Righter (US)

Righter engines were built by the Righter Manufacturing Company of Burbank, California. The firm was founded by Walter H. Righter (1905-1982), who had previously been an engineer for Kinner Airplane and Motor Corp, and later Vultee Aircraft. An extensive biographical remembrance of Righter's life and career (including many photographs from his collection) has been written and published on the internet by his daughter Frances Jean Righter Tucker (FJRT below) and can be found here. The first product of Righter Manufacturing was the design and construction of model aircraft engines under the brand-name "Dennymite" for Hollywood actor Reginald Denny's hobby-shop activites in about 1936. This activity developed into the design and manufacture of scaled-up model-aircraft-like ground-radio-controlled vehicles as military target drones for in-flight gunnery practice. The resulting U.S. Army and U.S. Navy contracts led to the formation of Radioplane Corp. (for which Walter Righter worked part-time) to build the drone aircraft with Righter Manufacturing building the engines. These drones (AT3/71; Fahey USAAF; MAN5/46) were built by Frankfort Sailplane Company of Joliet, Illinois, Globe Manufacturing of Dallas, Texas, and Radioplane Corporation of Ventura, California (which later became Northrop Corporation - Ventura). Righter Manufacturing Company was purchased by Radioplane in May 1945. Brief specifications for the Military versions of the Righter Engines can be found in the AMC reference, which can be reached on the Aircraft Engine Historical Society Website under their "Reference" heading.

N/A (2-Stroke) -- {N/A / N/A / N/A} / {N/A / N/A / N/A}

4cyl; RP-1 Twin; 2.5hp@N/Arpm; 1937-1941; Wt = N/A; TC = none.
Single-ignition engine to establish proof-of-concept for small, low-powered, inexpensive flying target drones.
FJRT (for engine and application, including photos).
Applications: (US) Denny-Righter target-drone proof-of-concept vehicle.

O-17 (2-Stroke) -- {2.25 / 2.125 / 16.9} / {57.2 / 54.0 / 277}

2cyl; Model 2-GS-17, Military O-15-1 & -3; 6 to 8.25hp@4000rpm; 1940-1945; Wt = 28#; TC = none.
Single-ignition engine with both single-propeller drives and spur-gear counter-rotating propeller drives.
Also built by Herkimer Tool and Model Works and McCulloch Manufacturing.
AMC; AT3/71; Fahey USAAF; J45-46; MAN5/46.
Applications: (US) Frankfort OQ-2A, -2B, & -3 Target Drones; Radioplane A-2, A-2A (OQ-2A), OQ-2B & -3 Target Drones; Volmer Jensen VJ-16 Penguin taxi-trainer (non-flying).

O-46 (2-Stroke) -- {3.25 / 2.75 / 45.6} / {82.6 / 69.9 / 748}

2cyl; 2-S-45, Military O-45-1 & -3; 20hp@3800rpm to 35@4250; 1940-1945; Wt = 34#; TC = none.
Single-ignition engine.
Also built by Kiekhaefer and Menasco engine companies.
AMC; AT3/71; Fahey USAAF; FJRT (for applications); J45-46; MAN5/46.
Applications: (US) Bee Aviation Associates (Beecraft) Wee Bee ultralight (prone pilot); Frankfort OQ-3, OQ-14 Target Drones; Globe Target Drones; Pentecost Model 102 Hoppi-Copter [NX31222]; Radioplane OQ-3, OQ-14 Target Drones.

N/A (2-Stroke) -- {N/A / N/A / N/A} / {N/A / N/A / N/A}

4cyl; N/A; 16hp@N/Arpm; 1945-1947; Wt = N/A; TC = none.
Single-ignition engine as auxiliary powerplant for a sailplane.
aerofiles.com; J47; MAN5/46.
Applications: (US) Nelson Bumblebee powered sailplane [NX1955].


Updated 6/11/08