Avco Lycoming IO-720-A1A flat-eight piston engines.


Riley Turbo-Exec 400 N880JG (04491)


Carstedt went even further with the Carstedt CJ-600A Jet Liner with a fuselage stretch by 7 ft 5 in (2.21 m) to seat up to 18 passengers and two 575 SHP / 451kW Garrett TPE-331 turboprops. The type was supplied primarily to Apache Airlines.
Another version of the Dove was produced by Texas Airplane Manufacturing Co. that employed 705-eshp turboprops and a stretched fuselage.




DH104 Mk.1
Engines 2 x D.H. Gipsy Queen 70-2, 330 hp
Length 39 ft 2 in (11.96 m.)
Wing span 57 ft. (17.37 m.)
Weight empty 6,325 lb. (2,870 kg).
Max wt: 8800 lb (3992kg).
Seats 2 crew and up to 11 passengers
Maximum speed: 230 mph (370 kph)
Cruise speed 200 mph (320 kph)
Ceiling 21,700 ft. (6,600 m) full loaded

Maximum range: 880 miles (1415 km)

DH104 Mk.1B

Engines: 2 x DH Gipsy Queen 70-3, 345 hp.

Dove 7
Engine: 2 x Havilland Gipsy Queen 70-3 inline, 298kW, 400 hp
Max take-off weight: 4060 kg / 8951 lb
Empty weight: 2985 kg / 6581 lb
Wingspan: 17.37 m / 56 ft 12 in
Length: 11.99 m / 39 ft 4 in
Height: 4.06 m / 13 ft 4 in
Wing area: 31.12 sq.m / 334.97 sq ft
Max. speed: 378 km/h / 235 mph
Cruise speed: 261 km/h / 162 mph
Service Ceiling: 6615 m / 21700 ft
Range: 1891 km / 1175 miles
Crew: 2
Payload: 11 pax

Dove 8

Engines: 2 x Gipsy Queen Mk 3, 400 hp.

Riley Dove

Engines: 2 x Lycoming IO-720, 400 hp.

Carstedt CJ-600A

Engines: two x Garrett TPE-33 1 turboprops, 575 shp.



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