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Rotec R2800 Powered Nieuport 11
Owner: Graham Orphan
Status: First Flight 8th December 2011

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Introduction to the Nieuport 11 Project by Graham Orphan.


From the famous stable of Nieuports which made their name during WW1. The Nieuport 11 was affectionately referred to as the Bébé (baby) and was designed by Gustave Delage as single seat fighter. The aircraft played its part in ending the dominance of the German Fokker fighters of the time (including the Fokker DR1).


Data from "The Worlds Greatest Aircraft"

Graham's Nieuport will be powered by Rotec's R2800 and all at Rotec are keen to see this fine aircraft completed; so much so that there is a hope that it will be on display in New Zealand at Omaka 2011.

On a final note, Rotec would like to thank Graham for all his help over the past year in promoting our engines through his own personal efforts, along with his work as a publisher of the Classic Wings magazine.

The pressure is now on Graham to supply pics and reports for each milestone reached as he progress towards completion.

Latest Updates are at the top.

Do you want to start at the beginning of this project? In which case Click to Go Down to the start...

as usual click to on the small bordered thumb-nails to enlarge ...

23rd March 2012: Graham sends another great photo of the Bébé in flight.

Photo courtesy of Gavin Conroy ©
Click on thumbnail to enlarge

8th December 2011: 1st Flight!

Graham writes (Feb 2012):

Hi Jim,

< Click on thumbnail to enlarge

Just a short note by way of a 'progress report' on the Nieuport. I have flown it a few hours now and am enjoying it immensely. 

It's a bit squirrelly on take off and landing as you'd expect, but it is otherwise pretty well mannered. The engine is running flawlessly and is a delight to operate. It starts easily, runs incredibly smoothly, displays a very broad temperature tolerance, and just does everything anyone could want of an engine like this.

The power supply is adequate for the little Nieuport although I suspect the propeller could be more efficient and I am talking to prop-maker Brent Thompson about possible alternative profiles with a much more WW-I look and potentially better performance.

Everyone comments very favourably on the sound the engine makes, which is not out of keeping with an aircraft of the time albeit without the rotary blipping etc. The engine also gets constant admiration for build quality.

I carried out a flight a few days ago, with photographer Gavin Conroy in the front of my Stearman and I flew the N.11 alongside to his direction. I'll attach a sample photo. We'll have a good selection of these feature in the looming article on the Nieuport in one of the next couple of Classic Wings magazines.

Thanks to everyone at Rotec for an outstanding piece of engineering.

Cheers for now,

August 2010 to September 2011: Great Pics. Great progress (99% complete)

Graham who publishes the Classic Wings Magazine writes:

From: Graham Orphan
Sent: Saturday, 3 September 2011 9:41 AM
To: Rotec
Cc: Rotec Factory
Subject: Fwd: Neuport 11 pix (later - up to Sept 2nd) web size

Hi Jim & Paul,

Thought you might like some overview pics of the full-scale Russian Nieuport 11. It is not finished yet but should fly within a couple of weeks. As mentioned by phone, we had a great engine run yesterday, but then it would not start again. John Evans (who you spoke with Jim) is working through the options at present (note: issue has been resolved by Rotec Tech Support).

Needless to say, we'll be running a feature on this aircraft when it is flying, which will hopefully appear before the year is out. The current edition is STILL at the printers - was due out several days ago. It features the story of Russ Turner's R3600 powered Camel.

...  The Russian rugby team is being hosted by Blenheim during the world cup taking place in NZ this month, hence all the Russian theming.

Cheers, Graham

The following set are full sized pictures as supplied by Graham:

Completed Nieuport Bebe ready for flight testing.

Up close on the "Reaper"- part of the Russian markings

Top View: Graham Orphan's Nieuport Bebe showing off the Russian theme - nearing completion

Side View: Graham Orphan's Nieuport Bebe showing off the Russian theme - nearing completion

Showing off the Rotec R2800 Radial

Almost Done (view back 3/4)

Wings completed and attached ready for covering

August 2010: Graham takes delivery of his Rotec R2800 for his Nieuport 11


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