The unique Tatra T.101 aircraft was a masterpiece. However, the only prototype mysteriously disappeared during World War II

AUTO-MOTO September 12, 2020 | 11:04 - Lukáš Bauer

Tatra is known mainly for the production of heavy trucks, but few people know that eighty years ago it created the Tatra T.101 aircraft. This very advanced aircraft even broke one world record. Enthusiasts therefore decided to build an exact copy of the Tatra plane, which was completed in 2008.
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The Tatra aircraft broke several records / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

Kopřivnice truck manufacturer has built a good reputation in the world during its existence thanks to the unique technologies, reliability and durability of its vehicles. During its long history, Tatra has also produced train cars in Studénka. But few people know that the Tatra T.101 aircraft was also created in the car, which broke several world records.

Tatra began production of aircraft in 1935, when it first built machines under license Avro 626 Avian and Bücker Bü 131 Jungman. Two years later, the company began to develop its own machine, at the end of which an aircraft with the designation Tatra T.001 was created. The designers later used this aircraft to build the legendary Tatras T.101, which had a larger area of ​​wings and tail surfaces.

The Tatra T.101 achieved several records, including a world altitude record in the category of two-seater aircraft with an engine capacity of up to four liters. As part of this world record, the pilots climbed the machine to a height of 7113 m.

He disappeared during the war

The original Tatra T.100 aircraft has not been preserved, because it disappeared during the Second World War, and therefore the Sklenář brothers decided to build an exact replica of it. The only thing that has survived were the plans of the aircraft and the Tatra HM-504 and Tatra T100 engines, which the Sklenář brothers received with the support of the Tatra car manufacturer from the National Technical Museum. They used a total of three engines to build the world’s only functional Tatra aircraft engine.

The engine is therefore the only original work from 1938, everything else had to be rebuilt by the brothers. According to them, one of the most difficult elements was the construction of a complex Tatra wing and also a wooden propeller.

The only replica

Amateur designers also had to learn a number of original technologies that had been forgotten over time, and find people who could use them to design parts of the aircraft. The only functional Tatra T.100 aircraft in the form of a replica was completed in 2008. Also read: (It will withstand even the most difficult conditions. Dozens of heavy Tatra fire trucks will go abroad ).–nil1jNscNU3eIPQg2ftjIZ1_nhk6yaG8JJXE17STG–H-ZQ