An Authentic and Airworthy Reproduction by the Wright Experience. The Wright Experience has meticulously, and with absolute fidelity, recreated the Model EX "Vin Fiz" as an airworthy, flyable reproduction. Its pedigree is flawless.
Mockup 35-HP Wright Vertical 4
Reproduction Wright 1911 Bent-End
Reproduction 1911 Wright Model EX Specifications:
Airworthy Airframe Seats: (1) Pilot Seat
Wing Span: 32'
Empty Weight: 690 Lbs.
Propellers: Reproduction Wright 1911 Bent-End
Engine: Mockup 35-HP Wright Vertical 4
Finish per Original Wright Factory Specifications:
Polished Aluminum Powder on all Exposed Spruce
Fabric: Rubberized Cotton, Decorated with Vin Fiz Markings
All Metal Fittings, Fuel Tank Nickel-Plated
Polished Brass Radiator
Seat Upholstered in Grey Corduroy
Aircraft Provenance :
One hundred years ago, a very small biplane changed our Nation. In the fall of 1911, one of the only two Wright Model EX airplanes ever built began a flight from Long Island, NY and finally ended four months later at Long Beach, CA to a cheering crowd of 10,000 people. Flown by Cal Rodgers, the airplane, dubbed the Vin Fiz (popular grape drink mfg that sponsored of the effort), became the first airplane ever to cross the United States.
The second Model EX was flown in 1911 and 1912 by two pilots from the Wright Exhibition Team, Philip Parmelee and Clifford Turpin. They crisscrossed the country — flying state fairs, offering rides on Venice Beach, even being deputized and chasing bandits from the sky, and appearing in an early Hollywood movie. They were pioneers of the air show as we know it today.
The Wright Experience has meticulously, and with absolute fidelity, recreated the Model EX as an airworthy, flyable reproduction. Its pedigree is flawless:
The EX has been recreated as the Vin Fiz as it appeared when Cal Rodgers left New York for his cross-country flight, and was made from direct measurement of the original aircraft.
The Vin Fiz markings and other decorations have been precisely reproduced, using a spectrum analysis of the original fabric and pigments.
The finishes, fabric, airframe, and fittings have been reproduced as accurately as possible following thousands of hours of primary source research and the creation of fully detailed, accurate plans.
Exhibition and Education:
This aircraft is ideal for not only preserving the rich heritage of American and aviation history, but for inspiring future generations. The STEM educational programming of the Wright Experience and Discovery of Flight Foundation has as its basis the interactive use of the aircraft in the museum setting to enhance both formal and informal STEM learning by visitors and students. The reproduction Wright machines hold a unique advantage as teaching tools:
All the fundamental principles of aircraft design are fully realized and accessible. Thanks to its open framework, the principles of three-axis control, wing warping, and power and propulsion can all be easily seen and demonstrated.
The aircraft was a commercial design—especially created for exhibition flying.
The Model EX was developed after the Model B as a smaller, single seat exhibition aircraft, yet it had the same powerplant and propulsion system, making an excellent comparison/contrast for STEM instruction.
It was an airplane with a corporate sponsor—a forerunner of a practice common today.
These applications are what make the aircraft an ideal STEM tool: it clearly shows the practical application of mathematics to solve practical, commercial scientific and engineering problems. Orville and Wilbur Wright are perfect STEM teachers. They did it all with high school math.
For historic interpretation for exhibit purposes, Vin Fiz has rich and abundant materials to draw on, and inspiring stories to tell. It represents not only the foundation of the history of commercial cross-country flight, but also its emergence as a force shaping history. Through Cal Rodgers, we see the shrinking of the continent and the origin of the convenient modern air travel now taken for granted. Through Parmelee and Turpin, the spirit of adventure that has propelled the advance of aviation for over a century.
The Wright Experience - Wright Brothers Reproductions are on display at the following museums:
Wright Brothers National Memorial, Kittyhawk, North Carolina
Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, Michigan
The Museum Of Flight, Seattle, Washington
United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum - Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Chantilly, Virginia