Keystone Aircraft

Summary

Keystone Aircraft Corporation
IndustryAerospace
PredecessorHuff-Daland Aero Corporation
Defunct1929 (1929)
FateMerged into Curtiss-Wright in 1929
SuccessorCurtiss-Wright
Headquarters
Key people
James McDonnell

Keystone Aircraft Corporation was an early American airplane manufacturer.

History

Headquartered in Bristol, Pennsylvania, the company was formed as "Ogdensburg Aeroway Corp" in 1920 by Thomas Huff and Elliot Daland, but its name was quickly changed to "Huff-Daland Aero Corp", then to "Huff-Daland Aero Company". The company made a name for itself in agricultural aircraft, and then in the United States Army Air Corps' early bomber aircraft. From 1924, James McDonnell was the chief designer.

In 1926, Huff left the company, and it was soon purchased by Hayden, Stone & Co., who increased capital to $1 million (United States) and renamed it Keystone.[1] In 1928, it merged with Loening and was known as Keystone–Loening.[2] In 1929, it was taken over by Curtiss-Wright. Also in 1929, the Keystone–Loening plant on the East River in New York City was closed by Curtis-Wright and the operation was moved to the Bristol, Pennsylvania. Keystone plant. A small band of the top Loening management, design and shop workers (all New Yorkers) did not want to go to Bristol. They instead started their own aircraft company in a small rented shop in Baldwin, NY in Jan. 1930. The principal players were Leroy R. Grumman, Leon "Jake" Swirbul and William Schwendler. Grumman Aircraft went on to stellar heights with some of the best aircraft in US Navy history. Grumman also designed and built the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) that landed US astronauts on the moon.

In 1932 the Army Air Corps issued a Circular design proposal for an advanced new heavy bomber which Ford, Martin, Boeing, Fokker, Douglas and Keystone submitted designs. The Keystone entry was for an all metal low winged monoplane bomber with retractable landing gear. The bomber would be powered by two Curtiss V-1570 geared Conqueror engines. With a crew of 5 it was armed with up to 3 x .30 caliber machine guns and could carry 2,000 lbs (907 kg) of bombs on external racks. A mock-up of the aircraft was inspected by the Air Corps in April and was withdrawn by Keystone after it was determined it could not meet the requirements. The contract was ultimately won by Martin for their Model 139, known as the B-10 Bomber. This was to be the last design submitted to the military by Keystone.[3]

Keystone itself became a manufacturing division of Curtiss-Wright and ceased production in 1932.[4] The former Keystone plant was purchased by Fleetwings in 1934.[5]

Lieut. Comdr. Noel Davis and Lieut. Stanton H. Wooster were killed in their Keystone Pathfinder American Legion while conducting a test flight, just days before they were to attempt a trans-Atlantic flight for the Orteig Prize.

Aircraft

Model name First flight Number built Type
Huff-Daland TW-5 26 Single engine biplane trainer
Huff-Daland XB-1 1927 1 Prototype twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone PK 18 License built version of Naval Aircraft Factory PN
Keystone XLB-3 1 Prototype twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone LB-5 1927 36 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone LB-6 1927 18 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone B-3 36 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone B-4 30 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone B-5 30 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone B-6 44 Twin engine biplane bomber
Keystone K-47 Pathfinder 1927 2 Trimotor biplane airliner
Keystone K-55 Pronto 1927 Single engine biplane mail plane
Keystone–Loening K-85 Air Yacht 1928 4 Single engine biplane flying boat
Keystone NK 1928 20 Single engine biplane trainer
Keystone K-78 Patrician 1929 3 Trimotor monoplane airliner
Keystone–Loening K-84 Commuter 1929 Single engine biplane flying boat
Keystone XO-15 1930 1 Prototype single engine observation biplane
Keystone XOK 1931 1 Single engine biplane floatplane
Keystone Bomber Design (USAAC XB-908) 1932 0 Twin engine monoplane bomber
Keystone–Loening XS2L 1933 1 Single engine biplane flying boat

References

  1. ^ Geoff Jones. Delta Air Lines: 75 Years of Airline Excellence. p. 10.
  2. ^ "Keystone & Loening Companies Merge". Aero Digest. November 1928. p. 960. Retrieved 31 May 2021.
  3. ^ David D Gravermoen, B-10 - The Martin Bomber
  4. ^ "Subseries VIII: Keystone Aircraft Corporation". National Air and Space Museum. Archived from the original on 9 October 2007. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  5. ^ "Fleetwings Buys Keystone Plant". Aero Digest. October 1934. p. 68. Retrieved 18 May 2021.

External links

  • Aerofiles