Forgotton Tech: Custer Channelwing

From time to time I like to read about the dawn of industries and the evolution of design from the perspective of innovation.  The aviation industry for example was abuzz with lots of entrepreneurs discovering various alternatives to the existing ideas of flying in the 1930s and 1940s.   One such inventor was James Custer.  His innovation was simply thinking on a different level; namely, it’s not the speed of the wing through the air, but the speed of the air over the wing, that generates lift.

As with most inventors though, getting your inventions to the mainstream is a mammoth task and like so many, the Custer Channelwing only made it to a prototype.  What’s more, is that his experiments and prototype was turned down, because it was too advanced, and essentially too good to be true.

The Custer Channelwing

James Custer and the Custer Channelwing

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