DescriptionThe Fletcher FU-24 is an agricultural aircraft made in New Zealand. One of the first designed for aerial topdressing, the Fletcher has also been used for other aerial applications as a utility aircraft, and for sky diving.
The Fletcher is a conventional low-wing monoplane with tricycle undercarriage, side-by-side seating in front of the wing and hopper and pronounced dihedral on the outer wing panels. A door aft of the wing's trailing edge on the port side allows access to a cargo compartment. The Fletcher's airframe is constructed entirely of aluminium, heavily treated to prevent corrosion.
In 1967 a PT6 turboprop version was built by James Aviation as ZK-CTZ, a 530 hp (400 kW) Garrett TPE 331-powered version followed in 1968 and a 665 hp (496 kW) Garrett-powered version in 1971, both for Robertson Air Service. Several others were converted aftermarket with these or Walter turbines, (including the first prototype, which flew until recently with a Walter). Two aircraft were also converted to Garrett TPE 331-10 engines by the Scone (NSW Australia) operator Airpasture. These aircraft have since flown many thousands of hours without incident.
In the mid 1970s, Pacific Aerospace decided the Fletcher design was reaching the limits of redevelopment and introduced the larger and stronger PAC Cresco. Despite the similar appearance this is a new aircraft, though sharing a few components.
For more history and details, click here.
- Crew: two Capacity: Six passengers or 320 US gal (1,200 L) liquid or 2,350 lb (1,070 kg) powder hopper
- 31 ft 10 in (9.70 m)
- 42 ft 0 in (12.80 m)
- 9 ft 4 in (2.84 m)
- Wing Area:
- 294.0 sq ft (27.31 sq m)
- Empty Weight:
- 2,620 lb (1,188 kg)
- 5,430 lb (2,463 kg) agricultural
- Fuel Capacity:
- 67 US Gallons, 254 L (normal)
- 1 × Textron Lycoming IO-720-A1A air-cooled flat-eight engine, 400 hp (300 kW)
- 165 mph (266 km/h, 143 kn)
- Cruise Speed:
- 130 mph (210 km/h, 110 kn) 75% power
- Stall Speed:
- 57 mph (92 km/h, 50 kn) flaps down
- 441 mi (710 km, 383 nmi)
- Rate of Climb:
- 805 ft/min (4.09 m/s)
- Service Ceiling:
- 16,000 ft (4,900 m)