DescriptionThe Aero Commander 100 was a US light aircraft produced in the 1960s. It was a high-wing monoplane of conventional design, equipped with fixed tricycle undercarriagE.
various models were known as the Darter Commander and Lark Commander.
The aircraft was originally designed by Volaircraft, first flying in 1960. The firm marketed the original three-seat version as the Volaire 1035 and a four-seat version with a more powerful engine as the Volaire 1050 before North American Rockwell purchased all rights to the design on July 12, 1965, for production by its Aero Commander division. Production of the Darter Commander version continued until 1969 and of the revised Lark Commander until 1971 (by which time, Rockwell had dropped the Aero Commander brand name).
A Volaire 1050 was exhibited at the 1966 Hanover Air Show and later sold to Finland. Other examples of the type were exported to Australia and Canada.
Finding the light aircraft market too competitive for its liking, Rockwell ceased production of the Lark Commander in 1971 and sold the rights to all versions of the aircraft to Phoenix Aircraft of Euclid, Ohio, but this company never actually put it into production.
Model 10 – prototypes
Volaire 1035 – three-seat production version powered by Lycoming O-290
Volaire 1050 – four-seat production version powered by Lycoming O-320
Aero Commander 100 – alias Volaire 1050
Aero Commander 100A – alias Volaire 1035
Darter Commander – 100 with revised windows and other minor modifications
Lark Commander 180 – revised aerodynamics, with swept fin and rudder and 180 hp (130 kW) Lycoming
O-360-A2F engine. Production from 1968.
Specifications below are for the Darter Commander.
- Crew: 1 Capacity: 3 passengers
- 22 ft 6 in (6.86 m)
- 35 ft 0 in (10.67 m)
- 9 ft 4 in (2.84 m)
- Wing Area:
- 181 sq ft (16.8 sq m)
- Empty Weight:
- 1,280 lb (581 kg)
- 2,250 lb (1,021 kg)
- Fuel Capacity:
- 44 US Gallons (166.5 L)
- 1 × Lycoming O-320-A air-cooled flat-four, 150 hp (110 kW)
- 170 mph (270 km/h, 150 kn), Maximum speed: 133 mph (214 km/h, 116 kn)
- Cruise Speed:
- 128 mph (206 km/h, 111 kn) at 7,500 ft (2,285 m) (75% power)
- Stall Speed:
- 55 mph (89 km/h, 48 kn) flaps down
- 510 mi (820 km, 440 nmi)
- Rate of Climb:
- 785 ft/min (3.99 m/s)
- Service Ceiling:
- 13,000 ft (4,000 m)