Maule Air

Модельный ряд:


In the beginning…
Belford D. Maule, or "B.D.", as everyone knew him, was born November 4, 1911 in Old Fort, Ohio to farming parents. Not caring much for farm life, he left at the age of 15 to live in Salladasburg, PA. with an uncle and aunt who owned a garage and tea room. There he demonstrated his mechanical ability by building a tractor, and by motorizing an ice cream freezer and an ice saw, among other thing

B.D. join
ed the Army when he was 18 and was assigned to the 19th Airship Company at Langley Field, Virginia. While working on dirigibles, he found time to design and build his first airplane, a single seat midwing monoplane powered by a Henderson 27 HP motorcycle engine, known as the M-1. Starting with the airplane on floats, and later on wheels at the Salladasburg farm, B.D. taught himself to fly. (Regulations weren't as strict in those days.)   

Following his stint in the Army, B.D. moved back to Pennsylvania and became a family man, marrying June Aderhold
in 1934. June and B.D. located in Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania and built their own home there in 1936. Note that Jersey Shore is not only June's birthplace but is also midway between Lock Haven (Piper Aircraft) and Williamsport (Lycoming Aircraft Engines). This was an area in keeping with B.D.'s interest in aviation. B.D. went to work for Lycoming, and in 1939 designed and built "the Hummer", a low cost mechanical starter for light aircraft. (Many airplanes did not have electrical systems back then.)

The War Years…
In 1940, the Maule family moved to Jackson, Michigan. Mechanical Products Company was formed to manufacture the Hummer starter (Piper and the Continental Engine Company had shown an interest). In 1941 the B.D. Maule Company was formed in Napoleon, Michigan to build a light aircraft tailwheel which B.D. had designed. The steerable, full-swiveling tailwheel, is still being manufactured by Maule, in an improved form. With the advent of World War II, the starter business waned, and tailwheels were in demand as well as subcontract work to support the war effort.

As a diversion during the latter part of the war, B.D. designed a man-powered glider with flapping wings, known as an ornithopter. He claims to be the first (and is probably the last) person to have successfully flown such a device.

The Post-War Years…
In 1946, B.D. and June purchased a farm near Napoleon, Michigan. With the help of their two oldest children, they converted it to an airport. In the process, they had the dubious honor of leveling a dog race track which had been operated by Al Capone. The airport flourished, being used for flight training during the initial post-war aviation boom.