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1920s - 1930s: Beech Model 17 Staggerwing

The Beech model 17 Staggerwing flew for the first time in 1932 and was one of the fastest aircraft in the world at the time. This powerful aircraft proved to be a handful for many pilots, particularly on the ground, due to the engine torque, the tail-dragger undercarriage, and poor layout of control surfaces. Later versions of the aircraft corrected most of the shortcomings of the earlier models, and made it a popular aircraft in its day.


The last Staggerwing was produced in 1948 with 780 aircraft having been built up to that time.

StaggerwingAlways a crowd pleaser, the classic elegance of the Staggerwing epitomizes the best of 1930's aviation style, and the aircraft is often referred to as the executive jet of the '30s. Seating five, this example has a top speed of 180 miles per hour.

The type also saw service with the US Army Air Force and the Royal Navy during World War Two, and the single Staggerwing in New Zealand at the start of World War Two was pressed into service with the RNZAF until 1945.


The Staggerwing displays at a New Zealand airshow.


Static walk-around views of a Staggerwing.


Several vintage aircraft at Omaka Aerodrome, including the Beech Staggerwings.


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