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Model of the first prototype of PZL P.11. Resin kit with photoetched parts, vacu windscreen and decals.
PZL P.11/I fighter prototype
In January 1931 Państwowe Zakłady Lotnicze (PZL - The State Aviation Works) decided to develop the line of all-metal gull-winged fighters designed by Zygmunt Puławski. The project, adapted for the 700 hp engine, was designated P.11. Puławski has not finished his work – he died in airplane crash. The project was continued by Wsiewołod Jakimiuk.
The first prototype, developed from the P.6 and P.7 fighters, was designated P.11/I. While the intended engine for P.11 was British Bristol Mercury, P.11/I has been equipped with French license-built version of older Jupiter VII 9Asb - the new Mercury was still suffering from teething-problems.
Such design showed lesser performance than expected, but still - with French engine - was attractive offer for countries which preferred French-originated technologies. The factory has decided to organize a European tour for the airplane intended for granting the production orders. P.11/I has visited Romania and Turkey, taking part in contests and beating fighters designed in Czechoslovakia, France and USA. Plane was also tested by the Portugese. The result were orders for PZL fighters by Romania, and, later, also Turkey and Bulgaria.
text: Grzegorz Mazurowski