Aircraft and wooden propeller were inseparable in the past. Nowadays it is not so obvious, due to the fact that the contemporary propeller is not wooden any more. A propeller is a precious piece of memorabilia, often like a heirloom and sometimes the only part of aircraft that survived. So important because it is stamped by history (bullet holes, notches, scratches or signs of repairs). Old wooden propellers are simply wooden sculptures. Each and everyone is different because they were handmade. Unpainted one reveal beautiful grains of different kinds of wood, all glued together to form the final shape. In pre-war Poland the words propeller and “Szomański” became almost synonym. The reason was simple, most of propellers were made by single manufacturer. Unfortunately in most cases “producer: Szomański” is the only information about propeller we can find in history book. Our goal is to find propellers (mostly Polish but also others) which survived in museums and in private hands, photographs and pictures of propellers and planes with them fitted. We aim going to find documents describing the propeller production and technical requirements the propellers have to fulfil. We are interested in everything concerning propellers. We do hope, that those of you keen on this matter, will be able to find something interesting, and those whose propeller knowledge is small will be able to extend it. We also like your help in our research.

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CZL

Axial

Anker

Dowty Rotol

HAMILTON STANDARD

Heiduk

ETA

Heine

Garuda

Letov

Imperial Propeller

Marshall - Fahlin

LWD

Merville

Mohns

Plage Laśkiewicz

Ratier

Rotol

Samolot

Schwarz

Sensenich

Szomański

WSK

Important information:

If you are an owner of old wooden propeller please do not restore it. Do not clean it with sandpaper, petrol, meths. If you restore your vintage prop you are very likely to reduce its value, both in terms of money and also its value as a historical item.
If your propeller really needs to be repaired (fabric is hanging off or there are splits in the wood) find an expert who can carefully conserve the prop.

IF you want to sell your propeller:

If you are an owner of a propeller and you want to sell it – first of all do not rush. Your propeller can be of  much more – or less –  worth comparing to what you expect. Not only in cash but also in terms of historic relation with the place it survived.  Consult this step with anyone you trust.

Beware of traffickers who’s only goal is making the money on quick reselling. It will make impossible to trace the propeller history for the next buyer.

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Breguet 14, CZL Propeller

Breguet 14, CZL Propeller

Nice group picture with Breguet 14 aircraft fitted with CZL propeller. It looks like one of the early ones as except typically used ash also some darker wood was selected. Picture taken in Bydgoszcz or in Dęblin (in this case it  would be 1928 or after). Picture...

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