Seaplane fighter, flying boat parasol monoplane. Wingtips were turned down sharply
and served as a floats. Fuselage was slim. Interestingly, aerodynamics turned to be very good despite all fuselage
surfaces were flat. Wing wrapping was used instead of ailerons. Engine was covered with egg-shaped fairing.
Construction was light, sacrificing the strength. E.R.Engels himself
performed the tests. He managed to set a speed record for flying boats (170km/h). In the third flight
(December 5, 1916) one of the wing spars was broken, upper bracing wire
went loose and 'spooled' on the propeller and aircraft was damaged during emergency landing.
Despite the crash, aircraft could became a good seaplane fighter. Only minor modifications required, and production of 60
was ordered to Meltser factory. A.Yu.Villish was invited to supervise the construction.
Re-engined aircraft was designated Engels-II. First aircraft rolled out on August 24,
1917. The second - on September 9.
Flight tests (pilot lieutenant Yakovitskij) revealed that increased propeller reaction forces right wing to dip during
taxiing. Counterweight of 18lb was added to the left wingtip (inside). No other problems were obtained, and on October 10
first aircraft was accepted by Military Department. Than comes 'a break' for 3 years...
The second aircraft was finished in March 1920 and transferred to Naval
Aviation School (evacuated to Nizhnij Novgorod). There it was installed on skis and flight tested. But same year fall the school
was moved again. Year later (when aircraft already was well worn by travels and elements) it was flown (tried) again by
S.A.Kocherigin. Wingtips broke off on Takeoff Roll... Then floats from the
M-5 were installed. No way - increased drag resulted in noseover on takeoff.
It was the end of the story for the fastest flying boat of the WWI...
"History of aircraft construction in the USSR" by
V.B.Shavrov, Vol.1 p.257-258;