Just after WWII the Zlin Trener, was produced in Moravan Otrokovice. Czech pilots won the first FAI world aerobatics championship in 1960 in Treners, which became known as the best aerobatic airplane in the world for a decade. Many Treners are still flying after more than thirty years. The Zlin Z-50 aerobatic aircraft was to become the accepted aerobatic world leader from 1976 through the end of the 1980�s. The Zlin Z-50 has seen four world championship titles since beginning production.
History of one of the most famous Zlin Aerobatics Aircraft, The Zlin Z-50 Plane:
In autumn 1973 was decided in Moravan Otrokovice to develop a new single aerobatic plane. Chief-designer Jan Mikula prepared with his colleagues project with type symbol Zlin Z-50 (many pilots now use only “fifty”). During constructional works was used computer optimization for better aerodynamic characteristic. The main problem of construction was to find out the best engine for this aerobatic aircraft. Because there were no engines accordant with the needs of aerobatic aircraft there in Czechoslovakia, designers had to find an engine outside the country. They found American Avco Lycoming AIO-540 D4B5 with power of 191 kW (260 PS) and three-blade propeller Hartzell.
The second requirement for this Aerobatics Plane was maximal unloading of construction. That’s why designers have used continuous wing that was screwed to the airframe. This type of wing with its weight reduction is better for its lifetime.
Landing gear is continuous from one piece of titan stripe. Tiny layer of metal covers airframe, some parts of tail and elevator are covered with cloth. The main tank can hold 60 liters of fuel, which is must only for an aerobatic display, so for cross-country flight is almost impossible to fly without additional dismountable tanks on both ends of wings. Design works, construction and building of the first prototype took only one and half year (!!!). On 30th June 1975 was carried-out engine test.
The First Flight has been undertaken on 18th July 1975 with the chief-pilot Vlastimil Berg. The first Zlin Z-50 L ("L" = Lycoming Engine) had mark OK-070. Set of first flights was very successful and confirmed all the designer’s premises. Czech Aerobatic Team could bargain for this plane in World Aerobatic Championship 1976…
With Z-50 L type grew up first fabricated special Aerobatic Airplane in the world. It was constructed by the FAR regulations and pilots can fly many aerobatic maneuvers from +9G to – 6G.
In 1981 year was into the Zlin Z-50 installed more powerful Textron Lycoming AEIO-540 L1B5D with 224 kW (300 PS). This version – type Zlin Z-50 LS – was first flown by Zdenek Polasek on 29th July 1981. The more powerful engine boosted mainly the vertical maneuvers. Zlin Z-50 LS can with weight of 760 kg fly from +8G to –6G in Aerobatic Planes (A category), and between +3,8 and –1,5 in N category. Many of Z-50 L and LA versions were rebuilt to Z-50 LS in early eighties.
Technical description of Zlin Z-50
Zlin Z-50 is single-place single-engine all-metal airplane with settled landing gear.
Fuselage is mainly covered with metal; engine’s cover is laminated. The seat and back is adjusted for back-type parachute.
Manual control is with joystick; pedals are combined with main gear brake system.
Wing with the continuous beam is self-contained. The profile of the wing is NACA 0018 at the center and NACA 0012 at the ends. Ailerons have surface of 2,8 m2 and are moveable 200mm to both sides. There is also possibility to mount-in additional tanks (2x50 liters) to both wing sides for flight range increase.
Elevator and rudder are all-metal construction as well and is covered partly with dural and partly with a clothe. Rudder is enforced with two outer braces.
The main gear is manufactured from alloy Poldi Titan 110. Undercarriage legs are mounted into the bottom part of the fuselage. Main landing gear has two Barum Aero tires 350x135 mm (pressure 0, 25 Mpa), and has wheel track 1900 mm.
Engine is in versions L and LA Textron Lycoming AEIO-540-D4B5 with 191 kW (260 PS), flat, air-cooled four-stroke six-cylinder engine. In versions LS, LE and LX is used stronger version of the Textron Lycoming AEIO-540-D4B5 with 221 kW (300 PS). In version M is mounted-in Czech Avia M-137AZ with 132 kW (180 PS), air-cooled four-stroke inverted six-cylinder engine without compressor.
Propeller in L, LA, LS and LE versions are three-blade wood/laminated with coverage from metal, hydraulically adjustable, constant speed, type Hoffmann HO/V-123K-V 200AH with diameter 2.000 mm. Propeller in LX version is three-blade wood/laminated with coverage from metal, hydraulically adjustable, constant speed, type MT-Propeller MTV-9-B-C/200-15a with diameter 2.000 mm. Propeller in M version is two-blade wood/laminated with coverage from metal, hydraulically adjustable, constant speed, type type Avia V-503A with diameter 2.000 mm.
Wing span 8,58 m
Wing area 12,5 m2
Lenght 6,51 m
Weight 570 kg
Weight take-off 720 kg
Max Horizontal Speed 290 km/h
Cruise Speed 262 km/h
Max Horizontal Speed 290 km/h
G limits +9 g -6 g
Ceiling 7 km
Range of flight 180 km, 640 km with additional tanks