General Airborne Transport XCG-16

General Airborne Transport XCG-16


The XCG-16 was an experimental military glider ordered by the Army Air Corps. It was manufactured by General Airborne. It competed against the Waco CG-13A at Wright Field, with the XCG-16 winning the competition. Although some want to believe this last statement is true, the XCG-13 was built, tested and modified to become the CG-13A which was put into production by Ford and Northwestern, wheras the XCG-16 was never accepted for production or put into production by the USAAF.

The prototype MC-1 glider, (registered NX21757) was manufactured by the General Airborne Transport Co. This glider followed the successful and earlier flights of the half size prototype designed and constructed by William Hawley Bowlus of Bowlus Sailplanes. Bowlus had put in a bid on the 8 and 15 place glider, XCG-7/XCG-8, during the initial contracts with Material Division for a cargo glider to be used by the USAAF. Bowlus also made an attempt to secure a production run of training gliders with the 2 place XTG-12. The Waco designed XCG-3 and XCG-4 was the design the AAF selected.

Bowlus, along with partner Albert Criz eventually formed GATC and built the MC-1 to be a "commercially approved" glider, thus the NX number. The glider was test flown at March Field, California on September 11, 1943. The second flight ended in tragedy. The glider flew through the towing plane's propwash causing a violent reaction. The ballast carried within the glider was not secured and slid causing a weight shift in the glider. When the glider pilot pulled the tow release, it did not release. The glider began to "porpoise", the tow release opened but the pilot was unable to gain control. The glider, released from the tow plane and began a flat spin downward. The order was given to jump, but the glider by then was too low for a safe jump, although several (three) passengers jumped, only two survived. Richard Chichester du Pont, Special Assistant for the Glider Program, was killed when his parachute failed to completely open and the pilot, Colonel Ernest Gabel, was killed in the ensuing crash which left the MC-1 completely destroyed.

In spite of all the design problems and the MC-1 crash, a contract was approved on November 13, 1943 for two test flight articles and one static test article of the MC-1 glider designated as the USAAF XCG-16, serial number 44-76193. Only one XCG-16 was manufactured and tested. It was concluded that it did not meet military expectations as a combat glider.


met or eng?= eng

crew=Two pilots
capacity=42 troops or 10,050 lb (4,570 kg) of cargo
length m=14.72
length ft=48
length in=4
span m=27.98
span ft=91
span in=10
swept m=
swept ft=
swept in=
rot number=
rot dia m=
rot dia ft=
rot dia in=
dia m=
dia ft=
dia in=
width m=
width ft=
width in=
height m=5.58
height ft=18
height in=4
wing area sqm=105.9
wing area sqft=1,139
swept area sqm=
swept area sqft=
rot area sqm=
rot area sqft=
volume m3=
volume ft3=
aspect ratio=
empty weight kg=4,310
empty weight lb=9,480
gross weight kg=8,880
gross weight lb=19,540
lift kg=
lift lb=

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eng1 lbf-ab=
eng2 number=
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max speed kmh=255
max speed mph=160
max speed mach=
cruise speed kmh=
cruise speed mph=
range km=
range miles=
endurance h=
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ceiling m=
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* [ Уголок неба]
* [ Aircrash: XCG-16]

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