Jump directly to the page contents

Willy Pelzner built this biplane modelled on Otto Lilienthal’s gliders in 1921.

Pelzner constructed the framework of his gliders out of wood and covered the wings with oiled paper. Tensators stabilize the construction. The pilot was forced to adjust the arrangement before every take-off. Willi Pelzner participated in the flying competitions in 1921 and 1922 on the Wasserkuppe in the Rhön mountains in central Germany. In 1921 he won the first prize in the Rhön gliding competition with a total flight time of 38 minutes. He completed so many flights successfully, making him and his glider famous, that a slope on the Wasserkuppe was named after him.

Technical specifications:

  • Replica: Klaus Heyn, ca. 1960
  • Wing span: 5.4 m
  • Wing area: 14 m2
  • Mass: 6 kg
  • Gliding ratio: 6
  • Dimensions, packed: 2.7 m x 1.40 m x 0.50 m